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I have been considering purchasing a 500 S&W but I have noticed there are two different types of compensators on the model depending on what seller you are getting it from. One comp has venting on two sides & the other has venting only on the top. See pictures below. What is the difference & are these an issue when using lead versus jacketed rounds? Thanks
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The compensators that the 460 has is a different design than that one the 500. And yes, there is a markable difference in the 2 designs.
The compensator with the long slots are for Lead bullets, and the one with the holes on top are for plated bullets.
 

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Either, as long as you have the correct compensator. Otherwise, stick with jacketed bullets. When you buy the pistol it should have both compensators with it. If you get it used, you can usually buy them thru S&W customer service for around $50 each.
 

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I have the one in my sig, your 2nd one down. I shoot what I like through it no issues. I suggest you rent one at the range mate. I love mine though..Good luck

thewelshm
 

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My 460V has the design like the top image, and a small amt of lead comes out every shot and builds up around the compensator and sight area. I really dislike the design, however it seems you can get the interchangeable front sight as an option on the 500, which I do like. The lower image has a compensator design that should better help manage recoil and maybe keep lead off of the sight area, but I can't tell if the sight is pinned or interchangeable. In the end, I replaced my comp with a blanked one.
 

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Looks like I'm late to the party, but the comp with the top vents only, the one the user cannot remove, is for both lead and jacketed bullets. This is the one shown on the 500 in your original post. For the 500's that have two different user changeable comps, the one with top ports only is for jacketed bullets only. The one without top ports is for lead bullets only.
 
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