Umarex Synergis Air Rifle Test Review .177 Caliber
Sept 30, 2019
The scope and rings
Requires a big, strong owner
Occasional fliers and failures to load
VALUE FOR MONEY
The Umarex Synergis sells for a Street Price of $160 – well, $159.95 to be precise. The HAM Team were expecting it to be much higher, given the specifications. Straight out of the box, we immediately felt this would be stellar value for money in an air rifle.
However, most users who want to enjoy the accuracy of this air rifle will want to buy and fit a superior scope. In our opinion, the Synergis would be better priced at – say – $200 with a decent, AO, Mil-dot equipped, “airgun rated” scope.
As it is, the owner needs to budget for a replacement scope and rings to realize the potential of the Umarex Synergis. This is – of course – a common issue with bundled scopes, except that this one was clearly at the low end of the performance spectrum 🙁
BUY FROM PYRAMYD AIR
Umarex Synergis .177 cal, Multi-shot Gas Piston Rifle Combo 0.177
BUY FROM AIRGUN DEPOT
Umarex Synergis Air Rifle
|HAM Test Rating||73%|
|Value For Money||Good, in spite of the need to buy a replacement scope.|
|Best For||Plinking, hunting small game.|
|Best Pellet Tested||H&N Baraduda Match 10.65 Grain 18.13 Grain|
|Street Price at Time of Test||$159.99|
SPEED AND ACCURACY
The Umarex Synergis tested by HAM achieved a highest muzzle velocity of 1,231 FPS when shooting the ultra-light Gamo Platinum 4.7 Grain pellets. The maximum muzzle velocity using lead was achieved by the 7.0 Grain RWS Hobbys at 968 FPS.
|Pellet||Average Muzzle Velocity||Average Muzzle Energy||Accuracy|
|Gamo Raptor Platinum 4.7 Grain||1231.11 FPS||15.82 Ft/Lbs||Excellent.|
|H&N Field Target Trophy Green 5.56 Grain||1163.08 FPS||16.71 Ft/Lbs||Excellent.|
|RWS Hobby 7.0 Grain||986.68 FPS||15.14 Ft/Lbs||Poor.|
|Crosman Premier HP 7.9 Grain||963.70 FPS||16.30 Ft/Lbs||Very Good.|
|JSB Exact Diabolo 8.44 Grain||890.69 FPS||14.87 Ft/Lbs||Very Good.|
|H&N Field Target Trophy 8.64 Grain||928.83 FPS||16.56 Ft/Lbs||Excellent.|
|H&N Baracuda Match 10.65 Grain||819.43 FPS||15.88 Ft/Lbs||Excellent. Best Tested.|
As is apparent from the test targets, the Umarex Synergis tested by HAM gave good accuracy with most of the standard HAM test pellets.
Impressively, this is one of the most accurate air rifles we have ever shot with alloy pellets! The groups with the alloys were nearly as good as with the heavy H&N Baracuda Match pellets that so often produce top accuracy – as they did here.
However, the test gun did have a tendency to throw an occasional flier. It didn’t do it all the time and the flier wasn’t consistently in the same place, although it did tend to be on the first shot of a new magazine.
What makes the accuracy even more impressive is that these targets were shot using a magnification of only 3X using the bundled scope. Great shooting Eric! (Check out the Sights and Scope section below for full details).
The HAM Team clearly expects that accuracy would have been even better with a better quality scope. The Umarex Synergis tested by HAM definitely delivered on the accuracy promise claimed for underlever air rifles.
TRIGGER AND COCKING EFFORT
The trigger pull weight of the Umarex Synergis tested by HAM averaged 3 Lbs 7.8 Ozs. HAM Tester Eric Brewer noted that “the trigger breaks at a consistent area but seems to drag before reaching the firing stage.” It certainly didn’t prevent him from shooting some very good groups!
The manufacturer claims that the Synergis has a two stage trigger. The HAM Team is not disputing this. However, it certainly felt much like a single stage unit to us…
Many experienced shooters will be delighted that the Umarex Synergis is equipped with a manual safety. This is of the push-across type. While possibly too small for use by gloved hands in cold weather, it worked positively and was easy to use in our test environment.
Like most such “push across” safeties, this one needs to be pushed from the right side to be set for firing. This is easier for a right-hander than if left-handed operation is used. However once this type of safety mechanism is chosen, it’s bound to be easier one way than the other…
As gas ram-powered air rifle, the Umarex Synergis requires a continuous, steady pull in the cocking arm. The gun tested by HAM required an effort of 31 Lbs. This requires a fairly strong person to operate, particularly if taking advantage of the 12-shot magazine capacity for an extended shooting session.
