On the .300 AAC Blackout

Five_bullets

As a suppressor guy, I am an unashamed fan and early cheerleader of the .300 AAC Blackout. Major Pandemic at All Outdoor is not convinced

OK, so I feel like the guy in the room who doesn’t get the joke. Why was that funny, or, in this case, why is everyone so nuts over .300 AAC Blackout? I am really really quite confused by the widespread infatuation with the cartridge, and I really don’t get it even after owning and shooting the round.

First let me say I do get the idea of the cartridge, and in fact I used to shoot the original JD Jone’s SSK 300 Whisper that… well, AAC allegedly copied as the 300 Blackout. The SSK design cut down a piece of .223 brass and opened it up to load a .308 round in it, and powered it with about as much powder as I put pepper on my salad.

The .300 Whisper concept was proceeded by wildcat cartridges and by subsonic 7.62x39mm loads. It was not an original idea, but SSK deserves recognition of helping mainstream the concept of subsonic large caliber rifle loads. While .300 Whisper loads can be formed from .223/5.56mm cases, it is actually based on the  .221 Fireball. The main advantage of the .300 AAC Blackout is that it is SAAMI specced and so anyone can commercially manufacture ammunition bearing its name.


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.


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  • Julio

    The point of MP’s article seems to be that the fuss made over the cartridge is out of proportion to its benefits, which are only significant in a narrow role (suppressed subsonic hunting of medium game) and which even then are less than those offered by the .300 Whisper.

    I tend to agree that the rise of the .300 Blackout is a triumph of marketing over substance, but consumers buying the latest cool stuff is a big part of what keeps our society, and on a smaller scale, our sport, -more or less- afloat, so I’m glad to see that MP’s article doesn’t damn the .300BLK even as its author defends his choice not to use it.

    I look forward to a similar discussion of the 25-45 Sharps… though all of this is really just guilt-free philandering. After all, most of us are in a life-long relationship with the .223/5.56×45. Maybe we should it some more love..

    • Rusty Shackleford

      Not likely, According to Sharps’s own Data, the ballistics of 87gr @ 3000 fps and 1700 ft-lbs is from the 24″ bbl. Compare that to 6.8spc 90 gr from a 20″ bbl @ 2984 fps and more than 1700 ft-lbs. So, what’s the point?

    • Justice

      There’s so many benefits to this caliber that I get tired of explaining it to anyone who doesn’t seem to understand why 300BLK is an attractive and useful caliber esp to AR fanatics and REloaders.
      Good Marketing is always good, its the reason why something will succeed more likely in the longrun.
      I’m a fan of 300BLK; and while I’m also a fan of 7.62×39, it doesn’t work well in an AR platform.

  • Tt_ttf

    Socom is joining the 300blk band – sig is now chambering their m4’s in it

    I would say silenced big game is in their target types! ;-)

    • allannon

      I dunno; wouldn’t humans get classed as medium game?

      Just unusually _dangerous_ medium game. :D

      • Airman596

        Judging by what I saw in Afghanistan, I’d say varmint sized game. Scrawny little jihadists.

  • Eurocopter

    I would LOVE a custom built, integrally suppressed Rem 700 in .300blk… You guys over there gotta do something about your stupid laws regaring suppressors. No reason they should be this tighly controlled.

  • iksnilol

    I do get the point of the 300 BLK but I have no need for it. I am not an AR guy so I just use 7.62×39, much easier to get in my part of the world and much less expensive. Also same ballistics.

    • Dan

      for me being able to use the same lower for multiple calibers is a huge benefit. going between 556 and 300blk in seconds. in the case of 300blk i dont even have to change magazines.

      • iksnilol

        I know that, that is why I mentioned I am not an AR guy.

        if you primarily use an AR then 300 BLK is probably the bees knees. I do like 300 BLK since I can use the reloading data to reload subsonic 7.62×39, especially with fast powders so that I can use a short(er) barrel.

        • Dan

          why would you bother with subsonic 7.62×39 on AK? port pop is terrible, not worth the effort.

          • iksnilol

            Adjustable gas block, non vented gas tube or simply shrouding the gas block/tube are some solutions to this problem.

            I prefer solution number 2, non vented gas/piston tube. Though it can lead to overgassing which necesiates solution number 1 which at that point you will wonder why you didn’t go with solution 3.

            Jokes aside, it is pretty much a non-issue if you use your head.

          • iksnilol

            Get a non-vented gas tube or an adjustable gas block, you could also shroud it.

            It is a non issue if you use your head.

  • Joe Blackout

    “Subsonic rounds will still not cycle in an AR-15 action unless a suppressor is added or some odd builds specs are adhered to. For example, my preference for a 300 Blackout build would be a 16”+ barrel with pistol length gas system, ultra light weight YM carrier, and lightweight carbine buffer.”

    The accuracy of the linked article is questionable. I have no problem with 208/220 grain subs cycling suppressed or unsuppressed (if loaded correctly). Admittedly I have not tried 240 grain yet, but the author makes it sound like that’s your only choice in Subsonic.

    I’ve also used 125 and 150gr supersonic loads, and had no trouble with cycling with a heavy buffer in a 16in or 9in barrel.

