Best AR-15 Magazine Releases of 2020 – Complete Buyer’s Guide Review

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If you’re looking for the best AR-15 magazine release, then you’re in the right place. You’ll want something that will allow you to quickly and easily release your magazines in situations where they’re either empty or if you need to dismount it because of jamming. Either way, a good magazine release will serve you well in the long run.

To get you started, we have taken the liberty of putting together a list of the best AR-15 magazine releases on the market. One of the six listed below can be yours if you believe they match your personal needs and preferences.

Before we get to the list, let’s talk about what advantages you might enjoy should you purchase an AR-15 magazine release and how you can choose one for your own. If you’re a first-time buyer or have bought poor quality magazine releases in the past, you’ll want to pay attention to this.

Comparison of the Best AR-15 Magazine Releases

PRODUCTDETAILS
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Magpul Enhanced AR Magazine Release

  • Best Overall Option
  • Made From High-Quality Aluminum
  • Designed to Work With 5.56 and 7.72 Receivers
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Armaspec B1 Extended Mag Release

  • Fits Almost Any AR-15 Receiver
  • Longer Than Most Factory Mag Releases
  • Made From High-Quality Materials for Durability
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Brownells - AR-15 Magazine Release Assembly

  • Fits Most AR-15 Receivers
  • Best Value for the Money Option
  • Made From High-Quality Materials for Superior Durability
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Troy Ambidextrous Magazine Release

  • Best Ambidextrous Option
  • Best Used for Left-Handed Shooters
  • Made From Billeted Steel for Durability
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Odin Works Inc. - AR-15 Extended Magazine Releases

  • Comes in Three Different Finishes
  • Crafted From High-Quality 6061 Aluminum
  • Interchangeable With AR-15 and AR-10 Rifles
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The Perks of Investing in a Quality Magazine Release

Whether you’re upgrading to a better model or looking to add something to an AR-15 you’re trying to build from the ground up, there’s a good chance you might benefit from a magazine release. Upgrading will give you better advantages that you won’t find in low quality and ineffective products. Here are some of the perks that you may enjoy should you find a great magazine release:

Quicker Release

Whether you have an empty magazine or one that is jammed and cannot work, you’ll have the ability to quickly release it and have it fall freely to the ground, regardless of the conditions you’re in. You’ll want something that will be able to release with one touch of the button, allowing you to discard the old magazine so you can load your AR-15 with a fresh, new one.

Works With Any Size Hands

Depending on the size of the magazine release you use, the reach will be considerably improved regardless of your hand size. Some factory or stock magazine releases won’t fit all hand sizes. And the reach may not be the best fit for everyone. Some come in different sizes and designs, so they may be better compared to the factory magazine releases.

How We Chose These AR-15 Magazines

There are a few aspects we’ve based our six choices on. We highly recommend you consider them for yourself as you’re looking for an AR-15 magazine release. We want you to get the best magazine release in terms of quality and performance at a price you can afford, regardless of whether you’re on a budget or have money to play around with. Here are the factors that you should consider:

Material

One of the most important things to consider while looking for a great magazine release is the overall quality. The material used will depend on the overall quality. For example, some metal magazine releases are made of steel or high-quality aluminum. These are proven to be more durable than any other metal-like material in existence.

Magpul Enhanced AR Magazine Release is machined from mil-spec anodized aluminum.

Price

If you’re a budget shopper, the odds of you choosing a great magazine release based on price is quite high. However, you’ll need to pay more attention to the secondary factors and not consider the price tag to be the “end all” reason you buy a certain product. Always find the best quality you can afford based on your budget. This way, you’ll avoid buying something considered really cheap and crappy in quality.

Installation

If you’re a gun owner with no gunsmithing skills at all, you’re not alone. In fact, we expect a lot of gun owners do not have any of those skills at all. So we’ve made sure to choose the types that are considered “drop-ins”. In plain English, this means they are easy to install. Installation will take minutes of your time and will require the right set of tools for a quick and painless setup.

Quick Take - The Best AR-15 Magazine Releases

Review of the Best AR-15 Magazine Releases

The following is a list of the six best AR-15 magazine releases currently on the market. It is important to read through each of these carefully. That’s because you might come across a feature or quality that might pique your interests and prompt you to look at the magazine release even further. Whether you’re building an AR-15 or looking for an upgrade, one of these will serve you well in the long run. Now, let’s take a look at our “best overall” choice:

Pros

  • Fits Most AR-15 Rifles
  • Super Durable in Quality
  • Mag Drops are Faster and Easier

Cons

  • Some Filing May Be Needed Prior to Fitting
  • One Reviewer Said that the Magazine Release Bolt Screws Halfway Instead of Full Flush

First on the agenda, we’ll be taking a look at the Magpul Enhanced AR Magazine Release. Right away, you’ll notice this is made from high-quality aluminum. The two-piece construction is designed to keep a low profile and won’t cause any obstruction or distraction.

