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Smart Parts Ion XE Reviews

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Smart Parts Ion XE
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Number of Reviews: 37
Average Rating: 8.6 / 10
Manufacturer Website: Click here
Suggested Retail Price: $225

Manufacturer DescriptionSubscribe to Reviews on this Product - Edit this Product Listing
The embodiment of affordable firepower. Ion changed the paintball paradigm by being the first marker to deliver true electropneumatic performance in the casual paintball player's price range. With multiple firing modes, an aggressive rate of fire, and break beam Vision anti-chop system, the Ion XE continues the Ion tradition of tournament level performance at a low price. The best feature of the new ION XE is the Bolt out Back design. This new design allows even a novice player to clean the bolt in seconds.

Smart Parts Ion XE Features:

Bolt-Out-Back design makes this Ion easier to maintain than ever before. One allen wrench is all that is needed to remove the bolt sleeve, bolt and bolt stop from the rear of the marker, providing complete access to the entire bolt and valve assembly in seconds.
Weight (marker only): 1 lb. 15 oz.
Length (w/out barrel): 8.5 in.
Operating Pressure: 180psi
Gas Source: HPA or CO2
Anti-Chop System: Break Beam VisionTrigger Pivot: Stainless steel pin
Ball Detent: Dual rubber style
Semi auto, rebound, 3 round burst (10bps max), full auto, (10bps max)
Max Rate of fire: 17bps (higher with Blackheart board)
Field legal mode lockRuns on one 9 volt battery
Standard ASA includedIon one piece 14 inch barrel
Feedneck: Low profile friction grip vertical / NXT thread
Aluminum / polymer grip frame/body
Product Availability 
The Smart Parts Ion XE is newer, so it should be commonly available, both new and used.
Places to Buy
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wethepeople42 Thursday, April 30th, 2009
Period of
Product Use:
6 months
Paintball
Experience:
More than 5 years
Similar
Products Used:
Spyder Pilot (old style)
Tippman A-5
Angel
Marker Setup: Ion XE
Dead On Paintball Drop
Halo B
Yellow body kit
stock guts
Recommended
Upgrades:
FEED NECK!!
power button
trigger
Strengths: Light
easy to disassemble
reliable
Weaknesses: See upgrades
dosent do well in extreme cold
Review: Had my trusty Pilot for 4 years now and thought it was time for a upgrade, ever since the original ion came out i wanted one, when i got the XE i noticed how easy it was to take apart and clean, fired about a case and a half of paint and had not one chop or ball go askew. Played the following week and it was like 10 degrees out and i played for like a hour and it would not read the ball in the breech and when it did it choped it all up, then cleaned it out and played for like 10 min and it started spewin air out the barrel. fixed that and have been playing ever since, i dont play speedball just woodsball and i cant seem to figure out how some people can carry those mil-sim guns. granted they look sweet they just seem heavy. but oh well.
Conclusion: Hands down one of the better guns i have used, if you have a fast enough trigger finger you can keep up with Angel, Egos.
Rating:
9 out of 10
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azapainbaw Sunday, March 22nd, 2009
Period of
Product Use:
6 months3 of 3 people found this review helpful.

Paintball
Experience:
2 years
Similar
Products Used:
Tried the normal ion
My brother has the vibe

Marker Setup: Ion xe
yellow body
freak jr barrel
cp on/off
cp reg
hybrid grips
virtue board
ez on/off
smart parts qev
virtue laser eyes
l7 bolt
qlock
cp rake trigger
empire magna
45/45 crossfire tank
Recommended
Upgrades:
first of all - FEEDNECK - the stock is complete crap and your hopper will fall off
then - asa
barrel if you relly want better accuracy, stock wasnt that bad
my stock trigger broke sum how.. ;(
Strengths: bolt out back
CHEAP - unless u upgrade it

Weaknesses: None relly besides the fact that some of the stock parts are kinda crapy.
Review: I got this gun as a gift from my parents. I played a couple of times and loved it. i gradually put more and more upgrades on it. Its sort of an exact copy of the normal ion except it has the BOB. The only problems i had was the fact that I had to pay 40 dollars for a new qlock seeing as my first hopper before i got the virtue (egg 3) kept falling off...
(key note - - if you try squeezing the hopper in the stock feedneck... it wrecks the hoppers feedneck)
My stock board harness also broke like the second time i played with it... i have no idea how this happened so i had to send it in to smart parts.
Also my trigger broke and I had to get a new one of those.
I don't really see why people always hate on this gun. It's an awesome gun and its brought me through lots of wins in tourneys against others with egos and dms... you just have to put the money and time in it.

