The 5 Best AR-10 Rifles: Large Frame Range Reviews [2022]

Last Updated on August 9, 2022.

The AR-15 is an excellent rifle. However, if you want a beefier long-range round, you’ll have to step up to an AR-10.

Getting more precision from the AR platform

The main benefit of using an AR-10 over a bolt-action rifle or another alternative is that many AR-15 parts will also fit on an AR-10.

Feel free to get the best rifle. Then add the gizmos and gadgets that make it feel just like your favorite AR-15. Go ahead and save yourself some money and get parts that fit on both rifles.

Or make it something completely different.

Anyway, these are the best AR-10 rifles that have demonstrated the most impressive performance and longevity (with the fewest visits to the gunsmithing doctor), based on what I’ve seen on our gun rental range and in the gunsmithing shop.

Best Choice

Wilson Combat AR-10 Super Sniper

Specifications:

Cartridge:
308 Winchester

Capacity:
20+1-Round

Length:
33.5″-37.75″

Finish:
Black Matte

Pros:

  • Incredible build quality.
  • Excellent ergonomics.
  • Very smooth, clean trigger movement and break.

Comparison Table

Skip Straight to Product Reviews

1. Overall best rifle

2. Budget rifle

3. Value riffle

4.  Mil-spec rifle

5. Precision riffle

Table of Contents

What is the difference between an AR-10 and AR-15?

The AR-10 is also known as a “large frame AR.” The AR-10 has a wider, longer upper and lower receiver than an AR-10. The receiver size accommodates long-action rounds, primarily the .308 Winchester. Many AR-10 components — such as the magazine, bolt carrier group, and barrel — are larger than AR-15 components.

However, there are many components that are the same on both rifles and are interchangeable between an AR-15 and AR-10:

However, there are many components that are the same on both rifles and are interchangeable between an AR-15 and AR-10.

Mil-spec parts will generally fit both AR-15 and AR-10 rifles, so long as both rifles have mil-spec receivers.

However, some aftermarket parts are exclusive to one AR platform or the other. Also, it’s unwise to use AR-15 springs on AR-10 rifles, even though they will physically fit.

AR-10 springs often have more spring power than AR-15 springs. It can cause reliability issues if you use weak springs on your rifle.

What does the 10 in “AR-10” mean?

AR-10 stands for “Armalite Rifle 10.” The 10 in “AR-10” is likely a patent abbreviation or model number. The AR-10 was one of the earliest designs produced by Eugene Stoner that would eventually be refined into the AR-15. The AR-10 is one of the most popular long-action semi-automatic rifles.

Best AR-10 rifle reviews: What is the best brand AR-10?

Wilson Combat, Rock River Arms, LWRC, Aero Precision, and Smith and Wesson all make excellent AR-10 rifles. AR-10 rifles made by Palmetto State Armory, Ruger, and Savage are also excellent economical options. All of these brands use similar materials and manufacturing processes.

However, complete AR-10 rifles are harder to find than pre-built AR-15 rifles. That’s why many people build their own AR-10s.

If this sounds like the right path for you, make sure you start with a strong AR-10 barrel.

Enhanced range and precision is the big benefit of an AR-10. The right AR-10 barrel helps you play to the strengths of the larger round.

If building isn’t quite your thing, these are the best complete AR-10 rifles I’ve seen in my gun rental and gunsmithing travels.

Overall best rifle

1. Wilson Combat AR-10 Ranger

The Wilson Combat AR-10 Super Sniper is a solid AR-10 rifle that puts the emphasis in the places that matter.

Key Specs:

  • Cartridge:

308 Winchester

  • Fabric/Material:

Polymer

  • Weight:

8 lbs

Pros:

  • Incredible build quality.
  • Excellent ergonomics.
  • Very smooth, clean trigger movement and break.

Cons:

  • Trigger pull weight might be a bit heavier than some precision shooters like.
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The quality of Wilson Combat products is clearly evident in this rifle.

The fit and finish are outstanding. The anodized finish is reinforced with the proprietary Armor Tuff finish, which gives a smoother feel and extra durability.

Then, most of the ergonomics are well-designed for precision shooting. The grip is the BCM Starburst Gunfighter Grip, which offers an upright grip angle that’s excellent for a more relaxed, precision shooting grip.

Additionally, the Tactical Trigger Unit (TTU) is excellent. The movement is minimal and the break is quite crisp.

However, the trigger is set at a 4 pound pull weight. Some precision shooters may find that to be a bit heavier than they’d like.

Also, the Wilson Combat stock is basically just a standard adjustable stock.

There’s no adjustable comb height. It’s also prone to causing the same fatigue as any other carbine stock during long shooting sessions.

The fluted barrel is outstanding, though. This rifle is more than capable of delivering high level precision at long range with just about any .308 Winchester ammunition.

Budget rifle

2. PSA Gen3 PA10

This is an exceptionally affordable rifle that delivers impressive quality for the money.

Key Specs:

  • Magazine:

20 Round PMAG

  • Fabric/Material:

416R Stainless Steel

  • Barrel Length:

18”

Pros:

  • Comes with an incredible trigger.
  • Durable, long-lasting barrel steel.
  • Includes decent pistol grip and stock.

Cons:

  • Pistol grip isn’t all that great.
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Other Options

The PSA Gen 3 PA10 is one of the most affordable AR-10 rifles out there. It’s an excellent option for those who need something a little more budget friendly.

PSA invested in the parts that matter: the trigger and the barrel.

The trigger is a Geissele Super Semi-Automatic Enhanced (SSA-E) 2-stage trigger.

It’s one of the most revered triggers on the market. It breaks at 3.5 pounds, which is an excellent all-purpose pull weight for an AR-10. Though, pure precision shooters may prefer something a touch lighter.

