Best Paintball Hopper/Loader Reviews: Buying Guide

Performance is key when playing paintball. One of the elements which determine your success is the quality of the hopper. Paintball loaders or hoppers are units which used to store and load paintballs into the firing chamber of the paintball marker.

There are many hoppers in the market which make the selection process quite overwhelming. You have to take the time to look for the ideal hopper which matches your needs. Loaders vary with cost, design, capacity, material construction, price and more.



Best Paintball Loaders Compared and Reviewed

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Proto Primo Paintball Hopper

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Playing paintball is, by all means, a fun hobby. However, there are some people out there that play it competitively. If you are one of these individuals, you probably already know that you need everything you can get to ascertain the edge over your competition. And, that is exactly what the Proto Primo Paintball Hopper will give you. With the ability to hold two hundred paintballs, you will have a maximum amount of ammunition to take out your opposing targets. And, this is only the start of what this impressive accessory has to offer.

This innovative hopper features a positive feed shelf. This gravity-fed feature allows shooters to achieve high rates of fire. This is not only going to make your shots more accurate and faster, but it is going to reduce the number of jams that you experience. And, jams are not something that you want to experience in the heat of battle.

The Proto Primo Paintball Hopper features a spring-loaded lid, which makes loading the hopper easier and quicker than ever. Simply pop open the lid, pour in your paintballs, close the lid, and you will be ready to hit the battlefield fully loaded within just a matter of minutes.


Virtue Spire IR Electronic Paintball Loader/Hopper

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The Virtue Spire paintball loader has a clever spring-loaded anti-jam drive mechanism slides underneath and pushes jams out before they accumulate. The Virtue Spire is designed with a slide to lock quick release mechanism which makes it easy to disassemble the unit.

The Spire makes use of Optimal Crown SF technology to change the loaders speed back and forth. The transition from speed feed to lid takes place in seconds. It is also designed with a shot activated sensor and a jam-proof feeding system. This loader has a capacity to hold up to 200 balls.

The Virtue Spire is aggressive looking, lightweight and compact. It holds more paint than most models in the market. It is easy to clean, and the battery life is a bit longer. The design allows for a smaller profile. The speed-feed installation is easy as well as the disassembly process of the whole unit.

It is a bit expensive and has a tendency to load balls when none are loaded. Power consumption is too high when running sensitivity. It is also a bit noisy.


Empire Halo Too Paintball Loader

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The Empire Halo Too paintball loader has a capacity of holding 180 balls, and a lightweight loader feeds at least 20 balls per second. It has been endorsed by paintball pros as the best loader in the price bracket. It makes use of an ultra-quiet drive which force-feeds the balls. This allows your marker to throw many paintballs and get through a lot of paint to the opponent.

The  Halo is a leader regarding convenience for it provides a battery indicator. This prevents abrupt shut down while in use. In terms of materials, the Empire Halo paintball is made of a polycarbonate which is capable of withstanding impacts. The Empire makes use of the Anti-Jam Freeway technology which keeps the loader free from jamming and breaking paintballs. This makes you competitive by allowing you to shot while others are stuck scrapping their paint.

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An onboard computer is used to direct sound-activated feeding as well as program the motor speed, microphone sensitivity and track the feed stack. The Empire Halo costs almost less than half the price of some top paintball loaders. The combination of its price and performance makes it a favorite choice for many players.

The Empire Halo Too has a high capacity, is fast and adjustable with the ability to feed 20 balls per second going upwards. The Empire is jam resistant which gives you several hours of running, bumping and spraying. It is affordable given its performance. It is a smart model given anti-jam, automated feed, and monitoring thus making its one of the better paintball hoppers.

The marker is a bit loud since the motor can be heard over many shots. Battery harness wires are a bit fragile. The disassembly process is very hectic, and wiring is too messy.


Dye LT-R Electronic Paintball Loader

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If you want to get ahead in the competitive world of paintball, you are going to need the right accessories. This is exactly where the Dye LT-R Electronic Paintball Loader will come in handy. The LT-R is just the latest addition to the DYE family, but it certainly is innovative and offers features that you need to get out ahead of the competition.