Conclusion: Overall this is an amazing gun. Go buy it if you like customization or if your just one of those weekend warrior guys. It has awesome price and the guys over at smart parts are great. They fixed my board for free after the battery harness broke on my stock board.
Rating:
9 out of 10
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Jayy Deuce22 Monday, March 2nd, 2009
Period of
Product Use:
3 months4 of 4 people found this review helpful.

Paintball
Experience:
1 year
Similar
Products Used:
Tippman 98 Custom - Does not even come close.
Other low-end markers - Again don't compare
Marker Setup: *Ion Xe
*Halo B w/ Rip Drive
*CP Clamping Feedneck
*Custom Empire Grips
*Invert 56/4500 HPA Carbon Fiber Tank
*Stock Barrel

Recommended
Upgrades:
*FEEDNECK (Some like it but personally, i hate it. I Will explain in review
*Barrel maybe - Stock is pretty accurate but upgrade maybe needed
*Trigger?
Strengths: *Low-price
*Accuracy
*Weight
*Quality
*Looks
*B.O.B. (Bolt-Out-Back)
Weaknesses: *Feedneck is about it
Review: This gun is a great entry-level paintball marker. I bought this gun in a package deal so it came at an even better price. Out of the box, this gun rips considerably for what type of gun your getting. The Ion Xe is the most cost-effective gun I've seen out on the market. This gun with a couple of minor upgrades, like the feedneck and maybe a trigger, rips with the best. I recomend getting a carbon fiber tank with this gun because regular tanks that give you a pretty good amount of shots out of it weigh you down and make you very slow out on the paintball field. Along with the great performance of the gun comes with a great look as well. It has many unique parts and different color body kits out there so you can really make this gun your own. Considering this gun is a great ENTRY LEVEL marker, it has a great BPS rate (17 BPS). Along with the many strengths of this gun comes, to me, the only one real weakness and many people will agree with me. FEEDNECK. This feedneck first of all can barely accomodate the large neck size of hoppers like the Empires and the Halos. If you result to sanding down the hopper to make it fit, it will probably end up too loose and will fall out anyway. During a paintball match, I slid into dorito one, not even a dive, just a regular slide. As i was sliding into the bunker, my Halo B flew off and cracked into the wall. Thankfully it didn't break but I knew from then on, i had to protect my hoppers by getting a better feedneck. I decided to buy the CP Clamping Feedneck for $30 from the field. Installation was free and it was ready in a quick minute. From that time on, my hopper has never came off when i didn't want it to.
Conclusion: Overall, this gun is a great entry-level marker that doesn't leave a big hole in your wallet. It's very customizeable and has many strengths. If you upgrade the feedneck, and have a good tank, you will be very happy with the performance of this paintball marker. I give it a ten because for what it is meant to be, an Entry-Level marker, it is the best one out there for the cost.
Rating:
10 out of 10
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AustinH1919 Tuesday, February 24th, 2009
Period of
Product Use:
3 months2 of 2 people found this review helpful.

Paintball
Experience:
4 years
Similar
Products Used:
Tippmann 98, Reg. Ion, Vibe - The Ion XE is the best out of all of these for the price.
Marker Setup: -Ion XE (Blue and Black parts)
-16" Freak Barrel
-CP Roller Trigger
-CP Regulator
-Smartparts on/off ASA
-Warrior Clamping Feedneck
-Empire Reloader B
-Crossfire 68ci 4500psi
-Virtue Board
Recommended
Upgrades:
Trigger, Feedneck, QEV.
Strengths: Bolt out back, Accurate
Weaknesses: Feedneck
Trigger
Review: Before I bought this gun, I had a Tippmann 98 custom w/ reponse trigger and loved it. I thought that mechanical guns were the way to go. But once I got my Ion XE, it completely changed the way I looked at Electronic makers. The recoil is rediculously low and it has great accuracy. The price was very affordable for this kind of marker. I actually think SP lost profit making it $225. Now for the break down.

