Posted on April 08 2021
The Shocker Amp and Dye DSR are two of the most popular mid-level electric paintball guns available. Both of these markers have some amazing features including top grade barrels, amazing bolt systems, and amazing ergonomics. If you are interested in purchasing either of these paintball guns, we are here to anoint a winner on which is our favorite.
The Shocker Amp is the newest evolution of one of the longest lines of electric paintball guns, the notorious Shocker Paintball Gun. The Shocker was re-introduced in roughly 2015 with the Shocker RSX. The Shocker RSX had some nice features that were similar to the earlier models, the Shocker SFT and NXT but the RSX also had some key differences including a smaller profile and a gas-thru trigger frame. The Shocker RSX quickly proved to be a very reliable high end electric paintball gun and gained popularity after a lull in not having Shocker markers for quite some time.
The Shocker XLS was later released in 2017-2018 and was an improvement on the RSX featuring a larger volume chamber which decreased the operating pressure. The XLS also had a smaller ASA knob to make it more ergonomically friendly. The barrel on the Xtra long shocker (XLS) was upgraded to the new freak flagship barrel, the Freak XL barrel. The Freak XL was a new concept of featuring a longer control bore (the area of the barrel that the paintball gains velocity with a tight fit) which improves efficiency, accuracy, and consistency.
The Shocker Amp has now even become a greater version of the Shocker with a few upgraded features from the XLS. First, the Amp core is different than the bolt system of the XLS and RSX. The Amp bolt is much smaller than the XLS creating a much smaller moving mass. The Shocker Amp ASA is still a turn knob but has a more refined ASA knob which is more shaved down and rounded than the XLS ASA knob. The bolt removal system of the Amp is also different than the XLS. Lastly, the Amp is going to feature a CC (classic conversion) mechanical frame which only requires one Allen screw to change between electric and mechanical.
The Dye DSR is a unique paintball gun to the Dye family of paintball guns. It is one of the first mid level electric paintball guns offered by Dye Paintball. The Dye DSR was released in order to offer paintball players a more affordable option to get a competitive paintball gun without having to spend over $1000. The Dye DSR has some similar features to other Dye markers including the M2, Dye NT, and M3+. The DSR shoots very smooth and is definitely a great marker to consider in the mid level market including the Shocker Amp, Gtek 170R and MacDev XDR.
Today, we are here to compare the Dye DSR to the Shocker Amp as they are probably the most price comparable of the mid level electric paintball gun market.
When purchasing the Dye DSR or Shocker Amp, consideration of the case that comes with the paintball markers. The Dye DSR comes in a nice hard zipper case. Opening the case reveals Dye Slick lube, an allen key set, the matching UL Barrel, a plain black cloth barrel cover, quick start guide, 9 Volt battery, USB data cable, parts kit with color coded o-rings, and the DSR.
The Shocker Amp also comes with a harder (although softer than the DSR case) zippered case with a stylish carbon fiber design. Inside the Shocker Amp case lies a shocker style cloth barrel cover, a quick start guide, parts kit with additional o-rings (screws and parts as well), DOW33 lube, allen key set (much better quality than the DSR allen keys), matching Freak XL barrel with 0.687 XL insert, and the Shocker Amp.
Overall, the Shocker Amp wins the packaging war as the case is nicer than the DSR case. The cheap allen key set and barrel cover was a big turn off with the additional parts with the DSR paintball gun. Dye could have very easily included a Dye branded barrel cover and a better quality allen key set without increasing their price of production by much.
The Dye DSR barrel is called the "core" Dye Barrel which is a slightly modified UL back. The barrel back is 0.688 bore size and threads to normal UL barrel fronts. It is not the longer control bore of the Dye UL-S that comes with the Dye M3+. The core barrel features a common bore size but only has one barrel back upon purchase. The UL tip is the standard Dye ultralite tip that has been one of the best selling barrel systems of all time. The Dye UL has notoriously been known for it's extreme accuracy and quiet sound signature. Many intermediate to advanced paintball players upgrade to the Dye UL for this reason.
The Shocker Amp features the Freak XL barrel system featuring aluminum barrel sleeves that slide in and out. The Freak XL barrel comes with the All American tip (spiral porting) and comes standard with one XL insert size 0.687 which comes standard with every other Shocker and Luxe paintball gun. The sound signature of the Freak XL is not quite as good as the UL system of the Dye DSR. However, it is much cheaper to purchase additional barrel inserts for the Freak XL ($14.95) as compared to purchasing additional UL barrel backs at $50 per back. For this reason, the Freak XL system of the Amp wins.
The Shocker Amp feedneck features a latch mechanism with thumbwheel to easily adjust the tightness while holding your paintball loader. The feedneck is all aluminum and has a latch that is crimped down to fully tighten your loader.
