Let me say this before I start reviewing. You DON'T have to buy the RF chip for this hopper to work on your marker. There's two different modes. So you can still use the loader without the RF chip. Also, the RF chip DOESN'T have to be soldered onto the board. There's a company that makes a "harness" for the RF chip. It splits the wires going to the solenoid and allows you to attach the RF chip WITHOUT soldering. I'll post urls to websites, pictures, and videos in the Comments section.
Strong shell and a thick, short feed neck.
The shells made out of polycarbonate, the same material that goggle lenses are made of, so you know that it's going to be strong. I've only dropped mine once onto grass, so I can't say how tough the shell is, but there are videos of people standing on them and pounding nails into a board with the hopper, so it's a strong shell.
This hopper sits really low on my marker, which is great. The feed neck is nice and thick too. I'd imagine it being difficult to break the feed neck unless you really over tighten your clamping feed neck.
If you want to buy a different colored shell, you don't have to transfer all the mechanics of the hopper like you have to do with other loaders. All you have to do is snap the tray out of one hopper and put it in the other shell and you're ready to go.
All the mechanics can be removed in one large tray out the back of the hopper so now you don't have to unscrew the shells to clean them. There's only 5 screws holding the shells together, so if you do need to take the shells apart, it's not going to be that big of a deal. Also, the screws don't screw into the shell, they screw into a nut on the other half of the shell. There's no threading in the shells, so you don't run the risk of stripping the threading in the shells and needing to replace them. If you strip the nut, you can replace them separate from the shell.
The pulse can run off of 6 AAs or 1 9v, so if you're worried about weight, you can opt to use the 9v instead of the AAs. Also the 2 9v mod for the HALO will work on the Pulse I believe.
Electric Rip Drive
I haven't had a jamming problem with the Pulse yet, but when you do, all you have to do is press a little button on the bottom left of the loader to unjam it. The button causes the drive cone to spin in reverse, thus clearing the jam without the use of a Rip Drive. I wish the button was located more towards the center of the loader so reaching it when shooting left handed wouldn't be so awkward, but O' well.
Well this isn't necessarily a board issue, but the on/off button doesn't have a annoying membrane switch over it. They end up falling apart and looking like crap after a few months, and then they loose all their water proofing capabilities. The pulse doesn't have that problem. Although if you're worried about it not being water proof, I'd recommend just putting a small piece of electrical tap over the button.
The light that is used to differentiate between off, RF mode (Green mode), and Pulse mode (Red mode) is nice a bright so you don't have to sit there and block out the sun with one hand while squinting to see if the light is on.
The Pulse has two modes that it can function in. There's Green mode which requires you to have a RF chip installed in your marker. This sinks your hopper with your marker so every time you pull the trigger, the hopper feeds a ball. It's the same premise that the Reloader works off of, but instead of waiting for the hopper to "hear" the marker fire, the RF chip hi-jacks the signal from the board to the solenoid. So the hopper is reacting faster to you firing the marker than it would if it had to wait to "hear" the marker fire. In Green mode, the hopper waits for you to pull the trigger before it starts spinning. If you don't pull the trigger, the hopper will Pulse once every five seconds to ensure that there are balls in the stack.
Then there's Red mode. Red mode is what you use if you don't have an RF chip installed in your marker. The hopper pulses on the ball stack every .5 second (That would be twice every second) to ensure that there are balls in the stack. If it pulses and it doesn't feel any resistance, the hopper spins freely until there's resistance from the ball stack.
I use red mode on my EGO and thus far it's worked great. I've only had the hopper lag once and it was when I was shooting my marker in my back yard. It happened because the hopper pulses twice every second. So if you start shooting right after the hopper pulses and you're shooting at 15 BPS, you'll fire 6-8 balls before the hopper pulses again and realizes that there's no balls in the stack. I just happened to fire my marker right after it pulsed and that caused the delay in the feeding. This won't be a problem once I get the RF chip for my marker though and it really isn't a big deal now.
These modes eliminate the need for Break Beam eyes or sound sensors. That means that you don't have to worry about a ball breaking and covering up the BBEs or your hopper picking up the sound of somebody else's marker and trying to feed.
The Pulse is lighter than a Halo, but it still weights more than a VLocity. Weight really isn't that big of deal to me though, so this might bother someone else more than it bothers me. Also, I use 6 AAs in my Pulse, but I use the Energizer Lithiums. They weight 1/3 less than a normal AA and they last something like 5 times longer. Infrequent battery changes are a good thing. The Pulse does have a low batter signal though just in case you forget to change your batteries.
In my opinion the worst part of this loader is the lid. DXS says that the lid can close via the magnets, or if you want a tight fit, you can snap the lid all the way closed. The problem is that the magnets don't hold the lid down tight enough. You can barely shake the hopper and the lid opens. Well close it all the way then, right? Well the lid is so ridiculously difficult to open and close all the way. It's almost a two hand job to get the lid to close. So I sanded my lid down and now it closes wonderfully. If you get one and you need to sand it down, there's 2 little tabs on the underside of the lid towards the spring area. If you sand those down a bit, the lid fits much nicer.
No doubt, the Pulse is one of the most expensive hoppers at around $150 just for the hopper and another $35 for the RF chip. But considering all the extras that you get out of this hopper in comparison to the others, I think the price is justified.
This hopper is, by far, the best hopper that I've ever used. Sure it has it's weaknesses, just like any other hopper, but it's the strengths of this hopper that make it a must buy for anyone who wants a hopper that will never let them down.
Please check the comments section for URLs to websites that have the RF harness, as well as some pictures of it, and some videos of the pulse in action.
--NOTE-- Fits DMs, PMs, Angels, 06 Cyborgs, and Egos
I've heard that some companies will be putting out boards that have the RF chip on them. I believe someone posted that in one of their reviews here.
Harness is $23. That's better than soldering it to your board though if you ask me.
www.destructivecustoms.com -- Home Page
http://www.destructivecustoms.com/gallery/index.php?id=66 -- Pic of the Harness
Videos of the Pulse:
http://dxspulse.com/ -- Pulse Homepage, has a good video of the Pulse
http://youtube.com/watch?v=B4LGdFTzEng -- Drop Test
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8xHwyZxpF-4 -- Drop Test, better view
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eut7qpIYdo4 -- Same test, but with 1 9v
-- HALO Vs. Apache and Pulse Vs Velocity -- Guy on the right has the Pulse and Velocity
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r04uAJfvHrU&NR -- Halo Vs Pulse Pulse is on the Left
Hope this helps
Last edited on Saturday, January 13th, 2007 at 1:12 pm PST