Glock 43 vs Springfield XDS 9

Glock vs XDS

Andrew of GY6 Vids compares the Glock 43 to the Springfield XDS 9mm. Andrew mentions that many people like to compare the M&P Shield to the Glock 43 but they are not the same sized gun. He is right, the Shield is a slightly bigger weapon compared to the Glock 43. Just like the Shield though, the XDS gives you a std capacity 7rd magazine and a high capacity 8rd magazine. Something the Glock 43 does not do with its twin 6rd magazines. Although the Glock 43 does come with pinky extensions, something the Glock 42 was sorely lacking. I have to disagree with Andrew on the grip texture comparison of the Glock 43 and XDS. He says the Glock 43 has little to no texture while the XDS has a more aggressive texture. The Glock 43 texture is similar to the Gen4 texture which I like. The XDS texture is knobby. I would describe like a dull plastic meat tenderizer. It does not feel aggressive to me at all. It is smooth and slippery. Especially when your hands are mildly moist from sweat or rain. However that is just my opinion and personal preference. I do prefer the Gen4 Glock texture as I prefer shooting my Gen4 Glocks over my Gen 3 and Gen2 Glocks. Now my stippled Gen3 Glock is a completely different gun with its very aggressive texture. Now aside from grip texture differences, the rest of Andrew’s analysis is on point. The XDS has an ambidextrous mag release. The Glock 43 has a similar mag release like the Gen4 Glocks and can be switched over for a left handed shooter however it is not truly ambidextrous like the XDS.

Something Andrew did not mention is that the XDS is also available in a 4.0″ barrel version. Another option that the Glock 43 does not have.

Glock stats



Nicholas C

Co-Founder of KRISSTALK forums, an owner’s support group and all things KRISS Vector related. Nick found his passion through competitive shooting while living in NY. He participates in USPSA and 3Gun. He loves all things that shoots and flashlights. Really really bright flashlights.

Any questions please email him at nicholas.c@staff.thefirearmblog.com


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  • cs

    P30SK beats both with a 10rd capacity and the option of using full size P30L Mags.

    • jng1226

      Not nearly the same width, and not nearly as concealable. I have a P2000SK and I love it, but it’s the same size and width as my M&P Compact. The XDS, Glock 43, and shield are at least .3 inch slimmer, and that is a huge difference when you hold them in your hand and carry IWB anywhere from 2-5 o’clock. I know I’ll get flamed for this, but I also have a Diamondback DB9 that beats all the aforementioned guns for small form factor and is 6+1 capacity 9mm. My updated (3 pin) version is reliable over the course of 600 rounds, but only when fired with a two-handed grip. Even locked out one handed I have a 50/50 chance of the gun failing to cycle. I still carry it when I need the utmost concealment for a 9mm gun though.

      • Nicholas C

        Odd that it malfunctions one handed. I carry a Sig P938 and I customized a P290 mag to work with the P938. So I have 8+1rd.

        • jng1226

          Not that odd. It’s an 11-ounce 9mm pocket pistol. It has such a strong recoil spring that it doesn’t cycle reliably unless the gun is held vise-like so the action can do its thing. Shooting “free-style” with a tight 2-handed grip allows this but one-handed allows enough energy to not make it to the action that it short-cycles. When it malfunctions in this way the slide hangs on the next round in the chamber, only requiring a tap on the bottom of the mag to get it to close, but it’s still disconcerting behavior in a self-defense gun that may indeed need to be used one-handed. Too bad, as it is an incredibly small gun with a surprisingly smooth trigger pull (better than a Kahr, IMHO), and quite accurate too. That it can be had for far under $300 retail is just icing on the cake. Mine was $285 with Trijicon Night Sights factory installed and eats 124-grain Federal HST like candy (using two hands of course).

    • Jason Guhl

      Can’t really compare a single stack 9 to a double stack. HK fanboy here, but I don’t care for the P30 sk

  • Dave Y

    I totally missed the weight difference when a range buddy let me compare the G to the S/A
    I have the .45 XDS, and dimensionally, they’re so close as to be almost identical. One thing the S/A has the Glock did not was a rail. I think all the G triggers are a little less weird than the XDS. I did quickly get used to the XDS though.

