Wayne at the American Firearms School likes all four of these guns. So do I. But I like guns in general, compacts in specific and the Ruger SR9c, Smith & Wesson M&P Compact, Glock 26 and Springfield XD Compact in particular. You can watch Wayne fire these bad boys after the jump. At this point, I’ll cut to the chase. Wayne likes the Glock the best, the Smith next, Ruger after that and the Springfield last. For him, it’s all about the triggers. The ex-military man has a thing about triggers. As for me . . .
I like the Ruger SR9c best; it’s the sexiest of a distinctly non-sexy bunch and it feels much more accurate than the others. It isn’t. It’s just smaller in the hand with a much “sharper” trigger pull. The sights’ superiority is no optic illusion; they’re phenomenal. Unfortunately, the SR9c’s slide-mounted safety is a deal killer. So why do I like it best of all? Love. [Click here to read the full review.]
I’m a far better shooter with the Springfield Compact than the other two guns. At the same distance as Wayne’s demo, I put four bullets in the same hole (I swear). But then I’ve fired nearly 10,000 rounds through a full-size Springfield XD-M. It must be said: the chunky but not funky XD Compact is the only gun that can make a Glock look svelte. Still, the XD Compact’s the best gun for me if I want to hit what I’m aiming at, which is kinda the point of the whole exercise, really.
I know: the Glock is even more accurate. And its trigger pull rivals the Ruger’s for control and precision. I love the Glock’s brick-like minimalism, but I can’t get on with the gun’s grip angle; it always feels foreign in my hand. Shooting the 26 is like driving a Ferrari V12: you have to drive it the way IT wants you to. But when you do, my God is it fast, with razor sharp handling.
For me, the Smith M&P doesn’t win in any category. It’s got a squishier trigger than the Springfield, it’s only slightly better looking than the Glock, it’s not as comfy as the other guns and it doesn’t want to punch paper exactly where I aim it. So, no thanks. Unless I really need it. Then yes please.
Needless to say, I’m talking complete crap. All four of these guns are more accurate that I am. As Wayne points out, in this niche, it all comes down to personal preference. Which tells you just how good all four weapons are, and how great is to be an American. Unless you live in Massachusetts, which doesn’t let you buy the XD.