The “best” is a hard word to describe since one rifle might be perfect for an Airsofter and not for another Airsofter based on their style of play. We will help get to the final decision and find out what is the best Airsoft sniper rifle and why. Each rifle has their own unique features to make them stand out and not compete with the others in the same class of rifle. These will be the most common rifles on the field when it comes to price and performance and the average beginner will not spend $1000 on a first rifle which is more common on a third rifle build for an experienced player.
Deciding the rifle will be a difficult choice but to narrow it down you just need to know if you like the look and feel of the rifle. You will be using this new rifle for hours on the field and you want it be enjoyable. The second important detail is if the rifle can be upgraded, spare parts available or if it is already performing great out of the box. Some bolt actions sniper rifle will come shooting 500fps out of the box already so there is not immediate need to upgrade once you get the rifle. These are all factors you have to check.
The Echo1 PSR
FPS: 500+ Weight: 4.5lb Buy Now
The Echo1USA PSR is a very basic rifle in terms of what is included in the box. The advantage will be the price tag around $140 and the ability to use the VSR10 upgrade parts. Many players will buy this base rifle and install the upgrade parts to have a great rifle for the field but not spending a fortune.
In the box with the PSR there will be a total of 2 magazines and BB Speed loader. The extra magazine is great since you don’t have to buy another one and you might need it while in the field. Other than these items the PSR is not full of extras and this will keep the cost down and give the user more options for aftermarket parts.
The PSR will be using the standard VSR10 based parts so you can upgrade later on if you choose to do so. The current setup allows for the high FPS of 500 with the use of a nylon piston which is a standard 4in length using a 90 degree sear catch on the piston and using a standard VSR10 45 degree sear. The cylinder and cylinder head are constructed out of aluminum and brass.
The PSR trigger group is very user friendly in that it has the options for easy to adjust Trigger Pull and Stroke. This means the option for a ‘Hair Trigger” is there once you adjust the 2 allen set screws and find the preferred setting. Most rifle require an aftermarket trigger group to have this option but the Echo1 PSR comes standard with it.
Inside the PSR trigger group the metal trigger and the adjustable spring settings will be seen along with the standard VSR10 based sear set. All the stress taking parts are made out of metal and make for a great platform to further build up if needed.
FPS: 460 Weight: 7lb Buy Now
The BRAVO MK98 is that classic “Sniper Rifle” look that has made its appearances in many movies and even video games with the iconic Olive Drab and Black two tone finish.
more accessories to complete the mission with the BRAVO MK98. The rifle will come with a adjustable metal bipod that is attached to the provided rail section. The rail section is attached to the front of the polymer frame with a lever action Quick Detach point to lock the parts in place or remove them quickly when needed.
Along with the bipod the MK98 will come with a single magazine and BB Loader. The small allen tools are for the assembly of the rifle that is in the box in two main parts. The body screws are captured in the body and cannot fall out and the manual will help out with the assembly and the hop up adjustment for the smaller tool.
The other allen tool will be used for the back end of the body and stock area. The cheek rest can be raised to better align the shooters eye with the optic along with the shoulder pad being shortened or lengthened with the spacer pads to help find that perfect spot while using the BRAVO MK98.
The parts to power this rifle are standardized and there are the options to upgrade if needed. The cylinder or bolt assembly will be like most others in the price range along with the nylon piston that is using a 90 sear set. There is an aftermarket Trigger Group and a Metal Piston and Power Up Spring Kit to go along with this rifle. The trigger group for the MK98 is made out of dense plastic and the main parts like the sears and axles are metal but this can limit your build goal. For doing a max FPS build the trigger group will fail and a replacement unit will be needed. A new trigger group or Zero Trigger will be an option that will have the hair trigger feature but it is pricey compared to just replacing the stock unit with a similar unit and keeping the cost very low..
Echo1USA Advanced Sniper Rifle or ASR
FPS: 430 Weight: 6lb Buy Now
Mobility, Versatility and Precision is what an Airsoft Sniper is about and the Echo1 ASR delivers just that. The ASR is the perfect mix of the M4 rifle platform and a bolt action rifle to allow somebody new to the sniper role fill the spot in the squad and help out no matter if they are right or left handed, The ASR has both options.
The Echo1 ASR is the only Airsoft rifle that has the Left and Right Handed option out of the box. No hassle of buying an aftermarket part, it’s in the box and ready to use. The rifle will come in the Right Handed user configuration since that is the most common request but switching the bolt is easy.
As you can see the parts laid out the Left and Right Bolt Arm are the mirrored parts. Simple way to keep track of them will be the recessed dimples for the brass detent. If and when the rear section of the bolt is taken apart to swap the Bolt Arm make sure the small parts are not lost. The factory warranty does not cover loss of parts from this operation.
This is how the ASR bolt will come away and is assembled for the Right Hand configuration. Notice the placement of the three crucial small parts. The Black and Brass colored spring loaded detent and the small pin that goes into the bolt arm. To install the Left option it will just have to be mirrored with the small parts location which is provided.
The ASR does not stop there as included parts with the rifle. A quick detach bipod is included that has several unique functions. The bipod has the legs that can extend and fold forward or backwards to make for a more compact profile while on the move.
The ASR will come with an extra magazine and a BB loader to help load quickly while out in the field. The Left Handed Bolt Arm as mentioned above will be included in the box as well. This rifle has a lot of great features and parts to make for a great introduction into the world of Airsoft Sniping without spending too much.
To keep in the lines of the ASR and the tactical look and feel of the rifle the stock will be that of something you would find on M4 that has the collapsible function to better fit the shooter. On the stock itself will be several QD points for a sling and a small compartment for spare batteries for an optic or anything else that might be needed.
