S&W M&P Shield vs. Beretta PX4 Storm Subcompact

This is a discussion on S&W M&P Shield vs. Beretta PX4 Storm Subcompact within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I currently have a Beretta 92FS, Beretta 8045 Mini Cougar, and a S&W M&P Shield. The story behind picking up the shield is kinda convoluted ...

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Thread: S&W M&P Shield vs. Beretta PX4 Storm Subcompact

  1. #1
    Member Array BeefyG's Avatar
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    S&W M&P Shield vs. Beretta PX4 Storm Subcompact

    I currently have a Beretta 92FS, Beretta 8045 Mini Cougar, and a S&W M&P Shield. The story behind picking up the shield is kinda convoluted but I got it.

    My impression of the Shield is as follows:

    Pros:
    I'm accurate with it.
    Its really slim and easy to conceal.
    I've already got a 9mm so ammo can be shared.

    Cons:
    The safety is opposite direction of my other guns.
    I don't enjoy shooting it very much.
    The magazine has to be slammed home to catch.
    It has to be racked hard to come all the way back forward. If not, it jams.

    The loading the magazine and racking the slide issues aren't big issues if I'm carrying it racked and loaded. I just don't like that it takes more effort than my other guns and therefore could be an issue in the heat of the moment. Its pretty new so maybe its just not broken in yet.

    I'm not interested in the Nano because of some of the FTE issues its had, it doesn't look like a Beretta, it feels top heavy when holding it, and it doesn't have the same controls as my other Berettas. I'm looking into the PX4 subcompact and it looks like a nice little gun. Its half an inch wider than the shield, but with almost double capacity. The other dimensions are pretty close. And its controls are the same as the other Berettas.

    Which would you pick and why? Opinions and advice welcome.

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Array sensei2's Avatar
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    if finances allow, buy the PX, shoot them together for a while, carry each around for a bit, and sell the one you like least.

    p.s.: nothing says you MUST engage the safety on the Shield. if carried in a holster that covers the trigger guard, it will be as safe as most other guns without a manual safety.

  4. #3
    Member Array BeefyG's Avatar
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    The Shield is on a credit card right now but I have the cash to pay it off. I guess I could let it sit on the card for a month while I decide but thats going to cost me interest. Also, idk how much longer the shield will be a hot item so saleability might drop off in a month or two. I paid $450 for it plus tax so I didn't get a great deal on it. I'd hate to take a loss on it but that may be the price I pay for impulse decisions.

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    VIP Member Array ghost tracker's Avatar
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    *The safety is in the opposite direction because the slide-mounted Beretta safeties are "upside down".
    *Very few extra-small 9mm pistols are "fun to shoot".
    *The mag & slide issues are surprising, but not unheard of. Run 500 rounds & see if things don't loosen-up.
    *That $450 is a stiff retail price IMHO. About $50 more than I see around here.
    *Good Luck!
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  6. #5
    Member Array ping.brady's Avatar
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    I have the Shield as well and like it very much. As mentioned by sensei2, if you can, try them side by side. Though I'm a fan of the Shield, and M&P line in general, everyone is different. Besides if you don't like the Shield after side-by-side you shouldn't have a hard time selling it due to it's popularly.

    Not sure what's going on with your slide, mine racks as easy as any other semi pistol. Of 1000+ rounds now I haven't experienced a single issue (FTE, FTF, battery, etc).

    How many rounds through it? How often do you clean it and what oil do you use? I'm a fan of CLP + slide grease + touch of oil in every factory recommended spot & barrel.

  7. #6
    VIP Member Array gottabkiddin's Avatar
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    I have the M&P 9C and the Beretta PX4 SC in .40 S&W. Outta the two I like the Beretta for a host of reasons. I like the firepower first and foremost, The grip is about the same, but the trigger and action goes easily to the Beretta. My groups are much better with the Beretta due to the DA SA trigger. Both are outstanding pistols, but if I had to choose one over the other I'd go with the Beretta every time. My Beretta has become my constant companion over the last couple of months. Weight is more than the M&P, but the firepower is a fair trade off.
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    Member Array BeefyG's Avatar
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    It doesn't have a whole lot of rounds through it. I bought it used from Gander Mountain but it had hardly any signs of wear. It was completely dry at the time and I oiled it before using it. It may just need more oil and more rounds through it. I've only taken it to the range twice and split about 150 rounds between it and my 92FS. Cleaned it both times. As far as racking goes, it racks easily enough. The problem is it gets jammed or the slide doesn't come all the way forward unless I use the slide release to finish racking it or if I let go when the slide is pulled all the way back. It jams if it has any kind of softness to the racking motion. I'm just not used to that. Maybe its just a bad habit but I hold on to the slide until it starts to go forward again. I could train myself to not do it but I figure I'm better off with a pistol that doesn't jam when I rack it the way I rack it.