When you are on the battlefield you are going to need an abundance of ammunition. With the two hundred ball capacity that the LT-R provides, you can rest assured that you will have plenty of ammunition to take down your targets.

The adjustable feed tension really allows players to customize their hopper to meet their shooting needs. Not only does the LT-R offer a customizable experience, but it also features a built-in anti-jam sharkfin. You can pump as many paintballs through this hopper at any rate you want and you can rest assured that you will never experience any jams. And, jams are not something that you want to experience in the heat of battle.


Virtue Spire III Electronic Paintball Hopper

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When you first lay eyes on the Spire III it is going to be hard not to fall in love right away. The bright neon green color scheme certainly offers something that looks out of this world. However, the looks alone are not the only things that can be boated about this hopper. Just look at the capacity. The Spire III is literally capable of holding 280 paintball, which is more than the models mentioned above.

When you are fast firing it can be hard to keep track of your ammo. This is especially true when the adrenaline is pumping and paintballs are flying all around you. You never want to find yourself in a spot where you are empty on ammo and this is where the Spire III excels. It features a dual LED reload indicator that will let you know when you need to reload. The hopper also sounds an alarm when you need to reload.

The Spire III might be a remake of the original Spire, but it certainly comes with improved performance. The Spire III has an improved drive cone, software, and motor, which overall improves the rate of fire. The Spire III is literally able to feed around 19 balls per minute while the original Spire only fed 15.

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Dye Precision Rotor Paintball Loader

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The Dye Precision Rotor hopper exceeds pro level feed requirements with the ability to feed more than 50 balls per second. This is one of the features that pros consider a good paintball hopper should have. A unique center feed design allows you to push balls straight over a shorter distance thus giving loading allowances.

The unit can be easily broken down for cleaning and maintenance at the push of a button; you only have to slide a locking tab and push a button to break down the loader. A transparent locking lid is incorporated into the interchangeable dual density carrier and a viewing window is installed providing the ability to monitor the paint. It is designed with a spring tension lid which allows faster loading as well as securing the lock on the loader.

The carrier design allows for quick change between the lid and fan speed and an Allen wrench can be used to tune the torque setting manually. A Sharkfin Jam Release Trigger gets you back into the game in case of over-sized or out-of-round paint. Only 3 AA batteries are capable of over 100,000 ball shots.

With the Dye Precision Rotor you can turn the LED indicator off at night or during low light games. The coated board is water resistant making it fully functional underwater. It has an impressive capacity which keeps you in the game. It does not jam even after putting a full box. It easy to clean and maintain. It offers access, fine adjustments and longer battery life.

This loader is a bit heavier compared to its peers. There is no indicator for low balls which makes the rotating loud during the emptying process.


Types of Paintball Hoppers

Gravity Feed Hoppers rely on gravity to draw their paintballs into the chamber. Their design is simple, but the feed rate is slow, rated at eight balls per second. A low feed rate can cause balls to be jammed inside the hopper. Gravity Feed Hoppers are designed to be used with mechanical markers.

Electronic Hoppers use electronic agitators to increase the feed rate. They can be used with both mechanical and electronic markers. Loaders are also classified based on the feed rate. Here we have beginner loaders, mid-level loaders, and high-end loaders. Hoppers also differ regarding activation systems. We have sound, eye and cyclone feeding systems.

Things To Look For When Buying a Paintball Hopper/Loader

Consider a loader with a high or desirable feed rate. It determines how many balls can be filled into the marker’s firing chamber per second. Sound activated feeds allow the marker to track firing and switches. Choose a hopper which has a more silent operation but not too much to the extent that the microphone finds it hard to pick up sound for activating the feed motor. A good hopper should provide a long battery life. It should also offer feed rate adjustments and free-jam mechanisms. Select models which are easy to disassemble. A quality hopper should also provide access to the chamber and a light indicator for convenience.