Best AR-15 Muzzle Device

Best-Rated AR-15 Muzzle Devices

Updated January 14, 2022

Since its design in 1957, the AR-15 has become one of the most popular firearms platforms in the world. As such, there is a wide variety of aftermarket parts available, such as foregrips, stocks, trigger groups, bolt carrier assemblies and muzzle devices.

Three muzzle device types are brakes, flash suppressors and compensators, and each have their own benefits.

Table of Contents

What Is A Muzzle Brake?

A muzzle brake is designed to redirect or deflect the high-pressure and high-velocity gases of the gun either to the side or the rear. This lessens the effects of recoil on the body and the shoulder in particular, allowing you to keep better control of your weapon.

Since the effects of recoil are reduced, the shooter is better able to acquire and reacquire targets after firing the weapon.

While muzzle brakes are suitable for use on smaller weapons like the AR-15, they are also often found fitted on large-caliber rifles like the Barrett M82.

What Is A Flash Suppressor?

A flash suppressor, or flash hider, uses the rifle’s vented gases to reduce or eliminate muzzle flash. This helps keep the shooter’s position concealed when on nighttime combat operations and also helps to reduce or eliminate night blindness.

What Is A Compensator?

A compensator is designed specifically to direct the gases from the muzzle upward, thereby reducing muzzle climb. Reduced muzzle climb means successive shots are easier and overall control of the gun is increased, making for tighter groupings during rapid fire. 

Reasons To Upgrade Your Muzzle Device

There are several different reasons to upgrade the muzzle device that comes stock with your rifle:

  • Caliber: While the AR-15 was initially developed with the 5.56 x 45 mm cartridge in mind, some shooters choose to use larger cartridges, such as .300 Blackout or .308 Winchester. Using a muzzle brake or compensator with these larger cartridges can help bring recoil down to a manageable level.
  • Recoil Management: While the kick of the 5.56 x 45 mm is nothing to write home about, it can still be daunting for a novice shooter, and a compensator can help bring recoil levels down to something the shooter feels comfortable with.
  • Muzzle Blast: The 5.56 x 45 mm cartridge gives off a good-sized muzzle blast when fired. Not only can this make follow-up shots difficult by obscuring the target, but it can also be distracting for other shooters. Flash hiders can help reduce or eliminate muzzle blast by efficiently mixing the leftover powder and the surrounding air.

2022 Best AR-15 Muzzle Devices

Top-Rated AR-15 Muzzle Devices

Type

Price

Precision Armament Hypertap Muzzle Brake

Muzzle Brake

$170.99

LANTAC Dragon Advance

Muzzle Brake

$128.99

Fortis Muzzle Brake

Muzzle Brake

$90.20

Ultradyne Apollo Max Muzzle Brake

Muzzle Brake

$107.95

VG6 Precision GAMMA Muzzle Device

Muzzle Brake

$72.24

Next Level Armament NLX-5 Hi-Helix Flash Suppressor

Flash Suppressor

$60.00

Primary Weapons Systems CQB 556

Flash Suppressor

$110.46

Precision Armament EFAB Hybride Muzzle Device

Flash Suppressor

$151.95

Forward Controls Design 63 Style AR-15 Flash Hider For Dead Air KeyMo     

Flash Suppressor     

$95.00

Smith Enterprise Vortex 5.56 Flash Eliminator

Flash Suppressor

$57.95

2A Armament T3 Compensator

Compensator

$59.79

V Seven HELIOS Linear Compensator

Compensator

$142.59

Kaw Valley Precision Linear Comp

Compensator

$39.95

SLR Rifleworks Synergy Mini Comp

Compensator

$90.24

Odin Work ATLAS 5

Compensator

$94.05

2022 Product Review: Best AR-15 Muzzle Brakes

If you’re looking for a muzzle brake, you want to make sure your investment is worth it. The following are a few of the best-rated muzzle brakes on the market:

Precision Armament Hypertap Muzzle Brake
  • Price:

    $170.99

Built out of 416 stainless steel and finished with either a bead-blasted stainless steel or a coating of black Ionbond, the Precision Armament Hypertap Muzzle Brake is designed to put an end to harsh recoil and irksome muzzle climb. During the factory performance test, the Hypertap Muzzle Brake was able to reduce recoil by a surprising 84%.

The large gas ports on the sides and top of the muzzle brake help mitigate recoil and ensures a smooth-firing AR-15. The included timing nut provides a smooth fit so the Hypertap Muzzle Brake won't come loose, even under sustained rapid fire. The Hypertap Muzzle Brake also comes with two spanner wrenches, which can be conveniently carried in the field for quick removal or adjustment.

