10 Best Airbrush Compressor Reviews and Alternatives

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I am an art enthusiast who loves many aspects of art with airbrushing being no exception, so I am always looking to find the best airbrush compressor. After scouring online resources and reviews, you can trust that I’ve found 10 of the best ones. Here are my top 4 picks. My best overall which is NO-Name Brand by Spraygunner is out of stock due to high demand but you can check the link to see if they are back in stock.

Best Overall

No-Name Brand by Spraygunner

Don’t let the name fool you because this is a highly popular airbrush compressor.

Best Budget

Master Cool Runner II

Two fan cooling systems for a longer running time without overheating.

Runner Up

Badger Aspire Pro TC-910

Quiet and lightweight with automatic shut-off and thermal overload protection.


Iwata-Medea Studio Series

Powerful twin pumps with 2 pressure regulators for 2 separate workstations.

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10 Best Airbrush Compressors Review Image

I researched 10 of the best airbrush compressors and found the Spraygunner model to be the best all-around choice for adjustable PSI, performance, durability, and price. (currently out of stock but check the link)  

The Spraygunner is a jack of all trades that does not compromise volume, customizability, or reliability. It has a fair price and even comes with a one-year warranty just in case you aren’t completely satisfied. 

Even though this model is the best airbrush compressor for me, the world of hobby airbrushing is full of diverse needs.

My Top 10 List of Best Airbrush Compressors

For your convenience here is a quick list of the airbrush compressors. Read the reviews below for more details.

  1. NO-Name Brand by Spraygunner
  2. Master Airbrush 1/5 HP Cool Runner II Dual Fan Air Compressor Kit Model TC-320
  3. Badger Air-Brush Co. TC910 Aspire Pro Compressor
  4. Iwata-Medea Studio Series Power Jet Pro Double Piston Air Compressor
  5. Master Airbrush Model TC-40T
  6. California Air Tools 2010A Ultra Quiet
  7. Master Airbrush Model TC-77
  8. Paasche Airbrush D3000R
  9. Master Model C16-B – Black Mini Airbrush Air Compressor
  10. Timbertech Upgraded Airbrush Single-Piston Oil-Free Mini Compressor ABPST08

Best Airbrush Compressor reviews for 2022

Many artists shop for the quietest airbrush compressor or models with certain amenities like adjustable nozzles and oil-free designs, so I compiled a list of the ten best machines for a variety of different qualities.

1. NO-Name Brand by Spraygunner

Best Airbrush Compressor Overall

  • Price: $120 – $150
  • Air capacity: 3 liters
  • Airflow: 20–23 liters per minute
  • Air pressure: 100 PSI 
  • Noise level: 47 dB

The NO-Name is a piston-style airbrush compressor that works with a generous variety of brushes. Its hose fits any brush up to a 0.7mm nozzle size. It comes with standard amenities like a pressure gauge, carrying handle, and a braided hose. The six-foot power cable allows you to set up your workstation almost anywhere.

This machine has a 1/6th horsepower motor in contrast to many models that have 1/5th HP motors. While that might seem like a downgrade, it isn’t, since an airbrush compressor’s power is determined by its maximum pressure rather than its motor. A lower power motor is preferable for reducing noise and keeping your brush steady as you paint. 

This model has a handy air pressure adjustment nozzle with an impressive range of up to 100 PSI, making this compressor an excellent choice for meticulous artists. The design is also incredibly lightweight and easy to tote, so you can take it with you on the go. 

Although it is the best model overall, it does have a few downsides. While the pressure is great, the airflow is not as generous as in other models. Another problem is that even though the quality is superb, this machine is only insured with a one-year warranty. 

Altogether, this is a high-quality machine in look, feel, and function. Coupled with a fair price, it is a rock-solid choice for any airbrush user.

2. Master Airbrush 1/5 HP Cool Runner II Dual Fan Air Compressor Kit Model TC-320

Best Budget Airbrush

  • Price: $80 – $100
  • Air capacity: 3 liters
  • Airflow: Up to 25 liters per minute
  • Air pressure: 57 PSI 
  • Noise level: 47 dB

The TC-320 may be a budget pick, but that does not mean it lacks usable features. The model is a tankless single-piston design with cooling fans to prevent overheating. The hose connector is 1/4th inches, so you may need an adapter for it to fit your airbrush. Like other models, this one includes a built-in pressure gauge and carrying handle. 

