Special Ops Paintball: !THE ULTIMATE VESTS TEST! TAKE A LOOK - Special Ops Paintball

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!THE ULTIMATE VESTS TEST! TAKE A LOOK Comparison between 3 tactical Vests

#1 User is offline   Jigmé 

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Post icon  Posted 07 February 2008 - 03:20 AM

First Of, Let me introduce myself : I'm Jigmé, From France, and my Job is to write paintball gear reviews (kind of Freelance journalist for a European Paintball Distributor called PCP, proconceptpaintball), like the one below. I mainly write articles in French, but, also translate them into English. Here is one of my biggest Job.

Here is The Original Link, the website where i originally posted this review : http://forum.goscena...sp?TOPIC_ID=100

Here is the French Version of this test (for those who wanna practice their French) : http://forum.goscena...asp?TOPIC_ID=98

THis website is www.goscenario.com it is a kind of European version of the SPPL, i'm sure you heard bout this in Blast Radius Woodsball Podcast.

Then Enjoy, I'm sure you've never seen such test before.

PS. Sorry if you can find English mistakes, i try to do my best :laugh:



Introduction

Big Job for this time : I’ll try to convince undecided investors who haven’t got a clue which tactical vest they should spend their paintball fund in.

What we have here is the ideal gear to make it through one hour of GoScenario (or SPPL). Forget you fluorescent back packs that are only meant to carry your pods and possibly a tank, tactical vests are more appropriated for scenario game, furthermore, they are also the in detail that will transform you into a perfect commando or a veteran woodsballer.

Matter of fact, I propose you a comparative of three tactical vests which are distributed by three different brands. The first one is the 140 from PCS, the second one is the M4 from OPSGEAR, finally, the last one is the Dagger from Special Ops. These three vests are fitted with more or less pockets, accessories - useful or contingent - and may satisfy a lot any average woodsballer who would like not to fumble into his pocket for hours in order to find the smoke grenade that will cover his retreat.



Avant tout.
At first sight, we quickly realize that, as far as the finish is concerned, the three items are three of a kind : that’s tough! It’s meant to hold the road, it’s especially made to resist to extreme conditions ( anyway, don’t think it could be used as a substitute for a parachute during a freejump…).

Concerning weight, without carrying anything, the M4 is the heaviest whereas the PCS is the lightest. The Dagger, is right between the two others.

Ventilation is to be noticed : the Dagger, for it doesn’t cover your whole body, let you breath tranquilly ; the PCS and the M4 are made of Mesh, a sort of wire mesh that presents a huge ventilation ( and can be used as a basis for ghillie : to do that, you just have to lay your leaf square on the mesh and zip-tie it.). I am to precise that the PCS is much more aerated than the M4 which more looks like a cast in one piece armor.

To open the vest, you may use a zipper on the PCS and the M4 and use interlock system on the Dagger. Major detail : if you are slim and skinny, don’t think of buying the M4 or the PCS that will hang loose around you bony body - in spite of the adjustable straps situated on the flanks of each vest, the vest-belt straps (on the M4 and the PCS.) as well as the adjustable shoulders that equip the M4 -, on the contrary, the Dagger vest will be especially nice for you because it will hold whatever your thickness is ( if you are aged of 10 or less, forget it, presto!) thanks to a kind of Velcro belt that looks like high quality backpack fastening.

Here is a piece of information you should remember of : all these vests do exist in different colors ; 5 or 6 types of camouflage can be chosen if you purchase the Dagger ( Acu Digi, Specops Digi, Olive Drab, Black, Desert or possibly Multicam.) whereas you can choose between 3 colors with the M4 ( Black, Desert and Olive Drab.) and only 2 with the PCS ( Black and Olive Drab.).


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- iPods?

The major thing everyone consider on tactical vests : the number of pouches dedicated to pods is primordial when it deals with purchasing a vest as well as a simple back pack. The PCS 140 enables you to carry 4 pods, the M4, 6, and the Dagger, 7 ( 4 normal pouches with tongues and 3 elastics.).

You must be given some more precision. It’s essential to know that - depending on the vest - pods are to be carried in different ways, in addition, it happens that some sort of pods can’t be used with some of these tactical vests. Indeed, PCS and OPSGEAR vests enable you to carry them on the front side, that is to say at belly level, whereas the Dagger is equipped with backside pods.

