Most Powerful Break Barrel Air Rifles

  • Written By Eric Crouch on October 20, 2020
    Last Updated: February 1, 2021

Break barrel air rifles are one of the most popular forms of air weapons. The design is iconic, the mechanism simple, its function is reliable, and to this day they are still fantastic to use.

So, where do you start looking for these advanced classics, and how can you find one that will decimate anything that crosses its path with immense power? Luckily for you, there are plenty of powerful break barrel air rifles out there, and in this article, we will be looking at two of the best.


The design of the break barrel rifle hasn’t changed much over the years, and that old rifle your relative passed down to you will still function in much the same way as a modern break barrel.

With the use of modern materials and construction methods, a few things have changed with this style of air rifle, though. Power and accuracy have benefitted from technological advancements, and although the design of the break barrel has not strayed far, the performance improvements have greatly increased.

Our Top Picks

In a hurry? Check out the table below to see a helpful overview of each of our favorite products. Keep scrolling down to see a more in-depth review of each item.

ImageProductFeaturesPrice
Our Favorite
Umarex Diana RWS 350 Magnum
Umarex Diana RWS 350 Magnum
  • Break barrel action
  • Velocity: 1000 FPS
  • Automatic safety
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Best Value
Gamo Swarm Magnum
Gamo Swarm Magnum
  • High powered
  • Extremely accurate
  • Lightweight and easy to use
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Umarex Diana RWS 350 Magnum Spring-Powered Air Rifle

Our Favorite
Umarex Diana RWS 350 Magnum

Umarex Diana RWS 350 Magnum

Overall, the Umarex Diana is a spring-powered break barrel air rifle with heaps of power. It has a classic design, is built to last, and is beautiful to look at. If you’re looking for a classic style springer with a natural wood stock that performs as well as it looks, then this is the air rifle for you.

Our Score9.2 / 10

The Diana RWS 350 Magnum is a spring-powered break barrel air rifle beautifully crafted both mechanically and aesthetically. If you love the classic look and design of the traditional break barrel air rifle, then you will love the RWS 350. It is an extremely simple air rifle that is easily used and maintained by the beginner but also powerful and accurate enough to keep the more experienced marksman happy. This air weapon is stylish, streamlined, lightweight, and great fun to use for people of all ages and experience levels.

The power of the Diana RWS 350 is impressive, even when compared to entry-level PCP air rifles. At .22, it produces 1100FPS at 21ft-lbs of muzzle energy, which is more than enough for most target and hunting applications up to and over 80 yards. There are not many springer air rifles as powerful as this one, and it outperforms most of its competitors when muzzle energy is concerned. The gun can cope with the power as well. It is robust and built to high standards, so you have no worries of anything rattling loose over time or breaking from the strain of constant high-power shooting.

The accuracy of the RWS 350 is just as impressive as its power. In .22 the Diana provides plenty of power to project the heavy lead over distance accurately, but being a springer, you will need a certain level of skill. Once you know the gun and how it behaves, you will learn to master it and develop the skills needed to shoot it accurately over a distance. After you zero in the gun effectively and learn how the pellet drops as distance increases, this becomes a precise weapon to shoot with.

Pros
  • Break barrel action
  • Velocity: 1000 FPS
  • Automatic safety
Cons
  • Shipping packing could do with some additional protection

Gamo Swarm Magnum Gas-Piston Air Rifle

Best Value
Gamo Swarm Magnum Swarm Magnum Air Rifle

Gamo Swarm Magnum

Overall, the Gamo Swarm Magnum is a tactical powerhouse that offers the user great power and accuracy in a robust and durable shell. Everything about this rifle is high-tech, but in a user-friendly classic way that mixes the old with the new.

Our Score9 / 10

The Gamo Swarm Magnum Air rifle is a break barrel gas-piston weapon that uses Gamo’s IGT (inert gas technology) to produce hard-hitting power and an extremely fast velocity. The .177 caliber offers the user up to 1650FPS at 26.6ft-lbs of muzzle energy, and the .22 caliber variant offers the user up to 1200FPS at 26.6ft-lbs of muzzle energy.

That is an outstanding amount of power from a break barrel gas-piston air rifle, and you can expect to impact targets hard at up to 100 yards. It is safe to say that the Gamo Magnum has more than enough power for most hunting and serious target shooting applications.

This break barrel air rifle isn’t just a brute, either. Along with its impressive power output, it offers pin-point accuracy and precision when coupled with the right pellet. It’s extremely comfortable and easy to hold, and its lightweight stock doesn’t drop your arm off when holding it for long periods of time. A SWA (shock wave absorber) built into the design reduces recoil by up to 75%, and the featured CAT (custom action trigger) is responsive and easy to use, which aids in an accurate shot.

It comes with a factory-installed scope that is just as impressive as the rifle itself which is uncommon for combos in this price range. Once the scope is sighted-in correctly, it works together with the gun to make sure the pellet lands exactly where you want it to every time. Once you’ve found the perfect pellet, all of the Gamo’s features work together to offer ultimate power, accuracy, and precision.

If you’re are looking for more info on the Gamo Swarm Magnum air rifle, why not check out our even more in-depth review here.

Pros
  • Excellent value for money
  • Durable and ergonomic all-weather synthetic stock
  • Fitted with a high-quality, high-performance scope
  • Tactical Military styling
  • High powered
  • Extremely accurate even at long-range
  • Lightweight and easy to use
  • User-friendly CAT trigger
Cons
  • Quite Loud without a fitted silencer
  • A little bit difficult to cock which is normal with a high-powered gas-piston

What Are Your Options?

You have two options when buying a true break barrel, the gas-piston air rifle, and the spring-powered air rifle. They both have their pros and cons, but each can provide a high-powered shot if the mechanism is well-crafted and highly strung.

Gas-Piston

The gas-piston air rifle uses a gas-filled piston that compresses when the break barrel is cocked. The gas’s compression holds energy, which, when released by pulling the trigger, forces the pellet through the rifle’s barrel and out the end at high velocity. The gas-piston break barrel has the potential to produce a lot of power, and it doesn’t suffer from some of the down-flaws of its spring-powered cousin, such as spring fatigue.

Spring-Powered

A spring-powered air rifle uses a spring that is compressed when the barrel is broken. Once the spring is cocked under tension, the trigger is pulled to release the spring and fire the pellet. The spring-powered mechanism is one of the older charge designs that you are likely to find in a break barrel air rifle.

Spring rifles have the potential of producing immense power. However, they do fall victim to spring fatigue and cannot be cocked for long periods.

To find out more about the different air rifle types, as well as the pros and cons of the spring and gas-piston air rifle, check out “Air Rifle 101” and “What is a Break Barrel Air Rifle”.

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