Gamo Whisper G2 Air Rifle
Test Review .177 Cal.
October 2 2014
Submitted by Gamo USA.
Accurate. Not pellet picky.
Nice crisp trigger.
Easy to Cock.
Poor bundled scope.
Poor bundled scope. (Oops, did we mention that already?)
Not as quiet as you'd think.
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Gamo Whisper G2 Air Rifle
VALUE FOR MONEY
There’s plenty of competition in air rifles selling at $200. All the usual suspects, Crosman (Benjamin), Umarex and Hatsan have multiple competitors, there are also other Gamo models at around the same price, and there’s guns from Beeman, Daisy (Winchester) and more. This is an ultra-competitive price point for air rifles!
About half of these have gas ram power plants, while the remainder – like the Whisper G2 – use the traditional spring/piston system.
So the Whisper G2 has plenty of competition. But Gamo clearly knows what they are doing and offers a lot of value for their customers, backed by many performance claims and marketing slogans.
While knowledgeable airgunners will value the Gamo Whisper G2 air rifle for its accuracy and consistent performance, the overwhelming majority of buyers for this air rifle are not airgun experts and will buy it based on the marketing claims. Both groups will probably feel that they made a good decision!
SPEED AND ACCURACY
Right up-front we have to say that the Gamo Whisper G2 air rifle tested by HAM did not achieve Gamo’s muzzle velocity claim of 1275 FPS with alloy pellets.
Hard Air Magazine does not consider extremely high muzzle velocities ALONE to be very significant. (What’s the use of a Zillion FPS muzzle velocity if you can’t hit the target?) However Gamo’s marketing stresses the bragging rights of their guns’ muzzle velocity and so it’s disappointing to see the Whisper G2 fall short in this measurement.
But wait, there’s more, and it’s good!
HAM recorded a maximum of 1162 FPS with 5.56 grain H&N Field Target Trophy Green pellets, giving 16.68 Ft/Lbs of muzzle energy. Overall, muzzle velocity is very similar to the first generation Gamo Whisper air rifle previously tested by HAM, indicating that the same basic spring/piston power plant could be used in both models.
|Pellet||Average Muzzle Velocity||Average Muzzle Energy||Accuracy|
|Gamo Raptor Platinum 4.7 Grain||1149.43 FPS||13.78 Ft/Lbs||Excellent.|
|H&N Field Target Trophy Green 5.56 Grain||1162.59 FPS||16.68 Ft/Lbs||Good.|
|RWS Hobby 7.0 Grain||997.36 FPS||14.84 Ft/Lbs||OK.|
|Crosman Premier HP 7.9 Grain||944.91 FPS||15.65 Ft/Lbs||Good.|
|JSB Exact Diabalo 8.44 Grain||854.32 FPS||13.67Ft/Lbs||Good.|
|H&N Field Target Trophy 8.64 Grain||893.9 FPS||15.32Ft/Lbs||Excellent.|
|H&N Baracuda Match 10.65 Grain||793.75 FPS||14.89 Ft/Lbs||Best Tested.|
Accuracy was very good or excellent with 6 out of the 7 standard HAM test pellets. The Gamo Whisper G2 air rifle tested by HAM performed well with all pellets except the RWS Hobbys. This gun is not pellet picky.
So the Gamo Whisper G2 air rifle does provide good accuracy with fairly high muzzle velocity alloy pellets and that IS important for the target market Gamo aims their products at.
Paradoxically, best accuracy with this Whisper G2 was achieved in this HAM test review with heavy, slow H&N Baracuda Match pellets. But it was a close run thing…
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TRIGGER AND COCKING EFFORT
The Gamo Whisper G2 air rifle is fitted with Gamo’s SAT – Smooth Action Trigger. The gun tested by HAM certainly had a very crisp and predictable trigger. HAM tester Paul Manktelow described the trigger as being “Real nice. Kind of like an old-fashioned light switch, it just snaps on”.
HAM measured the trigger pull weight as averaging 3 lbs 4oz. It was very consistent also.
The trigger blade is plastic, but is well shaped and feels good to the finger. As always, we like the manual safety which is conveniently placed inside the trigger guard, just in front of the trigger. It’s convenient and easy to engage.