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    Member Array BeefyG's Avatar
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    Thats another question... do I go with the 9mm or 40S&W? Most of the reviews I've read on the PX4 SC have been the 9mm. I'm a bit worried about the snappiness of the 40 in such a small gun but then again I don't have any problems with my 8045 mini cougar. Then again the 8045 is pretty hefty with a full length barrel and just a short grip.

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    Member Array skinnyb's Avatar
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    I have a PX4 SC in 9mm and a PX4 full size in .40. The 9mm is an absolute joy to shoot, very accurate and the 13+1 capacity is nice. The full size .40 is awesome in its own regard and 14+1 capacity. Just as accurate as the 9mm and has more grip (I have to use the snap down extension on the SC for it to fit my hands). The Berettas are very thick and heavy for CC IMHO so I have relegated them to night stand duty (9mm for her, .40 for me) and now have Ruger LC9 x2 for CC.


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    Member Array ping.brady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BeefyG View Post
    Thats another question... do I go with the 9mm or 40S&W? Most of the reviews I've read on the PX4 SC have been the 9mm. I'm a bit worried about the snappiness of the 40 in such a small gun but then again I don't have any problems with my 8045 mini cougar. Then again the 8045 is pretty hefty with a full length barrel and just a short grip.
    Both the Shield and PX4 are available in 9mm and .40, so technically you could choose either for both. Not going to get into the caliber comparison debate, but as a long time .40 fan, I've acknowledged that modern defense ammo has closed the gap in performance. A reliably expanding JHP +P 9mm round sits on the same level as a JHP .40 in my opinion. My primary carry for winter is M&PC in .40 and for summer was Walther PPS in .40. When I got the Shield to replace the summer carry, I picked 9 due to better control with such a small package and extra round. Haven't looked back. If anything I've added a M&PC9 to my wish list.

  12. #11
    VIP Member Array Eagleks's Avatar
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    PX4-SC is well made and great gun. The quality is such, it will still be a good gun numerous years from now. Nothing from me about it but positives, as I haven't found any negative about it. Conceals easily as well.
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    VIP Member Array gottabkiddin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BeefyG View Post
    Thats another question... do I go with the 9mm or 40S&W? Most of the reviews I've read on the PX4 SC have been the 9mm. I'm a bit worried about the snappiness of the 40 in such a small gun but then again I don't have any problems with my 8045 mini cougar. Then again the 8045 is pretty hefty with a full length barrel and just a short grip.
    I absolutely love my .40S&W, thought I would just tote my 9s, but after the first few range trips and it's performance I am sold on both the pistol and the round. Is it snappy, oh yeah, but when you look at the level of performance associated wit it verses the round count, 10+1 of .40S&W is very nice in this size pistol... I know there's larger capacity pistols out there, but not many at the same scale as the PX4 SC.. That said, I'm thinking I'd like to have the 9mm version as well.
    BeefyG likes this.
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  14. #13
    Member Array ping.brady's Avatar
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    Also, some folks don't mind double-stack cub-compacts year round in any situation. Between my M&P40C and the Shield9 I notice the weight difference and prefer the Shield much more for daily carry. The M&P40C is mainly worn in higher risk areas in IWB or in winter under jacket/sweater with leather OWB holster. Each to their own, you just have to try different things out and see you like.

    If you are considering PX4 SC, I'd also see if you can rent a M&Pc in 9 or 40. My 40 carries 10+1 with a 15 round mag in my pocket. I'm a big M&P fan due to the ergonomics and the melonite finish; plus S&W customer service is hard to beat.

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    Member Array Ransom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BeefyG View Post
    My impression of the Shield is as follows:

    Pros:
    I'm accurate with it.
    Its really slim and easy to conceal.
    I've already got a 9mm so ammo can be shared.

    Cons:
    The safety is opposite direction of my other guns.
    I don't enjoy shooting it very much.
    The magazine has to be slammed home to catch.
    It has to be racked hard to come all the way back forward. If not, it jams.
    I love shooting my Shield--I guess that one is purely subjective. If you have the slide locked open, the magazine should catch with no effort at all. Your experience with the slide not going all the way into battery is a known issue for some Shield 9 owners. Mine sometimes does it too unless I release it from the full open position. Just use the slide release or pull back and let it fly! Cheers!

  16. #15
    Member Array BeefyG's Avatar
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    The magazine thing has only happened when the slide is forward. I usually need to do it twice on the first mag I insert because I didn't push hard enough the first time. I havent tried it with the slide open. I'll have to check that out. I've tried a full size M&P 9 and I didn't care for it either so I think its one of those preference things.

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