H&K417 ( MR762A1) Review And Test

By now, almost everyone has heard of the HK417 and any serious gun owner and enthusiasts know about the MR762 civilian version of the same rifle.  Over the weekend I got to test out the MR762A1, which I will refer to as the HK417 or just “417” for the rest of this review. The gun was tested for accuracy at long range with match ammo and shorter ranges for uses that are ore fitting a ‘battle carbine”, to see how it handles and how easy it is to control when using more speedy and violent manipulations.

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The rifle used  the extended rail to give the gun more space to mount equipment. It has a harris bipod and Leupold  tactical 3x-9x optic in ADM mounts,  For the shorter range, the gun was equipped with a Trijicon SRS and the bipods removed.

The rifle was shot at 800  and 300yards using Federal Gold medal match ammo. The 800 yard target was a steel man shaped target with the 300 yard target being a Q target made of cardboard for testing accuracy.

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Above picture shows the 417 while firing at the 800 yard target.  I found the recoil of the 417 a lot stiffer than I expected.  The gun torques when fired and is very noticeable. I had not encountered this amount of recoil and torque from a semi auto AR pattern type rifle from any other models before and was surprised.  It was something that took me a couple of  mags to get used to.  The muzzle blast was also surprising.  Being a 16 inch barrel, I expected a certain amount of blast, but it was more than I was ready for. I was told it was partly due to the muzzle device design on the rifle.

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The target is man shaped, but obviously considerably smaller than a real person.  But once I zeroed the optic for 800 yards was able to keep 8 out of 10 rounds out of the ten round magazine, on target. Both of us shooting it, had the same result.  The trigger of the 417 is a two stage trigger and though I would not call it a real “match trigger” like the SSA, it is a lot closer to it than a typical milspec trigger.  It gave no problems. It had a little creep in its second stage but it was very useable. Owner intend to replace it with a SSA trigger and I think that is a good idea. If the gun is to be used in the DMR or long range role in a dedicated way, it would be an improvement.

After shooting close to 100 rounds at the 800 yard target I move to the 300 yard target for some accuracy testing to see what kind of groups it would give with the Federal Gold medal match 168 grain ammo.

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This target above is representative of the other groups fired at 300 yards.  I fired multiple 10 round groups and all looked pretty much the same being 2-2.5 MOA.  Other than the two sighting shots, the “record” group is the cluster I circled in the black marker. It is the best group I shot at the 300 yard target. Sorry to say the other pictures blurred, but this is the best  group. The three shot clover leaf is obviously pure chance.

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Lastly was the close range more rapid firing of the H&K417. This is where I started to have some problems with the gun.  I found the gun very hard to control during rapid fire drills.  The torque was back in a major way and it just plain kicked.  It was hard for me to control and did not just lay flat and let me run it like an M4 carbine like the Colt 901 will let you do. My friend who had more time on the gun got a handle on it much better than me, but still there was no tight little impact zone.  He also mentioned the torquing of the gun and the effort it takes.The red dot of course helped, but even with the large view of the SRS, I just plain had trouble keeping it in tight on target. I am by no means new to shooting full power battle rifles and carbines, but this one was a handful.  I have never liked the feel of the piston operated AR patterns and this rifle did not make me rethink that in any way.

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Above is my friends shoulder after 60 rounds with the 417 doing rapid fire drills. I also suffered bruising from the HK. I had not had this kind of experience with any other 762 AR pattern rifle. I honestly found the gun unpleasant for off hand rapid drills when used in the battle carbine role.  I would keep it strictly as a long range rifle.

Now here is the part that will cause many to gasp and call for my head while calling me a liar.

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The gun experienced at least 6 instances of failure to feed or other malfunctions.   The ammo used was NATO 7.62 spec.

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We speculated on the causes of the malfunctions as they only appeared during rapid fire.  Mag problems or ammo problems, I do not know for sure. as the gun started to run fine after this happening within 40 rounds fired.  After it decided to work fine, the gun was fine. A few time we got it hot enough to smoke the barrel and become to hot to hold even the VFG.

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It was a great chance to test the much vaunted HK417 AKA MR762A1 today, and it is an interesting piece. I think for the full on H&K fans they would be happy with the 417, but for its price, I would never buy one or even really recommend it.  If it was 2,000 or maybe 2,500 I could maybe see it.  It is not as accurate as a Larue by any means, and it just simply can not be run as fast and softly as a Colt LE901. Accuracy of the gun is fine. From what I understand, this is not intended to be a sniper precision rifle, so the performance of the rifle’s accuracy is all you could expect from something without a match barrel.  It  does very well with the federal gold medal like most quality rifles. If I had to personally rank the 7.62 battle carbine/rifles, I would go in this order. 1. Colt 901. 2, SCAR H and 3. the 417    The OBR and KAC guns I consider more precision guns so they are not on the list of “battle carbines”.    That is all my personal opinion and it may be different than yours, so you do not have to get bent out of shape.   Like I said above. the 417 is a fine gun, and I am sure the feeding issues may not be the guns fault, but the price asked for it is just not justified. I am sure any real HK fan will be willing to pay for it, but  if that does not describe you, but you want a serious 7.62 battle carbine of the new gen, I would take a hard look at some of the other offerings right now until the prices come down on these, Regardless I would never opt for a piston rifle if I had a choice.

 

 

 

20 thoughts on “H&K417 ( MR762A1) Review And Test”

  1. I guess over in Germany heckler and koch doesn’t have to look at market trends very closely to see that shooters prefer a more controllable rifle.

