The Next Generation GX CS4 PCP Air Compressor Is Amazing!

Life is a funny thing – I grew up with firearms. Yeah, my dad had these two old pump action Daisy airguns that were fun to shoot tin cans with but starting at a pretty early age I liked things that went “bang”! Sometime in the early 2000s, I got back into airguns to deal with pests. I started hearing about a class of airguns called “pre-charged pneumatics” (PCPs) that used 3,000 PSI high pressure air cylinders somewhere on the rifle to propel the pellet. They were reported to be accurate, reliable and capable of rapid repeating fire through through the use of a manually operated bolt and a magazine.

I thought that sounded so neat – especially the rapid follow up shots. What stopped me from buying one was that they had to be refilled from a SCUBA tank that was filled at a diving shop. Well, I eventually found out there were specialized hand pumps and you didn’t need to spend a fortune on a tank and hassles with going to the dive shop. I bought a Hill Mk.4 hand pump along with a .22 Hatsan Gladius Long that I used for a few years.

Along the way, I found out that high pressure air compressors were falling in price. Those things used to be well past a $1,000, large, noisy, heavy and there was just no way I could swing one. In the fall of 2020 while surfing around on Amazon, a very affordable high pressure air compressor was doing really well. It was affordable, getting great reviews, portable and I didn’t have to mess with all kinds of oils and ice water cooling baths. It was the CS3 air compressor from GX. I bought one for $529.99 on November 23, 2022 – Amazon is cool in that I can search order history and pull up dates that I would have forgotten otherwise.

I wrote a post about buying it and also one about setting it up and testing it. I almost always used the CS3 to top off a really nice little Omni 18 cubic foot tank that I would then use to fill my growing number of PCP airguns. It really worked well – the tank was really convenient to pull out and top off an airgun and I would only occasionally need to bring out the CS3. Sure, I could have filled the airguns directly from the CS3 but I wanted to keep things simple.

Fast forward to January 2023 – I bought a .30 Umarex Gauntlet with a big cylinder and was planning to get one or two other high air consumption PCP rifles in 2023 so I started thinking about how to feed them. It was a total coincidence that GX unveiled their next generation CS4 compressor on Amazon. There were just a few four or five reviews at the time and I decided to gamble on the new pump and bought it on January 29, 2023. I took the leap because I had such a positive experience with the CS3 and I knew I could return it to Amazon if it turned out to be a problem child. [Yes, I bought this so you are getting my honest observations.]

On January 31, 2023 the Amazon driver brought be a big heavy cardboard box with the CS4 and I started getting my stuff together to do some testing plus a time slot to fill a big 6.8L carbon fiber tank from empty to 300bar which would take 2-3 hours I figured.

Now, I’m going to tell you something – it is slick. It is really, really slick. I’m telling you this so you take the time to read more in this post plus one about setting it up and testing it.

What is the CS4?

The CS4 is an additional pump offering from GX for people wanting to fill larger cylinders than the CS3. It also reflects design advancements to the CS3 unit – here are the features that really caught my eye:

Working Pressure
(Mfg supplied)
30MPa/300 bar (4,351 PSI)40MPa/400 bar (5,801 PSI) – 33% more pressure
Air volume
(Mfg supplied)
7 liters/minute (0.247 cubic feet/min)11 liters/min (0.388 cubic feet/min) – 57% more air volume output
Suggested Maximum Air Cylinder Size2.5 Liters6.8 Liters
CoolingAir with fansCoolant with radiator and fan
(Mfg supplied)
12V 250 Watts12V 350 Watts – 40% more watts
Duty Cycle (Mfg supplied)30 minutes working and 20 minutes cooling5 hours continuously working. Manual says to let it run for 1-2 minutes after pumping is complete – 10x longer duty cycle.
Sound Level (Mfg supplied)75db70db
Pump lubricationNot needed (until it slows down – mine hasn’t so far)Has a grease pot to add grease every 4-6 hours of run time
Limit switchSimple rotary dial limit switchProtected twin pin design where you can set both the limit and failsafe limit
Hose19.6″ permanently attached hose19.6 hose that is removable via a quick connect foster fitting
Weight (my digital scale)19.4 pounds29 pounds with antifreeze – 55% heavier
Dimensions (me with a tape measure)5-3/8″ wide (about 5-7/8″ wide including the wire spool on the side) x
9-1/2″ deep (10-1/4″ if you include the release valve) x
10-1/2 high at the top of the case (about 11-1/2 overall if you include the handle)
6″wide case (6-1/2″ wide with the wire spool) x
11-78 deep (12-3/4 if you include the release valve) x
12-1/2″ at the top of the case (about 13-1/2 at either the top of the grease pot or the folded handle) – about 62% larger overall

For me, the really long duty cycle is what I was looking for. The 57% increase in air output is a welcome enhancement to have over the CS3. Since I would fill my guns from my tank, I was never in a rush. Now that I have 6.8L tank, the fills will probably be less often but a lot more volume will be needed so it’s good to get that increase.

