Tippmann M4 CO2/HPA Carbine – Comprehensive Review
Are you tired of tinkering, adjusting and dealing with your AEG all the time? Are you looking for a reliable airsoft platform? Are you looking for a Gas/HPA powered gun that doesn’t run on a battery? Then look no further than the fully mechanical Tippmann CO2/HPA M4 Carbine!
- Good kick (Recoil)
- 100% mechanical – no fire controls unit (FCU)
- Internally regulated – no need for external regulators!
- Can be switched between HPA propellant and 12g CO2 cartridges with included conversion parts
- Takes all standard STANAG M4 magazines when using HPA
- Hop-up is hard to adjust
- Cannot change out the pistol grip without modification.
- CO2 mag sometimes doesn’t feed BBs
- HPA tank and airline are another $60 to $70
As this is a recoil gun, you may expect it to have over-the-top recoil; this is not the case. If you have ever shot a gas blow-back pistol, the recoil on this gun is similar to the heavier, hard kicking pistols. However, although it doesn’t have a huge kick, you will still have to slightly adjust your aim on full-auto because the movement will hinder your sight/scope picture.
With this being a fully mechanical HPA rifle, there is no need for a battery to run the trigger unit or the FCU which makes gun prep that much easier. This weapon has a single stage trigger, which means that you will actually have to pull back the charging handle after a reload to make the gun fire. Furthermore, because this is an open bolt system, you will not have the first shot dry fire, allowing you to lay down BBs as soon as you put in a fresh magazine.
Since the pressure is internally regulated, you have three different options of propellants. Number one is using the included CO2 magazine that runs of a single 12g CO2 cartridge. The second option is using a HPA tank with an airline, or finally you can use the third option which is an unregulated CO2 tank with an airline.
Now let’s look at the nitty-gritty details of this rifle:
- FPS (Feet per Second) – adjustable between 200-400 FPS with 0.20g BBs
- ROF (Rate of Fire) – adjustable between 8-20 RPS (Rounds per Second)
- Effective range – 100-150 yards/ 90m – 137m (Dependant on chosen FPS and BB weight)
- Recommended BB weight – 0.30g BB – 0.45g BB
- Gearbox version – N/A – HPA System
- MOSFET – N/A
- ETU – none
- Hop up – adjustable with hex (allen) key
- Inner barrel length – 363mm
- Inner barrel diameter – 6.03mm
- Battery connector – N/A
- Recommended battery type – N/A
- Fire modes – safe, semi-automatic, and fully automatic
- Construction –Aluminum and polymer
- Weight –5.5 lbs/2.5 kg
- Rail system – Polymer RIS (Picattinny – which are removable)
- Minimum length – 29,3”/74.3cm
- Maximum length – 33.0”/83.8cm
The major issue that was disappointing out of the box, was the C02 magazine. This is where the CO2 cartridge is housed, however, the puncture valve is actually inside the gun. This means that you must slam the mag in for it to puncture through. When the mag goes through and pressurises, the pressure pushes the mag out just enough that the BBs won’t feed. I found this issue to be consistent on my gun, therefore I just simply recommend not using the C02 mag; Whilst on the topic of mags, I mainly use a G&G waffle type hi-cap mags or multiple Elite Force 140 round mid-caps for the HPA conversion.
It is also difficult to adjust the hop up unit in general. You have to have a hex (allen) key to adjust it and we all know how easily hex keys can be lost. Also if you want to adjust the hop up on the field, you have to find cover, step out the game or go back to the safe zone to adjust your hop up which can be annoying. What I do recommend is setting the gun at appropriate FPS for your country’s AEG FPS limit, choosing a BB weight that is appropriate for the FPS and finally adjusting your hop-up based on that and sticking to it. This will provide you with greatest consistency. Finally, another issue is that since this is a proprietary hop up unit, you cannot change it out for any AEG spec hop up units.
Personally I have installed an Angel Custom, stainless steel, 6.01 mm inner barrel as the original wasn’t great and didn’t provide consistent results. Any high quality, tight bore AEG barrel will do; I recommend using barrels with between 6.01mm and 6.03mm diameter. However, make sure to always regularly clean your inner barrel when using such tight diameters, as any dirt might skew the gun’s accuracy. I also recommend using Prometheus or Maple Leaf as high quality inner barrel alternatives and finally Action Army if on a budget.
I have also changed out the hop up bucking, but only after the stock one ripped from running 0.43g BBs regularly on full hop. I recommend Prometheus purple bucking for the upgrade, however I’d suggest that you actually keep running the original until it breaks or you are adamant to change it as the original actually provides good consistency!
Finally, if you would like to turn this gun into a DMR, Tippmann sells a 400+ FPS valve set up for an easy conversion. Also the externals, such as the rail system, receivers and the buffer tube are all military spec which opens up the variety of accessories that you could use on this gun.
Airsoft Ranch Verdict
As I love shooting gas blow-back guns, I personally find this carbine extremely fun to shoot due to its realistic recoil. This gun also feels incredible due to its sturdy build, surprising lightweight and slim, real steel pistol grip. Out on the field, you will be able to out-range most AEGs and even most stock, bolt-action sniper rifles. However, I do recommend that you do purchase the HPA tank and airline straight away as this is where the gun really shines!
As this gun is geared towards advanced airsoft players, I would definitely not recommend that you’d buy this for your first airsoft rifle as the price of the gun is $450 and the HPA tank and airline are another $60 to $70, and this also means you will need to do the conversion from CO2 to HPA. Otherwise, I would highly recommend this gun to any experienced airsoft player.
Overall I think that this gun is excellent once converted to the HPA system; thus I do recommend spending the extra $130 and changing out the CO2 puncture valve with the included HPA conversion parts by following the detailed manual straight out of the box.
Written by Caleb M. Shilliff
Check out more content from Caleb over at: www.teenairsofter.com
Edited by Kamil Turecki