.223 vs .308 vs 7.62x39

Discussion in 'General Rifle Discussion' started by cakesterkiller, Dec 3, 2012.

  1. cakesterkiller

    cakesterkiller New Member

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    so im sure we can all agree that these are the three dominant rifle rounds out there. but which one is best? what makes it the best? im not interested in the guns they're fired out of im only interested in your opinion of the round and for the ease of comparison lets just assume we're talking about semi auto performance cause I'll probably never own a class 3. things that made my decisions for me were weight, recoil, accuracy, cost and knockdown plus other little things. taking all of those things into consideration my vote goes for the .223 taking the cake and .308 coming in at number two and sorry to all you AK guys out there but the 7.62x39 rounds ruin a perfectly good rifle design... just my opinion what's yours?
     

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  2. magnumman

    magnumman New Member

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    308 for everything except recoil and price but the recoil won't kill you and the price isn't horrible either
     

  3. locutus

    locutus Well-Known Member Supporter

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    For CQB,
    5.56X45
    7.63X51
    7.62X39
    in that order.

    For long range work,
    7.62X51
    5.56X45
    7.62X39

    For ammo cost
    7.62X39
    5.56X45
    7.62X51

    For accuracy of rifles chambered
    5.56X45
    7.62X51
    7.62X39

    If I could only have one it would be a 5.56. If I could have two, I'd add the 7.62X51

    Since I can have all three, I do!:p:p
     
  4. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    Each has a niche. The 7.62 X 39 for inexpensive, reasonable power, man size accuracy to "maybe" 200 yards. The 5.56 for slightly more expensive, reasonable power, man size accuracy to 400 yards or so (for most folks). The 7.62 X 51 for even more expensive, high power, man size accuracy to 600 yards (once again for most folks).

    Depending on the "mission" each has a purpose. IMHO there is little the 'X 39 will do that the 5.56 cannot do better (with the right ammo). The 'X 51 is in a different category (battle rifle cartridge) than the other two so comparison is a little unfair.
     
  5. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

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    Well, two of the cartridges you are asking about are "intermediate" cartridges which are designed to work best in short light carbines at ranges inside of 300-400 meters.

    The .308 which is similar to the 7.62x51 NATO round kind of misses the intermediate cartridge niche. Sure it is a shortened .30-06 round but still requires a larger heavier rifle and has a bit more velocity and energy than required for intermediate distances. Then there is the 5.45x39 round out there that isn't even mentioned.

    The 5.56 and 7.62x39 are both good cartridges in their designed effective range envelope. The 5.56 may edge out the 7.62x39 in quality of manufacture and QA threshold thta it is held to. For inherent accuracy though there is nothing wrong with either cartridge. The 7.62x39 case is actually used as teh basis of some very accurate match cartridges because of the more "square load" that the case affoards, which actually allows for more consistent powder burn times. 6mm PPC is one such cartridge.

    As someone else said, a lot would depend on the job that needs to get done. Defeating soft armor, auto glass, car bodies, light cover and still having enough energy to incapacitate a hostile may be performed better by the 7.62x39.

    Control under rapid fire, and ability to pack more ammo over a longer period of time and in less space may become a consideration to some. Being manufactured to a higher standard and needing precision out of a mil grade round may be better represented by the 5.56, as well as limiting penetration in close quarters.

    No clear winner.
     
  6. Jpyle

    Jpyle New Member

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    Dont overlook the 300 Blackout which seems to be gaining in popularity as an alternative to both the 7.62 x 39 and the 5.56.
     
  7. John_Deer

    John_Deer New Member

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    My mission is killing critters the 308 wins without any thought. If I am going to drop $1000 on a rifle none of the selections make the grade. The 30/06 and it's versatility kicks the snot out of any cartridge mentioned by the OP. I am to old and my body is to wore out to even consider a combat mission. Hell just shoot and roll is all I can handle in combat tactics. I can get that done with a 30/06 BAR. By the time I shoot five shots I am done rolling.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2012
  8. 303tom

    303tom Well-Known Member

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    The .308/7.62 NATO hand down, Why ? Just because it is.................
     
  9. Cheeseman

    Cheeseman New Member

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    I have 2 .308s Win M 100 and Ruger Gunsight Scout, so .308 my vote
     

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  10. jpattersonnh

    jpattersonnh Active Member

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    OP, Everyone will have a different opinion. Put the 7.62x39 in a short action bolt and it is a great cartridge capible of very accurate work. Not being a small person, I have not found the 7.62x51 an issue in any platform, although the cycle rate seems to be less in autos. Not a big fan if 5.56 unless it is a bolt gun. Now 5.45x39 is a dandy little cartridge that performs much better in the existing semi and auto platforms that it is common in. 7.62x51 has zero in common w/ either 5.56 or 7.62x39. 7.62x39 was original developed in the Soviet Union because of their experiance w/ the 7.62x25 in the burp gun. Instead of a sub gun, just send in waves of men w/ 7.62x39 and over run the enemy.
     
  11. jjfuller1

    jjfuller1 New Member

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    5.56.. availabily. the SHTF, and all governament, swat, police military will have ammo to use, trade for, or pillage
    7.62x51... lethality at longer ranges
    7.62x39... great for CQC, but not much else. also, not as available as 5.56


    when it comes to getting shot i'm positive all of them are up to the task!
     
  12. jpattersonnh

    jpattersonnh Active Member

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    This is why you try to be the shooter!!;)
     
  13. jjfuller1

    jjfuller1 New Member

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    more truth than you know!!
     
  14. John_Deer

    John_Deer New Member

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    You are right about the 7.62x39. I have two SKS's that are super accurate. I probably went through a dozen of them to find those two. They just lack the knock down power to shoot a deer in the shoulder and put him down. Using quality soft point ammo I had to get a dog to find every deer I shot, even when the bullet went through both shoulder blades. If I had made the same shot with a larger caliber the deer would have been running on his chin.
     
  15. JonM

    JonM Moderator

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    you cannot discuss those rounds in their usefulness without discussing the firearms that utilize them. its just not possible to get a complete understanding without doing so.

    traditionally the limiting factor of using a 308 for cqb has been the weight recoil and flash from using it in a shorter barrel. with the advent of things like the scar17 in a sbr config and utilizing a good shorty type supressor that ca handle the excess gasses its a doable round for that role.

    the 7.62x39 isnt a good cqb round because there just isnt a good ak type gun that effectively eliminates or reduces its recoil and muzzle jump. while it can be suppressed great lengths must be jumped through to get a concentricly threaded barrel with the right threads to fit suppressors. the 7.62x39 was designed to fight a midrange conflict across the open fields and forests of europe and eastern russia. its a round thats time passed 30 years ago but remains popular because its a fun round chambered in a cheap fun gun. think mosin 91/30. even the russkies are phasing it out in favor of the 7.62x54r and 5.45.

    the ar15 fulfills the cqb role excessivly well but it too falls flat on extended range engagements

    the main reason no armies field a 308 is because its only really good for longer range dmr/sniping roles altho socom is using the scar17 in 308 which does all three cqb/midrange/longrange very well.

    those rounds dont exist in a vaccuum