The .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol) and .50 Action Express (AE) are two distinct handgun cartridges, each with its own characteristics and intended purposes. Here's a comparison of the .45 ACP and .50 AE:
- Bullet Diameter: The .45 ACP uses a .451-inch (11.45mm) diameter bullet.
- Bullet Weight: Typical bullet weights for .45 ACP ammunition range from 185 to 230 grains, with 230 grains being a common standard.
- Muzzle Velocity: Muzzle velocities for .45 ACP loads typically range from 750 to 900 feet per second (fps), depending on the bullet weight and load.
- Recoil: The .45 ACP generates moderate to moderate-heavy recoil, which many shooters find manageable.
- Capacity: Due to the larger bullet size and case dimensions, handguns chambered in .45 ACP often have slightly lower magazine capacities compared to smaller caliber handguns.
- Use: The .45 ACP is a popular choice for self-defense, law enforcement, and competitive shooting. It is known for its stopping power and has a long history of military service, particularly in the M1911 pistol.
- Bullet Diameter: The .50 AE uses a .500-inch (12.7mm) diameter bullet, making it one of the largest handgun cartridges in terms of bullet diameter.
- Bullet Weight: .50 AE ammunition typically features heavy bullets, often in the range of 300 to 350 grains.
- Muzzle Velocity: Muzzle velocities for .50 AE loads range from around 1,300 to 1,500 fps, providing substantial kinetic energy.
- Recoil: The .50 AE generates significant recoil, which can be quite stout, even in large and heavy firearms.
- Capacity: Handguns chambered in .50 AE typically have low magazine capacities due to the size of the cartridges.
- Use: The .50 AE is known for its extreme power and is primarily used in large and heavy semi-automatic pistols, such as the Desert Eagle. It is not a common choice for self-defense but is often used for hunting large game or as a novelty cartridge in shooting sports.
In summary, the .45 ACP is a versatile and widely used cartridge known for its balance of power, recoil management, and effectiveness in self-defense and law enforcement applications. The .50 AE, on the other hand, is a much larger and more powerful cartridge, primarily used for hunting or as a specialty round in unique handguns like the Desert Eagle. The choice between these cartridges should be based on the intended use and the shooter's ability to handle the recoil of the .50 AE.