paintball hopper, paintball loader

A paintball hopper (this may also be referred to as a loader) is a device that attaches to your paintball gun. This will store your paint before loading the paint into the firing chamber. If you’re looking to purchase your own hopper here’s a few things to consider.

Feed Rate

This is the speed which the hopper can feed the balls into the firing chamber and is measured in balls per second (bps). The feed rate in loaders can vary dependant on the loading mechanism, this can be anything from 4bps to 40bps.

Mechanisms – The Difference

There are two types of loading mechanism, gravity fed and electronic.

Gravity Fed

gravity fed loader

Gravity fed hoppers rely solely on gravity to draw the ball into the firing chamber resulting in a low feed rate. A low feed rate often causes paint to jam inside the hopper, although this is easily resolved (shake the hopper to dislodge the paint) it takes time, time which could have been spent firing or aiming.

These loaders are designed to be used on mechanical markers and should not be used with an electronic marker (for information on the difference between electronic and mechanical markers check out our "Electronic vs Mechanical Markers" blog post).

Electronic markers have a higher firing rate which typically will exceed the feed rate of a gravity fed hopper. When the firing rate exceeds feed rate this can cause paint to chop.

These hoppers are cheap, lightweight and quiet – perfect for beginners.

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Electronic hoppers use battery powered motors which spin to feed paintballs into the chamber. Due to relying on mechanical force as opposed to gravity the paint is fed into the marker at a much quicker rate resulting in faster firing. These hoppers can be used on mechanical and electronical markers.

As these loaders have a motor they can be a little on the noisy side dependant on whether you purchase a low, mid or high end hopper. The battery can also drain quickly if the hopper doesn’t have sensor.

These hoppers are a little more expensive but offer quicker feed rates.

Low End 

Low end electronic hoppers often have no sensor so the motor will move continuously, this can be fairly noisy. Due to the lack of sensors this will effect battery life meaning you’ll have to frequently repurchase batteries. Cheaper loaders can also be harder to strip if anything goes wrong.

High End

High end electronic loaders use sensors so the motor will only move when necessary which will assist with noise and battery life. These loaders are also easier to disassemble.

It is important to mention that whilst an electronic loaders main selling point is feed rate, with the rate of fire caps in today's games (generally 10bps) this means a cheaper electronic loaders will still feed fast enough.

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For electronic loaders check out the batteries we stock at


speedfeedA speedfeed is an accessory that fits in your hopper lid allowing you to re fill your loader quicker. They offer fast fills and no spills, often halving your loading time. Some speedfeeds also come with an added rain lid.

Check out our speedfeed range at -

If you have any questions don't hesitate to contact us at or call us on 01642 605000.