Magpul makes firearm accessories for both military and civilian firearms. Although they don't make airsoft accessories directly, third parties have licensed the right to replicate Magpul accessories for airsoft. One such accessory is the Magpul PTS 30 Round EMAG for M16/M4 variant airsoft rifles, which replicate the Magpul PMAG.
The Magpul 30 round EMAG is made out of polymer. Keep in mind that that real PMAG is also made out of polymer. The EMAG feels extremely hard and solid in the hand. In fact, it feels beefier than the metal magazines for M16/M4. The plastic magazine is also lighter than the metal magazine. The photo below shows the magazine mounted in APS ASR106 Mini Patriot M4 airsoft rifle.
The beauty of this magazine is that there is no winding wheel, nor does the BB rattle in the magazine. Both of these benefits means the magazine is more realistic than a typical airsoft magazine. In addition, it makes you stealthier on the battle field.
Much like the real PMAG ammunition magazine, the EMAG 30 has a window that shows the ammunition (see photo below). The problem is that the replica has a fake window, which doesn't actually show the airsoft BB's in the magazine.
There is a removable plate at the bottom of the magazine. We thought it is used to take the magazine apart to clean or to remove a jam. But it turns out that there is nothing under the plate as shown in the photo below. It's purely a decoration piece. You can replace it with the PMAG Ranger Plate, though.
Check out our "Magpul PMAG Ranger Plate Review" article.
There are numerous accessories for the Magpul PMAG, such as the PMAG Ranger Plate, Maglink Magazine Coupler, PMAG Impact/Dust Cover, and the Magpul - 7.62 NATO. Since the EMAG is a replica, these accessories should fit onto the EMAG to give you certain advantages.
Unlike a high-cap magazine where you can pour BB's into a large hole, the only way to load the Magpul 30 round EMAG is to use to speed loader. That's pretty typical of an airsoft magazine that doesn't rattle. The loading hole has a switch (see photo below) that lets you unload all of the BB's in the magazine quickly. The switch is too stiff to actuate with fingernail. We had to use a precision screwdriver to actuate it.
The whole purpose of the 30 round magazine is to provide realism as the real M16/M4 magazine only holds 30 NATO ammunition rounds. In military simulation (MilSim) airsoft games, you will be limited in this manner. But we found that the Magpul 30 round airsoft magazine can actually hold more than 30 rounds of airsoft BB. Therefore, you can't use the magazine to gauge how many BB's to load.
We found the best method to load 30 rounds in this magazine is to determine how many BB your speed loader feeds per injection. Then use that number to determine how many times to inject. For example, our speed loader feeds 4 BB's at a time (see photo below). Therefore, seven injections loads 28 BB's into the magazine. Then simply load two more using the speed loader to make it 30 rounds. In fact, it's actually better to load 32 rounds (divide-able by 4), because the last two BBs in an airsoft magazine usually won't load into the hop-up anyway.
The good news is that Magpul now makes a 40 round PMAG, so you can now load up to 40 rounds in the EMAG and still qualify for MilSim. Just inject 10 times with the speedloader.
The fact is that you can load less BB's with any high capacity magazine. You can use a high-cap magazine and still only load 30 rounds for MilSim. Luckily, Magpul EMAG is also available in a 120 round mid-cap version (see "Related Links" below). We suggest getting the 120 round mid-cap version instead of the 30 round version for this reason.
In a separate order, we purchased two 75 round version from Evike. However, Evike delivered two 30 round EMAG's. We are a little confused whether Evike sent us the wrong product, or they are simply claiming the 30 round version can hold 75 rounds.
For the field test, we used the APS ASR106 Mini Patriot M4 rifle. After inserting the magazine into the rifle, we started firing. After about three to five shots, the rifle would dry fire. Inspection showed that the EMAG had quite a bit of play in the magazine well; it pushes down by a few millimeters after locking in.
If we hold the magazine in by hand, then the rifle fires fine with no misfire. But having a magazine with so much play from the factory, doesn't seem acceptable. We have three of these magazines and they all have the same amount of play.
Our solution? Hockey tape around the magazine (see photo below). Two layers are a little too thick, but keeps the magazine in place when loaded.
The photo above also shows the Magpul PMAG Ranger Plate attached at the bottom of the magazine. It made it a lot easier to grab out of my magazine pouch.
The plastic Magpul PTS 30 Round EMAG Airsoft Magazine seems to be welded shut. There seems to be no way of disassembling this magazine. There is a circular port on top of the mag where the spring is inserted. However, it is glued shut. The only way to remove it is to pry it off, damaging the circular cover. The spring will pop out.
Last night, one of my EMAG jammed. There was no way to clear the jam. So I pried the circular cover off. Pulled the spring out and removed the jammed BB's.
There is now a new feeder head for the Magpul PTS EMAG that would eliminate the chance of jamming. See the "M4 Mid-Cap Magazines Constantly Jams" thread for details.
Unfortunately, there is no way to fasten the circular cover back, unless you permanently glue it in place. To service the magazine, you'll have to purchase a replacement circular cover. Airsoft3D makes a replacement. The photo below shows the replacement cover. See "Related Links" below.
I did figure out a way to jury-rig it so that a replacement cover is not needed. After you pry the circular cover off, you can throw the cover away. But keep the spring and the spring guide (see photo below). You'll also need a tiny screw, which is also shown in the photo below.
Insert the spring and the spring guide back into the magazine. Then push the spring guide toward the side, so that it is held in place as shown in the photo below.
In the space between the magazine port wall and the spring guide, screw the small screw in to hold the spring guide in place. The photo below shows the final rig. Now the magazine is working again.
If you are not the handy type, who rather buy new magazines than fixing them, then the EMAG is for you. But if you are handy and rather fix your mags, stay away from the Magpul PTS 30 Round EMAG Airsoft Magazine.