Heckler & Koch (HK) is among the most well-respected brands for law enforcement and military units around the world. Their P30 pistol is no exception to the rule and has been used widely for both highly trained units and civilian personal defense as well.

HK released the first P30 back in 2006. Now, 16 years later, you can find several different variants. Some are double-action/single-action, while others like this specific Law Enforcement Modification (LEM) model, feature a double action only (DAO) trigger with no manual safety. The DAO trigger took some getting used to, but once I did it was smooth sailing. Let’s take a look at why this pistol is so popular.

Table of Contents

Comfortable First Impression
Features and Specs
Hitting the Range
Pros & Cons
Final Thoughts

 

COMFORTABLE FIRST IMPRESSION


The stock grip on the P30 is one of the most comfortable that I’ve held in quite a while. Finger grooves aren’t normally my preference, but these feel great. It features the ability to change out both the backstrap and the lateral grip plates, but I didn’t have to change either. The grip and frame give off a full-size feel, which I don’t mind at all.
 

Even with larger than average hands, I was able to comfortably seat all of my fingers on the grip. (Photo: Ryan Domke/Guns.com)


The P30 has a nice streamlined all-black tactical look, but I don’t believe it was intended to be a showstopper from an aesthetic perspective. Instead, being introduced as more of a police and security pistol, HK focused more on functionality and reliability, and it shows. 

FEATURES & SPECS


I briefly mentioned the grip earlier, but would like to elaborate on it. Many pistols that fall into this size category have interchangeable backstrap inserts to help fit each shooter’s hand, but not many have the ability to change the lateral grip plates too. The P30 comes with two additional backstraps and two additional sets of lateral plates, which give you plenty of configurations to find comfort. HK also extended the grip texturing completely around the grip for maximum control, which I appreciated. 
 

HK P30
I found the grip to be one of the most comfortable stock grips I’ve held in a while. (Photo: Ryan Domke/Guns.com)


The controls are very different from your standard Glock or S&W, but that’s not a bad thing in this scenario. The magazine release is a paddle-style and is located at the rear of the trigger guard. It’s completely ambidextrous and I found myself manipulating it easily from the start. The slide stop lever is also fully ambidextrous and extends back further than most, so if you have small hands, it should be a large benefit. 
 

HK P30
The front and rear slide serrations were aggressive enough to be helpful, without being irritating. (Photo: Ryan Domke/Guns.com)


I love front slide serrations to pair with the rear. I press check often, so the front serrations help a ton. Along with the serrations, you’ll also find an accessory rail. It’s your standard Picatinny style, so you shouldn’t have any issue mounting most popular lights or lasers. 

The P30 may be set up quite different than you’re used to, but you can tell there was a ton of thought put behind why it is. The control layout works very well, the gun is comfortable to grasp and it’s versatile.

Caliber: 9mm
Capacity: 15+1
Action: Double-Action Only (DAO)
Length: 7.12 inches
Barrel Length: 3.85 inches
Height: 5.43 inches
Width: 1.37 inches
Weight: 26.08 ounces

 

HITTING THE RANGE

 

HK P30 Magazine with Ammo
The 15-round mags offer a solid balance of capacity and size. (Photo: Ryan Domke/Guns.com)


With the trend of flat-face triggers on the rise, I had my hesitations with the P30 trigger that reminds me of an old school fishhook. After I spent some time with it though, I wound up growing fond of it. The trigger pull is long, but it’s smooth with a nice crisp break. The longer trigger pull slowed down my follow-up shots, but not enough to really complain, and with enough training could be overcome. Now the reset on the other hand, seemed to be faint and happen very late. The trigger overall though, was consistent and smooth through each shot. 
 

HK P30
While I prefer a flat-face trigger, the P30’s trigger shot surprisingly well. (Photo: Ryan Domke/Guns.com)


I wound up shooting this one more than most in only a few range trips, because of how uniquely it shot compared to many of my other polymer pistols. It cycled 115-grain Winchester White Box FMJ, 115-grain LAX Ammo FMJ and 124-grain Federal Punch JHP with ease. I quickly put 360 rounds through it, and close to the end had one failure to eject, the failure being with the LAX ammo. No other failures before or after that point though. I think it’s safe to say that the P30 is not a picky eater.
 

HK P30
The DAO trigger took a little bit of getting used to, but I was able to get 2.5-inch groupings within the first magazine or two. (Photo: Ryan Domke/Guns.com)


Outside of 7-10 yards, accuracy came for me later in the round count. The felt recoil was well managed, it was simply the trigger that took some getting used to. Probably around the 150-round mark is where I started to feel most comfortable and was able to extend the 3-inch groupings out to 15 yards. Aside from my shots being left of center, which is possibly shooter error, they were consistent, and I was happy with my accuracy with the P30.  

 

PROS & CONS

There aren’t a ton of cons to be found with the P30, but I have to mention the steep price tag as the main one. For the price, you could entertain some other popular comparable pistols and still have money left over for accessories and/or ammo. However, the price is not so far out there to not be considered. 

Pros:

  • Fantastic ergonomics
  • Ambidextrous controls
  • Large capacity
  • Flat shooter

Cons:

  • Pricey
  • Long trigger pull with faint reset
  • No optic cut version (that I’m aware of)

 

FINAL THOUGHTS

 

HK P30
The P30 comes with two 15-round magazines, but also accepts 17-round mags from the VP9. (Photo: Ryan Domke/Guns.com)


This was my first bout with the P30 and I enjoyed it. It wound up being one of the most comfortable guns I’ve shot in quite some time, even without changing the backstrap or lateral grip plates. I’d be really interested to see what 1,000+ rounds through this would look like from an accuracy standpoint, but I bet it would be good. I’d suggest going to test out a P30 for yourself.

revolver barrel loading graphic

Loading