Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Comparison: Elite Rapidstrike vs Elite Hyperfire

I've got a Cyclonic review coming up soon, but that could take a while. In the meantime have a comparison between Elite's two full auto rifle blasters. How does the Hyperfire stack up to the Rapidstrike?

Aesthetics: The Rapidstrike has a pretty typical (but awesome) assault rifle style to it. It's a beefy, sharp and good looking thing, with all the right tacticool elements to it. The Hyperfire is probably best described as some kind of heavy Sci-Fi weapon, with its huge front end, handguard and substantially more curves. I personally prefer the Rapidstrike, but as always I don't score on aesthetics.
Accessories: The Rapidstrike includes itself, a clear 18 dart mag and 18 Elites.
The Hyperfire includes itself, a 25 drum and 25 Elites.
Using my new scoring method in which Accessories ignores anything to do with capacity, this round is a draw since neither blaster has any extra parts.
Range/Power: A grey trigger Rapidstrike can reach around 9-11m at full rev. Not great, but certainly usable. By design, the Rapidstrike doesn't seem to lose range in rapid fire.
A grey trigger Hyperfire peaks at about 8-10m range. Slightly worse, but not especially terrible for a grey trigger blaster. Unlike the Rapidstrike, the Hyperfire bogs down significantly in rapid fire.
Naturally the Rapidstrike wins this round, though only by a bit.
Accuracy: A stock grey trigger Rapidstrike tends to have quite a lot of spread, not faring too well with my standard doorway test at ~8m.
A stock grey trigger Hyperfire seems to perform a lot better. At very least, more darts tend to travel through the doorway instead of hitting it.
The Hyperfire takes this round. It's worth noting that this poor accuracy could simply be due to very poor tolerances on Rapidstrike parts. My other stock grey trigger flywheelers all tended to do better than the Rapidstrike. I certainly wouldn't put it down to the Hyperfire's canted flywheels without more rigorous, proper scientific testing.
Rate of Fire: ROF is the main selling point of both blasters.
The Rapidstrike claims 3 darts per second and can achieve up to ~3.5dps with new, decent quality C batteries.
The Hyperfire claims 5 darts per second, and can achieve up to ~6dps with new, decent quality D batteries.
Naturally the Hyperfire wins this round.
Usability: Both blasters have their share of issues. The Rapidstrike's main issue lies with a particular flywheel cage alignment. This problem does not occur with every Rapidstrike, but it is a very common issue. If a dart head is bent even slightly downards, or is pushed forward from too low, it is very likely for the dart head to catch against the bottom feed ramp of the flywheel cage, jamming up the blaster. This can be fixed by sanding down the ramp a little to allow the dart to more easily slide upwards. With this fix, the Rapidstrike becomes far more reliable.
The Hyperfire's first, most apparent issue is the loose jam door lock. Again this is something that doesn't occur with every Hyperfire, but is common enough to be an issue. If the lock shifts even slightly, the blaster is completely disabled. This necessitates holding the lock forward, whether manually or wedging it forward. Naturally this problem is eliminated by disabling or removing the electrical switch within.
The Hyperfire's main issue stems from its conveyor belt feeding mech. It's a novel new design that does help some issues (in particular eliminating any pusher return issues that the Rapidstrike can have), however introduces a whole new world of other ones. Given its design, it is far harder to implement any sort of cycle control to the Hyperfire, and so there is no guarantee about the time between trigger pull and dart firing. With a standard 3 switch Rapidstrike build, there is a guarantee that a dart will be fired in exactly half a pusher cycle. Since the Hyperfire's conveyor belt can stop anywhere and is near impossible to implement any cycle control, it cannot provide any such guarantee. More importantly however, the conveyor belt is very fincky about the sorts of darts it will feed. New or very good condition darts will work fine, however any slightly squished up dart or any dart with chunks taken out of the back will often be skipped over entirely. Additionally, if your mags do not feed perfectly, the darts may not be held high enough to engage with the conveyor belt. These problems become more apparent at higher ROF, and occur far more frequently than the Rapidstrike's issues. None of these problems present an issue with pretty much any other blaster I have, which as I mentioned in my review, for me is unacceptable. There are other issues I have with the Hyperfire, but there's more than enough here already, and I've gone through them in my review anyway.
The Rapidstrike gets the easy win here.
Capacity: The Rapidstrike comes with a clear 18 mag, while the Hyperfire comes with a 25 drum.
Obviously the Hyperfire wins here.
Value for Money: When the Rapidstrike was more widely available, it was typically priced at 50-60AUD, with sales typically taking it down to around 40AUD. The Hyperfire is currently available for 80-90AUD, and sales typically bring it down to around 60AUD. For me, the deciding factor here is the Hyperfire's many issues, and general lack of impressiveness of it out of box. For me, the Rapidstrike is just cheap enough to justify having just the blaster and a single mag, and for the most part functions just fine. The Hyperfire however is an extremely expensive blaster that has a lot of problems out of box, and doesn't include all that much.
I'm giving this round to the Rapidstrike based on how disappointed and annoyed I was with the overall Hyperfire package compared to the Rapidstrike.

The Rapidstrike has won 3 rounds, while the Hyperfire has won 2, so I declare the Rapidstrike to be the better overall stock blaster. It's a bit of a toss up really. The usability was the main drawback to the Hyperfire. If you're willing to do very basic mods, or get one that is more reliable, then the Hyperfire is a lot less bad, and although it is still slightly inferior to a Rapidstrike for reliability, is a lot of fun and much easier to set up well and use. For modding purposes I'd say the Hyperfire is easier to do than a Rapidstrike as it has more space to fit switches, and for me was just generally easier to set up. A Rapidstrike will still yield better overall results however, partly due to the Hyperfire's canted flywheel cage throwing everything else off, and partly due to the Rapidstrike pusher's superior reliability. I personally far prefer the Rapidstrike, though that's probably biased from the Rapidstrike being first.

6 comments:

  1. Love the site. You've got so much information here it'll take days to glean everything off of it! I've never owned a Rapidstrike, having entered the Nerf mod foray starting with the Hyperfire. That being said, I've got MTB Rhinos running the flywheels and conveyor belt, all fed with 3S Lipo. The belt motor has an electric brake, helping to spin it down way faster than stock. I don't have any scientific studies, but in observation it seems that a quick pull of the trigger yields a single dart; a slightly longer hold is a two-round burst fire; and obviously holding down the trigger yields full auto.

    I fully agree with you on the Hyperfire being finicky about darts. Old, noodly-like darts will sometimes jam, and when they do get fed they whirly bird out of control. But, for the most part, the grouping is roughly within 1 meter at 25m (with the occasional outlier). The high speed of the belt also has a tendency to clip off pieces of the rear ends of darts, but I think it's about one in every 20-30 darts.

    Anyhow, great work, keep it up. Looking forward to seeing some more experimental stuff

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  2. I personally prefer the Hyperfire: one, it is my primary; 2, the rapidstrikes are the jam kings of nerf.

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    1. You clearly haven't used a Raider then.

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    2. Actually, I have used several. They aren't all that bad.

      Although not all raiders jam, just to be fair, not all rapidstrikes I have had Jammed. I never really was able to use one in a nerf war, but a friend has trouble with his.

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    3. (Coming back months after to say that my top comment was a foolish one. I clearly hadn't used a rapidstrike...Which I hadn't. Now that I used them, I like them a lot better.)

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