Boise, ID (PRWEB) December 5, 2007
This Christmas, many shoppers trying to purchase a gift for their recreational or extreme sport enthusiasts are questioning whether or not they should invest in airsoft or paintball. To meet this demand, AirSOCOM, a leading online hobby retailer, depicts the differences between the two sports to help answer these frequently asked questions.
Airsoft, like paintball, is a modern combat sport or hobby in which enthusiasts practice eliminating opponents or practice hitting specific targets. However, there are many factors that differentiate the two sports and ultimately lend to the gaining popularity of airsoft. Some of these factors include; the guns or actual gun components, the ammo, the maneuverability, the style of play, the maintenance, and the cost associated with each sport as well as the safety issues of each sport.
The guns and gun components used in airsoft and paintball differ greatly. The guns are far more realistic than paint ball as the airsoft sport hinges on the development of authentic re-creations or licensed replicas of firearms where, other than the legally mandated bright orange tip, airsoft guns are often hard to tell from their real-world counterparts. In fact, airsoft combines military re-creation with the actuality of simulated combat. For law enforcement professionals, airsoft is an ideal training device since airsoft guns can accurately replicate the same weight, appearance, action, and in some cases blowback effect as the genuine weapon.
Airsoft is used more in military and law enforcement reenactments than paintball. The components of the guns also differ. For example, paintball guns have a hopper that you pour paintball ammo into and airsoft guns use clips instead, which makes loading and unloading typically easier in airsoft as well as making it easier to carry around extra clips.
Ammunition used for paintball and the airsoft sport are also considerably different. In paintball, paintballs are used and plastic pellets or BB's are used in airsoft, however, some airsoft guns are also open breeched for use of 6 mm paintball pellets. During game play, the type of ammo used is an important thing to consider for having to pack it around as well as for the overall gaming strategy. Paintballs are usually larger in size and sometimes can be dodged. Airsoft pellets are too small to see at a high-speed, and dodging is basically out of the question. Airsoft pellets, in many cases, can be more accurate than paintballs, so it may not take as much time for a game to end as it might with paintball. The speed, in FPS (feet per second), of airsoft is also usually higher (between 300fps and 400fps) but some airsoft guns can also be as low as 120fps, which is considered as more of a close-quarter gun. Overall, in the case of ammunition, airsoft has the advantage.
Another factor to keep in mind is maneuverability. Paintball guns are big and bulky with the hopper and external CO2 or compressed air containers. However, some advanced apparatuses have been developed where CO2 tanks can be carried on the backs with a tube from the paintball gun coiling around the player and into the tank. Most airsoft guns, on the other hand, are definitely easy to hold and easy to run with; making it clear that airsoft has the advantage in maneuverability.
Style of play also greatly differs between airsoft and paintball from tactical gear to even the location in which the sports are played. Airsoft players typically wear camouflage or ghillie suits and military gear that closely replicate a soldier of a certain war period, while many paintball enthusiasts wear brightly colored extreme sport clothing. Paint ball players also must wear full face protection in the form of paint ball masks, while airsoft enthusiasts generally only need protective goggles to protect their eyes. As for the location, many paintball games are played as speedball games on designated paintball fields and airsoft is often played in large areas of wooded land to lend towards a more scenario based type of game play. For the most part, airsoft is much cleaner than paintball and therefore can also be played in indoor areas that are more confined.
Another important thing to consider about both sports is the maintenance required. Most of the time, paintball guns have more parts than airsoft guns, and they may be more costly to repair. However, both kinds of guns can break if not properly maintained. Depending on how much an enthusiast plays, paintball guns need to be oiled, cleaned, refilled with CO2, and paintball guns need the barrel regularly cleaned. If an enthusiast has a gas airsoft gun, that will also needed to be refilled, but the electric airsoft guns and spring airsoft guns do not require gas. In relation to maintenance costs, there are other costs associated with each sport as well. Airsoft BB's are much cheaper than paintballs, as they generally run around $5 for 2000 or so BB's. Finally, the airsoft guns are generally cheaper than paintball guns too.
Finally, the other factor that has propelled recent airsoft demand is the recognition of being seen as a safer combat sport than paintball. Airsoft rounds are a lesser threat to players because they are less painful than paintball rounds. Paintball rounds contain more mass and therefore carry more kinetic energy than airsoft rounds, which can leave more bruising. Airsoft rounds, on the other hand, are smaller and hence have less kinetic energy. For more information about the airsoft sport, or in regards to airsoft guns, please visit AirSOCOM.com or call Caitlin Gray at # 800-933-3640.
As leading online hobby retailer, AirSOCOM, recently re-launched their website to accommodate airsoft enthusiasts of all levels. As resource for airsoft guns and tactical gear, AirSOCOM features officially licensed replica brands such as Colt, Sig Sauer, Desert Eagle, Smith & Wesson, DPMS Panther Arms, UZI, Thompson, Taurus, Beretta, Kalashnikov and more. AirSOCOM offers the most accurate airsoft guns for casual play or full blown military simulations with free shipping on orders over $50.00. For more information about the airsoft sport, or in regards to airsoft guns, please visit AirSOCOM.com or call Caitlin Gray at # 800-933-3640.