7 Best .22 Air Rifles – (Reviews & Unbiased Guide 2020)

In recent years, recreational shooting has become a very popular activity, especially in the United States. Designed for target shooting and small game hunting alike, an air rifle will offer you precision, accuracy, as well as a great time. This is one of the main reasons why so many gun options are just at your fingertips. If you want to find the best 22 air rifle, there are many models on the market to choose from. 

Since there are so many items available out there, it is hard to tell which one you should select. The 22 air rifle reviews we have prepared should help you understand the most important features of the top-rated products in this line and maybe even select one from this list. However, we have also prepared a comprehensive buying guide and other essential information that will teach you exactly how to find the most appropriate gun for you.

Gamo Swarm Maxxim Air Rifle .22 Caliber B01MU0V0K5

Gamo Swarm Maxxim Air Rifle .22 Caliber  

  • Length: 45.3″
  • Weight(pounds): 5,64 
  • Scope Included: Yes 
  • Price: $$-$$$
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Hatsan 95 Air Rifle Combo Walnut Stock .22 Air Rifle B008DZHN1I

Hatsan 95 Air Rifle Combo Walnut Stock .22 Air Rifle 

  • Length: 44.75″ 
  • Weight(pounds): 11 
  • Scope Included: Yes
  • Price: $$-$$$
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Crosman Optimus .22 Caliber Air Rifle B004V957DG

Crosman Optimus .22 Caliber Air Rifle 

  • Length: 43.0″ 
  • Weight(pounds): 6,5 
  • Scope Included: Yes
  • Price: $
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Benjamin Marauder Synthetic Stock Hunting Air Rifle B00AU6EICA

Benjamin Marauder Synthetic Stock Hunting Air Rifle 

  • Length: 42.5″ 
  • Weight(pounds): 7,12 
  • Scope Included: No
  • Price: $$$$$
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Gamo Magnum Air Rifle .22 B01D1O5VFK

Gamo Magnum Air Rifle .22  

  • Length: 49.2″ 
  • Weight(pounds): 6,88
  • Scope Included: Yes
  • Price: $$$$
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Ruger Air Rifle with 4x32mm Scope, .22 Caliber B007H8FNSM

Ruger Air Rifle with 4x32mm Scope, .22 Caliber 

  • Length: 48.5″ 
  • Weight(pounds): 9,5 
  • Scope Included: Yes
  • Price: $$$
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Umarex Ruger Targis Air Rifle with Scope B00KNB0AL0

Umarex Ruger Targis Air Rifle with Scope 

  • Length: 44.75″ 
  • Weight(pounds): 8,5 
  • Scope Included: Yes
  • Price: $$$
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Best .22 Air Rifle Reviews

1. Gamo Swarm Maxxim Air Rifle .22 Caliber 

Gamo Swarm Maxxim Air Rifle .22 Caliber B01MU0V0K5This model is one of the most powerful .22 air rifles with minimum shooting noise. The steel-barreled multi-shot break barrel air rifle has a 10-shot repeater. Furthermore, it comes with the Custom Action Trigger that is adjustable in both the first and second stage and it also allows you to hold your trigger. 

The Recoil Reducing Rail increases the scope’s lifespan with 99.9% recoil compensation. Another thing that makes the Gamo Swarm Maxxim Air Rifle .22 Caliber stand out is the 10X Quick-Shot technology that can utilize a ten-round rotary-style magazine. What does that mean to you? You will enjoy faster loading for all repetitive shooting. 

Therefore, all you need to do is open its fluted polymer rifled steel barrel and fire for extremely quick shots. What is more, the rifle is equipped with a 3-9×40 scope that is shockproof as well as fog proof. Thanks to the two-piece aluminum construction, it is very sturdy and durable.


  • This model comes with a Shock Wave Absorber with three removable absorption cells
  • Its Inert Gas Technology provides consistent and steady power, while accuracy is increased and vibrations are minimized
  • Since it weighs only 5.64 pounds, it is great to use in the field


  • The quality of the scope could be better, as it is difficult to maintain the position of shooting

2. Hatsan 95 Air Rifle Combo Walnut Stock .22 Air Rifle 

Hatsan 95 Air Rifle Combo Walnut Stock .22 Air Rifle B008DZHN1IThe Hatsan 95 Air Rifle Combo Walnut Stock .22 Air Rifle uses .22 caliber pellets and can shoot lead pellets at an 800 FPS velocity. Alloy pellets can reach higher velocities of up to 1000 FPS. The break barrel of this rifle has a two-stage match trigger that is also adjustable.