It is easy to install and ready to go in a matter of minutes. Once installed, you’ll be able to put this to good use and enjoy a much faster release and reload for any AR-15 magazine you may have. This magazine release is compatible with magazines that hold 5.56 NATO and 7.72 receivers.

If you’re looking for an excellent magazine release that is easy to use and install, this product from Magpul might be the best possible option, especially if you’re looking for something that is considered the best of the best.

This is a lightweight and durable unit that won’t add on any unnecessary weight on your rifle. Plus, it can withstand all kinds of damage. No wonder why we consider it the “best overall” on our list.

Bottom Line

If you’re looking for a product that will give you a quick release time, you’re probably going to want to look at the Magpul Enhanced AR Mag Release a little further. This will come in handy in the situations that warrant a quick release like a jammed round or if you want to quickly reload your AR-15 in the heat of intense competition. This magazine release is as reliable and dependable as it gets.

Pros

  • Easy to Install
  • Superior Durability
  • Magazines Drop Quickly and Easily

Cons

  • One Reviewer Says You Might Need to Try and Press the Release a Bit Farther in Order for the Magazine to Freely Drop.

Next, we’ll be taking a look at the Armaspec B1 Extended Mag Release. One thing to get out of the way here, this is an extended mag release. This may not be a product that supports extended magazines for an AR-15.

To give you a better understanding, the Armaspec Extended Mag Release has an extended length, so it’s longer than your standard factory mag release button. This fits almost all kinds of receivers like the 5.56 NATO, .223 caliber, and the .308 caliber, to name a few. You can easily release the magazine without ever having to worry about changing the grip position.

This is made from high-quality materials, making it a very durable unit. Aside from its durability, it’s proven to be quite reliable in situations where you need a good magazine release most. If you’re looking for something that’s a little longer in length than regular mag releases, the Armaspec might be exactly what you’re looking for.

Bottom Line

The Armaspec Extended Mag Release is an excellent alternative to the Magpul. This is something you’ll want if the Magpul is not able to accommodate the receiver of your choice (i.e.--.223 caliber). On top of that, it’s a little longer than almost any other product in existence.

The length is quite convenient and is a big help for someone looking for a better reach for their hands. If that’s something that’s high on your list of priorities, you’ll want to consider the Armaspec as your best option.

Pros

  • Quick Release Every Time
  • Takes Less Than a Minute to Install
  • Reach is Incredible Compared to Factory-Style Mag Releases

Cons

  • One Reviewer Pointed Out That a Spring Should Be Included in Order to Improve the Mag Release a Bit

Now, we’ll be taking a look at the magazine release considered the best for the money. If you’re a budget shopper looking for a high-quality magazine release, you’ll want to consider looking a bit closer at the Brownells AR-15 assembly.

This is made from high-quality materials with a black oxide coating for extra durability. This will work when you really need it. Need to quickly reload with a full mag? You can do that. Dealing with jamming issues? No problem. Just quickly release the magazine and you’re good to go. Just let the magazine fall freely.

This will fit almost any kind of receiver equipped with your AR-15 rifle. If you’re firing 5.56 NATO rounds or .223 rounds, this magazine release will get the job done. This is a highly durable, reliable magazine release you can depend on. Best of all, it is at a price you can afford. If you’re on a budget and want a mag release that is a “more than you pay for” kind of thing, the Brownells’ brand AR-15 magazine release assembly could be yours.

Bottom Line

Whether you’re on a budget or you have a good amount of money to work with, a great budget magazine release might be just what you’re looking for. Whether it’s a 5.56 or a .223, you want a product that can handle these types of rounds. And if things end up malfunctioning, you can always quickly release the mag and replace it with one that’s fully loaded and ready to go.

If you’re looking for an excellent mag release without breaking the bank, the Brownells brand might be something to look closely at.

Best Ambidextrous Magazine Release:
Troy Ambidextrous Magazine Release

Pros

  • Easy to Install.
  • Easily and Quickly Releases Magazines
  • Allows Better Reach forLeft-Handed Shooters

Cons

  • None

If you’re a left-handed shooter, here’s some good news for you. We’ve included an ambidextrous magazine release on our review list. For our best choice in ambidextrous magazine releases, we went with the Troy brand.

This is made from high-quality steel and has a matte black finish, making it sharp and sleek for an AR-15 rifle. This replicates the feel and function of a factory replacement. At the same time, it’s designed to best accommodate left-handed shooters.

If you’re also trying to quickly change magazines with one hand, this ambidextrous magazine release comes in handy. That alone is not only an impressive feat, it’s also a great way to save you time when in a situation where quick release and reload is a must.  