This muzzle brake is fully user tunable. Six piloted drill-out ports on top of the muzzle brake allow users to customize how much upward gas is needed to maintain the perfect sight picture.

While the Hypertap Muzzle Brake is built primarily for law enforcement officers and three-gun competition shooters, it’s a solid choice for anyone who needs to bring the recoil on their rifle down to manageable levels. Customers all praise the Hypertap not only for its recoil and muzzle climb reduction but also for its ease of clean-up, thanks to the large gas ports and the easy-to-remove timing nut.

LANTAC 5.56 Dragon Advance Muzzle Brake
  • Price:

    $128.99

Using its patent-pending “short energy pulse” system, LANTAC’s Dragon Advance Muzzle Brake prevents the overlap of muzzle energy by shortening the weapon’s recoil, meaning even fully automatic weapons become easy to control.

Not only do the large gas ports on the side of the Dragon stabilize your weapon’s horizontal orientation, but the top ports work to counteract muzzle climb as well. Not only that, but the quick gas dissipation of the Dragon means a definite reduction in muzzle flash — a boon for any shooter.

The Dragon muzzle brake currently enjoys a five-star rating, marking it one of the best AR-15 muzzle brakes on the market. Customers praised the fact that the Dragon significantly reduced the amount of felt recoil, with at least one reviewer remarking that the Dragon was worth every penny they spent.

Fortis Muzzle Brake
  • Price:

    $90.20

Much like its cousin, the RED, Fortis’s 5.56/.223 muzzle brake is built out of one of two different kinds of stainless steel. Customers have the option of picking 4140 steel with a nitride coating or 303 steel with a bead-blast finish.

It also comes standard with a crush washer to ensure that perfect Fortis fit — just like its cousin. However, Fortis’s standard muzzle brake is also compatible with its Blast Mitigation Device. Together, the two products help reduce concussion and muzzle blast to almost non-existence.

The five-star ratings for both the standard Fortis muzzle brake and the RED mean customers think Fortis makes some of the top-rated AR-15 muzzle brakes on the market, with at least one customer claiming they can never go wrong with a Fortis product.

Ultradyne Apollo Max Muzzle Brake
  • Price:

    $107.95

The Ultradyne Apollo Max sets the standard for quality with unparalleled recoil reduction and muzzle compensation. It is designed for high-performance shooting and provides tactical benefits that both professionals and civilians can appreciate. 

This device is manufactured from incredibly durable CNC-machined 416 stainless steel and finished with a nitride salt bath, making it highly reliable and long-lasting. It is also easy to install and index thanks to the included timing nut. What's more, the indexing slots are compatible with the Dynamount front sight, allowing for a 45-degree offset or standard upright alignment.

This muzzle brake was built strategically to reduce recoil and deflect gas away from the shooter and out of their sightline. As a result, the Ultradyne Apollo Max gives you a smooth shooting experience and helps improve your accuracy.

The Apollo Max is also compatible with the Dynamount barrel mounting front sight to prevent sight deflection.

VG6 Precision GAMMA 556 Muzzle Brake
  • Price:

    $72.24

Built out of 17-4 ph heat-treated stainless steel and finished with black nitride, the GAMMA muzzle brake by VG6 Precision uses a unique staggered top vent system to reduce muzzle rise. The two-stage side ports also help effectively reduce recoil, while the radial cutouts around the front end help to significantly reduce muzzle flash.

Even though the GAMMA is designed with 10.5 to 18.5-inch barrels in mind, it can work with a wide variety of compatible firearms, including AR pistols and short-barreled rifles (SBRs). The GAMMA is also compatible with VG6’s CAGE device, which helps reduce and eliminate lateral concussive forces.

The GAMMA, like all of VG6’s muzzle brakes, is built for reliability and tuned for versatility, meaning it will stand up to whatever punishment your rifle can dish out, no matter how it’s designed.

 

2022 Product Review: Best AR-15 Flash Suppressors

If you’re looking for flash suppressors, check out one of these top-rated models:

Next Level Armament NLX-5 Hi-Helix Flash Suppressor
  • Price:

    $60.00

The Next Level Armament NLX-5 Hi-Helix Flash Suppressor is perfect for night use. When you're operating in the dark, bursts of muzzle flash can destroy your night vision, obstruct your target and create a dangerous situation. The Next Level Armament NLX-5 eliminates these problems by reducing muzzle rise and controlling muzzle flash better than many stand-alone flash-hiders.

Next Level Armament uses quality stainless stock and advanced live-tooling machining centers to create this highly effective, single-unit flash-hider and hybrid suppressor combo. It has a six-prong design to eliminate muzzle flash and a nextride finish for superior hardness and lubricity. What's more, your entire team will love the NLX-5, as it doesn't produce a punishing concussion.

