So, as I said, picked this Shield up on Saturday morning and took it straight to the range. What I bought: It’s the 10035 model number w/o thumb safety. Paid $319 at Palmetto State Armory ($244 after rebate) and $20 transfer fee from my guy who does my transfers. When it’s all said and done I paid $264 for the gun. Which is insane because 4 months ago $370 OTD would have been considered a deal. My initial impressions: This is going to sounds like bitching or that I don’t like it. I do. A lot. I’m just being picky for the sake of honesty. It’s not as refined as some other guns. There is a seam that goes down the back-center of the frame that’s kind of sharp. I’ve noticed it irritating my hand after a while. I’m going to have to take some sandpaper to it. There are also a couple roll pins that have sharp edges that will need to be tidied up. When I choke up on the gun (high grip, thumb forward) the middle finger of my strong side (trigger) hand rubs on the bottom of the trigger guard. For long sessions I might have to wrap that finger in a little tape. I don’t like the extended 8-round magazines. First, they look goofy. Makes the grip too long and screws up the balance of the gun. They are comfortable in the hand though. The main problem is executing reloads. The bottom of the mag catches on my palm when I do a reload at speed and stops the magazine from dropping free. I probably won’t use that one and will stick to the three 7 rounders that I have. Loaded magazines are also a bitch to get into the grip when loaded. You really have to get some ass behind it or they won’t seat. Not something that is a surprise and this was expected. Just figured I would note that. It’s doable. Not sure if that will change as I get rounds through it. My experience with the Shields have always been that getting the last round in the magazine was tough. This one is nearly impossible. I don’t own a loading device and had to use a flat head screwdriver to push the second to last round in enough to get the last round in. Hoping this loosens up with use but with only four magazines (bought two additional ones) it made a 750 round session quite cumbersome. The trigger I love. There’s a little take-up, a wall, and a crisp break followed by a positive and tactile reset. After spending years mastering the DA/SA of the P-07 this trigger felt like a tuned 1911 to me. My experiences with the M&P line were that of sub-optimal triggers but that was 7-8 years ago (I think) and it seems they’ve made up some ground in this area. Those (very) minor issues aside, this is an excellent design. A gun that compact that handles the way this gun does is a revelation. Todd Green (RIP) from Pistol-Training.com has a drill that I like to run. It’s called the F.A.S.Test. You print out the 8.5 x 11 target and use that. It has a 3 x 5 box on top and an 8” circle under it. From concealment @ 7 yards you draw and fire 2 rounds into the box, perform a slide-lock reload, and fire four into the circle. What you want is an under-10 second score. I can usually get around 6.4-6.8 with the P-07. With the Shield I was between 7.5 and 7.9 seconds. So I’m a second slower with the Shield. Keep in mind that the Shield is much smaller and much newer to me. This is a very impressive score (for me). The gun ran flawless for me. I shot it, I had my 15 year old son shoot it, and I found a random guy at the range to shoot it. I probably accounted for about 400 rounds myself, my son about 200, and I had that guy (Tom) put 100 through it. Gun was 100% reliable for all of us. Accuracy is hard to gauge with a gun this size and I didn’t do much to confirm it. I mainly shoot inside 15 yards but I did shoot a few magazines at 25 yards and was able to hit an 8” circle from that distance. I don’t think the gun is as inherently accurate as the P-07 (I don’t think many guns are) and I don’t think it’s as practically accurate as the P-07 either but I think it’s about average and is mechanically as accurate as most. Getting the most out of that short sight picture will take some work though. Overall: I think it’s probably the best combination of size and functionality that money can buy. I don’t think $2000 would get you a better combination. As far as a carry gun I haven’t decided on what I am comfortable with or not yet. It’s hard to give up 16 rounds in the gun for 8. It’s hard to give up the added handling you get with a larger framed gun. BUT… the Shield is probably good enough and it comes with its own advantages, mainly being size and trigger. 8 (or 9) rounds in a reasonably accurate and reliable package that can fit in your pocket just seems like the best of all worlds. Not sure if I’m ready to retire that P-07 but I can say that right now the Shield is on my belt and I’m very happy with it.