Turkish walnut was used for the gun’s stock which also has a checkered forearm and pistol grip, as well as a rubber recoil pad. This absorbs a part of the recoil for the shooter to have more comfortable shooting experience. Furthermore, this model has high-quality fiber optic front and rear sights that are produced by TrueGlo. 

Even though the front sight is fixed, the rear one is adjustable. The rifle comes with a scope that is extremely accurate at short to medium distances and can handle many shooting scenarios well.


  • Since the security lever is placed behind the barrel, the rifle is more comfortable to use
  • The attention to details is truly visible in the design of this rifle
  • The scope and the open sights provide very accurate shootings


  • The rifle is quite heavy and not the most appropriate model for small-figured shooters

3. Crosman Optimus .22 Caliber Air Rifle 

Crosman Optimus .22 Caliber Air Rifle B004V957DGThis rifle comes from a brand that is known for its high-quality products that pretty much speak for themselves. This model features a break barrel and it is both powerful and elegant. In terms of usage, it is best recommended for target shooting and pest control. 

The Crosman Optimus .22 Caliber Air Rifle has an impressive velocity of 950 FPS which makes it a very powerful weapon. Besides its shooting capabilities, one of the most appreciated things about this model is its feathery weight. Moreover, the two-stage adjustable trigger mechanism is another appreciated feature. 

This rifle also comes with a 4×32 CenterPoint optics scope. Also, thanks to the fiber optic sights, you will be able to enjoy an excellent performance. If you are bothered by garden pests such as rats, mice, or even rabbits, this air rifle can help you get rid of them.


  • This model is suitable for both right and left-handed shooters
  • Despite its lightweight, it is a sturdy and powerful air rifle
  • The rifle is extremely easy to use, especially by experienced shooters


  • It makes a bit more noise compared to other available products in this line

4. Benjamin Marauder Synthetic Stock Hunting Air Rifle 

Benjamin Marauder Synthetic Stock Hunting Air Rifle B00AU6EICAIf you are looking for a truly quiet solution to hit your targets, the Benjamin Marauder Synthetic Stock Hunting Air Rifle might be just the gun for you. It is a break pellet gun packed with some amazing features and it is perfect for target shooting, hunting, as well as plinking. The Marauder Air Rifle Technology makes this model extremely quiet. 

Another thing you will appreciate about this gun is the reduced recoil, due to the Shock Wave Absorber recoil pad. Thanks to the quality construction, this model offers all-weather durability but also speeds of up to 100 FPS which is quite impressive. 

Furthermore, the synthetic stock features an ergonomic grip as well as an adjustable cheekpiece. Also, the cheekpiece works for both right and left-handed users. Thanks to the pressure gauge that is mounted in the forearm, you will be able to keep track of the usable pressure. 


  • This model is a PCP or precharged pneumatic rifle
  • It is also a ten-shot repeater and comes with an auto-indexing feature
  • The rifle has an awesome tuning ability
  • The 250 cc. reservoir can be filled up to 3,000 PSI


  • Since it is a PCP rifle, it requires an external filling source

5. Gamo Magnum Air Rifle .22 

Gamo Magnum Air Rifle .22 B01D1O5VFKCompared to other products in this line, this model will help you enjoy a more consistent velocity and less vibration. Besides its impressive power, this rifle also offers other notable advantages of the IGT MACH 1 piston. You will get improved accuracy, higher muzzle velocity, more power, reduced shock vibration, as well as smoother cocking. 

The velocity is truly outstanding as this model can reach 1300 FPS which is more than that of many other .22 caliber rifles. The Gamo Magnum Air Rifle .22 also features Recoil Reducing Rail or RRR. This means that it will help you overcome the gun’s taxing stresses placed from the strong recoil of air guns. 

The thumbhole black stock is ambidextrous and suitable to use in any kind of weather. Moreover, it is both attractive and comfortable to use. This rifle is also equipped with a 3-9×40 adjustable objective scope.


