I purchased my Tippmann X-7 with factory installed Response Trigger on ebay for 280 (it is the best price I have seen anywhere). I only had another 60 dollars, so I purchased a Tasco Red Dot and a "Gripod" (If a grip and a bipod had a baby, it would be a gripod). So far, only the X-7 and scope have arrived. Anyways, I couldn't resist taking the X-7 out for some test firing.
At first, I didn't want to use the old paint from a previous event that I had laying around. I believe it was Spank. Anyways, I was worried about chopping a ball on day 1. Reluctanty, I loaded up a hopper of the Spank and fired 1 ball at a time, without using the "auto" on the Respose Trigger. I was firing at a basketball from 100 feet. I was hitting 9 out of 10, and this was from a standing position. I then decided to use the "auto" on the response trigger, and was still able to hit 8/10. I have to say that I am extremely impressed with the performance of the marker itself. I am also impressed with the stock barrel (stock barrels always have throw a curveball from time to time), although I will be getting a Flatline or Apex barrel ASAP. I love the response trigger as well. I had read about people having problems with the trigger pull being too heavy, but I didn' think it was heavy at all.
So now I will break the X-7 down into a few catagories and grade them.
Performance - I shot 1000 rounds of old paint for this markers first trip out, and it still didn't break any balls. After taking the time to hone in the red dot, I went pretty hard on the marker, running through four or five hoppers in the matter of a minute or two. No breaks, and very few curveballs. The performance has to get a grade of 10, because I had no problems at all with velocity or breaks.
Size - The marker is a 1:1 scale replica of the AR-15 (without the cyclone/hopper of course). I think that it is the perfect size. Some say that it is too heavy, but that makes it that much more mil-sim for me. Size gets a 10.
Ergonomics - I'm a fan of the magazine storage compartment. I love having access to allen wrenches, lube, o-rings,etc when I'm out on the field. Having gun issues? Retreat back 100 yards, field strip/fix, and get back to the front line. I also love the fact that this marker is stacked with rails. I am using the top rail for my red dot, and the front/bottom rail for the gripod. The gripod will be great ergonomically, because the bipod hides inside of the grip, and is unveiled with the bush of a button. This gun was built with ergonomics in mind, it scores 10 in this category too.
Noise - This will be the first score below a 10. It has to be. With the stock barrel, the X-7 (along with the Tippmann family) is quite loud. This can be fixed through the use of aftermarket barrels (lots of porting) and through the use of low pressure kits. I haven't seen a low pressure kit for the X-7 yet (I don't think those will come around until next yer). For noise, I give the X-7 a 7.
Price - MSRP of 329.99 seems a little steep for me, but I purchased mine with a response trigger for 280. If you are counting the MSRP price, the score would be 8, if you count my ebay price, the score is 10.
Materials - The X-7 receiver is made from magnesium, which is very light, but very durable. The magazine is plastic unfortunately, and is the only cheap part to the marker. I have to give the materials a 9, with a better quality magazine, it would be 10.
Hopper - I like this new hopper that they have changed since the A-5. You had to use offset rails to have scopes on the A-5 because the hopper was in the field of view. This hopper is offset to the right, is less taller, and longer. It fits over 200 paintballs (I counted 204). The only problem with the hopper is when you are shooting downhill and are running low on hopper ammunition. Some paint has a tendency to slide to the front of the hopper and not fall into the cyclone. The X-7 hopper is better than the A-5, so I am happy to see it get re-engineered, but it still needs a little work. It gets a 9.
Average these out and you get a 9.1. That is the score I would give the X-7 if I were allowed to (I don't see why they don't give that option). Overall, Tippmann X-7 gets a 9 (Which is good, because nothing is EVER perfect.)
The Tippmann X-7 is a great Mil-sim marker for a reasonable price. It can be modded into a 1000 different variations, from dagger positions, to heavy gunners. It is reliable, rugged, and 1:1 scale with the vicious AR-15. Tippmann is a quality, American made product that I am proud to own/use. I will update this review as I use the X-7 more during this SPPL season.