Airsoft Magazines in Question – High, Mid or Low Caps Is the Question for all Airsoft Guns. This has been a never-ending topic of debate on and off the skirmish field for as long as we can remember. Using Hi, Mid or low caps doesn’t make you a better or worse player do they? For all of our new readers out there in the digital and paper world, generally speaking, there are three different types of airsoft magazines, low capacity (low cap), mid capacity (mid cap), and high capacity (hi cap). Each being as popular as the next. So lets jump in to this Airsoft Magazines in Question blog. Low cap magazines can hold as little as 30 rounds, Mid caps anywhere from 120-180 rounds whereas hi caps hold 300 to 600 and even higher. No matter what magazine you choose they all work on the same principle of being spring-fed, however, the high capacity magazine requires the user to continually wind the magazine which in turn places the spring under tension ensuring a constant feed.
When you come to think about it in a straight BB fight between two players, one with a hi cap the other with a mid or low cap. The hi cap player is always going to have an advantage as he or she has more ammo to shoot before changing out a magazine – it’s simple math. In this example, our hi cap player is using a 600 round magazine and our low cap player is using 150 mid cap magazine meaning that our mid cap player is going to have to change magazines four times to fire as many BB’s as our hi cap player. Thankfully it’s not always a straight firefight on a skirmish field and that advantage the hi cap player had seems to have disappeared quickly when you factor in skill levels.
In reality, it doesn’t really matter; it’s a personal choice. Some player prefer the realism of low cap mags, where others prefer the convenience of mid and hi caps. Maybe there is also a cost element going on in the background? Especially if you play limited ammo games. We limit the amount of ammo that a player can use in our popular AI500 series of games to 600 rounds per life, that’s to say the amount of ammo you have in a magazine until you have to respawn. For hi cap players that could only be one mag, Mid Cap players would have to carry four mags, while Low cap players will find themselves carrying 20 magazines, which is ridiculous. This goes to show the other end of the spectrum when it comes to choosing the magazine type you want and its benefits. The other thing that is worthwhile mentioning is that hi cap magazines outsell mid and low cap Airsoft Magazines – a ratio of 20-1 (according to John Dean from FireSupport). John also confirmed that the majority of players want to fire as may BB’s as they can downrange and the most cost-effective way of doing this is by using hi cap magazines. Something we here at JBBG I had already suspected.
Hi cap magazines have a feed window at the top and a wheel on the bottom. You fill the magazine with BBs and wind the wheel at the bottom of the magazine.
You will find yourself continuously winding the wheel to keep the coil under tension to feed the BB’s into the rifle.
More ammo per magazine
Fewer magazine changes
Magazines can be refilled simply from a bottle of BBs.
BB rattle when the magazine is not fully loaded
Use more ammo
Mid-cap magazines are not as common as you would expect, but there is a market for the semi-realism a player gets from using them.
A mid-capacity magazine has a much simpler feed mechanism, which is essentially a spring-loaded tube filled with BBs.
Due to how the BBs are stored in the magazine under tension, there is no rattle associated with the magazine.
Less ammo per magazine
Requires a ‘speedloader’ to load magazines
A constant need to conserve ammo
Feed problems than a hi-cap
Low-capacity magazines or Low-Caps thrive in the milsim community and amongst hardcore players, who will generally shy away from standard airsoft games.
Using the same mechanism as a mid-cap magazine, but simply with a shorter feed tube and spring the realistic ammo makes players conserve their ammo, take calculated shots and consider their environment carefully.
The most realistic magazine on the market
Low ammo capacity
Can be prone to jamming
Outgunned by hire capacity magazine users
Airsoft is about having fun and that for a lot of players is “trigger time”. The more shots downrange, the happier the player. How you achieve this is entirely down to you.
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Blog Name: Airsoft Magazines in Question
Blog Author: Mark Watts (JBBGMARK) and Airsoft International