The NLX-5 is also American-made and comes with a crush washer.

When you choose the NLX-5 Hi-Helix Flash Suppressor, you'll get a single powerful muzzle device that does the job of three.

Primary Weapons Systems CQB Compensator
  • Price:

    $110.46

The Primary Weapons Systems CQB 556 is Krink style muzzle device. But unlike a standard Krink brake, the PWS CQB features 5 prongs in the front to mitigate muzzle blast. Each CQB 556 is built out of high quality 4140 steel to ensure durability. This is followed by a FNC LIFE HD treatment to resist corrosion and wear.

As opposed to many other flash suppressors on the market, the PWS CQB 556 is designed to push expelled gases forward instead of out to the sides, protecting anyone standing adjacent to the shooter.

The CQB 556 also increases back pressure to allow your rifle run reliably, specifically on SBRs or AR pistols, though it delivers those same benefits to rifles of any barrel size.

Each CQB 556 goes through a strict quality-control process. Primary Weapons Systems’ revolutionary design make the CQB 556 become one of the best AR-15 flash hiders on the market today.

Precision Armament EFAB Hybrid Muzzle Device
  • Price:

    $151.95

The Precision Armament EFAB (Enhanced Flash Arresting Brake) is built for hard use. The EFAB is machined out of 416 stainless steel, and coated in Ionbond CrCN finish to increase durability. An added benefit of Ionbond coating is a dramatic decrease in cleaning time, as carbon fouling does not adhere as easily to Ionbond as it does to other finishes.

The unique design of the diverging expansion nozzles diffuse and cool combustion hot gases as they leave the barrel. The unique nozzle design not only reduces recoil and concussion but eliminates visible flash as well. Three front tines effectively extinguish all remaining exit gas to ensure the lowest flash signature.

The EFAB can withstand harsh combat conditions thanks to its extreme durability honeycomb body structure. The heavy duty baffles can brace heat and erosion associated with short barrels, full auto fire, and powerful magnum cartridges.

For price, value and quality, the EFAB rates five stars out of five, making it one of the top-rated AR-15 flash hiders on the market. Customers have repeatedly raved about a number of qualities, including:

  1. Workmanship: Customers praised the extreme high quality construction of the EFAB, with one customer in particular having put three magazines with full auto-fire continuously through his AR-15 with no signs of wear and tear on the EFAB.
  2. Performance: Customers were very impressed with how good the EFAB suppresses muzzle flash. Most of the customers claim that this is the best flash hider they have ever used bar none.
  3. Price: Although this is not your average priced flash hider, customers were consistently surprised at how Precision Armament EFAB packs such a powerful punch at such a low price point when compared to the other high end flash hiders.

 

Forward Controls Design 63 Style AR-15 Flash Hider For Dead Air KeyMo
  • Price:

    $95.00

The KeyMo muzzle device offers the ultimate tactical performance. It provides exceptional muzzle rise compensation without reducing flash suppression or making excess noise, which can help improve your handling and accuracy. Compared to an A2 compensator, the KeyMo provides 15% to 20% better muzzle rise control.

Forward Controls Design's KeyMo muzzle device is made from machined, 4140 heat-treated and QPC-coated steel bar stock for unbeatable durability. It has wrench flats on the barrel to support torqueing during installation or adjustment. 

The device also includes tactical combat features, including wire cutter alignment notches located at the 3 o'clock and 9 o'clock ports. These ports are 25% smaller, so more gas is vented through the upward-facing ports.

To install the KeyMo muzzle device, you'll need a 3/4 wrench, armorer's wrench or joint muzzle device wrench. Avoid using a screwdriver, as they can damage the device.

Smith Enterprise Vortex 5.56 Flash Eliminator
  • Price:

    $57.95

The Smith Enterprise Vortex 5.56 Flash Eliminator is one of the most effective flash hiders for the AR-15 platform. It is machined from 8620 steel and finished with a heat-treating process to prepare it for the rigors of duty, high-volume recreational shooting or competition. Compared to previous G6A1 models, the Vortex offers a 40% increase in structural rigidity.

The helical flutes dissipate muzzle flash from numerous points and angles, virtually eliminating flash visibility. The patented helix design also helps direct escaping barrel gas, increasing accuracy with all bullet types. The device is self-tightening to ensure it won't come loose, even with constant firing. 

The Vortex has grooves on the outside surface that minimize contact points for fouling, saving you significant time on cleanup. It can also be used with a Smith Enterprise quick-connect M4DC CQB suppressor.