  • The Custom Action Trigger adjusts the trigger in the first and second stages independently
  • The rifle comes with a higher energy downrange compared to many other products in this line
  • The manufacturer offers a five-year warranty for this model


6. Ruger Air Rifle with 4x32mm Scope, .22 Caliber 

Ruger Air Rifle with 4x32mm Scope, .22 Caliber B007H8FNSMThis pellet weapon offers massive power and is ideal for target shooting, small game, and pest control. You will certainly be impressed with the high velocity offered by this air rifle that can reach 1,200 FPS. The Ruger Air Rifle with 4x32mm Scope, .22 Caliber is a spring-piston break barrel rifle with a single-shot cocking mechanism. 

This sturdy weapon comes with two fiber optic sights. The front one is fixed, while the rear one is adjustable. Moreover, the rifle also comes with an amazing 4×32 scope. Thanks to the outstanding stopping power, this air rifle can easily take small and medium-sized games with just one shot. 

All these incredible features are completed by an adjustable two-stage trigger as well as an automatic safety. The stock is made of a matte black composite that shrugs water and also offers checkering in the most precise spots to sustain your grip.


  • The all-weather stock is suitable for both right and left-handed shooters
  • The lockdown all-metal mount helps in preventing creep
  • This model comes with a rubber recoil pad that absorbs the felt recoil


  • The trigger is not so easy to adjust
  • The mounting rail of the scope does not seem to be of the highest quality

7. Umarex Ruger Targis Air Rifle with Scope

Umarex Ruger Targis Air Rifle with Scope B00KNB0AL0This model was designed with the outdoorsman in mind, to get out in the woods. It is a high-velocity and high-impact pellet air rifle that shoots .22-caliber pellets. This model was certainly not intended for beginners and small-figured people as it is very sturdy and a bit heavy. 

Thanks to the combination of the SilencAir Noise Dampening System and the 1200 FPS velocity, this gun is ideal for small game hunting but also for target shooting. Compared to many other magnum air rifles, this one is easier to cock the break barrel. This is one of the reasons why this model is so popular. 

The rifle is equipped with a 3-9×32 scope, an adjustable two-stage trigger, as well as an all-weather stock. What is more, the Umarex Ruger Targis Air Rifle with Scope also features the integral Nucleus Rail Platform that is engineered to reduce the scope’s movement and vibration, maintaining its zero shot after shot.


  • The 5-chamber sound suppressor is fixed to maximize stealth and reduce downrange noise 
  • This model comes with an automatic safety switch
  • The sleek black look of the air rifle will make all eyes turn on you


It may be difficult for some users to cock

How Do Air Rifles Work? 

1. What is an air rifle?

.22 air rifle reviewsAn air rifle is a type of gun that shoots projectiles pneumatically using compressed air or other types of gases that are mechanically pressurized. In contrast with firearms that pressurize gases chemically through exothermic oxidation of combustible propellants, air rifles do not involve any chemical reactions. 

Both air rifles and air pistols usually propel metallic projectiles. They can be either diablo-shaped pellets or round shots that are also called BBs. Some rifles may propel arrows or darts.

2. What are the main components?

The butt pad or recoil pad is an extremely useful feature that has the role of absorbing kinetic energy. Moreover, it helps to maintain the gun’s butt in the same position, shot after shot. A high-quality butt-pad offers good traction against the user’s clothing. 

The stock is the main rear part of the rifle. It is where your cheek rests while shooting. It has an iconic shape.

The portion of the mechanism that is held by the user’s hand is called a pistol grip. It orients the hand similarly to the position you would take when holding a regular pistol.

The trigger guard is the loop that surrounds the trigger of the rifle and it protects it from discharging accidentally. 

Other Components

The long cylindrical piece that the projectile fires out of is called the barrel. It is usually made of metal. The barrel sight is placed at the end of the barrel.

A muzzle brake or a recoil compensator is a device that is connected to or part of the rifle’s construction. It is intended to redirect a part of the propellant gases to counter unwanted muzzle rise and recoil.

Even though not all air rifles are equipped with it, the scope magnifies the object you are targeting and places you on the same visual plane with the item in question.

