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Smith & Wesson M&P Pistols All Variants of the Smith & Wesson M&P Auto Series


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Old 12-05-2010, 03:47 AM
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Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45  
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Default Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45

I am new to this forum and to handguns in general. Have read much regarding the issue of 9mm/.40/.45 for SD/HD.

Aside from that issue, I would like to hear input regarding/comparing the issue of recoil from the M&P 9, M&P 40, and M&P 45. I do understand that the recoil increases in the order that I have listed them, but beyond that basic fact, how do the forum members assess the relative differences?

To put it another way, if recoil was the only issue on the table, what would cause one to select one over the other.

(I did a general search but could not find anything specifically on this topic.)

Thanks for for your input.
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Old 12-05-2010, 05:26 AM
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Len:

Welcome aboard!

Your "order" may have a slight flaw .... (More about that in a second.)

Bear in mind that the size and weight of the gun DIRECTLY affects the felt recoil. A full sized 1911 just feels nicer than one of those micro-45's some people lust after....

That said, the .40 is a little "snappier" for most people, and while the effective recoil (which is a measure of comfort and being able to get back "on target" quickly) of the .45 may be a tad higher (especially in a lightweight gun), the .40 may jump farther than you like....

If you're talking about the full sized M&P, for example, I think you'll find the .40 and .45 about the same. The 9mm is just sort of pleasant by comparison. (I just bought an M&P9C, and was shooting it the other night. Then I picked up my M&P40C and.... AARGH.... OTOH, a full sized M&P40 isn't too bad for me - my usual carry is a small, but not "micro" 1911, in .45ACP.)

SO, the recoil issue really is kinda personal.... I just swapped an XD9SC for the M&P9C because my daughter (the 9's were for her) just couldn't stand the Springfield. Overall, I find the M&P a better gun, after adding an Apex DCAEK kit, but that's another story. She's kinda petite....

If you're an average guy (or gal), the .40 may be OK. I think most people would find the full sized .45 just as OK. The 9mm (again, in the full size gun) just sort of sits there and goes bang ....

There's a great deal of debate on the "must be a '4x'" situation. If we just go with recoil, that simplifies things a little, but the rest of it has to be included. With a 9mm, you are more likely going to have to take a second shot to STOP an assailant. The 9mm, should you need to do that, will be easier to get back on target, presuming the gun's not too small. IMHO, if you get a good hit with a .4x, you won't "need" that second shot as badly, if at all, but will have more trouble making it. Especially with a .40....

Now, if you shrink the gun - the Compact 9mm, .40, or .45, everything gets worse. Overall effectiveness of the round may decrease slightly, but the 4x's are going to be much harder to get back on target. You may find a .40 out of the running at this point. The smaller you are, the harder this will be....

(You now should realize that "hitting a range" is always the best way to buy a gun, if possible. If you don't feel right with it, you probably won't....)

Some years ago, I took my daughter out to a range, with an S&W M22A for her. Picked it up on a trade.... (.22 "Target" pistol. Huge, but not heavy.) After firing a couple rounds from each magazine to be sure the thing was safe, I let her have it. She put about two magazines through the thing and demanded my Commander.... (4.25" slide, but essentially a "Government Model" 1911 if you're not familiar with 'em.) She really can't handle the .45 all that well, but was good enough to get a first shot off....

I also have a curiosity - an S&W CS45. That's sort of a PPK/S in .45ACP. Might have a barrel there someplace, but I can't find it. Recoil is considerable, but the grips resemble the ball on top of a pogo stick, and it's sort of straight back. Even the kid can shoot it well, but she's too small to pull the trigger double-action.... (She's 24 - just kinda tiny.)

It all boils down to a subjective thing - an average-sized individual probably can do well with all of those. I like the .4x's myself. YMMV and all that, but other than the 9mm being considerably softer (presuming the same size/weight gun), the real issue is the stopping power.

(It's also been said that you won't feel the recoil, or even hear the gun, should you actually use it. The major issue is your ability to get a second shot off should it be needed. The 9mm will be easier, but the .4x's will often make it less necessary.)