Now that the long list of externals have been covered the important parts that give the ASR power and range are up for examination. The ASR Trigger Group will be similar to the MK98 mentioned earlier in how it is made out of a dense polymer with the crucial parts made out of metal like the 90 degree sear. Being that this rifle is shooting in the low 400 FPS range there is not too much stress on the parts to cause any damage. If a higher FPS is desired the Echo1 ASR Metal Piston Upgrade Kit and Spring will do just that and give the 500 FPS needed for longer range shots. Other parts like the inner barrel can be upgraded as well with the MadBull ASR 6.01 Tight Bore.
Related Blog: Airsoft Snipers: Electric vs Spring
FPS: 515 Weight: 8lb Buy Now
The Echo1 M28 in either Black or Tan is one of the most sought after bolt action sniper rifles in Airsoft due to its look and feel. The outward appearance of the M28 will have a large polymer frame and fluted outer barrel to match something you will see a well trained military personal using.
Taking a closer look at the stock you will notice the coarse texture on the entire stock to help with grip will firing and moving to another position under adverse conditions like rain. The bolt handle to contoured down along the frame to not protrude and get caught on anything and just like the other rifles covered the safety will be located behind the bolt.
Another great shot of the textured M28 stock but the more important parts to point out will be the adjustable shoulder pad to make it fit perfectly with any user. On the underside of the M28 will be metal sling loops for the use of a hunting or sporting rifle sling with a strap to go through. On the front side there will be the mounting pegs for attachment.
The M28 will have the package loaded with more than enough equipment when compared to the other rifles out on the market. There will be two magazines and a BB Loader along with spare bipod or sling mounting lugs. The 14mm CCW threaded tip will be included to use any aftermarket mock suppressors including the M28 Force Recon which is countersunk and looks the best. Also shown in the picture will be the M28 bipod that is able to be bolted onto the rifle and makes for a great included part for the still affordable price.
The internals of the Echo1 M28 will be using most of the standard VSR10 parts so it can be upgraded and fine tuned if needed. The nylon piston is using a 45 degree sear catch to allow for the use of the SPEED Airsoft M28 Sear Set and many other parts. The main part of the M28 and its accuracy is not the fluted barrel but what is inside. The brass inner barrel is stabilized by several over reinforced M28 Barrel Spacer to keep the barrel steady and ensuring a straight flight for the BB. The M28 Cylinder will be a standard set with metal and nylon to deliver the 500+FPS.
Some of the upgrade parts for the M28 will be the SPEED Airsoft Sear Set and Trigger or the MadBull tight bore barrel. One of the features that is included with the M28 is the adjustable trigger similar tot he Echo1 PSR mentioned earlier. With this bolt action rifle that comes will all the parts inside and out it makes for a great option to use on the field.
FPS: 410 Weight: 7.5lb Buy Now
The Modify MOD24 is a complete rifle made by Modify; the company that is known for all the gearbox parts. Their take on the Bolt Action Rifle they designated the MOD24 is the best in their terms and they didn’t want it to come up short in any competition. Instead of making a rifle that still needed parts to make it better performing before it gets time on the field Modify has included all the high end upgrade parts into the MOD24 already.
An extra item for the MOD24 or any other rifle will be the Modify Rifle Stock Ammo Pouch that is adjustable to fit on the back of the stock to provide a comfortable cheek rest and storage for small items and with the use of velcro it can be streamlined if needed.
The special scope rail on the MOD24 stands out from the rest since it is equipped with a raised and extended version. Using a large scope it would come in contact with the barrel and you would need special scope rings but not with this special rail.
The MOD24 will only come with a single magazine but it has a optional Tracer LED like their BHIVE Midcaps. Now you can have a sniper rifle with the ability to fire a Trace BB down range. Other nice parts that come with the rifle will be the metal sling and bipod mounts on the front and rear section of the stock.
To continue with the goal of being the best on the field the MOD24 has an adjustable trigger that can be turned from the outside of the rifle. This means the rifle can have the trigger adjusted while on the field and without taking the frame off and spending more time getting to the trigger group. One of the noticeable traits of the trigger is that it pulls straight back and not pivots like a traditional Airsoft rifle.
The name Modify makes you think of machined aluminum Airsoft parts and that is the case once again with the MOD24 and the parts used inside. The cylinder will be made out of steel and with a black finish it will give the MOD24 a more covert look instead of the chrome look of all the other rifles on the field. With a steel cylinder it is already upgraded to the max for strength and able to support any power spring on the market. The cylinder head will be a high grade aluminum with a rubber bumper to help adsorb the shock of the piston when a shot is fired. The piston will be constructed out of a light weight aluminum and a cup seal on the front to create a perfect seal. The rear section that interacts with the trigger group and sear will be made out of steel. The standardized bolt action spring in the MOD24 will give the above 400 FPS but any other spring can be installed without issues.
In case you wanted to lighten the piston even more or use the Modify MOD24 piston in your rifle there is the Light(blue) and Ultra Light(green) options. Modify makes parts for the “APS2” and “L96” based rifles. Looking at these parts and knowing their name you can count on them for high end upgrade parts at a fair price.
So which Airsoft Rifle makes for the best sniper rifle?
After looking at these rifles and seeing how they are built and what they come with you will have to take that into consideration. Looking at the line the MOD24 would be the best option since all the upgrade parts are installed but with that it takes away the fun of building your rifle and having that satisfaction of know they you built an Airsoft sniper rifle and just pulled off a 300 foot shot. The choice will be up to you to decide since they are all different and better than others in their own unique way.
Written by Brian Holt
Written by Brian Holt and also published on jagprecision.com.