Bite The Bullet
Vote on it - The most versatile AEG? (1999-11-02)To loyal readers of this column, I must first extend an apology for skipping a week. At the risk of opening myself up to a hose of flames, I'll venture this week to address the age old question of "Which is the best airsoft AEG?".
In my own humble opinion, the MP5SD series satisfies this question best. If you had asked me which AEG was the best in a particular category, I may have answered otherwise but in terms of versatility, realism, ability to take all sorts of accessories, upgrades in power, and so on, the MP5 series has withstood the test of time as a clear winner. Its continued popularity only supports this theory (trust us on this way...we know what we're talking about!).
Many of you will undoubtedly ask why? When I classify an AEG as the best, I believe that means an AEG that can grow with you as you become more experienced in the sport. The MP5 series weapons can take a large assortment of add-ons including all sorts of scopes, lighting accessories, and other fancy (and most often not necessarily needed) equipment. Now most weapons can take this stuff easily using universal mounts, but being able to tack on a ridiculous amount of accessories and still have a gun that looks balanced, integrated, and basically damn good looking, is another story. OK so it's not as heavy as the real thing and some might point out that "Hey, the CAR-15 weighs exactly as much as the real steel and has more metal parts"...but hey, I can tell you from experience that the MP5 series is 50 times if not more popular than these other more "realistic" weapons. Of course, apart from the ability to take accessories, there is undeniably an insane amount of replacement parts for the MP5 series such as gearboxes, power upgrades, metal parts...so much that you can replace EVERY single piece on the stock gun into metal (which I've done and feel quite silly sometimes lugging around an insanely heavy piece of airsoft while battling for hours under intense tropical sun).
Well alright the MP5 series is definitely a winner but why did we single out the SD series? Simple. The SD is the only AEG that can take a tracer unit as a direct replacement to it's stock silencer and therefore keep the stock look of the gun even after installation. The result is an incredibly real looking airsoft (at night of course) when the "silencer" is flashing off rounds in the opponents face. Shoot the tracer mounted SD in a dark room and the walls around you flash from the "report" of the tracer! (Very cool looking I must add!) And for you folks who don't care about the tracer, the silencer gives you the option to extend the inner barrel out to the tip of the silencer. Now while you lose the silencer effect, seasoned airsofters know that a longer inner barrel means increased accuracy and power. Finally for those who have bought our theory thus far and are wondering which model they should get...upgrade freaks should opt for the SD5 such that the solid stock can accommodate a 8.4v 2000mah or 3000mah to push that really stiff spring. For those moderate folks who want to upgrade to about a 210% (or not even at all), I would recommend the SD6 for it's increased versatility and (in our opinion) better looks. The foregip on the SD6 can only take a 1500mah or 1700mah battery that has less "pushing" power.
Having said all this, does this mean you should run out and grab one for yourself? It's a matter of preference and we've found that the latest infatuation with RIS rail systems has made pretty much every airsoft AEG as versatile as the MP5 in terms of accessories. But do they look as good?
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. :-)
By Tom Stace (October 2003)
Best AEG? After reading an article on the best AEG I was very dissapointed as the MP5SD came in on top. I am dissapointed because I own the P90 TR and I believe(along with many others) that it far exceeds most other AEGs. Why? The silencer on the SD series does not work! a working silencer can be added but it costs. The P90 TR comes with working silencer and no replacement is needed. As we all know a longer barrel usually means greater accuracy. The SD has a 229.5 barrel but the P90 has a 247 barrel lenght. MUCH LONGER = more accuracy in a much smaller frame. The motor in the MP5SD is only an EG700 but the P90TR is EG1000. The P90 far exceeds the ROF(rate of fire) of the MP5SD. It is true that the MP5 series of weapons have many accessories and add-ons but many are not functional and most hard to attach to the gun. The P90 comes with a triple rail mount which is very easy to use. The accessories are easy to install and almost all are functional. I also believe the MP5s can start to look 'tacky.' This is obviously only my opinion and I am sure many of you out there reading this dissagree with me but I also know many of you agree with me. I am not saying you should all go out and splash out on a P90TR but I think anyone looking for an AEG should consider purchasing this Bullpup SMG for the reasons above. Thankyou for reading this article
Thanks to Tom for pointing this out. This article was written in 1999 and is probably out-dated in its views on which AEG is the most versatile. Clearly many new AEGs have been released during this time and many other options exist. :-)