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Ruger may have gone back to the future when it chambered its new-for-2020 Ruger-57 handgun in 5.7x28mm (aka 5.7×28 FN), a round that has mostly languished for 30 years, but which is seeing a blip of interest in recent introductions.

Developed by FN back in 1989, the 5.7x28mm cartridge is similar in shape to the commercial .221 Fireball cartridge, but the two are not interchangeable.

Long known for its use in the FN FiveseveN handgun as well as FN’s personal-defense weapons, such as the P90 and the PS90 the 5.7 was intended to replace the 9x19mm Parabellum pistol cartridge for NATO use. The 5.7x28mm weighs only half what the 9mm does, allowing a soldier to carry double the amount of ammunition. Magazine capacity is also substantially higher.

FNH-USA Five-seveN FDE. Photo courtesy FN.

At SHOT Show 2020, the .224-caliber cartridge has already been introduced in the aforementioned Ruger-57, (see TTAG’s full review here). Ruger’s involvement alone may broaden the round’s appeal beyond what FN was able to achieve, but others have also given the 5.7 a try recently.

Ruger 57. Photo courtesy Ruger.

CMMG, for instance, has has released its 5.7 AR Conversion Magazine, which holds 40 rounds of 5.7x28mm and is designed to fit and function in a mil-spec AR-15 lower receiver when paired with CMMG’s 5.7x28mm Radial Delayed Blowback upper receiver.

CMMG Banshee 300 Mk4 57x28mm. Photo courtesy CMMG.

CMMG offers a complete line of firearms in Banshee and Resolute models that are designed for 5.7 AR Conversion Magazines. Each is built with CMMG’s Mk4 lower receiver and a dedicated 5.7x28mm Radial Delayed Blowback upper receiver and ship with one 5.7 AR Conversion Magazine. The magazines are $40 each.

And now Diamondback has jumped into the 5.7 pool with their new-for-2020 DBX57BGB, a semi-auto locked breech, dual-gas-piston pistol with an 8-inch barrel. It has a Magpul Handstop Kit and comes with a 20-round Five-seveN-compatible magazine. The brace is a rear Picatinny mounted, side-folding style. TTAG has shot this item as well, and as soon as the review is published, we’ll have the link here.

Diamondback DBX57BGB. Photo courtesy of Diamondback.

I’ve shot the 5.7 in the FN handgun and the PS90, as well as a 57Center PDW, and have loved it in all of them. The round has been superbly accurate in everything I’ve shot, and its performance in ballistic gelatin was eye-opening in terms of penetration. Its cost per round has always been a big drawback when shooting it against a 22 WRM pistol such as a Kel-Tec PMR30, but perhaps these new companies’ interest in it will improve the ammo selection and pricing.

57Center PDW 5.7x28mm Upper. Photo for TTAG by Woody.



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  1. Isn’t that CMMG Banshee 300 Mk4 57x28mm a pistol?

    Isn’t it illegal to use the pistol stabilizing brace as a rifle stock?

    • As long as you don’t modify it, a brace is a brace regardless of where you hold it. Years ago, ATF had a different opinion, but they’ve since reversed themselves.

      • Yep. The ATF reversed itself and ruled that as long as the brace isn’t modified, and is installed in the manner the manufacturer intended, then temporarily placing it against your chest meat from time to time doesn’t change the design and intention of the brace.

  2. Great gun idea but no reason it can’t be MSRP $499 it’s just another polymer striker fire not like t’s any new cutting edge tech here

    • Glock 57 when?

      The low recoil does make the operation a bit trickier than the normal Browning short recoil mechanism allows for. I am basing this on the fact that both the FN and Ruger are delayed blowback of some sort rather than the normal tilting barrel.

    • You always add such insightful and expansive comments to the mix. Not that I give a shit about your opinion but you could at least flesh out what drives you to make such proclamations about this round.

    • How many 5.7 rounds do you think you could take before it would stop you from your attack against someone suing this crap load? 10? 20? 100? Then you should upload a video of you proving it.

