Evanix Rex Air Rifle Test Review .22 Cal
Doug Rogers, Stephen Archer
13 August 2016
Supplied by Air Venturi.
Remarkably small and light.
Consistent trigger pull.
Requires the right pellets for accuracy.
Yes, that's really loud...
VALUE FOR MONEY
At a Street Price of $700 (plus scope), the Evanix Rex air rifle faces some formidable competition in the marketplace. There’s a slew of other strong, capable PCP hunting air rifles available in the $650 – $750 price range from big names such as Hatsan, Benjamin, Sumatra and Air Force – among others. That’s some serious competition!
As a single-shot model with interchangeable, rear-mounted HPA tank and a similar power level, the Rex is probably most comparable to the Air Force Condor, which sells for only $7 more. The Condor is a long-running model with a great reputation among users. The Evanix is new, more compact and lighter. They’re both clearly aimed at the dedicated airgun hunter.
As HAM has not reviewed the AirForce Condor yet, we can’t give a detailed comparison of test results between these two guns. The Evanix Rex air rifle is priced to compete directly with the market leader and it’s a close match on a feature and specifications basis. The choice is yours!
|HAM Test Rating||81%|
|Value For Money||The most compact hunting air rifle at this power level.|
|Best Pellet Tested||H&N Baracuda Match|
|Street Price at Time of Test||$699 + Scope|
Easy to Shoot
BUY FROM PYRAMYD AIR
Evanix Rex Air Rifle
BUY FROM AIRGUN DEPOT
EVANIX REX AIR RIFLE
SPEED AND ACCURACY
The Evanix Rex air rifle tested by HAM gave strong performance in power and muzzle velocity. Although the peak muzzle velocity was achieved – as expected – with light alloy pellets, most airgun hunters will be using heavier, domed lead pellets to obtain the maximum Muzzle Energy, or knock-down power.
The highest muzzle energy achieved in HAM testing came from heavy, 21.14 Grain, H&N Baracuda Match pellets. These gave a whopping 43.18 Ft/Lb of muzzle energy: a very high figure for a .22 caliber air rifle.
As it happened, the Evanix Rex air rifle tested by HAM also gave its best accuracy with the Baracuda Match pellets. There’s no need to look further for ammo for this gun!
Yet, unusually, the Evanix Rex air rifle also shot well with ultra-light alloy pellets.
But it has to be said that, overall, accuracy was “so-so”. The HAM testers found that they could typically place the first 3 or 4 shots in a tight group, but then the group would “string” down the target, almost inevitably, as you can see from the test targets below.
This vertical stringing was more than we expected from the actual shot-to-shot fall in muzzle velocity. But it was definitely there, except with the heavy H&N Baracuda Match pellets. There’s a definite need to carefully select the pellets you use with the Rex, but the Baracudas certainly make a good starting point.
|Pellet||Average Muzzle Velocity||Average Muzzle Energy||Accuracy|
|Gamo Raptor Platinum 9.7 Grain||1171.67 FPS||29.58 Ft/Lbs||Very Good.|
|H&N Field Target Trophy Green 10.03 Grain||1172.21 FPS||30.61 Ft/Lbs||Good.|
|RWS Hobby 11.9 Grain||1097.93 FPS||31.86 Ft/Lbs||Poor.|
|Crosman Premier HP 14.3 Grain||1053.43 FPS||35.25 Ft/Lbs||Poor.|
|JSB Jumbo Exact 14.35 Grain||1057.62 FPS||35.65 Ft/Lbs||Poor.|
|H&N Field Target Trophy 14.66 Grain||1056.48 FPS||36.34 Ft/Lbs||Poor.|
|H&N Baracuda Match 21.14 Grain||958.95 FPS||43.18 Ft/Lbs||Excellent. Best Tested.|
BUY FROM PYRAMYD AIR
H&N Barracuda Match pellets, .22 caliber
BUY FROM AIRGUN DEPOT
H&N Baracuda Match Pellets .22 Cal
TRIGGER AND COCKING EFFORT
Evanix air rifles have somewhat of a reputation for being different. They certainly stand out from the crowd in many respects with their creative designs. The Evanix Rex air rifle doesn’t disappoint here…
For while the trigger is fairly standard – you pull it back, the gun goes bang – the cocking method is anything but!
