TFB Review: Mossberg 590 Shockwave

    Mossberg introduced the magazine fed variation of their 590 line. The 590M, M for magazine fed. The Mossberg 590 (based off their 500) is a proven, solid design. This platform has been popular in both civilian and military/LEO populations. With this proven history, I will focus on what is new and different. Specifically the magazine and the handle. Mass produced detachable-magazine fed pump action shotguns are a newer trend. Lets us see how well Mossberg did it.

    The 590 shockwave has a 14″ barrel with an overall length of 27 inches. There is no thread for a choke. It is a compact little beast. This compact size appears to have an appeal. It requires no tax stamp nor extra paperwork. The Shockwave compactibility has even gained illegal status in some states (you can guess which ones).

    The Shockwave variation of the 590m comes with a gooseneck grip. The manual states it should never be fired from eye level, however, there is a front bead site.  I was able to use it fairly well with acceptable accuracy. The key point is with practice. The Shockwave comes with a fabric strap around the foregrip, a good feature for such a shortened shotgun, as your hand is so close to the bore.

    A magazine fed boomstick is the new “thing” in the industry. This is the feature where the Mossberg 590M shines.


    Mossberg designed a double stack magazine with capacities ranging from 5 up to 20 rounds (all 2.75inch rounds). The magazine is built with a thick polymer base and multiple steel parts (internally and externally). The magazine is very well built and appears to takes abuse well. (More on this later…..)

    This is the Sherman tank of polymer magazines

    The magazine is attached “AK style”. It is rocked into an all steel housing that has ambidextrous button release. The 590 Shockwave magazine has what Mossberg is describing as “stabilizing ribs” on the top sides of the magazine giving an overall better grip on the receiver. The design of the floorplate is easy to open for maintenance.

    The heavy-duty lug for magazine release is ambidextrous

    The magazine “weld” to the receiver is a solid connection with minimal movement

    Normally as a reviewer, I frown on any abuse of equipment in a doing my review. It is not how I treat my equipment. I am certainly not got going to do that with someone else’s. I think once you start trying to break something, it becomes a challenge and some actually become surprised when they succeed in breaking a product, then poo-poo it in the review. Not how we roll here at TFB. Well, Mossberg sent me two magazines! So, I had a spare…

    I took one magazine to my place of employment. Explained my mission, that we wanted to drop it at arm level as many times as possible. I stressed we were NOT to do more. After about 50 drops, it started to be slow at work, and, well we started throwing it at each other and batting it. Sometimes hitting each other (LC, I still feel bad about that one!). End of the day, the mag had cosmetic blemishes and was fully functional. Unfortunately, it got a little out of hand. Fortunately, the magazine survived and was completely functional.  This mag is 5 stars! By the way, when you load this magazine it is heavy, solid and should not be thrown…..ever….especially at friends.

    After straight up abuse, this is the results. Small dings all over it, but still functioning


    Let me be up front. My personal belief is a defensive shotgun requires a shoulder weld, therefore, a stock,. The Shockwave comes with a “gooseneck” grip. Although awkward, after some training works. It is absolutely not a beginner shotgun, and most importantly, effective only after training. Visually it is certainly appealing (read: tacticool). James at TFBTV says this is in the top 5 sellers this summer. (Check it out here).  I reached out to our contact at Mossberg regarding how well it is selling versus other models, but unfortunately, I never received a response. It certainly does have an appeal out there, and units are selling well.

    The standard 590M has the traditional stock and seems a lot more practical. Obviously, this is my preference for self-defense.

    The Shockwave is a lot of fun to shoot. With just the ten round magazine, dumping the magazine is a blast (pun intended). I think that is what the shotgun is good for. It is for dumping ammo and having fun. To look at a gooseneck grip shotgun for defensive use is a bit misguided. Yes, it looks VERY cool, but not too functional (again it is not really set up to shoulder).

    The concealability of the shockwave is another positive point. With a magazine detached, it is easy to be stashed. Perfect “trunk monkey” if you are so inclined.

    Mossberg went all out with the magazine design. It proved to be completely Mike proof. Therefore, well worth your investment.

    For something to dump rounds and live that “Wolverines” dream, clearly, the Shockwave fills that bill. Comparatively, I am not too fond of it as a self-defense tool.

    For a practical defense weapon, get one with a stock.

    Any of you TFB readers own or have shot the Shockwave? What was your experience?

    Mike R

    Mike spent his entire adult life riding an ambulance throughout the Southwest US. He found humor in long in-depth philosophical conversations with crack heads and other urban street survivalists.

    His highest point was being invited to instruct for some “special” medics in the military. He spent almost 10 years there. A 30 year gun enthusiast, he started down the path of reloading to keep up with his desperate need of more ammo. Reloading is like medicine, you never stop learning.

    He can generally be found at the local range picking the brains of the old timer, looking for brass, and banging away at gongs. He reloads everything from .32 to .45, .223 to 7 rem mag.