Before pulling down the underlever, the end of the cocking handle must be pulled back. This disengages the cocking arm from the barrel shroud, as can be seen in the photograph below. It’s re-engaged before pulling the trigger.
The Synergis operation manual warns users not to place their fingers between the cocking mechanism and the stock. Page 8, illustration 3 in the English language section, shows this. HAM Tester Eric Brewer endorsed this ” Don’t trap your fingers in the cocking assembly. Be careful!”, he wrote.
COMPARISON TO MAKERS CLAIMS
The manufacturer claims a maximum Muzzle Velocity of 1200 FPS with alloy pellets and 1000 FPS with lead.
The Umarex Synergis tested by HAM slightly exceeded the alloy speed with a highest average of 1231 FPS. That’s 2.5% above the claim. The fastest lead pellets averaged 986 FPS (1.3% slow).
Overall, the HAM Team is willing to say that the Synergis matches it’s manufacturer’s Muzzle Velocity claims.
The Umerex Synergis tested by HAM demonstrated outstanding consistency in several respects.
Firstly, it was consistently accurate with a wide variety of pellets. This is important as it saves the new owner from a long, time-consuming hunt to find a new “best pellet” for his or her air rifle.
Secondly, it gave an average Standard Deviation (variation in shot-to-shot consistency in a string) of just 6.22 FPS across all the standard HAM test pellets. That’s extremely low for a gas piston air rifle and well up into regulated PCP territory!
Thirdly, the trigger pull weight varied by just 7 Ounces around it’s 3 Lb 7.8 Oz average. Again this is a very good result that’s above average for airguns in this class.
The Umarex Synergis is the only spring/piston or gas ram air rifle known to the HAM Team that’s fitted with a shrouded barrel. This, of course, is common on PCPs but not for manually-cocked air rifles.
In practice, the shroud worked pretty well. It certainly made the report of the Synergis tested by HAM “backyard friendly”. It was not as quiet as our “gold standard” for quietness, the Benjamin Marauder but it was still pretty good.
At least it was quiet providing that alloy pellets were not used! The Synergis gave muzzle velocities in the 1200 FPS range with lead-free pellets. That’s above the Speed of Sound and no silencer or shroud on earth is going to quieten down the sonic boom made by the pellet itself after it leaves the barrel.
To be clear, this is not a slam on the Synergis, it’s true for any .177 caliber air rifles shooting at greater than about 1100 FPS – however quiet the product name claims it is…
So if you use light, lead-free pellets, prepare for the Umarex Synergis to sound like a 22 Long Rifle firearm! The answer is simple, of course. Use heavier lead pellets to keep the neighbors happy.
SIGHTS AND SCOPE
Unfortunately the scope supplied with the Umarex Synergis is very disappointing.
As a 3-9×40 scope, the HAM Team’s hopes were high that this would be a better optic than the standard-issue 4×32 scope that’s bundled with so many low-end air rifles. Sadly this did not turn out to be the case 🙁
As there’s no AO (Adjustable Objective) mechanism fitted to this scope, sharp focus is dependent on the factory settings. The problem is that the scope would only deliver tolerable – at best – sharpness at 10 and 25 Yards when set to the minimum 3 X magnification. Increasing the magnification only gave a worse image.
This means that the test targets shot by HAM Tester Eric Brewer were shot at 3X magnification instead of the 9X that would normally be used.
So, the scope does not focus close enough for normal airgun use. Furthermore it has a simple Duplex reticle with no Mil dots. This makes it unsuitable for holdover/holdunder use with airguns. But wait, there’s more…
The reticle of the scope bundled with the Umarex Synergis tested by HAM broke during testing! Undoubtedly, this was the result of the stout recoil developed by the air rifle. This is what happened…
The scope rings are of the Picatinny style. This is good because the Picatinny mounting system has no problems handling the strong recoil of the Synergis. Also the Picatinny rail itself is securely welded to the compression tube.
However, the rings are very flimsy, with only one screw each side of the mounting rings. And then these rings are waaaay too high. In fact they’re “see through” rings of the type that some folk fondly hope will allow them to look through to see open sights even when the scope is fitted.
But there are no open sights on the Umarex Synergis! Duuhhhhhhhhh…….
But there is one piece of good news about this scope. The sample tested by HAM was of the “one time AO” variety. If the outer ring of the scope bell (front) was slightly unscrewed, it’s possible to VERY CAREFULLY rotate the inner ring around the objective lens.
