M500 owners are a strange lot. One of our favorite things to do is to compare the S&W 50 Mag cartridge to…well, anything, actually. Here’s why. On the left in the picture is the tried and true .22 LR (yes, first real round I ever fired, too). Next to it the ever popular 9mm, veteran of many a police side-arm. Then we have the mighty 44 Magnum of Dirty Harry fame. The .22 has a 40 gr. bullet. The 9mm a 110 gr. bullet. The 44 Mag has a 240 gr. bullet. And then, standing tall over them all, the S&W .50 Magnum. 440 gr. slug. And velocity? The 44 Mag sends its slug out around 1180 fps for a ft-lbs. energy of 741. But the 50 Mag pushes its much heavier round at over 1600 fps for an awesome 2600 ft-lbs. of energy (more than 3x the punch of the 44!). Just think of this: a .30-06 hunting rifle produces only 4% more power at the muzzle! Even Popular Mechanics did an article on the M500, available here.

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