    I’m not sure if this is just one of those guys that has a bone to pick with 300 AAC for whatever reason.

    • Dan

      “The 300 Blackout is a known to be problematic in un-suppressed AR-15s for all but the the hotly loaded 110gr rounds.”

      the author of the linked article is flat out wrong.

      i have done a number of 300blk builds and i have no problems running subs suppressed or unsuppressed. 16″ barrel, carbine gas.

      FWIW blackout is optimized for pistol length barrels.

      the author is just trolling, trying to be “edgy” and “cool” by going “against the fad”. and hoping that will get him more pageviews.

  • Seth Martin

    I’m not a suppressor guy, so I never really had a use for it. Especially when I can shoot 7.62×39 for much cheaper and get more or less the same performance.

    It is an interesting cartridge and seems like it’s selling well. Also, having options with regards to your choice of ammo is always a good thing.

    • http://www.jabarihunt.com/ Jabari Hunt

      Out of an AR reliably? I’m asking more out of intrigue than disbelief.

      • SM

        I shoot AK-style rifles for the most part. I don’t own an AR. Don’t really care for them. They aren’t bad rifles, I just like the AK’s more.

        • http://www.jabarihunt.com/ Jabari Hunt

          Gotcha! I like (and have owned) both for some years. I tend to lean towards the AR in general, but I like the 7.62×39 more than the 5.56. That is what attracts me to 300 BLK. Suppressed fire isn’t a biggie to me, but the ability to have 7.62×39 performance almost as controllable as the 5.56 is huge in my opinion!

          When I lived in PA I knew a guy that had an AR is 7.62×39. I loved the idea of it, but it was all sorts of unreliable. If not, I’d build one in a heartbeat and forget about 300 BLK.

        • Dan

          i was gonna say. 7.62×39 from an AR ain’t reliable. to get it running at all is a pile of hacks, bubblegum and bailing wire.

  • jam

    I am a fan because 300bo delivered where 6.8 failed in terms of a “simple” caliber changeover in the ar15 platform. In my opinion the ability to use the same magazines is huge. On top of that being able to cut 223 brass down is another added bonus. I understand that there are other calibers with more power, shoot flatter etc but 300bo has simplified the logistics of owning a non Walmart caliber and offers a good boost in power over the 556 with a neglegable difference in recoil. In the 0 to 300 arena with a short barrel I am very impressed.

  • Zugunder

    My dream is to see one day the detailed article with videos and stuff about comparison of .300 Blackout and 9×39 SP, with any weapon. I mean, i know numbers, i saw charts, but i wish to see them live face to face so to say :) i love them both (maybe 9×39 little bit more, but that’s not counts as it is probably patriotic love)
    ah, dreams dreams…

    • http://196800revolutionsperminute.blogspot.com/ Nathaniel F.

      .300 BLK subsonic, 9×39, and .45 ACP all have very similar trajectory (the biggest factor being velocity), .45 tends to have better energy deposition properties, as the .300 BLK subsonics do not yaw readily and will zip through a target, and 9×39 is the only one designed as a dedicated armor penetrator.

      A more formal comparison would be good to see, but I’m not sure what else it would tell you.

  • FinallyFree

    Use in AR-15/M4 platform only with barrel change. Similar to AK 30 cal ballistics, plus offers subsonic/suppressed capability without changing gas settings. Uses widely available .308 bullet and 5.56 cartridge. What is not to like??

    • http://196800revolutionsperminute.blogspot.com/ Nathaniel F.

      “What is not to like??”

      The 7.62×39-esque ballistics, I thought…

      Oh, and the magazine stack weight issue, and the completely new gas system dynamics.

      But I guess the subsonic ammo is kind of cool, even if it doesn’t do anything .45 ACP won’t do.

      • Raven

        It will do things better than .45ACP, though. The Hornady 208-grain A-MAX subsonic load (.300 Whisper, but there’s no real difference) has a ballistic coefficient of .648, or about triple the BC of a .45ACP 230-grain HydraShok.

        • http://196800revolutionsperminute.blogspot.com/ Nathaniel F.

          Which doesn’t make very much of a difference in terms of trajectory. The .300 Blackout with subsonic ammo has about 10 yards on .45 ACP from a trajectory standpoint, while depositing energy more poorly due to smaller frontal area.

          If the Blackout were designed for subsonic armor penetration, it would make much more sense, but it’s not.

          • Echo5Charlie

            No, and the .45 ACP has no supersonic brethren with a 650 meter effective range either.

            Try keeping your arguments within logical limits. As a “writer” of this website that should be your priority.

          • Jenkem Jones

            Thumbs down. I doubt you are doing long distance shooting with subsonic 300 BS.

          • Echo5Charlie

            No, but with a mag swap I am using supersonic at long range. Or I can even alternate super/sub in a mag. Imagine that!!!

            Perhaps you, also, should understand the 300 BLK before you try and sound smart.

            BTW, (not that you’d understand) but due to the sectional density difference the 300 BLK will defeat most ballistic mediums that were designed to stop conventional handgun rounds. Body armor, ballistic glass, etc. For the serious work that the 300 can do, that is a huge plus.

