The 6.8 SPC round was developed by Remington and some military marksmanship gurus. They wanted a round that would kill better than NATO standard 5.56x45mm rounds. The design was based on experiences in Iraq. They optimized their design for shorter urban ranges and shorter barrels. They did this without compromising much on bulkiness or recoil.
The round has been around a while. Whether the military adopts it or a competitor to replace the 5.56 is an open question. It is quick and easy to convert existing AR systems to 6.8 SPC. Most major manufacturers offer AR uppers and magazines in 6.8 SPC.
At a Glance: Our Top Picks for 6.8 SPC Magazines
Comparison of the Best 6.8 SPC Magazines
Our Top Pick
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Why You Can Never Have Too Many 6.8 SPC Magazines
Currently, the military is looking for a new weapon system. The new system must allow a highly mobile soldier to carry 2, 10-rounds in magazines with ease. That would be seven 30-round magazines. If I was deployed to Afghanistan, I’d try to go on patrol with a dozen or so more than that.
Besides preparing for the zombie apocalypse, there are many reasons a civilian should keep a stockpile of 6.8 SPC magazines. Varmint hunting can eat up rounds. This is especially true with varmints like prairie dogs. An extra mag or two could also go a long way on a hog hunt.
One group which loves to hoard rounds are preppers. If you’re expecting the worst, let out your inner boy scout and always be prepared. You’ll not only want to fulfill your practical needs for any anticipated use cases but also have plenty of backups. Planning for the long-term means being ready to replace anything lost, broken, or worn out.
The best reason to keep plenty of mags around is that it will make you a better shot. Imagine how much more you will enjoy a full day at the range when you never have to stop and reload your mags. That enjoyment and efficient use of range time will inspire you to go more often.
The more you shoot, the better you shoot. You can, and should, load and mark different mags with different types of ammo to see what works best for you. Each individual gun has its own barrel harmonics which will produce the greatest accuracy with a specific load. Finding the right one requires trial and error.
Features of Our Favorite Magazines
Let's take a look at some of the top features from the magazines on our list.
Mags should be durable and up to spec. These can both be indicated by the reputation of a make and model. The feed lips, spring, and follower should work together effectively. If you load a mag up, it should take some knocking around without any rounds popping free. Don’t go too crazy crash testing it, just knock it from various angles with your hand.
The mag should work seamlessly with the magazine release on your AR. Hold your AR level. Both full and empty mags should drop free when you hit the release. Don’t let the loaded mags drop onto a hard surface. If something goes wrong, an exploding shell won’t send the bullet far, but you could get hit with shrapnel from the brass case.
Your AR’s bolt should lock back on an empty mag. Drop the bolt on an empty chamber, then insert an empty mag. Pull the charging handle and ensure that the bolt catch smoothly engages.
You’ll have to choose between polymer and steel. It’s the classic trade-off between durability and weight. Some polymer mags come with steel feeder lips to prevent wear. Arguably, this increases complexity and the potential for breakage. All steel construction negates this problem.
Review of the Best 6.8 SPC Magazines
With these points in mind, here are our picks for the best 6.8 SPC magazines for your AR. We’ve gone all steel to not compromise on reliability. Steel also better accommodates longer hand-loaded rounds.
C-products - AR-15/M16 6.8 SPC Magazines
C-Products offers another bomb-proof design when it comes to their 6.8 SPC mags. These stainless-steel mags are Teflon-coated for protection, smooth operation, and glare elimination. CPD boasts of its adherence to ISO-9001-2008 standards, a hallmark of top-quality manufacturing.
These magazines accept cartridges with an extra overall length up to 2.295 inches. This is great for performance-enhancing hand loads. As per standard, they feature an anti-tilt follower and high-quality springs. Capacities available include 5, 10, 20, and 28-rounds.
Check your local regulations before purchasing high-capacity magazines. These mags would not make our top spot without being made in the USA with a lifetime warranty.
C-Products specializes in producing only magazines and they are very good at it. These top-quality mags offer great value. The Teflon-coated stainless steel will never rust.
These mags are perfect if you hand load your own rounds or just want a big stash of ready-to-go mags in your bug-out bag. If you want a large number of very reliable mags on a budget, you can’t go wrong with these.