This is a drop-in style you can install in a matter of minutes. Once installed, you’ll be ready to give this a spin at the range with a few test magazines in tow. Even if you’re not a left-handed shooter, you still get the same reliability as you would from any other magazine release. But it’s always a plus if you’re left-handed. The reach will be better for you and you don’t have to put yourself in harm’s way to use it.

Bottom Line

If you’re a left-handed shooter, you’ve probably found your magazine release in the Troy Ambidextrous Magazine Release. No longer will you have to deal with the frustration of figuring out how to use the magazine release just because you’re left-handed.

You’ll have the best reach and the ability to work as if it were a regular factory-style mag release. Whether you’re quickly dropping a mag to load a new one or dealing with reliability issues with a magazine, you’ll need a product that will have you covered.

Pros

  • Simple to Install. Takes a Matter of Minutes
  • Helps With Shooters That Have Smaller Hands
  • The Release of the Magazine is Greatly Improved

Cons

  • None

For our next magazine release, we’ll be taking a look at the AR-15 Extended Magazine Release from the Odin Works brand. This comes in three different colored finishes: black, red, and flat dark earth. Obviously, the color will be based on your personal preference.

This mag release not only works with AR-15 rifles but will also work with AR-10 rifles as well. So if you’re looking for something that’s interchangeable between two different rifles, you’ll love this magazine release. This is made from high-quality 6061 aluminum, which means it is quite durable and will definitely take a hard surface hit when the magazine hits the ground.

This is simple to install and will take minutes with the right set of tools. If you’re looking for a magazine that will get the job done in the quickest amount of time, the Odin Works might just be worth the investment on your end.

Bottom Line

If you’re looking for an excellent magazine release that will be easy to change between an AR-15 and an AR-10, the Odin Works magazine release might be what you’re looking for. What’s also impressive is that it will improve the reach of any shooter regardless of their hand size.

This magazine release also doesn’t take up too much space on your rifle. But it will be easy to use, no matter what kind of application you use your AR-15 rifle for.

Pros

  • Excellent for Left-Handed Shooters
  • Fits Perfectly With Most AR-15 Rifles
  • A Great Addition for a Left-Handed AR-15 Build

Cons

  • Some Fitting May Be Required
  • Might Be a Little Stiff Upon Initial Use

Next, we’ll be taking a look at the Arms Unlimited Inc. AR-15 Ambidextrous Magazine Release. If you weren’t impressed with the Troy brand version, then we’ll give you an alternative.

This will fit most AR-15 rifles, but also M4 and M16 rifles, to name a few. This is made of high-quality steel. Not only is this durable, but it will also be reliable when equipment malfunctions happen.

Since this is an ambidextrous magazine release, it will benefit a left-handed shooter (and you might be one of them). This is an easy to install magazine release you can add on in a matter of minutes. No fancy tools or gunsmithing skills needed.

This is guaranteed not to snag and will prevent your magazines from accidentally dropping. If you’ve dealt with accidental drops in the past, this might be the product you’re looking for so you can prevent that from ever happening again.

Botton Line

What really impressed us most with this is that it can still work when equipment failure occurs. So if your mags are jamming up or if the rifle itself isn’t firing, you can simply release the magazine. It will freely fall and be put to good use in another rifle.

Other than that, this is another ambidextrous mag release that can especially benefit left-handed shooters. It might come in handy as an addition to your building project (assuming you’re building a left-handed AR-15 rifle).

How to Install a Magazine Release

If you don’t know how to install a magazine release, you have nothing to worry about. That’s because we’ve included this easy to follow guide on the process. Here’s what you’ll need to do:

  • As always, you need to make sure your rifle is completely clear. No magazine in the well, no rounds in the chamber. Once you’re clear, move on to the next step.
  • Cover the lower receiver with some masking tape to protect it. It also provides protection from any kind of slippage.
  • Place the action block in the vise and slip the lower receiver onto it.
  • Lubricate the spring and place it on the right side of the receiver.
  • Lubricate the threads of the release button. Then, install with the serrated side facing outward. Insert the release button on top of the spring.
  • Get a dowel rod. Insert it so you can hold the button below the outside surface of the receiver. Place the release part in the receiver and screw it in.
  • Once installed, push the magazine release so you can remove it from the action block.
  • Test the release by slipping in an empty magazine. If successful, remove the masking tape and you’re done. If not, review the above steps and make sure each piece is properly seated.

If you are still a bit confused, use the video below to help you better understand the process..

Conclusion

The best AR-15 magazine release is out there. Whether you’re a right-handed shooter or a lefty, there’s definitely one with your name on it. Be sure to find out which one will best fit your personal needs and preferences and determine whether or not it will be a good long-term investment on your end. If you want reliability and the ability to release and reload your AR-15, a great magazine release is exactly what you’ll need. 

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