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How to choose a Beginner Tattoo Machine?

7 Starter Kits


You have entire folders of your own drawings at home, the works of recognized tattooists they excite you more than a double espresso, and you look at your own cat as a totem animal from Mayan Indians tattoos. But the most important thing is your hands, if they itch so much that even in a dream you hold DRAGONFLY X2 and do black work on your own grandmother, then the time has come. It's time to buy it, the first one you will remember forever.

And as soon as you mature, at that very moment chaos begins in your head: temptations, doubts and torments of choice dance in your thoughts an endless tarantella.

Take a tattoo machine to choose the beginner kit?

Here are the main questions:

Should you buy the cheapest Chinese machine in AliExpress?
What if I give my last money for an expensive machine and it doesn't fit?
Which machine is suitable for contour, shading and shading at the same time?
I should buy starter kits?
So anyway:rotor or induction?
Since everyone's hands and needs are different, a beginner tattoo machine will need to be chosen according to various parameters. Weigh the pros and cons and take what can work right now.


1 DRAGONFLY X2 Tattoo Machine
1 DRAGONFLY X2 Tattoo Machine

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To begin with, we will express two radically opposite views of the tattoo artists venerable on which tattoo machine to take for a beginner. More precisely, there are a billion of these opinions, but we will express the two most polar:

Opinion one: you need to buy the best and most expensive on the market today. Even if for the sake of this you have to pawn all the gadgets and get loans. Take for example SpektraXion and I don't know the pain. It is a very accurate professional instrument. He is personable, handsome, professional, which will add confidence to your own eyes. And even if you're not very good as a teacher yet, "this is going to help you."

Second opinion: if the hands are skillful, tattoos can even be done with a bamboo stick, even with a needle without a machine. And the hype for expensive starter kits from the big builders, or when CheyennePen buys the first machine, this is all a show and a waste of money.

As a general rule, this is what those whose development in the tattoo stopped at a standstill, that is, the absence of any progress played a cruel joke on the person. At the same time, this guy really thinks they grow up, get cool tattoos, and can give novice masters advice. Stay tuned, see if that person is really doing something worthwhile. As a general rule, these people draw poorly and do not engage in skill development.

There are some tattoo artists that God endowed with tenacious grip and amazing fine motor skills.

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Since childhood, they masterfully possess any drawing tool and they can do it beautifully, even being in the back of an old ZIL, shaking along the rural roads of central Russia. But there are really few such people.

Therefore, if you are still unsure of the firmness of your hand, choose something in between.

Of course, you can spend a lot of time and finally learn to get it right with the Cheaper "china". After that, you can do anything with a good machine.

But here are several drawbacks:

When buying something shiny for 8uss with AliExpres, you are not immune to surprises. In fact, you will always know that you have a "weak link" on your hands., which means that you can hardly get a "pure thrill" from creativity. Because there will be problems with it, the only question is when.

Stay in the middle. And this is around 56 uss - 224 uss. There are inexpensive machines available from manufacturers, for example TattooMarket Brothers (63 uss), FoxTattoo (91 uss) and DeuceMachines (98 uss - 133 uss). Among the rotating machines, a good option is Skinductor "Vertigopromo" (182 uss).

It is worth remembering that in the case of induction, you should immediately take a combo: a eyeliner and a shader. That is, the budget is automatically doubled. Don't forget about other consumables as well.

But more on that later.

2 Skinductor Vertigo Tattoo Machine
2 Skinductor Vertigo Tattoo Machine

Which machine is suitable for contour, shading and shading at the same time?

A machine universal it is a very relative term.

Our rotary machines are considered universal, but lose in art and price.

A professional will be able to reconfigure a induction machine To suit your needs, for beginners this option will be more difficult. But if you really want to become tattooist, starts with induction.

And while we understand how much you want it, we highly recommend that buy several machines that meet your needs (we are talking about induction machines).

Liner - contour tattoo machine. Short hard hit, quick return, quick skin penetration. The paint does not have time to fade under the skin and is laid in an evenly outlined line. Trying to paint with an eyeliner can break down the skin. Therefore, after healing, a scar is formed.


shader It is a painting and tattoo machine. It works more slowly, the skin is less traumatized. Allows you to achieve tight plugging and high-quality paint. If you draw an outline on it, it will turn out to be bold and vague.

4 Red Jons V2 Shader Tattoo Machine
4 Red Jons V2 Shader Tattoo Machine

If you have decided on a tattoo machine, the next step is the needles. There is nothing worse than a good machine with a bad needle. Choose needles of well-known brands and of exclusively tested quality, which are They sell in trusted stores.

5 Example of a Tattooist making a tattoo with a machine
5 Example of a Tattooist making a tattoo with a machine

For example, at Tattoomarket you will always find an inexpensive line of needles Excalibur or needles kwadron premium. When considering cartridges, don't take junk brands like Elite, FYT and modules unknown to you, pay attention to membrane cartridges Inox Prime or the new Kwadron cartridges and of course Cheyenne.

