Best 357 Revolvers – 2020 Complete Review

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Are you in search of the best .357 revolver? If so, then you’re in the right place. This handgun is probably the most powerful when it comes to delivering some serious damage with each shot. Not to mention, it can be one of the most accurate and powerful handguns available on the market.

Finding a revolver for your intended purpose will take some time and detective work. But you need to find one that will fit you best. Fortunately, we’ve put together a list of the seven best .357 revolvers currently on the market as of this writing.

Before we get to the list itself, we’ll discuss what the difference is between a regular .357 and a .357 magnum. Additionally, we’ll talk about how accurate a .357 is and what characteristics and features make one stand out among the rest on the market.

Comparison of the Best .357 Revolvers

PRODUCTDETAILS
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Smith & Wesson Model 686

  • Best overall .357 revolver.
  • Grip made from synthetic materials.
  • Made from stainless steel materials.
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Ruger GP100 .357 Mag

  • 6-round capacity.
  • Made from synthetic materials.
  • Runner-up for best overall .357 revolver.
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Chiappa Rhino 40DS

  • 4-inch barrel length.
  • Weighs just under 2 pounds.
  • Best 357 revolver for the money.
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Smith & Wesson Model 60 .357 Magnum

  • 5-round capacity.
  • Best .357 revolver for concealed carry.
  • Fixed rear sight for better accuracy and precise shooting.
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Taurus Model 608 6.5" .357 Magnum

  • 8-round capacity.
  • Best 8-shot 357 revolver.
  • Barrel measured at 6.5 inches in length.
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Ruger LCR 1.875" .357 Magnum

  • 5-round capacity.
  • Best small 357 revolver.
  • Frame made from aerospace grade aluminum.
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Taurus M605 .357 Magnum Revolver

  • 5-round capacity.
  • Two-inch barrel length.
  • Best Taurus 357 revolver.
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What is the Difference Between .357 and a .357 Magnum?

One of the major differences between the two is obvious: ballistics. It is known that a .357 magnum can turn an apple into applesauce, which means it can destroy any soft target that a magnum round can come in contact with. The magnum rounds are also much larger than regular .357 rounds. The magnum can be considered as the larger version of a .38 special while regular .357 rounds might be a larger counterpart to a .40 caliber or a 9mm

How Accurate is a .357 Revolver?

The short answer: it depends. It will likely depend on the kind of pistol you’re using. On average, a revolver tends to be effectively accurate when it comes to hitting targets at around 25 to 30 yards.

It may also depend upon the application, as well. Whether outdoors or indoors at a range, target shooters may be able to go beyond this range. Outdoors, a .357 could go a little bit beyond 30 yards (possibly 40 yards). 

What Makes These the Best of the Year?

There are some characteristics and features that make a .357 stand out among the rest of the pack. You must know what they are so you can choose one that looks good and performs quite well to fit your standards. Remember, some .357 revolvers excel better than others, depending on the application. Here are some characteristics and features that make these the best in the business:

Price

As a budget shopper, there’s a good chance you’ll be looking at the price tag first before moving on to some of the other features and characteristics. We cannot stress the following enough when it comes to finding something on a budget: invest in the best quality that fits your budget. Don’t go for cheap, as you may unknowingly sacrifice quality, among other things. That alone can lead to a lot of disappointment.

High-Quality Materials

Every great gun is made from high-quality materials that make it last a long time. But that doesn’t mean you should be complacent. They still need to be cleaned from time to time. But these materials are designed to handle multiple amounts of the impact that stems from gunfire and even some bumping and banging (like in a run and gun situation). 

What Application Will it be Used For

As mentioned before, a revolver can be used for general purposes. Yet, we can say for certain that one can have the potential to excel at some applications (i.e.--target shooting, self-defense, etc.). So it should be imperative to know some of the pistol’s performance capabilities, like accuracy, so you can tell whether or not it will suffice in a specific application. 

Quick Take - The Best .357 Revolvers

These are our recommendations for the best .357 revolvers:

  1. Smith & Wesson Model 686
  2. Ruger GP100 .357 Mag
  3. Chiappa Rhino 40DS

Review of the Best .357 Revolvers

The following is a list of seven of the best .357 revolvers currently on the market. While you go through the list, you should make a note of all the characteristics and features of each revolver. This way, if you find one that matches the description of your dream revolver, you can find one that’s close enough.