Advantages Of a .22 Air Rifle

  • .22 caliber air rifles do not require too much space to shoot safely. Also, lead pellets flatten upon impact and they usually do not ricochet. In other words, .22 air rifles can be safely used in enclosed spaces such as barns and feed silos.
  • With very few exceptions, air rifles produce a noise level that is significantly lower than that generated by firearms. There are many models available on the market, and you can easily find one that is extremely quiet if that is what you are looking for. 
  • .22-caliber air rifles are also remarkably versatile. You can use them for recreational shooting, target shooting, small game hunting, as well as pest control.
  • Another advantage of using .22 air rifles is the cost. You can perform most of the activities you would with a firearm, but with a fraction of the cost. 

.177 vs .22 Air Rifles

.177 vs .22 Air RiflesFirst of all, we should discuss the term caliber. When referring to guns, this term is used to specify the internal diameter of the gun barrel bore. It can be measured in inches or millimeters. To give you a clear example, a .45 caliber gun has a barrel diameter of 0.45 inches. 

A .177 air rifle has a barrel with a diameter of 0.177 inches, while the .22 air rifle, 0.22 inches. Both of these calibers are great for small game and target rounds. While the .177 caliber is the standard in shooting competitions worldwide, the .22 caliber is regularly used for hunting. 

.177 and .22 have become the most favorite pellets for hunters nowadays. Still, many of them have a really tough time deciding which one is better. Of course, when it comes to pellet pistols, rifles, and guns, in general, it all comes to each user’s needs and preferences. 

Why Go For a .22?

We will provide you with a few reasons why you can consider the .22 air rifles better. However, this does not mean that the other option does not have its advantages. 

If you are looking for power, you should know that a .22 caliber can produce 20% more power per shot compared to a .177 caliber. If you are using an alloy pellet, then it almost duplicates the weight. This will also help you hit the target with a great performance from a fair distance.

When it comes to accuracy, the .22 caliber has a better weight than the .177. It gains powers and maintains the accuracy level steady. Rather than being a bit slower, the .22 can hit and retain precision, while making a huge impact on the target.

It is easier to hit small games with an accurate and precise shot. Using a .22 caliber, you will be able to kill a bit larger animals than rabbits and you do not even have to be completely accurate because this caliber stunts the target for a few seconds. This gives you enough time to reload and take a second shot.

Shooting at close range can also be easier with a .22 caliber. Clearly, the .177 has a higher velocity than the other one, but it is more suitable for long-range targets. Many shooters feel more accurate shooting a .22 caliber at close range because it provides additional power on impact with the target.

.22 Air Rifle Buying Guide

best .22 Air RifleDeciding on an air rifle is not as easy as you might think. First of all, there are so many models on the market from so many manufacturers, that it is very hard to choose just one. Besides the abundance of products in this line, there are a lot of factors and features to consider in order to ensure that you made the right choice. 

If you are a beginner, it is even harder. If you are an airsoft marksman enthusiast, you already know that airsoft sniper rifles are remarkably powerful and accurate. In this article, we have compiled a good deal of important information that you should keep in mind when looking for a .22 air rifle. 

1. What to consider

Before we dive into the components and features part, you should know that there are some essential things that you should consider. First of all, you need to decide what you need the air rifle for? 

1.1 What type of shooter are you?

10-meter competition shooters have different requirements than hunters. As a result, different needs demand different guns with various costs, features, and abilities. For a competition shooter accuracy is more important than power. 

On the other hand, hunters need accuracy, as well as speed and power. Recreational shooters are usually looking for fun plinking at targets. For such needs, semi-auto models are very popular. 

1.2 How far do you plan to be shooting?

While this may not make so much sense when you first see it, you should know that this is another important factor you ought to keep in mind. If you are a competition shooter, you will need to practice for certain distances. If you are a small game hunter, there are other distances you should consider. However, you might want an air rifle to control pests in enclosed spaces such as your barn. Again, various distances require different rifles. 

1.3 Still or moving targets?

Different uses of air rifles are one of the most important things to consider. Some users aim at still targets such as competition or recreational shooters. For this, you require an accurate gun. However, if you plan on targeting moving games, your gun needs to be accurate, powerful, and even have quick reloading capabilities. 

2. What to look for 

Once you set your goal and decide what you need the air rifle for, things are going to be easier. However, there are various features and capabilities you need to know about, before making a decision. 