PROS
- Nice and quiet.
- Low operating pressure
- Easy on/off button
- Geat stock board. (Semi, Ramping, 3 Burst, Full auto)
- Can get up to 17 bps stock. Not bad.
- Stock barrel is a 14" smartparts barrel. Very nice.
- Bolt out the back - Waaaay easier to clean than the Tippmann. Just slides out the back.
- Easy assembly - When you clean the gun, the assembly is very basic.

CONS
- Stock feedneck is not adjustable which makes your hopper loose.
- Stock trigger wobbles from side to side and is not too ramping friendly. Magnetic.



Conclusion: As you can see, the gun overall has tons of pros, with a lot less cons, which can both be easily replaced for around $50. This is a good gun and I would highly reccomend it to players that are just getting into paintball and don't know too much. Very simple gun and is very easy to use.

I'll give it a 9, due to the feedneck and trigger. Other than that, the gun works perfect.
Rating:
9 out of 10
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accuracy1 Sunday, January 11th, 2009
Period of
Product Use:
1 year6 of 6 people found this review helpful.

Paintball
Experience:
2 years
Similar
Products Used:
sp1(cheaper but better made)
Marker Setup: Ion XE
Stock barrel
CP sling trigger
on/off asa
stock barrel
crossfire 68/4500/ tank cover
halo b
Recommended
Upgrades:
Barrel
Feedneck
trigger(mine broke)
if you get these upgrades this gun is good
Strengths: Light
Weaknesses: Feedneck
ASA
Review: Okay i got this gun to replace my tippmann. It was a good deal. The retail is $235 but the shop i go to sells it for like 160. Dont listen to you get what you pay for when it comes to the ion. This actually makes a difference in my playing. The gun holds up well during play and i didnt have any problems at the field. You might expierience some minor problems but mainly it is all good. The asa frequently becomes loose so get another one.
Conclusion: BUY IT. it has no major flaws
Rating:
9 out of 10Last edited on Tuesday, December 22nd, 2009 at 12:54 pm PST
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dman12564 Friday, December 26th, 2008
Period of
Product Use:
Less than a month3 of 3 people found this review helpful.

Paintball
Experience:
6 months
Similar
Products Used:
spyder sonix
smartparts vibe
smartparts sp-1
a5
98 custom
Marker Setup: cp reg
trinity body kit
crossfire 68/4500 high pressure tank
blackheart board
firebolt
Recommended
Upgrades:
new board
more than a 3000 tank
new trigger
a nonplastic bodykit
Strengths: Easy trigger pull
Its beautiful
Weaknesses: The board has tar in the groves
Review: The gun is just dropdead georgeous. Super nice paint schem. The trigger is nice but the grips are wack. The board is ok but can be updated. It has tar in the board ports. I sugest the blackheart board or virtue. The stock barrel is nice it will put paint where you want it.
Conclusion: Nice gun needs upgrades
Rating:
8 out of 10
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AsphyxiateHeart Sunday, December 14th, 2008
Period of
Product Use:
1 year
Paintball
Experience:
3 years
Similar
Products Used:
Diablo Wrath, Smart Parts Sp-1
Marker Setup: Smart Parts Ion Xe w/ BlackHeart board, Pure Energy HPA 88ci 4500PSI w/ remote coil, Special Ops Tactical Vest. Empire E-vents mask.
Recommended
Upgrades:
Blackheart Board is all there really is, but it isn't necessary, it helps greatly with battery life. Possibly an Apex barrel which will be my next investment.
Strengths: Speed, lightweight, Extremely reliable in all weather conditions.
Weaknesses: Lack of upgrades. (Which may be a good thing)
Review: I've loved my Ion ever since they day I pulled it out of the box. It has consistantly worked for me when all other guns have failed and even pulls through in the cold weather. The Xe version of the Ion makes it very simple to clean as well. I have taken this gun through rain, I fell in a sinkhole out in the swamp at Michigan's Hell Survivors field, and it rolled down an icy hill with me in the winter. This gun can take a beating and keep on ticking. It is extremely accurate as far as a paintball gun goes, and on a normal day I get no breaks in the barrel (except if I get a case of bad paint). The low pressure firing makes is very delicate on balls and makes it so you can even use cheap wal-mart paint and be accurate. (Though I don't, but I have when I first got it just to see.)
Conclusion: For scenario players and speedballers alike, This marker is reliable and will always be there when you need it. I reccomend it for all players, however don't expect to be fighting against a flat-line unless you pick up an Apex barrel for it. A good gun for players old and new alike.
Rating:
9 out of 10
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tehpaintballer Sunday, September 14th, 2008
Period of
Product Use:
Less than a month10 of 10 people found this review helpful.