The Cool Runner II has better airflow than other entries on this list. However, keep in mind that airflow and pressure tend to be inversely proportional. If airflows too freely, it isn’t building enough pressure. This machine can only produce a maximum pressure of about 57 PSI, so it isn’t especially powerful. 

Between the higher horsepower and the cooling fans, this airbrush compressor can run for a very long time without heating up too much. The downside is that it produces a lot of extra noise even if the compressor itself only measures 47 decibels. It also makes your airbrush vibrate a fair bit more than other models, which is bad for precision. 

The paint finish and coating on the machine itself are a bit sloppy and inconsistent. The performance is also a bit poor and variable. But like most budget picks, price is the selling point of the TC-320. It comes with a five-year satisfaction guarantee, meaning that you can get a refund or replacement if your airbrush compressor is faulty.

3. Badger Air-Brush Co. TC910 Aspire Pro Compressor

Best Runner Up

  • Price: $300 – $500
  • Air capacity: 3 liters
  • Airflow: 20–23 liters per minute
  • Air pressure: 57 PSI 
  • Noise level: 47 dB

The TC910 Aspire Pro is best described as a heavy-duty airbrush compressor. It’s a diaphragm-type model, which is less powerful than a piston-type design. However, its protective coating and thermal regulation work together to make a strong, durable machine that sustains. It requires no lubrication or maintenance and comes with internal moisture resistance. 

It has a carrying handle and its box-shaped design is easy to tote and store. Unfortunately, its bulky body weighs over eighteen pounds, so it isn’t as portable as other choices. This airbrush compressor does feature a pressure gauge and airbrush holders. 

The pressure is respectable, although not superior. Its adjustable airflow nozzles accommodate registers of up to 4 bars. 

The TC910’s most notable selling point is its durability. It can run for nearly four hours before it begins to get hot and has a hard shell that protects it from accidental damage. 

However, other than its protection, it does not have a lot of qualities that justify its high price. If you’re experimenting with airbrushing, you may want to try a cheaper model.

4. Iwata-Medea Studio Series Power Jet Pro Double Piston Air Compressor

Best for Professionals

  • Price: $450 – $550
  • Air capacity: 2 liters
  • Airflow: Up to 25 liters per minute
  • Air pressure: 70 PSI 
  • Noise level: 52 dB

The Iwata-Medea Power Jet Pro is a unique air compression device that combines two studio workstations in one machine. It has a robust twin-piston design and two separate airflow regulators, allowing two artists to work simultaneously. The package comes with an air hose and a large adapter selection that works for almost every airbrush. 

This machine can reach a substantial 70 PSI of pressure at a high airflow, making it a great air compressor for painting. Each side of the compressor has a moisture filter, air filter, and pressure gauge. Considering it bundles two machines into one, its 52-decibel volume is tolerable.

Even the high price is a reasonable investment for your workplace or studio. The machine is tough at 22 pounds and is engineered durably, so it will get many years of use. 

If you’re a solo artist or hobbyist, though, this machine probably isn’t for you. It has a lot of value as a two-in-one, but if you’re looking for a one-person airbrush compressor, many cheaper options are available.

5. Master Airbrush Model TC-40T

Best for Beginners

  • Price: $125 – $180
  • Air capacity: 3 liters
  • Airflow: Up to 23 liters per minute
  • Air pressure: 57 PSI 
  • Noise level: 47 dB

The Master Airbrush TC-40T is a middle-ground choice in terms of price, power, and capability. However, it’s a great pick for beginners who are looking for a fair-priced machine with respectable statistics. It’s a single-piston compressor with cooling fans that allow it to run for a long time. The package comes with a six-foot air hose with a 1/8th inch connector.

Despite having internal cooling fans, this machine is quiet. I found that it often runs below the listed 47 decibels. It’s a small airbrush compressor, only weighing about eleven pounds. It won’t cause a racket when you use it, and it keeps the pressure consistent as you brush.

The unfortunate downside of this machine is that the threaded connector is faulty. It’s too large for most airbrushes, meaning you have to do some extra shopping to find the right adapters. This compressor uses brass pipe fittings instead of NPT (national pipe threads), but once you have the proper equipment it should work reliably. 

The adapter issue is the only problem preventing this model from being top-tier, but it still stands as an excellent beginner option. It comes with a five-year warranty on top of an already fair price, so you can return it if it does not suit your airbrushing style.

