Gas vs Electric vs Spring Airsoft – How about Electric Blowback Guns?

Looking for a great airsoft gun that’s reliable, good-looking, and gives good performance? “Hell yeah, what else I could be here for?”

But you are not sure which type of gun you should go with; spring-based? Electric powered? Or gas loaded?  Let me tell you something:

Worry not!

Because we will be answering all your questions in this post by comparing Gas vs Electric vs Spring, along with the Electric Blowback airsoft guns. We have also noted down the pros and cons of each type to make the decision-making process simple for you.

Let’s get started

Gas-vs-Electric-vs-Spring-vs-Electric-Blowback

Comparison of Gas vs Electric vs Spring vs Electric Blowback Airsoft Guns

Here’s a quick comparison table for you in case you are short on time, otherwise you are welcome to read the complete article.

FeatureSpring BasedGas PoweredAutomatic Electric GunsEelectric Blowback
PriceCheapModerate Expensive Expensive
Additional CostsNoneYesYesYes
Additional ItemsNoneGas cartridgeBatteryBattery
Maintenance required? Not muchYesNot muchNot much
Upgradeability YesYesYesYes
Weather IntolleranceNoneFreezing coldRainRain
WeightLightRealistic ModerateRealistic
Firing ModesSingleMostly semi-autoSingle, auto, semi-autoSingle, auto, semi-auto
RecoilLittle to nonRealistic NoneRealistic
Look and feel Good Realistic Not greatRealistic
Good forStarters and SnipersProfessional PlayersAllAll

1) Spring-loaded Airsoft Guns

Spring airsoft guns use the compressed spring mechanism to shoot BBs down the barrel, it needs to be pumped or cocked back (in case of shotguns and pistols) or set in place by the bolt in case of airsoft snipers. Unlike the AEGs or Gas powered replicas which use battery or green gas to shoot, the spring-powered airsoft weapons work purely on mechanical processes.

Bolt action airsoft snipers are loved by all in the category of spring-loaded guns. As the rate of fire depends on how fast you can reload/pump/cock, so it’s obvious that it’s only recommended for snipers as they don’t have usually loads of enemies coming towards them.

 Pros 

  • Comparatively cheap, and the best option for the starter airsoft players
  • No worry about carrying extra battery or CO2, you can use it as much as you want only if you have enough BBs
  • Since its no battery or gas-dependent that the battery could get wet or the gas could freeze, so no worries of any weather conditions
  • Lightweight, have little to no recoil, and open for usually any type of upgrade you want
  • Certain spring-based airsoft sniper rifles could shoot as higher as 700 FPS while this range is 300 – 400 FPS on average.

 Cons 

  • Needs the gun to be manually cocked each time you want to shoot, making you at disadvantage against automatic or semi-auto gun holders.
  • The spring cocking sound can give away your location.
  • Most of the build materials of these replicas are plastic which means they are easily breakable, and they cannot be fixed later once they broke.
  • The bolt action sniper rifles couldn’t be used to hit players in close proximity as it hurts like hell.

 

2) Gas Powered Airsoft Guns

Unlike the spring-loaded airsoft guns which use only the mechanical system, these guns use gas as a propellant. Since the gas-powered airsoft guns were one of the first few airsoft guns ever made, they are also called “classic airsoft guns”.

In the airsoft realm, most commonly used gas powered guns are pistols.

They usually shoot faster and harder than the spring powered guns. But only a bunch of gas guns can shoot fully automatic, most of them are semi-automatic.

The most common gases used to power these guns are green gas and CO2. The CO2 gives high FPS than the green gas or propane and can be used both in rifles as well as pistols. Other least used gases are nitrogen and HFC134a refrigerant.

The use of “Red Gas” or R-12 liquid propellant is strictly forbidden by US EPA regulatory agency so never ever think about using any of those. Stick only to the legal gases such as CO2 or green gas etc.