Paintball
Experience:
1 year
Similar
Products Used:
Spyder Xtra
Ion
Marker Setup: Ion Xe
Halo B hopper
Clamping feedneck
Kingman Java 48/3000 HPA tank
Dye rhino tank cover-Blue
Recommended
Upgrades:
Clamping feedneck (If you wanna get an electronic hopper
Strengths: Everything. Great accuracy. Easy maintenance
Weaknesses: Nothing i saw
Review: I used this gun and I must say wow. Great accuracy. I could shot someone from the other side of the field. Great air consistancy. Didnt have to fill my tank for 4 hours. Doesnt chop paint at all whatsoever. Super easy maintenance. Comes with everything. Pretty cheap only $225.
Conclusion: I would recommend this gun for everyone. Great gun. The best ive ever used. This gun shows that you dont need a super $700 gun to be good. WOULD RECOMMEND TO EVERYONE!!!!!!
Rating:
10 out of 10
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elcheezzy Tuesday, September 9th, 2008
Period of
Product Use:
3 months
Paintball
Experience:
1 year
Marker Setup: smart parts ion xe body kit red
lucky unitec barrel
halo B
CP sling blade trigger
flame drop forward(don't know what company)
pure energy carbon 48/4500
virtue 2.0 easy on
Recommended
Upgrades:
something besides the duck bill
feed neck
QEV and fire bolt
Strengths: Can upgrade to be a very nice marker.
Weaknesses: How it comes stock but can fix easily.
Review: I think this is a great marker for beginner or advanced. you can keep it as a cheap marker of make it really high performance. The bolt out back it a very cool design and comes in handy. I have only chopped once in the marker and it was because I let my friend use it and he used crap paintball that had a lot of dimples and breaks in the bag.
Conclusion: Get this gun if you are just starting out or if you want to upgrade it and make it a very unique marker. I give it a 9 because I think it should cost less for the stock performance.
Rating:
9 out of 10
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CKvBP Saturday, August 23rd, 2008
Period of
Product Use:
6 months43 of 43 people found this review helpful.

Paintball
Experience:
2 years
Similar
Products Used:
Smart Parts Vibe
Spyder MR-2 (no Eyes version)
Marker Setup: Halo Loader
HP Air
Bone Stock
Recommended
Upgrades:
None (Upgrades quickly get into cost of vastly better marker)
Strengths: BOB
Elegant Design
Shoots good for the $
Reliable
Eyes
Weaknesses: Battery
On Switch
Microswitches
trigger
Upgrade Cost
Review: First a bit of context: I purchased an Ion XE after realizing that mil-sim markers are stupid. I love woodsball but gained no benefit from a heavy, bulky marker whose key features were to be designed like a battlefield rifle (which are designed to contend with issues such as aiming at long range, recoil, heat dissipation, among others which dictate there shape, feel, and design) which a paintball marker clearly is not.

The Ion XE is a light, simple, clean marker which outperforms pretty much all the milsim markers out there (except maybe BTs new Invert Mini based marker). It is durable, can survive being rained on, bashed into trees, fallen on, rolled over, or pretty much anything reasonable you can throw at it. As long as its cleaned, and all the fittings are tight its never had issues.