2.1 Type

Pneumatic or pump air rifles are powered by a pumping level which elevates air into its chamber. Such a unit requires the user to manually pump it five to ten times after each shot. This type of air rifle works with pellets and BBs. These units are usually cheap, and a great choice for beginners and young kids. They are also great for plinking, target shooting, and even pest control.

As the name suggests, spring-powered air rifles use a spring that compresses the air into its chamber as the power source. There are three types of spring designs, namely side lever, underlever, and break barrel. Spring-powered air rifles are very easy to use, very powerful and accurate. However, they may be harder to cock for a weaker person. 

Then, there are the CO2-powered air rifles that use compressed gas or cartridges as a power source when shooting. While they might not be as powerful as the other two types, these units do not require any pumping before shooting.

2.2 Caliber

The caliber of your air rifle should be determined by the intended use of the gun. As a general rule, the bigger the caliber, the larger the animal you can strike down. .177 calibers are the most accurate and fastest long-range options in the air rifle world. They can be used efficiently for small games like pigeons, for instance. 

.22, as well as .25, have more power, but less speed and range. They are ideal for medium games such as rabbits and raccoons. You can also opt for .20, .30, .357, .45, .50, or .58, but they are less common than the first three options mentioned above. 

Bigger calibers are extremely powerful, and they can bring down larger games such as boar or deer. It is important to choose your air rifle so that you can kill your prey in an ethical manner. 

2.3 Velocity

Again, depending on the intended use, velocity might be an important factor in deciding on the model you want. FPS stands for feet per second and it refers to the speed of the pellet that is fired. If you are going to be targeting pests, for example, you will need an air gun with high velocity. This is not such an important aspect for a recreational or target shooter. 

2.4 Weight

It goes without saying that you will need to be able to handle and carry your air rifle. For this reason, it is important to check the weight of the model you intend to purchase and to make sure that you will be able to easily handle the unit. 

2.5 Aesthetics

While appearance does not have to do much with the rifle’s performance, it is also a factor you should take into consideration when purchasing one. You should look at the stock’s shape, the quality of the bluing, as well as the overall presentation of the gun and other cosmetics. 

You need to be comfortable with the way your unit feels, as you will be able to shoot with more confidence. This will also improve performance when using the gun, even if only indirectly.

2.6 Ammunition

When looking for an air rifle, you should also take the type of ammo it is capable of using into consideration. Many shooters like an air gun that will enable them to switch up the ammunition for different users. 

Pellets are best for small game hunting, but they may not be the most suitable option for target shooting. If you do not want to constantly reload your gun, you might prefer a model that has a large BB reservoir that can hold between 300 and 400 BBs. 

Hunting With a .22 Air Rifle

  • Hunting With a .22 Air RifleWhen hunting, accuracy is very important as well. It doesn’t really matter what caliber gun you are using if you cannot hit your target accurately. 
  • The most effective shot is to the brain. If you manage to do this right, the targeted animal dies instantly, which is also the most humane way to hunt any type of animal. 
  • If you do not manage to shoot at the intended spot, your target can escape and will die slowly and painfully. 
  • Therefore, if you intend to use your air rifle for hunting, make sure that it was designed with the accuracy and power necessary to kill your intended game. Therefore, you can check these air rifle tips for small and large games.
  • One other important thing to consider is that you should practice, but not on live targets. If you are not an experienced shooter, you should practice a lot before starting to point your rifle at live prey.

Air Rifle Accessories

In addition to the air rifle itself, you will also need some accessories. These are intended to offer your gun better performance, make things easier for you, and maintain your rifle in good condition.

1. Scopes

A good air rifle scope can help you visually bring your target closer so that you can deliver an accurate strike. When it comes to air rifles, you do not need to select a scope with large lenses, as there is no sense in adding extra weight. For these types of guns, you should go for optics with a lens diameter in the range of 20 and 32 mm. 

They are average-sized and deliver good shooting results. Anything bigger is not needed and it will also be a waste of money. In case you have poor eyesight, you should purchase a scope that has diopter correction. That way, you will not have to wear your glasses when using it.

2. Sights

Reflex sights are the most popular types of red dot sights on the market. There are other types as well, such as holographic sights that use a technology patented by EOTech and prism sights which use a prism to focus light on a focal point. 

