9mm handgun

The Best 9mm Handgun

Due to its size a 9mm handgun is now one of the most popular self-defense calibers for concealed and open carry. In this review we will look at a range of 9mm caliber handguns across all price ranges.

If you would like to skip the review and just go to the best compact 9mm handguns then here is a quick list.

The 9mm is a weapon that provides a good balance between ease of firing and stopping power. It is a lightweight pistol that has moderate recoil with less chance of over penetration.

Ammunition can be found nearly everywhere and comes in a variety of configurations, FMJ, hollow point and frangible.

So let’s take a closer look at the handguns in our list.

Smith & Wesson M&P9 2.0

There have been some changes made to Smith & Wessons M&P pistol hence the new model number 2.0 tacked onto the name. The changes are added frame strength, additional stippling around the grip with a heavy texture, beaver tail has been removed, small front serrations have been added and they slimmed down the top of the slide.
Smith & Wesson M&P9 2.0

Fully upgraded

Shoots smoothly and solid performer.
$484 at Brownells
Prices accurate at time of writing
This gun is comfortable and has a good feel in the hand. They shoot smoothly and once again this is a reliable compact 9mm worth every dollar.

Springfield Armory 9mm XD(M)

Priced less than the HK but similar to a Glock it's a great first gun to buy and a solid performing compact.
Springfield Armory 9mm XD(M)

Best value for the money

Solid performer packed with features.
$549 at Brownells
Prices accurate at time of writing
This handgun will give you the most value for you money. It is packed with features and shoots flawlessly. Great fun to shoot with.

Glock 19

Known for its reliability, the G19 is by far the most popular handgun in the United States. It is a striker fired polymer frame pistol that other handguns in the same class are compared to and sets the standard for this class of handgun.
Glock 19 9mm G5

The most popular 9mm handgun

A favorite with government and law enforcement agencies.
$559 at Brownells
Prices accurate at time of writing
The gen 5 Glock 19 can be configured with upgrades to the slide, barrel and grip. It also has a rail that allows a flashlight or other accessories to be attached.

HK VP9

The Heckler & Koch VP is an excellent choice for a striker fired weapon. It offers interchangeable backstraps and grip panels and has to be one of the more comfortable and smoothest 9mm pistols on the market.
HK VP9

Another favorite with the military.

Rivals Glock for features and reliability.
$633 at Brownells
Prices accurate at time of writing
Some of the features are a striker fired indicator, ambi controls, luminescent 3 - dot sights and a 5.4 pound trigger. There is also a VP9SK model that has the same features but in a smaller package. The Glock and HK feel different when fired but I cannot say one is better than the other.

Sig Sauer P320

The Sig Sauer P320 has been chosen by the army as it’s new sidearm. It has a lot of variants so finding something that fits your requirements is made easier. The trigger breaks around 6.5 pounds allowing for precise and quick follow up shots.
Sig Sauer P320

Unique modular design

Can be customized to your needs, even the caliber can be changed.
$499 at Brownells
Prices accurate at time of writing
This is an excellent shooting pistol that is known for its ease of use, reliability, modularity and accuracy. It is a compact that can be quickly changed to meet your requirements and give you a custom handgun.

Ruger SR9c 9mm

This compact 9mm handgun comes in four versions. The versions differ in color and magazine size with one having a 17+1 round magazine.
Ruger SR9c

Has a 17+1 round magazine

Becoming a favorite with government and law enforcement agencies.
$433 at Brownells
Prices accurate at time of writing
This handgun is at the lower end of the price scale but performs well and gives you every thing you need in a compact 9mm handgun. Only one version has the 17+1 round magazine, the other versions have a 10+1 round magazine.

Video Reviews

Sig Sauer P320 review

Ruger review

Conclusion

Anyone looking for a compact defensive gun will be okay with any of the handguns mentioned in this article. These are some of the best guns in their class on the market. These compacts are about as big as you want for concealed carry, any larger and you will need to start making some adjustments to your clothing, such as an oversize shirt or untucked shirt.
If we have left out your favorite compact 9mm handgun let us know in the comments below and we may include it in our next update to this review.

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Joel WexlerJason colfAlan BeardMike HumphriesG BAR RED Recent comment authors
Russ
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Russ

He he….. but alas this article as of July 2018 is out of date. Fine weapons here indeed, but the new king is now here, the Sig Sauer P365!! 9mm 10+1 18 ozs, night sights! 🙂

Russ
Guest
Russ

for compact carry that is! The ultimate combination of size, power, capacity and quality!

George
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George

The Sig Sauer 365 is a fine gun very accurate right out of the box, mine was made and delivered in may of 2018 night sights right size and weight.