As you can see from the photograph above, the Rex is cocked by pulling down and forward on what appears to be the drilled, anodized trigger guard.
Once this cocking arm is fully forward, a pellet is loaded into the gaping breech (see the Shootability section below). So you swing the cocking arm back up into place – at least until you discover that you can’t! For there’s a small lever that needs to be pulled back (with the thumb in our case) before the cocking lever can be brought into its rest position and the gun shot. It’s a type of secondary safety, in addition to a conventional trigger block manual safety on the right side of the action directly above the trigger.
If this sounds inconvenient, it actually isn’t – after the first couple of shots, that is. With a little practice, the operation becomes remarkably fluid and easy. And the cocking effort is very low indeed.
At an average pull weight of 4 Lb 13 Oz, the single stage Rex trigger is not exactly light. But it is crisp and predictable, although somewhat long travel. This pull weight is appropriate for its intended use as a a hunting airgun.
COMPARISON TO MAKERS CLAIMS
The Evanix Rex air rifle tested by HAM matched or bettered the manufacturer’s claims.
The claimed muzzle velocity with lead pellets is 1,080 FPS. HAM recorded 1,097 FPS with 11.9 Grain RWS Hobby pellets. This rose to 1,172 FPS with lightweight alloy pellets.
Muzzle energy is claimed at 44 Ft/Lbs for the .22 caliber version of the Evanix Rex air rifle. The gun tested by HAM averaged 43.18 Ft/Lbs over 10 shots with heavy, 21.14 Grain H&N Baracuda Match pellets. Yes, this is slightly below the claim, but it’s clear that the Rex would easily achieve the 44 Ft/Lb claim with even heavier pellets than the HAM standard test ammo.
The trigger pull weight specification for the Evanix Rex air rifle is 5.5 Lbs. In HAM testing, we recorded an average of 4 Lb 13 Oz, clearly better than the claim.
The manufacturer claims 20 shots per fill for the Rex air rifle in .22 caliber. The HAM team feels that this is a very realistic estimate, as our “shoot down” graph below shows.
The Evanix Rex Air Rifle Test Review .22 Cal tested by HAM displayed a curious blend of consistency and inconsistency.
In HAM’s test target shooting, the Rex gave a relatively high Standard Deviation (measure of shot-to-shot variation in FPS). But it was quite consistent, averaging 15.8 FPS with remarkably little difference between the different pellets tested. So, the rate of fall of muzzle velocity with shot count was really very consistent, even though it was fairly large in absolute terms.
The trigger pull weight was also very consistent, varying only a few ounces either side of the 4 Lb 13 Oz average recorded on test.
So, all looked good for consistency until we came to the “shoot down test”. Here we simply filled the Rex to it’s maximum fill pressure of 220 Bar and then measured the muzzle velocity produced with 14.35 Grain JSB Jumbo Exact Express pellets until the pressure had fallen to 100 Bar (measured using the gun’s own pressure gauge).
Normally this test provides a reasonably consistent line when the FPS is plotted for each shot on a graph. But with Evanix Rex air rifle tested by HAM, this was definitely NOT the case! In the graph below, you can see the individual shots recorded as blue dots. We then added a “trend line” in red to make sense of what we were seeing. This trend line is calculated by the software and it gives a sort of “average” through the spread of individual muzzle velocities.
As you can clearly see, the muzzle velocity for the Evanix Rex air rifle tested by HAM was decidedly NOT consistent over a large number of shots! This inconsistency would manifest itself as vertical “stringing” on a target – which is, in fact, what we do see in many of the HAM test targets below.
We don’t have a good explanation for this behavior. But, given the primary purpose of the Rex as a hunting air rifle, it may not matter too much. This is because most airgun hunters take relatively few shots during the course of a hunt – maybe 10, or less. Most owners of the Rex will want maximum power for those few shots and will recharge the tank frequently. So, they are unlikely to experience this inconsistency in the field.
The HAM team was pleasantly surprised by the large number of shots that the Rex was able to achieve from one fill, even if the muzzle velocity was falling. We expected nowhere as many shots from such a small HPA tank!
The Evanix Rex air rifle is fitted with a shrouded barrel. But don’t be deceived by appearances, this gun is LOUD!