      • Dan

        except run reliably on an AR platform with a simple barrel change?

        i can also use my 30cal suppressor on it, the same suppressor for 300 blk sub/super as well as 308win and 300 win mag.

        not many suppressors can run 45acp and 300 win mag.

        • WeaponBuilder

          What suppressor do you have for 300win mag? I cannot decide yet, but will buy one this year…

          • JumpIf NotZero

            Surefire Socom if you want QD and precision. AAC 300-TM if you want thread on. AAC Mk13-SD if you’re made of money. Thunderbeast is ok, but expensive less engineering that the above three.

        • http://196800revolutionsperminute.blogspot.com/ Nathaniel F.

          .45 seems to run fine with blowback AR-15s, if you must have them in an AR-15 platform. For most sneaky snake type stuff, I sort of assumed you’d use a UMP or something, instead.

          • Dan

            .45 won’t work with a simple barrel change. you need to change a lot more than that. like, pretty much everything. and you still get snappy blowback recoil. yay.

          • Echo5Charlie

            Why not throw an NFA weapon that is unobtainable to Joe Public into the mix. But my question is, why no magazine stack weight issue mentioned here…

      • WeaponBuilder

        300BLK does shoot cast lead reliably & accurately in an AR platform for dirt cheap training, practice, and hunting hand loads with high capacity magazines. Something that likely will never happen in 45acp. How many +20rd 45acp mags will fit a standard AR mag well? None.

        I shoot thousands of cast lead 45 rounds, and have been looking for a way to cheaply shoot cast lead in my AR for years. 7.62×39? Proprietary mags of untested reliability with expensive boxer brass – not low cost. 30 Rem? Expensive brass, proprietary mags, usually low capacity.

        300blk can shoot cast lead dirt cheap, reliable with my sizable supply of usgi mags, requires no bolt modifications, uses dirt cheap & plentiful 223/556 brass, and just needs a barrel

        • Airman596

          Reloading lead and converting 5.56mm brass isn’t something most folks want to fuss with. It’s cheap if you can afford to spend hours at the reloading table. Otherwise, subsonic 300 Blackout is $1 per round or more (if you can find it).

          • Dan

            primers at least have been plentiful for a long time from midwayusa.

            some websites will let you backorder powder. just a hint. i got a 20lb powder backorder in 6 months. a lot better than NEVER for 22lr.

          • Airman596

            Very true and I have some backorders I’m waiting on. However, I can buy 5,000 rounds of M855 5.56 and 5,000 rounds of subsonic 9mm Luger and have it delivered to my front door in 5 days. How many days, months, or years will it take for you to backorder and reload an equivalent number of 300 Blackout supersonic and subsonic rounds? I’ll probably have shot up all my 5.56 and 9mm by the time your backorders finally process :)

            Hopefully, price of 300 Blackout comes down and availability of ammo and reloading components improves. As of today, high volume shooters should stay away from 300 Blackout.

          • Dan

            308 projectiles are probably the most widely available on the planet. if you are willing to settle for blemished / pulled bullets you have a lot more options. use 7.62×39/7.62x54r bullets for even more options.

            223/556 brass is the same. it’s not a good range day unless i leave with twice the amount of brass i came in with. :)

            primers, as noted before, are not a problem.

            powder is largely not an issue as there is a reasonable selection of powders that will work for 300blk. it is after all using shotgun/pistol powders.

            the reloading situation for 300blk is a lot better than many other calibers. but then i reload 30-06, 223, 9×19, and 380acp as well.

            fwiw really high volume shooters almost always reload their ammo.

          • HSR47

            Soviet 7.62 calibers (x39 and x54R) are not the same diameter as NATO 7.62 calibers. The former use .311 projectiles, the latter use .308 projectiles.

            The Soviets had a pathological urge to make their small arms non-compatible with what was available in western countries, and this is just another example of it.

          • Raven

            It’s not an intentional thing, as I understand it, it’s a difference between pre-NATO European and American measurement standards. European caliber measurements were across the grooves of the rifling, so the bullet was slightly bigger than the nominal bore diameter to engage the rifling. So you end up with weird stuff like 7.5 Swiss using .308 bullets, and 7.62×39 using .311.

          • Dan

            you can swage the projectiles down to 308 if you like, or use them straight. this is being widely done with great success. check 300blktalk handloading forums.

          • Echo5Charlie

            Not true on your last statement…the 7.62x54r was adopted in 1891 – well before any Soviet doctrine was even thought of in regards to small arms. In fact, it was a caliber defined as “three line/lines” and the sights of the M1891 Mosin were graduated in arshin.

          • Airman596

            Show me where I can find powder suitable for 300 Blackout that’s in stock and ready to ship to my front door. Bullets and primers have only recently become available in large quantities. Having to backorder and wait 6 months to a year doesn’t count considering I can buy 5.56x45mm ammo right now and have it shipped to my front door in a few days. This might not seem like a big deal to you, but for someone considering 300 Blackout for home defense or duty use, that’s a big deal. If ammo is too expensive and reloading components are not available, the cartridge is worthless because you can’t shoot it. It’s MORE DIFFICULT to buy reloading components than ammo right now. Hopefully that changes in the future as I’m sure we are all tired of backordering components. I’m sitting on some backorders over 6 months and counting. I’m resorting to buying factory ammo for the first time in 10 years. My reloading press is gathering dust unfortunately.