6. California Air Tools 2010A Ultra Quiet

Best Quiet Air Compressor

  • Price: $125 – $250
  • Air capacity: 7.5 liters
  • Airflow: Up to 87 liters per minute
  • Air pressure: 120 PSI 
  • Noise level: 60 dB

You may notice that many of this machine’s stat values are high above the others, but that is because this model is an industrial heavyweight air compressor. These types have powerful motors, large air tanks, and high-pressure systems. It has a two-horsepower motor and weighs 35 pounds. All of these factors give this machine a combined life cycle of over 3,000 hours. 

While 60 decibels is considerably higher than other models on this list, among other compressors in its class, it is one of the quietest. Few other industrial air compressors can reach 120 PSI without exceeding the volume of a regular conversation. 

Industrial models like the CAT 2010A are for more than just airbrushing. However, it may seem a bit excessive if you aren’t a frequent user. It also comes with a 1/4th inch connector, which you’ll need an adapter for if you plan to hook up an airbrush. If you’re looking for a heavy-duty machine, this is one of the best choices.

7. Master Airbrush Model TC-77

Best Portable Airbrush Compressor

  • Price: $40 – $120
  • Air capacity: 0.3 liters
  • Airflow: Up to 18 liters per minute
  • Air pressure: 57 PSI 
  • Noise level: 47 dB

The TC-77 is designed to be a small, portable compressor for lightweight airbrushing needs. It only weighs four pounds, making it one of the lightest models on the market. It has a miniature internal tank and a side wall vent for cooling. It has a shape similar to a toolbox with a handle for easy toting and storage.

Enabling such a lightweight design means sacrificing power. This machine does not carry much air or have great airflow, and the pressure rarely reaches its maximum air pressure of 57 PSI. However, this compressor is still a top choice for on-the-go jobs like tattoos or nail work. It comes with a two-year warranty just in case you decide to return it for a more powerful model.

8. Paasche Airbrush D3000R

Best Oilless Airbrush Compressor

  • Price: $100 – $180
  • Air capacity: 2.8 liters
  • Airflow: About 7 liters per minute
  • Air pressure: 40 PSI 
  • Noise level: 47 dB

The D3000R has many of the amenities of the other compressors, including hose fittings, adapters, and pressure gauges. However, it is an oil-free design with moisture regulators and traps to drain any unwanted water and lubricant from inside. This machine will continue to run consistently due to its self-maintenance work.

It’s portable and easy to carry, weighing 13 pounds. Despite advertisements on Amazon saying it has a 1/5th HP engine, it has a 1/8th engine, which is why its maximum PSI is only 40. Still, for a largely portable airbrush compressor, it has a generous air capacity of 3/4th gallon. It’s a solid, fair-priced, well-maintaining machine for jobs that don’t need high-pressure levels.

9. Master Model C16-B – Black Mini Airbrush Air Compressor

Best Mini Compressor

  • Price: $50 – $70
  • Air capacity: 2.8 liters
  • Airflow: About 7 liters per minute
  • Air pressure: 40 PSI 
  • Noise level: 47 dB

This miniature compressor is best suited for model making on the go. With low pressure and no air tank, this model is best for short uses such as airbrushing models or nails. Portability is its starkest advantage, weighing under two pounds. It has an automatic shutoff feature to help prevent overheating. 

This airbrush compressor is an especially decent choice for any model-makers who want to try airbrushing without making a big investment. It has some convenient features but struggles to work with any substance besides paint. I suggest giving this machine a try if you want a miniature compressor and upgrading later if you want more power.

10. Timbertech Upgraded Airbrush Single-Piston Oil-Free Mini Compressor ABPST08

Best Under $100

  • Price: $80 – $100
  • Air capacity: 3 liters
  • Airflow: 20–23 liters per minute
  • Air pressure: 58 PSI 
  • Noise level: 47 dB

The Timbertech mini compressor has the stats of a normal machine in a non-bulky form. It also comes with standard amenities like a moisture trap, a air pressure gauge, and a cooling fan. An interesting design choice with the Timbertech is its rubber feet that reduce friction and noise while running. 

While it does not have the most impressive array of stats on this list, it is an exceptional value for its price. It will adequately work for any cake-decorating, model-making, or airbrushing needs. Unfortunately, it isn’t insured with a warranty, but Timbertech customer service helps to make every purchase more convenient.

Best Airbrush Compressor Alternatives

Best airbrush compressor alternatives

A handful of machines are functional substitutes for an air compressor, especially if you don’t need all of the bells and whistles. Here are three of the best alternatives for airbrush compressors on the market.

