If you play a lot of paintball (you’re reading a paintball blog so you obviously do, right?), then you have probably found yourself interested in filling your own tanks at home. Traveling to your nearest fill station can get expensive, time-consuming, and an inconvenience. Moreover, if you currently live in the middle of nowhere like I used to, then it becomes unfeasible to drive dozens of miles round trip to fill up your tank. I know where you’re coming from: I used to have to drive 80 miles round trip in my younger years just to get a tank refilled. Believe me when I say I would have seriously considered giving away one of my body parts to be able to fill up my tank at home.
What’s up with the Tippmann Cronus? We took a quick look at it in CBTC #3 a few days ago, now you can see Jeff giving you the full rundown. Check out the video below.
A lot of people have been calling and emailing to ask what this new paintball gun is all about. As we mentioned a few days ago, it doesn’t have revolutionary internals—it’s a Tippmann 98 in a new body. We aren’t encouraging you to hate it. That’s actually a good thing. It’s actually the best paintball gun for beginners. Here’s why.
Reason 1: Reliability of Tippmann 98
Every paintball field everywhere rents Tippmann 98s. Reliability is the reason. Paintball fields want people to get into paintball; they want renters to have a good time. The Tippmann 98 is one of the most popular paintball guns of all time because it reliably produces good experiences.
They are actually hard to break. With limited maintenance they will run forever. The best paintball gun for beginners is the one that will work every time and is easy to take care of. The Cronus doesn’t require advanced mechanical knowledge to use or take apart. It will stand up to abuse. It will work weekend after weekend. The internals are proven—that’s why they rent 98s at every paintball field you go to.
Reason 2: Customization
The Cronus is the best paintball gun for beginners because you can customize it to suit your needs. The biggest problem we see with many entry-level paintball guns are simplistic “what you see is what you get” designs. Most inexpensive paintball guns come in one-size-fits-all packages that can’t be easily modified.
The Cronus is different. The tactical design can be customized to fit a variety of play styles. We’ll talk more about how we like it setup later—for now consider this important point: You don’t want to match your play style to your equipment, you want equipment that matches you. The Cronus includes more modification features than any inexpensive marker we’ve seen.
On top of being customizable, the Cronus shoots comfortably. The grip fits “right,” balance is good with the stock attached running remote, or with the stock removed and a tank attached.
Reason 3: Price
We don’t need to say more about this. The price is right. It’s a $79.00 paintball gun that you can extract much more than $79.00 of function from. My Tippmann 98 is 13 years old. It still works. Don’t knock something that is built on a reliable design.
How Should I set It Up?
Do you need the tactical version? Should you run a remote? These are the types of questions people have been asking alongside comments about the Tippmann 98 internals. The answer depends on your play style and the model you buy.
Removing the stock from the tactical version and attaching a tank places the marker at a perfect height for using the sights. Using the stock and tank is problematic—together they just get in the way. Another problem is that with a mask on, you can’t really see down the sights while using the stock. If you want to use the sights, take the stock off and use a tank. If you’re going to use the stock, run remote. Jeff provides a more extensive explanation in the video review.
The Best Beginner Paintball Gun?
Sure. If you are looking for something flashy the Cronus isn’t it. For a new player who wants something that is going to be fun, comfortable, customizable, and work every time you pull the trigger, the Tippmann Cronus can’t be beat. The people that will knock the Tippmann 98 internals are likely to already own a flashy expensive electronic marker. This paintball gun was built for beginners who want quality, reliability, and functionality at a rock bottom price.
Order the tactical or basic version now from our website. We think you should run it with HPA using NInja’s 48 cu tank for the best affordable results. If you’re going to run remote, get a good harness like the NXe 4+1 (at $25 it can’t be beat) and a decent remote line with disconnect.
Yeah, we get it – that new PS4 game is looking pretty fly (or that Xbox One/PC game, whichever army you’re in). But come on guys, what would you rather have? A video game that’s going to get stale after a few weeks, or a gift that will keep on giving like a 3000psi compressed air tank?
Just like us humans need clothes (some certainly more than others), so too does your tank need to cover up. Most of us prefer to wear at least some sort of clothing when we’re out in public, and your tank is the same way. Besides, if you were playing in a game of paintball, wouldn’t you want to wear some sort of clothing? Of course you would (and if you think otherwise, you’re crazy). Your tank is the exact same way. It wants covering, it wants to be warm, and it wants to be protected from stray paint in the event that it’s smacked.
The Tippmann Cronus is available and in stock now. It comes in two versions—the Cronus Tactical and the Cronus Basic. The tactical has a kick ass design—it’s the model you want if you order this marker. We’re going to get to a full video review later on, but for now you can catch a glimpse of the Tippmann Cronus in CBTC #3 on YouTube:
So, what’s the deal? Is obvious that milsim is popular and the tactical style is “cool” right now. Tippmann is picking up on it and released the Cronus Tactical to tap into the market with an inexpensive milsim paintball gun.
The Cronus is made from a high-impact composite black and tan boy (we might just spray paint ours all black). The tactical version includes a mock silencer, 6-position stock, vertical grip, and a carry handle with built-in sights. There are four rails for attaching AR-style accessories. The barrel is ported on the end. The gas line is internal and the bolt is an in-line design.
Bottom line: The Tippmann Cronus is basically a Tippmann 98 crammed into a new shell. It’s a proven design that some people love and other people love to hate. Like it or not—it’s still a quality marker. It shoots paint, it’s durable, and—for $109.00—it does it in affordable style.
The body on the Cronus Tactical adds a good amount of functionality and a cool look (as soon as we paint it all black). It’s comfortable and it feels well-balanced.
