Rangerexpert is audience-supported. When you buy through links on this site, we may earn an affiliate commission that we use for site maintenance. Learn more

Blogs

300 PRC vs 338 Lapua : A Closure Look!

300 prc vs 338 lapua
Written by Erik Himmel

300 PRC

300 Precision Rifle Cartridge (PRC) rounds are designed for big and long-range hunting purposes. The rounds pack a mean punch and are enough to handle heavy games from a long distance with ease.

300 PRC

These long, aerodynamic bullets came into the market in 2018 and have been widely accepted and praised for their remarkable firepower and precision at long range.

.338 Lapua

The .338 Lapua was invented in 1987 specifically for long-range shooting in the military. These high ballistic coefficient bullets have the ability to pierce through military-grade armor within 1000 yards.

.338 Lapua

300 Prc vs 338 Lapua: What’s the Difference?

Cartridge space

300 PRC

The 300 PRC comes with a base diameter of 0.532” and its overall length is 3.7”. The bullets require a long bolt throw, and a magnum action rifle to reach their potential.

The manufacturer gave the bullets a long “head height”(1.12”) to achieve better aerodynamic projectiles and a high ballistic coefficient (BC).

300 PRC

.338 Lapua

.338 Lapua has a smaller overall length and larger bullet diameter. These powerful bullets pack a mean punch despite being smaller in size. They have a massive case capacity (114 gr) compared to the 300 PRC(77 gr).

Trajectory

300 PRC

The 300 PRC were designed for ELR precision rifle shooting and have an amazing trajectory.

For those who aren’t familiar, Trajectory is the bullet’s flight path as it travels downrange and this is measured in inches of bullet drop. The 300 PRC has a slightly flatter trajectory.

.338 Lapua

The trajectory of the .338 Lapua is slightly more curved and has a bit more bullet drop than the 300 PRC, meaning it will drop into the ground before the 300 PRC if shot side by side.

However, both cartridges are similar in terms of accuracy.

Recoil

300 PRC

This is where the 300 PRC really shines. Even if the recoil changes depending on the weight of the rifle and bullet weight when you fire it at a specific muzzle velocity, the 300 PRC offers significantly less recoil (up to 70% less).

.338 Lapua

This might be true that the .338 packs a mean punch, but all that power comes at a price. The higher amount of recoil makes it difficult to use .338 for long-range shooting.

Using muzzle brakes may help solve the problem but the 300 PRC is the winner here, by a long shot (pun intended).

Accuracy

300 PRC

Accuracy is another tricky aspect to measure since it depends on factors like the rifle, barrel life, ammo consistency, the shooter’s skill, and environmental conditions.

Both the 300 PRC and the .338 Lapua are incredibly accurate within their effective shooting range.

However, the crown goes to the 300 PRC for high accuracy, long-range shooting.

.338 Lapua

The .338 Laupa falls behind in the competition due to its higher recoil and the 300 PRC’s flatter trajectory. The bullet is incredibly accurate but needs additional support to hit the bullseye if the distance is long.

Reloading

300 PRC

Both the 300 PRC and the .338 Lapua cartridges can be reloaded with loads of your choice. Reloading might take a larger payment upfront from you, but this will reduce the cost up to 20-40% per bullet down the line.

The most common bullet weights for the 300 PRC are 212, 220, 225, and 250 grains.

.338 Lapua

Reloading gives you the freedom to create your own load specifically for your hunting/shooting purposes. The grains that are the most widely available for the .338 Lapua are the 250, 270, and 300 grains.

Sectional density

300 PRC

Sectional Density (SD) is the measurement of how much a bullet can penetrate a target. The measurement is calculated by comparing the bullet weight and the bullet diameter. The 300 PRC offers a higher SD than the .338 Lapua.

.338 Lapua

A bullet with a higher SD count will be able to penetrate its target better than its counterparts. The SD count of the .338 Lapua cartridges is a bit low so it won’t be able to go deeper than the 300 PRC and punch through thick hide, bone, and sinew.

Availability

300 PRC

Long-range target shooting isn’t cheap. With a smaller selection of bullet weights to choose from, the 300 PRC is a bit cheaper than the .338 Lapua.

There aren’t many long-range rifles available that can shoot the 300 PRC. You’ll have to spend around $6-7 for each round.

FAQs

1. How far can I shoot a 300 PRC?

Ans. The 300 PRC is designed for ELR precision rifle shooting. You may have factory ammo calibrated for match shooting and still shoot out to 1,500 yards with this cartridge.

2. Which is bigger? 300 Win Mag or 300 PRC?

Ans. The cases for both 300 are similarly long but the PRC has a significantly longer cartridge. The 300 PRC is nearly a half-inch longer compared to the 300 Win.

3. Is 300 PRC a belted magnum?

Ans. The 300 PRC is based on the 375 Ruger cartridge case. This is a non-belted cartridge that uses headspaces off the 30-degree shoulder and the standard .532” magnum bolt face. The result is better chamber alignment and improved stacking and feeding from your fixed magazine.

4. Is there a semi auto 338 Lapua?

Ans. The Kivaari is a semi-automatic .338 Lapua mag rifle. This firearm weighs 13.6 pounds empty and operates on gas. The Kivaari provides quick follow-up shots which help in hunting.

5. What are the ballistics of a 338 Lapua?

Ans. The ballistics performance of 338 Lapua based off 5 different grain types:

Grain Type Ballistic Performance
300 gr Lapua Scenar 2,750 feet/second
300 gr Sierra HPBT 2,750 feet/second
250 gr Partition 2,940 feet/second
250 gr Lapua Scena 3,000 feet/second
200 gr 3,340 feet/second

About the author

Erik Himmel

A Part-Time Firearm Instructor

Hi, this is Erik. We all know firearms are dangerous, but only when one doesn’t know how to use and care for them. I have 15+ years of experience with different types of guns and for the last 10 years, I have taught numerous people how to hold and shoot a gun while staying safe and keeping the surroundings unharmed. My neighbors are some of my biggest admirers who enjoy talking to me about their guns, firearms safety and maintenance.

Leave a Comment