Starfield best reactors – which reactor you should buy for your ship class

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The Starfield best reactors are key to everything you do with your ship. Whether you’re rocking some hugely powerful weapons or a massive ship for hauling cargo, all things lead back to your reactor, and if you don’t have one of the best ones available, then you’re never going to get the best out of your ship.

If you’re just getting started with the game, you’ll want to check out our Starfield tips and tricks for some handy advice to help you out on your playthrough. And if you’re wondering what missions you should be doing, our Starfield quest list will give you some ideas of where to start, so you can start exploring some of the secrets on offer, like the Starfield Echoes of the Past cache. With that, let’s take a look at the best Starfield reactors.

Best Starfield reactors: A ship flying through space with the reactor UI in the bottom left.
Image captured by VideoGamer

How do reactors work in Starfield?

Your reactor is the power source of your ship, with it determining the power of your engines, weapons, shields, and grav drive. The more powerful your reactor is, the more power you can put into each module of your ship, increasing their capabilities. When in flight, your reactor power is shown in the bottom left corner of your screen, where you can allocate bars of power between the different modules.

This is important because you need a reactor capable of providing enough power to your other modules. If you have three C-Class weapons that require a lot of power, but only have an A-Class reactor, you will only be able to use a fraction of each weapon’s power, making them effectively no better than a much cheaper A-Class weapon. Additionally, better reactors can power better grav drives, letting you travel much further when grav jumping.

Alex’s Advice

When upgrading your ship, you should always upgrade your reactor first. There’s no point having a top-of-the-line ship module if you don’t have a reactor powerful enough to get the most out of it.

Naturally, higher-class reactors also require a higher Piloting rank and Starship Design rank depending on what class you want to use. Having a reactor capable of powering all your systems is a massive help if you’re in a pinch, and could be the difference between life and death during combat. It’s the most essential module on your ship, so you need to make sure you’ve got the best one.

Starfield best reactors

The best Starfield reactors are:

  • 360T Stellarator Reactor (A-Class)
  • Tokamak X-120S Reactor (A-Class)
  • Z-Machine 3000 Reactor (B-Class)
  • 104DS Mag Inertial Flow Reactor (B-Class)
  • SF40 Sheared Flow Reactor (C-Class)
  • Pinch 8Z Reactor (C-Class)
  • Fusor DC401 Reactor (C-Class)
Best Starfield reactors: The 360T Stellarator Reactor in the ship builder.
Image captured by VideoGamer

360T Stellarator (A-Class)

Power Generated20
Reactor Health32

Near the start of the game, with not many credits and no skill points in the Piloting or Starship Design skills, your options when it comes to ship modules are fairly limited. But the 360T Stellarator is a surprisingly good reactor for its price. It provides the highest power of any A-Class reactor, as well as higher health and repair rate than its counterparts, and you can purchase it for less than 18000 credits. Stick this on your ship as soon as you can, and you will be covered through the early-game, and potentially through the mid-game, too.

Tokamak X-120S (A-Class)

Power Generated28
Reactor Health30
RequirementsStarship Design (Rank 4)

While Starship Design Rank 4 may be quite a high requirement for a Class-A reactor, that can be explained by the stats of the Tokamak X-120S. 28 power generated is massive for this class of reactors, and given that this can be bought for less than 30000 Credits, it’s almost certainly the best Class-A reactor for the price. Definitely worth checking out if you’re looking to build yourself a powerful ship on a budget.

Best Starfield reactors: The Z-Machine 3000 Reactor in the ship builder.
Image captured by VideoGamer

Z-Machine 3000 Reactor (B-Class)

Power Generated28
Reactor Health65
RequirementsPiloting (Rank 3), Starship Design (Rank 3)

The Z-Machine 3000 Reactor is a Class B reactor that provides a nice step up from the 360T Stellarator on all fronts. While the increase to 28 power generated is not huge, it’s certainly enough to power a newly upgraded B-Class ship. Where it really helps out, though, is the increases to the reactor health and hull stats, more than doubling the values of the 360T Stellarator. This is a massive help against the tougher opponents you’ll find in the mid-game, and will keep you alive in space combat where you otherwise would have died. Not an essential upgrade per se, but one you’ll be glad you have.

Starfield best reactors: The 104DS Mag Inertial Reactor
Image captured by VideoGamer

104DS Mag Inertial Reactor (B-Class)

Power Generated39
Reactor Health71
RequirementsPiloting (Rank 3), Starship Design (Rank 4)

While it costs a fair bit more than the Z-Machine 3000, the 104DS Mag Inertial Reactor offers a lot more power for your buck. At 39 power generated, it’s one of the most powerful reactors in the game, and is especially impressive given its status as a Class B reactor. If you’ve got the money to blow in the mid-game, this is definitely a great choice.