Papi
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Papi

Considered the 365, especially after my 320 was so good. But didn’t like the size — a bit Too small. Didn’t feel comfortable.

JCanada
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JCanada

My money goes on my TriStar C-100 for conceal carry, when I’m not toting my Ruger SR9C.

Ken Daley
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Ken Daley

I got the Sig Sauer p290rs a few months back comes with 2 mags a 6 and 7 round just love it using +p+ ammo haven’t had one issue

Jason Kinard
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Jason Kinard

The SIG 365 is my EDC – smaller than Glock 43 and 10+1 capacity. I’ve torture tested my gun and it passed with honors. Also very accurate and awesome sights.

edward Reed
Guest
edward Reed

I have a Remengton R-51 9mm 7 round magazine. It has a safety like the 1911 ( on the grip) My Ruger LCP does not have a safety and I have to be careful with it. The R-51 has the three dot sight and like the Glock will fire without the magazine. I carry it with an inside the belt holster. I carry under a suit and no one sees it. good trigger pull.

Papi
Guest
Papi

Really wanted an R51 when I first handled one. But then came the recall and another year or so. Finally got a chance to shoot one and soon decided I’d pass. Had a bit too much bite to. Maybe if it were slightly heavier, it wouldn’t have so much bark. Also don’t care for the plastic trigger.

Mitch Slot
Guest
Mitch Slot

As far as 9mm goes; there’s definitely been an evolution for me and my preferences over the years. I started with an S&W model 469. It’s considered a compact pistol but I didn’t need to worry about concealed carry back in 1986 when I bought that piece. After all, I was born and raised in Bklyn, NY and simply getting that “target” license was an onerous and very long procedure. But I was right out of the Marine Corps after my 4 year hitch; felt that I could do anything (ah youth, lol) and that gun felt so good in… Read more »

Berb
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Berb

What do you think of the Walther’s Creed 9mm?

Rob
Guest
Rob

I love mine. Great gun. I’ve had no problems and being a Walther I expect none. It’s easy to handle and shoot. It is a large gun and a bit heavy, but that’s what I like about it. Not as easily concealed carried as other smaller frame 9 mm’s, but it works for me. I like that it came with two 16 round mags. Plus extra mags are reasonably priced. Great gun for the price. I got mine for under $300 on sale.

Papi
Guest
Papi

Terrific gun. Creed is so easy to shoot and deadly accurate. Feels molded to your hand. So easy, almost like shooting a .22. And a really nice price. No FTEs, FTFs through more than 500 rounds.

Rich
Guest
Rich

Got my Glock 19 in 1994. 24 years, thousands of +p rounds later, the gun still looks and feels new. It is accurate, never failed to fire or eject a round, never had any issue other than the night sights dimming. Have several handguns, fired many pistols, this is my number one choice. With 15 round magazines, and 1 in the chamber, it is hard to beat. Sits flush against the body. No rusting or pitting. Have to say this is close to a perfect weapon.

Scott
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Scott

For the same reasons, I like my Glock17 G4. Never had a jam after thousands of rounds, not one. Confidence is priceless.

Nav
Guest
Nav

Vp9sk, great summer carry and it takes the full size magazines. Best trigger and sights out the box

Camoguy78
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Camoguy78

Sig p226 any model

Papi
Guest
Papi

Sig P226 is fabulous gun. Accurate and smooth trigger. Little big for carry though.

Guest
Guest
Guest

Browning HiPower Mod III

CZ USA
Guest
CZ USA

CZ P-01 or CZ P-07

buck lawson
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buck lawson

I cant believe they left off the P07! Easily the sweetest shooting stock pistol I’ve fired. All the ones they picked were striker fired though so I’d imagine that’s why. Never fired a P10c

Hal
Guest
Hal

If you are comfortable with no external safeties, then the Glock 19 is the way to go. I love mine. Light weight simple and clean, thin 1″ profile. When carrying mine concealed I hardly know its there. And accurate? Wow! If you have not seen it, go to the Hickock 45 You Tube and watch him do a review on the 19. He absolutely loves the gun and shoots it at his farthest targets and hits consistently like he was shooting a rifle. For those that feel more comfortable with an external safety, there is now an aftermarket replacement trigger… Read more »

Brum
Guest
Brum

The best 9mm hand gun I have ever shot is the Canik TP9 SF Elite made in Turkey. It is very accurate and will shoot any type of ammo without jamming. I have fired it very fast and the recoil is very low. It is concealable and comfortable to carry. Also it has a magazine capacity of 15 rounds.

Tim Bland
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Tim Bland

I’m really leaning to this one, but am comparing other 9mm right now. My plans are home defense/CC/ target shooting.

