Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


  • vereceleritas

    I think I saw this once on Futureweapons a few years back but haven’t heard anything about it since. I think it’d be better off chambered for 9×19 or .45acp. Maybe even 5.7×28 like the P90.

  • JKEverett

    I agree with vereceleritas; from what I’ve gathered HK is trying to duplicate the performance of the 5.7×28 cartridge with their 4.6×30 – it seems like it would be a much better decision – even if just for marketing – to use a more common caliber…

  • Matt Groom

    The H&K MP7 has the distinction of being the world’s most powerful pellet gun. As far as PDWs go, it’s huge. You can strap one to your hip, but you could strap any SMG to your hip and nobody does that, because handguns are smaller and more practical, not to mention dramatically more powerful than these are. I just don’t know what’s going through those German minds.

    • Fresh

      It goes through layers of Kevlar like a knife through butter, that’s what Germans are thinking.

  • Don

    I’ve been thinking about this kind of thing lately. The worthiness of the caliber kind of depends on what the gun is designed for. I’m not saying what the marketing division of the manufacturer calls it (e.g. ‘varmint gun’), but what applications did the designers have in mind to begin with. The 4.6x30mm has about twice the energy of a .38 special about 3x the velocity. This kind of thing would be more than adequate, if not a prudent choice for interior security workers at an installation which already has exterior security. Something like a federal office building or state government building, or embassy security. Also, quietly killing targets while in crowds at close or point-blank ranges comes to mind. Suppressed small calibers have always been preferred for that, and this could give you the ability to put more of them in the target faster if need be.


  • Carl

    If the bullet really tumbles on impact as advertised it could be good though. And with low recoil you can put lots of bullets on target quickly.

  • I remember when you took this pic at SHOT…good thing there were three of us there to figure out how to get the suppressor back on…no repeat of the Gemtech incident!

  • AP

    Armor piercing capability and triple fragment bullets but yeah, I hear you. I still say there’s no replacement for displacement.

  • Ryan K.

    This weapon is actually meeting with fairly moderate success, and has been purchased in small numbers by the US special operation command and many of the alphabet soup agencies tactical and defense units.

    Major purchasers I believe have been the UK ministry of the interior for Scotland Yard anti-terror units (Central Operations Specialist Firearms Command), MoD Police and numerous other units as a future replacement for their long in the tooth MP5A2 & A3 (SF)’s issued to Authorised Firearms Officer’s and others.

    They have had major success with the internal German government market with large volume sales to the army (Bundeswehr) and federal police. Norway has purchased thousands (almost as many as the 416) to complement their new 416’s and completely replace their MP5’s. Also, Ireland national police units have adopted it to replace their MP5’s.

  • SpudGun

    Following on from Ryan K’s comments, I also believe the UK’s Civil Nuclear Police Constabulary – basically cops that look after nuclear power stations, etc. are toting the MP7.

    It’s low profile, lightweight, has superior accuracy / range to a similar pistol caliber weapon, penetrates soft body armor and can be used at both a distance and CQB.

    From a financial point of view, it’s certainly cheaper to equip a force with a cross platform weapon then seperate pistols, SMGs, rifles, etc. and all of the different ammo, magazines, spare parts, cleaning kits and what have you.

  • CMathews

    Let umarex make a .22 magnum version… I’d be all over that haha!

  • jdun1911

    What US Special Operation use the HK-MP7? Like Matt pointed out it is the world’s most powerful pellet gun.

    • DEVGRU, you know that little seal team that killed some guy named UBL uses it to name one.

  • CMathews, that’s in the works.

  • Stu C.

    I have to concur with Mr. Groom. With a cartridge that small the chassis of the weapon is more than cumbersome. The only reason people are re-equipping with it vice the mp5 is because hk doesn’t make the mp5 anymore.

  • jdun1911

    Subgun are dead, IMO. It been replace with SBR that chamber 5.56.

  • Redchrome

    The MP7 is designed to be a PDW, not a close-quarters fight-stopper. PDWs are for rear-echelon troops who want to avoid a firefight rather than win one. As near as I can tell, it’s much the same thing in principle as the old Skorpion… you stick it out the hatch of your tank, spray & pray gangsta style, and scream “get off my tank! get off my tank! get off my tank!” while you’re disabled and being overrun.

