Hey everyone,

Today I’m continuing the HPA posts for December with my review on the Valken V12 Optima BLOCK-I DST as featured in my HPA set-up post!

Let’s talk about the externals first of all! The V12 Optima BLOCK-I DST has a lightweight polymer upper and lower receiver with a 9.5" modular polymer free float rail system. Its free float rail system has a full-length top rail for Picatinny mounted optics and accessories, included in the box are fibre reinforced polymer front and rear adjustable sights. Inside the free float rail system is a 9.5" aluminium outer barrel and flash hider with a 14mm cc thread. It features a Nylon plus fibre pistol grip, an adjustable crane stock and a single point steel sling mount point.

It has some pretty decent internal features including an enhanced Nylon adjustable rotary style Hop-Up, a 6.03mm Diameter Copper Inner Barrel, a pre-installed Valken V12 engine, the Valken V-12 Grip Connect System. It has trigger/LED trigger controlled programming that doesn’t need any tools or disassembly that controls everything from nozzle-timing to rounds per second. One of the clever features the rifle has is the program lock-out mode which allows the player to limit their rounds per second and fire modes to encourage fair play, and to comply with different rule sets and site limits.

How easy are they to use? Well, this is definitely something you want to read the manual for as HPA systems aren’t ‘plug a battery in then go’ like regular AEGs. In fact, when I got this out of the box and hooked it all up I managed to completely mess up the nozzle timing settings (meaning it didn’t feed) when playing about with the FCU. After I did a factory reset, which is easy to do and is detailed in the manual, it was smooth sailing from there. The factory settings are the recommended settings so if you are a complete HPA beginner, like me – run the rifle on its factory settings! The adjustment to HPA is an interesting one as there are so many other factors to think about, from learning how to use the regulator to setting the pressure it can be a little overwhelming, but the benefits for me definitely outweigh the positives.

How does it run? This is the thing, HPA systems are REALLY fun to use, and they’re pretty quiet which can be advantageous. I have put this through 3 game days and I was most impressed with its performance outdoors in sub-zero temperatures. It was consistent even in the cold, the range was really impressive and I didn’t mind the tank and line. How quiet it is made it easy for me to sneak around the woodland terrain with ease even when taking out members of the opposite team.

It is available in two colours – either full flat black or flat black and tan. It retails for $379.70 on the Valken website which to us in the UK is around £283.85.

Check out the Valken V12 Optima BLOCK-I DST here

Post sponsored by Valken Tactical

Photography thanks to Pewpewpatriot

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