    • I have one of their 12 inch uppers and I’m never selling it 🙂

      They had a great product… not sure what happened

      • I think it might have been an FFL issue. I know the ATF might be making them a “firearm” because the ammo is on the top rather than the bottom.

  3. 9mm is quickly going to go the way of .40. It’s heyday is long over. 5.7 is smaller, lighter, faster, sleeker, shinier, smarter, and newer. The big, fat, dumb, slow 9mm rounds of early last century tech will not be able to keep up with 5.7’s growing superior performance.

    • With today’s technology, 5.7 bullets are quickly outpacing the performance of ancient rounds such as the .50 BMG, .30-06 and .45 ACP. The limited adaptability of older, more stupider cartridges has clearly sounded the death knell for anything developed before America Online.

      Long Live 5.7!

      • Nate,. Really? You’re going to compare 5.7 to .50 BMG? You have got to be kidding. The .50 BMG round reaches from my wrist to the end of my middle finger. A 30-06 I the length of of my middle finger. They shoot 500 and 150 grain bullets respectively. 5.7 is less than the length of my pinky. It’s a stupid little round. But you go ahead and carry it. Some idiot will..

      • Dirty thoughts…And though statistics don’t matter to the individual, being able to put more rounds on target matters in a gunfight. Higher capacity and easier to control. A .357 magnum or .40 S&W will stop a threat in one shot, statistically, but thry’re not necessarily the ideal rounds.

        • And the 5.7 would have some of the same draw-backs as a .357, viz. loud and likely to temporarily blind you with a fireball, especially indoors.

      • Unless the person attacking you is wearing body armor. I don’t know the stats on that, but I’m thinking the garden variety home invader or similar is unlikely to be wearing armor.

        • It just brings a tear to my eye to read other people throwing off on these 6.5 fad cartridges. I love you guys 😢😂🇺🇸

        • “The only newer Cartridge I can get behind I’m growing popularity is the 10mm.”

          The new 10mm Creedmoor will rule them all…

  4. Said it before and I’ll said it again, can’t afford to add another cartridge to my limited shooting budget, let alone one as high cost as the 5.7x28mm.

    That said, variety is a good thing. Gun makers and ammo manufacturers should absolutely be doing stuff like this. Wish I could have been at a Shot Show Range Day to try out lots of new guns, whether I’d ever want one or be able to afford it (let alone feed it) or not.

    Guns are fun, shoot’n them is a hoot.

    Need more of that in the world today!

    • A couple years ago some local shop owners told me they’d been waiting a year for some 5.7 ammo. They carried 1911s or xdM in .45

  5. I’m starting to sense a “hot cartridge of the year” pattern.

    Last year it was all about the Valkyrie. But after seeing a bunch a problems with accuracy, the buzz seems to have dried up completely.

    I wonder if it’s making any kind of comeback this year.

  6. The 5.7 out of a compact ir subcompact pistol is little different from a .22WMR. Out of a 5″ barrel it isn’t as good as .38 Special. It has no capacity advantage either now that you have 9mm pistols with 19-21 rounds. The 5.7 is going nowhere. As mentioned in the Ruger review those SWAT units that adopted the cartridge have ditched their P90s.

    Why the boon in 5.7? The industry has run out of new ideas and sees 5.7 as niche filler for people wanting something different. How many 9mm/.40/.45 pistols can the monied gun buying public want to own?

    • And while it weighs almost a pond less than a 1911 it is dimensionally about the same so all of a sudden everybody who declares a G19 too big to carry is now going to carry a 1911 sized pistol with inferior ballistics to a 9mm fired from a 4″ barrel?

    • I’m awaiting the resurgence of the .218 Bee! My scoped, Taurus Raging Bee is a tack driver, and hell on gophers! Even those wearing soft body armor.

      • Dude, that is honestly one of the coolest revolvers ever, and I’ve never even seen one in person. That’s so cool you have one!

    • My guess is…..5.7 is going …..to the range.

      Ruger – Big pistol…..looks cool…adjustable sights…..20 rounds….shoots flat at handgun distance.

      You could use it varmint hunting easily.

