ProPaintball.com Hands-On the Empire Axe
by Justin Mason
Since the debut of the original Invert Mini in 2006, this unique operating platform has evolved into a multitude of gun styles—from the traditional entry-level speedball-styled “Mini”, to the intimidating, HK-reminiscent “TM” series of mil-sim paintball machine guns. Enjoying a massive success with over 20,000 units sold since the gun’s inception, the newest version landed at ProPaintball’s corporate office.
PROPaintball Proudly Presents: The Empire AXE
Out of the box, the new Empire AXE enjoys pleasing aesthetics, with our test model being a deep, rich dust black with matte dust silver accents. Equipped with a battery in the marker out-of-box, it came fully charged and ready to play. The marker came with a nicely organized kit with spares (including a few critical o-rings, detents, screws, relevant Allen keys, and an extra poppet valve face). It also included a 12” aluminum barrel, barrel cover, a CD laden with manuals, and a quick-start guide.
From initial quality inspections, the AXE delivers. The anodizing and bead-blasting on our marker was consistent throughout, harboring no visible defects or bleed on various parts—with consistent texture and attention to detail in all of the crevices and areas that are sometimes overlooked. Even with a more in-depth inspection, our team found no flaws—even where pieces are normally placed on anodizing racks. While “dust” finish is generally more forgiving of poor-machining or bad quality control, the AXE possessed a finish generally reserved for much higher priced markers.
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