Barrett Firearms Mfg Inc - Barrett AR-15 30rd Magazine 6.8 SPC
Barrett is famous for producing the first civilian .50 BMG rifle, which later became the military’s M107. Barrett’s REC7 AR upper in 6.8 SPC was reviewed by the military in 2008 while considering a replacement for the 5.56x45mm M4.
Barrett has a rock-solid reputation for quality and is a major force behind the 6.8’s popularity. Barrett is uncompromising on second amendment rights, which is probably why these mags only come in 30-round versions.
These improved, second-generation mags are supplied with the venerable REC7 AR rifle. The 30-round capacity matches the mil-spec requirements. Check your local regulations to ensure 30-round mags are legal in your area.
These are all-steel mags except for the polymer follower. They are Teflon-coated to resist scratching and smoothen seating in the magazine-well. Made in the USA with a lifetime warranty, the quality of these mags is unsurpassed. They may require a bit of breaking in, so don’t fret if they seat a bit stiffly the first trip or two to the range.
Barrett sets the bar for quality and innovation. If it is legal in your area to own 30-round mags, I’d stock up on as many as possible. Tape them together in pairs for quick reloading like the troops do on deployment.
This is a great company to support in order to help defend your Second Amendment rights. Besides, their mags are guaranteed to last you a lifetime.
3. Precision Reflex, Inc. - AR-15 Magazine 6.8/ 22 Nosler/ 224 Valkyrie
These magazines are made with extra-tough hardened steel. The nylon composite, anti-tilt follower from Magpul is stamped with “6.8” to avoid mixing the mag up with those for other calibers. These are available in 10, 15, or 25-round capacities. The feed lips and spring are tempered for reliability.
The mags have no sharp edges. The welding, rather than folded steel, leaves extra room for longer loads which use heavier grain bullets. If the mags fit a bit tightly in the mag-well at first, don’t worry, they will break in. The floorplate is designed for quick disassembly for cleaning. These magazines have recently been redesigned to reduce noise and follower drag.
In addition to 6.8, these PRI mags work with .224 Valkyrie and .22 Nosler, in case you have a gun or an upper for either of those rounds lying around. The 25-round mag is 7.2 inches long, the 15-round mag is 4.7 inches, and the 10-round is 3.7 inches. Subtract 1.9 from these figures to know how far each mag hangs out of the magazine-well at the rear.
Note that the 15 and 25-round magazines have a gentle curve like an AK mag, but less pronounced. This is necessary given the dimensions of the 6.8 shell.
The PRI mags are the most robust 6.8 mags on the market today. The design gives you that bit of extra space for extra-long loads. This made in the USA quality is backed up with a lifetime warranty for your peace of mind. This is a case of buy once, cry once, you will have no regrets.
4. E-lander Magazine 6.8 Spc 10 Round
If there is one country whose special forces you can trust to be supplied with the best, no-nonsense equipment, it is the special forces of Israel. These magazines have been made in the holy land and supplied to the Jewish state's elite units.
E-lander has been in operation for over sixty years. Their current factory is a state-of-the-art, environmentally-friendly facility. In use by the IDF, it goes without saying that these mags have been field-proven in some of the toughest real combat situations you could care to find.
E-lander's business is focused almost entirely on cutting-edge magazines. They have developed advanced anti-tilt self-leveling followers, which they use in all of their high-performance, steel-body magazines. The followers come in your choice of a variety of colors, including green, red, black, or white. They also use a unique salt-spray test, against which they claim their proprietary steel body coating can withstand 96 hours of constant spray. The floorplate is also a refined, reinforced design.
If you need a ten-round, 6.8 SPC mag that will stand up in the toughest conditions, this offering from E-lander is for you. The best features of this mag are the cutting-edge follower and tough steel construction. Ten rounds is a great mag capacity for almost every practical civilian use, at least until SHTF.
5. Pro Mag 6.8 SPC Rifle Magazine
ProMag is a top-quality firearm components maker based out of Phoenix. This is another fantastic ten-round mag with a traditional military aesthetic and a heat-treated steel body. Again, the ten-round capacity of this magazine gives you a perfect balance between lightness and firepower.
This model has very similar aesthetics and functionality to the standard ten-round Ruger factory model but at around half the price. Inside, this mag has a chrome-silicon spring to prevent corrosion and a precision-molded polymer feeder.