For a nightstand gun, go with a Full Size. The extra capacity may not mean anything, but overall it'll just shoot better, and most people seem to do better with the longer barrel.

For carry, the Compact is probably a better choice. The grip frame is the part that's usually harder to conceal, and the Compacts definitely are smaller there. You lose some capacity, but the spare mag (you should carry one anyway) is going to be smaller ....

If somebody starts to tell you about accuracy, ignore 'em.... Getting six rounds into a dinner plate at 30' is good enough for SD. Here in Ohio if they're further away than that, some lawyer or prosecutor may have you for lunch anyway....

Regards,
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Old 12-05-2010, 01:32 PM
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Len, again welcome to the forum. Recoil is a subjective thing, it is also a learned response from shooting various pistols/rifles and what is comfortable for you. Technique is as important as anything when learning to shoot.

I know this isn't what you asked but being a new shooter I would highly recomment getting a good K/L frame revolver. The double action revolver will teach you good trigger control and be inexpensive to shoot with 38 specials. Most people don't like to hear this because it isn't the manly tupperware choice of the week.

I have a M&P Compact in 40, I hear everyone complain about how snappy they are; however I have never experienced this. This is simply a case of me taking the time to learn to shoot first and worry about caliber later.

To me the difference between 9, 40 & 45 is negligable. Certainly get the pistol that is comfortable for you to shoot, as others have said on this forum the best SD round is the one that you can place on target, a miss with a 45 is less effective than a hit with a 9 mm or 40.

Learn proper shooting technique and you won't notice the recoil of any of the pistols you listed.

Cheers,
Sam
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Old 12-05-2010, 02:09 PM
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Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45  
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I agree with the first two posts. Recoil can affect each of us differently.

The only sure way is shoot each one for yourself.

The entire line of M&P semi auto's are the softest shooting guns I've ever shot. Picking one won't be difficult for you.
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Old 12-05-2010, 06:23 PM
nate20nc nate20nc is offline
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Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45  
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just go to a local gunshop that has a indoor range, some of these places have a rental cabinet... where you can shoot similar guns to what you may like. Start at 9mm and work your way up and find what is good for you. I am fairly new to the forum as well...

and I have narrowed my search down to the 40 c because I shot my brother in laws 45. Sig Sauer a week ago... I felt for a noob like me... I don't want that much recoil while learning how to shoot.

Can anyone answer a Q. for me? I can't seem to tell the difference between SKU: 209000 and

Product: Smith & Wesson M&P .40

Mfg Item Num: 209300

Product: Smith & Wesson M&P .40

I've been racking my brain for a few days hahaha... I'm glad I didn't make a quick purchase or I might not of got what I've wanted... so if anyone could help me out... what is the differnce between these two guns?

only difference I see is on one it says... "No Mag Safety, No Internal Lock, No Thumb Safety" so can I assume the other one has all these safety features?

Last edited by nate20nc; 12-05-2010 at 06:41 PM.
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Old 12-05-2010, 06:44 PM
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nate20nc:

It looks like the 209000 gun has a magazine safety, and MAY have a Hilary Lock.... The 209300 overview explicitly says that that one doesn't have 'em....

The pictures, btw, seem to be the same gun , but S&W has been "marking" the guns without the mag safety with a warning on the right side of the slide. Not visible on those pages....

The Hilary Lock is a hole in the side of the grip near the rear. That's where the Clinton-inspired safety key goes. You probably should avoid that model unless you have small children at home....

I have the first one - no mag safety or Hilary Lock. Nice....

One warning: These are "Service" guns. While not hilariously large, they're not all that pocketable/concealable. Their intent was to replace the S&W revolvers and metal-bodied semi-auto's for "uniform" use. The "Compacts" are rather more suitable for concealed carry. BOTH seem to shoot quite well. (My M&P40C seems to be better in that respect than the Full Size!)

Just IMHO, if you turn up one with a thumb safety, and aren't used to having a thumb safety, you can carry/use the gun without it - the whole thing isn't necessary with this design. However, there's a slight chance of engaging the thing inadvertently that you need to worry about.... As a 1911 guy, the one I just got (M&P9C) isn't a problem 'cause I try to flip off the non-existent thumb safeties on the other two I have....

