Ryan Finn for TTAG
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“The .380 was a cute fad,” Springfield Armory’s print ads proclaim. “Now, let’s get back to business.” Back to business indeed. Forty-five caliber single-stack striker fired pistols aren’t exactly a new thing. Kahr and Glock have been making them since the naughties. Truth be told neither model has been flying off the shelves. But no one has made a pocket .45 this small. Our small-handed man Dan got to grips with the XD-S at the 2012 SHOT Show and loved it. But is the new XD-S really all that and a pocketful of protection . . .

Our sleek-looking dual-tone test XD-S arrived in the XDm-standard heavy duty briefcase. The diminutive XD-S looks mighty lonely in there. Speaking of optic distortions, the XD-S’ cavernous muzzle looks like a small snake about to eat a large rodent. The XD-S post-apocaltypic presence is an obvious mutation from what’s considered “normal” by today’s polite shooting society. For owners who believe that discretion is the better part of valor, an all-black XD-S could well be the better choice.

Like its fatter, taller big brothers the XD-S comes with two backstrap options; shooters can tailor the grip to gain comfortable access to the go-pedal. While the XD-S’ grip is skinnier than Gina Athans the XD-S fit my hands better than most pocket nines or .380s I’ve sampled.

That said, the XD-S sacrifices grip length in order to make good on its “noticeably unnoticeable” tag line. Anyone with mitts in the medium to freakishly huge range will find their pinky hanging off the end of the grip. Of a .45.

With the extended mag—yes, there is an extended mag—I could get my whole hand on the grip. Concealment? Not so much. With a replacement base plate pinky extension for the flush mags, the XD-S would be the king of the skinny minis. As it stands it’s a pretender to the throne.

When it comes to the trigger, the XD-S is so unlike its predecessors (e.g., the Xdm 5.25) you’d swear it was made by Gaston’s mob. Springfield Armory calls it a short reset trigger. It’s firm with minimal take up, but not particularly heavy. The break is crisp. Reset takes minor forward travel. The sear re-engages with a commanding audible click and considerable tactical feedback. Like I said, Glock. Complete with Ultra Safety Assurance (USA) Action Trigger System.

Yes Virginia, the XD-S is a highly concealable pistol. With its flat profile, the gun disappear in a pocket holster or an inside-the-waistband rig. Nestled in an outside-the-waistband holster under a T-shirt, the XD-S printed less than my fire department-issued pager. Low-profile three dot sights with a fiber optic front keep the XD-S from snagging when you pull it from your pocket or IWB holster.

On paper and in-hand the XD-S is everything it claims to be: eergonomic and concealable with a trigger that eliminates the “Glock guys’ short-stroke” problem.” I took the XD-S .45 to the range during one of my class, along with 100 rounds of Federal 230 gr FMJ, 40 rounds of Hornady 185 gr Critical Defense and 20 rounds of Hornady 230 gr +P TAP. I shot the XD-S from five yards on a typically windy southwestern Montana day.

Drawing and presenting, the XD-S pointed quite naturally. The .45’s fiber optic front sight is easily acquired. My first two slow-fire mags indicated that gun size isn’t everything. The excellent trigger and enhanced ergonomics makes the XD-S accuracy at “gun-fighting” distances well within the “minute of bad guy” standard.

As you’d expect, rapid fire at a man-sized target at the same distance opened up the groups. With the FMJ and Critical Defense loads, you could easily reproduce groups like the one in the head of the target below. However, blazing away with six rounds of +P produced less tightly gathered target perforation, as seen in the center of mass hits in the same target.

Also unsurprising: XD-S’ extended magazine made for a more comfortable grip— with no appreciable effect on [my] accuracy. Did I mention recoil? Yeah, there’s a lot of it. You have to make sacrifices in order to have a .45 this small. You feel each and every shot in much more detail than you would with a full-sized carry piece. To steal a line from a guy on Reddit, it’s like high-fiving a hammer, albeit a small one.

In the video below, you can see that the XD-S is a jumpy little thing, a fact exacerbated by the use of +P ammo, which I’d definitely recommend in a pistol this small.

I had two of my colleagues run the XD-S to make sure I wasn’t being a pansy. They agreed with my assessment. After a few mags, you’ll feel a soreness creeping through your hands that’s typically reserved for those who like to punish themselves by regularly shooting .357 J frames. More recoil sensitive shooters should to wait for the smaller-chambered XD-S offerings so they’ll take the time to practice with this gun. My choice.

The XD-S delivers on Springfield Armory’s promises. It’s small, lightweight and easy to conceal. It has great ergos, an excellent trigger and shoots a cartridge that puts the .380 to shame. With six in the gun (seven with the extended mag) you have more than enough firepower to extricate yourself from a bad situation.

Uh-oh. Caliber wars! While you’re free to engage in that debate below, a topic RF is set to address shortly, the XD-S is off to TTAG’s Ralph to see how it stacks up against Glock’s skinny .45, the G36. Even if it loses that comparo, the Springfield XD-S is an excellent choice for concealed carriers willing to sacrifice capacity and [potential] muzzle jump issues for additional [potential] lethality.


Caliber .45 ACP
Capacity 5 + 1 RDS
Weight 21.5 oz. unloaded
Sights Steel dovetail rear, fiber optic front
Slide    Stainless steel
Frame    Black polymer
Overall Height 4.4″
Overall Length 6.3″
Overall Width 1″
MSRP: $669 ($469 via Brownells)

Style * * * * *
The XDs takes its styling cues from the Xdm line; it’s one good looking handgun that will look even better in basic black.

Ergonomics  * * * *
Comfortable in the hands and points nice and naturally. Needs a pinky rest on the magazines to step it up a notch.

I’m withholding stars from this category as lack of funds kept me from putting as much ammo through it as I’d have liked. It had no problems with any of the ammo I fed it, though. [ED: this rating will be updated later.]

Customize This  * *
The XD-S has a single-position Picantinny rail for lights and lasers and the inevitable K-BAR bayonet, but aftermarket accessories aren’t yet available. Given the penchant for people tinkering with their XD(m)s, it should only be a matter of time.

Overall Rating * * * 3/4
Heavy duty recoil and current lack of aftermarket parts knock this pistol down a few pegs, but if I needed a .45 for backup or pocket carry, the XD-S would be my first choice.

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  1. I’ve looked at the Kahr CW45, and it also shares the biggest shortcoming of small .45s, IMHO. That is the very limited ammo capacity. .45 is a good round, but I think I’d rather have 6 rounds of 125 grain .357 than 6 rounds of .45. Most gunfights aren’t going to involve more rounds than that, and carrying a speedloader or a speedstrip is just as easy as carrying a spare mag—and I’d wager most CCW holders don’t carry spare ammo as a matter of course.

    A Glock 26 is small, but it holds 10+1 of 9mm. Is it thicker than the small .45s? Yes, but not appreciably so.

    • The CW45 is 6+1, perhaps you are thinking of the smaller PM45 which is 5+1.
      FWIW, I have a Glock 27, an XD-S, and a CW45; the Glock is appreciably wider through the grip than either of the 45s.

    • I have this particular Taurus, and I must say it has been uber reliable on the range. Has less recoil than my compact 1911, and is a double stack.

    • I sold my PT145 to my brother a while back. The PT had to be sent back to Tarus for a bad case of pin creep. The pin just forward of the trigger kept working it’s way out to about 1/4″ every 100 rds or so. After it was returned, it performed well. I replaced it with a Bersa Mini Thunder .45. I have to say, the Bersa is the best handling sub-compact pistol I have ever shot. The grip is a little wider than I would like, but otherwise it is flawless. The first trip to the range, I missed a golfball sized target on the 100yd berm by 6″ on shot #200. The selling point for me was the DA/SA option. DAO weapons aren’t very comfortable to me, but then again, I learned to shoot with a Springfield 1911 GI .45 Hi cap (14+1).

      • How do you guys hit a golfball size target with a pistol and I have a hard time with a rem 308 and scope, I don’t wanna get in a gunfight with you.

  2. I had an XDS for a month, and I just traded it for a Springfield 1911 Micro Compact Lightweight. The recoil didn’t bother me that much, but the ergos on it just didn’t work for me. If the grip length would have been half an inch longer, I could have gotten a much better purchase on the grip, as it was, my pinky finger had to stretch to tuck under the magazine.

    Also I had a issue with slide bite. When my grip was such that I had best control, and was most comfortable, I kept getting slide bite. It’s a nice gun, but it wasn’t for me.

