The Internet is littered with hundreds of best-of gun articles, and I started this article with the idea of compiling a traditional Top 5 list. But when I saw the sheer amount of these articles, I chose to do something a little different.
I decided to list the top guns in five broad categories, but not base it only on my opinion. I’ve searched the Internet high and low, paying attention to forum reviews rather than gun magazines, who tend to love every trigger they’ve ever pulled.
So let’s get started.
The Best Not-So-Compact, Compact Pistol
Gun companies have this term “compact,” and they throw it around a lot. The problem is they keep saying that word, but I don’t think they know what it means. Weapons like the Glock 19 and Sig P229 are called compact but seem rather large. They definitely aren’t for everyone, but they are my favorite carry gun. Mind you, I’m 6-foot-4 and 240 pounds, so hiding a large gun isn’t hard for me. They offer more capacity, easier recoil management, and tend to be more accurate. And the winner is……
H&K USP Compact
It’s one of the original guns built to handle the 40 S&W in a time when most guns were based on the 9mm and built up to the 40 S&W. Of course, these days you can have a USP Compact in 9mm, 40 S&W, 357 SIG, etc. Heckler and Koch have a long history of producing dynamic pistols designed to be used in combat, and are a favorite of Special Forces around the world.
The low bore axis helps control the traditionally snappy 40 S&W. The bobbed hammer keeps the weapon snag-free, but the half-cock position allows you to still thumb back the hammer. The multiple variants allow someone to carry in any which way they want.
The H&K USP Compact is dead-on accurate. It is superbly lightweight, and very comfortable to carry if you have the ability to hide it. The downsides are that the rail is proprietary, and some of the controls are large. These larger controls keep the weapon from being as slim as it could be, but are easier to use.