Buy one of each ....

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Old 12-05-2010, 07:07 PM
nate20nc nate20nc is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SMMAssociates View Post
nate20nc:

It looks like the 209000 gun has a magazine safety, and MAY have a Hilary Lock.... The 209300 overview explicitly says that that one doesn't have 'em....

The pictures, btw, seem to be the same gun , but S&W has been "marking" the guns without the mag safety with a warning on the right side of the slide. Not visible on those pages....

The Hilary Lock is a hole in the side of the grip near the rear. That's where the Clinton-inspired safety key goes. You probably should avoid that model unless you have small children at home....

I have the first one - no mag safety or Hilary Lock. Nice....

One warning: These are "Service" guns. While not hilariously large, they're not all that pocketable/concealable. Their intent was to replace the S&W revolvers and metal-bodied semi-auto's for "uniform" use. The "Compacts" are rather more suitable for concealed carry. BOTH seem to shoot quite well. (My M&P40C seems to be better in that respect than the Full Size!)

Just IMHO, if you turn up one with a thumb safety, and aren't used to having a thumb safety, you can carry/use the gun without it - the whole thing isn't necessary with this design. However, there's a slight chance of engaging the thing inadvertently that you need to worry about.... As a 1911 guy, the one I just got (M&P9C) isn't a problem 'cause I try to flip off the non-existent thumb safeties on the other two I have....

Buy one of each ....

Regards,
Yeah I personally want the one without all safeties because this gun will be a range/home protection until I can get a revolver for the nightstand... point and shoot lol do you recommend a thumb safety?

You got me curious about the hillary lock... Is it there for me to use if I want to use it? I'm hoping it's not always like that... could you imagine someone breaking into your house and you have 30 seconds to grab your gun and find the person in your house... and you have to fiddle with Hillary

I personally think all 40's that I have held have a strong trigger... It only fires if you intend to shoot it the correct way... by fully pulling the trigger back. Yeah you are right! These guns IMHO would not conceal very well... (I know some people on this forum have and do conceal this baby) I want to get this gun and then get a compact when I get licensed but that is a few years down the road.

Yeah you are right about the image of the gun! If you go to the second link and click "In Stock - Click Here" it will take you to the actual image and you'll see the caution on the side of the gun... IT'S A DARN GUN! IT'S DANGEROUS! I understand why they put that but for the amount of money you invest into one of these it should be common knowledge it's dangerous and can shoot with the mag out.
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Old 12-07-2010, 12:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SMMAssociates View Post
Len:

Welcome aboard!

Your "order" may have a slight flaw .... (More about that in a second.)

Bear in mind that the size and weight of the gun DIRECTLY affects the felt recoil. A full sized 1911 just feels nicer than one of those micro-45's some people lust after....

10-4, I guess I forgot to specify the FS models. (It's scarry how I am picking up these abreviations!) That is why I am trying to compare the MPs - same basic gun, just different caliber plus I have held the Sigma, the SW in-between model, and the M&Ps and I really liked the feel of the MPs. Just sort of fitted my hand like a glove while the other two did not. Also held a Taurus FS, but it didn't fit all that well.

That said, the .40 is a little "snappier" for most people, and while the effective recoil (which is a measure of comfort and being able to get back "on target" quickly) of the .45 may be a tad higher (especially in a lightweight gun), the .40 may jump farther than you like....

If you're talking about the full sized M&P, for example, I think you'll find the .40 and .45 about the same. The 9mm is just sort of pleasant by comparison. (I just bought an M&P9C, and was shooting it the other night. Then I picked up my M&P40C and.... AARGH.... OTOH, a full sized M&P40 isn't too bad for me - my usual carry is a small, but not "micro" 1911, in .45ACP.)

SO, the recoil issue really is kinda personal.... I just swapped an XD9SC for the M&P9C because my daughter (the 9's were for her) just couldn't stand the Springfield. Overall, I find the M&P a better gun, after adding an Apex DCAEK kit, but that's another story. She's kinda petite....

DCAEK - OK, that is one abreviation I haven't figured out yet,but I will.

