M&P Shield Users - Do you prefer the 7 or 8 round magazine?

This is a discussion on M&P Shield Users - Do you prefer the 7 or 8 round magazine? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; And why? I can already see the responses coming..."A Shield with the 8-round magazine is taller than a Glock 19! You should carry the Glock ...

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Thread: M&P Shield Users - Do you prefer the 7 or 8 round magazine?

  1. #1
    Member Array pattywak's Avatar
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    M&P Shield Users - Do you prefer the 7 or 8 round magazine?

    And why?

    I can already see the responses coming..."A Shield with the 8-round magazine is taller than a Glock 19! You should carry the Glock instead!" But people who think this forget that the Shield is thinner than the Glock 19, and for some people the overall width of the gun makes a very big difference when carrying, so let's leave all the "...carry a Glock 19/26 instead" comments out of it.

    Sticking to just the Shield, do you prefer using the 7 round or the 8 round mags?

    Personally, I use the 7 round mag as my primary and my 8 round is my backup mag that I carry in a mag pouch. This way, I keep the grip as short as possible, but also have the maximum number of rounds available should I need a reload.

    When it came to ordering more magazines, I thought I was gonna get all 8 round mags because I would be using them at the range. But then I thought, "Well, they do allow for a full 3 finger grip, which may make me shoot different than if I just had the two finger grip using the 7 round mag." Needless to say, I ended up getting 3 more 7 round mags.

    My reasoning? Should I ever have to draw and use my gun, I want to be most proficient at using it in it's ready state ( with the 7 round mag. ) I still wonder if I should have gotten the 8 round mags for the benefit of one more round at the range / classes, but I think the 1 round won't make that much difference.

    So what about you guys? Which magazine do you prefer, and why?
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  3. #2
    Member Array TheConcealer's Avatar
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    I prefer the 7 round mag too. The 8 round makes it print through shirts significantly more.

    But... I'm getting a new holster soon with some good forward cant so maybe that will make it less noticeable. We'll see.

    And on a fashion note, the gun looks a bit disproportionate with the 8.
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    Senior Member Array RightyLefty's Avatar
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    Another for the 7 round mag. I have a M&P9c which I like very much but I wanted something smaller for the summer for deeper concealment. So if the whole point is getting the smallest package possible, that means the 7 round mag. Use the 8 round mag at the range or carry it as a backup.
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  5. #4
    Member Array Pistoldoc's Avatar
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    I just got mine last week, but definitely like the 7-round mag. Much less printing. I plan to buy more 8 round mags for the range though.
    "The Second Amendment isn't about protecting ourselves against criminals. It's about all of us protecting ourselves from all of you." ---Dr. Suzanne Gratia Hupp to Congressman Charles Schumer (D-NY), 1994**

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    Member Array ponchsox's Avatar
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    I prefer the 7 rounder. Easier to conceal plus the 8 round magazine can be tricky to seat sometimes.

  7. #6
    Member Array 9mmHP's Avatar
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    i carry the seven round mag, and if i am just plinking and not practicing i will use the 8 round

  8. #7
    Distinguished Member Array Madcap_Magician's Avatar
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    I prefer the 7-round for carry and the 8-round as a spare. I am, however, one of those 50% or so of Shield owners and carriers who can get all three fingers on the 7-round mag anyway, so it doesn't affect me as much.
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  9. #8
    Senior Member Array MilitaryArms's Avatar
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    The Shield with the 8 round magazine inserted makes the height of the pistols only ever so slightly shorter than a full-size Glock 17. It makes the pistol taller than a Glock 19. Here's a picture of the Shield with the 8 round magazine inserted next to a full size Glock 17.



    When you're attempting to optimize a firearm for concealed carry you can trim things in 3 places. 1) Muzzle length. 2) Butt length. 3) Thickness.

    Muzzle length means very little in the grand scheme of things when it comes to concealment. Since the muzzle is typically worn carried in a downward position, concealment isn't as much of a worry. Comfort, perhaps.