The barrel is forged from 4150 chromoly vanadium steel.

It’s the same steel that most mil-spec barrels are forged from. It’s good enough to produce consistent 1 inch groups out of the box, which is respectable for a budget rifle.

However, this rifle shows its price in the ergonomics.

The pistol grip is essentially a standard A2 pistol grip. The Magpul STR stock is good, but not great. It offers a good cheek weld and storage space, but lacks the adjustability of a dedicated precision rifle stock.

The furniture is easily replaced, though. This rifle is affordable enough that you’ll have some money left in your budget for a few upgrades.

Value riffle

3. Savage MSR 10

This an excellent rifle for anyone who wants long-range precision and strong ergonomics, without adding any upgrades.

Key Specs:

  • Magazine:

10 Round PMAG

  • Caliber:

.308 WIN

  • Barrel Length:

20”

Pros:

  • Fluted carbon steel barrel is excellent for long-range precision.
  • Top-notch stock and pistol grip.
  • Smooth two-stage trigger.

Cons:

  • A bit expensive.
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Other Options

Savage has been making pretty impressive bolt-action rifles for decades now. It’s nice to see them put their manufacturing knowledge to work making semi-automatic rifles.

The Savage MSR 10 uses some of the same technology from Savage bolt-action rifles — 5R rifling and a fluted carbon steel barrel — to deliver the best possible precision from a semi-automatic rifle.

Additionally, the ergonomics and controls are top notch.

The buttstock is completely adjustable. The pistol grip is well-shaped for a precision shooting grip. Lastly, the two-stage trigger is impressively smooth and crisp.This isn’t exactly a budget rifle. It’s a solid AR-10 that you probably won’t need to upgrade. For most shooters, this rifle will do everything you need and more right out of the box.

Mil-spec rifle

4. Smith & Wesson M&P10

The Smith & Wesson M&P10 seems designed as an upgradeable AR-10 platform. The base components are solid, but some parts are a bit mediocre.

Key Specs:

  • Cartridge:

308 Winchester

  • Material:

Polymer

  • Weight:

7.71 lbs

Pros:

    Impressive barrel quality for such an affordable rifle Decent muzzle device that works as both a flash hider and compensator Excellent internal component quality

Cons:

  • Mil-spec trigger is pretty mediocre.
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To start, the barrel is the star of the show.

It’s cut with 5R rifling and a 1 in 10 twist rate. The rifling minimizes bullet deformation and produces excellent precision with any .308 ammunition.

Also, the barrel is fitted with a substantial flash hider that also offers some compensation to keep your muzzle flat.

It’s clear that most of the price is in the barrel. It would be nice if the handguard was free floated, though.

Additionally, the internals and receiver set are well-built. There’s almost no slop between the receivers, and the bolt carrier group has a nice clean finish.

However, everything else on this rifle seems designed to be upgraded.

The trigger is basically a standard mil-spec trigger. The furniture is just mil-spec hardware.

Shooting this rifle feels a lot like shooting a standard M16, but with a bit more recoil.

If you approach this rifle with the intent of upgrading it (who doesn’t?), it gives you a great base platform to work from.

Precision riffle

5. Rock River Arms LAR-8 X-1

A solid rifle that delivers more than enough performance for most shooters, right out of the box.

Key Specs:

  • Caliber:

308 Winchester/7.62mm NATO

  • Finish:

Black

  • Capacity:

20 Rounds

Pros:

  • Excellent barrel with fluted for better cooling, without sacrificing precision.
  • Two-stage trigger is great for all types of shooting, especially long-range precision.
  • Strong ergonomics.

Cons:

  • Hogue grip has deep finger grooves that may not fit your hand.
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Other Options

There was a time when Rock River Arms was kind of a budget manufacturer. Nowadays, they’re more of a high-end manufacturer.

On one hand, RRA guns and components are more expensive than they used to be. On the other hand, their newer rifles, such as the Rock River Arms LAR-8 X-1, are great guns.

Personally, I like just about everything on this rifle…

The fluted stainless steel barrel delivers solid precision. The RRA two-stage trigger is one of the better stock triggers out there.

Even the buttstock is similar to the B5 Systems Bravo Stock, which is one of the best stocks ever.

My only real complaint is the Hogue Rubber Grip. Some people like these grips.

For me, the finger grooves are far too aggressive. Also, rubber texturing has never been something I really like on a pistol grip.

Your mileage may vary. This is still an outstanding rifle, regardless of the pistol grip, and you can easily swap out the pistol grip, anyway.

The Final Shot

Wilson Combat AR-10 Ranger

Key Specs:

  • Cartridge:

308 Winchester

  • Fabric/Material:

Polymer

  • Weight:

8 lbs

Pros:

  • Incredible build quality.
  • Excellent ergonomics.
  • Very smooth, clean trigger movement and break.

Cons:

  • Trigger pull weight might be a bit heavier than some precision shooters like.
Check on Brownells
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Although bolt guns are still considered the gold standard for extreme long-range precision, modern gas operated rifles are incredibly precise. You can easily use an AR-10 for shooting really far.

Or you could use an AR-10 as a hunting rifle and take advantage of the customizability to maximize your shooting skills or make your rifle as comfortable as possible.

Alternatively, you could start with an AR-10 and build several long-action uppers that fire different calibers to get more versatility in your long-range game.

Regardless of why you use an AR-10, it’s the best way to shoot long-action rounds from a semi-automatic rifle.

If you get the Wilson Combat AR-10 Super Sniper or PSA Gen 3 PA10, you’ll get excellent large-caliber performance, and these two rifles provide solid options for any budget.