    Don’t ask me why police forces are using it, other than that they’re susceptible to shiny marketing and whiz-bang high-speed-low-drag the-cool-kids-don’t-have-one-yet & you-taxpaying-peons-can’t-have-one factor.

    • Cahal

      Irish Gardai {Police} use it to combat the increasing use of ‘bulletproof’ vests by criminals.

  • Carl
  • I’ve always viewed the mouse-caliber PDWs as solutions looking for a problem. In reality, they strike me more as a way to try to sell another weapon system and, more importantly, to extract royalties from the production of the inevitable proprietary cartridge each company seems to base it’s weapon on.

    • ^^^^ Gregory was with me when I took the photos.

      Greg, have you guys at SMC every gotten an MP7?

  • We’ve never moved one and, to my knowledge, neither have any of the other Class III dealers I know. They are, of course, restricted to military/law enforcement sales and we’ve never had any inquiries on them. Since we would need a formal demonstration request, we have never been able to purchase one as a sample. I think we have a Robinson XCR Micro coming in, hopefully it will arrive before our winter machinegun shoot this month! Slightly shorter than the MP7, about 1kg heavier but can be configured in 5.56mm, 6.8SPC or 7.62x39mm…what’s not to love?

    • Gregory, awesome 🙂 Yea, the trend for PDW seems to be rifle calibers.

  • Gregory, what do you think of the Magpul PDW that they had at SHOT a couple years back? I know they’ve pushed onto the back burner, but at least it wasn’t some fancy cartridge (it’s 5.56) and fed off of regular old M16 mags.

  • jdun1911


    Personal Defense Weapon doesn’t mean throw the gun at your enemy and run while getting shot in the back.

    A AR15 with a 10.5″ barrel that chamber 5.56 is a much better choice then the MP-7. At least you have a fighting chance.

  • While a nifty design and extremely compact, the Magpul PDR suffers from two issues. One, it shares the biggest weakness that plagues EVERY bullpup design: the awkwardness of magazine changes which forces the operator to lose the sight picture and requires an excess of movement to accomplish. Second, as it was a side-ejection design (combined with the rearward location of the ejection port in a bullpup design) it cannot be used left-handed except by the brave and/or foolish (unless a left-side ejection model is offered) which makes it a liability in urban combat situations where weak-side shooting to take advantage of cover (or due to injury) may be necessary.

    Greater flexibility and customization is available at a lower cost by using M2 (Military Manufacturing) Corporation’s M16X (4″ barrel) and M16C (6″ barrel) uppers which is the basis for the FERFRANS PDW ( I can attest to the durability of the M16C upper personally as I’ve watched 300-rounds (3 Betamags) dumped through one multiple times under greatly varying weather conditions (and I’ve dumped a few through myself) and I *know* the owner has kept it scrupulously clean…NOT! I do know that the U.S. Secret Service was using the M16X upper at one point carried with a 20-round mag inserted and one Betamag on the operator…it enabled a compact weapon which could supply a large volume of fire. The one big strength is that anyone trained on the M16/M4 platform needs no retraining to transition a PDW based on the M2 Corps. upper so reflex actions in usage and failure drills are virtually identical.

  • Carl

    The alleged awkwardness of changing the magazine on a bullpup keeps coming up as a major reason not to use it. I suspect this is mostly a training issue. And you can only use the “problem” of re-training so many times to stay away from ever improving technology. Otherwise you’ll still be using the AR in two hundred years when everybody else has long since switched to frikkin’ laser guns or whatever the supreme technology of the time.

    I agree that the ejection issue needs to be solved. Fortunately this has been done in at least two designs: the Kel-Tec RFB and the FN F2000. And more will likely follow.

    4.1″ barrel with 5.56NATO. 63grains @ 1620fps. That’s pistol level energy. With a tremendous noise and muzzle blast I’m sure. And it’s still a lot longer than that Magpul PDW, which has a decent length barrel.

  • Keep in mind that the bullet is designed to penetrate CRISAT at 100m distance… while still being able to use it like an oversized pistol.