Using the PCS or the Special Ops vest, you have to pull the pods down to take them out, like speedball backpacks, whilst they have to be pulled up if you use the OPSGEAR-branded vest.

As regards pods compatibility, I have tried with 3 different sorts of recipient ( 100 rounds, 140 rounds and Dye 160 rounds.) and it turns out that, on the Dagger, you can only place 140 and 160 in the normal pouches ( the ones with tongues.), nevertheless, any other type of pod can be used with the 3 elastics. The PCS vest allow you to carry any kind of pod. Nonetheless, the M4 is only meant to carry 50 or 100 round pods : 140 and 160 are too long in comparison with the tongues. At first sight, you can’t carry 140 and 160 round pods. But if you’re smart enough you must have seen that the tongues can be removed and refixed to let you place 140 and 160 paintball pods thanks to the Velcro System and that’s a good point for the M4!

Taking pods out is another thing. There is not any problem, except if you’ve gotten used to pulling pods up, for sure, when you have to pull pods down it can be a source of trouble, at least during the first tries.

On the M4, nothing simpler, one must pull the Velcro up and take the pod out.

The PCS is rather funny when you use 140 or 160, to place them in you vest, you have to push them up forcing on the elastics, then you use the Velcro to hold you pod in place ; but, mainly, when you unVelcro the pouch, the pod is kind of blown out ( it will not flunk your paintballs on the ground, fortunately.) down way as though it was meant to ease taking your pod out.

The Dagger is simple too, at least, regarding the tongue-equipped pouches ( it is possible that replacing these tongues during a game can be a hard stuff to do for the elastic can be bothering : consequently, you should try to replace your pods at home before being shot at on the field while trying to replace them.).
Given the elastic are too tough, pods are hard to put in and even hard to take out ( that’s the case of Dye Pods which are almost impossible to take out.) ; moreover, if you ever intend not to throw your pods on the ground for you don’t like the fact of losing them, you should know that replacing them in the elastics while playing is impossible and can make you lose your awareness as well as a few precious seconds. You’d rather take them back later on instead of trying to replace them empty.

As regards pod-carriers solidity, you can feel the M4 is unbreakable : that’s well made. That’s the same for the Dagger : tongues are ultra tough and the elastics seem to hold the road, in fact, you could break them providing you were named Hulk. Finally, the PCS looks a bit « light » compared to the other tactical vests, but it is sure that the elastics cannot be broken, even if you play hard and in an aggressive way [}:dodgy:] .


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Over…Out!

Another major thing is the radio pouch, that’s this little pouch which is perfectly fitted to your radio. It’s really useful and permit not to carry your radio in the pocket of your pants or even hung to your hip or belt ; consequently, the guy who wants PTT ( Push To Talk.) won’t have to fumble into his darned deep pocket to activate his radio, he will just have to find the button of the radio, whom is situated on his shoulder [:I].

The radio pouch can be found on each vests, indeed, all have a pouch located on the left shoulder ( when you wear the vest.). The sole detail that is not the same depending on the brand is if you use a button ( M4.) or Velcro ( PCS and Dagger.) to open it.

You can also notice an interesting element : contrary to the PCS and the M4, on which the radio pouch is sewn, the Dagger vest enables you to adjust and place your pouch wherever you want on the shoulder level straps. Indeed, the latter use the MOLLE System which allows the user to place any accessories wherever he wants, therefore, you can take the radio pouch off and attach it back either higher or lower or even on the right shoulder strap.


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This post has been edited by Jigmé: 07 February 2008 - 03:38 AM

Jigmé, From France!


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#2 User is offline   Jigmé 

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Posted 07 February 2008 - 03:24 AM

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Tank Pouch? You mean « poche pour char »?

The third and last element that constitutes the strict minimum on a tactical vest is the bottle pouch ; when you are fond of scenario game, I bet you’d say that directly-mounted-on-marker bottles is sodding ugly, therefore, what’s better than using a mamba connected to the bottle whom is situated on your back, it looks cool all the more so as it lightens the marker and relieves your weak and frail arms by taking off 1 kilogram something.

Glaring detail! The Dagger alone is fitted with a bottle pouch. The PCS and the M4 are not equipped with the tank pouch, at least on the stock version. Regarding the M4, you can purchase a tank pouch with the MOLLE System ( 30 euros or something like that.), the latter can be found on the back of the M4 vest, therefore, you can fix the pouch wherever you like ; which is not the case of the Dagger - and that can represent a disadvantage for those who’d rather play with the bottle mounted on the marker -, for the horizontal pouch is sewn on the vest and cannot be taken off.