    • If you carry the six round mag instead of the five round your entire hand will fit on the grip, and another 1/2 inch will not compromise your ability to conceal it. It’s a great EDC piece.

  3. As far as the recoil, what you’re describing is a problem lots of .40 PPS owners (myself included) have. I’m gonna tell you now, drop $10 on a Limbsaver large subcompact grip sleeve. I don’t know if it’ll kill the recoil problem outright (it does for us), but it will go a long way towards reducing it.

    Of course, you’ll probably have to do some aftermarket cutting on it to make sure it doesn’t keep the grip safety down by default.

    • I sold my LC9 because I wanted a 45 for the carry and protection. I have shot my XDs a few times. Last time I was putting bullets 1 -2 inches 75 feet away. Awesome weapon. It shoots like a fire breathing dragon. My grandson told me that fire was coming out when I shot it. I love the recoil, it is absolutely fun to shoot. Kinda of like motorcycles – if you want soft in your life – get a gold wing, but if you want the real deal, get a Harley. End of game on the receiving end of this bad little boy.

      • I have all 3 of the Springfield XD(?) Series. And I absolutely love them all for different reasons. I will probably find a couple of reasonable priced 7 round Mags for the XDS. I have the 4.5 and 5.25 covered as I have 4 Mfor each.

        They are all Very Accurate, easy to shoot, and MINE!

        I parked (In the Gun Safe), a Colt New Agent that I have carried daily for over 2 years, the XDS weighs about 1/2 of the Colt. Now I gotta find a CT for the XDS.

      • I own the Springfield XDS 45 ACP and I have shot about 50 or 60 rounds of Federal 230 grain through it. I love the accuracy, handling and the recoil is very manageable. I feel like I have a power house in my hand. I love the weapon and carry it everyday. It is more dependable than than the Taurus 24/7 40 cal. or the Smith & Wesson 40 cal. I own. With this little power house I only need 2 or 3 rounds to take care of a threat.

    • Haha, I actually outlined this and started writing it before the new “guidelines” came out. If I really wanted to piss Nick off, I’d say something disparaging about Mosin-Nagants 😉

      • If I really wanted to piss Nick off, I’d say something disparaging about Mosin-Nagants

        That would piss me off, too.

  4. As a person that used to pack a heavily modified Star PD 45 as his Sunday, go to church, piece I am happy to see this trend in 45s. The ergonomics and weight reduction afforded by the use of modern polymers is a real game changer in the 45 CC world as milled/cast receivers never fit my hand properly and reduced control during recoil. As to felt recoil the shooter always has the choice of reducing bullet weight and powder charge for training purposes.

  5. This seems like an impressive handgun, but the idea that it’ll take the place of a pocket 380 is silly- it’s nearly twice as heavy as an LCP/P380/etc. From the listed specs it doesn’t sound any smaller than the Kahr PM/CM45. I’d be curious to see a side-to-side comparison of those two.

  6. a pager. i thought i was a dinosaur. but to the topic at hand. a 45 this small would cut down on my practice because of the arthritis. i would like to see this in 9mm. i can only comfortably fire 70 to 100 rounds through my j frame at any given time. a small 9 would probably be less wearing.

    • I agree, I think the xds must certainly fill a different role than a true pocket pistol. I do think it’s a better choice for personal protection though

    • The pager he is speaking of is not an alphanumeric pager like you are thinking. It is a larger box to receive audio pages from the local dispatch system to page out the fire department and/or ambulance. Google Motorola Minitor V.

      More on topic, I’m saving my nickels and dimes. Can’t wait!

  7. The Kahr is almost identical in dimensions and 3oz lighter. Same 5+1 or 6+1 mags and suprisingly accurate. The Kahr’s excellent trigger is a big help. You know it is a .45 and not a .380 when shooting a box or two at the range, but to me the Kahr “fits” better and feels solid in my hand. It will be interesting to see some head to head comparisons.

  8. My glock 29 is not significantly bigger, .25″ wider, slightly longer and taller. Yet it holds 10+1 rounds of a vastly more powerful caliber. I’m still looking at Kahr’s tiny .45 but I see no advantage to the XD-S. I do love my XD45 though.

    • I too have an XD 45 compact. It has a 4.4″ barrel. Quite surprising it is about the same size overall as my .380 Beretta 84 Cheetah. I find, though not a completely original design, the features of the piece are very good. I agree the barrel length should match the caliber. I would have gotten the full package 5″ version but it’s a carry gun. I carry a spare 13 round magazine but keep a 10 rounder in the gun while holstered. The only complaint I have is the M. Mouse holster and auto loader. I would have preferred an extra 13 round mag instead. I went to .45 because I have a jewelry store and a .380 isn’t going to stop some of these big boys in leather coats come winter time. BTW I LOVE .45 acp.but the rounds are just soooooo heavy a round.

    • Your 29, like my 30, is significantly bigger. The specs on paper might make differences seem inconsequential, but these two guns side by side are in two different realms. Even double stack 9mm Glocks and others are a bit wide for me and a single stack just carries much better. So now I can get a 45 in the same size as my cw9, with less grip sticking out. I was originally going to cut the grip down on my cw9 and use pm9 mags for this exact purpose. The xds does that for me, but with full 4″ barrel and mags that convert to full grip. I basically get the firepower of a Commander size 1911, but has all the things that make a great striker fire ccw gun. I really appreciate the addition of the grip safety. I would have been glad if Glock would have made it, but then again, it probably would have cost more

  9. …by the use of +P ammo, which I’d definitely recommend in a pistol this small.

    I’m not sure I understand. Why do you recommend +P? To make up for the lack of bullet capacity? Or was that maybe a typo?

    That’s a pretty gun. I want one. Or the .40 version. I don’t know. But I want one.

      • Re: barrel length vs velocity

        Yeah, I guess I knew that, I just forgot for a minute. I guess I just always looked at it as a difference to be aware of, but not necessarily one to compensate for.

      • I’m really cerious now with what you said about +p ammo, I have the xds 45 and I’ve never shot +p and the last thing I’ve EVER thought is “wow I wish this thing packed more punch” haha but I’m just wondering, in what situation do you think +p ammo is necessary? Do you mean for daily carry you would carry +p? I carry mine with speer Golddots and they pack a major amout of knockdown power! I guess what I’m wondering is, why +p for daily carry?

    • The 45 ACP round was designed to be fired from a full sized gun not a pocket pistol. Too much recoil and not enough velocity. The reason that many people think that the 45 ACP is overrated is because they are shooting light weight bullets like the 185 grain Hornady from a short barrel. You don’t have enough velocity to to use a full sized 230 grain JHP so If you are going to downsize the roung you might as well use 40 cal. A 4″ barrel is the minimum length barrel to take full advantage of the round.

      The XDs is an impressive self defense gun but I would wait until it comes out in a smaller caliber before I would consider buying it.

      • Wrong. Look up testing of various rounds through the XDs on YouTube and online. Modern JHPs can expand at slower velocities.

    • Correct. I owned one – just sold it – and if truth be told it was pretty well made but incredibly painful to shoot. Trigger pull rivaled a polish p64. Couldn’t wouldn’t use it. Went to a.380.

  10. I get it 45 acp rocks I agree. Thats why I ran out and pickup a XDS. Its been my EDC for about a month and as of now not sure if its any better than my Kahr PM40. For me 5’6″ 150 carrying aiwb at 1:00 the shorter kahr just seem to work better. All this from a glock fan. I have the G27 and forgetabout that thing is way fat to carry aiwb.

  11. For those who think that the .45 kicks a bit much for a gun this size, I sent an email to Springfield Armory maybe a month or so before they released the XDs and the person talking to me said that by the end of the year, they will release a 9mm and .40 caliber version. Don’t know how accurate the release date is, but I might get it in .40.

  12. I am surprised no one has mentioned that the XDs has been plagued with light strikes , failures to return to battery, firing pin safety and firing pin damage experienced by a substantial number of owners. I myself purchased an XDs but after hearing about the initial problems I refused delivery and received a refund. Springfield Armory is aware and many are sending their guns in for service. Check out the XDTalk forum/XD-S discussion room for more light on the subject.

    • My local range allows rental of guns to “try it before buying”. At my last outing I put 150 rounds through the loaner XD-s, and had at least 15 DNFs. All had chambered, just not fired. Most cases were fixed by “nudging” the slide forward and then firing. When discussed with the range officer, he suggested my “wrong grip” was the cause, although “correcting” to his suggested grip did not solve the problem. Either I have a serious grip problem, the “loaner” gun was not cleaned well (mine are meticulously cleaned), or Springfield has some issues. Anyone else have any such issues?

