As an advanced paintball player, there are several pieces of equipment that you can buy to improve your game and make your experience of playing more enjoyable. Beginning paintball equipment uses less expensive materials and processes, but it can also be unreliable and prevent you from a smooth playing experience. As you begin to understand the game better and know you will be playing regularly, invest in new equipment or upgrades for your existing equipment.
The first piece of equipment to upgrade is your paintball gun itself, also known as a marker. A more expensive model will give you a more accurate shot and more options and control when you are shooting. One major upgrade is an electropneumatic gun that has a faster response from the trigger to the shot. In addition, it allows you to shoot more paintballs per second because its extremely fast recovery time. This gives you a better opportunity to hit your opponents.
Basic paintball hoppers hold paintballs and feed them into the gun using the pull of gravity. Unfortunately, this sometimes causes the paintballs to get stuck or to not make it into the gun fast enough, which can lead to you not be able to shoot when you need to. One upgrade to consider is an agitated hopper, which moves to keep the paintballs in motion. Very advanced players might want a force-fed hopper, which propels the paintballs into the gun and is the fastest way to reload.
Tanks of gas propel each shot out of the gun at a speed of up to 300 feet per second. The basic tank is filled with carbon dioxide, and refills are inexpensive and easy to come by. However, because carbon dioxide uses heat to change from liquid to gas, it can cause problems that make the paintball gun freeze after firing multiple shots. It can also cause changes in velocity and accuracy if the carbon dioxide cannot convert into gas fast enough. The best upgrade for this problem is to switch to HPA tanks, which use high pressure air, more specifically nitrogen, to propel the shots. This type of propellant also causes less damage to your gun, so it is a good investment if you have an expensive gun.
You must wear a mask while playing paintball to protect your face, and mostly your eyes, from damage due to getting shot. However, masks often limit your visibility because of they block peripheral vision or get fogged up inside. As an advanced player, you should upgrade to a mask with a thermal lens, which has two layers of plastic to help prevent fogging. Better masks are also more comfortable and give you better peripheral vision so they do not hinder your game as much.
There are countless types of specialty paintball equipment that an advanced player can purchase to make himself more comfortable and effective when playing. For example, players usually wear a vest to carry extra paintballs, so you can get better vests that make paintballs more accessible while you are away from your reloading station. You can also purchase protective clothing to help reduce bruising when you get hit.