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Back in 2007, I bought an M&P40c as my main carry pistol. It checked off all the boxes as far as capacity, size, and reliability.

Carried it for the next ten years. Then I got serious about CCW.

I started accuracy testing and reloading.

I noticed that the M&P40c just wasn't as accurate as the other carry pistols I had.

I went so far as to buy another M&P40c. Then, another factory S&W barrel. I tried multiple loads.

The bottom line was that the M&P40c was just not as accurate as every other carry pistol I had.

Yesterday, I took four pistols out to the range and fired them all with the same ammo (except the P365) and put them through some drills. The M&P40c was consistently the worst performer compared to the full-sized version..

Why???

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I've noticed the same thing with my full sized M&Ps (9mm and .40 and .357 SIG). No idea why. Tried multiple loads (factory and reloads). Tried Apex triggers, Apex barrels, Storm Lake barrels, S&W barrels, even a PC 5" ported upper on my 1.0 9MM frame.

Our Shield 9MM pistols will out shoot the 1.0, 2.0 9s and .40's.

For some reason the 2.0 .45 Compact even shoots better than the 9s and .40's. Some design/manufacturing difference.

The Apex trigger kits make for a super nice trigger but did not shrink the groups on my pistols. The Apex barrel in the 2.0 5" 9MM did cut the size of the groups a noticeable amount, but still not to what I was looking for. The Storm Lake barrel in the 1.0 FS .40 was pretty much a disaster. Feed issues and no improvement in groups.

If I were to buy another M&P it would most likely be the new higher capacity Shield. More rounds, smaller groups.

Odd that a pistol so small (the Shields) should shoot so good when the sight radius is so short, the grip so short/thin it's not as easy to grip/hold as the full sized pistols, but they do (or at least the two we have).
 

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I've owned multiple examples of just about every M&P semi auto made since they were fist introduced, and have never found them to be lacking for accuracy, but maybe I'm just lucky.

Font Circle Drawing Art Illustration
This is from a M&P40 m2.0 compact at 10 yards with 5 shots. it could be argued that I missed the X, but that is just me on that day.


Air gun Trigger Gun barrel Gun accessory Recreation

This is from a M&P40 m2.0 compact at 14 yards.

Trigger Air gun Revolver Gun barrel Gun accessory

This is from a M&P40 m2.0 full size at 25 yards. Video of the above 25 yard group.

I could post quite a few target pics of various M&P's that I've owned, but most of the pics would show similar results. The exception being that the full size M&P's show slightly smaller groups due to the improved sight radius.

Having said all that, I do know that there were some accuracy issues during the M&P 1st Generation that some users experienced with the 9mm version. I don't recall reading about those issues extending to the 40 S&W or 45ACP versions.

Here is a review that shows how one YouTuber overcame his M&P9 1st Generation accuracy issues with the Apex Tactical Gunsmith fit barrel.
 
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I bought an M&P 40c for the same reasons you did. It checked all the same boxes. Never found it to be as accurate as the full size M&P 40, but I just chalked that up to its smaller size.

Didn't think much of it until getting a Shield, which I found to be much more accurate. Much easier to conceal also. Despite its lower capacity I don't carry the M&P compact any more.

Why? I have no idea. I just prefer to think the Shield is just a better gun – for me. I suppose the moral of the story is carry what's best for you.
 
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