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Review

KSC Glock 19 VS WA Infinity SV3.9
  • Manufacturer 
     KSC / WA
  • Model 
     Glock 19 / Infinity SV3.9
  • Capacity 
     21 / 24
  • Weight 
     740 / 890
  • Power 
     290 / 290
  • Power Source 
     HFC134a / HFC22
  • Blowback 
     Yes / Yes
  • Hop-up 
     Adjustable / Adjustable
  • Shooting Mode 
     Semi
  • Construction 
     ABS Plastic, Metal

Pros

KSC Glock 19
+ Very impressive range
+ Affordable price
+ Realistic lower body
+ Simple Disassembly
+ Very reliable use of HFC22
+ Externally adjustable hop-up


WA Infinity SV3.9
+ Superior craftsmanship
+ An abundance of metal parts
+ Stronger blowback kick
+ Reliable use of HFC22
 

Cons

KSC Glock 19
- Limited metal parts
- Primitive safety (as on all KSC Glocks)
- Flimsy manual a little on the cheap side



WA Infinity SV3.9
- Less range than the Glock 19
- Less accuracy
- Complicated disassembly
- Expensive
 

Verdict

KSC Glock 19
Huge bang for the buck - consider the price (less than US$100 for the Taiwan assembled version) and this is a hands-down winner. Many more expensive pistols cannot match what the Glock 19 offers in range and power. A must have.

WA Infinity SV3.9
An excellent piece that would be a star in any display cabinet (a little too beautiful to take skirmishing). Decent performance with high level of detail, but at a price. Appeals to many die-hard WA fans, and of course, where money is no object for a top-tier airsoft pistol.

 

Both the Glock 19 and the Infinity SV 3.9 are compact pistols While initially the comparison seemed to be a sensible showdown of two equals, it soon dawned on us that the two guns being reviewed were of completely different breed and heritage. Standing tall as the class leader amongst compact airsoft pistols, the Infinity SV 3.9 is a tough act to beat. With the recent release of KSC's Glock 19, we were curious to see how the new low priced contender would measure up against the more expensive and refined SV 3.9. Additionally, KSC's recent line of Glocks have clearly impressed many in the airsoft world, so we felt compelled to take a look at the latest Glock 19 as well. We had also received numerous requests for reviews on both these guns so a head-to-head comparison seemed the perfect way to "kill two birds with one stone". We took both guns out for a day on the skirmish field, followed by some good solid testing time on the RedWolf shooting grounds.

All testing was performed on a cool sunny day, with tests conducted for short range shooting at 20 degrees Celsius. Long range shooting tests were fired in the shadows at 18 degrees Celsius. An empty Coca-cola soda can was also used to test penetration abilities.

Visually comparing the two, the Infinity SV 3.9 measures at 190mm long versus the slightly shorter 186mm of the Glock 19. Height-wise (including sights), the SV measures a bit taller at 140mm while the Glock 19 measures 129mm. The SV 3.9 was slightly heavier at 890g versus the Glock 19's 740g, though you would be hard-pressed to notice the weight difference even with both pistols in your left and right hands. Both pistols are extremely balanced in terms of weight distribution. Both boast the ability to handle high powered HFC22 gas, and offer over 20 rounds of capacity. Both are of the same general shape and design, save for the internal hammer on the Glock 19. Of course, in the real steel world, we would be making a inconceivable comparison here: pitching a 9mm Glock 19 against a big bore .45 Infinity SV 3.9. However, our test of these 6mm airsoft models should be much more of an even match. On the surface, both pistols make for a very even match.

But as our testing showed, the differences pretty much stopped there.

Both pistols are very similar in length and height
The KSC hides the gas valve under the butt plate unlike WA
Both pistols are about the same width

KSC Glock 19 - The Workhorse
Released soon after the Glock 17's own debut in the real steel world, the Glock 19 made its release in 1988 as a compact alternative for Glock lovers. The Glock 19 won rave reviews at the time because it came in a size appreciated by many law enforcement officers and civilians looking for a compact carry solutions. It was almost one-half inch shorter in slide length and just over 4/10 of an inch shorter in grip height than the Glock 17, yet featured a 15-round capacity. This was a major achievement because the designs from other manufacturers offering the same magazine capacity were far larger and heavier. Without its magazine, the Glock 19 weighed a mere 21 ounces. Chambered for 9mm ammunition, the Glock 19 was a viable solution for law enforcement agencies as well.