In spite of that, one must admit it’s a very efficient bottle pouch : if you decide to place your bottle in that pouch, know that it’s safe and that nothing like losing it during a game can ever happen ; indeed, on one hand, you can choose where to place the bottle, I mean left or right hand side depending on the way you play ; on the other hand, there are 2 x 2 Velcro ( first, you fix 2 of them, then you fix the 2 others.) and 2 interlock System straps to avoid the tank from falling down when you’re running. Needless to say every type of bottle can be used.

On the other hand, there is a major disadvantage concerning the PCS : not any bottle pouch! Possibly, you could use the pocket located on your back, this pocket can be opened thanks to 2 zippers ( one on the left hand side and one on the right hand side, plus 2 Velcro.). You could try to place your tank inside, but unfortunately, that’ not ergonomic nor agreeable. But that’s better than nothing anyway!


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Right shoulder…your right-hand man?

Tactical slings users might like one stuff : padded shoulders, at least, right-padded shoulder which avoids pain getting used to hanging your marker down. There is a padded shoulder on the PCS and on the M4.

The Dagger only has a little « mytho »pocket ( in all cases, there is no padded shoulder.). Like the radio pouch, you can fix it wherever you like thanks to the MOLLE System that equip the shoulder straps. This tiny pocket allows the user to carry his ID documents ( for tournaments.).

Useless or useful? You are the one you makes the choice ; at worst, don’t forget you can take it off and substitute it for any other accessories fitted with the MOLLE System.


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#3 User is offline   Jigmé 

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Posted 07 February 2008 - 03:26 AM

The other pockets.

The presence of two additional pockets on each vest can be noticed.

Indeed, the PCS is equipped with two torso-leveled pockets : one on the left hand side, one on the right hand side. The right hand side pocket ( when you’re carrying the vest.) contains a tube or CO2 cartridge carrier ( you can place 5 tubes or/and CO2 cartridges.) which can be fixed anywhere else thanks to the Velcro System. The left hand side pocket is empty and has no specificity.

On the M4, the right hand pocket has no particularity either, however, 3 pockets are situated on the left hand side, these pockets allow the user to carry smokes or any cylindrical item. You can find two inner zipper pockets which allow you to carry whatever you want to ( knowing that it will be hard to fumble into them for you are to open your vest before.).

The last one, the Dagger, is not equipped with torso leveled pockets but belly leveled pockets. Indeed, there are two pockets : one grenade on the left hand side and one normal pocket on the right hand side.


You may use the Velcro System to open the pockets apart from the grenade pocket ( Interlock System.).

By the way, you might regret that the pockets are sewn on the vests because some of these pockets might seem rather useless for some players, but after all, what are you complaining about? You should know that these kind of vest, ultra customisable and completely functional, does exist but is 2 if not 3 times more expensive than any of these 3 vests. Anyway, I bet you’ll be able to find something useful to place in, won’t you [:laugh:] ?


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REALLY HAPPY PERSONs?

Camel Back, have you ever heard about that? It might seem contingent for a 15 minute game… Uh, what’s a Camel Back? It’s that stuff you carry in your back, you know, that stuff which transforms you into a walking water tower. In short, it’s a bladder full of water or any liquid (coca cola if you wanna, afterwards, you’re the one who’s to clean it…), there is a tube connected to the bladder, this tube allow you to drink without taking your mask off ( which is absolutely forbidden during a game!). Needless to say it could be useful when the sun is toasting you [xx(] .

This Camel Back is a real advantage if you intend to play non-stop for 45 if not 60 minutes, in brief this could be really useful if you play GoScenario or SPPL : no way you could waste your time in respawn zone trying to open a bottle of water ( taking the mask off, taking off the bottle top, drinking, etc… That unacceptable during a tournament.).

You can buy this bladder ( about 30€ for a Camel BAK branded bladder.) and place it in a pocket ( up to 100oz.) situated your inner vest ; at least it’s the case of the M4 ( the tube can be fixed thanks to a little elastic located next to the radio pocket.) and the Dagger ( the tube can be fixed through the MOLLE System on the shoulder straps.) and possibly on the PCS if you ever place it in the pocket prematurely dedicated to the bottle.