    Show me a 9mm or .45 that can do that…

  • Matt Groom

    Show me a member of Al Quesadilla that’s wearing CRISAT body armor. The people the West are in conflict with don’t wear body armor, they wear bombs.

  • I have never been able to get any detailed information but VBR-Belgium claims to manufacture 9mm and .45 AP (they use a 6.3mm hardened penetrator) as well as their own proprietary 7.92x24mm (Glock 17&19 and 1911 caliber conversions available) using the same penetrator. What it will penetrate and at what distances I’m not sure, I haven’t been able to find any detailed information.

    Frankly, if I’m shooting 100m with an oversized pistol in a micro caliber (and depending on hits) my planning was faulty.

  • jdun1911

    9mm and .45AP pentrate CRISAT. Not sure if it can do up to 100m tho. Probably not.

  • jdun1911

    Don’t know why the google link direct it back to the main page. Enter this in the google search.

    crisat body armor 9mm ap

  • Mark

    Quote: “CRISAT combat body armour vest defeats 9mm NATO ball at the muzzle.”

    Source: “The Application of an Innovative Grenade Warhead to Defeat Combat Body Armour” by D W Leeming

  • jdun1911: As for US military users, NSWDG has put out many public solicitations for MP7 accessories and spare parts. The US Navy also purchases a fair amount of 4.6x30mm ammunition.

    Gregory: Is M2 Corp. still in business? They seem to have dropped off the radar a few years ago.

  • Daniel: Not sure what is going on with M2 Corp., they were difficult to get in touch with in the best of times…they became almost impossible to contact several years ago as you note. The rumor at the time was that the government was basically purchasing everything they made and, like many companies, they simply began blowing off all other business to suck at Uncle Sam’s teat. Not sure if that’s true since one would suspect that we’d be seeing more of their uppers in use by the feds by now but who knows? I wish I’d thought about it while in Vegas for SHOT since they were/are located there…I’d like to pick up a spare gas tube or three for an upper we have.

  • Juergen

    The german Gun magazine “Visier” just published a ballistics test of the 4.6mm-round – as mentioned before, the steel-core bullets penetrate CRISAT (1.6mm Titaninum on top of 20 layers kevlar) with enough energy to cause serious injuries up to 200m(!) away. 9mm is stopped cold by CRISAT even at point blank range.

    The same bullets will also penetrate 10mm steel plates on normal pistol range, AND still penetrate 200mm gelatine… so if you’re thinking you can hide behind a car or a thin wall, think again.

  • Quaker

    I see that on this forum people who bash the MP-7 have never shot one. As someone who trains others on the weapon, you don’t know hat you’re missing. Outstanding weapon for it’s purpose

  • Tim

    Headshots don’t have to knock you over. For a good shooter, this gun/caliber is just as effective as any rifle, and 10 times easier to conceal.

    • Nick

      Headshot? you play too many video games…

  • Scott

    Matt Groom wrote:

    “The H&K MP7 has the distinction of being the world’s most powerful pellet gun. As far as PDWs go, it’s huge. You can strap one to your hip, but you could strap any SMG to your hip and nobody does that, because handguns are smaller and more practical, not to mention dramatically more powerful than these are. I just don’t know what’s going through those German minds.”

    I’m not sure how you came to the conclusion that any handgun in the world can penetrate CRISAT armor at 200m, let alone offer the same control AND suppression capability of this weapon. Granted, your typical “bad guy” won’t be wearing military-grade combat armor, but by extension, the penetration capability of the MP7 includes light cover. Not to mention that the 4.6x30mm round will not over-penetrate compared to more conventional SMGs and even some pistol calibres. As PDWs go, I don’t think there’s a better weapon system on the market currently, but only MIL/LE have access to it. The -only- reasonable complaint to be made about the MP7 is the relative inaccessibility of proprietary ammunition.

  • crisara722

    i dont know why american need a large caliber gun to be confident with, here in colombia those small caliber PDWs (specally the p90 and the five seven pistol) are very well liked by both criminals and security forces, the first ones love their capability to pierce body the body armor of VIP and cops, the second ones love to have a pistol with the piercing capabilities of a rifle.

  • Sgt.Wilson

    I have been lucky enough to be given and use the MP7 as primary at work, one flaw with the MP7 is the front grip is to short for my likings but its ok.