Gear Review: Ares Armor Effin A Tuneable Compensator

Some things that come across my desk are just downright nifty and appeal to my inner nerd. Things like the NSN stockless thingy, but without the possible issues. This one definitely falls into that category, and it’s definitely nifty. This, friends, is the Effin A compensator — a TUNEABLE compensator. How cool is that? . . .

Let me back up a second. When a gun goes off, especially one like an AR-15, the tendency is for the muzzle to rise a bit with each round. There’s also a significant amount of recoil coming straight back into your shoulder. That’s where a compensator comes in — its a device that fits on the end of your barrel and uses the escaping gasses to counteract the undesired effects of recoil. They come in all shapes and sizes, and usually you pick one that looks about right and keep trying until you get one that works just the way you want it. If only there were a way to tune your compensator to get it working the exact way you want, right?

The Effin A comes in a delightful case — a prescription bottle. It even has instructions written on the side:

Take for management of recoil symptoms. If symptoms exist, adjust as necessary. For severe cases, RE-EVALUATE technique!

That’s pretty damn funny right there, I don’t care who you are.

Inside the bottle they give you the comp, some set screws, and an instruction pamphlet. The idea is that you thread the comp onto your gun, and screw the set screws into the holes until the only ones uncovered are those in the direction that you want the gasses to vent. In other words, opposite the direction you want the muzzle to go.

You can create any crazy design you want, trying to get the right balance between recoil compensation and muzzle rise, and keep trying until you get it right. The designers say that once you have them set correctly to fire a couple mags through the gun and the residue should be enough to lock those suckers in there good and tight, no loctite required.

Does it work? All too well. I had the same experience that these YouTube reviewers did, but they did a better job showing it off. I eventually decided on a U-shaped hole pattern, starting with the side ports open and ending with the top ports as you move forward. Your mileage may vary, and thankfully you can fiddle until you get it just right.

I really liked this product. They gave me the brand new 7.62 version to try, but it also comes in 5.56 for your AR-15 enjoyment. It profoundly appeals to my inner nerd, wanting to fiddle with things and fine tune them until you get it just right.

Specifications: Effin A Compensator

MSRP: $100

Ratings (out of five)

Feel & Function * * * * *
This really feels like a finely machined product. There are no rough edges — everything is smooth and perfect. Just like it should be.

Performance * * * * *
If anything, this compensator OVER performs.

Overall Rating * * * * *
Not only does this compensator do the job, it does it well. The average shooter now has the ability to personalize their compensator to exactly match their gun’s specific recoil, and make it perform exactly how they want. Its downright perfect. AND, it meets the specs for 3-gun competitions!