.40 S&W Ammo Review

This is a discussion on .40 S&W Ammo Review within the MP Ammunition forums, part of the Smith & Wesson MP Forum category; So after a couple trips to the Indoor Range that requires its low tier members to purchase their ammo I thought I might offer up ...

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Old May 2nd, 2011, 01:50 PM   #1
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 496
So after a couple trips to the Indoor Range that requires its low tier members to purchase their ammo I thought I might offer up some opinions and such... Now please remember these are only my opinion, There was no Scientific Testing done or any of that stuff, I am a mediocre shooter at best, and all prices are subject to differences as well...

Winchester (White Box)

165 GR. 40 S&W FMJ

Price: $35.00 per 100 (Approx.)

American Eagle (Federal Cartridge Company)

165 GR. 40 S&W FMJ

Price: $19.95 per 50

Federal Premium "Law Enforcement Ammunition - Tactical" (Federal Cartridge Company)

165 GR. 40 S&W Expanding FMJ

Price: $22.99 per 50


The White Box is a great ammo for taking out to the outdoor range or hills and tearing up cans and bottles or dinging steel targets with friends. It is inexpensive (relative I know) with very regular manufacturing. i have not experienced any FTF, or FTE with this ammo out of 300 rounds (3 boxes) used. Solid seating and crimping with no loose grains in any of the boxes...

The American Eagle ammo also did fairly well for me. Only one box of 50 was used but there were no problems with the firing of any rounds and no FTF/FTE. I was very suspicious of this ammo when they put the box in front of me as it looks like the bottom of the barrel, bargain priced, no frills ammo that Federal might offer. I wouldn't use it to sight anything in with but it made its way down range without any problems.

The Federal Premium was the next step for me in looking for a cheap ammo that was a step above bargain bin but offered me the chance to work on my shooting abilities. I really like this stuff. 200 rounds (4 boxes) down range and not a single hiccup or problem and any wayward round placement I could see was my own fault. Now I don't know how realistic the "Law Enforcement" stamp is on the box but I would be willing to keep 5 of 7 of my HD magazines loaded with it as back ups.

Would be very interested in hearing others takes and or experiences as well...
McTerry is offline  
Old May 2nd, 2011, 04:10 PM   #2
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: North, Idaho
Posts: 109
I have used a lot of Federal Champion and Winchester Whitebox 165 & 180 grain and have had great results with both. I have favored the Federal but thinking I may favor the Winchester now. I seeming get a bit better groups with it. Not sure if its me or the gun. I am thinking I need a second opinion so next practice match the club has I think I will have a couple of our top shooters give it a try and see what they think.
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Old May 2nd, 2011, 04:19 PM   #3
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: oakland county
Posts: 31
400 rounds of winchester down range and no problems. Just bought 200 rounds of the federal 180grain so I will update after shooting tomorrow.

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hanny76 is offline  
Old May 3rd, 2011, 10:12 AM   #4
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 60
I have to keep it simple for economy. I feel my range ammo should match my defense ammo in weight and energy. But have not yet decided between 180 gr 400 ft lbs and 155 gr 445 ft lbs for defense. My defense ammo is Federal Defense C40SWA and P40HS2. I will try to buy and shoot at the range Federal American Eagle AE40R1 and AE40R2, subject to availability. I intend to bring a few defense rounds into the range to check for function.

I have no experience in this but am going on what I have read and what seems to make sense. Any comments appreciated.
Ala Tom is offline  
Old May 5th, 2011, 03:46 PM   #5
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: western mass
Posts: 65
american eagle is all i stock and shoot, i have 800 rnds in a 30 cal can for longterm storage. Never had a problem seems to be alittle cleaner than wwb. I also shot a box of federal all went boom no problems. I have shot at least 600 rounds of american eagle.
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Old May 8th, 2011, 01:02 PM   #6
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: N. KY
Posts: 1,249
I just bought 4 boxes of .40 Win White box for 17.95 ea at Walmart. O.K. for target practice.

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Old May 16th, 2011, 08:48 AM   #7
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: People's Republic of NJ :(
Posts: 261
I have never had a problem with WWB or American Eagle for target shooting with my M&P45c or HK P30, I will see how my brand new M&P 40 handles it.

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Old June 2nd, 2011, 01:49 AM   #8
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Iowa
Posts: 11
For what it's worth, I've shot both 165 gr WWB and 180 gr Federal back to back to back/ mixed in mags. To me the 165 gr WWB has much more felt recoil and shot tighter groups than the Federal. Again, for fwiw/imho etc... Both function 100%
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Old June 2nd, 2011, 04:46 AM   #9
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Northwest
Posts: 7,681
Originally Posted by Ala Tom View Post
...have not yet decided between 180 gr 400 ft lbs and 155 gr 445 ft lbs for defense. My defense ammo is Federal Defense C40SWA and P40HS2

IMHO you're paying too much, and for a lesser quality of ammo. Federal loads both their top of the line HST 155 and 180 grain bullets in brass cases as XM40HB and XM40HC. This first quality ammo can be had for $25 or less if you look around. They're overruns from a Federal LE contract and have slightly higher terminal ballistics than the P40HST2 and P40HST1 (very expensive premium SD loads). This is the very best stuff out there, at one of the lowest prices for SD ammo.

Originally Posted by whitetrash84 View Post
To me the 165 gr WWB has much more felt recoil and shot tighter groups than the Federal.

The lighter ammo usually does have more recoil than the heavier, you're not dreaming there, and both are equally capable of 2 1/2" to 3" groups at 25 yards.
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Old June 6th, 2011, 08:21 AM   #10
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Sweetwater, TN
Posts: 22
I've been using WWB 165gr to practice. I've never had any issues with the quality of the ammo or with function in my 40c. Until yesterday. I bought a box of 100 and went to the range. This box of ammo looked rough! The cases weren't clean, with small areas of corrosion on some of them. Some of them had red sealant around the primer pockets while most of it didn't. It all fired and extracted, but on numerous occasions it was slow to go into battery. There were a couple of times when I thought it wasn't going to close, then the good ol' M&P would shoved it in there! Like I said, this is the first time I've seen this. I hope I was just unlucky and got a bad box as this is the cheapest stuff I can get locally at about $30 per 100. Anybody else seen this with WWB?
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Old June 15th, 2011, 04:04 PM   #11
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: People's Republic of NJ :(
Posts: 261
With WWB...not yet, and hopefully never! I too hope you just got a bad box. I just purchased a case of WWB 165gr and inspected all of them, all normal.

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