KSC released the airsoft version of the Glock 19 in late 2001 and the airsoft world has embraced this pistol with a warm reception. One of the most distinctive improvements over its other Glock pistols is the use of high metallic content in its ABS lower body.

This results in a much more realistic feel, that is slightly cool to touch with your bare hands. The new material also gives the grip a certain hardness and resilience that makes your mind (or fingers for that matter) think "metal". This is an experience difficult to describe - Imagine yourself scraping your fingernails against both a plastic and metal surface. The hardness of the material can be felt as you run your nails across the surface - plastic tends to have a softer and duller feel, while metal feels much firmer (on plastic, you could use your nails to create a scratch or groove). It is that latter feeling that you are rewarded with as you grip the Glock 19. The entire lower body is also textured, while the pistol grip area itself is textured almost like a corkboard to provide a firm gripping surface. The finger grooves and thumb rest on the grip also make the Glock 19 extremely comfortable to hold.

One minor detail that surprised us was the way in which sunlight changed the color of the Glock 19's lower body. Having tested the gun in various lighting conditions for days, it always looked completely black (though the lower body did seem a little more "drab black"). Light from a setting sun during the photo-shoot, however, made the lower body look drab green as seen in these pictures!

Just like the other Glocks in the KSC family, the Glock 19 sports a rail frame that allows installation of various light and laser accessories. We installed the Surefire light unit onto the Glock 19, and while the unit fit snugly with a click, it did protrude out slightly on the front of the gun due to the much shorter barrel on the Glock 19 (the Surefire unit was designed for larger frame pistols like the Glock 17 and Glock 18). Most of the Glock 19 is plastic, except for the magazine, slide guide rod, and slide lock which are made of metal. Even the outer barrel and trigger is plastic. Readers should note, however, that Glocks gained their fame simply because they are made mostly of composite and offer limited metal components. The use of plastic on KSC's Glock 19 also does not compromise the rigidity and heft of the gun - it feels quite solid and sturdy in your hand.

White rimmed rear sights and a white dotted front post sight make aiming a snap, even in low light.

Loading the Glock 19 is a snap and pushing the magazine release button with your thumb allows the magazine to drop out. The magazine floor plate can be pulled down all the way and locked down for easier loading of the BBs. To release the lock, simply push the floor-plate piece "into" the magazine. One of the problems we noticed on both the Glock 19 and the SV 3.9 coming out of the box was that the floor-plate (BB feeder) would get slightly jammed and stop feeding BBs halfway through a clip.

The American FBI (pictured above) is one agency that uses the Glock 19, amongst others
Sunlight plays tricks on the lower body, making it look drab green. In most situations, the pistol is "all black" to the eye
The Glock 19 with its slide locked back

A quick squirt of silicone grease fixed the problem on both pistols. Charging gas into the Glock 19's magazine required sliding forward of the magazine butt plate - a switch allows the butt plate to slide forward and reveal the gas charging valve. While this made charging a little more cumbersome, we truly love this design since it gives the gun a much more authentic feel; even when holstered, it is impossible to discern this airsoft piece from its real-steel counterpart without the tell-tale valve. (Redwolf Airsoft does not encourage using airsoft guns to deceive others into thinking they are real-steel weapons. This would be both irresponsible and dangerous).

Glocks are widely used by law enforcement officers Unfortunately to our dismay, the safety switch design remains unchanged and resembles the one found on the KSC's other Glocks (see the Glock 18C review for a picture of the trigger safety, which is the same on the Glock 19).

Shooting the Glock 19 is a blast since the report is loud and abrupt - the Glock 19 sounds like a "pop" while the SV 3.9 makes more of a "bap" sound. The recoil is strong and firm, kicking up the barrel slightly on each shot. The slide cycle time is also very high and the next round reloads in a blur.

But all this was just what we would expect from any airsoft pistol, until we tested the Glock 19 for distance. Thanks to the simple yet effective design of KSC's new valve and leafless nozzle system, maximum and even airflow is applied to each BB. With hop-up adjusted, and testing with 0.25g BBs, our Glock 19 propelled BBs a distance of approximately to 200 feet with slight head wind. The BBs also traveled briskly and did not drift the distance. The hop-up worked very effectively to keep the BBs traveling on a level path without causing too much drift. At 50 feet, accuracy was very high, and nailing human size targets was not a problem. This type of performance surpassed that of any stock AEG, and resembled that of much more expensive upgraded guns. Especially given how short the barrel is on the Glock 19, this was truly amazing.