      Reminds me of the S&W model 53 in 22 Jet. 1600-1700 fps withal 40 grain buller.

      Lots of fun to shoot but it was LOUD. (Plugs under muffs for me).

      People like little bullets moving like stink out of a full sized handgun.

      May have no purpose other than fun……I’m fine with that.

        • Well…yeah.

          I’ve killed many an armadillo, snake, possum, and raccoon witha a 38.

          148 wadcutter is my go-to bullet.

          I believe in equal opportunity for calibers.

      • It would make a great varmint cartridge for a bolt gun with a 20″ barrel. 5.7 is to 22WMR as 38 Super is to 38 Special

  7. For people with limited strength, the 5.7 may be a good defensive alternative. However to maintain energy, hot loads and long barrels are required.
    Ammunition should it be mass produced should cost less than 5,56.
    Could be a more reliable replacement for 22 mag.
    Could be a good varmint round, plinker, and defense combo.

    • Yeah, but then the good stuff got taken away. I know there’s expensive boutique stuff out there and there’s still the odd chance of getting SS198 pulled bullets for $1 a piece at gun shows, but with the currently available commercial loads and the difficulties the 5.7 produces for reloaders it doesn’t stand a chance unless something changes.

      • Hopefully the renewed interest in it drives some innovation. It’s a round with a lot of potential you can tell is almost there.
        It’s the only modern round that really makes sense to share between a rifle and a pistol.

        If it was cheap I can easily see it replacing 5.56 for the majority of shooters. It’s lighter and quieter and possibly cheaper than 5.56 while poking the same holes in paper 100 yards away and killing poodles just as well.

        • “It’s the only modern round that really makes sense to share between a rifle and a pistol.”

          What about 10mm, or .30 Carbine, or .300 BLK?
          And for revolver rounds, you’ve got plenty of choices, some more modern than others, including .22 Magnum, .327 Federal Magnum, 357 Magnum, .41 Magnum, .44 Magnum, 454 Casull, .460 S&W Magnum, .500 S&W Magnum, etc.

        • 30 carbine is longer than 5.7 which is already pushing it in a handgun frame. 300blk won’t fit into a handgun.
          Pointy bullet is something I think you need to justify a rifle. 10mm is great but isn’t flat enough shooting to work in a carbine.
          Same with .357mag which in not considering modern since it’s made for revolvers.

          .357 out of a carbine might defeat soft armor, but I’m not sure for what range.

    • It can punch through armor, but its effects on ballistic gel are anemic. Price of the ammo will have to get below 223 before the cartridge gets any traction. Price of the pistols will have to come down too.

  8. I have a 22TCM from RIA and it is very loud. It does very little recoil and velocity the same or higher than 5.7×28.

    • Thank you.

      I believe the .22 TCM is a better choice for handguns because the overall length of a cartridge is shorter than 5.7 x 28mm. That translates into reasonable sized grips. And yet velocities are basically the same.

      I would take .22 TCM over 5.7 x 28mm any day.

      • For a handgun yes the tcm is the better choice. To share with a carbine the pointy bullets on the 5.7 make more sense to me.

  9. I had a chance to buy a pistol chambered in .221 fireball years ago. It was a bolt action affair made by remington i think. I passed because of the cost and relative scarcity of ammo choices. The 5.7 is in the same category at the moment and ironically nearly the same concept.

    Eventually one of these fads will catch on. Meanwhile we have plenty of choices in other calibers which are readily available and cost much less.