James Poleto
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James Poleto

Beretta Nano is my favorite. Fits very well in my hand and in a waistband holster. Have fired several hundred rounds without a stoppage.

T Ozzy
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T Ozzy

I like the TP9V2, I think it’s a VERY manageable 9mm, I also like the 18+1 so I know at any emergency I would have 37 rounds available.. then 3 seconds another 18 rounds.

Mike
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Mike

You’ve left out the finest handgun I’ve ever had the opportunity to fire. Love the Walther Q5 Match and prefer it over any other firearm I own.

T Ozzy
Guest
T Ozzy

I wish I had access to most of the 9’s on here, ONE DAY..I guess.. one day. I have held a TP9V2 and it felt good (my hands aren’t very large), and if & when I can afford, it comes with 2 18 round mags & I would hope to have 4 extra mags… that would give me 109 rounds!

Papi
Guest
Papi

You should try Walther Creed. Great gun, extremely accurate and easy shooter. Also 16+1. You can get it for around $300. Also love my Sig P320. Super gun. Accurate, great shooter, great for carry. Really smooth trigger. Only thing is, it’s a bit pricey? Around $500, $550. But worth the money. Another economical gun is the Ruger Security 9. Great shooter and Ruger has terrific customer service, if ever needed. Never a hiccup in mine after about 600 rounds. Compared with Glock 19 by lot of folks, at half the price — less than $300.

Jason colf
Guest
Jason colf

I agree the q5 is the best hand gun I have ever shot

Bruce Konkoski
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Bruce Konkoski

I think you left out a very reliable little gun. It is the Taurus 709 Slim 7+1. I bought one in stainless for $275.00 and had to add a second clip for $28.00. So for 303 bucks I got a very well built/reliable cc weapon. It is not finished (buffed and pollished) as nicely as some of the 4-600 dollar guns but it is definitely as reliable, if not more. That is all I wanted. reliability first and price next. I have now put 1000 rounds through the gun and it has been flawless. A Gun Digest review rates it… Read more »

D Curtis
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D Curtis

What’s a clip doing on a pistol?

JPG
Guest
JPG

You and everyone here knows what Bruce is saying. He bought an extra mag, ya goober.

Papi
Guest
Papi

Bruce makes a good point. Taurus Slim is pretty good gun. Easy to carry. Economical value. Reliable.

Ronald A.M. Lefebre
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Ronald A.M. Lefebre

Taurus G2…need information on it

Adam Cosby
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Adam Cosby

The gun itself feels really in the hand. Very accurate. Negatives are the trigger. Pretty grainy with an Extremely long pull. Also, I really dislike the mag release.

Jojo
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Jojo

Hands down the best handgun especially for the price of it feels great in hand I have a larger than most hand and it fits absolutely perfect where most pistols i have to mod a grip etc out the box I fired ten rounds out of the G2 hitting target bout fifty percent a quarter turn adjustment of the sight fired ten more for 9-10… Taurus was bought out but they kept the name the newer ones made are way better than older ones perfect carry size as well I think… hope this helps

Chris
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Chris

absolutely love my PT111 G2. Feels great in the hands, perfect size. 12+1 capacity. The long first trigger pull is perfect for a self defense weapon. I love my Taurus!

Stephen Baughman
Guest
Stephen Baughman

I love mine, bought it in December 2017, added a laser and it is very accurate

S Andrews
Guest
S Andrews

Failure to Return to Battery, and Poor Customer Service are repetitive complaints that kill it as a choice for me, despite a long list of positives: weight, capacity, optional manual safety, SA/DA. If not for the reliability issue, I would buy it.

Rich
Guest
Rich

It’s a great gun for what it is. The slide may be a bit tight for a person of lesser hand strength, and the sights are simple painted dots. However, the gun is accurate to 20 yards, has a manual safety, and a loaded chamber indicator. Budsgunshop has them around $200, and I feel as safe with it as I do my glock 19.

Papi
Guest
Papi

Taurus G2 is nice gun, dependable. I like the 12+1 in the 9mm, brother likes the .40 S&W with 10 +1. Deep trigger pull, probably 6-8 pounds, but has a quick reset. Good gun for economical cost. Mine is pretty accurate too.

Dennis
Guest
Dennis

had 2 Taurus G2’s at different times — got rid of both — HATED the trigger — second G2 was worse than first — Ruger SR9C took their place and I never looked back

Scott W Sharp
Guest
Scott W Sharp

Carry my G2 all day its my edc i bet i have 3500 thru it and not 1 issue it crisp light and fun love it. I have no neg about it. But the g2 is a bad ass gun and love it. Once i held ot well it was over fits very nice im 6 ft 2 250 bigger hands and fits like a champ. If you are on the fence get off and go get 1 asap. And no the dam trigger is fine just try it youll love it. Again 3500 of all kids ammo brass steel… Read more »

Scott W Sharp
Guest
Scott W Sharp

I have the Taurus G2 and a Taurus g2c the G2 has 3500 rounds through it not one flaw ever carry my G2 for EDC love the gun smooth can’t even tell it’s on my hip so if you’re thinking about buying it pull the trigger you’ll love the gun

zandermonkey
Guest
zandermonkey

I would have to add the kahr line in there!!