The chronograph did not show incredible numbers though - a humble 330fps - 340fps, or enough to penetrate one side and seriously denting the would-be exit side. We also managed to crack the bottom of the Coke can with one shot - a second shot in the same spot penetrated a hole (not bad at all for such a short barrel pistol - and we only tested this in 20 degree weather!). This impressive performance is likely due to the consistency of gas pressure and a well honed barrel, which allows BB launches to effectively use all available power. Two thumbs up and a tip-of-our-hat to KSC for an excellent design.

Emptying the gun is a blast and rapid pulls of the trigger sends the Glock spitting and kicking until the slide lock catches after the last round. We also discovered the gas reservoir to be quite large - one full charge of gas was enough to fire approximately 40 - 45 BBs (depending on ambient temperature).

Hop up is easily adjusted with an included tool - similar to turning a key, you simply insert the tool into the open chamber (with slide locked back) and twist an adjuster clockwise or anti-clockwise to fine-tune the hop-up intensity.

Disassembly is very easy and simply requires pulling down the disassembly lever (located on the lower frame forward of the slide lock. Once you pull this down with one hand, use the other to pull the slide forward and off the gun. The beauty of KSC guns is how few parts they use, and the simplicity of their design. For reassembly, simply put the slide back on, and pull it all the way back. The disassembly lever automatically pops back in position to retain the slide.

For aftermarket options, there is already a metal slide and barrel available to add more heft and realism. When upgrading the metal slide, it is recommended that you also upgrade the guide rod and spring, since the heavier slide will require a stronger recoil spring to bring it back into position when shooting upwards. Power increases can also be attained by installing a high flow valve and stronger hammer spring. A host of lighting accessories are available as well, including the aforementioned Surefire flashlight. Additional magazines are also available.

One minor note to mention is that KSC manufactures both a Japanese and Taiwan version of the same gun. These two versions are exactly identical in that both guns sport the same design, materials, performance, etc. The only difference is that the Taiwan version comes with a single sheet diagram for disassembly without a full users manual. The Japanese version comes with a much better illustrated manual on use. However if you are well versed with airsoft, then there is no reason to buy the more expensive Japanese version simply for the manual.

In Summary
The Glock 19 is a compact pistol with "upgraded AEG performance". Its performance has impressed testers and airsofters in the field alike. Reliable, businesslike, handsome (our pictures don't do it justice) and powerful, the KSC Glock 19 makes an excellent skirmish pistol as well as a range gun. Its compact size makes holstering and concealment a snap - the Glock 17 always seemed just a tad too large and the Glock 19 is perfect. With the added bonus of a more realistic lower body, this is the best Glock yet from KSC! And for almost half the price of the SV 3.9, the Glock 19 is no doubt a real bargain.

Compact magazine holds 21 rounds in stacked formation
Sliding butt plate conceals gas charge valve for added realism
Markings on lower body seen above

Western Arms Infinity SV 3.9 - Eye Candy
If the Glock 19 is a solemn workhorse, then the Infinity SV 3.9 is a flashy car by any standards. Don't get me wrong - the Glock 19 is a handsome pistol. Its merely that the SV radiates so much polished nickel plating and sports numerous curves and grooves - that it outshines the Glock 19 on visual appeal. Of course we could have made the comparison with an all-black version of the SV 3.9, but our testing dictates that we compare the best versions of any two models being compared. In this case, it is the dual-tone SV 3.9, which boasts an ABS plastic nickel plated slide, metal lower body, and plastic grip and trigger guard. Metal parts are abundant, including the lightened hammer, lower body, trigger, ambidextrous safety lever, slide lock, grip safety, magazine, magazine release button, front and rear sights, outer barrel, and slide guide rod. All metal parts are nickel plated, except for the sights and the lower body which are black gunmetal. The nickel plating on the slide is very real, and along with the variations in color caused by lubricants and fingertips - it looks convincingly made of steel -much more so than the nickel plated WA 92F. Our pictures here don't do it justice. Make no mistake - this is a beautiful gun.