    So instead they design a rifle that pushes 3200 dollars and does absolutely nothing better than American produced counterparts. Blegh.

  2. not only does it not do anything better, It does most things worse in my opinion. It beat us to death, is hard to control in rapid fire,which it is supposed to be a battle carbine, not a DMR and its accuracy is not even what I would call even rack grade good. and its heavy as hell

    1. It’s a soldier’s weapon designed to kill enemy soldiers in battle. Not a toy meant to impress internet queens. Bruised your shoulder, you say. Are you kidding me?

      1. not its not. its a semi auto target gun meant to be sold in the USA as a target gun. thats why its named the “MR” no one was reviewing the equally pointless 417 select fire weapon you so ignorantly confused it with apparently. and yes it did bruise several peoples soldiers internet tough guy. some of them military and some LE. that is a fact. and several better weapons are better and easier to use as well as more accurate.. But I will take your word on what impresses queens. I am sure you know all about that, Hope you enjoyed your moment of being a a dick head. cause that was your last post on this website. but the good news is, you can go back to learning about what impresses drag queens on the internet

      2. Old post but I have to reply to this. What a dumb faggot comment. Read the review dipshit and get over yourself. A “soldier’s weapon” should be even less problematic than a “consumer” weapon. You are probably some stolen valor homo claiming to be “ex paratrooper.”

  3. Thanks for the great work! I really enjoy your blog. I’m curious as to why you prefer a DI system or perhaps have a distaste towards piston rifles? I happen to agree with you but I would like to hear your elaborations on this. Perhaps in a future blog post.

    1. yeah Joey I will try to go into more detail for you a little later. I do not hate piston, as long as its in it proper place, I am firmly in the hate corner when it comes to piston AR pattern rifles

  4. I like the review but you stated you hate piston guns in the AR pattern. I wonder if you went in this review with your mind already made up.

    1. make up your own mind, did the gun show accuracy ? did me liking DI guns more magically make those bruises on my and the owners arm appear? did the owner having problems controlling it have anything to do with my opinion? when the owner of the gun was shooting it and it had several failures to feed, happen because I like DI better? just because i prefer something else does not mean I do not review fairly. the gun did what the gun did. no matter if I, or the owner was shooting it. otherwise make of it what you will

  5. Hey Shawn good article, I came to this site to read your reviews on the HK MR762A1 and the FN Scar 17s. I have my own opinions but that’s neither here nor there.

    Anyhow this seems to be the only article i can post on… Which is sad because i have been reading and trying to figure out these misconceptions with the 5.56mm platforms, BRM and ARM.

    Hope i don’t get banned for commenting.

    1. Leon, I am sorry about the limited ability to comment. the reason you can not comment on all posts is. We had to turn off comments on a lot of our more popular and controversial articles due to readers personally insulting us. It got tiresome reading about how stupid we are and how we only write article to get people angry just for more clicks. Instead of listening to hundreds of people calling us everything they could think of, we chose to turn off comments on most articles

  6. Just bought the MR and put a Trijicon 2.5 – 10×56 on it. The wife likes it and shoots it well (actually a bit better than I do). Yes, it is heavy, but works fine off a bipod. I wouldn’t call it a tactical carbine and I wouldn’t use it that way, it’s a medium range rifle and works fine in that arena. We’ve had no problems with the rifle, feeds and ejects fine with everything we’ve fed it. Maybe a bit pricey, but it is an H&K. I believe you get what you pay for. I believe the quality is there. We’re happy with the rifle and plan to keep it for a long time, it shoots better than we do.

  7. I own an MR762A1 and find that it feed jams at least every 3rd round, sometimes every round. I’m using the HK stock 10-round mag, the gun is brand new (less than 100 rounds fired). I haven’t tried rapid fire, all jams occur when slow firing from the tripod. I’ll work the issue until I get figured out, but for the price this rifle should perform better out of the box.

  8. Good article, but my experience greatly differs and your article has me a little worried. I purchased an MR762 several months ago and experienced none of the same failure-to-feed issues. Also, I can regularly attain a 1″ to 1.5″ group at 100 yards with standard NATO mil-spec 7.62 ammo (Portugese or Austrian bulk, not sure which off the top of my head, but it’s the nickel plated stuff). To date, I’ve put roughly 300 rounds (various types and weights) through the barrel with consistent results: no failure-to-feed, 1″ to 1.5″ groups. At distance (300-600 yards), plinking 12″-18″ metal gongs is a snap. I really enjoy this rifle, but like I said, your article has me a little nervous. Did you fire your MR dry? Out of the case the upper and lower are coated with packing grease (at least mine was anyway). I wiped it down thoroughly before firing and applied CLP to all the primary friction and function points.

    1. haha no man I didnt fire it dry. I am well aware of how to operate the thing. The gun has had feeding problems for a while and it was not new when i reviewed it. besides the internet tells me piston Ars dont need lube right! thats why they are “better” ! but seriously. the gun is what it is. No need to worry over its lack of performance. Yours works fine. Thats all that matters.

  9. Interesting read. Ive always been enamoured with the HK417, but sounds like its just an overpriced rifle that’s got some serious question marks with performance. That is disappointing especially at the price. I will have to take it off my list and get an M1A instead. Good report with good info.

    1. woah .. I certainly wouldnt recommend getting an M1A/M14 either. You may want look at some of my M1A reviews and M14 thoughts before you go that route

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