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They greatly simplify the work of the assistant and are comfortable to use. But even here you have to be careful. Some cartridges are suitable for fine lines and detail work, while others are suitable for extensive paint jobs. And here it is also important to use them together with the machine for its intended purpose. Also pay attention to the technical characteristics of the machine. Not all work with certain cartridges.  

6 Kwadron Cartridges
6 Kwadron Cartridges

Starter kits. Pros and cons

When choosing a tattoo machine, you probably already know that alone is not enough. 

Here is the basic set:

1. Rotary or induction machine.

2. Needles (or cartridges).

3. Power supply unit.

4. Cord clip.

5. Pedal.

6. 2 types of elastic bands: bandages and sticks (if they are not cartridges).

7. Headlines.

8. Spouts-showers (if you don't have a modular system)

9. Inks.

You may also need transfer paper, petroleum jelly, and a host of all kinds of consumables.  

Therefore, calculate your budget with care so that the rest of the consumables are not collected from Chinese consumer goods. This will completely devalue the purchase of an expensive instrument.  

7 Starter Kits
7 Starter Kits

Starter kits they usually differ from independent selection in that there will necessarily be something superfluous and completely unnecessary, a combination of what you really did not want. The prices of the sets vary from 23 uss. on Ali (categorically not recommended) up to 1260 uss. and more, there is no limit to the imagination.

In general, buying a kit is the shortest route. It all depends on your tasks, but this is definitely an option for those who do not want to strain and delve into the essence.

And the bottom line is that by assembling your set yourself, understand the relationship between individual elements and see the big picture.

Yes, this path is a bit longer, but the art of tattoos, in principle, is not an occupation for those in a hurry.

If you don't have time to solve it and you don't want to, take the game. But in this case, choose between manufacturers Reliable global or proven national builders. 

Rotor or induction?

8 Ego Rotary POLYGON tattoo machine
8 Ego Rotary POLYGON tattoo machine

Before moving on to the parameters of the machines, let's touch the parameters of the person concerned. If you are a slim young man or a gentle girl with a size XXS, then it is premature to think of machines heavy and powerful, but worth it.

First, look at your brush. If your glove size is XS-S, stop at a machine with a 16-22mm holder; if your size is ML, please try 18-26mm; Well, if you have L-XL, take what suits you!

If you are in the tattoo world, where there is a whole cult of worship of tattoo machines, where they are admired and enjoy the comparison of characteristics, this is good. But if at the same time you longed for a very beautiful and sophisticated, but very heavy steampunk car, then try to analyze this question in a more practical way, and probably gain experience. Until you get used to its weight, you will lose all the pleasure of the process. Your arm will ache and pull on your back.

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Try to idle the car, feel its vibration, calculate how comfortable it will be to work with it. The wrong instrument produces more exclamations of despair than admiration.


Now half the world works with rotors. It's stylish and convenient, but still, they're pretty slow. You probably don't want to spend 3 hours doing something that can be done in an hour with induction machines (unless you have fast, mobile hands).

Weight :

Induction machines are heavier than rotary machines. For example, VladBlad himself produces very heavy and very powerful cars. Someone who fits perfectly, but no one can hold them in their hands.


There are very powerful but lightweight induction machines made from special alloys. But light metal sometimes doesn't balance vibration. An experienced craftsman will easily draw lines, and the hand A beginner's can vibrate up to the elbow. Therefore, you must compensate for the weight of the machine with a support that dampens vibrations and keeps the joints alive.


The induction machine emits a characteristic hum, in contrast to the silent rotor. Some people find it annoying. This buzz does not affect the quality of the tattoo on any score.


Induction machines are famous for their color density. Also, no rotor will make contours as "loud" as induction.

In general, there is an opinion that induction is better for beginners, and the rotor is more suitable for those who have been working for more than a year. With all of the above in mind, make the decision yourself. And if, nevertheless, you want a rotor, then, in principle, with it you will close all your questions to a minimum. For good money.

By choosing induction machines, you pay tribute to beauty and style. In this case, you will need two carriages: a liner for the middle outline and a shader for a standard fill. And if we go further, one more liner for thin contours and another shader for large hatches. Total: four. If there is also a rotor, then five. Hard, huh?

9 Professional eyeliner for tattoo machine by Stas Gromov
9 Professional eyeliner for tattoo machine by Stas Gromov

Let's summarize

First, you should never skimp on equipment. It is not only your responsibility, but also the client's body. Also, it is not profitable. For example, having bought an expensive car and a cheap block and clip-cord for it, you will not open up all the possibilities of the car, which means that the expenses were wasted. The same goes for needles and paints.

Second, the machine is an intimate subject, you need to find your own. And this is a trial and error route.

Third, start working with what is, but never stop. Explore, experiment, find your own. Sooner or later, you will definitely become a master.

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