      • TPort, I just bought a new XDS .45 yesterday and took it to the range today. I had exactly the same problems (which is why I found your comment in an internet search). I put 100 rounds of Federal 230 gr FMJ, 25 rounds of Remington 230 gr Golden Sabre, and 25 rounds of Atlanta Arms 230 gr FMJ through it (all three brands were standard pressure). With all three brands, I experienced numerous failures to fire, mostly due to failure to return to battery. In each of these cases, the slide would feed the follow-up round, but then stop about a millimeter or two short of battery. A forward nudge of the slide would allow another shot (if I saw the problem before squeezing the trigger, which I became good at). Sadly, sometimes I had to manually send it to battery 4 times on a single magazine (and remember, it’s only a 5 round magazine). Rapid fire would be impossible if it won’t return to battery without a manual assist after each shot. After the first 50 rounds, we did field strip and oil the usual lubrication areas around the barrel and slide grooves. That made no difference for me.

        As in the previous comment, the range owner also suggested alternative grips. I tried several different holds (high grip, low grip, very firm, medium-relaxed), but none worked for me. I do believe it’s a grip issue though, as he shot 3 or 4 full magazines of the same ammo with no issues, while I watched. So although I loved the pistol’s size and accuracy (it is, indeed, very accurate for me), this pistol doesn’t seem to love me (or my grip).

        I did try a Glock 36 and found zero issues, in a back-to-back comparison with the same ammo selections. It shot great for me, with zero malfunctions. That didn’t surprise me though, as I’ve owned and shot the larger Glock models for 20 years. I just really wanted the XDS .45 to work well for me, but I can’t trust it if it’s so finicky about some subtle aspect of my grip technique. By contrast, the slim Glock didn’t give me any trouble. Now I’ve gotta sell a used-once XDS .45 (at a loss, of course) and go buy a Glock 36. Very disappointing.

        • I’ve seen a lot of vids and reviews about this and almost all of them are due to the shooter, usually with larger hands, griping the bottom of the magazine with the pinky finger forcing it up in the frame which puts pressure on the slide which is keeping it from fully returning to battery. This could be the issue you guys are having as well. Just something to try and see.

        • Scott M., thanks for your reply to my post about my XDS failing to return to battery.

          As I mentioned in my previous post, I agree that 99% of these problems are linked to grip technique. So I took the pistol out to my range again today in an attempt to decide this pistol’s fate. Would the issues disappear after a break-in, or am I selling this pistol and moving on? So I put another 150 rounds through the XDS .45 today (total round count is now 300).

          First, let me say that I strongly believe that a carry pistol should be as reliable as it is accurate. If it’s finicky, it’s gonna let you down when you need it most. Murphy’s Law. I believe a carry pistol should be able to do rapid-fire mag dumps left handed, right handed, two-handed… hell, even upside down (or, of course, sideways if you’re a rap star. 😉 But I knew from my last trip to the range that this pistol apparently likes to be held in a certain way, or it seems to jam a LOT (failure to return to battery, mostly).

          Some folks speak of ‘limp wristing’ as a common cause of jams in autoloaders. I’ve never seen such an issue with any of my other automatics (S&W, Sig and Glocks). But I figured I’d try to find exactly what technique actually works for this XDS. So I switched to my non-dominant hand for some one-handed test fires. To my surprise, none of the shots had a failure to cycle! A couple of magazines later, I switched back to my strong hand, and the out-of-battery problems immediately returned. Went two-handed, and the out-of-battery problems remained. Went back to weak-hand only, and the pistol started working correctly. So I started watching it closely and realized that when firing weak-hand only, the pistol recoils up and slightly to the right (not straight up). So I started trying to emulate that with my strong hand. Sure enough, if I bend my wrist (instead of extending straight out), the damn pistol stops jamming 99% of the time. And if I fire two-handed with both wrists bent (opposing V’s), the pistol continues to cycle. But if I resume firing with my dominant hand’s trigger finger about straight in line with my forearm, the pistol malfunctions frequently. It seems that my XDS likes a snappy recoil that’s only possible for me to produce if I fire with a bent wrist on my strong side.

          It did better today, once I figured out how it likes to be held (it’s goofy, but manageable). But I’m still strongly considering dumping this one and getting a Glock 36 as my newest CCW gun. Over the last 25 years, I never had any of these finicky issues with any of my autoloaders until I bought this XDS 45. I absolutely love its concealable size in .45 caliber, and its accuracy; but I don’t think this model is ready for prime-time, yet. Springfield needs to work on these reliability issues (I’ve been reading too many similar posts on xdtalk). These pistols appear to work for some shooters, but I still think its tuning is marginal. I fear it’s going to fail some people when they start firing under high-stress, adverse conditions.

        • Thanks for the added info. Sounds like you are too strong for your own good, lol. I actually had a chance to shoot a full sized XD last night in .40 and the grip was shorter then I would have imagined on it. I actually had a few times where my grip was on the mag a little bit and actually caused it to hang open like I was out of ammo. Wierd problem in my opinion. Im no pistol expert or good pistol shooter by any means but I grew up shooting a 1911a1 that had no probs back then other then stovepiping due to the sharp angled ejection port which was easily fixed. That being said I agree with you that a carry pistol should be able to fire with no issues in any and every situation and weather condition. I really wish I could get my hands on an XDs to shoot and see how it is for me peronally but sadly thats not an option. Thanks again for all that feedback. Hunting for my first pistol ever which will double as my EDC is hard without being able to shoot these weapons and get a feel for things first hand.

      • My brother and I both bought the XDs 45. He has not had one malfunction with his with him or me shooting it. Mine has had consistent failures since brand new. Light primer strikes on every round fired but 1 out of 5 don’t ignite. When this happens, the slide is stuck closed and you have to force it to open, and it doesn’t matter what ammo is being used. Have tried every thing from thorough cleaning and over lubricating, to changing ammo. And like I said, it will fail with who ever fires the gun. I have shot for over 50 years and am very aware of limp wristing and all the other things mentioned in these articles. The 1911’s had a lot of stove pipe problems and I can still intentionally make them do it. In my opinion it is a fault with the manufacture and needs to be fixed. I love the gun for all other reasons, but sadly, this is the worst thing that can happen to a Concealed carry tool and I will not feel comfortable doing so unless it is reliable. I can take any of these miss fired rounds and put them in any of my Glocks and they work. Have never had this problem with the Glocks. I will send it back and see what they can do with it, but after reading a lot of other posts, they don’t seem to solve the problems. One said they were happy with Springfield customer service because after sending theirs back 3 times it was repaired. That’s not my kind of customer service. To spend hundreds of dollars buying ammo to check on their repair is un called for.

    • I have run thousands of 200gr cast bullets and a couple of hundred jacketed bullets through my xds and have not had any of those problems. It’s a great EDC gun for me.

    • You are, of course, entitled to your opinion, but please tell me wtf that means. I don’t know what a “bubba gun” is.

  13. Unlike many pieces, this is indeed a pocket pistol, and in .45 and at bad breath distances, I don’t see any particular need for +p ammo. I would think this gun would easily handle 185s, and if you are all into speed, you could get some of those Wilson all copper 165 grain hps. I don’t think any of it will make much difference in the typical DGU, where display of the weapon, especially one with a giant gaping hole, is more than sufficient. The word is “intimidating.”
    For pocket carry, the critical factor is overall height, and it is this factor that eliminates many guns. For example, the PT 145/745 is a pretty solid little gun, but it is 5.2 inches tall and thus will not fit in a pocket.
    I would like to acquire one of these, but as is true with so many desireable firearms, California will not let me. Since only the XD is sold here, but not the XDm, I do not anticipate that this will be seen except “for LEO only.”

  14. A total capacity of only six rounds? That’s it? What if you get attacked by a six gang-bangers each armed with semis that have 32 round magazines? Doing the math; 6 x 32 = 192 rounds(!) they can fire before re-loading. Need more gun. Lots more gun.

  15. How long until somebody says that it’s in poor taste to review a firearm of a brand that was recently used in a mass shooting?

  16. I for one am definitely interested in getting one, once it gets added to the MD roster. One of the big selling points for me, especially over the Glock and other similar pistols is the grip safety. In my opinion it adds one more layer of safety, making a in the holster, etc. ND less likely.