Rotating this inner ring alters the parallax adjustment of the scope and allows it to be re-focussed to a closer distance. Once a better focus has been achieved, the outer ring is then rotated to lock the new setting in position. This could be good if the reticle holds out.
So why didn’t we use this hack to improve the performance of the scope in HAM testing?
Firstly because we used the Umarex Synergis bundle as instructed. There was not mention of this “one time AO” hack. So the average user would not know it were possible.
Secondly because we don’t know if all the scopes supplied with the Synergis have this “one time AO” capability. (Maybe we just got lucky).
At any event, the best thing to do with this scope and rings is to replace them with something better. Putting a decent scope with Mil-dot reticle, “airgun rated” recoil capability and strong rings will allow the real accuracy of the Synergis to be fully exploited.
This Leapers scope is a prime example of what we mean. Yes, it’s going to cost more money but you will be able to actually see the target, use a any magnification and stand a much greater chance of hitting what you’re aiming at!
The Umarex Synergis is good enough that the HAM Team believes this would be a worthwhile investment.
Make no mistake! At 45.75 Inches overall length, the Umarex Synergis is a big air rifle.
The weight of 9 Lb 6 Oz (with bundled scope) is right up there, too. So this is an air rifle for a large, strong person. It’s definitely NOT a kid’s gun or one for a small, short person. You need size and physical strength to manage the Synergis.
HAM Tester Eric Brewer commented in his test notes, “Made for an adult. Long stock. Good for a larger person (like me). You need to have big hands to unlock the cocking lever.”
There’s no doubt that the 12-shot magazine provides one of the neatest multi-shot gas ram implementations available today. It sits low in the action and does not obscure the scope – as is the case with several other models. Very good!
The magazine loading system also eliminates the need to insert the shooter’s fingers inside the action to load pellets – as is the case with single-shot underlever air rifles.
Even though such models have sophisticated anti-beartrap mechanisms to prevent the potential danger of trapped (chopped?) fingers, HAM Publisher Stephen Archer prefers the safety of magazine loading. Eric Brewer is a Diana 54 shooter and so is used to loading pellets into a sliding breech!
APPEARANCE AND FINISH
The HAM Team feels that the Umarex Synergis is a good-looking air rifle. It’s long, sleek and stylish, in the popular “all black” color scheme.
The stock is nicely-shaped. However it does have some pronounced mold lines that detract from the appearance.
Unfortunately the sample tested by HAM had some “drying marks” in the black finish of the compression chamber (see photograph below). This doesn’t appear to effect the functionality – there’s no sign of rust – but it disappoints the eye.
As with the scope, we would have been happy to pay a few bucks more for a finish that better matched the shooting capabilities of the Synergis we tested.
There’s a rubber buttpad at the rear of the stock. Unfortunately this has a (fairly) smooth surface. It would benefit from some ribbing to improve shoulder contact in wet weather, or when used with slippery nylon clothing.
BUYING AND OWNING
The Umarex Synergis is easy to find online from the normal, reputable sources, including Pyramyd Air and Airgun Depot. It may also become available in big box shooting goods stores as both Umarex USA’s distribution muscle and the price point make that an attractive proposition.
There’s a 3-year warranty offered through Umarex in Fort Smith, AR and further security is offered through the inclusion of 2 magazines with the gun. That’s good!
The Synergis magazines themselves are conceptually very similar to those used in the Umarex Gauntlet and some other PCP air rifles. They have a clear cover plate which is rotated to load pellets. An internal spring drives round the pellet holding rotor inside the magazine and presents them for loading into the breech as the cocking lever is closed.
However, it’s important to know that – unlike the Gauntlet magazine – that for the Synergis does not block the action closing after the 12 shots have been fired. In other words, it’s possible to dry fire the air rifle unintentionally.
True, there are reference marks – the red and white dots – that indicate when the magazine is empty. However, the user needs to pay attention when shooting and watch for the magazine to run dry.
Another issue that can arise is that – as with many PCPs – if the cocking lever is operated twice in succession without firing a shot, the Synergis will double load pellets into the barrel.
As both dry firing and double-loading are undesirable situations, HAM recommends that the shooter monitor his or her operation closely to avoid such user errors.
Finally, the Umarex Synergis tested by HAM occasionally failed to load a pellet when the gun was cocked. This happened a couple of times during the shooting tests, but we could not replicate the issue in structured testing on the bench.
BUY FROM PYRAMYD AIR
Umarex Synergis .177 cal, Multi-shot Gas Piston Rifle Combo 0.177
BUY FROM AIRGUN DEPOT
Umarex Synergis 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.