NJCOP-RETIRED
Guest
NJCOP-RETIRED

You left out the Walther PPQ M2. Best trigger and ergonomics of any handgun I’ve ever shot and they are laser accurate and run like a clock. They now make a compact version which is probably the best concealed carry gun on the market.

Also, though the M&P 2.0c is a nice pick but the Shield should also be on the list. Perfect concealed size, the 9mm is super controllable and accurate enough to make a head shot in competent hands. Put an Apex trigger in one and you’ll never need another CCW.

Smokin Joe
Guest
Smokin Joe

HK VP9 and VP9SK are more ergonomic and customizable than the Walther PPQ. HK is know for its outstanding quality and reliability.. shoot one before you say another word. Lol!!! You’ll love it.

motowilly
Guest
motowilly

Get The PPQ M2 and the H&K VP9

Bluefiveoh
Guest
Bluefiveoh

The VP9 is not more ergonomic its only more customizable because of the replaceable side panels but the actual ergonomics are almost identical and because of the replaceable side panels the grip gives when squeezing hard for 2 and 3 shots bursts. Having shot both the trigger is better in the PPQ and it has a far better reset. Everything else with the 2 guns is so similar its not worth even bringing up. The price however is a difference where the PPQ is quite a bit less and a much better track record of reliability makes the PPQ the… Read more »

Dennis
Guest
Dennis

I bought the PPQ 45 and love it. Trigger is light and predictable. Also have the M&P Shield 45. Great size for CC and accurate right out of the box. I know we’re talking about 9mm here, just saying

Hawkeye
Guest
Hawkeye

Hello, I am ex Military and former Police Officer. I love my Ruger LC9S Pro. Shot hundreds of rounds. Slow and rapid fire. Easy to disassemble. No problems at all. Very compact. Feels good in the hand. Easy to conceal. Does NOT have a safety switch ( I prefer no safety). Price is right!

DJGCrusader
Guest
DJGCrusader

+1 to Ruger LC9s. The trigger is excellent making it much more comfortable and accurate to fire in my experience than the Shield, it has smooth rounded edges making it comfortable while concealing, and it’s LIGHTWEIGHT so you don’t even notice it’s there. The option of a safety means it’s legal behind enemy lines in MA.

Cole E
Guest
Cole E

I’d have to agree. I’ve come full circle with the lc9. I started with the hammer fired version but the looong trigger pull made me nervous if I encountered a real threat. Otherwise, I thought it was the perfect balance, and even with the trigger, I was accurate. Next, I went to a Glock 30s. Love the knockdown power and capacity, but concealing it was a chore, and it was uncomfortable. Next, was the 40 S&W Shield. Tried to convince myself I loved the gun, but the grips weren’t right for me, the 1st gen trigger sucked, and talk about… Read more »

Nick
Guest
Nick

Love my Ruger LC9 Shoots fantastic, have the extended magazine, takes a while to get used to but fits my hand very nice. Have custom holsters for inside the waist and never feels uncomfortable nor shows through shirt.

jeff crouse
Guest
jeff crouse

Sig M11-A1

John
Guest
John

Have the same gun. First and only gun I bought so far after much research. Absolutely love it. Seriously, almost don’t even know it’s there. Never had an issue and not one of those guys who is always cleaning the gun. Run it hard and made to take it and keep on working.

Joshua Rowinski
Guest
Joshua Rowinski

I have one as well and it is awesome. Best part it’s made in the USA!

Paul
Guest
Paul

I carry the Ruger LC9s as my EDC but recently purchased a Security 9. I need more range time before making it my EDC but doning dry practicing, it feels GOOD!

Tim
Guest
Tim

Let me know what you think of the Sec9 compared to the LC9. My son(21)was eye balling the Sec9 as his very 1st purchase and wants to CC as well. Thanks from Virginia.

Dennis
Guest
Dennis

had the SR9C for about a year — got the LC9S for summer wear — both pistols GREAT — bought the Sec9 — had it about a month — got rid of it — the SR9C was much MUCH better — felt better — shot better — had zero feed problems with any of the Rugers but the Sec9 did not outdo the SR9c at all so I felt no reason to keep it — my 2 cents only

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