Pulling back the slide reveals a huge metal outer barrel along with a thick guide rod - emphasizing the big-bore nature of its .45 ACP real steel counterpart. Everything about the SV 3.9 spells muscle and refinement. While the slide pull on the Glock 19 sounded a little plasticky, the SV's slide pull is rewarded with multiple "clacks" that sound like it is chambering a real round (though an aftermarket metal slide would add even greater effect).

The slide does feel a little light - but that is expected of all nickel plated slides. As we shared in one of our "Bite The Bullet" articles last year, nickel plating technology does not work well with high metal content plastic - and as such, few manufacturers have been able to manufacture heavy-weight nickel plated slides. However, it is still heavier than the slide on the full-auto version SVF 3.9.

All parts move with a tactile feel, including the single action hammer and the safety switches (there are levers on both sides). Like all other Infinity pistols from WA, the grip safety is an added measure that forces the user to grip the gun firmly with their palm before the trigger can be engaged. The Bomar sights are dotted white on either side, and the front sight post is also dotted white for easy and quick alignment. The front post is horizontally adjustable simply by applying firm finger pressure (the Glock 19's sights are not adjustable). The rear sight is directly connected via a hex screw to the blowback housing within the gun, and WA's extensive manual (lots of easy-to-understand pictures but no English) recommends tightening this screw (hex nut) after every 100 rounds.

Fine markings adorn the entire gun, with "Infinity" engraved on both sides of the slide. The SV logo is emblazoned on either side of the grips, as well as on the metal lower body on the right side. The airsoft markings "WA ASGK" are also engraved subtlety on the lower metal body. "INFINITY 45 ACP" is engraved on the dust cover.

The SV 3.9 offers plastic checkered grips that provide a firm grasp, albeit less comfortable than the ergonomic seating provided by the Glock 19. We also found that the plastic checkering "dented" with use - i.e. the peaks of the checkering would blunt from the firm grip of our hands. While not usually visible, these dents caused variations in the grip color under sunlight. But while the Glock 19 pulled a chameleon color change under the sun, the SV 3.9 glistened and sparkled from all its silver. (Are we being picky here?)

Pushing the magazine release button with our thumb allowed the magazine to drop out of the gun into our left hand. Loading the BB's is in much the same manner as the Glock 19, though WA provides a much more extensive loading tool with BB tube feeder to ease the process (the Glock 19 comes with a simple plastic loading tool without feeder tube). The SV 3.9 does not have a magazine floor-plate lock down feature, though the loading tool eliminated the need for one. But in the field, no one loads with a loading tool - so the Glock 19 solution seemed more pratical.

The Infinity SV 3.9 is a flashy piece of hardware
Big bore barrel intimidates any opponent - note barreling grooves
Nickel plated metal outer barrel and guide rods

Charging the HFC22 gas was also very easy since the charge valve stem, which is located on the butt of the magazine, is not concealed in any manner. Our tests indicated that one full charge of gas powered approximately 35 - 40 rounds. On average, the Glock 19 was able to fire more rounds per charge, though this is probably due to two reasons: (1) The Glock 19's gas storage chamber is larger, and (2) WA's magna blowback system uses more gas in the blowback process which provides slightly more kick and using more gas.

Our range testing demonstrated equal ability to nail human size targets at 50 feet but there was noticeably more curvature and inconsistency to the BB's flight path than the Glock 19. Where the Glock 19 pitched fast straight projectiles, the SV 3.9 seemed to propel "curve balls" and "sliders" every now and then, adding to inaccuracies. This has in fact been observed on some short barrel Infinity Hi-caps (even on the earlier model SV Compact Carry). While the blowback and power-at-the-muzzle is good, WA's hop-up system incurs sight side-spin on occasion, leading to missed shots.

"Infinity" markings adorn either side of the slide
Ambidextrous safety lever with extra large thumb tab
White dotted metal Bomar sights make aiming quick and easy

A stronger kick may also be the reason for sometimes inaccurate shots, or it could be that our test model's hop-up system had not been run in yet. Whatever the reason, the Glock won this round by a hair.

