Best Airbrush Compressor

What is the best airbrush compressor? This is the second most asked question from someone new to airbrushing. The first of course being – What is the best airbrush? The simple answer to both of these questions is – the one that best fits your airbrushing needs.

If you have done any searches for an airbrush compressor than you have already noticed that there are many different types and package configurations available. And – not knowing the difference between them – can make the process of selecting the right one for you confusing. Some offer single piston, dual piston, exterior tanks, different pressure gauges etc.

We will take a look at all of those areas and a few more. Hopefully – if have done my job right – by the time your are done reading this article the process of getting the best airbrush compressor for you will have been made a lot less complex and the best part – saved you some money.

If you are in a rush, here are our top 6 airbrush compressors

Best Airbrush Compressors for 2020

The main function of the airbrush compressor is to provide clean air (no oil or water) consistently to the airbrush.

Here are out top 6 airbrush compressors with in depth review of each compressor. If you want to know more about airbrush compressor buying guide, we have included at the end of this article. So, keep reading!

Iwata-Medea Studio Series Smart Jet Compressor

Iwata Media Smart Jet compressor is powerful yet quiet and compact, with superior build quality. At 8 pounds, it is much lighter than most of the other popular models on the market.

It comes with smart technology features like instant start-up and auto-shut off and provides 60 minutes of continuous use. It employs a maintenance-free, oil-less single piston technology.

It is equipped with a moisture filter and a bleed-valve adjustment feature to adjust airflow and lower pressure.

It can provide 20 to 35 psi of pressure but cannot be used for higher-pressure applications. It does not come with a built-in regulator but can be fitted with one.

Iwata-Medea Power Jet Pro Double Piston Compressor

Dual-piston design provides two independent airbrush holders with individual air pressure and filters, allowing two airbrushes to operate in parallel.

A 2-litre or 1/2 gallon air storage tank is accommodated in its relatively light and compact body. It comes equipped with twin air regulators for pressure adjustment.

Provides working pressure up to 70 psi. It switches off at 45 psi for the tank to refill and that could be an interruption to look out for.

It can be more expensive than other air compressors on the market because of its enhanced features, but provides value for money.

PointZero 1/3 HP Twin Piston Airbrush Compressor

Manufactured by a family-owned American company. The components are produced in the best factories globally, where larger compressor manufacturers get their components from, and the final assembly is done at their plant in Florida.

Its oil-less design makes it maintenance-free and suitable for a wider range of airbrushing needs.

It is lightweight and is quiet yet powerful. It is ergonomically designed with easy-grip handles and rubber feet.

The dual operating modes include a primary mode where the unit shuts off at 60 psi and restarts at 40 psi. The other mode provides uninterrupted pressure of up to 85 psi.

Its thermal protection feature automatically shuts off the unit if it gets overheated. It may not be compatible with standard size hoses.

Badger TC910 Aspire Pro Airbrush Compressor

Its main draw is a one-gallon air tank that ensures uniform pressure without pulsing, as the airbrush is drawing air from the tank instead of from the pulsing pistons.

Extremely quiet operation at 49 decibels makes it quieter than most of the popular models.

It comes equipped with an auto shutoff feature and two airbrush holders.

It has a more effective moisture trap technology, with moisture being trapped in the air tank before it reaches the inline trap.

At 18 pounds, it is among the heavier models available.

Paasche D3000R 1/5 HP Compressor with Tank

It is lightweight and portable although it is equipped with a 3/4 gallon tank for smooth air flow without pulsing.

At 47 decibels, it operates much more quietly than most other models. The oil-less sing-piston design makes it maintenance-free.

It has auto-stop and start technology. It shuts off only when air is running low in the tank, thereby providing uninterrupted air flow for a longer time.

It is equipped with a regulator and moisture-trap.

It provides a maximum pressure of 40 psi and and so it can only be used for low and medium pressure airbrushing activities.

Master Airbrush Model TC-40 with Air Hose and Water Trap Filter

At 7 pounds, it is one of the lightest compressors available. At 1/6 HP, it is powerful and delivers an air flow of 23 liters per minute.

It is thermally protected and shuts off when the unit become overheated. It has a compact design and an ergonomic handle for portability. It comes equipped with two airbrush holders and a 6 inch hose.

A built-in cooling fan ensures longer operation without overheating and longer product life. It has a single-piston oil-less design making it maintenance-free.

It operates quietly at 47 decibels.

Airbrush Compressor Buying Guide

When buying an airbrush compressor, you need to look at the following points.

  • Airbrush compressor motor – dual or single piston
  • External air tank
  • In line air pressure gauge
  • In line air filtration (water trap)
Airbrush compressor

Airbrush Compressor Motor

Single piston – The single piston airbrush compressor is used for smaller area airbrushing with relatively thinner paints and at a lower pressure.

Dual piston – The dual piston doubles the amount of air produced and produces more pressure over the same amount of time the compressor is running compared to a single piston.

External Air Tank

Both the single and dual piston compressors have the capability of adding and external air tank. The external tank not only provides uninterrupted flow of air – it also prolongs that life of the compressor by allowing it time to rest.

In line air pressure gauge

When learning to paint with an airbrush most beginners make the mistake of assuming that one set air pressure level will work with all paint mediums. This can become costly error. Different paints have different viscosity or thickness and some need to use more air pressure than others. Having an adjustable air pressure gauge is a must.

In Line Air Filtration

It doesn’t matter what kind of airbrush compressor that you end up with – a simple tool compressor or the best airbrush compressor on the market – if you don’t have some kind of air filtration (water trap) on it – that compressor is worthless.

Water Trap

Without water trap the air provided to the airbrush can become contaminated with oil and/or water. This problem can ruin whatever you are working on by spitting oil or water onto your paint – causing what is known as fisheye.

Deciding on what components you will need to fit your airbrushing style will make your choice of airbrush compressor much easier.

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