Tippmann 98- while a great marker, it can't keep up with the X7
Tippmann A-5- the x-7's kid brother. good marker, maybe a little better for the pure amount of upgrades available for it.
06 Blue Dynasty Shocker SFT w/ 14" matching anno'd Freak barrel back (stainless steel inserts) and All American front, DYE Rotor Loader, DXS 48/3000 tank, Hybrid Gunslinger grips and SP Blackheart board
Tippmann X7 w/ Vortex mod, E-grip, 1x30mm Red Dot Scope, 14" Inch DYE Ultralite barrel, G36 folding stock, and vertical grip.
-HPA tank. you just have to. It's an air hog.
-Better barrel. The stock one isn't shabby, but you'll be wanting something better. A DYE UL works AWESOME.
-Stock, preferably a folding kind.
-Foregrip. the mag just doesn't cut it.
-Red dot scope/sight, or laser sight. The X7's iron sights are almost useless.
-E-Grip. Auto response is a thing to behold.
-ease of maintenance
-A little pricey for what you get
-"Iron" sights are useless
I'll say this right off the bat. I'm a speedball diehard. How I ended up buying an X7 I attribute chiefly to my want to rebel against the speedball norm. One year and far too many upgrades later, It can hang with a DM, and still sees time as a backup/spur of the moment marker.
This should tell you something about its looks. It looks like a compact version of the HK416 rifle, especially with the shroud. There are quite a few cosmetic upgrades for it at this point, so what kind of modern rifle or subgun you choose to imitate is wide open. Installation of an upgrade couldn't be easier- just push out the pins, slide in your new part, and its good to go.
Performance wise, it's OK out of the box. The barrel is nothing special, beyond looking snazzy. You'll want a new one. The cyclone works great- this is the one part of the gun that should never be changed or fiddled with. After experimenting with all the cyclone upgrades, I've gotten the best performance with the stock parts. You'll have to replace the stock plastic ratchet every now and again, but drop the metal ratchet in, and your cyclone turns into a blender. Slap a good stock, barrel, foregrip for stability, an Egrip, and possibly a good sight, and you'll find this thing a good match for just about any speedball gun. Prior to upgrading the cyclone, I never had a chop with this thing. Air efficiency is where it falls short, however. The thing is an Air hog. This didn't bother me, as speedball games last all of a few minutes and a fill station was a few steps off the field, but in a longer outdoor game, this would necessitate buying a really big tank. I'd recommend something in the 88-90ci range. below that, make sure it's compressed at 4500psi.
The X7 is blessed with Tippmann's age old reliability. This thing will just work. it doesn't matter if it hasn't been cleaned since you bought it, nor if its been taken apart, fiddled with, and then hammered back into one piece too many times to count. It will fire when you pull the trigger. The magnesium body can take all the beating you can dish out in stride.
The only gripes I have with the X7 are its iron sights and its price. 300, for a gun that needs upgrades right out of the box, is a little much. Be ready to throw down at least 400-450 when buying this gun to make it really shine. The iron sights, advertised as helping to improve long range aiming, do nothing of the kind. You can't use them with a mask on, and they're next to useless without a mask. They're good for looks, but that's about it. If you're serious about putting a military looking sight on it, get a red dot, or better yet, a laser sight for mounting on the front rails.
If you're a mil-sim minded woodsballer who wants a gun with easy, bolt on upgrades and the possibility to behave like a real assault rifle, get the X7. If you're an outdoor enthusiast who wants a rugged, durable paintball marker with ample spots for a foregrip and sight, get this gun. It works great outdoors and in, and once upgraded, can easily out-shoot any other mechanical woodsball marker.
If you play speedball, and are looking for something a step above a rental marker, do not get this gun. The upgrades to keep up with your competition will run you the kind of money that could buy an Ego.
9 out of 10
Last edited on Wednesday, August 5th, 2009 at 10:31 am PST