The CS2 from Eclipse was such a popular gun that naturally, I was excited to try out it’s replacement the CS3. So I did what I always do when new stuff comes out, go to Sac Paintball and decide what color I want to buy. We did a part swap and I ended up with this silver and black.
Since the Emek came out 5 years ago I’ve used it almost every week I’ve played with it a lot, I never do any maintenance, never changed an o-ring, I just use it and the thing keeps shooting, the same with the high-end guns from Planet Eclipse, they require little maintenance and just keep working.
I’ve used all of the Eclipse guns, the Emek and the Geo 3.5 have been my favorite so far, and the CS3 reminds me of how my Geo3.5 shoots, perfect. It doesn’t shot exactly the same and it sounds a little different, but its has the same shot that I loved from my 3.5. Three years ago Eclipse did try and recreate the love people had for the 3.5 with the Geo4, but most people still choose the CS2 over the Geo4. The CS2 had nicer features, and for me it shoot better.
Saying “I love the way the CS3 shoots” doesn’t mean that the CS2 shoots wildly differently from the CS3; it just feels a little nicer when it does. That’s likely because the CS3 has an updated version of the GammaCore bolt system called the OP Core. Planet Eclipse has increased the valve chamber by 50%, which lowers the operating pressure slightly. Eclipse says the CS2 runs at 105 psi, and the CS3 can go as low as 95 psi, so technically lower, but not by a lot. That added volume also increases the air efficiency by about 10-15%
CS3 comes with the new S63 barrel system. You get a back, tip, and .685 and .689 inserts. Barrels are barrels to me. If they are made well, they will work well. The Eclipse barrels are obviously made very well. You can get different inserts from Eclipse or even Inception Designs for sizes that Eclipse doesn’t offer. You can also get different barrel tips from Infamous. It’s a cool system that works great.
The regulator in the CS3 is the SL5 is the same as the one in the CS2 and is located in the same spot in the grip-frame. Now, the CS3, LV2, and 180R share a lot of the same electronics. Like I said, it makes it easier for Eclipse to get parts and for dealers to have parts. They need one board to fit many guns, rather than many boards for many guns. From a user’s perspective, it’s just different, not worse, and maybe better because parts can be a bit cheaper.
- Low-rise aluminum clamping feed-neck
- Quick-release back cap
- Tool-less bolt removal
- Aluminum adjustable blade trigger
- 14.5" 2-piece Shaft 5 barrel - Cocker fast threads
The CS3 still feels great, although it’s a bit longer now. The front fore-grip remains identical and still feels great. There are still two AA batteries inside, and the battery cover slides off just as easily as before. However, removing the rear grips is a bit harder now. You have to unclip them like normal, but now you have to pop up the bolt to get to the back grip off. The new grips hold the new navigation console with rubber buttons, which I really like. The OLED display is really bright and clear. I also appreciate how the grips now go all the way around the back of the gun, making it look and feel really good. In my opinion, these are still the best grips in paintball.
CS3 still has the best break beam eyes, Eclipse’s light-pipe system. The IR sensors are located on a board that goes between the body and frame, with the eyes peering out just enough to direct the IR beam through a prism in the eyes cover into the breech. This design makes the inside of the gun cleaner, with the prism light-pipe piece fitting perfectly and leaving no gaps for paint or dirt to get into. Although there are a few small spots where this can occur, other guns have more room for broken paint to work its way around and block the eyes. Additionally, the smooth sides of the breech help clean the light pipe, with every bolt cycle running an o-ring over it and keeping it clean – similar to the way the eye-pipe in Dye guns operates.
I really like the CS3. I didn’t enjoy using the CS1 as much because it was too big. The CS2 felt too small for me, but the CS3 strikes the perfect balance. The added length and grip-frame changes make it feel perfect in my hands. In my opinion, it is the best high-end gun that Eclipse has produced since the Geo3.5. Overall, the CS3 is an awesome gun and the best one available right now.