Cocking the Whisper G2 is quite easy, the silencer providing a good hand grip. Cocking effort measured 35 lbs, but it felt less to the HAM team. The action is smooth, although a little gritty on the return stroke of the gun tested by HAM. This grittiness could disappear with use.
Overall, the HAM testers feel the trigger and cocking performance is good for a spring/piston air rifle of this power and price.
COMPARISON TO MAKERS CLAIMS
Gamo makes many claims for the Whisper G2, some of them big!
Foremost is the muzzle velocity, where Gamo claims 1,275 fps with PBA Platinum pellets. In HAM testing with these Gamo Platinum pellets, the average muzzle velocity achieved was 1,149 fps. That’s nearly 10% slow compared to the manufacturer’s claim. HAM tests did average 1,162 fps with H&N Field Target Trophy Green pellets, however, getting 13 fps closer to Gamo’s claim.
Cocking effort is claimed to be 32 lbs for the Gamo Whisper G2 air rifle. In HAM testing, we recorded 35 lbs although, as recorded above, the testers though it felt much lighter than that.
The claim for the SAT trigger is that it gives a clean, crisp feel together with a smooth pull. HAM agrees. For a stock factory trigger on a $200 air rifle, the trigger is very good.
Trigger pull weight is claimed as 3.74 lbs (3 lbs 12 oz approximately). The Gamo Whisper G2 tested by HAM came in well under this by averaging 3 lbs 4oz.
And then there’s the Turbo Stabilizing System. Gamo claims that this controls the agressiveness of the firing cycle by bringing the spring to a controlled stop within the chamber. The benefits are stated to be more velocity, less vibration and reduced recoil. HAM doesn’t have a way to measure these claims, but it’s clear that the Whisper G2 air rifle is accurate and easy to shoot.
Gamo also claims that the SWA (Shock Wave Absorber) recoil pad gives up to 74% recoil absorption. Again, HAM doesn’t have a way to test this, although subjectively recoil felt to be well controlled. (We did notice a tendency for the three soft rubber inserts within the buttpad to move out of their place during use, however).
And, of course, being a Whisper model, Gamo claims that the G2 is “The Quiet Gun”. HAM’s subjective assessment is that the G2 is of about average noise level for an air rifle of this power.
Six of the seven HAM standard test pellets shot accurately in the tested Whisper G2. That indicates a consistency in shooting that is of considerable value to the average shooter as he or she doesn’t need to be too concerned about pellet choice.
Standard Deviation, the measure of muzzle velocity consistency was below 6 fps for five of the seven pellets tested. The minimun was just 3 fps for the H&N Baracuda Match heavies. Again this is good performance for a spring/piston air rifle, particularly one that is new and has not had many hundreds of shots to settle down.
Muzzle energy averaged 15 ft/lbs with a high of 16.68 ft/lbs and a low of 13.67 ft/lbs. This is a fairly typical performance, although it’s noticeable that there’s no tendency for any particular range of pellet weights to give the highest value.
Trigger pull weight was very consistent, too. The recorded pull weights varied only 2oz above and 2 oz below the average. That’s excellent consistency.
As we always state, it’s very difficult to give an accurate impression of noise without very sophisticated measuring technology. But the HAM testers’ opinion is that the Whisper G2 gives about the average noise level that you would expect from a spring/piston air rifle of this muzzle velocity. It’s nothing like as quiet as a Benjamin Marauder, which is our “Gold Standard” for quietness.
And, as for any air rifle, the Whisper G2 can be very loud firing lightweight alloy pellets at muzzle velocities above about 1100 FPS due to the sonic boom these pellets produce in flight. This is not an issue with the gun, it’s purely a function of physics with fast-traveling pellets.
The shooter is aware of a fair degree of spring twang when firing the gun, but this is not heard by bystanders at any significant distance from the Whisper G2.
SIGHTS AND SCOPE
The fiber optic open sights are standard Gamo-issue items. They’re OK, but very few people choose to shoot an air rifle without a scope.
Unfortunately the 4 x 32 scope bundled with the Gamo Whisper G2 air rifle does not live up to the quality of the gun itself. It’s one grade better than some of the 4 x 32 scopes bundled with cheaper air rifles, and at least its focus is not preset for 100 yards – as some are – which is an improvement.
