Review: Smith and Wesson M&P9 PC Optics ready with Vortex 6MOA Dot

Trapper Jim

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A training colleague, the late Coach and I were discussing his M&P at a carry gun match a few years back and we both had students that carried these pistols. I promised him I would look into these pistols when time and money permits. So here is the first review on my store bought Smith and Wesson M&P9 Performance Center. M&P M2.0 | Smith & Wesson (smith-wesson.com)

To go forward with this we must go backward a few years. All through the 70’s when we played with high cap 9MM pistols our limitations were the Browning HiPower and it’s descendant wannabee S&W model 59’s. Many of us Americans did not consider the Beretta as a player at that time since it was late to the party in 1976. Some of the smaller police departments and the Illinois State police carried 59’s. My wholesaler/distributor friend out of South Bend supplied a lot of these along with O’Herron of Illinois. oherron.com

We found these guns to be very dependable and hardworking. The high bore axis was welcomed on this piece as it made the transition of picking up the front sight easier to go back and forth to our revolvers. Remember, this was a time that the future of duty revolvers lie in wait. Some of us did not join the crowd so easy. Now, back to the future.

This striker fired pistol being offered by the Performance Center was ready to go right out of the box. The trigger breaks with a smooth take up and not too awful of a spongy wall. Reset is quick and haptic. Someday perhaps, actions on striker guns will feel like hammer guns but I don’t know if I will see it. The pistol comes with 4 inserts for all kinds of hand sizes, two 17 round magazines, manual and cable lock. The tall sights are very sturdy and adaptable to a suppressor barrel as well. So far, so good. Being an Optics ready gun, I broke it in on the plate rack with the irons. The sights come up quick and the gun controls very well. As you can see, I kept an open mind in trying out these Gluttonous capacity video game guns with tiny bullets. The 9mm IMHO is the best fit for this platform as the .45 is too much and the .40 is on the endangered species list. Finding a non plastic holster for this was not to difficult as I had one for a CZ Shadow that fits perfectly. Finding one made on the market now for this piece was easy with the Blade Tech Signature Series. Blade-Tech® Signature™ OWB (Outside the Waistband) Holster - Blade-Tech Holsters. Finding one in lined leather with out a creepy sweat guard is as rare as getting an apology from a Millennial.

What optic to try was my next mission. Being a Leupold and Burris man, (American Corporations) I was not ready to commit to these brands yet. So, I thought I would give Vortex a try as I am not trusting my life to a dot for the raw street yet. I figure if this Philippine made dot goes down, the only thing I will lose is a few match points or an afternoon at the range. The Amazon truck was not off my street yet when I started to open up and mount my new dot. The first thing I noticed was the 7 S&W supplied mounting plates were made out of plastic along with the cover plate on the slide. This caused me some indigestion. After all, I have been told I am particular about my guns. So I assembled the battery in it’s compartment, not an easy task mind you, and attached it to the slide. Yippee, back to the range to sight it in and discovered at the top elevation position, the bullet holes were still 10 inches low at 15 yards. Also, in adjusting the elevation and windage knobs with the supplied tool, I noticed that they felt somewhat cheesy and insecure. The nice thing about writing these reviews for INGO, I do not have to white wash my findings to sell a full page ad in a magazine or on the innerweb. So, in my research I find that I must purchase a shim (plastic as well) for this very common gun/dot combo. So $10 dollars later I now have the sight shimmed correctly and POI is within the mechanical adjusting values of the dot. It has been holding the zero for about 200 rounds now so maybe it can stay on a little longer for playing the games or use as a range toy.

Smith magazines are hard to come by at the moment so I am running 17 rd ProMags ProMag Industries with an extension to give me 21 rounds in one magazine. So far so good. I find the med/large grip insert to fit me the best and the grip texture needs nothing to improve it. Recoil is very manageable and the ambi mag release button is large enough to not need modification for the games or street.



Accuracy is very good with this pistol as from a rest I can print 3 inch groups at 25 yards. Dependability is perfect as I have had not one FTF, jam or malfunction of any kind. And another bit of good luck, is that my friends at ED Brown Products makes some neat enhancing parts for these pistols with their Fueled Series. Fueled Series (edbrown.com).



I plan on playing a few of the games with this piece this year and have to agree with Coach that they are a bargain for this market. I just wish he was around to see my report. I turned in a few sub 4 second plate rack runs with this thing and find that it is a very common grip to compare to my 1911’s.



If you see me in the CO Division one of these days, you know the relationship is in testing but strong. Otherwise, if you see me back in SS or Rev, you know the marriage went south. At any rate, I have been setting up 18 pieces of Steel in a showdown fashion to salute the late Coach with a 17+1 stage.



See you on the range. IMG_2556 (002).jpg IMG_2567 (002).jpg IMG_2565 (002).jpg IMG_2566 (002).jpg IMG_2564 (002).jpg IMG_2568 (002).jpg IMG_2569 (002).jpg
 

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Tyler-The-Piker

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I kept an open mind in trying out these Gluttonous capacity video game guns with tiny bullets.


the .40 is on the endangered species list.
 

ECS686

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Did yo use the factory plates? I biticed there is a gap between the front of the RDS and the slide. In the Handgun Combatives MRDS course I took Dave Spuldinng touched on that issue as most factory plates are not good for l iong term use Specifically mentioning that gapas one issue

As I'm curious please post if you have any if that issue that.
 

Trapper Jim

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Did yo use the factory plates? I biticed there is a gap between the front of the RDS and the slide. In the Handgun Combatives MRDS course I took Dave Spuldinng touched on that issue as most factory plates are not good for l iong term use Specifically mentioning that gapas one issue

As I'm curious please post if you have any if that issue that.
Yes and there is some good info to know on this thread. As stated in my review, the cheesy plastic plates provided by Smith gave me some butterflies in my stomach. Lame at best. I would gladly paid extra for a machined plate with good bosses. It is what it is. A cheap shortcut. Continues to support my thoughts on dots for street carry except for professional applications. I am running with the plastic so far and am up to about 500 rounds. If I stay with this piece, I will have a machined part made to my specs or by then maybe one will be available on the market someday. ZRTS are you listening?
 

Jaybird1980

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Keep a close eye on the optic installation. You don't want this to happen.
Yes and there is some good info to know on this thread. As stated in my review, the cheesy plastic plates provided by Smith gave me some butterflies in my stomach. Lame at best. I would gladly paid extra for a machined plate with good bosses. It is what it is. A cheap shortcut. Continues to support my thoughts on dots for street carry except for professional applications. I am running with the plastic so far and am up to about 500 rounds. If I stay with this piece, I will have a machined part made to my specs or by then maybe one will be available on the market someday. ZRTS are you listening?
You guys may want to contact @AllenM and see if he could help you out with a mounting plate. They look fairly simple to make just from the pics. It does appear TJ's would need to be tapered for some reason which would make it more difficult.
 
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