    • Dan

      I like my .45 XDs but I agree the triggers are “different” feeling.

    • spiff1

      Why would you want a rail on a compact carry pistol? Hanging junk off the frame defeats the purpose.

      • Dave Y

        sure, if you hang an x300 off of it!, but with a compact light / laser / both, it still conceals fine.

  • I’d love it if Glock made a 4″ barrel G43. With an 8 round magazine it would be like a single stack G19, which I think would really be the best blend of shootability and concealability.

    • Joshua

      Why? Terminal ballistics change very little with that tiny amount of barrel and there is +2 mag extensions available.

      All of my g43 mags have 8 rounds.

      • Nicholas C

        I beg to differ. Try shooting a Glock 35 and a Glock 22. WORLD of difference. And that is just .83 inch difference in barrel length.

        • ArlingtonVA’s_Finest

          I agree. The difference between a XDs 9mm 3.3 vs a 4.0 is certainly noticeable, even more so in the .45.

      • Longer sight radius, reduced muzzle climb, increased velocity, and most importantly, similar training and handling characteristics to the G19.

  • Dickie

    Agreed i want a 4″ Glock single stack. Who knows mayb its b the glock 44. I been a glock
    Guy for subcompact pistols but really thinking about the xds 4″

    • spiff1

      Try a G19….

      • USMC03Vet

        We can go through the entirety of Glock’s product line minus their 10mm offering and every single time objectively Springfield’s XD line will not only offer more out of the box, but often times offer the features Glock owners are literally paying extra for via 3rd party addons.

        Glock is floating on a reputation largely built upon appeal to authority marketing these days.

        • Cymond

          but, but, but … the internet says that XDs are completely unreliable! Real 1337 operators would never use one! [/sarc]

          http://ct.fra.bz/ol/fz/sw/i59/2/8/3/frabz-ACTUALLY-9f1b65.jpg

        • maodeedee

          Glocks are reliable and their magazines are reliable. And less is more. However I do like the addition of a grip safety on the Springfields and I also feel the need to upgrade to a stainless steel guide rod in the Glocks.

      • maodeedee

        It’s nice but thick as a brick. I had one and then upgraded to 40 caliber in the same size gun to a G23.

  • Marcus D.

    My first handgun was an XD9 with a 4″ barrel. Far too heavy and too thick for CC. I wanted an XDS (in .45) as soon as they came out, but California won’t let me have one. I settled for a Kahr, which is 2 oz lighter than the Glock, has a 3.5″ barrel, and is 7+1 to boot. All for a price under $400. Plus, for my midsized hands, I can get a full grip without an extended mag. The sacrifice is the smooth but loooong DA trigger pull.

  • Jim B

    Just bought a G43 on Friday, took it out Sat. and put 150 rounds of 124 fmj reloads (mine) through it. So far so good. I have very large hands (10″ span) and find that it jumps around quite a bit. The G26 is a much better fit for me. Ordered up some Talon grips for it, which I think will take care of that problem. I also have some TTI +1 extenders on the way, so looking forward to see if they work reliably. They look to add about an 1/8 inch to the length which is really incredible. And finally, TruGlo TFX Pro sights and two additional mags are on their way.

    Can’t compare to an XDS as I don’t have any Springfields. Only Glocks and Sigs.

  • JASON B

    Really confused why the Shield does not make the best comparison? They are not the same size? Actually they are the same size. In fact, the Shield is smaller in most key dimensions!

    Barrel SW 3.1″ G43 3.4″
    Length SW 6.1″ G43 6.2″
    Width SW 0.95″ G43 1.02″
    Height SW 4.6″ G43 4.25″
    Weight SW 19oz G43 18oz

    The SHIELD is actually SMALLER in just about every key dimension but height. And the difference in height is barely noticeable.

