NEOECO airbrush is a tool that we haven’t heard of before. It was hinted to us by a fan of our YouTube channel, who saw the reviews of other airbrushes that we made during the years. Since one of the most popular video reviews we’ve ever made was of a cheap Chinese airbrush, NEOECO immediately fell into a category that would eventually bring some extra interest. It is a new Chinese brand, it is available almost everywhere and most importantly – it is cheap. That of course, does not mean its quality necessarily corresponds to its price. However, before we start, we would like to remind you that as with most things in life, you get what you pay for and experienced modelers and airbrushers from all areas of life knows it best.
What we got in the mail was two boxes with two different airbrushes, both NEOECO brand. One is a simple set – reviewed here – while the other is almost all-in-one package. NEOECO offers different packings, fitting any need. But we purposefully picked the simplest option for a written review, since we all know that when everything comes in one box, especially when it is cheap – it will always be welcomed. That is not the case with airbrush that is a stand-alone tool though. In that case, more attention is always brought to the details, because the more simple the set is, the more time you have to focus on the little things.
Since we know the airbrushes are about those little things, let’s get started with what we got – a black box, with soft foaming material surrounding the airbrush. Not much on the outside of the box, besides a logo of NEOECO and a few damages that actually happened upon receiving the mail right in front of our eyes. The box is neat, although not superb in quality. Definitely better than the top-opener ones with clear plastic cover, typical for the old-ish Chinese-made airbrushes. On the bottom there is an instruction sheet which comes with thorough description of parts, in case you might need spares. We hit a bump here. The airbrush has no tick marks in its instructions and we didn’t actually knew what we got. In our specific case, that is a no-brainer, because we have plenty of other brushes to compare. But for a novice, this is a bummer. It says that the model is HD-180S, but there is .2, .3 and .4mm option nozzles, so a tick on one of those would have been helpful. Our estimation says it is .3mm.
The airbrush itself comes with soft semi-clear rubber cap to keep the needle protected, although we see no need for it. The cap works fine in that case. But extra-protection never hurts. The airbrush itself has very vivid appearance. It has a polished body and red tail, while in between them there is an orange element, which supposedly works for trigger-tension setter. Latter one is a feature that we barely experienced, but who knows – it might work for some. Nevertheless, the colors are pretty neat, making it attractive and reminding of some of the high-end airbrushes out there. Even though not exactly the case here.
Alongside with the airbrush, NEOECO put a wrench for the nozzle as well as hose connector, both useful tools. There is a plastic dropper too. Depending on the set you pick, you might end up with 3 nozzle/needle options, a hose, 3 or 4 color cups, etc. NEOECO offer variations in boxing and in color as well.
The color cup is 9cc, with a lid and rubber o-ring separating it from the base cup of the airbrush, which by itself is enough in volume for precision paint jobs. The lid came with few minor defect on its coating, but that is something we’ve seen before and never hurt anybody. The fact that the color cup can be removed is a nice one though. Some companies offer airbrushes with small size cup, usually 2cc. Same airbrush is often offered with 7 or 9cc cups. But non-removable. And different name of course. Here, we can have both, due to the design that NEOECO picked for their tool.
There is a tail stopper, which is useful tool for the inexperienced. It prevents from accidental trigger movements and over-spraying your details. That – with time – loses its charm and its usefulness, because your muscle memory kicks in. However it is nice to have it. Sometimes even the best out there drink too much caffeine. The other feature is the tension setter for the trigger. We found out that it worked mostly at the one end of its limits and not to a point that we would consider this to be an awesome feature. But theoretically, you turn it counter-clock-wise and you get stiffer trigger. Something that Harder & Steenbeck will benefit from more than anybody else in our opinion. With NEOECO any stiffness worked for us just fine.
The nicest feature of high-end airbrushes is the air flow control. As in the case of this NEOECO airbrush, it is often located between the business end of the airbrush and the color cup. It is again – a feature for most experienced among us, but it never hurts to have it. It works fine and lets you fine tune your work. Latter one critical when working on Luftwaffe mottling camouflages or Jagdtiger spotted schemes.
Overall the airbrush is a little bit nose heavy, mostly because of its features, but removing the 9cc cup and working with the small one changes that perspective. Our sample worked flawlessly and we were very happy with the results. Have in mind though, that when purchasing Chinese goods, it is often hit or miss situation. We’ve had airbrushes that needed additional tuning, polishing, etc. Even though not the case with this specific NEOECO airbrush, we would advice to check it carefully before keeping it. With our sample, only some lube around the trigger was needed to make it really smooth.
The airbrush is available through Amazon and Aliexpress, depending on your preferences and location. Alongside with their airbrush line, the company offers crown caps, air regulators, moisture traps, hoses and what not, which is great for your first tool with full equipment or for your workhorse if you already have a high-end ultra-expensive sniper brush.
Our impressions from NEOECO were predominantly good and we would recommend this tool for anyone who is about to test the deep waters of airbrushing. Just have in mind, that if you get too deep, this won’t be your last gun.
Here you can see a video review of SJ83 from NEOECO as well as short testing session of the Airbrush described in this review: