I actually ordered a pair of these, one for me and the other for my son, so we could go out plinking together without it costing a fortune in ammunition. We haven't shot his yet, the 4.5" version, but I spent a few hours today at the range with mine and was absolutely thrilled with nearly everything about this handgun.
I really like the magazines. They are so easy to load. The simple addition of the thumb slide the relieve the spring tension makes popping ten rounds into the magazine almost effortless. You can't just 'slap' the magazine in like I do on my Glock, which presented a minor feeding problem the very first time I tried to shoot it, but once you realize you have to make a little extra effort to seat the magazine it is reliable from there on out.
I am typically the type that will use my thumb to release the slide when it is locked back, feeding the first round in the new magazine and then get back to shooting. For whatever reason that didn't seem to work too well on this handgun. If I would just pull the slide back and release it everything worked well. Being under no illusion this weapon was going to make or break me in a life or death struggle I didn't view this as a significant issue.
I had taken a couple of rifles, my trusty Glock, and this Neos to the range, thinking I would shoot everything by the time I left, but I found I was having so much fun with the Neos that when I looked at the time and realized how long I had been there I ultimately went home having not really spending any time with the other firearms I had intended to also shoot. I went through a box of 500 rounds of just standard 22LR, and no sore fingers from jamming rounds into the little magazine. It was just a pleasant experience all around.
I did most of the shooting in a part of our gun range that is set up for the cowboy action shooting. Lots of sillouette targets at various ranges and elevations, as well as a 50 yd bell tower dinger, and some 100 yd sillouettes way up on the mountain. There wasn't anything I couldn't consistently hit with this thing, and that was just with the open sights.
One interesting thing is how well it ejects spent cartridges. They don't just come out. They fly WAY out and off to the right. You don't end up with a pile of brass anywhere near you. The brass has some serious energy behind them when they are ejected, and they fly a ways away from the shooter. I liked that, but if you had someone standing to the right they might not appreciate the brass shower.
I have friends who swear by their Ruger Mark handguns, and I have shot them and they are very nice. But, this little number from Beretta is much cheaper and just for plinking around I can't imagine why anyone who want to spend the extra money for the Ruger.
Rating: [5 of 5 Stars!]