This Umarex licensed copy of the Beretta Px4 Storm, a 1:1 BB/Pellet firing copy of the original firearm released in 2004, is a black polymer pistol with a metal slide. It features blowback action and a single or double-action trigger mechanism utilizing an exposed hammer to activate the valve. Sights are fixed and the slide stop and manual safety levers are molded in/non-functional. However, Umarex did provide a manual safety on the right side that requires a 2-step action to engage/disengage it. A long lever has a ribbed bar inset into its face that must be depressed and slid rearward slightly in order to be able to move the safety lever either upwards to disengage and reveal a red dot, or downwards to engage. Interestingly, if the hammer is back when engaging the safety lever, it will safely be dropped.
CO2 cartridges are inserted in the grip after rotating the false magazine floorplate clockwise 270 degrees and removing a small backstrap panel.
Insert with the neck pointing upwards and the base of the cartridge rests on a curved plastic wheel that can be rotated to snug the cartridge up against the piercing pin. Returning the false magazine floorplate back to its original position pierces the cartridge, taking guesswork out of the piercing operation. Pellets are held in a stick magazine that rides in the grip just in front of the CO2 cartridge. It is ejected from the grip by depressing the functional magazine release button found in the usual location on the left side just behind the trigger guard. Be certain your hand support hand is in position to catch the magazine as it is forced out by spring pressure. The magazine is a double-ended affair with rotary pellet chambers on either end each holding 8 pellets. Count your shots or you may wind up wasting CO2 before you realize you need to drop the mag and insert the other end as there is no mechanism to lock the slide back after the last pellet has been fired.
A number of replica CO2 guns on the market bleed off some CO2 in order to simulate recoil and cycle the slide. However, this Beretta model really offers some kick! Partially because of that harder recoil/blowback action, I averaged 4 ½ magazines (72 shots) per cartridge shooting only slow fire. This pistol does not disassemble or field strip like some replica CO2 guns are capable of. Indentations on either side are the location of the takedown buttons on the firearm, but there are no such buttons on the CO2 version. Still, those indentations make a nice tactile area for resting the index finger when it is outside the trigger guard. A short rail is provided on the dust cover should you want to mount a flashlight, laser or training device such as Laser Ammo or MantisX.
Firing in double-action for the first shot averaged a trigger pull of 10 pounds, 4 ounces. Of course, the hammer is cocked after that first shot and the trigger pull drops off to an average of 5 pounds, 6 ounces. The trigger pull is long and a little gritty, but I anticipate that will improve as the gun is broken in more. Trigger break is crisp and remarkably good for an air pistol in this price range. Shooting in single-action mode, I was getting good accuracy from standing shots using various lead and alloy pellets at 10 yards. The best accuracy seemed to be with the SIG Match Ballistic flat-nosed alloy pellets which weighed in at 5.2 grains. They averaged 398.8 fps at a mile above sea level out of the 4.1 inch rifled steel barrel. I am hesitant to fire steel BBs through these dual ammo guns as the rifling is shallow so I stick with pellets. Umarex USA rates the Px4 at 380 fps using pellets.
This little pistol was fun to shoot and accuracy was on par with other semi-auto replica pistols. It would be an excellent training replica for holster drills and dry-fire practice. There were no feeding problems or malfunctions. While the MSRP lists at $110, here is a direct link to the Airguns of Arizona page where the Px4 Storm lists for $79.95: http://www.airgunsofarizona.com/co2/beretta-px4-storm/. The warranty offered with the pistol covers the buyer for 90 days.