It's the best handgun I've ever owned or shot. I've put about 300 rounds through it now, indoors and outdoors, and it's exceeded my expectations in every way.
It's large but well-balanced, very accurate with its preferred ammunition, solidly built, with good sights and good grip ergonomics (despite the cheap rubber grips it comes with). Everything works with a smooth, authoritative 'click.' When you close the cylinder on 6 rounds, it feels like closing a bank vault.
I never cared much for Remington ammunition before, but that's what it seems to like best so far - in .357, the 125g Golden Sabers. In .38Spl, it likes the 148g wadcutters, which are very pleasant to shoot and more accurate than my .22LR bull barrel Buckmark. I've started casting my own wadcutters with Lyman molds and getting excellent results out of them, too.
I have a Taurus 66 to compare it to and it's not in the same league as the 686. Get the S&W. Worth every penny.
Very smooth transaction with Bud's, as well.
Rating: [5 of 5 Stars!]