If you're an average guy (or gal), the .40 may be OK. I think most people would find the full sized .45 just as OK. The 9mm (again, in the full size gun) just sort of sits there and goes bang ....

There's a great deal of debate on the "must be a '4x'" situation. If we just go with recoil, that simplifies things a little, but the rest of it has to be included. Simplifying is what I am trying to do to understand how to evaluate the recoil part of the equation. With a 9mm, you are more likely going to have to take a second shot to STOP an assailant. The 9mm, should you need to do that, will be easier to get back on target, presuming the gun's not too small. IMHO, if you get a good hit [Seems like that is double-edged sword with "IF" being the key word. If I get the great first shot, under a lot of stress . . . but if I don't (some sort of a high probability) . . . my odds seem to be better on the second shot with the 9mm], with a .4x, you won't "need" that second shot as badly, if at all, but will have more trouble making it. Especially with a .40....

Now, if you shrink the gun - the Compact 9mm, .40, or .45, everything gets worse. Overall effectiveness of the round may decrease slightly, but the 4x's are going to be much harder to get back on target. You may find a .40 out of the running at this point. The smaller you are, the harder this will be....

(You now should realize that "hitting a range" is always the best way to buy a gun, if possible. If you don't feel right with it, you probably won't....) My son, who lives locally, just bought an H&K full size from his older brother, so I will be going to the range with him, but my nature is to research as much as possible ahead of time so I have some idea what I should be paying attention to.

Some years ago, I took my daughter out to a range, with an S&W M22A for her. Picked it up on a trade.... (.22 "Target" pistol. Huge, but not heavy.) After firing a couple rounds from each magazine to be sure the thing was safe, I let her have it. She put about two magazines through the thing and demanded my Commander.... (4.25" slide, but essentially a "Government Model" 1911 if you're not familiar with 'em.) She really can't handle the .45 all that well, but was good enough to get a first shot off....

I also have a curiosity - an S&W CS45. That's sort of a PPK/S in .45ACP. Might have a barrel there someplace, but I can't find it. Recoil is considerable, but the grips resemble the ball on top of a pogo stick, and it's sort of straight back. Even the kid can shoot it well, but she's too small to pull the trigger double-action.... (She's 24 - just kinda tiny.)

It all boils down to a subjective thing - an average-sized individual probably can do well with all of those. I like the .4x's myself. YMMV and all that, but other than the 9mm being considerably softer (presuming the same size/weight gun), the real issue is the stopping power.

(It's also been said that you won't feel the recoil, or even hear the gun, should you actually use it. The major issue is your ability to get a second shot off should it be needed. The 9mm will be easier, but the .4x's will often make it less necessary.) Roger that. My sister-in-law's husband was a LEO in a city near San Francisco for seven years. He got into a shoot-out that developed out of a car stop about 2:30 in the morning. The short story - the BG got the drop on him at the vehicle window. LEO backs away and BG gets out. LEO keeps widening the distance between them. LEO drops the BG's registration and BG diverts his attention to the falling registration. LEO draws and as he said, he kept pulling the trigger until there was not more sound (a semi-auto pistol). Not even one shot hit the BG! BG unloads his weapon at LEO and doesn't hit anything either. LEO - 0, BG - 0. BG takes off in vehicle and LEO calls for cover. The strange thing is that LEO was a regular at the range and shot well, there!

For a nightstand gun, go with a Full Size. The extra capacity may not mean anything, but overall it'll just shoot better, and most people seem to do better with the longer barrel.

For carry, the Compact is probably a better choice. The grip frame is the part that's usually harder to conceal, and the Compacts definitely are smaller there. You lose some capacity, but the spare mag (you should carry one anyway) is going to be smaller .... I was surprised and how easy it is for my son, similar in size to me, to hide the H&K FS under a tee shirt.

If somebody starts to tell you about accuracy, ignore 'em.... Getting six rounds into a dinner plate at 30' is good enough for SD. Here in Ohio if they're further away than that, some lawyer or prosecutor may have you for lunch anyway....

Regards,
See my inline comments above in the body of the quote. I am torn between the 9 mm and the .40, mostly because of what people say about stopping power and an anticipated likelihood of needing that second shot, but on the other hand it sounds like the 9 mm might be more comfortable on the range and thus more likely to get a lot of practice in on it. Then there is the cost of the ammo . . . . etc.