The Tippmann Cronus is the perfect marker for a friend who wants to give paintball a try. It has the “look” everyone is after, the price is right, and with proven internals it will be durable enough to stand up to some good abuse. Some of us still have Tippmann 98s that are over 15 years old and still chugging out paint like the day they were new.
I remember one afternoon after finishing a day of paintball, a friend and I began sword fighting with our squeegees after cleaning our barrels. The fight consisted of the usual moves: sword fighting from behind, the ‘spin attack into throat’ move, the ‘belly stab,’ and of course the ‘stab to crotch,’ move. For some reason, I thought it would be a good idea to spin around and grab my squeegee with both hands and attack my friend like I was King Arthur using the legendary sword Excalibur. I hit him in the back so hard, the squeegee broke in half.
Virtue’s new PF Pods—the “PF” stands for Press Flick—are innovative and excellent. We understand what you are thinking: “How can a paintball pod be innovative? It just holds paint.” Trust me, we thought the same thing at first. Check out our review video where we ran these new pods through a series of “unique” tests:
The biggest advantage to the Virtue PF Pods is durability. We performed a number of tests to compare the Virtue pods to a standard pod. We dropped them from shoulder level to concrete. We dropped them from 35 feet to our warehouse floor. We even put the Virtue PF in a vice and turned it until we couldn’t turn it anymore. Even flatting the pod in a vice couldn’t shatter the durable plastic. The Virtue PF didn’t crack and it returned to an altered albeit useable shape.
It only broke once and that’s after we abused the hell out of it.
The Virtue PF Pod comes in two sizes—135 and 165. The 135 is 2-inches shorter than a normal pod, but it holds the same amount of paint. The 165 is the same length as a normal pod—it holds 20% more paint. The difference between normal pods and the Virtue PF is in the shape of the cylinder. The Virtue pods don’t taper over the length of the tube, allowing for higher capacity at the same length.
The “Press Flick” tab is a fast opening top that will press or flick open. It works great, however we did notice that it can open itself when dropped from 35-feet to our warehouse floor. The top is just as durable as the plastic tube.
Which One is For Me?
It really depends on your play style and hopper size. If you like to shoot paint and you have a large hopper, get the 165—especially if you already have a normal sized pod. The 135 has a slimmer profile. If 2-inches of pod height makes a difference for you and you enjoy “slimming” your profile to reduce hit area, the 135 is a good choice. Both sizes come in a variety of colors.
The only downside we saw with the 135 was pack eject compatibility. Because it is shorter than a normal pod, it doesn’t eject as well when you release it from a pack. You can still get it out, it just doesn’t eject as smoothly as the 165.
Buy a Set
You need the Virtue PF Pods. You can buy them as single pods on our website (135 or 165) or as a six-pack (135 six-pack or 165 six-pack). At under $6.50 each they aren’t expensive. They’re more durable than any pod we have seen. If you don’t believe us, check out our Virtue PF Pod review video and watch us crush it with a vice.
Make no mistake: magfed is a blast. There is something exciting about having limited ammunition and fuel that adds a wholly new strategic layer to the sport we love, and by making every shot count, this variant of paintball makes matches more strategic than ever. For those that love magfed, it’s a breath of fresh air – a refreshing change of pace from other variants such as speedball. Yet, what if you want to hold a few extra balls of paint during magfed play? Seconds count, and you need a method you can use to reload your marker quietly and easily.
If you aren’t playing with the right shoes, you are missing out on one of the best ways to up your game. Any type of traction advantage is going to improve your ability to run and cut, resulting in improved quickness and better play. Several types of shoes are popular in paintball. Many players choose football or soccer cleats. These work well most of the time. For a long time, it was actually all that was available.
The best paintball cleats for you depend on your needs. Consider how much traction you want and how customizable you want to cleats to be. What is the typical play surface you play on? Is it turf, grass or dirt. Many fields that use turf surfaces have restrictions on the type of cleats that you can use. Additionally, you don’t necessarily want super-aggressive cleats for dirt-based play.
If you have already found something that works for your play style, definitely keep using it. Often times, a good pair of soccer cleats are absolutely fine. If you don’t have cleats yet, or you are looking for something that is paintball specific, check out these two options:
These are one of the most popular paintball-specific options. Customization is key to these cleats. Two different sets of spikes are included. You can switch the spikes out for a more or less aggressive feel depending on your gait, field type, or field cleat restrictions.
They are only available in sized 9-13, they include a carrying bag, two sets of spikes, and a spike tool. At $80, they cost around the same as a good pair of soccer cleats. The advantage is customization and paintball-specific development.
Instead of removable spikes, the HK Shredder uses fixed traction points. They are designed for use on a variety of surfaces—from mud and dirt to Astroturf. These cleats are acceptable on most turf fields because they don’t include metal spikes that dig up the surface. They are very similar in plate design to “turf shoes” developed for other sport-specific purposes.
The HK Army Shredder is $70.00 and available in sizes 8-14. They are a good deal, but not as customizable or advanced as the Exalt TRX cleat.
If you already have a pair of turf shoes or soccer cleats you’ll understand the impact that proper footing can have on your game. If you aren’t using cleats, you need to start. Consider the Exalt TRX if you want the best paintball cleats for adaptability. They can handle any play surface or condition. The HK Army Shredder cleats are excellent too—they are a good choice if you prefer simplicity and don’t want to be concerned with switching out spikes.
Have you ever broken paint while firing out of your ZetaMag? It’s heartbreaking, isn’t it? Nobody wants to deal with that – especially if you break paint in your magazine. It’s a terrible time – regardless if the paint in question is high or low quality. When it comes to cleaning your ZetaMag’s magazine, you need to have a game plan. The first place to start? Your kitchen sink.