          • Dan

            as i post this. powder valley has accurate 5744 in stock. bullets and primers have been available constantly for a YEAR or more. midwayusa has had primers constantly for over a year, and grafs has had a constant supply of 308 projectiles for over a year. midsouth shooter’s supply has 220gr SMK’s in stock.

            there you go. in stock and ready to ship to your front door. get at it. now.

          • Airman596

            5744 is out of stock at Powder Valley and they are not accepting backorders. As for primers being “available constantly for a YEAR or more”, that’s bullshit. A year ago was May 2013. NOTHING was available a year ago.

          • Dan

            if primers have only recently become consistently available, explain my regular primer orders from grafs and midwayusa over the past 12 months. i have primers coming out my ears, enough to support every caliber i reload and more, besides 300blk.

            i placed backorders with online suppliers and got a buttload of powder, only waited ~4 months. still waiting on my 22lr orders!

            projectiles are plentiful.

            i am pretty well stocked at the moment.

            yes, things are harder to find these days. but not impossible. if you are waiting for supplies to fall into your lap like the old days, you’re going to lose. you have to pay attention and check sources regularly. or place backorders and wait.

            you missed your chance to buy some 5744. they do continue to pop up regularly. pay attention or you will continue to miss opportunities to stock up.

          • Airman596

            Backordering and waiting months and months does not count. One can buy factory 5.56 right now without backordering. You’ve proved my point. You’re saying one has to be constantly on the look out for powder, primers, etc or, in your words, “you lose.” That’s why 300 Blackout sucks. I don’t want to bother with all the trouble. While you “only wait 4 months” backordering components, I buy ammo, it ships right away, and I shoot it all up before you even get your components. 5.56 is the way to go because it’s less expensive and AVAILABLE.

          • Dan

            can’t help it if you’re too lazy to use your press.

            components are available.

            but, keep whining :) i’ll keep shooting. 223 for far cheaper than you can get it. and my 300blk.

          • Airman596

            35 cents per round is cheap. My time is worth more to me than your time is to you. While you’re searching for components online and toiling away at the reloading table converting brass from 5.56 cases, I’m at the range shooting ;-)

          • Airman596

            I still haven’t figured out why I can buy all the 5.56 and 9mm I want, but I can rarely, if ever, find a single box of .22 LR anywhere. 300 Blackout is probably easier to find than .22 LR. It doesn’t make sense.

      • JumpIf NotZero

        “completely new gas system dynamics.

        OOOhh??? Go on……

        • http://196800revolutionsperminute.blogspot.com/ Nathaniel F.

          I just mean there will be differences in gas system length adjustment because of the new cartridge using much faster burning powder. That means, apples to apples, you’ll need a shorter gas system, a wider gas port, or both.

          Is it a big deal? No, but it does create a new set of standards to adhere to.

          • JumpIf NotZero

            So by “New gas system dynamics” you mean a hole/port of arbitrary size, located 2″ closer to the chamber, but otherwise entirely identical in form and function to the original gas system. I think you owe Magpul $5 for using the word Dynamic when it doesn’t really apply.

            300blk has a far better cyclic rate stability over suppressed or not, supersonic or not, over 556. You don’t need an adjustable regulator on 300k suppressed for example because the subsonic ammo generates roughly similar pressures to the super. The ammo amount of powder and larger bore mean more volume so adding a suppressor doesn’t have the same increase. It’s probably the single best designed part about the round, it’s something JD Jones and dozens of 300 whisper re loaders never thought to do (equalize sub and super pressure).

            556 ammo was shoehorned into its current application. 300blk was entirely designed to function in ARs, not adapted to it.

            Maybe I’m missing the big negative change in the gas system. Or what these new standards you are referring to are. Because worst case the biggest change I can see is you might have to have a spare pistol length gas tube if you want a complete spare parts kit. Other than that, pretty damn identical.

          • Cymond

            I agree, I think equalizing the pressure of subsonic and supersonic loads is the major functional difference between the Blackout and the Whisper. The fact that is it SAAMI specced and well marketed help, but it is the ability to choose ammunition freely that really sets the Blackout apart.

          • http://196800revolutionsperminute.blogspot.com/ Nathaniel F.

            I meant that .300 Blackout runs faster powders, which don’t work well in longer gas systems.

            As you say, use a carbine or pistol gas system and this is less of a problem. However, for military use, it warrants a new set of standards, all for unclear gain.

            I am not – nor have I ever – said civilians should not use the .300 Blackout. Use what you want.

          • Echo5Charlie

            You keep having to follow up with “I meant”. Bad writing, my friend.

            BTW – the 300 BLK standard is to use either a pistol or carbine length gas system. The barrel length basically dictates which is used.

            Perhaps you should actually understand that which you are talking about before you make a fool of yourself.

            Again, your standards statement is just stupid. No fking kidding that a new set of standards would be needed.

          • Dan

            why mention it at all? it is a non issue.