The Dye DSR Lock Down 2 feedneck is very stylish and is slightly less tall than the Amp feedneck. This makes for a lower paintball gun profile which is nice for snap shooting. The DSR feedneck does not have a thumbwheel and is adjusted using the rotation of the latch to loosen and tighten your loader when attached. Overall, the DSR feedneck seems to be a little more stylish while the Amp feedneck may be more functional due to the presence of the thumbwheel.
The Shocker Amp features the new Amp core. The Amp core is completely redesigned from the Shocker XLS and has a much lower operating pressure (105-110 PSI vs. 170-180 PSI of the Shocker XLS). The Amp bolt is much smaller and has less moving mass than that of the Shocker XLS and even the Dye DSR. The integrated QEV for better cycle to cycle consistency and faster response time. Removal of the bolt is achieved by twisting the bolt cap a quarter turn counterclockwise and pulling out.
The ARC bolt system is new to the Dye platform of guns. Dye touts that the Arc bolt has "optimized flow paths, independent valve control, air supply cut off, and nearly zero chamber expansion are all critical to the ARC's outstanding air efficiency." We definitely love the way that the Dye DSR shoots as it still gives the signature Dye shot while offering much better efficiency. Removal of the Arc bolt is achieved by a push button located on the back of the frame and pulling out.
Overall, we have to give the Dye DSR the upper hand when it comes to the bolt design. The softer and quieter shot of the DSR is highly contagious while still offering great efficiency and paint handling. Upgrade to the DSR bolt can be made including the Flex Face bolt and Flex Flow can. Removal of the ARC bolt is slightly easy using the push button instead of the twist knob of the Amp Core.
Trigger Frame & Ergonomics:
The Shocker Amp features a slightly modified trigger frame from the Shocker XLS. The trigger guard is squared instead of rounded. The AMP trigger is no longer a scythe style trigger but now comes stock with a blade trigger. The Shocker Amp trigger uses stainless steel roller bearings to create a super smooth trigger pull. The 4 way adjustability of the Amp trigger allows you to adjust pre-travel, post-travel, magnetic resistance, and firing point. One screw is used to install and/or remove the trigger to make it easy to clean or change triggers. Lastly, the solid aluminum construction makes the trigger feel extra sturdy with little flex.
Ergonomics of the Shocker Amp are very nice overall with the small and slim aluminum trigger frame. The Amp is extremely light weighing in at 1 pound 12.1 ounces. The extended feel of the foregrip (where the regulator is housed) makes for comfortable snap shooting and laning. The Amp grips are different from the XLS grips as the front grip is much thinner. This can almost make for a weird feeling in the hands for larger paintball players as the foregrip is very small. Not to worry as you can interchange the front grip with the XLS or RSX. The rear trigger grip of the Amp is different and is designed to be more water tight. For this reason, the Amp grip kits are different.
The Dye DSR features the TruCam Airport Edge1 trigger. The aluminum construction is similar to the Amp but the DSR trigger does seem to flex more. The DSR trigger frame also features the UL frame which is an hourglass frame for extreme comforability in the hands. Weight of the Dye DSR is 1 pound 13 ounces which makes it hard to determine any difference in weight between the two guns. The DSR is not as long as the Amp and the distance between the trigger guard to the foregrip is not as large making it harder to fully grip the gun with players with larger hands. The front grip seats the 9V battery and can easily be accessed by turning the bottom knob 180 degrees and pulling down.
Ergonomically, both guns are great in the hands but the DSR feels better to us here at Punisher's. The Edge1 trigger coupled with the UL frame and thicker foregrip makes our hands feel more at home.
Both guns feature a OLED board that has many different adjustments including fire mode, dwell, rate of fire, and more. The MOS high contrast OLED board of the DSR uses a 5 point joystick to alternate between profile selection (2 adjustable profiles), play screen, and settings.
The Shocker Amp features a high constrast OLED board as well with one power button. The power button can be used in conjuction with the trigger to enter into the settings of the Shocker Amp. There are no different profiles with the Shocker Amp and the Shocker Amp does not have an audible beep during powering on and powering off.
For this reason, the electronics of the DSR OLED board win due to the extra tunability of the marker.
Overall Impressions / Summary:
Either of these mid-level electronic guns are going to deliver high end paintball gun performance at a fraction of the price. The Shocker Amp is the newer of the 2 and fits very comfortably in the hands. The Amp core is about as smooth of a bolt system that can be offered in the current market. On the other hand, the DSR also features an extremely robust and reliable platform that has been proven over time. The DSR feels phenomenal in the hands and shoots even better. Either one of these guns will make just about anyone happy, but if we have to pick a winner we choose the Dye DSR. The DSR wins due to the better ergonomics, smooth shots, comparable efficiency, better stock color options, and easier bolt removal system.
We hope that you enjoyed our in depth comparison of these 2 markers. Please contact us at our Ohio Paintball store or on social media with any questions / comments!