At longer ranges, the SV 3.9 proved no match for the Glock 19. The SV's shots either drifted slowly across the distance, or dropped off too quickly. Fine-tuning the hop-up was difficult since adjustments are made from the inside using an included hex-wrench (we did not have a lot of patience). Access to the adjuster requires disassembly of the gun for each minor adjustment. As such, we were not able to attain the optimal hop-up position to match the performance of the hop-up on the Glock 19. (Given a patient tuner, we have no doubt that better results can be acheived). Ultimately, our SV 3.9 was not able to achieve an effective range of 200 feet (for the purpose of this particular review, our meaning of "effective" is that you can hit a car-sized target at that distance). The chrono numbers also indicated that the SV 3.9 generated less power than the Glock 19: a humble 295fps - 300fps using HFC22 gas. We were able to penetrate one side of the Coke can though not much denting occurred on the would-be exit side. A shot to the bottom of the Coke can made a dent - but no crack. A follow-up shot did not penetrate the bottom. Remember that the Glock 19 was able to cause a cracked dent on the bottom of that same Coke can - a difference that represents a significant gap in power.

The shooting experience of the SV 3.9 is pure joy though. The blowbacks are strong and the reports are loud, though sounding a little less solid than the Glock 19 (the sound is a little shallower). Trigger pulls can be as fast as possible and trigger pressure is light and tactile. There was very little cool-down effect, though some was noticeable after we tried to squeeze off an entire magazine in one go. The cool-down effects were less noticeable on the Glock 19 (though to its credit, it has a smaller magazine!). The slide locks back after the last round like all other GBB pistols.

Disassembly is less straight-forward on the SV 3.9 than on the Glock 19. It requires positioning the slide in a position such that the disassembly pin is aligned properly for removal. With some practice, disassembly can be achieved quickly (but still not as easily as the Glock). WA is not to blame for this, however, since both guns mimic their real-steel counterparts even in the way they are disassembled.

Aftermarket options exist in the form of metal slides emblazoned with various markings and emblems (though most are rather pricey). With no rail frame, installing a flashlight required a trigger guard mounted solution (though be careful since the trigger guard is plastic and any high pressure screws will leave marks). Additional magazines are also available.

The easiest way to boost output is by installing a WA HiCap high flow valve. All you need is a hex-wrench, and you can install this yourself in minutes. Other power upgrades are not recommended in order to maintain durability - WA Hicap pistols are already fairly maximized in their efficiency and our experience has shown that expensive upgrades do not necessarily improve performance of Hicap pistols significantly.

In Summary
Overall the Infinity SV 3.9 is one refined package. It honestly is one of the most beautiful pistols on the market today (thanks to the excellent finishing on the nickel plated slide and all the brushed silver parts). The shooting experience is top notch and blowback kick is strong, However as a skirmishing partner, the SV 3.9 proved less effective than the Glock 19. The SV 3.9 is a great pistol - a more refined pistol in most respects compared to KSC's economical entry. Lots of metal parts and excellent finish, it makes a great collectors item. Many skirmish with it too and that's not a problem. It's simply slightly better than most airsoft pistols on the market in terms of power and range, while the Glock 19 sets a new standard.

Magna blowback system valve on the SV 3.9 magazine
The SV 3.9 magazine holds 24 rounds in stacked formation
The gas charge valve is not concealed

And The Winner Is...
The SV 3.9 is slightly thinner but the Glock 19 (with no protruding parts) is easier to holster As we said at the beginning of this article, we realized that we made a blunder by comparing two seemingly comparable pistols when really they are destined for different market segments - each serving a different purpose.

Western Arm's Infinity SV 3.9 is a collectors gun with top notch craftsmanship and fine details. Range and distance were less important than the shooting experience and realism of the gun and its components. Power is still sufficient to inflict damage at CQB skirmish ranges but longer range shooting should be left to a primary weapon (i.e. AEG). Frankly with such a beautiful gun, we would be hard-pressed to take it out onto a dirty field. Ours at RedWolf Airsoft sits proudly in the display case.

KSC's Glock 19 is a rugged fighter and one that can unleash enough power to sufficiently replace your primary weapon during a skirmish (at least for the 21 rounds it holds per magazine). Paring it up against the SV 3.9 brings to mind a line from the movie "US Marshals", where Tommy Lee Jones quips at Robert Downey Jr. to "Lose that nickel-plated sissy pistol and get yourself a Glock".

For our next skirmish battle, that's exactly what we will do.

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