          • Justice

            Exactly.
            Buy a factory 300BLK barrel with either a pistol or carbine gas length. I don’t see the problem here…

          • Echo5Charlie

            Stupid statement. Using your logic, the same holds true for:

            6.5 Grendel
            6.8 SPC
            .458 SOCOM
            .50 Beowolf
            ad nauseam….

            Why? Because they are all a “new set of standards”!! Really, really stupid statement on your part.

            Your original statement was, and is, hogwash. It was reverse trolling!!

          • William Swartzendruber

            16″ barrel with your standard carbine-length gas tube. Cycles both supers and subs unsuppressed.

            What’s the issue?

      • Justice

        Its a rifle caliber and has better range than 45ACP.
        It runs fine on carbine and pistol gas lengths.
        What’s mag stack weight issue? Never had problems with that…

        • http://196800revolutionsperminute.blogspot.com/ Nathaniel F.

          It doesn’t have substantially better range than .45 ACP.

          It does run on carbine and pistol gas lengths.

          The spring of the magazine is designed to lift a stack of cartridges of a certain weight. Increase that weight, such as by having 30 rounds of heavy subsonic .300 Blackout instead of 30 rounds of light 5.56mm, and you introduce problems.

          • Echo5Charlie

            I am assuming you have experienced this issue personally? What mags?

            While I have been using mostly Gen 1 Pmags with my subsonics, I have not encountered this issue.

      • Echo5Charlie

        “the magazine stack weight issue” – are you kidding?

        “the completely new gas system dynamics” – again, are you kidding?

        Your third statement, holy s***, I won’t even touch that.

    • Airman596

      5.56x45mm is around 35 cents per round. The 7.62x39mm that 300 Blackout is compared to is around 22 cents per round. In comparison to those cartridges, supersonic 300 Blackout is around 70 cents per round. Subsonic 9mm is around 30 cents per round. In comparison to subsonic 9mm, subsonic 300 Blackout is over $1 per round. While it may provide some benefits over the cartridges I listed, it does so at a significant increase in the cost of the ammo.

      • JumpIf NotZero

        Agreed mostly, but you aren’t shooting 220gr 9mm anywhere, nor are you shooting a suppressed pistol round as far or as accurately as a suppressed rifle round (although most people can’t figure out drop for 556 at 400y let alone 300blk at 200y). You’re definitely not finding the same excellent bullet selection in x39. And you aren’t shooting an 8″ 556 suppressed and unsuppressed without serious changes in cyclic rate like you can with 300blk.

        There are pros and cons. The trick is to be able to realize what YOUR needs are.

        • Airman596

          If cost is no issue, 300 Blackout is more effective than subsonic 9mm. No question there. However, when we’re comparing less than 30 cents per round to over $1 per round, is it worth it? I don’t think so and I suspect many law enforcement departments will feel the same. Nevertheless, 300 Blackout is here to stay and offers benefits over what’s commonly chambered in AR-15s and other similar carbines.

          • Echo5Charlie

            Price is relative. In 2006 I was buying 9mm for less than 10 cents per round. As of today I can get it for about 24 cents per round.

            Also, there is 300 BLK ammo to be had in the 75 cents per round category. While still pricey, it puts a dent in your argument.

      • FinallyFree

        And if you reload, they are just as cheap as either 5.56 or 7.62, as it uses the same brass and bullets. Lower commercial price is due to volume sold, so of course 300 BLK is going to be higher right now.

        • Airman596

          Reloading does not save much money when the only bullets that make sense for 300 Blackout are OTM bullets (such as Sierra Match King 125 gr.) or expanding bullets (such as Barnes TAC-TX 110 gr.). The only inexpensive bullets are 147 and 150 gr. FMJ bullets, which are designed for full power rifle cartridges like .308 Winchester and are not ideal for 300 Blackout. 147 and 150 gr. bullets in 300 Blackout give lackluster velocity of around 1,900 fps with energy around 1,200 ft. lbs. If you use 147 and 150 gr. bullets in 300 Blackout you have not gained anything over 5.56x45mm.

          • Justice

            That’s beside the point. You as a reloader or shooter should use whats available, not whats necessarily the “best” bullet for the cartridge.
            For practice ammo, you do not need the premium OTM bullets.

          • Airman596

            The only bullets available that make sense for 300 Blackout are premium bullets. There aren’t any inexpensive 110 or 125 gr. FMJ bullets. You could use 147 or 150 gr. bullets designed for 308 Winchester, but what would be the point of that? You’re still spending more than 5.56, but you haven’t gained anything.

          • Echo5Charlie

            Plinking. Duh.

            I’d use 147/150 300 BLK for serious work just as I’d use M855….

          • LeftThumb

            If you are talking about reloading with great terminal ballistics I agree with you. It will be expensive. If you mean reloading practice ammo or range ammo, then there are plenty of 125 grain 308 bullets that are relatively cheap and plenty reliable. The most common is the Sierra Pro-Hunter 125. Really though any center-fire caliber that was not at one time a mainstream military caliber is going be expensive relatively.

            The argument for or against is similar to the AK 47 to 74 with the suppression added plus reloading as a requirement. There are people who prefer the 7.62 and some the 5.45. There are advantages and drawbacks to both.