The Good:
- The Bolt out back is great. I've seen how older ions are serviced and this is vastly superior. I also take a key interest at the field in how other markers come apart, and I've seen a few equal, but non-exceed the Ion XEs simplicity.
- The Ion XE's design is simply elegant. There are really only 2 major moving parts, the bolt and the solenoid. Two screws get you into the real meat of the marker if you have any desire too and your presented with a few fittings, some hoses, a solenoid, and the eyes. Thats about it.
- for the price, the Ion XE shoots incredibly well without any upgrades. The Ion XE will outshoot stock 90% of the markers that hit the woodsball field. Balls fly reasonable strait with no breaks and the stock regulator sees about + or - 5fps on the field crono once broken in. Another 5% of those markers (low end protos, minis, and the like) it will compete with, but wont quite match. Meanwhile the last 5% of those markers will totally destroy it, but most cost a anywhere from $500-$1200 more. I have seen some higher end guns fire faster, with a more linear flight path, more consistently, and at longer ranges. I have had high-end markers hit me five times in the same two inch circular spot on my hand through a small window at a steep angle at ranges that the Ion XE was only able to respond with a two to three foot diameter firing circle in return, despite having a easier firing window. If you have the extra 150 maybe get a Invert Mini or Dangerous Powers G3 or something on those lines. If you have the other 1200, I do not really feel qualified to recommend, but maybe an Ego. If you do not, the Ion XE is great.
- I've never had a failure of the ion that was not caused by me. So the reliability is great. I've never had to leave it in my equipment box to grab another marker.
- Eyes do wonders, apart from maybe the SP Vibe/ SP-1's low pressure bolt system, I wouldn't own a marker without them. Ability to turn them off on the fly is a bonus.

The Mediocre:
- The Air Efficiency of the Ion XE is not bad, its just not amazing. I use a 68/4500 HP tank with my ion, always filled to the top. I normally carry 4 pods and a hopper about 700 paintballs. I can fire all of them and still have 1000PSI left. So thats about 200 paintballs fired per 1000PSI. Not too shabby really. I have never counted, but the Ion XE will fire a fair amount of paint on that last 1000PSI of air without issue or visible drop-off till the tank hits just a hair over whatever pressure you have your regulator set to (mines usually running around 180PSI for 280fps) . Then things fall apart quite rapidly. So you might be able to get away with a smaller tank, and the same amount of paint that I carry.
- Watch out for the Body. The Body is a very strong plastic and rubber housing for the breach of the gun, and also serves as an attachment for the feed neck and frame. All the while holding the dents and the eyes into the breach. Its an effective system but has a few minor issues to watch out for. If you let either of the two screws at the front or rear of it get lose it can slide a little. This can produce a lip between the body and the breach at the feed neck that balls can be caught on and thus not feed smoothly into the marker.
- I pretty much clean my marker before I take it out on the field. I play about twice a month. Over the past 9 months my Bolt Out Back has gotten well scuffed, but this is purely a cosmetic issue.
- A lot of people seem to hate this pressure fitting feed neck. I really like it. Its simple, has no bolts that can come loose (and thus lost) like clamping feed-necks, and holds my hopper insanely tight. A little to tight as it turns out. Despite removing one o-ring to loosen the fit, lubricating the feed neck to ease hopper removal, and sanding down my Halo B's feed-neck, I have managed to break the threadlock that holds it in. Not a major problem at all, as you simple screw the feed-neck back in, but its annoying when you unscrew your feed-neck while trying to wrestle your hopper on. The manual clearly states that you should only turn the hopper counter-clockwise during removal to prevent just this problem, but I have had my hopper so utterly stuck, that I had to wiggle it out thus breaking the threadlock.
- The Micro Line fittings are apparently threadlocked in with some incredibly strong stuff (red threadlock?). I attempted to remove the fitting from the bottom of my regulator and totaly destroyed the soft brass fitting without getting it off. That was a $45 dollar mistake as I have to replace that part of the regulator, at that price I might as well spend the other $30 and get a new one.
- I also think the Micro Line is ugly and could be streamlined better as seen on the EOS/Vibe/SP-1. The EOS/Vibe/SP-1 has it strait down the centerline with very nice fittings. This doesn't get in the way, and I think looks better. Its a minor annoyance.
- I do not like the fact that I need a wrench to adjust my regulators output pressure. Every other marker on the planet uses a hex wrench, not to mention that every other part of the ion is serviced with a hex wrench. Its just one more tool I have to carry. And again, the EOS/Vibe/SP-1 all have hex wrench based adjustments, which is a much nicer looking system, and quite frankly easier to use.
-The Dents work just fine, but the rubber wears down fairly fast, requiring replacement, which could be a hassle for the technically unadventurous.

