I’m a sucker for a good prototype. There is something about putting your hands on a gun before it is in production that feels like a glimpse of the future. So when Umarex invited me out to test out the Synergis, I jumped at the chance.
What is the Synergis? The gun’s new name doesn’t offer many clues. The neologism “synergy” means two different ideas or things that are combined to form one new thing or idea that is better than both of its separate parts. The synergy behind the Synergis is, as I see it, the combination of three things. The first is a magazine-fed pellet rifle (which isn’t new). The second is an under-lever design for cocking (getting warmer). The third is Umarex’s ability to make a reliable under-lever, mag-fed air rifle at an affordable price.
Enough with the neologisms. What is the Synergis? At its most basic, this is a full-sized .177 pellet rifle. The in-line system fires from a 12-round rotary magazine. The propulsion is provided by Umarex’s TNT gas-piston. The whole combination is ideal for plinking.
The magazine (which Umarex has called the RapidMag) rotates automatically. The shooter simply cocks the lever and the mag rotates in the next pellet. While it is hardly an automatic, the RapidMag speeds up shooting. Follow-up shots are much faster than they are with a traditional single-shot break-barrel as you only have to fumble around with the tiny pellets every twelve shots, instead of every single shot.
The barrel on the Synergis is fully shrouded. This system is much more common on pre-charged pneumatic guns and usually adds to the expense of the final package. Ports inside the shroud pull air back, away from the muzzle. This integral system dampens sound, making the Synergis very quiet.
The stock on the gun is black polymer. It is light for a full-sized air gun and has the traditional feel you would expect from a sporting stock. The clean sweeping lines mix well with sections of increased texture.
The controls on the gun are ambidextrous. A button above the trigger actuates the safety. It is a simple and time-tested design. When the rifle is on safe, the trigger won’t move.
On the other end, the charging handle locks in place below the barrel and it can be pulled down with either hand. The lever itself has a grip on it. Slide it down, and the lever unlocks. It is easy to compress, thanks to the mechanical advantage provided by the length of the lever.
One pump primes the rifle. The .177 pellets leave the barrel at 1000 fps. Accuracy is solid and dependable. Part of that comes from the way the lever works. With some break-barrel designs, the front sight makes a great hand-hold. Some put their hands on their sights and then wrench the barrel down to cock the gun. This has led many makers, including Umarex, to over-engineer the front sights, but it can still lead to problems.
The Synergis allows for a consistent shot via the fixed barrel. The stock doesn’t shift or flex during the cocking action. The scope rail is above the trigger, well behind the breech and allows the use of lower profile scope mounts compared to other repeating spring-type airguns. When combined with the fixed barrel, that rugged design helps ensure that even inexperienced users are not going to knock something out of whack.
Now here’s where I would normally wax poetic about how I grouped five rounds in a hole the size of a quarter. I did not. The prototype I was shooting was new. Very new. Umarex had yet to top it with a scope. I had an early, early look. As the Synergis doesn’t have iron sights, I was left with basic point shooting.
Even so, at 15-20 yards, I was able to put rounds on paper. Looking down a fixed rail allows for halfway decent alignment, honestly. After a few shots, I was good-to-go on the spinners Umarex had set up on the range.
The trajectory here is easy to see. The Synergis combines many of Umarex’s tried and tested designs into an under lever-action air rifle that is perfect for plinking.
Third, in my list of selling points is the price. Umarex has listed the Synergis at $169.99. Considering what you get, this is a steal. A solid piston rifle that fires fast is appealing enough. The Synergis, though, comes with a 3-9x40 scope that mounts on the gun’s Picatinny rail. And it comes with two magazines.
The Synergis will be in stores by the summer of 2019. I’ll likely have an opportunity to hit the range with a production model well in advance of that. If the Synergis lives up to its early promise, I doubt I’ll be disappointed.