300 Blackout FAQs

The 300 AAC Blackout had its inspiration from the 300-221 or 300 Whisper.
The 300 Whisper is a 221 Remington Fireball necked-up to .30 caliber. Is a best used as a short to medium range hunting round and Personal Home Defense. Larger grain bullets are perfect for use in subsonic suppressed applications. This wildcat was very popular in New Zealand where one is required to hunt with a silencer. (Too bad the cook county politicians in the state of Illinois do not believe in common sense gun regulations.)
Terminal ballistics were more than adequate for medium sized game as the 240gr Sierra MatchKing would tumble violently on impact and often leave a knife shaped exit wound.
This cartridge is perfectly suited for pistols such as the Thompson/Centerand even the AR-15 rifle, the cartridge offers accuracy combined with a low report due to it’s efficient, small case size and resultant subsonic velocity. Reduced charges in a suppressed barrel have been described as quieter than a typical .177 air rifle.
“Whisper®” is a registered trademark of SSK Industries and much credit should be given to J.D. Jones.
The 300 AAC Blackout is the SAMMI vetted version.
Their Project goals were:
– Create a reliable compact 30-cal solution for AR platform
– Utilize existing inventory magazines while retaining their full capacity
– Create the optimal platform for sound and flash suppressed fire
– Create compatible supersonic ammo that matches 7.62x39mm ballistics
– Provide the ability to penetrate barriers with high-mass projectiles
– Provide all capabilities in a lightweight, durable, low recoiling package
Meeting these goals allowed their development team to negate many of the perceived drawbacks inherent to other large caliber cartridges when used in the M4 platform. Colt Firearms and other arms makers had previously chambered AR pattern rifles and carbines in various 30 caliber rounds but several issues were encountered. In the case of the 7.62×39, it has a relatively severe case angle which causes feeding issues in the M4/AR15. A specially modified AK47 magazines were tried and even then results were less than outstanding. Modified bolts were also needed owing to its larger case head diameter. Rounds such as the 6.8spc and 6.5 Grendel had similar part-interchangeability issues but did allow for the use of the standard M4/M16 30 round magazine albeit with a reduced capacity.
Wildcats such as the 300 Whisper and 300-221 addressed these issues but their wide spread use in single shot handguns along with the lack of an industry standard cartridge dimension meant that a great number of the popular loads on both the supersonic and subsonic end of the spectrum were less than ideal in the AR pattern weapons. Many of these rounds required an excessively long overall cartridge length that would prohibit feeding in a STANAG magazine while using powder charges that were not compatible with the pressure requirements of the M4 carbine. This was particularly noticeable when using subsonic ammunition in conjunction with a silencer as short stroking and excessive fouling would occur similar to that which was seen in the earliest variants of the M16 in Vietnam.
By keeping the M4 in mind as the primary host during load development the designers were able to work up a host of cartridges that would satisfy not only the ballistic requirements set forth but also ensure mechanical reliability with the fewest changes to the weapon itself with only a simple barrel change being necessary for a complete conversion.
Advanced Armament Corp. in cooperation with Remington Defense, under the direction of AAC’s Research and Development Director Robert Silvers, lead to the 300 AAC BLACKOUT approval by SAAMI on January 17th, 2011.
Loading the 300 AAC Blackout is similar to the 300-221 and one would think that the data would be synonymous, however due to the lack of supervision and consistency of chambers of 300 Whisper Rifles and Pistols we do not recommend using 300 Whisper Data in 300 Blackout Chambered Rifles. That said one could tweak hand loads very well if fully informed provided standard safe load development and procedures are practiced.

Bullet Vel. (fps) K. E. Barrel 50 Yards K.E. ft-LBS 100 Yards K.E. ft-LBS 150 Yards K.E. ft-LBS 200 Yards K.E. ft-LBS
110 Hornady 2337 1334 18 -0.3 1165 0 1013 -1.8 879 -6 761
125 Nosler 2231 1382 18 -0.3 1239 0 1109 -1.9 990 -6.3 883
175 Sierra 1769 1216 18 0.3 1116 0 1023 -3.6 938 -10.7 861
220 Sierra 1010 498 16 3.2 480 0 464 -12.4 449 -34.7 435
55G 5.56 3026 1118 25 -0.07 976 0 848 -0.5 734 -2.6 629
240G 45ACP 900 431 N/A 4.7 392 0 358 -17.6 327 49.3 300

The 45 ACP has documented great stopping power. Numbers can be a bit miss leading and the proof is in the pudding. We did not add the Talyor Knock Down to this. There is much open debate on what’s best. On a quck look it looks like for medium range subsonic applications this bullet drops just as quick as Al Gores pants during a hotel massage….However it’s a close range favorite.
The 5.56 carries respectable and disputable reputation. Much of the reports of its stopping power is diluted with military M855 ammo which does not expand but may tumble. Our Focus is Law Enforcement and Home Defense so we chose the Hornady TAP which has a habit of transferring more energy to the target than standard NATO 5.56.
Still inside 100 or even 200 yards all supersonic 300 AAC Blackout Ammo beats Nato 5.56 for hunting and defense applications. I call this the 3030 lever action equivalent which has fed more with venison than any other caliber in the USA.
In Germany deer hunting is common with the .223 simply because the state restricts the amount of powder a citizen can own. For hand loaders who hunt with their target rifles, this is a severe impediment but at least not as bad as other restrictions from socialized nations in Europe. Given the small amount of powder required the 300 AAC Blackout should become a very popular hunting ant target round were such restrictions exist. The Kinetic Energy is much greater at 200 yards. One only has to to adjust for the drop.

The bottom line is The 300 AAC Blackout is a very efficient close to medium Hunting and Defense Round. With the right bullet this would be by first choice over the NATO 5.56 in feeding or defending my family. For Subsonic Applications its ballistic coefficient makes it the better option opposed to the 45ACP.