Nothing is similar. Smart Parts - Linear, 32 Degrees - Whisper, J&J Ceramic
Used Marballizer and Big Ball
Very solid build, easy to install, looks tough, sounds cool, shoots flat and far.
Inaccurate, expensive, done after ball breaks.
I am just a recreational woods baller. Looking at my marker setup you can tell I don't go crazy over equipment, and I am not nearly as die-hard as a lot of the people who post reviews appear to be.
To the point. First of all I have a BT4, not an A-5 . . . BT4 takes same barrels as A-5. This could be the reason for my experience. I wanted very badly for the flatline to live up to all the hype I read about, more specifically I was wanting an advantage on players who didn't already have one.
I bought the barrel for $100. Installed it and took it out to shoot. I was about 75 feet from the target, which was a 1 foot strip of plywood. The barrel did shoot flat, just as promised. However every other shot was hooking. Played around with the velocity, because I read that velocity makes a big difference. Too much up or down and it got worse, but never really better. And then a paintball broke. Zero accuracy after a break, you have to use a pull through squeegee.
Not overly excited about the test, but wanted to see how it was in the field. This barrel does shoot far, but I didn't notice a significant reach over other players . . . at all. I found myself trying to shoot from farther away than I normally would. The farther I shot, the less accurate the shot was. My shots were all over the place, and I was just throwing paint and not hitting much. Had an easy open shot from about 20 feet away on someone and a ball broke. After the break, the balls were hooking all over, and I got taken out. Needless to say, I was disappointed and didn't think it was worth the $100. Got rid of it.
Played recently with a couple of guys with flatlines. One guy had an X7 and the other an A-5. These markers had awesome setups, I was jealous. These guys seemed to do well with there guns, and weren't complaining. Talked to the guy with the X7 and asked him about his flatline. He absolutely loved it. Never had a problem with balls breaking or having to mess with the velocity. He did say he had the occasional break with the flatline on his A-5.
So . . . I decided to give it another chance and test it out more. Bought another flatline. Setup another target about 100 feet away, and compared it to my much cheaper barrels. It can shoot a good distance with flat trajectory, compared to the arch of a normal barrel. However the accuracy just wasn't there. I could consistently hit the target with my cheap barrels, and the flatline was anything but consistent.
If you like to hang back and throw paint, or want a cool looking gun . . . then maybe this is for you. If you expect a reasonable level of accuracy and like to be closer to the action as I do, then don't waste your time or money. I want a simple low maintenance barrel that can shoot through the very rare break. I don't want a barrel that is difficult to adjust and clean, or that needs the perfect conditions to perform good.
Do your research before you buy a barrel, and don't believe all of the reviews you read. If at all possible, test out the barrels and talk to actual people.
Could have been my marker setup, maybe I wasn't holding the gun level as you're suppose to. Regardless, it wasn't worth $100+, and I wouldn't recommend the barrel to anyone. You can spend $35-$50 and get a good accurate barrel. Save your money and get other upgrades.
The accuracy of this review is disputed. Please see discussion on the comments page.
Period of Product Use:
Less than a month
29 of 36 people found this review helpful.
More than 5 years
Similar Products Used:
Model 98 + Flatline (essentially the same)
M98 and A5 with Flatline with lots of various upgrades for gas efficiency, looks, and ROF.
Generally the smallest size you can get but unfortunately this is not a universal truth on the Flatline.
Range, the wow factor of the first time you shoot it.
Accuracy, maintenance, and most of all CONSISTENCY - read my review!
I was an early adopter of the Flatline barrel when it first appeared on the market for the Model 98 years ago. At that time I had not yet graduated to an electric marker running on HPA and was using a tricked out M98. I play a lot of scenario games and liked to play sniper so the Flatline seemed like a great choice, man was I wrong.
6 months later I was so frustrated with my M98 + Flatline I not only stopped using the barrel but I SOLD my M98 and all related accessories! I have since tried the A5 with flatline to see if it has improved and found it to be essentially the same. I have 6 months of play experience with this barrel - PLEASE if you are considering a Flatline purchase keep reading and think carefully.
