Price vs Quality. You get a lot of bang for the buck!
Length of use: Less than 6 months
Overall Rating: Currently 4/5 stars.
Appearance: Currently 4/5 stars.
Performance: Currently 4/5 stars.
Reliability: Currently 4/5 stars.
Value: Currently 4/5 stars.
Price paid: $300.00
Pros: read below
Cons: read below
Price: $300 (Canadian Dollars) + upgrades you will most likely buy.
Alright so this is my first marker, and i got to say it is a great platform. I have fired about 10000 balls so far and i am very happy with my results. Its very reliable, fast, and easy to use. I rarely chop balls, and i got +/- 15 FPS with almost no tweaking stock. (if you some one tells you thier $1000 dollar gun shoots +/- 1, they are BSing. The pros at my field are happy with +/-10 and they spend hours upgrading and tweaking)
I have not had any major issues and almost no minor issues with this gun so far. The only major draw back was that i had to pay for a bunch of upgrades (another 125 bucks canadian) to complete it. Read my review for details.
•The Price: This gun is cheap. Dollar per quality you really get a deal on this marker. The stock marker is good enough to enter any rookie torunament. *some upgrades are strongly recomended though*
•Firing Modes + Eyes The stock board comes with multiple firing modes, the 2 you will care about are semi, and ramping. You can also do 3 shot burst and full auto. The board is capped at 17 bps, but show me a rookie or that can pull more than 17 bps on semi... most pros cant do this without some kind of electronic assitance. Also the guns comes with decent break beam eyes stock.
•Easy To maintain: The maitenece is simple and striaght forward. The back out bolt is 10000 billion million trillion times better than the old ion system. Standard maitence is about 5 minutes. Unscrew back bolt, lube, screw back bolt in. You should do this after every day of "intense play" or about after every case.
•Very Common Gun: Everyone knows this gun. Most pros carry one as a practice gun or a backup. If you ever run into problems you will more than likely find some one at your local field that can help. That being said, you will not run into many problems. You will more likely ask the local ion experts for help installing your upgrades
Required Upgrades Ok, no upgrade is required, but there are many things smart parts "cheaped" out on to keep this gun under 300 dollars.
•Feed neck +$25. The reason you need this is simple, if you plan on moving a lot on the field, your hopper will fall out or you will wedge it in so tight you will break the hopper. I thought i didn't need to buy a clamping neck. I was wrong. Very wrong.
•Trigger +$20-$50. Every ion owner i have met has had thier stock trigger break. Its cheap plastic, and if you pull quickly it will eventully break. In my case, i was shot in the trigger from 7 feet and my trigger snapped.
Thats it! Those are all the "manditory" upgrades for the ion xe. Everything else is up to you. The following is a list of optional upgrades that are worth while eventully.
•QEV, $20 I bought the SP 360 QEV, it was designed for the ion and it was very simple to install. This was the first upgrade i got before the feedneck or trigger. I dropped my dwell from the stock 52 to about 20. This basicly doubled my shots per a tank. Also when I improve my skillz i will able to shoot faster . Definatly worth while.
•Barrel, $30+++ dollars. The stock barrel is fine, i know some people dont like it, but as a starting point, it gets the job done. This is the kind of thing you wait untill you get a deal to upgrade. You can always find a cheap 2nd hand UL or Stiffi on the forums or at your local field. Just make sure its an impulse threaded barrel .
•On/Off ASA $40: This is also a nice upgrade to have. It allows you to turn off the air supply at the tank end of the gun. Basicly it makes unscrewing a tank easy and saves o-rings. *when you turn it off the gun may still have air in it* make sure you safely dry fire the gun even after you remove the tank. My foot learned this lesson the hard way.
•New board. $50+++. This is something you may consider if you want to persue tournaments. I am still using the stock board, and i will continue to use it untill i find a deal on a better board. I dont like taking the grip frame off to adjust the settings but its not that bad.
•The bolt. I have yet to see a reason to change the stock bolt. I noticed that i was only getting poor air effiency with the stock set up, but the QEV upgrade quickly fixed it. Changing the bolt will not make a big difference, (or so i am told) If a deal comes my way i will probbaly take it, but otherwise the stock is fine. I heard there was a batch of bad sotck bolts, if yours breaks, call SP for a replacnment under the warrenty!
•The reg. Again, i have yet to see a reason to change the stock reg. From what im told, the stock reg is really quite good. Dont waste your money untill a really nice deal presents itself. Do some research if you want to change this part.
All in all this gun is a great buy. As i said above many pros keep them as back-ups. It a reliable and easy to maintain gun. In conclusion, if you are looking for a good starter gun buy this thing. Keep in mind you will immedaiatly want to spend another 70 bucks on the "manditory" upgrades after you play one round with it stock.
8 out of 10
Last edited on Sunday, May 17th, 2009 at 9:55 pm PST