These items offer increased advantage when it comes to the speed you will have bringing your rifle to bear accurately in short-range engagements.

3. Cleaning kits

When it comes to tactical gear, surely you want everything to go smoothly and offer the best possible performance. Your air rifle will not work at its full potential if you neglect it. It is essential to keep your gun clean and a cleaning kit specifically designed for this purpose will help you a lot. 

Usually, these kits come in a case, and they typically contain a bore cleaning brush, a cleaning jag, a slotted patch holder, a cleaning rod, patches, cleaning brushes, the cleanser, as well as lubricating oil. However, before getting such a kit, make sure that it is suitable for your type of rifle.

FAQ About .22 Air Rifles

1. Can a .22 air rifle kill humans?

Even though a .22 air rifle is not as powerful as other guns, it can still hurt and even kill humans. High-velocity air rifles, often advertised as starter guns for kids, can actually cause lethal injuries despite non-lethal appearing wounds. 

Models that exit velocities of 1,200 FPS or more and kill and have been used in accidental deaths, suicides, and homicides. Moreover, diablo pellets can penetrate flesh similarly to bullets. Also, minor-appearing external damage can mask major internal damage. Air rifles should be used only for hunting or recreational shooting. They are not toys!

2. Should I invest in a good scope for my .22 air rifle?

This depends on a few factors. For example, for close-range target shooting a scope might be less effective compared to physical sites. It is up to each shooter to determine at what distance a scope becomes useful. Air rifle scopes can be extremely effective when hunting, as long as shooters are not aiming at targets beyond the weapon’s range. Also, the scope needs to be zeroed on the target before shooting an air rifle. Hunting with an air rifle is usually done close-range and for small game. Therefore, a moderate-powered scope such as 10×40 power should be efficient.

3. What causes accuracy issues in a .22 airgun?

There are a few factors that might cause accuracy problems. One of them can be loose stock screws. This usually happens with spring guns. What you should do is to clean all of the screws with alcohol and also use some Threadlocker Loctite on the treads, then reinstall them. You should also check for tightness from time to time. 

A dirty barrel can also lead to accuracy issues. You should make sure that the bore is clean. If you are using an incorrect pellet type, you may encounter the same problems. You need to check different pellet types and use the most appropriate pellet for your rifle. 

Other causes for accuracy issues can include loose barrel pivot bolt, scope, or iron sights which should frequently be checked for tightness. Also, a poor shooting technique or an inconsistent hold of the gun can lead to missing your targets. For this, it is very important to practice as much as possible.

4. What is a knock open valve?

It is a system that has been developed Air Arms in the course of many years. This valve system is placed between the barrel and the rifle’s main air reservoir. When the trigger is pulled, the valve opens for enough time to enable a blast of air to move from the reservoir down the barrel while also pushing the pellet along. 

The cool thing about the knock open valve system is that when the tank is full and has a high amount of pressure, it will only open the valve for a fraction of a second. However, when the air pressure is low, it will allow more air to pass. If you have air between 105 and 185 bar, the pellet should leave the barrel at a constant speed.

Best .22 Air Rifles Comparison Chart

LengthWeight(pounds)Scope IncludedPrice
Gamo Swarm Maxxim Air Rifle .22 Caliber
Hatsan 95 Air Rifle Combo Walnut Stock .22 Air Rifle44.75"
Crosman Optimus .22 Caliber Air Rifle
Benjamin Marauder Synthetic Stock Hunting Air Rifle
Gamo Magnum Air Rifle .22
Ruger Air Rifle with 4x32mm Scope, .22 Caliber
Umarex Ruger Targis Air Rifle with Scope

Wrap Up

Once you know what to look for, finding the best .22 air rifle should become an easier task. We have gathered the most relevant information we found on this topic so that you can make a clear idea about what you should be searching for. 

Furthermore, the .22 air rifle reviews we have prepared are some of the top-rated models available on the market today, so you should be able to select one that best suits your needs. However, finding a model that you like is not all there is to it. 

There are various factors you should take into consideration not only for the best performance of the rifle but also for your safety. For this reason, the buying guide and the other information we have provided should be a very good starting point for you to get the most appropriate .22 air rifle and to be able to enjoy it with each use.