There are a lot of 10/10 reviews posted on this page. They all say things like "Wow! Amazing range!" and "Great Accuracy!" but if you read carefully you will see the word "if" used an usually high number of times - and that, in a nutshell, is the basic problem with the Flatline barrel. The Flatline seems great when you are shooting it in your backyard under perfect conditions. The Flatline will shoot an acceptably accurate shot at slightly longer ranges than traditional barrels IF:
- You can keep your velocity at a consistent 280 FPS +/- 5 FPS at all times.
- You never break a ball in the barrel (God help you if you do)
- You have the exact right paint for your barrel (which can vary from barrel to barrel and can even change depending on the temperature outside!)
But these are just too many "if's" for a day of actual paintball. Good luck keeping a consistent 280 FPS all day long, especially if you are on CO2. Play somewhere where it gets hot in the afternoon? I hope you like frequent trips to the chrony. Is the field you play at or the scenario your are attending "Field Paint Only"? If so and if that is not the exact right size for you flatline you are in for an afternoon of comically inaccurate shots, or worse - spraying liquid paint out the front of your barrel most of the time. Did you just experience a barrel break? Hope you brought a sidearm! Have fun taking your gun apart after the game to clean it out while your friends kick back with a can of Coke.
Even IF all the stars line up for you - you have PERFECT paint match for your particular flatline, your velocity stays extremely consistent all the time (maybe you are on good HPA and have an awesome reg installed... why you would pay for that kind of hardware on an A5 or M98 is beyond me... but some people do...) AND you never have a barrel break ALL DAY, your ball-to-ball accuracy will still not be any more consistent (probably a lot less) than a traditional barrel - and consistency is ultimately the most important thing in paintball accuracy. I do not care if you can hit a coke can 25 yards away dead-on with flat trajectory 4 out of 5 times. A good player with a good marker will be able to do that 5 out of 5 times with an arced trajectory. Flat trajectory does not automatically translate into "accurate." Sure it looks cool, but is it consistent and reliable? No it is not.
If you buy the flatline you will probably be impressed with it when you set it up, chrony it to the right velocity, get the right paint, and play with it in your back yard. But when you take it to the field - you are in for a day of frustration. The concept of the Flatline barrel is insteresting and I commend Tippmann for coming up with a novel approach to delivering paint to a target, but there are just too many variables in paint quality, gun velocity, and field conditions to achieve CONSISTENCY on the flatline. Want to be a paintball snipre? Do yourself a huge favor and just buy a nice long high-quality traditional barrel and PRACTICE. Paint does not care if it was "floated" to the target or "lobbed", it will break either way. Marksmanship is about knowing where your shot is going to hit before you pull the trigger and not having to cross your fingers and hope for the best! YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED! ;)
6 position collapsible Stock
Any RPS paintballs....I usually use Super Swirl. But I have used Hotspot before, they arent as accurate...
(small bore size)
Distance!! Accuracy is nice, it isnt 100%, but its above average.
If you break a ball your outta luck....
This is a VERY nice barrel. It does require skill to use though. You have to have a feel for how your barrel shoots, and keep it CLEAN! after every game I run hot water through it, then for the next game its ready to go. As far as accuracy, it is quite good. It has a nice trajectory, but mine can at times curve right, although it is not every shot. The spread between the shots arent very much although I do get an akward shot every once in awhile.
If you are a back player, or just want to increace your distance, than the flatty is for you. The accuracy is a greatly helpfull atribute, and the distance is hard to beat. But if you want 100% accuracy then dont get this barrel. You do sacrifice that random shot that goes bad for distance.
anything with a hard shell. I like Marbs and Blaze
Accuracy (see review)
First off let me say that I love this barrel. Ok, now that that's out of the way on to the review. When you first open the package you think, "wow, this is small!" And it is. It is roughly 10 inches long including the shroud. Then you have to tune the barrel. make it so that the top screw is directly infront of the line in the front sight. Then, when you get to the field, chrono the gun to around 260-265. I left mine at 270 and i had balls hook up, so i had to chrono down in the end. The flatline does exactly what it promises, which is increase distance. and it does it without sacrificing accuracy. Now, don't think that you can be a sniper with it, because you trade silence for distance. This thing really claps, LOUD! Now, if you are playing one of those kids who blind fire from behind their starting bunker, tilt you gun to the right for a right hook around the bunker, or to the left for a left hook around the bunker.
