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How to Choose the Right Suppressor: A Guide from Hudson Arms

Selecting the right suppressor for your firearm is a crucial decision for any gun owner. A well-chosen suppressor can enhance your shooting experience by reducing noise, recoil, and muzzle flash. At Hudson Arms, we understand the importance of making an informed choice, and we’re here to guide you through the process. Here are key factors to consider when choosing the right suppressor for your needs.

1. Understand Your Firearm and Shooting Goals

The first step in choosing the right suppressor is to understand your firearm and what you want to achieve. Consider the following:

  • Firearm Type: Different suppressors are designed for rifles, pistols, and shotguns. Ensure the suppressor is compatible with your specific firearm.

  • Caliber: The suppressor must be rated for the caliber of your firearm. Using a suppressor not rated for your caliber can result in damage to the suppressor and potentially your firearm.

  • Shooting Purpose: Are you using your firearm for hunting, target shooting, or home defense? Each activity might have different requirements for sound reduction, weight, and size.

2. Noise Reduction

The primary purpose of a suppressor is to reduce the noise produced by firing your gun. Suppressors vary in their effectiveness, measured in decibels (dB) reduction. Here’s what to consider:

  • Decibel Reduction: Look for suppressors that offer a significant reduction in noise. A good suppressor should reduce the noise by 20-35 dB.

  • Subsonic vs. Supersonic: Subsonic ammunition produces less noise and works well with suppressors designed for it. If you plan to use supersonic ammunition, ensure the suppressor can handle the higher velocities.

3. Material and Durability

Suppressors are made from various materials, each offering different levels of durability, weight, and performance:

  • Stainless Steel: Offers excellent durability and is resistant to heat, making it suitable for high-volume shooting.

  • Titanium: Lightweight and durable, but typically more expensive. Ideal for shooters who prioritize weight reduction without compromising strength.

  • Aluminum: Lightweight and cost-effective, but less durable than steel or titanium. Suitable for low to moderate use.

4. Weight and Size

The weight and size of a suppressor can impact the balance and handling of your firearm:

  • Weight: Heavier suppressors can affect the balance of your firearm, especially for pistols. Choose a weight that feels comfortable and does not overly affect the handling.

  • Length: Longer suppressors generally offer better noise reduction but can make your firearm more cumbersome. Consider the trade-off between noise reduction and maneuverability.

5. Mounting Options

Suppressors can be mounted in different ways, each offering unique benefits:

  • Direct Thread: Screws directly onto the barrel. Simple and secure, but may require re-tightening during extended shooting sessions.

  • Quick Detach (QD): Uses a specialized mount for easy attachment and removal. Offers convenience but can be more expensive and may require additional mounts for different firearms.

6. Legal Considerations

Suppressors are regulated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) and require a special application process:

  • NFA Regulations: Suppressors are classified under the National Firearms Act (NFA). You must submit an ATF Form 4, pay a $200 tax stamp, and undergo a background check.

  • Local Laws: Ensure that suppressor ownership and use are legal in your state and municipality.


Choosing the right suppressor involves understanding your firearm, shooting goals, and the various features of suppressors. At Hudson Arms in Emmett, Idaho, we’re here to help you navigate these choices and find the perfect suppressor for your needs. Visit our website at or stop by our shop for expert advice and a wide selection of suppressors. Trust Hudson Arms to enhance your shooting experience with the right suppressor.

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