Remember: close enough is a lot better than nothing at all. Now, let’s take a look at the first .357 revolver on our list -our best overall choice:

Pros

  • Excellent for various applications
  • Accurate across various distances
  • Super durable construction, can take quite a beating
  • Versatile, works as both a single and double-action revolver
  • The grip is durable and provides excellent stability for shooting

Cons

  • It may be a little tough to reload at times
  • Cocking the hammer back can be a little stiff
  • The cylinder may be a little difficult to remove

What Recent Buyers Report

This revolver was impressive, according to many new buyers. They reported that they were able to hit their targets dead-on accurately at distances like 20 to 30 yards. They were also quite impressed with the firepower this revolver had. One user said this revolver was like a cannon. He also added that aside from target shooting, he also used it for home defense, just in case invaders dared to break into his home.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This revolver is made from the best materials, therefore, it lasts longer than most magnums on the market. The grip is made from a synthetic polymer material that provides not only a superior grip, but it gives way to better stability, regardless of whether you’re shooting with both hands or one. Coupled with stability, it will provide you excellent accuracy and precision each time you shoot.

Who Will Use This Most

This revolver will have its uses across many applications. So it makes a lot of sense for users who rely on this revolver in applications like home defense, target shooting, and yes, even handgun hunting. If you have a bit of a varmint problem, there is no question about what a powerful revolver like a .357 can accomplish.

Bottom Line

The Smith & Wesson Model 686 will likely stand out as one of your favorites if you want something that’s built to last and able to do some serious damage. Once you’ve fired off a revolver like this, there may be no going back.

Pros

  • Excellent across many applications
  • Easy to load, only takes a few minutes
  • Reliable, doesn’t jam after multiple rounds are fired
  • Small and concealable, great for EDC carry
  • Super-durable construction 

Cons

  • Might not be suitable for smaller hands
  • Breaking in may take a little longer for some
  • Hammer may be a little difficult to cock back at times

What Recent Buyers Report

New buyers were able to use this revolver and walk away really impressed. Most of them were using this for concealed carry and had been able to carry this using their favorite holster. One of the users added that he also uses it for target practice. Speaking of which, the pistol can hit targets effectively from about 30 yards out.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This all-black revolver is another model made from high-quality materials made to take a beating. So it will handle a good amount of impacts, like multiple gunfire and recoil. In short, it’s built to last long. Since it’s small in size, it will make a great concealed carry pistol that will allow you to use it if you’re caught in a dangerous situation. While you may not ever use it or find yourself in danger, it is ideal to be prepared just in case.

Who Will Use This Most

This will be mostly used by concealed carry users, whether you’re just starting out or are a seasoned vet considering an additional handgun. Either way, this pistol is at the right size to keep on you at all times. If you want something that will keep you prepared at all times so you’re ready for any threats that may endanger you or your family, this is the revolver you can rely on.

Bottom Line

The Ruger GP100 .357 Double-Action Revolver is small, but packs a powerful punch. So it will stand out as a leader in concealed carry revolvers. If you need something that will make a great addition to your concealed carry arsenal, this might be right up your alley.

Best for the Money: 
Chiappa Rhino 40DS

Pros

  • Little to no felt recoil
  • Affordable for most budgets
  • Great for many applications
  • Durable construction, built to last
  • Excellent for EDC concealed carry

Cons

  • None

What Recent Buyers Report

Most recent buyers were happy with this revolver. A majority of the users were concealed carry practitioners looking for an alternative to their current concealed carry handguns as a way of having variety. One user said he uses a 9mm most days, but also uses this pistol as an alternative concealed carry handgun on other days. Either way, he’s confident that he is prepared for anything that may happen to endanger him or his family.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This revolver is lightweight, small in length, but packs quite a punch. Who says small things are not as powerful? It is for these reasons we consider this one of the best .357 revolvers in the business. On top of that, the fiber optic sight makes the pistol stand out. It will give you better accuracy and precision than any other small-sized .357 on the market.

Who Will Use This Most

This .357 will be another option for concealed carry users to consider. But it will be the better option for users who hold accuracy and precision to a high standard. If you’re a fan of the fiber optic sights that make this revolver stand out, you’d be hard-pressed to find something quite like this anywhere else.

Bottom Line

The Chiappa 40DS will be your most affordable choice if you’re looking for a reliable .357 for concealed carry and on a budget. Given that it's considered a budget revolver, it performs much better than many cheap and low-quality models. As for quality, it’s miles ahead of most cheap revolvers.