 Pros 

  • Semi-auto and full-auto firing capabilities (better than spring based guns)
  • Has the most realistic weight, feel, and the bolt action with locking back on empty magazine features, almost similar to the real-life steel guns
  • More recoil
  • The gas blowback (GBB) pistols are love 😍 it automatically puts the next bb in place after firing the first one and that’s why it is the number one option of professional airsoft players
  • Another reason people prefer GBB guns is their easily adjustable velocity feature
  • Cheap price tags compared to the Automatic Electric Airsoft Guns

 Cons 

  • The gas could freeze or its density may decrease in cold weather
  • Extra cost of purchasing gas cartridges
  • Need of carrying spare gas canisters in case if the current cartridge finishes up
  • Many gases are illegal to use because they aren’t environmental friendly
  • If you choose to go with propane gas then the propane adapter would be also required
  • There are chances of being spotted easily if gas production is too much.
  • Just like the real world weapons, the gas-powered guns also need proper cleanliness and maintenance after its use.

Read: How to be an Airsoft Sniper – 101 Tips and Guide

 

3) Automatic Electric Guns (AEGs)

Automatic Electric Guns or AEGs are the most widely used airsoft guns on battlefields around the world. They are mostly replicas of real-world firearms and available in numerous amount of different shapes, sizes, and colors.

AEGs are powered by an electric battery and a motor, the battery powers up the motor which creates an air blast to propel the BBs down the barrel. And obviously, the battery will need to be charged in order to make the gun work.

Just like the above two types, the AEGs also contain the spring. But it features a gearbox as well which comprises 3 gears that compress the piston and then releases it to cause a powerful shot.

 Pros 

  • Their body is usually made of metal for the sake of realistic feel
  • No need of cocking for each shot like you do in spring guns.
  • It offers all three firing modes; single, semi-auto, and full-auto.
  • The electric assault rifles or the SMGs are the preferred guns of most to use in close-quarter combats
  • Independent of the cold and hot weathers

 Cons 

  • The battery needs charging up after certain uses.
  • The battery needs to be protected in rainy weather as it may become faulty if gets wet.
  • Some batteries give good backup while others less, so you need to be careful when buying one.
  • The electric pistols look and feel like a toy.
  • The magazine’s place is taken by a battery in electric pistols.

Also Read: Best Airsoft Sniper Scopes 2021 – 7 Amazing Scopes Reviewed

 

4) Electric Blowback Airsoft Guns

Electric Blowback (EBB) airsoft guns are high-end AEGs with the additional feature of blowback. The feature is introduced in electric guns because people loved it in the gas-powered weapons, it gives a pretty realistic feel and look like those of a real gun. But obviously, the kick won’t be strong in replicas as compared to the real steel firearms.

They use a 9.6-volt rechargeable battery which is upgradable to LiPo for better performance in terms of increasing the RPS (rounds per second).

Now let’s take a look at the upsides and downsides of the EBB guns, most of these remain the same as those of normal AEGs.

 Pros 

  • Usually comes in sturdy polycarbonate plastic
  • Increased weight and looks more real than the traditional AEGs.
  • Comes in all three modes of firing; single, semi-auto, and fully automatic.
  • Easily upgradeable for improved performance.

 Cons 

  • The blowback feature usually takes more electric power and thus drains the battery fast
  • It also puts extra stress on the gearbox which may cause a shorter lifespan
  • This technology has not yet greatly developed so the blowback feature can be disabled when you try to modify the gun

 

Final Words

As we discussed in this post, each type of these guns come with its own benefits and drawbacks. Spring guns are good for sniping while AEGs are preferred in CQB. Spring base guns are cheap while AEGs will leave a hole in your pocket. Both AEGs and Gas-powered guns have some weather limitations.

Each of these types is not for everyone, and that’s why we ended up writing this post to help you weigh your preferences and make a wise decision in getting yourself the best airsoft gun.

If you have any questions or doubts, then don’t forget to ask them in the comments below.

Share this post with airsoft enthusiasts as sharing is caring.

Happy Airsofting!

A Navy Seal veteran who has served multiple international tours to Somalia, Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan. He is also an airsoft enthusiast who enjoys playing, sharing his knowledge and expertise of the vast airsoft realm.

Leave a Comment