  10. Lets settle this once and for all, forget any and all bias reviews, advertisments, paid endorsements, and the ballistic gel tests where the 5.7 got it’s butt kicked. Just look at the math.
    Since the .40, 10mm, 357 mag, and 45 are vastly more powerful lets just compare the 5.7 to the century old 9mm. Here are the stats on both of their hottest loads in pistol barrels. 4″ for the 9mm and I’ll even give the 5.7 the advantage of it’s factory 4.8″ barrel. Bullets for comparison are the top of the line S4M and the buffalo bore 115gr. Even though the guys in the five and seven forums say they are not getting the advertised 2600 fps we will give them the full benifit of the doubt and assume the advertising is accurate despite the fact that people have recorded 2400-2500fps in their crono.
    —————–5.7mm S4M—-9mm
    Energy———-405ft/lbs—–500 ft/lbs—Advantage 9mm
    Momentum——-10lbs———23lbs—–Huge Advantage 9mm
    Frontal Area-.—-.0394——–.1007——Huge Advantage 9mm
    Sectional Density-.08———–.130—–Large Advantage 9mm
    Now forget the ultra high performance hard to find ammo and lets focus on the stuff you can buy over the counter at any halfway respectable local gun shop.
    9mm Carbon 115gr JHP and the SS195LF
    Energy————255ft/lbs——466ft/lbs—Large Advantage 9mm
    Momentum——— 7lbs———–22lbs—–Huge advangage 9mm
    Frontal Area——–.0394———.1007—–Huge advantage 9mm
    Sectional density—-.08———–.130——Large advantage 9mm
    By every mesurment we know of the 9mm is superior to the soft tissue performance of the 5.7×28, I have asked on many occasions for the 5.7 junkies to explain to me what magic energy somehow makes it more deadly and nobody can explain it to me, I wounder why
    Even the most hardcore 5.7 fan should understand why I am so skeptical of it’s “advantages” over conventional handgun rounds.
    If you do the same comparison with the 40, 10mm, 357 Sig or any other modern handgun round the comparison get REAL bad for the 5.7×28.
    Cheese demilitarized ammo, barely suitable for self defense, hardly affordable for target practice? Tnx, no.
    Make a modern red-dot and brace/stock (e.g. FAB Defense) ready striker fired pistol with hi-cap double-stack magazine, 6″ BBL in 7.62×25 Tokarev and you win the fortune. I predict bunch of hipsters unsuccessfully trying to trade their R57 for G19 by the end of the year. Another Ruger’s fail.

    • John Saxtorph,

      All handgun calibers and loads out of common handguns (with the possible exception of hot .44 Magnum loads) have very poor ability to physically incapacitate a determined human attacker unless you hit your attacker’s central nervous system.

      The primary role and appeal of handgun calibers and common handguns is that they are relatively easy/comfortable to carry at all times, are usually very good at psychologically stopping attackers, and can usually physically incapacitate a determined attacker with several hits to the body (even without hits to the attacker’s central nervous system).

      With that in mind, pretty much any handgun caliber will serve well for their intended role.

      Having said all that, the primary appeal of 5.7 x 28mm is that it defeats ballistic vests (without hard plates). While it is true that it will only poke relatively small holes in someone wearing a ballistic vest, it will poke holes in them. And that is enough for most attackers to break-off their attack. As you hopefully already know, there is no commonly available 9mm Luger load which can defeat ballistic vests.

      As is almost always the case in life, you never get something for nothing. Want a relatively large bullet with respectable “stopping power” that is reasonably convenient to carry and has manageable blast and recoil? Then you have to give up ability to defeat ballistic vests. Want a handgun that is reasonably convenient to carry and has manageable recoil (not sure about blast)? Then you have to give up relatively large bullets with respectable “stopping power”.

    • John- My 5.7 will go through soft body armor and any street or state thug wearing it, whereas the 9mm will not. The 9mm is fine for unarmored threats, but I belive in the 2nd Amendment, which means I have to be prepared to defend my family from a street thug or a state thug, who thinks defending my wife and kids is only a government privilege.

  11. The Ruger is certainly better looking than the FN (which I always though was a bit of an ugly duckling). Unfortunately, the people who would benefit the most from the lighter recoil of the 5.7×28 also tend to have smaller hands, and would have a tough time getting a good grip on these pistols.

    • Yes, someone finally said it – that pistol looks ugly and feels cheap in person. The rental I shot had a problem with the mag disconnect (feature!) and you had to hold the mag in to get it to fire. Also, doesn’t 5.7 need the P90 length barrel to reliably pierce armor?

  12. So a expensive, modern day version of the .22 Magnum is King of the 2020…? An unproven combat or self defense round…. Probably need 21 round magazines just to stop a pissed off 6’1″ tall or bigger, aggressive Combatant…Nothing like someone getting plinked to stop….