            Personally I’ve reloaded around 10k rounds of 300 Blk and I prefer to reload it vs the 556 for a lot of reasons. There are practical considerations also in reloading, when it comes to powder. The Blk uses roughtly 40% less powder and powder is very hard to find currently.

          • Airman596

            That is true. For reloaders, powder goes a long way. The cartridge isn’t without its merits. I just don’t see the additional cost over 5.56 being worth it. If I use sound suppressors more often I may change my mind.

          • Echo5Charlie

            You don’t own one? Why are you arguing about it then?

            If you are going to argue it, then at least educate yourself.

          • Echo5Charlie

            147/150 grain ammo? I call it plinking ammo.

      • Justice

        I don’t feel that availability of 300BLK is an issue, esp if you reload. Ammo supply is coming back now and you can find plenty of 300BLK commercial ammo online. The key is to stock up now on both the ammo itself and components while they are available.
        As a reloader, if you already have powders and other components, 300BLK is very easy to reload for since you can use 223/5.56 cases and 308 bullets.

      • Echo5Charlie

        Hmmm, where does your 5.45 ammo come from? All it takes is importation to slow down…or even stop. Watching all the 5.45 fans scramble when the surplus 5.45 was banned from import was rather amusing.

  • JumpIf NotZero

    The developer of AAC’s 300blk himself said he equates a speciality round like .40S&W. It’s not for everyone, for most people it doesn’t make sense compared to other cals, but when you have a use for it – it’s there, developed, and does what it does.

    I find the comparison less useful then some because I think .40 is dumb. But the idea that it’s a niche caliber is not lost on me. Buying a 300blk just to have it seems pointless, but if you have an application that calls for it (ie suppressed, or very short barrel) it does make more sense over 556.

    I think the author’s disillusion comes from the fact that he doesn’t actually have a use for it.

    • Airman596

      Perhaps a better comparison would be to ..357 Sig. .357 Sig is there for those would want the velocity of .357 Magnum, but don’t want to use a revolver. 300 Blackout is there for those who want to use subsonic ammo, but don’t want to use a 9mm carbine or submachinegun.

      • JumpIf NotZero

        Perhaps you should let the developer of 300blk know you have a better analogy. I’m sure he put very little thought into it.

        You’re confusing yourself by thinking the 300blk is only for suppressed, only for subsonic, AND/OR only for short barrels. It’s not. You’re giving up case capacity for terminal ballistics, but it does that very well.

        .357SIG is a marketing solution to the former caliber wars. It literally offered nothing the 9/40/45 couldn’t do. Likewise 300blk offers a lot that 9mm can not do, so along with the people that would know, I have to disagree and insist .40 is the level of niche that is probably more apt.

        For me personally, I don’t have a use for 300blk because I like 556 for logistical reasons. And when I want to shoot suppressed, 9mm works well for me. But that doesn’t mean 300blk doesn’t have a role, it just doesn’t have a role for me. Much like I suspect the author figured out.

        • Airman596

          I agree that 300 Blackout provides some benefits over 5.56x45mm and subsonic 9mm, but those benefits are not worth twice the cost of 5.56 and three times the cost of subsonic 9mm. If tax payers are paying for the ammo you’re training with, then 300 Blackout is a winner :)

          • Echo5Charlie

            Do you own a 300 BLK?

        • Mountain

          Word.
          Truly, the only niche it should have is subsonic with a can (preferably with a short barrel to keep 220’s sub). Marketing hype is the only reason it is popular with non-NFA toy folks.

          If you want to hear a good application of the .300*, see if Liberty is doing a demo in your area and try out the Leonidas or Mjolnir.
          .

          • Echo5Charlie

            220 subs stay sub in a 16″ barrel (Remington factory). As do 208 Hornady A-Max subs…

    • Echo5Charlie

      I think the delusion (from Major Pandemic) is that he is ignorant.

  • Duray

    Show me someone who calls the blackout “pointless” and I’ll show you someone who doesn’t handload.

  • Joe

    .300 BLK is also pretty good for people who want to hunt with an AR, but their state doesn’t allow them to use .223.

    • Nathanael S.

      Only thing is that you’re better off getting a whole upper to shoot 300blk, which unfortunately costs around $450-$900. I can get a Ruger or Mossberg in .308 for around $300 out the door and probably save lots on otc ammo too.

      • Dan

        a lot of people would prefer to hunt with their light, handy semiauto AR than an unwieldy bolt action.

      • Echo5Charlie

        And I can buy meat at the market cheaper than hunting it in the wild.

        BTW – did sights come on your Ruger/Mossberg?

        • Nathanael S.

          It’s the hunt, bro, it’s the hunt. Yes, you could buy those that come with scopes, but you can get one cheaper elsewhere.

          • Echo5Charlie

            You are talking a used rifle then? Actually, just be specific.

            I do work in the industry, so I am interested in the rifle(s) you had in mind made by Ruger/Mossberg that can be had for around $300 OTD.

          • Nathanael S.

            I already own a scope (or a good Bushnell can be had for around $50), so the Mossberg 100ATR in .308 on Cheaperthandirt (brand new) goes for $277.15 w/out scope. Ruger American Rifle goes for around $340 w/out scope. Either way, that beats every .300blk upper I’ve ever seen in price AND weight.

