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Several factors to consider
1. Your purpose / duty / concealed
2. Environment & clothing selection
3. Holster / belt selection
3. Personal preference

Personal choice EDC SIG Sauer P229 Legion 9mm
With the correct holster, belt and dress accordingly I can conceal and comfortably carry this all day.
 

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The best? Frame? Design? Caliber?

It's all subjective and based on personal opinion, preferences, and bias.

What's "best" for me will almost never be what's "best" for you. Might as well ask "What's the best holster?" 🙂
Exactly! The wording of the question is wrong all around. No one here has the data to prove what’s best in gun or caliber.

if it always works for you then use it. As for caliber, that’s an impossible debate. All bullets kill and we’d be surprised how many people die from .380 and .22 rounds every year.
 

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The answer to your simple question is rather complex and depends upon a number of variables including: the application, the individual's background, preference and training and the context the firearm is used in.

Each combination of responses to that question will yield a different optimum result, and a different answer. This is why we often own and carry a range of firearms and calibers.
EVERYONE has their best gun and caliber. This is a discussion that will never go away or can be answered about best caliber. The truth is the best gun and caliber is the one you have and can carry and shoot safely, accurately and one that you will regularly train with (managing recoil). Shoot placement is much more important than the bullet size and weight. In handgun calibers there really isn't "knock down power"
 

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The answer to your simple question is rather complex and depends upon a number of variables including: the application, the individual's background, preference and training and the context the firearm is used in.

Each combination of responses to that question will yield a different optimum result, and a different answer. This is why we often own and carry a range of firearms and calibers.
Actually, the very best caliber is the one you are carrying.
 

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That question is unanswerable.

The issue is too many variables in that equation. Changing one changes the others, where the end goal of “best balance” also varies from person to person.

You just have to find what works for you personally. It’s not wrong or sub-optimal if what works for you doesn’t work for someone else.
Well spoken. There are so many variables just within the variety of handguns and then throw in the human factor and individual preferences. A well designed study with appropriate data will get you closer to what works. But, it really comes down to the eye and or hand of the beholder. Fun stuff to debate and learn from.
 

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I'm not going to get into weeds about this whole caliber debate thing.

What it ALL boils down to is SHOT PLACEMENT. Period.
Yes!!! And accurate shot placement is often dependent on caliber. My shot placement definitely varies by caliber, but with practice, I’m pretty comfortable with any caliber where I give it a lot of range time.
 

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P229 was designed for the 357 SIG and is not a full size gun. I carry a P229 everyday with a plus 2 magazine and nobody knows I'm carrying. And 357 SIG ammo is out there.

View attachment 477749
I minor correction. The SIG P229 was introduced in 1992, designed for the 40 S&W cartridge. The .357 SIG cartridge came along a couple of years later, first available in 1994. So the P229 was not designed for the .357 SIG, though the gun is and was obviously adequately designed to handle that round as well, and with only a barrel swap.

I have .357 SIG barrels for most of my SIGs*, and a moderate stash of .357 ammo, though I carry my P229 in 40, and have a Dillon 650 set up to reload that.

BTW, I agree with shot placement being primary. If we could all rely on that, we could carry .22 lr and hit 'em between the eyes. That's not very realistic for most shooters in most self defense situations. Just going for center mass and trying not to miss is what often happens real life. So, big, heavy, fast, and more energy delivered to target is a close second to shot placement. If we could all use bags or a bench rest for self defense shooting, stopping power wouldn't be so important.
 

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Heck, .300 BLK, which was designed for a 10” barrel, subsonic ammo, and a can” can just get 2200 FPS. I grant it’s a subsonic round, but it’s also a 220 gr bullet and a good bit longer barrel.
-snip-
And all this time I thought the speed of sound was about 1,100 feet per second at sea level, and a bit slower up at 4,800 feet where I live. So 2200 FPS like Mach 2!!
 

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Point of disagreement. " Carry a full size and everyone knows. "........no they don't. I'm living proof of that fact , but then I long ago learned to " dress around the weapon".........and ya can't conceal a 220 in a speedo , some folks need to learn that one.

Then you get to the size/weight/caliber/ concealability versus shootability, primarily with new shooters...........Micro 9s with plusPplus or lightweight snubbies in .357 or plus P .38 are most assuredly not the way to start folks out. I have a fetish for sub revolvers , have 'em to .44 mag..shoot 'em all well.....BUT....the MOST vicious handgun to shoot as far as recoil that I own is a 340 PD , a hair under 12 ounces unloaded. Heck of a backup gun but not a whole boatload of fun to practice with. Even with the 1 and 7/8th sit's more accurate than most would think , pretty fair minimalist emergency backpacking gun. The Spanish Inquisition to shoot more than a box at a time out of though.

I digress , sorry. Personally I don't have much trouble concealing something full size......but then that's of course a case of YMMV.
My first experience with a handgun was a .45 4” 1911. I own a P365. If you are a grown *** man and can’t shoot a micro 9 then god help you.
 

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This is a close second: a Beretta PX4 Storm Compact with LTT upgrades. In fact, if we're talking .357 (or .40) the P229 wins. If we're talking about 9mm, an argument can be made for the PX4 Storm Compact. 15+1 or 19+1 (which is concealable AIWB for a total of 20 rounds).


Wood Font Grass Gun barrel Camera accessory
 

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A lot of excellent comments, we'll add on, the weapon you practice with should be your EDC weapon! After 30 years in the U.S. Army, the most economical effective round is the 9mm for cost, stopping power, and accuracy. Key considerations are accuracy, speed and tight and consistent weapon grip (acquiring the target, weapon draw from concealed carry and 1st round hit)! If you hit the target with the 1st round, you continue to engage until the target is down! Regarding practice and going thru COVID and high ammo prices and shortages, we got smart and realized that it's not how many rounds you put down range, it is the quality of your engagements. We transitioned to focusing on two shots to center mass on the body, and one shot to the head starting at 7 yds, 10 yds, 12 yds, and sometimes 15 yds. If you focus on quality rather than quantity, one can complete a training session with approx 25 rounds or less. Experts tell us that most EDC engagements are 10 yards (30 feet) or less, so that is where the focus should be. Our EDC is a SIG P320 Subcompact with a Sig Romeo 1Pro Red Dot for the greater part of the year in FL. From late Nov thru late Feb, we transition to a SIG P320 Carry with a Sig Romeo 1Pro because the grip angles are exactly the same, along with all the controls. Ref ammo choice: IMI BLACK DOT 9mm+P, 124 Grain Hollow Point. If it is the standard round for the Israeli Military, then it is good enough for me and it has reasonable price on MIDWAY USA.
 

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This is kind of like asking, "Who is the best guitar player?" Or, "How is steak best cooked?" The answer invariably comes down to personal preference. For ME, the best carry gun/caliber is the one that I feel most comfortable with, that I find reliable, and that I shoot well.

One man's meat is another man's poison.
 

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This is kind of like asking, "Who is the best guitar player?" Or, "How is steak best cooked?" The answer invariably comes down to personal preference. For ME, the best carry gun/caliber is the one that I feel most comfortable with, that I find reliable, and that I shoot well.

One man's meat is another man's poison.
Meh. The only way a steak should be done is well. But it isn’t easy finding a cook who knows how. ;) :cheers: :)
 
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