  17. Sweet! I’m already an XD/XDm fan, and with the improved trigger it sounds like they’ve made a good thing even better.

    But no .45 for me, thanks. I’m waiting for a 9mm version. More bullets in the magazine, less recoil, a LOT less expensive to practice with, and still enough punch to get the job done if you need it to save your life. The only problem then would be getting the wife to let go of it long enough for me to shoot it….

  18. While it is a very nice micro .45, in my opinion a PRACTICAL pocket pistol it most certainly IS NOT. The main reason is WEIGHT and CAPACITY. The XD-S weighs in at 26.2 ounces loaded, that is WAY too heavy to carry around in a pocket without noticeable “droop” which is a dead giveaway that you are packing. Plus, at that weight, this thing will swing like a brick with your body movements in anything but a tight pocket. How do I know? I tried it this past weekend, as a good friend of mine just plunked down over $610 for one.
    I agree with the other posters, while offering this pistol in .45ACP is going to make the .45 purists happy, it will be a MUCH more practical option for pocket carry once Springfield makes it available in .40SW and especially 9mm. I will be waiting to see the capacity with the flush magazine, as well as the loaded weight.

    Until then, like it or not, IMO it is still going to be very hard to beat the Kahr CM9 and PM9 are the ones to beat in my opinion for those of us that are looking for the best combination of size, weight, capacity, reliability and quality. Especially the CM9, as those can be purchased for under $400. Don’t believe me? Consider this: for the 26 ounce weight of the XD-S with only six rounds, you could carry the 7 round Kahr CM9 PLUS an eight round magazine for a total of 15 124gr 9mm +P Gold Dots. I dunno about you, but in a gun fight against human targets I will take 15 rounds of 9mm over six rounds of anything else. THAT IS A HUGE CAPACITY DIFFERENCE for lugging around the same amount of weight.
    Think about it…….

    • You people are missing something here: Carry a double-action pistol without a holster is no problem as the heavy pull prevents accidental discharge. On “safe-action” triggers like this (actually a single action more than double)
      it takes only a light pull to set a cartridge off, so it HAS TO be carried in a holster to be safe, grip safety or not. Nothing wrong with this for you holster freaks, but for those who carry bare in a pocket or purse, this pistol has little utility.

  19. Good day!

    I purchased the xds 2 weeks ago. In straight to the point expression “its great”.
    I have a sig1911 hk40 and this by far is the best conceal carry. I have baseball mit hands and yes my pinky finger falls off. But with that said I over came that and its great. The recoil I would call more of a snap then a push back like my 1911. The only thing I would ask for is a mag with a pinky rest not so much an extra round or two because lets face it! Its a 45 with a 3.3 inch barrel the bang and flash are just as much a part of the shot as the lead!

  20. Shooting these short barreled .45 acp in my opinion is like puling the trigger on a 12″ 12 gauge, not much fun! I have a Taurus pt 745 ( single stack, 6 shot .45). I will take my Glock 21 SF (.45acp) any day for accuracy, capacity; getting back on target quicker. The Taurus pt 111 in 9mm is a good gun & accurate. The pt111 is the same size as the pt745.
    I wish there was a 9mm revolver available for concealed carry that i could trust as much as I do my Glocks.

  21. I own one. Love it. Can’t make it malfunction. Holding up as it should after a scooch over 400 rounds. I can pocket carry it just fine, not everyone can I bet, but I think many will be able to just fine. My first Springfield and impressed.

  22. I bought the XDs in mid August and I like it very much but there are a few things that I don’t like. Yes, the 5 round magazine leaves your pinky hanging but the extended magazine should make up for that. I won’t call it slide bite but my hands are a little bigger and it did leave a mark on my thumb from the top of the grip near the slide. Not really a big deal, it is a .45 and does have a bit of recoil. This is not a pistol that you’re going to take with you every weekend and shoot and if you do, it’s still not going to kill everyones hands.
    What I do like is the accuracy and the ability to conceal. I have an XDM in .40 and it’s one of my favorite weapons to shoot. With the 5 round magazine, the XDs is hardly noticable. I do carry my XDM in the Winter with the paddle holster but I usually have a hoodie on and it conceals it very nicely.
    Now comes the part where I say I love it. Sorry, I don’t. I also own a S&W Shield 9mm and that’s the gun I carry most of the time. Fits my hand natural, accurate and highly concealable also. I know, I know, “it’s only a 9mm and the XDs is a .45!” Both are lethal and me personally if I was a criminal, I wouldn’t want to be shot with either. The S&W is just my personal preference. I own a Kimber Ultra Carry(.45), XDM(.40), Ruger LC9(9mm), S&W Shield(9mm), S&W M&P 40C(.40) and the XDs(.45) and each gets shot and has a purpose. None of my weapons listed have malfunctioned and only the Kimber has a downside on the field stripping. No FTE’s, no FTF’s on any of them including the XDs. Why did I buy the XDs? Because I like Springfields and I still do. I won’t be selling my XDs and it will see time in my holster, just not as much time as my Shield.

    • HI there,
      I have been researching alot and am locked between the XDS and the S & W M&P 40C. Small-handed girl here…lol. I am more looking at it for home protection, as a 380 is easier for me to conceal. But you mentioned you had both of the above. What would be your choice and the main reason why? Thank you so much for your time!

    • Question for you…first of all I am a woman. I own the xdm40 and love it. I have to use 160 grain instead of the 180 to keep on targwt with the revoik. Im looking at the xds 45 and was told by multiple stores that the xds 45 has much less kick than the 40 xdm. Is this true? I was also looking at the 9 but would rather have the 45 because if im shooting, I dont want them to get back up. The recoil is big with me and no nearby store has this as a rental yet as I would love to see for myself. I read that you have both guns, so can you compare my 40 to the new xds 45?

      • I have the same .40 that you do, and the XD(S) in .45 is less “flippy.” I don’t know if it’s more controllable than my .40, but I would definitely say it’s as controllable, which I guess says something good, since it’s a smaller, lighter gun.

      • Had my xds serviced to correct problems and am pleased with it now. I’m a big man so I’ve rarely experienced any recoil problems. My wife and I have matching xds and she shoots 230 grain hardball with no problems whatsoever. I reload and mine likes the hornady 230 grain HAP rounds.

    • Question for you…first of all I am a woman. I own the xdm40 and love it. I have to use 160 grain instead of the 180 to keep on target with the revoil. Im looking at the xds 45 and was told by multiple stores that the xds 45 has much less kick than the 40 xdm. I was also looking at the 9 but would rather have the 45 because if im shooting, I dont want them to get back up. The recoil is big with me and no nearby store has this as a rental yet as I would love to see for myself. I read that you have both guns, so can you compare my 40 to the new xds 45?

  23. I have the Taurus PT140, 40S&W, and it has been absolutely flawless, over 1500 rounds through it, no FTF, no FTE, comparatively accurate to a number of other considerably more expensive brands. I read an inordinate amount of criticism for Taurus products in the forums, and I have always been doubtful due to my own experience. In my experience, I simply can not justify the criticisms when considering the Millennium, even though I have looked very serious at the PT140 with an overly critical eye, looking for problems due to the inordinate number of criticisms in the forums…they just never happen to me, period. I have heard considerably good things about the Taurus 24/7G2, sort of the next generation to the Millennium Pro line, but I like the ergonomics of the PT140 so much, with a predesigned finger extension in the mags, and the 24/7 doesn’t have the finger extension available, to my knowledge. PLUS, if we are comparing .45ACP, and magazine capacity, I will take the 40S&W Millennium Pro with a full (10) rounds of firepower, even though I am actually a little more accurate with the Glock G26 at the range, but only (6) rounds there.

    • So the moral of the story is… Dont listen to what others say on forums and boards and just make up your own mind? Just wondering as you mention your Taurus and this story is about the Springfield Armory XDs.

  24. Read a bunch or reviews and was really kind of liking this gun but in the back of my mind there was/is – its a new gun…. wait a few yrs. Sure enough reading more reviews like this I start to find people having issues. See ya in a few yrs Springfield Armory XD-S when you get the bugs worked out. Love the way this gun looks and hope they do get the issues ironed out. I’ll be watching and waiting. Just bought a pf-9 hoping after it has been out this long it will work well. Have not shot it yet so we will see.

    • Agreed to wait abit to work out bugs. Really waiting for the .40SW.
      Hear that Springfield may have the 9mm & .40SW come out before years end, but nothing official. Also would be great if they have the special mag giveaway in the fall. Maybe wishful thinking?

