Smith & Wesson M&P R8 Revolver: 3 Minute Gun Review – Smith & Wesson is one of the United States’ legendary gun manufacturers and enjoys a reputation for both quality and excellence. It’s easy to see why: the company’s history goes back nearly 170 years, plenty of time to perfect the firearm. While the company does offer several lines of semi-automatic pistols as well as rifles, it is their revolvers that are particularly noteworthy.
One of the company’s most potent revolvers is the M&P R8.
The M&P R8 is built around the N-frame, a large proprietary Smith & Wesson design that is sufficiently robust to handle the recoil from even very stout cartridges like the .44 Magnum as well as the .357 Magnum and 10mm Auto cartridges. In the case of the M&P R8, the revolver cylinder is remarkably spacious and can accommodate 8 rounds of .357 Magnum, giving the shooter a remarkable capacity for a revolver.
Though not a particularly young cartridge, the .357 Magnum is nothing to sneeze at, and can consequently produce significant recoil. For new shooters, target practice, or weekend plinkers, the M&P R8 can also accommodate the .38 Special cartridge and offer reduced recoil and a more comfortable shooting experience.
Smith & Wesson currently offers the M&P R8 in just a single variant that comes with a 5-inch barrel as well as synthetic rubberized grips with finger grooves that offer shooters a firm grip surface. What is also very noticeable about the M&P R8 is the all-stainless steel frame’s matte back finish which reduces light reflection, as well as the two assessor mounting points above and below the barrel.
The revolver’s cylinder is made of a lightweight scandium alloy that is lighter than steel without sacrificing strength. The revolver also comes with tuned action as well as a performance trigger along with a trigger stop that allows for more precise shooting in some circumstances.
The M&P R8 is part of Smith & Wesson’s Performance Center line of firearms, a class of firearms that feature improved components — like triggers and actions — for more precise shooting. The company explains that their Performance Center lineup “originate[s] from standard designs or are created from the ground up. From hand-cutting and fitting to fine tuning for precision, these firearms are top performers. Products from the Performance Center are the ultimate expression of old-world craftsmanship blended with modern technology.”
Though certainly a very high-quality build, the M&P R8 is by no means a cheap revolver: Smith & Wesson lists the revolver at $1,360 on their website.
In the M&P R8, Smith & Wesson has designed a very high quality, high capacity revolver that offers shooters cartridge flexibility when shooting. For those on the hunt for a high-capacity and high-quality revolver, the M&P R8 is a solid choice.
Caleb Larson is a Defense Writer based in Europe. He holds a Master of Public Policy and covers U.S. and Russian security, European defense issues, and German politics and culture.