Best Escape From Tarkov Ammo Type: What Should You Use?

Best Escape From Tarkov Ammo Type: What Should You Use?
Images via Battlestate Games

Written by 

Harry Boulton

Posted 

18th Jul 2022 16:23

Guns aren't everything in the city of Tarkov, so you're going to want to know the best Escape From Tarkov ammo to be able to confidently take down any PMCs or scavs that you come across. Unlike most other shooters, the guns in Escape From Tarkov don't actually dictate damage or penetration and it is instead entirely dictated by the ammo you load them with. So, for a full guide on the best Escape From Tarkov ammo, split into each ammo type, then make sure to keep on reading below.

Escape From Tarkov Best Ammo For Each Type

Escape From Tarkov Best Ammo
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Largely, the two statistics that define whether ammo is good or bad are flesh damage and armour penetration. Other factors like recoil shifts, tracers, or bleed chance can add to an ammo type, but the worth of a bullet in Escape From Tarkov will always be found in damage and penetration.

Damage is easy to understand, as more damage means a faster time to kill, but penetration is a bit more complicated. As there are six different classes of armour in Escape From Tarkov, you're going to need an ammo that has the best chance of going through every single one. The penetration value largely correlates to how effectively an bullet can penetrate each class. For example, 38 pen goes through class four armour almost always, whereas 32 would struggle with class four and above.

Depending on the situation, you also might want an ammunition that deals extremely high flesh damage despite having very minimal penetration, as the 'leg meta' (where you exclusively aim at your opponent's unarmoured legs) can be very strong.

So, check out the full list of the best Escape From Tarkov ammo down below, broken up into each separate ammunition type.

12x70mm Best Ammo (12ga Shotguns)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
8.5mm Buckshot "Magnum" 50x8 pellets 2 385 +155% recoil
Flechette 25x8 pellets 31 320  
AP 20 Slug 164 37 510 +50% recoil

20x70mm Best Ammo (20ga Shotguns)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
7.3mm Buckshot 23x9 pellets 3 430 +15% recoil
Devastator Slug 198 5 405 100% fragmentation chance

23x75mm Best Ammo (TOZ KS-23M)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
"Star" Flashbang Slug 0 0   Flashbang round
Shrapnel 10 87x8 pellets 11 270  
"Barricade" Slug 192 39 420 +25% recoil

9x18mm Best Ammo (Pistols/Submachine Guns)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
SP7 77 2 420  
PMM 58 24 420 +5% recoil
PBM 40 28    

7.62x25mm Best Ammo (TT Pistol/PPSh-41)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
AKBS 58 12 425 -15% recoil
PST gzh 50 25 430  

9x19mm Best Ammo (Pistols/Submachine Guns)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
RIP 102 2 381 +20% recoil
PST gzh 54 20 457  
AP 6.3 52 30 392  
PBP 52 39 560 +15% recoil

.45 ACP Best Ammo (UMP/Vector .45)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
RIP 137 3 293  
ACP FMJ 76 25 340  
ACP AP 70 38 299 +7% recoil

9x21mm Best Ammo (SR-1MP)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
PS gzh 49 35 410  
BT 63 39 410 Tracer round

.357 Magnum Best Ammo (Chiappa Rhino)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
Soft Point 108 12 455 -29% recoil
FMJ 70 35 385 +12% recoil

5.7x28mm Best Ammo (Five-seveN/P90)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
R37F 98 8 729 100% fragmentation chance
L191 58 33 922 Tracer round
SS190 49 37 715  

4.6x30mm Best Ammo (MP7)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
FMJ SX 43 40 620  
AP SX 35 53 680 +10% recoil
  • You can craft some of the best ammo in the game on the workbench, but you're going to want to keep an eye out for these Escape From Tarkov Hideout items to level it up.

9x39mm Best Ammo (AS VAL/VSS)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
SP6 58 46 305 +10% recoil
PAB9 62 48 320 +10% recoil
BP 60 55 295 +22% recoil

.366 TKM Best Ammo (VPO-209/VPO-215)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
FMJ 98 23 580 +10% recoil
EKO 73 30 770 -15% recoil
AP 90 42 602 +35% recoil

5.45x39mm Best Ammo (AK series weapons)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Indo
PP 44 36 886  
BP 45 37 890  
BT 42 40 880 Tracer round
7N40 52 44 915 -20% recoil
BS 40 51 830 +10% recoil
PPBS "Igolnik" 37 62 905 +15% recoil

5.56x45mm Best Ammo (NATO Assault Rifles)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additonal Info
M856A1 54 37 940 Tracer round
M855A1 49 44 945 +5% recoil
M995 42 53 1013 +8% recoil
SSA AP 38 57 1013 +6% recoil

7.62x39mm Best Ammo (SKS/AKM/RD-704/Mk47)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
PS 57 35 700  
BP 58 47 730 +5% recoil
MAI AP 47 58 730 +10% recoil

.300 Blackout Best Ammo (MCX .300)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
M62 54 34 442 Tracer round
AP 51 48 635 +10% recoil

7.62x51mm Best Ammo (RFB/MDR 7.62/SCAR-H/DVL-10)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
M80 80 41 833  
M62 79 44 816 Tracer round
M61 70 64 910 +10% recoil
M993 67 70 910 +8% recoil

7.62x54mmR Best Ammo (Mosin/SV-98/SVDS)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
PS 84 45 875 +8% recoil
BT 78 55 875 Tracer round
SNB 75 62 875 +10% recoil
BS 72 70 785  

12.7x55mm Best Ammo (ASh-12)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
PS12A 165 10 290 -12% recoil
PS12B 102 46 300 +15% recoil

.338 Lapua Magnum Best Ammo (Mk-18/AXMC)

Name Flesh Damage Armour Penetration Speed (m/s) Additional Info
FMJ 112 47 900  
AP 115 79 849 +10% recoil

So, that rounds up this guide on the best Escape From Tarkov ammo, split into each ammo type. While not every ammo in the game is worth using, there are definitely a large amount of options you can take for various different playstyles too. However, some of these ammo you won't be able to find easily, so make sure to check out the Escape From Tarkov flea market banned items to get all the information.

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