The MantisX is, indeed, a small revolution. As a training tool, it focuses on the shooter’s control of the trigger and the firearm during the all-important milliseconds preceding and after the actual shot; the goal is to minimize the difference between the point of aim (POA) and the point of impact (POI).
Using super accurate gyroscopic and accelerometer sensors, coupled with a 4.0 Bluetooth communication channel, the patented MantisX device interfaces with an iOS or Android smartphone or tablet, using a continuously improved and free app.
The device itself is fastened to the firearm using a Picatinny rail interface; adapters are available for many guns that do not come with a rail, and interestingly enough, the sensibility of the MantisX is so high that mounting adapters are available for Olympic-class air pistols and rifles.
We would like to stress the fact that the MantisX does not substitute a certified instructor; instead, it can become a valuable tool as an additional training aid to improve the shooter’s accuracy in virtually every possible professional, shooting sports, and hunting scenario.
Fundamentally, the MantisX is based on the same concept of a classical correction target, normally used to check trigger and handgun control during live fire - it is however diminutive to describe it simply thus. Rather, this has been the starting point from which the MantisX was designed.
Thanks to the sensor platform, each shot is accurately measured, every micro-movement logged and stored, and the impressive amount of data is interpreted by the software to yield an evaluation of each shot; the MantisX stores the data and tracks our improvement.
MantisX firearms training system. Does it actually work?
What is interesting of the system is that it does not need to be pointed at an actual target – only the movements of the sensor platform are recorded and processed, therefore the system will analyze the fundamentals of trigger control and firearm grip, the basics of accurate shooting.
But... does the MantisX actually work? The short answer is yes - it does work, and it works well. The system is very accurate (maybe even too accurate...) and the feedback the app gives really help to correct gun manipulation, grip and trigger mistakes and noticeably improve accuracy.
Once the MantisX device has been charged using any USB wall charger or a PC port with the included MicroUSB cable, the user simply mounts it on the gun’s Picatinny rail and turns the device on pressing the small button on the bottom of the device.
Then, it pairs it with the app running on a iOS or Android smartphone, and calibrates the device placing it for a few seconds on a stable, flat surface.
A few moments more to select the type of firearm used, if we are going to train with live ammo or dry fire, the placement of the device on the gun and then, we’re ready to start our training session.
The device will track 300 milliseconds, from immediately preceding the trigger break to just after, and it does not matter to the system where we are aiming; in our opinion, it does however improve the training experience to check live fire target groups.
The MantisX can be used in any shooting scenario. From ISSF 50-meter pistol target shooting, all the way to IPSC dynamic shooting, the device is always able to process and provide useable information, correcting detected mistakes with easy to understand and no-nonsense feedback.
What we found is that it works best with handguns, obviously, but improvements can be observed also with rifles and shotguns.
Hunters could also benefit from the MantisX, thanks to the ability to monitor trigger control and rifle hold in dynamic situations, such as in shooting fast game or running target sports shooting.
Real-time feedback, real-time results through the app
The app is the heart of the system; the raw data collected by the sensor is processed and a host of information is presented to the shooter.
A single shot is not indicative; but, once a training session is completed, the app will build a database of the fired shots.
Each session is also stored, and the app tracks our improvements. Patterns can be revealed, small repetitive mistakes found and corrected; the data is presented in many different ways, through bar graphs, line charts, wheel charts, and for each shot it’s possible to visualize the actual movement before and after the shot.
This last screen is actually extremely interesting, as it gives an accurate tracking of where the muzzle was pointing before, during and after the shot.
Blue is for the movements before trigger pull, yellow is the trigger pull, the shot is shown with an “X” and red is where the muzzle went after the shot.
Our opinion is extremely positive; the MantisX is an excellent training aid, allowing even hardened and very experienced shooters to find little nags and habits that can be addressed with the system.
Last but not least, the MantisX firearms training system is presently sold online, directly from MantisX manufacturer Rolera LLC’s website, and sent anywhere in the world; the price is 149.99 US dollars / 123 euro (approx) plus shipping and Customs duty if the purchase is done overseas.