We decided to draw a comparison between some popular brushes on the market which we seem to be getting a lot of questions about. At the end of the day, as I’m sure you have already heard a million times…it all depends on what you need out of the brush. There isn’t one brush that fits all, but with that being said… How does each of these brushes perform individually? How do you know which brush is right for your needs? This is exactly what we dive into with this comparison, check out what we found.
Before we get too deep into each brush, all 6 models were tested under the same conditions: using a powerful 110lpm compressor, fine and thin paint (which didn’t cause any clogging issues on any of the models) and all were sprayed over a heavy paper.
The first brush we tested was the GSI Creos PS270 with a .2mm nozzle. This is a high-quality airbrush made in Japan, feels solid in your hands and we liked that it offers a pretty wide variety of patterns from tiny fine lines to thick round spray which covers large areas quickly. The only thing we didn’t like was the cleaning process with this airbrush, it has a small nozzle, as all Japanese airbrushes do, which is easy to break when installing after a full cleaning.
Overall score of this airbrush is very high, especially for its price which is around $100.
The next one was its cooler, big brother – the GSI Creos PS770 custom with a .18mm nozzle. This airbrush has a lot of features and they are all fully functional. We liked that the trigger tension is adjustable, the air regulator under the paint cup works very well and trigger control is superior. Something that really stands out with this airbrush are the fine lines produced by this airbrush, but at the same time, we felt like it was limited only to fine lines and detail work. The previous model, PS270, had almost the same nozzle size but it functioned with a much wider pattern variety. The PS770 is going to be a second airbrush for fine detail, which it does great; but for background work and other larger projects, you will need another primary airbrush that can cover space more effectively.
The legendary Infinity airbrush made by Harder and Steenbeck went next. You can feel the German design and manufacturing quality as soon as you take this airbrush in your hands. It’s a piece of art and works accordingly. Superior control, feels like it reads your mind and does exactly what you want. We used Createx Wicked paint for this test and didn’t have any clogging issues with the .15mm nozzle on this airbrush, which is the smallest one on the market. This airbrush is super easy to clean and we like the fact that the nozzle sets and paint cups are interchangeable and you can turn this airbrush into a heavy-duty sprayer with a .6mm nozzle set and 50ml gravity cup. However, it all comes with a price. From everything we’ve tested today this is the most expensive brush and that could be considered a negative, depending on how you look at it.
A model from one of the oldest airbrush manufacturers out there – next we tested the Paasche Vision with a .2mm nozzle. Made in the USA, well-built and comfortable handling. The Paasche Vision features a versatile spraying range, from tiny lines to a pretty wide pattern. Another nice feature is that the air regulator is fully functional and works pretty well. The Vision does have a slightly different character than Japanese airbrushes, but you get used to it quick enough. It comes with a specific air connector fitting size though, so you can’t use it with a standard 1/8” air hose without an adapter which is usually NOT included with the airbrush and that’s something to keep in mind. You will either need to buy an adaptor for the correct fitting size or buy a hose that is made to fit the diameter of the Paasche Vision airbrush.
Next in line is the Badger Xtreme airbrush. It’s extreme because it doesn’t have any needle protection! Although we like that the needle tip is easy accessible to remove dry paint and it is a good airbrush for experienced users, I doubt we will be giving these to our beginner students because of the bare needle tip. Overall it is a good airbrush with precise control and the ability to produce fine lines, as well as beautiful gradients. One thing to note is that the air regulator doesn’t work too well on this airbrush, we would recommend to keep it wide open all the time. Also, some effort is required for disassembly but the cleaning process was quick and easy.
The last one for today is the Sotar airbrush. We heard a lot of good things about it, mostly for scale modelers, so the expectations were pretty high and it didn’t quite meet all of them. This is a very light airbrush with a comfortable grip. The needle can be removed from the back with the handle on, which is the quickest needle-out we’ve seen. The trigger control felt pretty rough though and it takes time to get used to. It does spray nicely, but it’s a little sharp on action and you can see this from the picture – it came out with the most contrast out of all others and a little too dark. Brushing 2-3 more images with this airbrush would most likely be enough to get used to its trigger control and do a better job. Taking it apart for cleaning was another disappointment. The parts on the head are small, probably the smallest air cap we ever seen and they were all over-tightened so it required pliers to loosen them. We did this carefully with some fabric between the metals to protect the parts from being damaged, but we still ended up scratching them. If we decide to make this model available for our students, we will have to prepare them first with additional lubrication and re-assemble them by hand.
That concludes this session’s thoughts and observations…. Please let us know if this information was useful (or if you need more) and in the meantime, we will continue testing and comparing other airbrushes.
Thank you for watching!