Best .357 Revolver For Concealed Carry:
Smith & Wesson Model 60 .357 Magnum

Pros

  • It can fit most holsters
  • Excellent for concealed carry
  • Accurate at various distances
  • Easy to load, takes a couple of minutes
  • The grip is durable and allows for great stability

Cons

  • None

What Recent Buyers Report

As expected, this .357 revolver impressed a lot of new users. Most of them had OWB holsters that were designed to securely hold this revolver in place. One user said this pistol was easy to carry and didn’t add any additional discomfort whenever he holsters it. Accuracy-wise, most users reported hitting targets up to 30 yards away with effectiveness at outdoor ranges.

Why it Stands Out to Us

To say that this is the perfectly-sized concealed carry revolver is an understatement. It’s the epitome of a concealed carry revolver. It’s small, doesn’t bulge in most holsters, and can be discreet  whenever you’re out and about. This stands out as the best EDC revolver you can have on hand whenever you want to be prepared for any potential dangers that may threaten your life. At five rounds, it’s just enough for you to take out the threat in a matter of seconds. Plus, it’s easy to load, so you’ll be able to add more rounds in a fast amount of time once you get the hang of it.

Who Will Use This Most

Beginners and seasoned vets alike looking for a great concealed carry handgun will want to use this revolver to their advantage. And why not? It’s the perfect size, it has enough capacity for a self-defense application, and it’s easy to use for most shooters. It might be your primary handgun for concealed carry if you so choose.

Bottom Line

If you want something considered the best of the best when it comes to a revolver for concealed carry, the Model 60 from Smith & Wesson might just be exactly what you’re looking for. At the right size and with the right kind of firing power, you’ll be confident that you’re prepped to take on any threats headed your way.

Best 8-Shot Revolver: 
Taurus Model 608 6.5" .357 Magnum

Pros

  • Reliable and doesn’t jam easily
  • It can be used for most applications
  • Durable construction, aesthetically sharp, as well
  • Can hit most targets from 50 yards out and is quite accurate.
  • The grip is durable and also provides stability and better accuracy

Cons

  • Hammer may be a little stiff initially
  • May not be suitable for concealed carry
  • The cylinder may be a little difficult to pull out at times

What Recent Buyers Report

Most users were quick to give high remarks on this pistol. They were quite happy with the eight shots at their disposal across many applications. One user said this was his go-to revolver for both target shooting and home defense. Either way, he was quite happy with the accuracy and reliability he is consistently getting out of it.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This .357 has more capacity than some of the others on our list. But it gives you a good amount to work with, regardless of whether you’re in a home defense or target shooting situation. Either way, you’ll be able to have more than enough on hand. The grip is also proven to give you better handling and stability so you can shoot straight and never lose control over your pistol due to the small amounts of felt recoil.

Who Will Use This Most

This will likely be used as more of a weekend gun if you’re a regular at the range. Or it can be used for situational uses such as home defense. Either way, this revolver will have its uses one way or another. Since the barrel is a little longer than most of the .357 revolvers on the list, it stands out as possibly one of the more accurate. As a rule, remember the following: the longer the barrel, the more accurate it might be.

Bottom Line

The Taurus 608 is a great eight-shot revolver that will work to your advantage in a target shooting or home defense situation. With this many rounds at your disposal, you’ll swear its more than enough. But there is no such thing as having too many rounds to fire off with.

Best Small .357 Revolver:
Ruger LCR 1.875" .357 Magnum

Pros

  • Ridiculously lightweight
  • Accurate across various distances
  • Excellent for concealed carry and EDC use
  • Excels in both target shooting and self-defense
  • Super durable construction, can take on impact and beatings

Cons

  • It may be a little difficult to load at times
  • The cylinder may be a little stiff to move
  • May not fit in some concealed carry holsters

What Recent Buyers Report

New buyers were happy with the revolver for a few good reasons. One, they were able to effectively hit their targets consistently within 20 to 25 yards. Also, they were able to put this to the test in target practicing applications and found this to be great for casual and competitive target shooters. But not to be outdone, some have relied on this for EDC use.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This is a small, lightweight revolver made from high-quality aluminum that is tough as nails and can handle beating after beating. It’s aerospace quality, so it might as well have been developed by NASA for all we know. In short, this is a small but durable revolver that can handle a good amount of high-pressure situations. So if you’re in the heat of competition or in a life and death situation, this .357 revolver is guaranteed to be reliable in the times you need it most.

