ArmaLite AR-50 review

Nick reviews the Armalite AR-50 .50 BMG rifle at TTAG …

The AR-50 was designed to do one thing and do it well: hit targets at extreme ranges. According to their 1999 press release, the rifle is an ” . . . economical, accurate rifle for shooters interested in the challenges of long range shooting.” And that’s all it does. It’s a highly specialized piece of equipment with limited use. But where it’s useful, it’s perfect. It’s precisely the right tool for the job: punching precision holes in far away targets.

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.


  • Ry0ne

    I’ve had the pleasure of shooting an Armalite 50. Alot less recoil than one would expect, because of all the weight, the swiveling bipod, shooting prone, etc.

    Drilled a 1/2 steel plate at 660 yards like it was rice paper. Can reach out and touch someone at 2x that range easy.

  • SpudGun

    At just over $3k, the ArmaLite is definitely at the affordable end of the .50 cal market.

    As much as I’d love to have a .50 rifle, I just can’t overcome the obstacles – cost of ammo, finding a range, lugging the thing around, etc. – but mainly, not really having a use for one.

    Still, a very good review, I might have to start checking out Nick’s website more often.

  • drewogatory

    I’m so torn on these mega caliber rifles. If I had a place to shoot I’d buy/build one in a second, but since I’m not limited by the military supply chain probably not in .50 BMG. It should be really easy on brass so I’d pick something a little more interesting to reload like the 406 or 416. I haven’t researched bullet selection tho, so maybe the .50 has a big advantage there. You must have to buy powder by the freaking 55 gallon drum tho! :). Primers can’t be cheap either.

  • Wharthog

    I recently purchased one NIB for investment purpose only. After further inspection of craftsmanship, I may shoot it? I have several firearms and have come to the conclusion that simplicity and quality, equals dependability and accuracy. I’m very confident that this gun will be passed to my children’s children, long after I am gone. That’s the best investment ever. If you get a chance to own a 50 BMG in today’s market, do it! Because in tomorrows market it may not be possible.