  25. Bought my XDs in June. I’ve fired well over 700 rounds thru it. I have experienced no problems with it while firing 230g FMJ. It’s when I tried to run the lighter 185g cartridges that I experienced FTF issues right away. Change back to the heavy load and its on! As far as capacity goes, I carry this for personal protection. If I’m in a situation that is going to require more that 6 rounds of .45acp then I’m in big trouble long before I clear leather.

  26. I got one! What trash! Don’t waste yout money the XDS is total failure. What the
    F$)& Springfeild you have designed and produced a gun that’s trash. The service
    Center says to lube it?… I have a 25.00 RG that’s more reliable then this.

  27. “After a few mags, you’ll feel a soreness creeping through your hands that’s typically reserved for those who like to punish themselves by regularly shooting .357 J frames.” Really? What a bunch of PUSSIES! I shot 100 Blazer 230gr FMJ, 20 Critical Defense 185gr, 20 Gold Dot 200gr+P, 20 Gold Dot 230gr, and 20 Black Hills 185gr TAC-XP +P through mine in one sitting. Did my hand have an imprint after? Yeah, it did. Did it hurt? No, not too bad.

  28. So, with a 3.3 inch barrel, whether you shoot regular pressure or +P rounds, there is a lot of unburned powder still burning as it exits the muzzle and illuminates the night sky with the XDS. Follow up shots at night might be challenging.

    Most ammunition manufacturers test their .45 ACP ammo with 5 inch barrels when giving performance specifications. Speer Gold Dot Short Barrel uses a 4 inch test barrel. You can see the performance of ammunition through shorter barrels on the “Ballistics By The Inch” Web site:

    The Beretta 8045 has a 3.675 inch barrel. The Para LDA PDA has a 3 inch barrel. You can extrapolate the data and guesstimate that the XDS will perform somewhere between the Beretta and the Para. Perhaps Speer Gold Dot Short Barrel ammo or a comparable round with fast burning powders may work better than a +P load in the XDS. As more pocket .45 ACP pistols with less than 4 inch barrels come to market, it may be worthwhile for ammunition manufacturers to introduce new products.

  29. I sold my XDS last weekend. Like I said, I didn’t love it and it wasn’t going to get used much. I liked its accuracy but I am now going for more of a full size .45. There was a comparison on here between the Glock 36 and the XDS. I had both and now I have neither. To each their own and if one of those works for you, so be it.

  30. Thankfully, I traded my XDS this last weekend, too.. I posted above (a while back) that I was having a lot of strange failures with the XDS not returning to battery. After 600 rounds of wasting my time with it, and a trip back to Springfield, I gave up and decided to get rid of it! So last week I shot various generations of all three of the Glock .45 ACP models and decided to trade that XDS for a Glock 30.

    I put 150 rounds through the new Glock during the weekend and another 200 through it tonight (150 Federal 230gr FMJ, 100 Ranger-Ts, 100 Ranger-T +P). For a CCW, the Glock 30 is unfortunately a bit fatter than that XDS. But in all other aspects, it’s just a much better pistol. I should have bought the Glock to begin with. I’m officially done with Springfield XD-anything, for life — crap experience! Cannot recommend. Glock 21 is going to be my next full sizer, soon. After twenty years, I’ve honestly never shot any Glock I didn’t like.

  31. Impressive, a guy who went to a girls school shooting a 45 ACP! Even went +P with it 🙂
    Glad I read the review and comments before succumbing to the new gun fever. I’ll just go high 5 my framing hammer instead.

  32. Just got my XDs yesterday, been waiting a long time to get the all black model. I had read the reports of shortcomings and I can say after my range time my XDs performed flawlessly, even using the aluminum Blazer 230g FMJ. I also had 230 grain Remington HP +P. I believe in the 45 especially if I only have 5-6 rds. The snub revolvers I carry and probably still will because I was raised on revolvers, have only 5 and I fill them with the best 357 125 g HP’s. I have seen the results of both rounds used and I like knowing the 45 needs no special bullet or velocity at close range to be effective. It just works without excessive velocity and penetration. And that’s what I bought the XDs for,however when the other calibers come out I will probably get one. I have never been sold on the high capacity as my hand rarely fits those grips, they’re heavy when fully loaded, and difficult to conceal.

  33. My S&W 940 9MM REVOLVER with full moon clips and Crimsom Trace laser grip never jams, is manageable with recoil, and I guarantee the hammer will never catch on your clothing nor bite your thumb.

  34. Just get a Taurus in either the PT 745 single stack or the PT 145 double stack (10+1). The Taurus is just about identical to the new XD 45. Nothing new. Springfield copied Taurus with their XD with the 5.25″ barrel as well. It’s just a 24/7 OSS. Again nothing new.

    • Your theory about Springfield copying Taurus on the XD is great, except for the fact that the XD is older than the Taurus guns. The XD has been around since 1999 (it was originally the HS2000 released in Croatia, where it is made in 1999) and Springfield licensed US distribution as the XD series in 2002. The Taurus Millenium series was introduced in 2005.

  35. As someone who had not fired a .45 in over a decade and whose most recent shooting experience was a J frame .38, I found the XDs to be perfect. I had it on the range within 5 minutes of purchase and ran 50 rounds of Winchester white box through it without a single issue.

    No fatigue or pain of any kind to speak of. No failures of any kind and it was a very comfortable pistol to hold and fire. Can’t wait to get back to the range and see how I feel after another 100 rounds.

    I spent several months window shopping, holding several brands of pistols and this one felt the most natural to hold. With a DeSantis IWB holster, it disappears on my hip, even in warm weather clothing.

    Best decision I could have made for a personal defense pistol in a large caliber.

  36. Waste of money! This was my first and last springfield gun! I will never buy another! I have the disadvantage of being left-handed, so truly usable guns are hard to find. Glock Gen4s also leave much to be desired. Nevertheless, I found out that XDS stands for Extremely Disappointing Sidearm. I’ve barely gotten 200 rounds through it because it jams, misfeeds, or fails to reset at least once on every clip! I tried the extended magazine which was actually worse! I thought Taurus was bad but Springfield edged past them. I doubt I’ll give it a second chance but I did contact Springfield customer service. Put your money to good use and buy a S&W M&P45c or any other gun that actually works. Maybe I can use this one for a paperweight.

  37. I’ve recently become interested in getting one of these, despite my dreadful allergy to striker-fired handguns.

    This is a LONG time after the review, but can anyone tell me how it performs with 230-grain hollowpoints, which, of course, it will be loaded to the gills with?

    • Well I posted earlier that I had issues with mine. I finally got an RMA (return merchandise authorization) from Springfield and sent it back. They polished the feed ramp and throat a bit more and sent it back to me verifying functionality. It works fine now with the 5 round magazines but the 7 round magazine still misfeeds about 45% of the time (2 to 3 rounds). I learned earlier on this blog that using 45+p rounds might improve performance. Nevertheless, the 5 round magazines deliver and it groups rather well at 25 yards. I can also hit an iron silhouette at 100 yards with it but not consistently. Since it is for concealed carry and personal defense I may keep it around, but I won’t be buying anymore Springfield Armory anything. My Smith and Wesson purchases have never, ever let me down.

  38. I own one. And I love it. Accuracy is amazing. Only one complaint, the take down lever requires the use of a vice-grip, seriously, that’s not a joke. I own an XD compact that takes down as it should. But Springfield has some work to do to make this one work just as smooth. XDS, does NOT takedown easily. The lever requires the use of something like a pliers or vicegrip, -that’s not a joke. I own one and have to deal with that EVERY time I clean it.

  39. I have been looking at this gun for a while now. I have the full size XD in .45 and absolutely love it, but it is NOT easily concealable – especially in summer. So, to keep things simple, I’m thinking same brand / same caliber. It seems this is a love it or hate it gun with a great experience or an equally awful one. So, I’ll limit my question to those things that both camps can respond to: 1) Is it really that hard to break down for cleaning and maintanence? 2) I know it will kick, but I’ve shot handguns that make you wonder if they are about to leave your hand. My full size XD has never made me think I was loosing control. How does this XDs compare? 3) Is it as concealable as it appears? How about with the exended 7 round mag?
    The comments have been insightful. At $549.00 (I can get the all black at that price right now) is it worth it? Thanks to all who choose to reply.