  • dp

    Just looking at this picture and forgetting subsonic issue for a moment – you realize how balanced the M43 is.

  • Chris

    Until I see 300 Blackout available anything other than an AR-15. I’m still going to think its just another fad among the American firearms community.

    • Jeremy Star

      Because AR-15s are a fad, right?

    • http://www.hondaperformancetuning.com/Accord/ Guy_Honda

      They make a cheap single shot handi-rifle in 300 blackout.

    • Joe Blackout

      You can also get a Remington 700 in 300 blackout

    • Dan

      so basically, your ignorance is blocking you.

      • Chris

        No, Also don’t want to buy a new gun for an unproven round. Not everyone owns the corporate socialist rifle.

        • Cymond

          I’m inferring from your comment that you don’t live in the US? If the stats I’ve read are correct, private citizens in the US own over 50% of all firearms in the world. Sorry, but that makes every other nation a niche market by comparison.

          Also, please see the TFB motto above.

        • Echo5Charlie

          Your ignorance betrays you…

    • Echo5Charlie

      Hmmm, Remington and Mossberg come to mind for bolt guns chambered in 300 BLK. I think they may chamber the Handi rifle in it, too…

  • Nathanael S.

    The 300blk became a huge disappointment for me when they marketed it as an ‘upgrade’ to the AR, and then betrayed everyone when they turned around and let it get taken over by the hunting crowd so now ammunition for it costs 3x as much as even 5.56. Why not just make a more functional 7.62×39 AR magazine and call it a day? It’s a win-win, same alterations to the AR, and you get more powerful, CHEAPER ammunition for it. But nope, gotta get our slice of the pie too, don’t we?

    • Dan

      because 7.62×39 on AR platform is an unreliable hack, and won’t run subs suppressed anyway.

      most 300blk shooters reload anyway, because ammo is hard to come by.

      • Nathanael S.

        Only if you fail to get good parts and make sure they seat properly (as with any AR platform). A hack? Unlike a hybrid round that turns out to be worse than both its parent AND big brother cartridges? And suppressors are so cool why? Because they’re so darn cheap and easy to come by, I suppose.

        No kidding. A big, subsonic round that drops off the edge of the earth at 200yds. Yeah… I suppose there are worse hybrids out there, like the .416 Hushpuppy.

        • Dan

          truly spoken by someone who has never run either 7.62×39 OR 300blk on an AR.

          if you want an AR to feed 7.62×39 reliably, you need a different lower. hack #1 on AR platform. a lot of 7.62×39 primers are too hard for a stock AR hammer. hack #2 on AR platform. corrosive ammo is also especially unkind to DI, so you need to buy more expensive non corrosive ammo or go piston. and if you’re going to convert to piston, might as well go with a piston platform designed from the ground up to run 7.62×39 — the AK47.

          300blk is as simple as a barrel change.

          i reload, so the ammo cost doesn’t affect me, and i get the best of all worlds.

          • Nathanael S.

            The trouble lies in the magazines, and there are some very reliable brands out there with a 30 rounder in 7.62×39. If you get a purpose-built 7.62×39 upper, then it will have the proper bolts, believe it or not. Um, maybe I’m dreaming, but I could swear I just saw non-corrosive 7.62x39mm ammo on Gunbot.net for a mere $0.24/round. Probably my imagination.

          • Echo5Charlie

            Didn’t you just post about needing a more reliable 7.62×39 AR mag?

    • HSR47

      The UMC line ammo is actually relatively inexpensive, all things considered….

      The white/green UMC subsonic ammo can generally be found for around $18 per box, which isn’t horrible when you factor in the raw material cost (the bullets themselves retail for ~$.40 each).

      For the most part the cost increase over 5.56 is due to raw material cost, and the fact that their tooling for 5.56 is generally older (and was paid off a long time ago)…

      as far as the ammo you can find, it’s largely a function of market demand: The plinking loads have been in such high demand that it has been nearly impossible to keep them in stock. Since nobody wants to plink with ammo that costs $35+ per box, the hunting ammo tends to stay on the shelves longer.

      The supply does seem to be loosening up of late: After seeing nothing but $30+ boxes of supersonic hunting/match ammo for over 6 months of working at a retail gun shop, my store has gotten in something like 10 cases of the cheaper UMC subs in the last month or so: We’ve actually been able to keep it on the shelves.

      • Nathanael S.

        Well, that actually makes sense. Still, I’ll hold off further consideration until the prices are at least comparable to 5.56. That may be awhile yet.

    • Echo5Charlie

      So there was a conspiracy by the hunting crowd? I hate it when they do that.

      BTW – to use 7.62×39 in an AR you need to use a -gasp- bolt designed for 7.62×39. And a magazine that works. And probably a new firing pin designed to work with steel cased ammo. And maybe a heavier hammer spring. Tell me again how it is the same alterations to the AR in regards to 300 BLK?

  • opie7afe

    id rather 7.62×39 however until they fix the bolt issues i wont be running an AR in that caliber. 300Bo would be great if the ammo was not so pricey. im waiting for tula or wolf to produce it in steel case then it will become cheap enough to have fun with and not make you poor.

