Saturday, 23 April 2011

Airsoft Arms and Accessories: A-TACS Camo

I have decided to draw together all posts related to airsoft weaponry and equipment under one heading, starting with this post, as part and parcel of my attempt to give the blog a bit more 'structure', and more of an 'e-zine' type of feel

The heading is the one you can see referred to in the title, 'Airsoft Arms and Accessories', and the subject matter of this inaugural post is one around which there is quite some considerable 'buzz' just now, the recently designed, and newly available, A-TACS camouflage system designed by DCS in America

There's a great deal of interest in this camo at the moment, as I've already noted in an earlier post back in March, with a number of players at my regular site investing in A-TACS patterned Masada AEG's, and there's a load more 'stuff' starting to hit the shelves allowing you to personally customise, or pimp up, an existing gun, or order one ready made with all those essential, and other not-quite-so-essential, A-TACS bits and pieces bolted on before it leaves the store

This post isn't about that, it's about the clothing, now readily available thanks to Propper International

If you've been following the rollout of this gear at all then you may already have read this but, for the sake of completeness, here's some slightly amended advertising copy regarding the relative virtues of the new design

A-TACS® was developed by Digtal Concealment Systems, (DCS), to answer the call for a better and more effective camouflage pattern for use by military and law enforcement personnel. A-TACS® is designed to be a universal pattern suitable for a wide range of operational environments and, although produced solely in the “arid” pattern at the time of writing, additional colour and design variants are in the pipeline

Many of the modern digital camouflage patterns currently in use have their flaws. The square pixels used to create the distortion effect do not replicate the shapes, forms and shadows of the environment they are deployed in, especially when viewed through optics. The ninety-degree angles and limited use of natural colours can, in many cases, make detection easier

Additionally, the “visual noise” in these patterns tends to make them ‘unify’, or close-up, into a solid colour, producing a “blobbing” effect when viewed from a distance. A-TACS® addresses and improves on these critical issues in three main ways:

1. Firstly, unnatural square pixels are replaced with organic pixels. Using a patented process, DCS have created a palette of natural colours, digitally sampled from real-world elements in carefully controlled lighting. The complex camo pattern is then created using a mathematical algorithm that writes “organically-shaped” pixels using the specific color information given. The resulting pattern is still produced digitally but is far more natural, or organic, in appearance

2. Secondly, A-TACS uses small patterns to create larger, more distinct, shapes designed to work at a distance. Small shapes create larger shapes and larger shapes are organized into a distinct pattern with no horizontal or vertical orientation. This unique “pattern within a pattern” concept allows A-TACS® to effectively break the human outline at greater distances, thereby minimizing the “blobbing” or unifying effect found with other patterns

3. Finally, more effective use is made of colour, resulting in much better concealment. A-TACS® is created using a far greater range of inter-mingled, natural colours than was previously possible. The overall base colour for the initial colour way is a neutral tan which is designed for use in open, rocky or arid environments

Visit for more information

So, what do you do if you like the sound of this and want to try it out? Well, a good airsoft acquaintance of mine from Fireball has just acquired some and will be 'play testing' it at Fireball in May, at our regular woodland game. I hope to have some photos to show you and a few words, by way of a review, to go with them. You don't have to wait until then, though. Why not jump straight in at the deep end, and go with your instinct?

The boots are made by Danner. Not cheap, but you get what you pay for! You can just see yourself in it, right? Just about?

Then, the really important thing to know is that this gear is now commercially available through Propper International, who have been working in tandem with DCS and recently unveiled their A-TACS range of clothing at the 2011 Shot Show. PI is a well respected clothing manufacturer that has been outfitting US military and LE professionals since the late 1960s, and anyone who owns any of their garments can testify to the fact that they are very well made [being sewn to military specifications and made from 'ripstop' fabric] and, at the same time, very reasonably priced

Curiously, having had a long hard look at the PI website last night, I couldn't find any examples of this new range on there, but the stuff is most definitely for sale! You can buy it directly from the US, from ACU.Com or, if you prefer, from at least two major retailers right here in the UK, Tactical Quartermaster and Landwarrior Airsoft

A screenshot from the ACU.Com website, followed by..... from the LWA website. They appear to be doing quite a good deal on a uniform set!
So, 'you pays your money and makes your choice', or rather the other way round! The friend I mentioned earlier from Fireball bought his direct from the other side of the pond, I think I'm right in saying. If I'm wrong, then I'll let you know next time. In the meantime, happy hunting!

1 comment:

Chris said...

I got my top and bottom from land warrior - when they were £10 each cheaper :) my pouches all camr direct from T.A.G. in the usa and lastly masada and m4 from ehobby in hk good times thou i must say if u see the atacs dytec holster most glocks including all tm ones dont fit :(