    • Although I didn’t tear down the one I tested, it doesn’t appear that it tears down any differently than my XD(M) 3.8 in .40 S&W. Lock the slide back, rotate the takedown lever 90 degrees up, drop the slide forward and slide it off the frame.

      As far as shootability, after the first couple shots to figure out where the sights were, I had no problem making one ragged hole. The texturing on the frame is super-grippy (much more than your standard XD), and I never had a hint of out of control from it. Even though it’s got a bit of weight to it, it’s still a small gun, and if you shoot a bunch of .45 through it your hand is gonna know it. That said, it’s far from the least comfortable “slimline” gun I’ve shot.

      • Thanks for your reply. I was in the store today and talked with a Ruger representative. He had nothing bad to say about the gun and, even when asked, wouldn’t suggest any others that, in his opinion, might be as good or better. So, I may post back after I’ve purchased and logged some range time with it.

    • I strongly discourage you from buying the 7 round magazine. My XDS performed so badly with a 7 round mag (failed to load, failed to return to battery, misfeeds, you name it) that I sent it back to Springfield. Even after they serviced it the 7 round magazine is a guaranteed failure. If you want to trust your safety to this gun (already a questionable decision), definitely avoid the 7 round magazine.

  40. I love my xds but i have a problem, it doesnt take fmjs very well it wont load one in the chamber if the clip is in”?” any one else having this issue

  41. The Sprimgfield XDS is nothing more than trash. This gun has zero relibility with no trust. Brand new gun falure to fire along with other problems does not give you a comfit level to carry.

    Very disenchanted with this turd.

    • I agree. My XDS is also a big disappointment. The question is what to do with it now. I feel guilty about selling it because the buyer may be fool enough to trust it and pay the price. I thought about using it as a paperweight but some people in the office expressed concern. It’s too small for a boat anchor. Any ideas?

      • I just started breaking in my XDS and have had no issues with the first 200 rounds. I used S&B 230 gr FMJ’s and Remington Golden Saber 230gr JHP. All fed and performed flawlessly. Recoil is not nearly as bad as I thought it would be. Bigger 40 S&W’s (XD, M&P) recoil more than the 45 acp XDS. Am able to keep all 5 in 4″ group rapid fire at 7 yds (under 2 secs). The gun does twist some (in my grip with medium hands and onset arthritis) and the last two are usually at 4″ higher than first 3 impacts.
        For those having issue with their XDS I’d ask what type of ammo including manufacture are you using (TULA sucks), and might there be any give wrist when firing the little 45 XDS.
        Also, Springfield has always been great standing behind it’s products. Contact customer service immediately, and don’t wait!

  42. Bill, I appreciate your input. I did buy the gun and have run 100 rounds through it on two occasions, splitting between the 5 round clips and two 7 round clips. I field stripped and cleaned the pistol before the first outting – I always do. I was using 230 gr. target point sold by the range. To up the ante, I’m left-handed and right-eyed with a resulting tendency to pull to the right. So, I decided to switch to right-handed shooting while breaking in the pistol. The results are: No misfeeds. No malfunctions. Significantly less recoil than I expected. 90% of rounds hitting in the target “kill” zone at 30 ft. (that percentage went up to 98% for the last 50 rounds). All groupings moved back to center line.
    I have small to medium hands, but still like the feel of the 7 round clip better. I understand that several people on this post have had a different experience with the XDs, and I understand your disappointment with it. I am obviously having a very positive experience with the particular gun I purchased. The only complaint I have, and it’s minor, is with the difference in the trigger between the XDs and the full size XD. The full size pull is much smoother and more in line with the lighter trigger pulls on my hunting rifles. The XDs has a much heavier pull with an initial looseness that makes the sudden increase in resistance distracting. Obviously, it has not significantly affected accuracy and I expect I’ll quickly adapt to it. At this point, I have no complaints and am very happy with the XDs. Thank everyone who replied to my post.

    • The Dad: I am considering an XDs myself and glad you’ve had a good experience so far. I’d like to think that problems posted earlier in this blog are related to it being a new gun. Lots of manufacturers have to work the kinks out for several months or longer to get it right. The S&W Shield initially was very rough but after feedback and contInued manufacturing it seems lots of the initial issues were worked out, hopefully it is so with the XDs. On the trigger pull issue, as this is a CCW I wonder if this was intentionally made this way to reduce risk of firing in the pocket. So out of curiosity has this been the same after further use or has the trigger eased up a bit the more rounds you put through it?

  43. I have been considering a XD-S for sometime now after digesting most of what has been written both in magazines (every magazine review I have read has been stellar) and on the internet from present owners. I have surmised that the problems of the gun not returning to battery have mostly been a grip issue with people that have large hands. I have small hands, actually I’d describe them more as short and fat and they seem to work with the XD-S just fine. Folks with large hands tend to push the magazine up with their pinkies which is the reason why it fails to return to battery. I already own a Springfield EMP in .40 S&W which I love. There were problems with that gun with some owners early on too and Springfield went out of their way to take care of those. The only problem I ever had with my EMP was a stovepipe but it was with Hornady Critical Defense ammo which lots of folks have had problems with. I read about a lot of failures to feed with the EMP and stovepipes with HPs but after careful consideration I came to the conclusion that a lot of those problems were caused by limp wristing. It’s easy to do if you’re at the range running 200 + rounds through your pistol. You’re inevitably going to limp wrist a shot or two after so many rounds. So I finally bought one today. $600 for a all black model. I also ordered a couple of 7 round mag extensions from Springfield tonight. I ran 100 rounds of Winchester white box 230g FMJ through my XD-S today right after I purchased it and it gobbled all the ammo up without a hiccup. I was also very pleasantly surprised at the manageability of the recoil on the pistol. Its definitely got a little kick to it but it’s easily manageable and not bad enough to keep you from getting enough practice in. Springfield makes some very nice firearms from the M1A rifles to the Trophy Match 1911s. I understand there are going to be some people that do not like this pistol because it just doesn’t fit them right or it lacks the capacity they want (but I plan to use it as a backup gun so that’s not an issue for me) or they own one and have not had much luck with it digesting ammo without hiccups. (and again I say that seems to be a problem for people with large hands who’s pinkies are jamming the magazine upwards resulting in the pistol failing to completely return to battery) So the gun didn’t workout for you. That is too bad because it is a very nice gun that has carved a nice niche in the market. That said, I think it’s ridiculous that some folks will say they will never buy another Springfield product again assuming that everything they make is garbage. That’s just not true and very disingenuous I think. You’ll swear by Glocks (which I am not a fan of) and dis Springfield very unfairly to them and to yourselves IMO. I own Colts, S&Ws, Springfields, Sigs and Berretas and they all work fine and they all have their place in my arsenal. Try being a little more open minded about it and don’t just reject their whole lineup out of hand because of your bad experience with one firearm.

    • I have two xd’s and one xdm all in 40s&w. How does the recoil of the xds45 compare to xd40s? I’m trying to decide on whether to get an xds45 or xds9. I don’t have the patience to wait for the xds40 to be released, otherwise that would be the caliber I’d get the xds in.

  44. Here is the message that I sent to Springfield:

    I have an XDS that I have had for about three months now. In that time I have taken it to the range twice. The last time, I was having problems with the gun not firing. This usually happens with the first round that is in the chamber. On failure to fire I’ll eject the round,(the round has gotten stuck a couple of times), and cocked the gun so that another round is chambered. The remaining four rounds fire flawlessly. I have three magazines, one that came with the gun, and the extended magazine that I purchased from you.

    Is there something that I am doing wrong? Or, should I return the gun for inspection? The SO number is XSxxxxx. This is my primary carry weapon and it has me worried.

    Their answer:
    Until the pistol is broke in you need to lock the slide back, insert the magazine and use the release to drop the slide in order to get that first round the chamber correctly. With that particular pistol since it is such a slim frame and a high caliber when they leave the factory they are extremely tight and very fitted. Which means the slide has to hit home with a lot of inertia to properly chamber.
    Once you get to the break in period on the pistol you will notice it loosen up significantly and will be able to rack it with your hand to chamber. Until than this is the method we suggest.

