The 300 BO is likely the most successful alternative AR rifle cartridge to exist outside of 22 LR. There are lots of reason for its success. The first is parts commonality. The 300 Blackout allows you to use standard AR 15 everything outside of the barrel and gas system. Magazines, BCGs, everything is compatible. All you need to convert your gun in a 300 Blackout Barrel and appropriate length gas system. Although, it’s a lot easier to convert a gun with a dedicated 300 Blackout upper receiver. The real question is a 300 Blackout rifle for you?
Of course, it could be, but let’s talk some advantages and disadvantages to the platform.
What the 300 Blackout is Perfect For
The 300 Black is a 30 caliber projectile in a 5.56 body. The use of a 30 caliber projectile allows the projectile to be a wide variety of weights from 110 grains to 220 grains. This means the rounds can be subsonic or supersonic and the weapon can cycle both reliably.
The presence of subsonic rounds means its easy to effectively suppress this gun. Subsonic loads have no supersonic crack so they can reduce the sound of the gun significantly. So the 300 Blackout is perfect if you are going to run a can.
The 300 Black also performs extremely well out of short barrels. The 5.56 is designed for a 20-inch barrel and as you start trimming the barrel you lose ballistic performance. The 300 Blackout reaches peak ballistic potential at only 9 inches of barrel. This caliber is perfect for SBRs and AR pistols with short barrels.
The 300 BO is perfect for home defense, especially in an SBR/pistol configuration with a suppressor. This gives you a potent, penetrating round with a lot of noise reduction.
What the 300 Blackout isn’t for
The 300 Blackout isn’t for long range shooting. By long range I mean its no 6.5 Creedmoor, 308, or 224 Valkyrie. The 300 Blackout has a variety of effective ranges depending on the load you are using. Subsonic loads have less range than supersonic loads.
Photo credit: Rex Nanorum
As a hunting load for humane reasons, it’s more of a short range round. Inside 100 to 200 yards the 300 Blackout is a deer slaying machine. While it’s tempting to suppress the weapon and use a subsonic round you are risking an inhumane kill. The heavier 220-grain rounds are very similar to a 45 ACP when it comes to ballistics. Stick to expanding supersonic loads, and you can still use a can to reduce a good amount of noise.
300 Blackout and You
300 Black is a great round, a potent round, a killer round. It’s well designed and suited for a variety of roles. 300 Black ammunition is here to stay. Ammo prices are dropping, and the round is gaining acceptance. Is it for you though? Let me know below.