Magpul has been releasing a wide variety of products to the market recently. These range from gloves to stocks and commercial fire control systems. The Magpul & Maztech X4 system wants to bring a fire control system to the commercial market without the high price normally attached to the system.
Optics company Vortex recently received a contract for their fire-control system as part of the Next Generation Squad Weapon contest. These optics are extremely expensive and require a rather large military contract to obtain. Magpul wants to avoid that high price and offer the NX4 system to police and civilian markets at an affordable price point. Although, Magpul has not released that price point.
What’s a fire-control unit?
A fire control system (or unit) is a fancy way to say “scope.” These state-of-the-art optics are blending computers and rifles to provide optics that increase accuracy, reduce the time it takes to get on target, and provide features like range finders, atmospheric sensors, and more. The Vortex model promises to bring a 1-8X series optic that can act as both a competent optic in close quarters combat and a designated marksman’s optic.
Magpul’s new fire control unit is a little different. It’s aimed at and tailored for the commercial market.
The X4 – A system for the everyday user
The X4 system from Magpul and Maztech currently consists of two components. According to Magpul, this is only the beginning.
The Maztech X4 Fire Control System isn’t an optic by itself. Instead, it attaches to your standard LPVO and feeds the information through your optic. This adds bulk but costs cost and allows you to use your favorite optic and a fire-control system.
The X4 FCS promises to provide an accurate range finder, as well as ballistic data. The combination of the two will provide accurate drop and aiming points at different ranges. This will make it extremely easy to provide rapid and accurate shots on target.
The system’s promotional shows the implementation of what appears to be a compass. The compass provides both a general direction and a direction in degrees. The X4 can be fed data from other devices, and this includes a round counter that can be implemented into your weapon as well.
Better yet, other people can be looped into your display. The information the user is fed can be fed to multiple people. For police use, I can see a ton of reasons why systems like this will increase communication.
The first is a combination of a Magpul grip and PMAG Gen 3 that will provide the user with a round counter. The grip and magazine will interact in both powered and non-powered means to provide an accurate ammo count to the user. This information can be sent to a variety of sources, including the user’s optic, as well as other connected devices (I’d assume integration with Android and iOS systems).
This can allow a command or support element to monitor the ammo counts of users and allow the user to maintain situational awareness regarding the ammo in their magazine. Some of the gizmos Magpul’s shown seem to have screens, and I’d imagine they’d connect to this system. Additionally, Magpul advised interaction with electronic glasses and goggles. Google Glass might finally be useful.
The ammo counter isn’t a one-trick pony. It will be capable of associating different ammo types with different magazines. This will feed into ballistic calculations done via the N4 system. Rifles like the LVAW can use super and subsonic ammunition, and each has a ballistic profile. Imagine being able to swap mags and have your ballistic information swap on your optic.
The implementation of these devices seems to be pushing the capabilities of the individual soldier forward. While this system is aimed at the commercial market, it’s entirely possible that military forces could adopt similar off-the-shelf technology. The Vortex may satisfy the Army, but the Magpul and Maztech could arm the smaller Marine Corps with a more affordable FCS that could make use of the Marine Corp’s new VCOGs.
Regardless I can’t wait to get my hands on the system and see how it evolves and how the commercial market can make use of it. What do you think? Let us know below.