(Thank you SoulScribe for the great banners!)
Echo1 is one of the most common starter gun brands for any player looking to get serious in airsoft. I started with an echo1, I recently sold it a few months ago, it was never upgraded, but wasn't too out-performed on the battlefield.
The range on a standard Echo1 is comparable to any stock gun out there. They can shoot around 125-150 accurately, but once you go beyond those 140-150ft your chance of hitting anything are very slim.
The external quality the more recent echo1 guns are great, they are sturdy and only the older models seem to have any bend in them. They have recently been releasing full metal guns, I haven't had a chance to test them out, but I'm sure they are fine. (Not VA, I'm not going to classify VA as Echo1 for the sake of reviewing Echo1.)
The gearbox of the Echo1 guns are somewhat messy. The gearbox shells themselves are around par compared to most other AEG companies, the gear sets aren't the best, and neither are their pistons. The piston is made of a cheap plastic. I've never had any serious problems with Echo1 guns before, they will last you if you are careful with them, but I wouldn't suggest dropping it more than once.
Also, the barrel and hopup need to be replaced, barrels in echo1 guns aren't that great, and neither are their hopups, you can make your gun perform a lot better if you replace those two things.
I'm going to leave the rest of this review up to you guys, I don't have much experience with echo1, despite owning two over my airsoft career, I wasn't able to tell back in those days what a good motor from a bad motor was.
*Need someone to write STAR/Ares and ICS, I have had limited experience with those two.