My advice is get a compressor, I looked into the electric option and most are only good for spraying fences. The compressor will give you far more options as far as spraying equipment goes. Getting a decent finish at home is difficult enough as it is, without hobbling yourself with inferior tools.
If you don't want the compressor after the job is finished, just put it on ebay and get some of your cash back.
I agree that a compressor is the best way to go and also that home paintwork is a tough row to hoe
But doing it properly is not cheap! You need a compressor at least 3 levels better than the sort you get from Aldi, with a good FAD (free air delivery) then you need a good quality water trap, line, a decent spraygun (or 2, I always kept separate primer and finishing guns) plus, if you're using 2 pack, breathing gear and impermeable overalls. Isocyanates are NOT good for you! Finally you need a warm, dry, clean, dust and silicone free environment to paint in. If you've so much as sprayed one bolt with WD40 in the space you are painting in, your finish will pay the price!
I used to paint cars quite often at work and I've painted several cars at home, with varying results. I don't do it any more, it's too time consuming for my level of perfectionism, there are too many things to go wrong and i'm getting too old for that s**t! Nowadays I leave it to a trusted professional and pay the price!
The second car I ever painted, circa 1973, was a cheap blow over on my neighbour's girlfriend's Anglia 105E. We used about 10 different shades of dark blue paint mixed together (celly in those days) from my works paint store, thinned with gunwash thinners and painted it in the street with an HVLP spray gun run by an old cylinder vacuum cleaner! Needless to say the finish was not too special, but a quick wet flat with 1000 grit wet and dry and some polish at least put a shine on it! The council's environmental health dept would have 50 fits if you tried that today!
So you CAN get a half decent finish with inferior gear, but that's ALL you'll get. If Richard is happy with that for whatever he's painting, then carry on and good luck is my advice!
PS, Many years ago, a friend of mine BRUSH painted his Vitesse 2 litre. He happened to work at a Berkshire Green Line bus garage, so it was Green Line Bus Green! He must have put 12-15 very thin coats of paint on that car, flatted carefully between each coat and applied with the finest quality brushes money could buy. When he'd done with it, you absolutely couldn't tell it had been brushed and any concours competitor would have proud to show it. But as I recall, it took him about a year altogether to achieve it! It was standing joke in the east Berks TSSC branch we were both members of, at least till he presented the finished article, then he had the last laugh!