Anyway, thanks for the thoughtful comments.

LEN
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Old 12-07-2010, 12:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shorty4T View Post
. . . .

I have a M&P Compact in 40, I hear everyone complain about how snappy they are; however I have never experienced this. This is simply a case of me taking the time to learn to shoot first and worry about caliber later.

. . . .

Cheers,
Sam
Thanks, Sam for the response. I had a sales person at Cabella's point out that the 40 seemed to him to be shappier in the wrist as compared to the 9mm, whereas the 45 affected the whole arm so it was less stressful on the wrist. Consequently, for him, if he was going to do a .4X, he would do the 45.

I have had someone else suggest starting with a 9mm and than move up to the .4X, but I am guessing that I won't be doing a lot of trading up due to the cost and being happy if I can sell the wife on the first gun! So my aim is to maximize my chances of making a good choice on the first round.

LEN
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Old 12-07-2010, 01:44 AM
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Len:

Time was we'd pick a caliber, and then find a gun that fit it....

Really is nice to be able to pick a gun, and then find a caliber....

Seriously, it's still "what fits", and what caliber you like, and/or can handle. Most average sized people can handle a full sized .45, for example, and a large subset of those can deal with my 4" "Officer's" sized Kimber, too. But it may not do what you really need....

(Before I forget, "DCAEK" is alphabet soup for Apex Tactical's M&P upgrade kit. This includes a new drop safety plunger, a new sear, and some springs. The overall result improves the trigger almost to the point of the S&W revolvers of the late 60's - about as good as an off-the-shelf handgun ever got without getting outrageously expensive. M&P's made prior to about October 2010 should also have a sear return spring and plunger upgrade from Apex.)

The recoil (actually, getting back on target) issue is highly subjective, and may be at least half fiction, too.... My own experience is that the 9mm is much better in the Compact, and the Full Size in 9mm ought to be very smooth, too. (My M39 is the same size, but a little heftier, than the Full Size 9mm. Apparently nobody told S&W that it should recoil....) The .40's are definitely snappier....

Lots of if's in there.... What it boils down to is that IF you need a second shot, the 9mm may be easier to get back onto the "target". Most shooters, given a full size .45, should be able to say the same thing.... In between it gets messy....

Which is why we say "hit the range".... IMHO, if you can feel comfortable with the hotter round, go for it.

It is true, too, that "spray and pray" seems to be common. Part of the learning curve is to find out that you can't hit the broad side of a barn from inside under stress. You have to practice stress management and all kinds of shooting situations that aren't just pointing the gun downrange and making a hole near the center of the paper.

I don't claim to be great, but our range allows a lot of license - we can set up multiple targets and walk across the floor shooting, for example. Or "wrong hand"..... About all we don't try to do is "quick draw" - there are enough holes in the ceiling....

Concealment is largely a function of the grip size, as well as where you put the holster, and dressing around the gun a bit. For example:



The gun is a full size 1911.... It really is blue.... I'm big enough to get away with it (or a Full Size M&P40), but the smaller grip makes it easier when I choose the smaller 1911. The longer slide is a minor issue, but if it ends up in my hip pocket, that's a non-issue. The holster shown has an open bottom, so any length works - the shorter barreled guns just don't stick out (and potentially stick out of my shirt).

(Not to start the "CCW Badge" argument - I'm a semi-retired rent-a-cop, among other things. The badge is real....)

Regards,
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Old 12-07-2010, 08:31 AM
GaryM&P GaryM&P is offline
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Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45 Recoil comparison - M&P 9mm, 40, & 45  
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I've owned full size M&P's in every caliber. I would rank recoil in order from least to most in this order:

9mm
357sig
45acp
40s&w

I normally don't buy 40cal pistols any more because the recoil is too snappy. That being said, I find that the full size M&P has the least recoil of any 40cal I have ever owned (and that is several).
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Old 12-08-2010, 05:08 AM
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Thanks, Gary. That was very helpful having the comparisons between the M&P series.

LEN
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