    • Oh man, daughter and I are working through that series again on Hulu. Was hoping no one would bring this up. See what you did there, I went and outed myself….

      BTW, I shoot .223 in a 10″ Contender. Loud and fiery, like a good burrito. Dang, did it again…

  13. Notice how TTAG is still ignoring Excel Arms and their Accelerator pistols, which have been chambered in 5.7 for at least 10 years. And, they cost around 400 bucks. And, they look awesome.

    This is the second TTAG article that acts like Ruger is some big time trailblazer by making a pistol in 5.7.

    Yeah, Excel is not some big time advertiser like Ruger, but still, why the bias by a site that supposedly is into “truth about guns?”

  14. Might as well just use cash for your targets if your balling enough to take these guns out regularly. Punching Andrew Jackson out of 20s lol like those carnival and jubilee games with the bb guns to shoot out the star. I suppose if I hit the Powerball I would buy a couple guns chambered in it but until then I’ll stick to what’s feasible for me to play with.

  15. I’m looking forward to it and the new gold dot hp. Not one dang thing says I gotta have a reason or it’s gotta be better than this or that. I’m gonna because America 🇺🇸

  16. I love it. I’m also a sucker for bottle necked pistol cartridges. Wasted a bunch of money on .357 sig (got me into reloading as a side effect) and really looking forward to getting one of them new Rugers. Long live questionably practical things for guys like me!

  17. Years ago when Federal started making 5.7 it was proclaimed that the round would be less expensive because now there was another manufacturer making it. Instead it jumped in price. Whereas before I could reasonably walk into a store and buy FN 5.7 for $19.99 a box, it’s now $29.99 a box in most stores, and the Federal is $24-$26.
    Also, the Federal rounds suck. I never had an issue with my PS90 with the FN stuff. The Federal fails to provide enough power for reliable extraction/ejection sometimes, and it has failed to feed a bunch as well.

  18. .45 GAP: The Second Coming of the .45?

    Obama: The Second Coming Of The Messiah?

    Tesla Model 3: The Second Coming Of Sportscars?

    ….and other headlines written by apoplectic TTAG editors.

    5.7×28 is the answer to a question that was never asked.

  19. Can Savage produce the 5.7 bolt gun they announced a few years ago. How about a Ruger American Ranch Rifle in 5.7
    AR pistol in 5.7.
    Cheaper ammo. A couple of companies have said they were going to produce it but never did. S&B and MagTec I think. Hopefully they will now.

    Any Chance that H&K will sell 4.6 commericially?

    Bring back the 7.62×25

  20. If it were priced competitively as other pistol calibers I still don’t get the appeal unless you’re using bullets designed for armor-defeating capability. And in that case, it’s still pretty niche. It’s not like 5.56 and similar carbine-capable bullets won’t go right through soft armor anyway. It does represent an increase in capacity, I guess, if 17 rounds isn’t enough for a handgun.

    The article talks about the round being especially accurate- what does that mean? Is the author shooting a 5.7 at 200 yards? Because at pistol and PDW ranges there’s no difference in accuracy between this and other modern bullets. A .380 is just as accurate at 20 yards. Both the shooter’s ability and the gun’s accuracy are going to have far more effect than the bullet.

  21. there are a lot of different rounds out there because there are a lot of different people. and they all fit some ones needs. they all have there purpose and I guess they will meet a personal need. I think the 5.7 will find some homes. and in a rifle for someone who is in confined area it would work well, ditto for the 22tcm. and I am sure someone will provide pointy bullets for it if needed. 38 spec, 357 mag both great rounds. I also like the 9mm luger, and don’t fading anytime soon. the 30 tok is a good round, a bottle necked 30 m1 carbine with good ballistics. very good for personal defense with a hollow point. 30 m1 carbine, also good for personal defense with both soft points and hollow points. and would like to see more affordable options offered for these. and the 218 bee? well if someone would make a nice lever action for it ( affordable) like the old Winchester m65 ( like a m92) I would love to have it.


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