Here's a paint sprayer wish list: it shouldn't involve a separate compressor, and it should also have roller and trimwork attachments. Because pouring and diluting paint is a big hassle, you should be able to stick the paint can right in the machine. You shouldn't have to carry the paint supply, either; it should be on ground-level. Oh, and all of this should be cheap.
Paint Sprayer Wish List (Pretty Much) Fulfilled
That's what you get with the Ryobi Duet Power Paint System, which is called a system for good reason.
The Ryobi Duet has three components: sprayer, trimwork attachment, and roller attachment.
If you're not familiar with these kinds of self-feeding painters, they push paint through flexible tubes to your roller or trim attachment. No back-and-forth between your work area and the paint tray or bucket. If this seems lazy, you obviously haven't done much painting before. Loading up the roller or brush burns up a lot of time and does nothing to improve the quality of your work. Paint feeding systems let you roll, brush, edge, or spray without interruption.
The Size of a Vacuum - But Even Smaller and Smarter
The Ryobi Duet takes up about as much floor space as a vacuum, so you can easily store it. The attachment handles clip neatly away on the back of the Duet.
The roller at first looks like it's going to be another proprietary implement that needs to be ordered directly from the manufacturer. But according to the Duet instructions: "[t]he paint roller accepts any 9 in.
roller, up to 1/4 nap."
"This Machine Will Accept...a One Gallon Paint Can..."
What's the worst part about paint sprayers and roller systems? Pouring the paint into special containers and diluting it. But with the Ryobi Duet, pop off the lid of your paint can and stick the whole thing right in. No mixing, no dilution, no pouring, no mess.
Once you're finished spraying or painting, consider this: you've got a 12-foot long tube full of paint. Does this mean you'll have to clean out the tubes? No! Just hit the Reverse button, and the paint sucks back into the can.
Oh wait, but you've still got paint-caked tubes, right? You'll probably have to pull them out and wash them by hand? Nope. Insert a container (included) of warm water and run it on Forward until clean. That's that.
Two people can use the Duet at once (roller + trim attachment; the paint sprayer cannot be used in conjunction with any other device). The system is relatively quiet and pushes paint at a steady flow.
Two minor criticisms can be made. First, it's sometimes possible to believe that the attachment is snapped on even though it isn't. Second, the trigger on the attachment tools is a little too hard to depress and keep depressed.
Otherwise, the Ryobi Duet Power Paint System is an amazingly inventive paint system that thinks outside the box, and at a very reasonable price. You'll have almost zero learning curve, and should be up and painting in 30 minutes. Not only that, but you'll probably cut your total painting time by at least 50%.