    So what is the deal, you just say whatever you want and that makes it true…”the G43 is smaller than the Shield”. Yeah, Umm, but it is not.

    The Shield is actually the ideal comparison to the G43. You can ignore this article.

    • CavScout

      Ya, that threw me too. Some people just want to give the Glock 43 credit where it ISN’T due. And they were damn near last to the party, but innovation isn’t their strong point, and probably hasn’t been since the 80’s.

  • USMC03Vet

    Andrew basically states the obvious, with the XD you get a firearm made entirely for conceal carry with all the bells and whistles out of the box and extra. If Springfield is smart and makes a Mod 2 version the XDS I’d get one in a heartbeat.

  • Bill

    I started with a Kahr CW9 and recently added a G43. I’m coming to think that pistols like these are the J-Frames/D-Frames of this generation. I’m carrying my 642 less and less, and the Scandium framed J-frames are priced out of my range.

    • Lew Siffer

      I have a scandium J-frame, and it is incredibly light weight. But the recoil with .38 +P is so violent that it almost twists out of my hand with that little boot grip. I do not recommend them.

      • maodeedee

        As much as we might wish them to be, the laws of Physics can not be negated or suspended temporarilly

    • maodeedee

      the scandium framed j-frames are impractical with any ammo but target wadcutters because if recoil unless you put bulky grips on them which makes them more bulky and less concealable.

      Just about everything in life is a trade off. I carry an old S&W Humpback Airweight bodyguard with skinny grips and a Tyler T-grip adaptor and load it with Buffalo bore standard pressure (868 fps out of 2″barrel) 150 grain wadcutters, Target wad cutters are only loaded to about 7-750 fps and that’s out of a 4 inch barrel, not a 2 inch.

  • Hugo Stiglitz

    I own the xds .45 and it’s a great pistol. Accuracy, dependability are excellent and the recoil is surprisingly manageable. The only drawback…a bit heavy for a pocket gun when wearing shorts. After some research, I decided on the Ruger LC9 pro. I compared it to the Glock and the trigger was better, edges are rounded for pocket carry. Put about 100 rounds through it at the range and I’m convinced I made the right choice. Surprised it didn’t make it into this comparison.

  • Wayne Perkins

    -I have owned my xdx 9mm 4inch for a year and a half and absolutely love it. Have put 3500 rounds through it and it’s never failed using all kinds of ammo (no steel casings, only brass). I tested several different guns before choosing the xds including the glock, sig p290rs, lc9p,shield and others. The xds was right for me. It a little big for cc, but all things considered I like it best.

  • maodeedee

    The XDs 9mm is also larger than the Glock so this is rally another apples to oranges comparison like comparing the Glock to the Shield. The Springfield also has a 4 inch barrel option that the Glock does not have but why would anyone who wants the smallest lightest most concealable 9mm want that as an option?

    I was disappointed when the Glock 43 came out. I wanted it to be closer to the size of the 30 caliber Glock 42. Keltec makes a truly lightweight compact 9 but it has a cheap stamped steel extractor that his highly prone to failure. Recoil is sharp on that gun but that’s the trade-off for a truly compact 9. And I think that’s probably why Glock made the 43 larger. than it needed to be.

  • Nicefish

    After several years of carrying a couple of revolvers and trying a double stack I decided to go with a single stack nine. Considered just about every one out there including the G43. Thought it was nice but, in my opinion, was significantly trumped by the Walther PPS, Smith and Wesson Shield, and XDS. Ultimately had to split hairs and went with the XDS (picked up one for my wife as well). Some XDS advantages (over the G43) 7,8,& 9 round factory mag options, grip safety, ambidextrous mag release, small rail, changeable back straps, steel guide rod, polished feed ramp, much better sights. The XDS is one of the heavier single stacks out there but I actually prefer that as this makes it much more shootable to me. Have to say that if anyone out there is looking into this type of pistol, you ought to check out the Honor Gaurd single stack 9 from a new American company Honor Arms. Sounds like a potential new standard in the field.