  45. I have done a lot of practice with the XD 45. In my humble opinion there is no better callibre. Than a .45. It will put a man down on one shot. It won’t over penetrate like a .357 will but tends to stop in the body. That is a very good thing. Because if it stops then all of it’s energy is delivered to the scumbag. My three rounds of choice are Corbon, Goldot, And Federal Hydryshock. I choose to load up with and carry Federal Hyrashock because it has the number one rating for one shot stops. Not something I practice with though… the price of .45 ammo has more than doubled. But I would still put my life on it because of the damage it does. Hydrashock has a post centered in the middle of the hollow point. For those that know this please forgive me I’m not trying to preach to the choir. This post does two things, first it keeps things like leather from fouling the hollow point which would prevent it from expanding, second it forces liquids around it to expand evenly. .45 Hydraschock expands to about the size of a nickel on impact. This creates a wound channel about two inches in diameter. The result is a sudden loss in blood pressure that results in heart failure useuly in less than a second. But just in case a double tap is AIWAYS best. .45 rules!

  46. I heartily agree. The .45 auto is THE proven man stopper with more than a century of proof from before World War ONE through today. I upgraded my wife from her .380 to .45 auto for just that reason. One shot and the bad guy is down.

    • “One shot and the bad guy is down.”

      You do realize this site is the truth about guns, right? That hardly qualifies.

  47. Thanks for the article. I carry an XD45 with a 13 round mag. I load it wit Federal Hydrashock because based on what research I have done it is the most effective round to produce a one shot stop. That doesn’t mean it always will it just means it is more likely to over Corbon, and, Gold Dot. I would still recommend a double tap just to be sure. In the end it’s all about practice, practice, practice.

    • If you are interested, I’d also look into Hornady Critical Defense. It performs very well in .40 S&W, so I’d venture to say it’d do pretty well in .45 as well.

  48. Loved everything about the XDs45 except the misfires. 4 light primer strikes in the first 50 rounds. Two different factory ammos. Springfield suggested a “dab” of oil in a couple of spots. It did not help. Apparently I am not the only one having this problem.
    No way can I trust this for a concealed carry.

  49. Just picked up my shiny new all black XDS as a b-day present to my self. It will be replacing my Bersa thunder 380 so the tagline fits nice. I have smaller hands so the grip is great. I cleaned it up and took it to the range 200 rounds of Winchester target (all I could find in town) no issues at all, except 1 feed issue when my wife was trying it(probably her fault) the recoil was nothing like I expected from the reviews and the Mrs swears the 380 kicks harder! Main reason I chose this pistol was reviews. One forum in particular sticks out someone had posted the 9mm was better, because it held more shots. The reply was simply “That’s good you’ll need them. This however is a 45.” Research taught me that a 9mm and 380 are basically the same caliber and ammo can even be “substituted” in most guns. That being said the 9mm and 380 casings fit rather nicely inside the spent shells of my 45. LOL I haven’t seen it mentioned but the pistol comes with an extra mag which can be exchanged in about 1 second so in my mind it’s like getting 10+1 shots anyway. I have to say that I am fully satisfied with my purchase and the extras were nice… Case, holster, clip holster, lock, extra clip, replacement sight, even a cleaning brush. I had zero of the issues listed above…maybe they revamped in in the last year? Or, its all abound the size of your hands. Anyway, if you are considering the XDS and have small to medium glove size hands my advice….DO IT!! Every small “carry” pistol kicks, this one is not bad. The accuracy was great, and nice BIG holes in the paper, or…. Fits easily in my pant, or jacket pocket and generally will be in the inside pocket of my leather. Or in the holster on range days. >:)

  50. Recently received by new xds45 acp back from the manufacturer. Light strikes occurred 50% of 225 rounds. Had night sights installed and hope my next visit does not prove out as disappointing as the 1st two.

    I had a Kahr pm 45 acp that dropped magazines and slide would actually come off rail slide. Again, I hope I have not bought another manufacturer lemon. I will check it out Monday, August 5th, 2013.

    • I went to a “Springfield Day” in Houston recently and spent a good deal of time talking to the Springfield reps about their guns. I found these guys to be very informed and proud of the Springfield brand. My suggestion for anyone having had a problem with their XD is to go to the shop you purchased it, ask for the name of the Springfield rep that sells to them and get him/her informed on the problem you are having and get them to help find a solution at the factory. I bet it won’t take three tries to get a fix that way, these guys care and they are the face of the brand.

      On a related note, that day I fired the XDs .45 and really liked it. However I also fired the XDm 3.8 .45 and I think I liked it more. Did anyone else compare these two when before purchasing the XDs? Granted the XDm isn’t as compact for CC but it’s not that bad either… plus you get more rounds and the security of the handle safety being depressed before you can slide the rack to put a bullet in the chamber… I was told that this functionality had to be removed from the XDs to make it as small as it is. Anyway, if you fired the XDs and the XDm and decided to go with the XDs I’d be very interested as to why.


  51. I’ve got about 500 rounds through my xds and I couldn’t be more satisfied. I realise recoil is subjective, but to me the xds is much more comfortable to shoot than some 9mm I’ve tried, maybe it’s because my hands are small enough to get a firm grip. I love the sights on this gun I’m and how it doesn’t snag in my pocket. For a compact pistol the xds is very accurate I like short light take up followed by a single action like crisp trigger break. Velocity loss hasn’t been too bad from the short barrel. The only problem I have had was a feed issue that was a me problem that was remedied by letting the slide and recoil spring do their job. On paper the xds doesn’t seem much smaller than the Xdm 3.8 but in person and in the hand the xds is quite a bit smaller all around and about $100+ cheaper than the xdm 3.8. The xds 45 compares favorably to many 9mm p290

  52. My new XD-s works great…..200 break-in rounds of various 230 grain 45 acp and flawless. Recoil is OK with the FMJ’s but the Hornady Personal Defense is a little harsh but manageable. 7+1 magazine is great.
    My 9mm HK P-30 with 147 grain heavy Buffalo Bore JHP’s in the 15 round mag is like having a 357 magnum in a
    semi-auto. I’m used to my 454 Taurus Raging Bull 6″ fired with Buffalo Bore Heavy 454’s but the big gun handles the recoil well. Enjoy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  53. FYI, there is an after-market (third party) pinky extension available for the 5-round mag and it makes a huge difference in the ergonomics.

    My current carry ammo is some old IMI/Samson 185 JHP. It feeds fine through my XDm, and works well with my XDs when using the 5-round mags. When using my 3 extended mags (fully loaded), the first round will invariably fail to feed. For now, I top off the extended mags with one round of 230 gr FMJ (which feeds off the top of a fully loaded extended mag just fine). When I get a chance (as in a “job” and some “money”), I will experiment with various modern defensive rounds and see if any will feed properly off the top of the extended magazine. If not, the gun or the mags may need some work. (FYI, my XDs has been to SA for upgrading and returned. Had this problem before sending, and it still has the problem after testing since it was returned.)

  54. Well think you need to put things in perspective first what are you going to use the gun for. Remember this is a sub compact .45 you will not be using it for 100 yard shots. Most defensive shootings are 7 yards or less. With the extended 7 rd magazine you get much better control. The situation were you will need a discreet carry it will need to chambered in something that can give you one shoot knockdown and the 9mm doesn’t have it , the .40 has too much kickback making a second shot difficult so the logical choice is .45 with enough knockdown and less recoil the the .40 so you can follow up the second shot. Use the right tool for the right job. Before you buy a gun just to buy a gun think of what you are going to use it for it will save you money in the long run. Use the right tool for the right job. The XDS is a good place to start.

  55. Bought an xds when it first came out………………..sold it…heard about recall and was glad I sold it……year later when post recall ones were available, I bought another………….3 different times FTF…….not for me!!….went to Glock 36 and have never looked back

  56. I shot my Springfield XDS .45 for the first time today. With the slide locked back and magazine inserted it worked fine and chambered the first round no problem. With the slide forward and the magazine fully inserted, working the slide to chamber the first round jammed the pistol every time. There was no faulty ammo or “limp wristing” – I did my part every time. It may seem like no big deal to some, but if the gun won’t work like any other semi-auto I have ever owned, then I’m not sure that’s a good sign. I called Springfield customer service and they said that is just how the gun works – nothing they can do. Well there’s something I can do – return it. First the recall now this – if it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work. And after reading these blogs, it is not something I am going to trust my life with. It seems some people are confusing their love of the .45 with a unreliable pistol that is at best finicky. For now, I’ll stick with my 5 shot Ruger LCR revolver that shoots just as accurately and is MUCH lighter and easier to conceal.

  57. My concern with any short-barreled .45, this one included, is that the bullet is moving too slow. In every gel test I’ve seen with this gun, and others of similar barrel length, these short-barreled .45 bullets don’t reach 12″ of penetration, unless the hollowpoint refuses to open, or you’re firing ball ammo. The Pocket Guns and Gear website is a good example. See their remington golden saber and home defense test, among others in their .45 tests.