ProMag products are made in the U.S.A. and are covered by a warranty against factory defects. This is the perfect mag for you if you are looking for a moderate capacity with a traditional military aesthetic at an affordable price. If you have a Ruger Ranch rifle in 6.8 SPC, you simply can't go wrong with this magazine.
This is an excellent, low-cost option, especially if you're the kind of shooter who treats magazines as disposable items. The aesthetics are nice, especially if like the old-school army look. You might like to find a way to polish the follower to increase reliability, but this should be an easy job. It can be convenient to have a few affordable mags or other components that you don't care too much for in case they get lost or damaged. If that's what you need, this is the mag for you.
6. ASC 6.8 SPC & .224 Valkyrie Stainless Steel 10 Round Magazine 10rd Mag 6.8mm
The ASC mags offer one thing that the other options on this list don’t. That is a choice of color. They come in black, dark earth or, as a gift option for that very special IRA member in your life, ‘St. Patty’s green’.
The floorplate is always powder-coated black. Otherwise, the specs on these 10-round mags are very much in line with our other choices. Mossberg ships these mags with their MVP rifle.
After a chemical treatment for corrosion resistance, the stainless-steel body is coated in ASC’s proprietary finish, Marlube. The internal length of 2.31 inches is great for accommodating hand loads. They include a chrome silicon spring and polymer anti-tilt follower. They are also made in the USA.
If you live in a jurisdiction where 10-rounds are all that is permitted, this mag is hard to beat. Every design feature is chosen to ensure durability and smooth operation.
Reloaders will appreciate the extra internal length. If need be, you can also use these with .224 Valkyrie. These magazines are built with uncompromising quality.
7. Franklin Armory DFM 10-round Magazine
Franklin Armory is a manufacturer out of Nevada that produces a variety of firearms components but focuses on producing guns and components for anti-2nd Amendment states such as California, Connecticut, and New York State.
This magazine is a good example of their work. It has limiting tabs on top that prevent it from coming out of the mag well unless the upper receiver of your modern sporting rifle, or AR, is tilted up or disassembled. You will also have to remove and reinstall your bolt catch. This procedure makes your rifle legally a fixed mag design. If you reside in California or Connecticut, you will also require a modified bolt catch, which is available separately from Franklin Armory.
Installation requires no modifications whatsoever to your rifle. This magazine is intended to be used with a bolt catch in order to operate correctly and prevent it from scratching your lower receiver. This tough steel mag has a USGI-reminiscent aesthetic and a polymer anti-tilt follower.
If you reside in an anti-2nd Amendment state like New York, Connecticut, or California, you need innovative ways to exercise your Second Amendment rights as much as possible. With this magazine, Franklin Arms allows you to do that. The best features are the ease of installation, the lack of permanent alterations required, and the ability to easily switch back to detachable mags if something changes. The tough steel body is also nice.
6. PSA D&H 6.8 25rd Magazine Gen 2
Palmetto State Armory is one of the nation's largest online retailers of firearms and firearm components. As such, they have a wealth of consumer data on exactly what shooters want from their mags and other components. Based on that research, they have produced this affordable steel USGI-style 25-round magazine for your 6.8 SPC chambered modern sporting rifle.
This Gen-2 mag has been redesigned to function flawlessly. Besides the steel body, it has an anti-tilt follower from Magpul, one of the most reliable names in modern sporting rifle accessories. The steel floorplate is stamped with Palmetto State Armory's company name.
Twenty-five rounds is a great capacity if you want a lot of firepower, but want a mag that is a little less obtrusive than a 30-round unit for shooting prone, for example. Components for modern sporting rifles in an unusual caliber can be very expensive, but this magazine is a great, affordable high-capacity option.
Palmetto State Armory really knows what it's doing, and user satisfaction with this Generation Two 6.8 SPC magazine has been high. The top features are the tough steel construction, the Magpul follower, and the astute choice of capacity. The affordability of this magazine makes it a great choice no matter what your budget is. Note that it also works with the .224 Valkyrie.
Magazines are like guns themselves, in that you can always use one more. Whether you’re a varmint hunter, a prepper, or just a range rat, the more quality mags you have the more fun and peace of mind you will enjoy.
As gift options, they are a safe bet, sure to put more of a smile on dad’s face than that tie or pair of socks. Each of the quality, all-steel options on our list will last a lifetime.