Best Starfield reactors: The SF40 Sheared Flow Reactor in the ship builder.
Image captured by VideoGamer

SF40 Sheared Flow Reactor (C-Class)

Power Generated40
Reactor Health116
RequirementsLevel 72, Piloting (Rank 4), Starship Design (Rank 4)

Based on our time with the game, the best ship reactor in Starfield by a mile is the SF40 Sheared Flow Reactor. It comes with a whopping 40 power generated, which will be more than enough to power even the highest calibre ship modules, while its 116 reactor health and 1315 hull stats are nothing to sneeze at defensively either. Last of all, 3 crew capacity will give you a nice boost with having more crew members on board. At a value of 77615, it’s one you might have to save up for, but it’s well worth it, as once you’ve got this reactor on your ship, you’ll never need to buy another one again. If money is no issue, this is not only the best Class C reactor, but the best reactor in the game.

Starfield best reactors: The Pinch 8Z Reactor in Starfield.
Image captured by VideoGamer

Pinch 8Z Reactor (C-Class)

Power Generated40
Reactor Health129
RequirementsLevel 60, Piloting (Rank 4), Starship Design (Rank 4)

If money is no issue, this is not only the best reactor for Class C ships, but the best reactor in the game. With the same 40 power generated as the SF40 Sheared Flow Reactor, the Pinch 8Z Reactor comes with additional health and hull stats, making it capable of withstanding some heavy blows. It’s a small upgrade, but an upgrade nonetheless, so if you’re looking for the best reactor possible, no matter the cost, the Pinch 8Z Reactor is the one for you. Be aware that this can only be bought from the Neon spaceport.

Fusor DC401 Reactor (C-Class)

Power Generated29
Reactor Health90
RequirementsLevel 20, Piloting (Rank 4)

Though outclassed by the Pinch 8Z Reactor, the Fusor DC401 Reactor is a solid option if you’re still working to hit the right unlock requirements for a beefier C-Class reactor. You’ll need Level 20 and Piloting (Rank 4) to unlock the Fusor DC401 Reactor, which is reasonable easy to attain. It’ also relatively cheap compared to other C-Class reactors and packs in a reliable hull stats to brush off most attacks. It’s a perfect mid-game option that works as a placeholder before you upgrade to the Pinch 8Z Reactor or SF40 Sheared Flow Reactor.

What is the best reactor in Starfield?

The best reactor in Starfield is the Pinch 8Z Reactor. It has the highest amount of power generation of all reactor modules, as well as decent health and hull stats. While it costs more than most reactors, it’s worth the investment, as it means you’ll likely never have to upgrade your reactor again.

Where do you buy reactors in Starfield?

Reactors can be purchased from the Ship Services Technician at any major spaceport and shipyard in Starfield. While your average ship technician at spaceports like those in New Atlantis or Akila City will offer you a general selection of reactors, certain ship manufacturers have their own headquarters where you can buy ship modules only found there, such as the Deimos Staryard. Other places such as Hopetown (Valo system), New Homestead (Sol system), Paradiso (Sol system), the Red Mile (Porrima system), The Key (Kryx system), or The Den (Wolf system) also have vendors with reactors for sale. If you’re after a reactor from a certain manufacturer, check out our Starfield ship manufacturers guide to see where to find the shipyards of each one.

Should you spend a lot of money on your reactor?

This completely depends on how much money you have, and what your priorities are, but if you want the best ship you can afford, we recommend splashing out on a good reactor. If you’ve got a top of the line reactor, you can then upgrade the rest of your ship bit by bit, rather than buying expensive modules that you can’t actually power yet. If you’ve come into a lot of credits, your reactor is the first thing you should look to upgrade.

That’s everything you need to know about the best reactors in Starfield. If you’re looking for a particular planet, but don’t know what star system it’s in, take a look at our Starfield planets guide. And if you’re wanting to know more about the best Starfield weapons or Starfield starship weapons, we’ve got you covered there, too. If you’re looking for quests check out the Sabotage, Absolute Power, Alternating Currents, Operation Starseed, Entangled and Delivering Devils quests. For more help Starfield, check out the Jemison Mercantile locationwhere to get Digipicks, Red Mile location, and our Sabotage side quest walkthrough.

About the Author

Alex Raisbeck

Alex is a Guides Writer for VideoGamer. He is an indie gaming obsessive with a soft spot for Zelda, roguelikes, and Football Manager, as well as an unhealthy relationship with his backlog.


  • Release Date: 06 September 2023
    • - 06 September 2023 (PC, Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S)
  • Platform(s): PC, Xbox Series S, Xbox Series S/X, Xbox Series X
  • Genre(s): Adventure, RPG, Science Fiction, Space