    • Dan

      or just reload and shoot _every_ caliber cheaper.

      • Cymond

        Yes, but it’s a significant investment up front. Steel-cased ammo makes far more sense for low-volume shooters (such as those living in urban environments without good access to a range).

  • Josh Greer

    The 300 AAC is a great pig hunting round. Heavy bullets at short range work much better, in my experience, vs 5.56

  • Echo5Charlie

    An article similar to the lack-luster stuff from TFB. Full of misinformation and just poor intellectual writing. Hell, even your segue to the linked article has nothing to do with article!

    When you guys want articles with real journalism attached to them, contact me.

    • http://www.thefirearmblog.com/ Phil W “Senior Writer TFB”

      Would you like to contribute to the conversation or just run down the author and TFB? My goodness somebody has an ego. Who have you written for?

      • Echo5Charlie

        Contributing to the conversation would run down the author and TFB. But here I go:

        The TFB article presented here does not even bother to warn the constant reader that linked article at All Outdoor is just plain crap. While it is an opinion piece, and Major Pandemic is entitled to state whatever he likes, the article is chock full of misinformation, lack of information and some outright stupidity. TFB should be helping its readers become informed with fact and not allowing them to venture into a tangled forest of BS.

        Visit the following webpage and realize that Major Pandemic may wish to brush up on his knowledge gathering skills: http://www.300blktalk.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=128&t=73274

        Whom have I written for? The United States Marine Corps and PAARNG.

        • Dan

          TFB quality has significantly declined in the past few months. this article is just more proof of that.

      • Echo5Charlie

        Eh, no reply – no surprise. You called me out, at least I had the decency to reply.

  • Airman596

    I like the concept, but the cost of the ammo prevents me from buying into it. The least expensive bullets are 147 and 150 gr. bullets, which are typically used for .308 Winchester and are not ideal for supersonic 300 Blackout. The only supersonic bullet weights that make sense for 300 Blackout are expensive match OTM bullets. Likewise, the only subsonic bullets weights for 300 Blackout are expensive match OTM bullets. If you buy factory ammo, you can expect to pay 70 cents per round for supersonic and over $1 per round for subsonic. Reloading doesn’t save you much money because you’re stuck with expensive match OTM bullets. We need cheap FMJ 125 gr. and 220 gr. bullets to make this cartridge more cost effective.

  • Airman596

    For subsonic use, what does a .30 caliber 220 gr. Sierra Match King bullet do at 1,000 fps that a 9mm 147 gr. Speer Gold Dot bullet can’t do at roughly the same velocity? One could use a suppressed 9mm AR-15, Tavor, MP5, UZI, etc.

    • Cymond

      Yes, but can that pistol-cartridge carbine switch to shooting supersonic 30-caliber rifle rounds with just a magazine change?
      As I see it, the 300 Blackout is useful because it can fulfill several different roles.

      • Airman596

        I agree that it’s useful, but only if someone else is paying for your ammo. It doesn’t provide enough of a benefit over 5.56 and 9mm to justify the increase in ammo cost.

        • Echo5Charlie

          So, carry two weapons to do the job of one?

    • Echo5Charlie

      I’m sorry, I can’t hear you over the alternating subsonic and supersonic 300 BLK I am firing. Perhaps I should put my suppressor on?

      How about engaging targets from “up close and personal” to 650 meters?

  • ⊕RussR⊕
  • Mountain

    A direct quote from Silvers:

    “300 Whisper is to:

    1. Fit in AR mag.
    2. Work autoloading.

    If you are making a bolt action, then I would go .308 or 7.62×39 for two reasons:

    1. No need to make brass and can get pre-made brass cheaper.
    2. You can shoot pre-existing supersonic ammo.

    If you shoot 220+ grain ammo, you should use a 1:8 twist”

    Source: http://www.silencertalk.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=64&t=41420

    Other than “because I want to” (which is a valid reason), the .300* is only truly useful in a subsonic load that should be used in conjunction with a short barrel and can. It is a NFA nerd’s toy. “But tactical tacticalness tactics!” Shhhh, shhhhh, everything will be fine, go back to /r/. “But it makes a good [supersonic] hunting AR!” true-dat homes but so does an AK and hunting ammo for both is equally as pricey and you could practice for a third the cost (sovietbear.jpg)!

    Where it IS fun is on something like a Liberty Leonidas or a suppressed bolt gun (given you can get it to feed or don’t care).

    Don’t try to push it like it’s the “bestest evar!” when you know that most of your readers don’t shoot suppressed and .223 puts hoes in paper, piggies, and predators just fine. It’s not for everyone but neither are a lot of things. Again, do what you want and have fun doing it but don’t pretend like the whisper/BLK is the best option for what you use it for.

  • Antinimby

    F.O.G. Firearms and Cartridge is shipping 300 Blk with 220 Grain Sierrra Gameking. Go to http://www.fogfirearms.com/collections/300-aac-blackout to order.

  • Jenkem Jones

    The 300 bs isn’t the 308×1.5 Barnes and definitely not 30 Remington AR or even 7.62×39. If you don’t need to fire it through a silencer, don’t bother.