In fact, it’s loud enough that the HAM team used ear defenders when shooting it at our indoor ranges. That’s very unusual. This one’s not backyard-friendly, folks…
Of course, the high noise level is not completely unexpected. The Rex is a powerful gun with a short barrel and there’s plenty of muzzle blast to be had. And the alloy pellets exceeded the sound barrier, adding their own sonic boom to the mix.
Of course, this noise level may not trouble the airgun hunter who’s likely to make few shots, but make them count.
SIGHTS AND SCOPE
The Evanix Rex air rifle is supplied without a bundled scope – as you would expect.
Scope mounting is achieved by means of the integral Picatinny/Weaver scope rail. This 7.25-inch long rail provides plenty of real estate to mount a scope. We installed a Leapers 3-9x40AO scope on Leapers high rings. This combination balanced well and positioned the scope ideally for a good cheek weld against the HPA tank.
The scope rail itself is a very substantial part. It provides rock solid mounting for the scope, yet combines this with outstanding access for loading pellets into the breech directly below.
The Evanix Rex air rifle is outstandlingly small and light for the power it offers. Without a scope, it weighs in at just 5 Lbs 8 Oz.
Don’t get us wrong, that doesn’t mean that the gun feels insubstantial. In fact, the Rex feels very solid and well made to an elegant, simple design.
Pellets are loaded into the breech – actually into an extension of the barrel – underneath the scope rail. The receiver has a large cutout to give even more space for right-handed loading. Southpaws have less room for loading, but it’s still possible. The shape of the loading cutout and location of the manual safety are the only aspects of the Rex that are other than completely ambidextrous.
Note that the HAM team found it preferable to push the pellet actually into the rear of the barrel and not just lay it on the loading tray. That gave better accuracy and surer pellet feed in our testing.
As you would anticipate, the Evanix Rex air rifle scores a very low – that means good – RateAGun score of 4.5, indicating an air rifle that’s easy to shoot.
The straight line design of the Rex means that the HPA tank does double duty as the buttstock. HAM testers were somewhat dubious that this would give a good cheek weld, but that initial feeling was changed very quickly with use. In fact the thin HPA tank provides a very comfortable, predictable cheek weld that aided the inherent “pointability” of this air rifle. The only downside is that there is, obviously, no adjustable cheek piece with this type of design.
The pull length (distance from trigger blade to buttplate is actually quite long at 15.5 inches. All the HAM testers found this perfectly satisfactory in use, although we tend to be of the tall, thin, somewhat long-armed type. Some of us found that the buttstock was somewhat less than 100% comfortable for extended shooting sessions, but hunters would not be likely to experience this in practise.
APPEARANCE AND FINISH
As with most airguns from this manufacturer, the appearance of the Evanix Rex air rifle is polarizing. You’ll either love it or hate it.
Let’s be clear, the HAM team loves it!
There’s a distinct “black rifle” look to the Rex, combined with a real minimalist design. Finish is mainly black anodizing to the metal parts. There’s also a surprisingly comfortable textured finish to the HPA tank, which doubles as a buttstock in the Rex design.
Overall, finish is that of a good working gun. It’s entirely suitable for purpose, but you’ll look in vain for deep gloss black bluing and a perfect mirror finish to metal surfaces. That’s not what the Evanix Rex air rifle is about…
BUYING AND OWNING
As a new model – in fact a complete new range – of airguns, the Evanix Rex air rifle is not widely available. But it is easily available from those well-known online airgun dealers Pyramyd Air and Airgun Depot. That means almost all airgun enthusiasts will have no trouble finding a place to buy.
The HPA tank is interchangeable, although supplies of this accessory are not yet available at retail in the US. Tanks simply screw into the rear of the receiver.
Filling the Rex’s HPA tank requires pulling off the plastic butt plate. This gives access to the port for the dedicated fill probe that is supplied with the gun.
The pressure gauge of the Evanix Rex air rifle is located in the end of the tank – in other words against your shoulder in the firing position.
A full fill requires 200 Bar of pressure – that’s approximately 3,190 PSI. And the gauge is still readable with the butt plate attached, as you can see below.
The Evanix Rex air rifle is covered by a one year warranty that’s provided by Air Venturi in the USA.
The instruction manual for the Rex is simple and clearly illustrated. This is a simple air rifle and so there’s no need for great complexity. But it’s in English only and is, unfortunately, largely occupied with warning messages.