Alternative 1 – Propellant – Testors 8822ES Ozone Safe Propellant for Airbrushes

Propellant uses a threaded connector to hook up to an airbrush. It provides a consistent stream of air pressure, but it isn’t infinite, unlike a compressor. Still, propellant cans are considerably cheap, making them a great alternative if you aren’t looking to invest in an air compressor. 

The Testors 8822ES is ozone-safe and noiseless. It has enough propellant for a few small projects or around three or four hours. 

Alternative 2 – Air Tank – Industrial Air IT20ASME 20 Gallon

The IT20ASME is a 175 PSI industrial air tank. Air tanks are similar to propellant cans but are refillable with a compressor. This model contains 20 gallons of air and works both vertically and horizontally. The base price is around $300. A full tank will accommodate hundreds of airbrushing hours. 

An air tank is an excellent alternative if you need compressed air for more than just airbrushing, such as if you work in an auto shop. Tanks are more versatile than airbrush compressors, but they work well in conjunction. If your place of work has a compressor, you can take advantage by filling your air tank as you need.

Alternative 3 – Rechargeable Cordless Airbrush Kit – LATITOP Upgraded Airbrush Kit, Portable Auto Mini Cordless Air Brush with Mini Compressor

The LATITOP brush is a battery-powered airbrush that generates spraying pressure. The battery runs for about an hour at a time and takes an hour to charge. The kit can reach an air pressure of up to about 20 PSI and airflow of about seven liters per minute.

The advantage of this type of device is that you don’t have to mess around with loud machines, tangling hoses, or heavy equipment. The downside is that it is limited in how powerful it can spray and how long. In addition, you can’t choose your favorite brush or other accessories. $56 is still a reasonable price for this nearly infinitely-sustaining airbrush kit.

Guide to Buying The Best Airbrush Compressor for your Needs

What should you prioritize when shopping for an airbrush compressor? There are many factors to consider.

The most critical factor is the work that you want the compressor to perform. 

Do you need a compressor that can consistently deliver long hours of high-air pressure work? Or a mobile machine for quick, light jobs? Price and power tend to go hand-in-hand, so select a compressor that suits your performance needs and budget.

Consider whether you’re shopping for a whole studio, a few airbrushers, or just yourself. Many compressors are designed to accommodate several people at once. 

Also, think about where you airbrush. If you do public work, you might want a quieter machine. If you work from home, you might want a small airbrush compressor that stores easily. 

What is probably the most important criterion is the compressor’s compatibility with your preferred airbrush. 

Not all machines have the same fittings and connectors, so you might need to purchase an adapter. It’s safe to assume that a machine with the same brand as your airbrush won’t have any compatibility issues.


Here are some of our answers to frequently asked questions.

How do I choose an Airbrush Compressor?

My suggestion is to carefully study reviews of the brand and product you’re interested in. While some customers experience fluke issues, the repetition of a problem usually points out a flaw in the product.

Choose an airbrush compressor that suits your needs for power, performance, durability, and price. Where available, I also highly suggest a machine with a warranty.

What PSI is Best for Airbrushing?

Both high and low pressures have pros and cons for airbrushing. Less pressure creates less waste, but high air pressure reduces clogs and atomization. 

It may be best to pick a compressor that can start with a 10 PSI air flow capacity. If you need to turn the air pressure up after painting with 10, do so until you find your preferred setting.

Why are airbrush compressors so expensive?

Airbrush compressors are expensive for many reasons. First, they contain piston motors, which are pricey to produce. Second, they are often built to last, employing internal cooling tech and durable exteriors. 

If you shop intelligently for the best machine for you, you will only have to pay that price once or twice.

Are Master Airbrush Compressors good?

Master Airbrush is a brand best known for being economical. The machines are of fair quality, but they aren’t industrial-grade. 

A Master Airbrush product will last a long time, but you can find many other brands offering higher power and better performance for a higher price.

What paints are best for airbrushing?

Paint, ink, and dye all work effectively in airbrushing. In general, the finer the materials in the brush cup, the better the brush will perform. Coagulated, thick paints will result in clogs and atomization on your canvas or model. 

While you can use acrylics and other common paints, there are tubes of paint sold for airbrushes with a perfect consistency for compressors.

My Choice For Best Air Compressor for Airbrushing

Out of all of the airbrush compressors I tested, the NO-Name by Spraygunner is simply the best value for the most common brush use cases. It has great stats, a fair price, a warranty, and is quality-tested, so each machine works as intended. 

However, there are many great devices on this list, so I encourage you to check them all out and find the best one for your hobby.
You can find each of these products on Amazon. You can also learn more about airbrushing and how to pick the best art products on our website.