The increase in air pressure is overkill right now – there aren’t affordable 400 bar working pressure tanks as of yet – they are out there for specialty applications but are in the $1,500-2500 range. I’m sure the price will come down over time but most carbon fiber air tanks that PCP shooters are using are in the 300-310 bar working pressure range. If you see 400 bar, read the ad again because they may be talking about the test pressure and not the working pressure – you fill to the working pressure only – never to the test limit.

To be clear, the CS4 is not replacing the CS3. They have added the CS4 to fill larger tanks faster. They identify the 6.8 liter tanks as being the target max size for the CS4 and for me the duty cycle is the more important number. You can fill anything you want as long as you don’t bake the pump.

With the CS3 for example, the 20 minute duty cycle is what limits a convenient tank size. If I needed to fill my Omni 100 cu in (1.64 liter) tank from empty – I would let it run for 20 minutes and then I would stop the pump but let the fan run until it cooled down to room temp. I’d then close the cylinder valve, bleed the air out of the line, start the air pump again and as it came up to speed I would open the cylinder’s valve again. It took a while but it worked just fine. I tried to always be mindful of the duty cycle and give the unit a chance too cool down before I either shut it off or resume – I’m sure that’s one reason I’ve had zero problems with the CS3 since I bought it.

A five hour duty cycle with the CS4 is pretty amazing. I’ll tell you more about it when we get into the setup and testing.

Out of the Box Pictures

Let’s take a look here:

The CS4 was well packed. Amazon’s delivery group sometimes smashes delicate packaging so I was glad to see the unit was well protected in a plastic bag with styrofoam holding and protecting everything inside of the box.
They are using the same 12 volt 46.2 amp power supply. This allows you to either power the pump with a car/truck battery or use this power supply to charge at home. You can see the removable air hose under it still sitting in the styrofoam.
This is really nice. With the CS3, the air hose is bolted to the unit and gets in the way at times. With the CS4, there is a standard Foster quick connect. Notice the thought put into the hardline portion on the left side of those – this is the end that plugs into the pump and the metal line bends at an angle thus avoiding collapsing or weakening a flexible airline. It’s a well thought out change.
Starting from the top back – the silver cylinder is the grease pot that you use every 4-6 hours to introduce grease into the cylinder. The brass fitting is the safety burst disc. A burst disc plays an important safety role – it will blow out before an extreme pressure situation could cause a catastrophic failure of the pump. The clear circle has the pressure gauge and the two limit switches you can set. On the left is the power wire spool. The silver nozzle sticking out is the male foster fitting that the quick connect air hose goes to. On front side (colored black) – top right are the on/off switches for the pump itself. The red master switch turns the unit on and both the fan and coolant pump begin working. The black knob is the pressure release / bleed valve. Behind the circular slots sits the CS4’s radiator that has a fan cooling it – the antifreeze/distilled water flows through it to cool off.
The pressure gauge and limit switches surprised me. I went to rotate the switches by turning the silver knob and immediately felt a weird springy resistance. On the CS3 I always checked the pressure because if you bumped the knob the pressure limit changed. Well, now move the top silver “finger” around and push down to turn either limit switch. It’s less prone to being bumped and you have two limits – not just one. It’s not absolutely goof proof but I think it is a good next step from a safety perspective.
With high pressure systems, play it safe. My tank gauge vs. the pump’s gauge don’t match so I go with the higher of the two pressures. It’s called “conservativism” – go with the most conservative or safe number given the situation – don’t base your fill on the low-reading gauge, go with the one that says there is more air pressure just to be safe. In my shop’s air system I probably have a dozen pressure gauges and they all read slightly differently – I guess it is just the nature of the beast unless you want to spend a mint on calibrated accurate gauges.
On the back of the unit are vertical slots and when you look in you can see the cooling fins of the first stage cylinder liner.
The larger CS4 is on the left and the CS3 is on the right. The CS4 is intended for filling up to 6.8L bottles and the CS3 is targeted for smaller bottles and/or airguns. Note: GX makes two versions of the CS3 now – one with the external 12 volt power supply like I have as well as one that just plugs directly into the wall and does not have a 12 volt supply.
CS3 on the left vs the CS4 on the right.
One last comparison photo – the CS3 is on the left, the CS4 is on the right and the dogs’ water bowl is in the back 🙂 See how the air hose just dangles on the CS3? Being able to remove it completely from the CS4 really cleans things up plus opens the door for future hoses should you need them.

Here are Amazon links where you can read more about the units and/or buy them:


The CS4 compressor is a great new product offering from GX. In the next blog post I will walk you through setting the unit up and then testing. I’ve already done all of this so I’m telling you right now the CS4 is a solid unit. In the next post I’ll explain why I am so impressed along with what I did to set up and test it.

6/12/23 Update: Fixed the wording about being conservative. Thanks KG!

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