    The .45 is a great round, but it loses a lot of its oomph in these smaller packages. I’d much rather go with a 9mm or .40 in a smaller gun, or just get a bigger .45.

    • I ran out of edit time, but I meant to say that they don’t open up when you add clothing to the test. There are examples where this gun will work with a .45 round, and get 12″ of penetration. I believe the Ranger T test was one. The Corbon DPX and Federal HST failed to reach 12″ with this exact gun, however.

  58. I have been a fan of the .45 ACP for along time. I carry a Springfield XD45 Compact with the 10 rnd mag. My thinking is that in a do or die situation I may not be able to hit center mass because of nerves. But I am confident that if I hit anywhere else it will have a much greater impact than smaller calibres. My round of choice is the Speer Gol Dot +P 200 grain. It has shown to expand reliably through 4-5 layers of denim and still penetrate at least 12 inches. Plus it leaves a permenent wound channel of 2 inches. Bottom line is I don’t think a perp is going anywhere even if I only hit the shoulder. I haven’t had any problems with a quick follow-up shot. The gun is very well balanced in my opinion.

  59. I’ve been carrying the XDS in .45 since it came out. I have fired about 1,000 rounds through it and never had a single issue with it. It’s eaten every round of ammo, from the cheapest FMJ to the priciest JHP with nary a hiccup. This is my EDC and will continue to be so. I love this weapon and recommend it to anyone MANLY enough to handle a bit of recoil.

  60. With 6 and 7 round mags the ammo capacity is not a huge concern but I also carry a 357 at times or a full size 1911.. If I was going to war or a police officer capacity would matter. As a civilian I realize I am not going to a gunfight, Heaven forbid the day I have to use one… 5-7 shots will be more than sufficient, if not its going to reload. I just bought one of these and while it kicks its manageable and a competent shooter 7 shots = 7 dead bad dudes.

  61. I have owned, carried & shot an XDs Melonite) in 45 for about 6 months. It replaced a Taurus 738 (stainless). Less concealable, MUCH more power! NO recoil problems at all, even follow-ups, double taps, etc. Deadly accurate far beyond what it should be, eats everything but its own empties AND I still can conceal it in an IWB under a shirt tail. With a full load + an extra 7-round magazine, I am quite comfortable with this “snappy little gun”. My experience is that with Speer 200gr Gold dot +P, most of the snap is on the receiving end. I truly have found what I think is the perfect hot weather every-day-carry concealed carry pistol.

  62. Just my observations, of course, but for reliability, see my comments above. Plus, I have now put some 400+ rounds through my XDs, consisting of loads from premium S/D loads like the Speer 200gs Gold Dot +P to Freedom Munitions reman, to Black Hills 200gr cast SWC loads. Not a single hiccup of any kind. What, no steel-cased Ruskies stuff??? No, I refuse to spend what $$$ I have with Sir Putin & his ilk. Just no! I truly am not concerned whether my gun will function with that stuff because I will never buy it. No snob factor here, just not going to spend my $$$ with the opposition. Absolutely LOVE my XDs! At least mine, dead (the receiving end) reliable. Bang EVERY time. Accurate too.

  63. I currently carry this as my main carry. I really enjoy it. It’s an easy carry and I use the five round mag when I need to be more discrete, but I put an 7rd mag as a back up. Easily concealed for 13rd of 45 (+1 in the chamber). I typically use hornady XTP, I’m out in the country so feral dogs and tweakers are the main issue, and the XTP gives plenty of penetration. I haven’t had any issues with recoil either, but to be fair and not to brag just to be honest, I have 18.5inch arms and incline dumbbell press 220lb (110X2) 8 – 10 reps. Given that I don’t find my 44mag Taurus that bad, when others refuse to shoot it. It’s also very accurate – both are actually. It is kinda funny putting 400rd through a 44mag at the range and the looks I get. Cop that was at the range a couple years back when I was shooting told me his brother had just bought one and broke his nose the first time he shot it.

    One guy on here said he would rather carry a 357 with speed loaders. I guess you could train on speed loaders, but why? I carried a 357 lcr for years. Great revolver, but it didn’t stand up to 2 years of in the pocket carry and started falling apart. I used a Desantis in the pocket holster, and the finish was gone, so I sold it to the local pawn shop. Besides, it’s much easier to slam a mag than punish yourself with speed loaders. I didn’t even bother with extra ammo when carring the lcr.

    If I got another revolver I’d honestly go with GP100, SP101, or Redhawk. You can’t break them.

    My other carry is a Nano. It’s okay, but really concealable. And I’m a Beretta fan so… Granted their new offerings don’t really have the same appeal as the their classics.

    I’ve also been mulling over getting the 4inch version of the XDS, but haven’t actually seen one in person yet. It is getting about Christmas time though…

  64. Update here. Please do not be offended, Florida Gun Supply – you folks are great! For those who want a “pinky” mag floorplate, go “pistolgear.com”. These folks sell no pistols/firearms. Rather, they carry a huge variety of parts & accessories for Springfield handguns. You will find the XDs mag extensions here, as well as MANY more “goodies” for your favorite Springfield. Further update, passed the 1,000 round mark with my XDs (150 at one session). Feeds and functions with everything I have put in it. I, also am not a large person; 5’9″ & 200. After the 150 session – did either hand hurt? Nope! Either hand? Yep, I practice weak-hand shooting often. Who knows when the weak hand may be the only functional one? XDs, gotta’ love ’em!

  65. ‘m know I’m late to the party so to speak, but having owned an XDs9 and with a son who had a XDs,45, I’m pretty familiar with both. My own experience was that I could nail whatever I aimed at with the 45 and couldn’t hit anything consistently with the 9. We both wound up selling the guns, but I just ordered a .40. I shot a friends and it was sweet.

  66. I have had my xds 45 for almost a year now and never had an issue until I added a Galloway 125% power spring. The gun kicks so hard you can’t hold it tight enough for it to rack properly so it stove pipes every few rounds. I had few friends try it out to make sure i wasn’t just being a wimp but they had same issue. So I swapped back Springs and not an issue. I would recommend leaving the gun as is. Already set up perfect. 5/5 from me. I wouldn’t carry any other pocket 45.

  67. I live n Alaska. I and my daughter carry the XDS for outdoor carry with Buffalo Bore 255 hard cast. Expensive ammo to prove in the firearm but worth it.

    I value the grip safety. I know of a dozen negligent shots fired with Glock and Glock like triggers typically in non-holster carry. Tragically one of a mother who placed her Glock loaded purse in a shopping cart and her child was shot with it, keys caught in the trigger (child survived) another in Alaska of a pocket carry went bad and shot another patron of the restaurant. Cause unreported, etc.

    The XDS I have and the one my daughter has are reliable and more than accurate enough for the task required. Importantly they are of a weight to always be with us. Hers is the 4 inch barrel version. Mine is the shorter version but I am looking for a now out of production 4 inch barrel as well.

    I have the springs changed every 500 rounds compliments of Springfield which is running about four times a year. Covered under warranty. Nice. At the range use the extended grip magazines as well as the 5+ one in chamber magazines. Very manageable for a couple of hundred rounds, including qualifier drills. We are both very happy with the XDS.

  68. The XDS is probably the best ccw that I have carried so far. Compact lightweight easy to conceal and a whole lot safer to carry than a Glock. The capacity doesn’t bother me as the average is that the first 3 rounds determine who walks away. Yes after you fire a few mags you might feel like you have caught a small hammer, practicing in tac gloves all but eliminated this though. Definitely not a starter 45 though but highly recommend this pistol for everyday ccw for stopping power and ease of carry.

  69. I carried a 1911 colt 45 in Viet Nam for the stopping power that it had, and for the accuracy, hence after renting and firing an SDS 45 I knew that it was what I would carry.
    Even if they are wearing a vest it will knock them down. Not saying penetrate but they will be hurting.

  70. i just bought a 1st gen xds45 and was told it had the recall fixed. with so many other problems reading the 1st generation version here, i do not know what recalled was fixed to my new xds45 besides just seeing a roll pin in the grip safety. I was also told it had the powderriverprecision spring kit to help the heavy trigger pull minus the long firing pin spring. now it has a 4.5 – 5lbs pull. it has roughly 500rds to it from previous owners.

    i will test it with 200rds of 45acp soon but are there any other concerns with the 1st gen xds45?


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