The Vortex is available in Standard, Helical Grooves and Arc Helical Grooves models. The Helical Grooves model has a shallower pitch to reduce carbon buildup and surface contact.

 

2022 Product Review: Best AR-15 Compensators

When you’re in the market for a compensator, consider the following top-rated options:

2A Armament T3 Compensator
  • Price:

    $59.79

If you need a compensator for a rifle chambered in .223 Remington or 5.56 NATO, the 2A Armament T3 Compressor is the perfect choice. It's designed to reduce muzzle flip after firing a shot and can increase the accuracy and speed of follow-up shots.

2A Armament is known for its precise manufacturing, and the T3 Compensator is a prime example. The device is precision-machined on eight-axis Nakamura CNC machines for unbeatable concentricity.

The T3 Compensator also offers improved firearm control, allowing for tighter grouping and highly effective rapid fire. When the rifle is fired, the T3 deflects some of the gases upward. The force of these escaping gases helps counteract the muzzle's vertical rise when shooting.

This compact, dual-baffle muzzle device provides the maximum compensating effect. The first baffle forms the gases into a geometric pattern to help stabilize the rifle, while the second baffle forces the gases upward.

V Seven HELIOS Linear Compensator
  • Price:

    $142.59

A good linear compensator is a must when shooting indoors to avoid side blast and concussion. If you find yourself in a close-quarters combat (CQC) situation, the V Seven HELIOS Linear Compensator is the muzzle device you'll want to have.

The V Seven HELIOS Linear Compensator is constructed from grade-5 titanium using precision machining. It's designed for CQC-type weapons, but it can be used with any barrel length. 

The HELIOS Linear Compensator uses linear baffles and a large expansion chamber to reduce recoil forces without using standard port designs. As a result, this compensator requires no timing — simply place it with a crush washer to lock it in place. It also tucks nicely into most handguards with its small 1.25-inch diameter.

You can rely on this compensator to keep you squarely on target without punishing you and your team with concussive forces. It also directs sound signature and muzzle blast forward and away from you for an improved shooting experience. Whether you're a tactical operator or a weekend shooter at the range, you can benefit from this compensator's high-performance capabilities.

Kaw Valley Precision Linear Comp
  • Price:

    $39.95

Kaw Valley Precision Linear Comp (5.56/.223) is designed for those shooters that are building lightweight AR-15s. This Linear weighs in at only 2.89 ounces, meaning it can provide forward directional muzzle blast control without adding extra weight to your rifle. There is no poring at the top to reduce flash sight obstruction through optics or sights. Also, there is no porting at the bottom to reduce dust signature when firing from the prone position.

Each KVP Linear Comp is also only 2 inches in length, making it perfect for carbine builds, where length must be kept to a minimum.

If you’re looking for a compact way to reduce the muzzle blast of the 5.56 x 45 mm round, look no further than the KVP Linear Comp.

SLR Rifleworks Synergy Mini Comp
  • Price:

    $90.24

When you're ready to add a compact compensator to your arsenal, consider the SLR Rifleworks Synergy Mini Comp. This compensator delivers on every level. Its classic lines command everyone's attention while its solid performance earns their respect. Whether your focus is competition or CQC, the Synergy Mini Comp is the short, tight and fast device you need.

The Synergy Mini Comp is made from 416 stainless steel for exceptional durability. It also has a melonite quench-polish-quench (QPQ) finish for a long-lasting service life.

You'll value the rugged craftsmanship and engineering of this compensator. It offers the same high-performance capabilities as larger compensators with a compact stance that will impress you from the first shot. If you want a shorter build, the Synergy Mini Comp is the perfect choice.

Muzzle rise and recoil virtually disappear when you use the Synergy Mini Comp, giving you fast target acquisition, smooth shot delivery and an overall improved shooting experience.

Odin Works ATLAS 5 Compensator
  • Price:

    $94.05

The Atlas 5 is Odin Works’ new offering for 2016 — and what an offering it is. Specifically designed for the 5.56x45mm round, the Atlas 5 does away with crush washers, peel washers and shims. Instead, users time the device as necessary to direct the gas ports. Installation is a breeze, too — just use the added hex to tighten or loosen the three screws on the end cap as needed.

The Atlas 5 is first modular compensator for the AR-15, so if you’re looking for the most cutting-edge technology, the Atlas 5 is it.

Trust Wing Tactical For All Your Muzzle Device Needs

Since 2013, Wing Tactical’s mission has been to serve every kind of shooter. Whatever your firearms needs, Wing Tactical has it in stock — muzzle brakes, flash hiders, compensators, you name it. If you’re looking to upgrade your rifle’s muzzle device, look no further than Wing Tactical.