Beretta Px4 Review: Range Tested & Reviewed
Beretta’s Px4 Storm took an interesting “twist” on gun design, but it never truly caught on. This review looks at a gun that is more interesting than worthwhile.
Lets dive into why we think this in the review below.
Beretta Px4 Specs
- Barrel Length 4 inches
- Overall Length 7.55 inches
- Capacity 17 rounds
- Action Double Action/Single Action
Beretta Px4 Background
Italian gunmaker Beretta was not an early adopter of polymer pistol designs. Their flagship 92-series guns were, and still are, metal-frame guns, as were many other notable models like the 80-series and 70-series.
Eventually though, it was time for a polymer frame model. The Px4 kept the same double action/single action trigger and decocker/safety arrangement of most Beretta models. When it was introduced, it was one of a small group of polymer pistols that were not striker fired. That group has grown in recent years to include some models in the CZ and H&K lines, but is still small when compared with the number of striker fired options.
Another key difference from the rest of the lineup is the rotating barrel. Many other brands use a tilting barrel that points upward during the recoil cycle. Other Berettas generally used a fixed barrel with a locking block assembly.
The Px4 has a related cousin in the Cx4 carbine. It does not use a rotating bolt but is a straight blowback design. Some Cx4 models accept Px4 magazines while some use the 92-series magazine. The grip, trigger, trigger guard, and overall styling of the Cx4 is reminiscent of the Px4.
Beretta Px4 Features
1 Unique rotating barrel design
2 Double Action/Single Action operation
3 Slide mounted safety/decocker
Beretta Px4 Models
The standard 9mm Px4 Storm has a 17-round magazine, but versions are available with 10-round magazines for sale in states with legal restrictions. Alternate chamberings in .40 S&W and .45 ACP are also produced.
Compact, carry, and subcompact models are available as well. A special suppressor ready model with an FDE frame and threaded barrel is called the SD F. Rounding out the Px4 family are cosmetic variants such as the Inox (stainless slide) and FDE and gray models.
Beretta Px4 Review – Our Take
The Px4’s rotating barrel system is a marked departure from their other models, and from the Browning-style tilting barrel found on most handguns. It feels different to shoot the Px4, but it’s not bad. The recoil is fairly soft. Some of that is no doubt due to the size and weight of the gun, but the rotating barrel system probably plays a role as well.
This particular gun is a rental at an indoor shooting range. It has survived somewhere around nine years of use, abuse, and neglect from thousands of customers. Cleanings and routine maintenance are neglected. The simple fact that it remains in service is a testament to its reliability.
The ergonomics of the Px4 are passable. One potential area of concern is the grip size, which may be too large for some hands. The grip shape is more blended and rounded than some squarish competitors which is an advantage. Serrations are cut into the front and rear of the slide for easy manipulation.
Both the magazine release and the slide catch are easy to reach and manipulate. While both of those controls are thankfully mundane, the absolute biggest issue with the Px4 is the decocker/safety lever. The biggest issue is the shape and sharpness of the lever. The front edge is a large, flat surface, which is sharp despite being rounded.
This is not so much an issue when purposefully interacting with the lever, but is a huge pain when working the slide. The lever is in the way when cocking the slide while grasping the rear serrations. If you accidentally hit that lever while operating the slide, the gun will be decocked when the slide goes forward. If the lever stays in the down position, the gun will be on safe. Imagine clearing a malfunction, then pulling a dead trigger. A second round of malfunction checks may be necessary to figure out what has gone wrong.
The Px4 would be a dramatically better gun if the decocker/safety was mounted on the frame rather than the slide. It would be much harder to inadvertently decock the gun or place it on safe when operating the slide. A frame mounted lever would also presumably be less of a snag point than the big pointy control which is located on both sides of the slide.
This specific Px4 has the “Type F” safety/decocker components, which appear to be the most common. Alternate types are available, including the Type C single action only, Type D double action only, and Type G which has a decocker but no safety. The Type C and D do not have a safety or decocker lever at all, and the Type G retains the lever but it does not act as a safety. Those variants would, to varying degrees, eliminate the issues with the decocker.safety lever of the Type F.
Moving away from the decocker, the Px4 deserves praise for its single action accuracy. This is a very accurate gun, particularly for a polymer frame mass-market item. I was able to hold around a 2” five-shot group at 25 yards with regular bulk 9mm FMJ ammo. Groups were less impressive when the gun was decocked. The double action trigger pull is very long and very soggy. Learning to place a double action shot and the following single action shot together will require some concerted training.
The base model Px4 retails around the $600 price point, which is better than many double action/single action pistols. It is a decent value at that price point. For well-heeled aficionados of the Px4, famed pistol smith Ernest Langdon sells improved models as well as select improved parts. The basic Px4 is not a bad gun, but with a little work it just might be a great gun.
Beretta Px4 Pros and Cons
- Very soft Recoil
- Highly accurate single action
- Poor decocker/safety design
- Slide mounted decocker/safety
Recoil is soft, but the d/a trigger is just ok
It has survived as a range gun
the safety/decocker of the Type F is terrible, but the other types are better
very accurate in single action, less amazing in double action
a $600 street price is high for a flawed gun
Reviewed by Daniel Young
Based on 14 Reviews
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Beretta Px4 Gun Deals
Beretta Px4 Ammo
Speer Gold Dot Personal Protection 9mm Luger
Cost Per Round
Fiocchi 9mm Luger 115gr FMJ
Cost Per Round
Beretta Px4 Starter Pack
So what’s next? Well, if you decide to get the Beretta Px4, you’re going to need to pick up some must-have basics. Here’s our recommendation for what you need to get started.
- Gun Cleaning Kit: Otis All Caliber Elite Range Box on Amazon or build your own personalized cleaning kit with premium components.
- Shooting Glasses: All it takes is one piece of rogue hot brass, and you’ll learn the importance of shooting glasses. But not all glasses are built the same. See our recommendations for the Best Shooting Glasses.
- Hearing Protection: Firing a gun without wearing proper ear pro can be very dangerous and detrimental to your hearing. Find out the best hearing protection for you in our full-length review.
- Storage: Check out our article on the Best Biometric Gun Safes
- Targets – If you’re wanting a great resource for shooting practice or zeroing your optics on your optics rifle or pistol, download our FREE Sighting in Targets below.
Beretta Px4 Upgrades & Accessories
Beretta Px4 Maintenance
An important aspect of owning a firearm is knowing how to field trip it ready to be cleaned. While scouring the internet we have found a great short video on the disassembly and reassembly of your Beretta Px4 which I would highly recommend.
Beretta Px4 Documents
May 26, 2023
May 26, 2023
I have owned a PX4 for several years and really like the gun. That being said, I do find the grip to be a bit large and I found the texture to be a bit slick. It was greatly improved by the addition of Talon grips. The single action accuracy is very good. The double action trigger is stiff, but that’s what you want for safety purposes. I like the decocker feature, but I would agree that the safety decocker would be better on the frame rather than the slide. However, I don’t find the decocker on the slide to be a problem when racking the slide. I think your ergonomics rating of D- is a bit harsh, but overall your ratings are fair. I would rate the gun overall as B.