Overall, it is a good barrel. I enjoy every bit of mine, and it makes muppets poop themselves
this barrel is very amzing for what it does. in about, 8 inches, it gives range and acc. like no other barrel.
Range- LONG!!! you can easily call your self a long baller with this lil' baby. where most barrels drop off, this barrels paint keeps on flying. it may seem like after a while you balls are just floating, well, there really not. because the barrel puts a nice back spin on the paint, this gives it range and keeps it more in a stright line verus the normal arch you have with stright barrels. but for longer targets, your ganna have to arch it. i believe it can touch targets aournd 75 yards to 80. i never have attepmted to measure how far but it does go farther than normal stright barrels.
Accuracy- because it puts a back spin on the ball, they tend to go in a stright line thus makeing your pattern tighter vs. SB (stright barrels). how ever, if you tilt the gun to far over, you lose it because it slightly turns into the BT Apex, and gives a slight curve to the ball. but if held stright up it makes a nice long path. like all barrels, the father the target, the less accuret you will be. so, other than a tighter pattern at around 150 ft, this barrel preformes very well.
Loudness- compared to other barrels this is pretty loud. it doesnt help that theirs no ports on it. however, i think if you look pass the loundness, you like the barrel. but if you like loud barrels, then there is no problem for you.
Wieght- slightly heavy ~1 pound (not sure, never wieghed it). most of the wieght comes from the outside shround and end peices. in a game though i never had a problem being heavier than normal barrels. to be honest i dont evan notice the wieght. cant say it thoughs the gun off balance cause if you have a stock, or tank on the gun, i ganna say your not ganna notice any difference.
Size- very nice size for what it offers. no needing a 20 inch barrel for those long shots, just get this and you get a nice deal. coming in around 9-10 inches, its a nice short size. perfect for tight areas with not alot of room. the round shroud that it comes with makes for a nice grip with out being to big. it's diameter is slightly bigger than the width of the gun.
cleaning- well if you broke paint....your ganna have a heck of a time cleaning it. but there is a very simple solution to this. what you can do is get some matching thumb screws for i believe first 3 screws (the one above and below the barrel mount and the one that screws into the hopper). although i never tried it, from what i heard it works. for me since i dont have that, and shoving the barrel squwegy down the end of the barrel all the down to the forward bot makes no sense, i have to adjust the cyclone feed to allow the squeegy down it and up the barrel and pull it through to clean it. the squeegy sometime gets stuck in the cyclone freeder, but a simple push and pull fixes it. if you need to clean the outside of the barrel for what ever, there is a hex srew on each of the end pieces (one on top closet to the gun and on bottom at the other end). unsckrew those, take the end piece off of the farthest one from the gun, then the shroud. and there you go.
maintance- the only real thing you need to marke sure of is that your barrel is stright. i had this problem of it being too lose. but to fix it being lose or off center. you need to unskrew the hex skrew closet to the gun and in side the hole, is another hex skrew. i dont know the size, but i believe i used a slight smaller size than the one above it i could be worng. but anyhow, that hex skrew there goes through and hits the barrel, adjusting its tightness. so if your barrel is off center or too lose, just tighting that skrew and you'll good to go. to know if it is centered or close to being, without shooting, take off your front end piece off and see if it fit easily on with out you having to adjust or force it, your good. but if you have to twist the end piece to meet up the holes so you can skrew it in, you might be off by a bit.
installing- pretty easy, some force need, but nothing extreme. all you need to do, is losen the front two and the hopper skrew, slide in the barrel (some force may apply), twist, and make sure if you have the front sight on, that the screw and the center of the sight match up. the barrel has the "barrel adapter" on it so you don't need to match any treads up.