    Butt length means the most in terms of being able to conceal a firearm under clothing. The longer the butt is, the harder it is to cover the weapon up and not have it print through the cover garment.

    Thickness can make a difference, but mostly it's a comfort thing again. It does help when you're carrying inside a pocket as well.

    That means making your Shield as long as a Glock 17 with the 8 round magazine makes little sense to me. If you're going to make it as hard to conceal as a full size handgun there's little point in carrying a sub-compact. Get a Glock 19 or a S&W M&P 9C. You'll have a much larger magazine capacity and it will conceal about the same.

    If you're going to own a sub-compact you might as well take full advantage of the length savings afforded by the 7 shot magazine.
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    VIP Member Array Thunder71's Avatar
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    Length matters more if you carry outside the waistband, if you're in a state where it cannot show at all that's a huge issue.

  11. #10
    Senior Member Array MilitaryArms's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thunder71 View Post
    Length matters more if you carry outside the waistband, if you're in a state where it cannot show at all that's a huge issue.
    True, but you have options. IWB is always an option if you're in a state where "brandishing" is a concern. Also, you can always wear longer clothing to better hide a longer barreled pistol -- after all we're talking about an inch or so of extra length. If you're wearing a cover garment that's just an inch or two long enough to cover your pistol (where an extra inch or so of barrel length would cause a legal problem) you're pushing your luck as it is. Either go IWB or find another method of carry.
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    Member Array pattywak's Avatar
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    Thanks for the comparison shot MAC! And I see that some people here also agree with me that the 7 rounder is the way to go.

    I just returned to the range, and I found no problems just running my 7 round mags. Even though my pinky hangs off, it's still very shootable. Plus, one thing I hate on the 8 round mag is the grip extension. I carry mine in a horizontal mag pouch, and on occasion when I check it the grip extension has moved from the original position. Not something I want to have happening in case I need the mag. Now I just run it without the grip extension, and haven't had any functionality problems. It also helps train me to not rely on my pinky for more grip.
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    I have two Shields. Between the two of them, I have 1900 rounds fired thru them. At first, I honestly had no preference between the two. Although, I obviously used the shorter mag for pocket carry. But for actual shooting, I didn't develop a preference for one of the other until after 1000 rounds or so.

    I discovered that I shoot the same, accuracy wise, with either mag. But in terms of how comfortable the gunw as in my hand... I actually prefer the shorter 7 round mag. Even shooting 2 handed, it is my preference.

    I have 3 of each magazine. I plan to order 2 more soon, and I'm going to buy two 7 round mags next

  14. #13
    Member Array tcfiero's Avatar
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    I have a 40 so I use the 6 round mag. My brother-in-law uses the 7 round one. We traded mags. I got the short ones and he has the extended ones.

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    Senior Member Array MilitaryArms's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pattywak View Post
    Thanks for the comparison shot MAC! And I see that some people here also agree with me that the 7 rounder is the way to go.

    I just returned to the range, and I found no problems just running my 7 round mags. Even though my pinky hangs off, it's still very shootable. Plus, one thing I hate on the 8 round mag is the grip extension. I carry mine in a horizontal mag pouch, and on occasion when I check it the grip extension has moved from the original position. Not something I want to have happening in case I need the mag. Now I just run it without the grip extension, and haven't had any functionality problems. It also helps train me to not rely on my pinky for more grip.
    I have found that the extension on the 8 rounder is poorly designed as it ships from the factory. I do carry my 8 rounder as a back-up, but I've removed the extension. I recommend either pulling it off and tossing it in the trash or gluing it to the body of the magazine to avoid it moving around. If you use it as a spare magazine, it can cause difficulty in reloading the weapon if present on the mag and not secured. I talk about the problems I have with the extension in my review video below.



    You can jump to 9:20 in the video to see where I talk about the 8 round magazine.
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  16. #15
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    Yep. 7 round mag for me. If I want big grip I will carry for capacity.
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