Who Will Use This Most

This will be an excellent EDC pistol if you choose to use it that way. Alternatively, it will have its place in the sun as a target shooting pistol you can use both casually and for competitive purposes. Don’t be surprised if you end up using this for just about any other application you can think of.

Bottom Line

The Ruger LCR might be one of the best-concealed carry revolvers due to its size. But the firing power will be quite impressive. If you want something that is small, tough as nails, and packs a powerful punch, this revolver might just be what the doctor ordered. Who says small revolvers can’t be this good?

Best Taurus .357 Revolver:
Taurus M605 .357 Magnum Revolver

Pros

  • Concealable for EDC use
  • Excellent grip and stability
  • Effectively accurate at 25 yards out
  • Hammer is smooth and easy to pull back
  • Durable all over, takes on abuse and impact

Cons

  • None

What Recent Buyers Report

A lot of new buyers were looking for a compact .357 revolver that is concealable, durable, and reliable for the most part. They were satisfied with this revolver, since it checks off all those boxes on the list. They also mentioned they were able to quickly cock back the hammer and get a shot off. Quick shooting and loading are two of the best attributes they were able to get out of this.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The barrel is two inches long, which makes it the shortest on the list. That alone makes it a small enough revolver for concealed carry purposes. Whether you use it for concealed carry or not, it’s strong and reliable enough to get you through any application. Plus, it might last you years or even decades (assuming you regularly take the best care of it).

Who Will Use This Most

Expect this .357 revolver to be used in self-defense or EDC carry applications. It does have an effective range to take down a target from a decent, but safe distance. Alternatively, you can use this as one of the alternative handguns that you can use for target shooting purposes.

Bottom Line

If you’re a fan of the Taurus brand revolvers, you may want to consider giving the M605 a much closer look. It's compact, durable, and can deliver a good amount of firepower like any other small handgun out there. Don’t be surprised if this is something that lasts you a long time.

What Are The Best Uses For a .357 Revolver? 

A great revolver is great for general purposes (especially a .357 revolver). But there may be some applications that a .357 revolver can excel at. The following are a few of the best uses and applications for a .357 revolver:

Concealed Carry/EDC

Most pistols used for concealed carry and EDC use are growing in popularity across many handguns. Of course, revolvers are no exception to this rule. As long as it's compact, there’s a good chance it will serve the purpose of being a concealed carry revolver that can get the job done whenever you need to use it.

Target Shooting

Whether you’re shooting for fun or competition purposes, you’ll enjoy using a revolver like this to shoot at targets. If you compete in shooting contests, you’ll need a revolver that will excel in terms of accuracy. In competition, that’s the attribute that will count the most. The better accuracy you have, the better chance you’ll be able to get an edge on the competition.

Handgun Hunting

Is it possible to hunt with a revolver? Yes. But it won’t be for big game hunting. Typically, it will be used for a different kind of hunting -- varmints. These include invasive critters that tend to destroy your property and even small predators that harass your livestock like chickens or cattle. These revolvers are powerful enough to knock down a small game target from some pretty good distances.

Benefits of Investing in a Quality .357 Revolver

If you’re not investing in a .357 revolver, there’s a good chance you’ll miss out on a lot of awesome perks. Here’s what you’ll enjoy should you find the best .357 revolver for your use:

Faster Loading and Reloading

Yes, the revolver doesn’t have a clip or magazine like a regular pistol. But it does have the capacity for you to load the cylinder faster with just a few rounds. Plus, it’s a lot easier to load than your typical pistol magazine that tends to get harder to load before it’s even filled.

Concealable

As expected, most of the .357 revolvers are small in size. That means you can conceal it in a holster (preferably an OWB one). You can take it with you where concealed carry is allowed and be prepared to use it just in case you’re ever caught in a dangerous situation where you have to use it.

Excellent Firepower

Like the .357 magnum, the .357 revolvers indeed have some firepower that is hard to match against other revolvers. That’s because the rounds are larger in caliber, thus requiring a bit more “oomph”. It will come in handy when you’re using it against small game targets like varmints or predators.

Conclusion

The best .357 revolver is out there. So it’s important to find one that will work to your advantage for whatever application you intend to use it for. Whether you’re looking for something that is concealable to take to the range or at a good enough size to keep it at home for self-defense purposes, you’ll want a quality .357 revolver that will be accurate, dependable, and reliable in any given application. Most importantly, you'll want something that will last you a long time. Be sure to choose wisely, since the revolver you choose may have the potential to stay with you for years to come. 

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