Paint- this is a major one, if you dont have the right paint, good luck. you must have the right paint matching the bore size. too big or too small will lead you up in choping and in accuret shots. from what i found out is that Evil, Marbs, Crush, and Karnage all work pretty good. personally i like Evil the best, had a frew breaks, but not often enough for making me mad. i would typcally stray away from cheap paint, and go for the medium to higher priced paint. so like Monster or paint like you get at fred myers i wouldnt go with. but once you find the right paint, you will be set.
FPS setting- from what i heard, setting your FPS around 280 gives you the best resluts, personally i have a hard time getting to that cause i use CO2 and my weather doesnt help much (often cold, to Warm) so my Co2 is constally changing. i usally have my gun's FPS set at around 270-280, for me, i have no problem.
I have heard that the effect of the Flatline does wear out, for if this is really true, i don't know.
a really great barrel for Snipers and what not. just get your settings right, and you'll be good.
Tippmann A-5 camo:
Off set rail
Low profile hopper/X-7 hopper
Marbs ... although impacts do work well
Consistent ... Needs expansion chamber but still very impresive.
My flatline has never failed ... except once but that had nothing to do with the performance ... well the barrel was loose, not the whole entire flatline and the adapter thing ... just the barrel but if that didnt happen i wouldnt have found out how to take off the barrel without taking the adapter off.
The flatline adds great range and accuracy to an a-5. It is also awsome because it isnt huge ... what i mean is, you dont need a 20 in. barrel to shoot this accurate!!
Its worth every single penny.
10 out of 10
Last edited on Saturday, July 7th, 2007 at 2:27 pm PST
SP steel color kit
PDW Air Thru MAG
Picitanny Sight Mount
1x30 Red Dot scope
Diablo Heat, Nightmare
Easy to clean,
Doesn't break paint.
I'll explain below
ive had my A-5 for about a year now and the Flatline was the very first upgrade i bought. since it was new, it worked perfectly. paint flew far, and striaght, just as described. but after a while, i noticed problems. the co2 was trying to get too much air to the Flatline for it to work propperly, the cyclone wasnt working right. i noticed the Flatline then chopped more and more paint. i dont know if its my a-5s problem or what.
i then sold my Flatline.
Other than that, great buy. does as described, easy to clean.
Great buy. Does as described, easy to clean.
8 out of 10
Last edited on Sunday, June 10th, 2007 at 9:09 pm PST
Hard to switch out barrels, but why do you need to?
Great Barrel for your a5, I think that it works great if you have a nitro tank and you get it on just right and you have you FPS just right, then its FREAKING awsome!!! I shot 2000 Rounds of regular field paint and i didnt chop once, but to get better accuracy i would suggest marbz or better.
Tippmann A-5 , Flatline barrel, Responce trigger, a.b.s Red dot scope, CAR 15 stock, Shock tech relocator bar, Double trigger, Dead-on internals, Flatline battle shroud,and a mil-sim M16 clip.
All stars and marballiser.
Maybe a little heavy.
This is a really great barrel.I have mainly shot with All-star, but marbs work great to. It definitely adds at least 100 ft.The barrel is is fairly accurate at longer ranges, but will eventually lose accuracy. Some people say it shoots to slowly to do any good, but the reason it appears to float in the air is because of the backspin .
I think this is one of the best barrels to get. It Is guaranteed to give you greater distance.
9 out of 10
Last edited on Friday, June 8th, 2007 at 9:43 am PST
The accuracy of this review is disputed. Please see discussion on the comments page.
Period of Product Use:
Less than a month
0 of 7 people found this review helpful.
Similar Products Used:
None and i hope i dont
DXS 4500 psi
none dont use it
Not accurate, Big, Heavy
Ok i bought this barrel having high hopes. well they were crushed when i played with it and it chopped A LOT. Also this thing takes some time to install. when i was cleaning the thing the actual barrel slid about an inch and a half out of the shroud. also this thing is quite expensiv for that kind of quality. My shots were really un accurate all they did was go farther, but by that time they were moving to slow to bust.
My advice is dont get this barrel its not worth it, get a Freak or some other kit but not this.