The Ugly:
- The stock battery is absolute rubbish. This seems to be a major issue with smart parts products in general. I have known quite a few people who thought there marker was broken (me included, twice!), because of this foul battery. The marker simply does not operate with it. It will fail to cycle and appear to get jammed. I suggest a campaign: everyone should send the battery back to smart parts and demand they pay to recycle this battery that seems to have no purpose apart from helping destroy the planet. They really should save themselves some money, there customers the technical difficulty, and there tech support guys a lot of phone calls and simply not include this useless battery. If I knew how to put this in giant bold text I would, in hopes smart parts would read it, and act! Note: I really do know how to put this in giant bold text, but its against my sensibilities.
- Stock On/Off Switch, Oh how do I hate the. The Stock On/Off switch is simply a printed plastic sticker with a bump of soft rubber glued to both sides. One on the exterior of the marker to give you something to press on, and one on the interior of the marker to push down on the micro-switch. Unfortunately, its is insanely hard to press. The only way I could do it on my marker was with my fingernail, which quickly destroyed the soft rubber. Then it begins to slide off the marker as paintball goo eats away at the adhesive. Ultimately forcing you to get a new one at some insidious cost (~$10 for a upgraded one). And if you think I'm starting to rant I haven't even begun! Ok, lets look at this from a manufacturing standpoint. Other smart parts markers have a very simple, good feeling, good looking, small, and durable plastic button. This button is most likely made via plastic injection molding. A one step process. Meanwhile, smart parts has to pay someone to print in mass the plastic power switch sheet found on the Ion XE, then cut it out, then glue two rubber nubs on it, then apply adhesive. Printing in itself is expensive. I cannot imagine that it is more cost effective to make this dysfunctional glorified sticker than it is to mold the lovely little plastic button thats found on basically all their other markers. A button that fits into the Ion XE with zero modification and is sold as an upgrade. The only advantage to them is to ripping off their customers to sell a $10 pice of plastic, a bad ploy, as it seems most paintball stores do not seem to carry smart parts upgrade button and instead carry the numerous alternate 3rd party replacements; which are in of themselves slightly more glorified stickers. Smart Parts, I plead with you, get rid of this button. If I knew how to make this any more scathing I would.
- The Micro-switch method of programing your marker is obtuse at best. Anything that requires you to press something with 'micro' in its name a billion times while trying to interpret the flashing of equally microscopic lights; all the while counting how many billion times you pressed it, and multiply some number in your head to determine how many fractions of a second you just adjusted your dwell, only to realize you accidently had it on the wrong adjustment mode, and screaming as you attempt to re-input the factory defaults by repeating the process over again isn't a good thing.
-The Trigger is sloppy but functional. Unfortunately as its made of , what to be fair is a strong, plastic with a hole drilled into it at a particularly vulnerable point so an adjustment screw could be placed into it; mine broke at said point when it was hit by a paintball. Frankly, the best thing that ever happened to my marker, as the metal replacement trigger I replaced it with is quite posh.
- Lastly, you can dump insane amounts of money into upgrading an Ion, or for that matter any other marker. Just make sure you realize that after a handful of even some of the cheeper upgrades (QEV ~ $20 ~ $30 feed neck, ~$30 trigger, ~ $10 switch, ~$50 bolt for a total of ~$140 ), plus the Ion XE ( ~$270) your already to the price of a higher end marker that will probably be better out of the box than the upgraded Ion XE. In-fact, that plus a better electronics kit (~$140 for a total upgrade cost of ~$280 and the Ion XE for ~ $270 = ~ $550 ) are the cost of a better marker and another nice toy! Simply put buy the Ion XE for what it is, not for what it can be.
Conclusion: Overall the Ion XE is a good, reliable, fairly sturdy marker, with excellent performance to cost. Although perhaps not class leading, it holds its own against even marginally more expensive markers. Overall I'm very satisfied, apart from the inexcusably bad battery and criminally ineffective power switch. That being said, there are vastly better markers on the market, but they are also had for more money. If you want one of these better markers, do not buy an Ion XE with the plan of upgrading it into one, the cost of doing so adds up at an incredible rate, and there is just no sense at making a good marker into a great marker, when you could almost have had had both at the same cost. Get the Ion XE for what it is, a very competent marker for ~$275.
Rating:
8 out of 10Last edited on Sunday, August 24th, 2008 at 1:34 am PST
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