Dart Zone Max Omnia Pro…Initial Drama Recap?

Is it fair to give the Omnia Pro a straight review at this time? Perhaps not. Dart Zone has all but officially announced they’re pulling the Omnia off the metaphorical shelves until new (and properly working) units arrive. But it seems irresponsible to ignore the many issues that I and others have seen with the initial wave. Especially since many of us (myself included) paid the $90 price tag.

As such, let’s do a recap of the Wave One Omnia!

Delays, Delays!

The Omnia comes with select fire; you can leave it in off (but still rev the flywheels for fun), singe shot, three-round burst, or full auto. Cool feature, right? Even if not everyone uses every mode, having the options there on a pro flywheel blaster is great.

That is, unless there’s a ton of time between pulling the trigger and the dart actually firing.

Yep, that’s correct. For some reason, the pusher runs slower on burst mode than full-auto. It runs slower still on single-shot; between my experience and others, the semiauto delay can vary from 1/3 to 1/2 second. For some reason, it just seems like the blaster is running the pusher motor at lower voltages for lower rates of fire. That makes anything but full auto pointless to use in a “pro” setting – at least with a mechanical pusher, a Dart Zone Pro Mk3 can do 3-4 darts per second on semiauto. You’d be extremely lucky to get 2 out of the Omnia.

Adding to the strangeness is the “home” position for the pusher mechanism. There’s a paddle system for pressing the cycling switch, with holes in the pusher wheel for mounting a screw (which presses that paddle). There are multiple holes already in the pusher wheel, but in stock form, it’s forcing the pusher to make 1/2 – 3/4 of a rotation before contacting the dart (dependent on firing mode, and how long it takes the paddle to slow down). I ended up just drilling a new hole to put “home” on the opposite side of normal. That makes the first dart fire much faster, at least, but the paddle still needs to slowly rotate around before you can fire again in semi-auto. That’s disappointing.

Hard Right, Captain!

Another issue that was immediately obvious (but especially in battle) was the blaster shooting to the right. It’s hard trying to aim at someone by NOT aiming at someone, even if it’s doing so consistently.

I looked at several possibilities for what was causing this. Was it the off-center pusher wheel (it sits to one side)? Nope, even after trimming plastic and physically lowering the pusher mechanism in the shell, darts flew sideways – they weren’t being pushed sideways into the flywheels.

Were the flywheels bad or misaligned? Replacing them with Worker wheels accomplished nothing on that front, but it did lead to me finding the motor mount screws weren’t tight. Whoops.

The post mounts in the shell all appeared level, so the only real option left was that the cage itself was crooked, even if it didn’t initially appear that way to the naked eye. I ended up stuffing a small bit of heat shrink tubing between the front screw posts and mounting holes, letting it get squished between the cage and blaster shell. That moved the angle of the cage slightly left. THAT is what finally did the trick. So for whatever reason, the cage itself (at least in my case) wasn’t straight. Perhaps sticking a single layer of electrical tape in that spot (and poking the screw through it) would do the same thing? As would just having a cage that works in the first place…

EDIT: Another hobbyist had a more elegant solution, putting o-rings under the post mounts. Small o-rings, around 4-5mmOD, would be ideal, and they can be squished down until you get the cage lined up right.

Other Issues

These are the top two issues, but there are others – some serious, some less so. Many blasters have extremely weak Talon magazine retention – a slight shake is enough for the magazine to drop out! Mine wasn’t too bad in initial testing, until a friend tried using his own magazines and they just fell out.

Internally, the Omnia Pro uses 5A switches for both triggers – and given that the blaster is using hobby-grade motors that can be feeding up to 8 darts per second through them on full auto…that’s a lot of stress for a tiny switch. Many people had DZP Mk3 switches in that style burn out during regular use, so the continued use is annoying at best. ESPECIALLY when there are 10a switches in that form factor, and they’re being used in blasters like the Hydro Strike Stratos (review coming soon).

Last Thoughts

Not everyone who buys a Dart Zone Max blaster is a modder that knows how to fix their blaster, or has time to do so. So what happens if you bought one of the first wave Omnias? I don’t know. Dart Zone, aside from reaching out to reviewers who received samples to hold off on reviews until they relaunch the blaster in the fall, hasn’t said what they’re doing about current customers. Ideally, you could return the blaster to Walmart…if you still have the packaging. But for anyone who tore it apart to play with their brand new pro blaster…that’s not really an option. We’ll see how Dart Zone responds publicly to the issue, especially since the Nerf Pro Stryfe X is launching and by all appearances just simply works. Time isn’t really on Dart Zone’s side here.