Image quality is adequate for use at close ranges – less than about 20 yards. But there’s no AO (Adjustable Objective) capability to focus the scope for longer ranges, when the image becomes somewhat fuzzy, with the corresponding bad effect on accurate shooting.
The simple Duplex reticle has no mil dots. Experience proves that a mil dot reticle is essential for practical airgun shooting in the field.
This low 4-power magnification gives a fairly wide field of view but means that the front fiber optic sight is always visible when shooting with the scope. This is another ding against the bundled scope – higher magnifications remove this issue.
To match the quality of the Whisper G2, HAM recommends that you buy a better scope. This is disappointing, but most other manufacturers also bundle sub-standard scopes with their air rifles. Gamo is far from the only culprit here. In terms of low(ish) cost air rifles, only the Stoeger X20 and ATAC Suppressor models have bundled scopes of adequate quality – at least in HAM’s opinion.
The Whisper G2 is a easy to shoot for a spring/piston air rifle of this power. As HAM tester Paul Manktelow noted, “it’s real easy to handle all day because of it’s light weight”. The trigger is sharp. Cocking effort is not bad and this helps, too.
Shootability is aided by the thumbhole stock design. The adjustable cheekpiece also helps by allowing the user to find the best cheek weld for his/her physique. As is well known, achieving a good cheek weld is a major contributor to accurate shooting and the G2 scores here.
The trigger, light weight and stock design all contribute to a RateAGun score of 8.9, which is better (lower) than that of many air rifles of this type and power.
One notable aid to shootability of the Gamo Whisper G2 air rifle was the ease and consistency with which pellets could be placed into the breech end of the barrel. The design and machining of this area seemed excellent. Some break barrel air rifles will leave a hole in your thumb from forcing pellets into the barrel repeatedly. The Whisper G2 is not one of them. And that’s a good thing!
With a better scope, shootability would be even better…
APPEARANCE AND FINISH
The majority of the external surface of the Whisper G2 – actually almost everything except for the compression tube – is black plastic and rubber. The quality of the plastic molding is generally high, although there are pronounced seams visible on the stock, barrel and silencer.
The rubber inserts on the forend, pistol grip and stock feel good and are well executed.
Appearance is polarizing. As with most air rifles having an overwhelming preponderance of black plastic, you’ll either love it or hate it. The HAM team prefers wood, but maybe that’s a generational thing!
BUYING AND OWNING
The Gamo Whisper G2 is very easy to buy. Gamo air rifles are available almost everywhere airguns are sold! The only issue is – that with such a wide product range – not every “bricks and mortar” retailer can have every model available.
The 12 month warranty is average for an air rifle but Gamo is one of those (fortunately few) companies that requires the user not only to pay for shipping back to Gamo for any warranty repair work, but also requires a prepayment of $10.00 as part payment for the return of the gun after warranty repairs. And repair time is quoted as 6 weeks.
Spare parts for Gamo air rifles are not generally available from Gamo, except as part of a repair undertaken by the company. This being in strong contrast to the approach taken by Crosman and Umarex – for example – which make spares for many models readily available.
Liability issues are probably behind Gamo’s approach to the non-provision of spare parts, but this does not help the knowledgeable owner who aims to keep his (or her) gun in use over many years.
Of course, if the gun works well and no warranty claims or spare parts are required, this may not matter to the purchaser!
A possible future issue in long term use is that the front stock screws are covered by a pair of rubber side grips. These grips don’t appear to be easily removed without causing damage that might prevent them from being replaced correctly.
So why’s this an issue?
Well, the front stock screws in most spring/piston air rifles work loose over time, causing inaccuracy. This is easily corrected by the user simply re-tightening these screws. But Gamo’s design seems to imply that either the Whisper G2’s stock screws will never come loose, or – if they do – that they don’t want you to tighten them. Hmmm….
HAM reader Eric Baker supplied the following information. “My G2 stock came a bit loose, and people at Gamo said you can remove the rubber checkering and tighten the stock screws that way. Apparently you slide a thin flathead screwdriver or butter knife under the front end of the checkering and pull it off…” Eric, Thanks for the additional input!
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Gamo Whisper G2 .177 Caliber Air Rifle
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Gamo Whisper G2 Air Rifle
This entire article including scoring, test targets etc is Copyright Hard Air Magazine and may NOT in part or in whole be reproduced in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from the publisher.