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My Band.

Here is a useless but « mytho » accessory [8D] ! There are Velcro dedicated to badges on the 3 vests.

There is a dorsal Velcro ( the name of the team.) on the M4 ( at least a female Velcro.) ; on the contrary, the Dagger is equipped with a back side Velcro ( male and female.) which could be slightly obstructed by the bottle pouch. The PCS has no Back Velcro.

There are also front side Velcro : not any on the Dagger. Nevertheless, you can find them on the 2 other vests : 1 on the M4 and 2 on the PCS. Indeed, concerning the latter, you can take of a male Velcro ( dedicated to your pseudonym.) ; the other one is the American flag : of course you can take it off and replace it wherever you want to or even substitute it for any other badge for this flag is easy to spot and could compromise your cover during a game.


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This post has been edited by Jigmé: 07 February 2008 - 03:39 AM

Jigmé, From France!


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#4 User is offline   Jigmé 

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Post icon  Posted 07 February 2008 - 03:28 AM

Tryin’ it.

Now, that’s another thing. Decorticating the vest is primordial, but the most important stuff deals with knowing if the vest rocks when you’re wearing it.
As I said before, the PCS and the M4 might hang loose. On the contrary, the Dagger make you feel comfortable and secure : the vest hold on place and will never hang loose even if you’re running, crawling, sliding, jumping, etc.

By the way, crawling may entail a huge disadvantage on the M4 and the PCS, that’s obvious, front side pods may bother you if you try to crawl like a slug - or a snake -. Moreover, front side pods may entail a danger for your paintballs : the PCS cheap elastics and Velcro might open and spread your rounds all over the ground. On the M4 and the Dagger, no problem. On the latter, I must warn you : the 3 elastics are completely out of cover and any wrong move might open your pods.

The Camel Back is bothering as well as funny. The negative : it takes room ( mainly 50 oz or even more, it’s quite a lot.) and can bother you , however, there is one nice stuff : It’s rather cool and fresh, and that’s a good point when you’re getting burnt outside.

Regarding the bottle pouch, no problem on the Dagger. On the PCS, if you place your bottle in that backside pocket, you feel that big piece of steel. On the M4, it’s sure that the bottle pouch doesn’t cause any problem given it’s fixed thanks to the MOLLE System.


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Conclusion

These three vests are three of a kind, for sure, quality as well as functionality speaking. Indeed all of them allow you to carry the essential and the contingent. If you can’t chose between one of these three vests, I am to tell you that all are insane and meant to play scenario paintball. Then, it depends on what you expect, your style of play and your fund : 79€ for the PCS 140, 130 € something for the M4 and 109 for the Dagger vest.

And now, it’s high time for a poll : come on! Which of these vest, after having read this review, seems to be the best one?


Buy something that makes sense
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#5 User is offline   Legato 

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Posted 07 February 2008 - 04:15 AM

please do not post 3 topics on the same subject in different forums. That is considered spamming. Nice write ups. but please, just post it in reveiws and thats it. Thanks.
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#6 User is offline   Jigmé 

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Post icon  Posted 07 February 2008 - 04:17 AM

Aight, sorry :laugh:

This post has been edited by Jigmé: 07 February 2008 - 04:19 AM

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#7 User is offline   Aych 

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Posted 07 February 2008 - 02:16 PM

Écouter!
Great Reviews!! this is one of the best ones i have ever read(i'm still reading it)
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#8 User is offline   The Shepherd 

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Posted 07 February 2008 - 02:52 PM

Very nice! Although the dagger vest for a longer game, and by longer I mean a 9 hour game, the lack of padded or wide shoulders will cause the straps to dig down into your shoulders. Be warned.
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#9 User is offline   xscout 

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Posted 08 February 2008 - 09:45 AM

Excellent reviews, and a very nice comparison between the three popular vests.

As for the dagger vest shoulder pad issue...call the customer support line, you can buy pads for $15.
I had an old LBV that I cut apart and used as pads, works great.
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#10 User is offline   oldguny 

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 03:14 PM

Nice review. To me it seems the dagger wins out of the three.

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#11 User is offline   SilentWolf 

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Posted 29 February 2008 - 04:27 PM

Thanks alot man, I've been trying to figure out what vest I was going to get, and this helped me a lot. Right now its the Dagger Vest against the Blackcell or other MOLLE vest.

Nice Writeup!
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