Many gun enthusiasts find it challenging to differentiate between PPK vs PPKS, with the two having similar features, such as their shooting range and ergonomics. The Walther arms’ notable difference is their size, which might not be conclusive enough if you want to know the best between the two.
The following article shall guide you on distinguishing the two Walther PP pistols through their varying specifications. Let’s get started!
PPK vs PPKS: Overview
The PPK and PPKS police pistols are popular. PPK is popular in different film franchises, most notably the James Bond series. The PPK variation joined the scenes in 1929, while the PPK pistol was introduced later in 1968 through the new import restrictions (Gun Control Act).
The gun model holds a great deal of history, as illustrated below:
- The Nazi armies used it.
- It is speculated Hitler used the PP pistol to commit suicide.
History aside, the two are reliable guns, with the industry torn between the modern PPKS version for its improved features and the earlier Walther PPK pistol for its versatility. Here is a quick look at their main differences.
It is smaller
Larger in size
No Magazine release
Has a magazine release (on the left)
Best in concealment
Best in accuracy
Therefore, The two PP pistols prove capable of different shooting purposes through their distinct features. Read on to discover their in-depth analysis and learn the winner in each feature category.
Walther PPKS and Walther PPK Pistol Comparison
If you want more details on the PPK and PPKS Walther’s arms’, check the table below for their exterior specs, build components, compartments, and magazine specifications.
Walther PPK/S Gun
Walther PPK Gun
.380 ACP (9mm Short)
.380 ACP (9mm Short)
7 (+1) rounds
6 (+1) rounds
Notch Rear Sight:
Front Sight Width:
Trigger Pull Weight:
5.29 lb/2400 g approx (SA)
5.29 lb/2400 g (SA) approx
23.42 oz/664 g
21.51 oz/610 g
The 6 mm in height difference greatly distinguishes them as it dictates the magazine capacity and concealment capabilities.
We shall use these features to distinguish the Walther PPK and PPKS PP pistols. Let’s first analyze each PP pistol’s advantages and disadvantages.
The Pros and Cons of the PPK Gun
As mentioned, the PPK is the earliest edition. Thus, the modern-day versions adapt the iconic vintage design. Being the smallest of Walther’s arms, the PPK size has advantages and disadvantages. Read through to learn more.
The Pros and Cons of PPK/S
The modern PPK/S also has its share of excellence and mishaps. Check below to confirm.
Detailed Comparison of the Walther PPK and Walther PPKS Police Pistols
To further understand the two guns, discover the Walther firearms specs details. This will help if you want exclusive details that fit your shooting purpose.
1. Build Quality Comparison of the Walther PP Pistols
The original PPK, James Bond variety, originated from West Germany, thus its solid and durable construction. This factor is similar to the PPKS, which maintains the same quality build despite its adaptation as the American version.
- The guns all have a 3.3″ stainless fixed barrel length which can handle tough shooting conditions.
- The materials used in the Walther arms’ frames and slides are similar, contributing to their reputation for longevity.
Winner: It is a tie in this category. The PPK and PPKS guns exhibit a high-quality build, providing owners with pistols they can trust for years.
2. Features: PPKS vs PPK
While the PPK and PPKS have a lot in common regarding features, subtle differences set them apart.
- Grip: The PPKS offers a larger grip compared to the PPK, influencing a convenient hand hold thus better control during shooting
- Design: The PPK, on the other hand, is known for its iconic and sleek design, making it a classic choice for those who appreciate timeless aesthetics.
- Loaded chamber indicator: Additionally, you’ll get some versions of the PPKS coming with a loaded chamber indicator. This notifies the shooter when there is a round in the chamber.
Winner: The Walther PPKS edges slightly ahead with its extended grip and loaded chamber indicator. The features offer added ergonomics for shooters seeking enhanced comfort and safety.
3. Walther Guns Performance and Operation Comparison
Both the PPK and PPKS perform admirably and have similar operations. Their effective range is 50 yards when using a 7.65×17 mm round.
- The blowback-operated semi-automatic pistols are known for their reliability and simplicity in function.
- They both have smooth actions and crisp triggers. You’ll enjoy their accurate shooting capabilities, making them suitable for self-defense and recreational shooting.
Shooters usually credit the PPKS for better accuracy due to better handling capabilities.
Winner: A tie. The PPKS does have a more reliable accuracy, as influenced by the larger size. The PPK has better usability, concealment, and consistent performance to match the PPKS PP.
4. Magazines Specifications of the Walther Arms
Magazine max capacity can be an important consideration for some shooters, and here’s where the PPK and PPKS diverge slightly. The PPK’s compact grip typically accommodates fewer rounds (6 plus 1 in the chambered in 380 ACP) than the PPKS (seven rounds).
Winner: The PPKS takes the lead in this category.
5. Fit and Feel Between the Police Pistols
How a pistol feels in your hand and fits your preferences can make all the difference in your shooting experience. You’ll enjoy both pistols with great ergonomics, enhancing comfortable shooting.
The heavier PPKS comes with everything the PPK PP has, including the red dabbed rear sight. Also, the section along the short barrel is railed, giving a good look at your target in medium ranges.
- The main difference between their feel is the fact that PPKS is 2 oz heavier, as influenced by the longer grip.
- On the other hand, the PPK compact size makes it an attractive choice for concealed carry enthusiasts.
Winner: The category depends on your preferences, where the PPKS is best regarding control. However, the PPK could be your top pick if you prioritize concealment and a sleek design.
Verdict: Which is the Better Design Between PPKS vs PPK
The battle between the Walther PPK and PPKS is quite slim, as both guns showcase their strengths and unique features. We advise going for the PPKS, which slightly outshines the PPK in key categories. These features include:
- Improved accuracy.
- More mag capacity.
- Better grip size for optimum handling and shooting performance.
- Manageable recoil due to its fixed barrel.
Nonetheless, the James Bond PPK is a quality option; its versatility, vintage design, and concealment are worth the cost. If capable, get both and use this version as your backup gun.
How Big is the PPK vs PPKs?
The PPK is 664 g, while the PPKS weighs 610 g.
Does PPK have a Lot of Recoil?
PPK has more recoil considering it comes with a shorter barrel and grip, making the kickback resistance more challenging.
Is the Walther PPK a Makarov?
The Walther PPK is different from a Makarov variety, with the latter only copying the design of the PPK.
Is a PPK a Good Gun for Undercover Officers?
A PPK is perfect for undercover uses through its smaller design. It’s still a common firearm with the FBI.
That’s all we had on the two Walther guns, with the PPKS edging the original PPK through its larger size. It is more accurate and has better shooting ergonomics, offering convenient usage in demanding conditions.
You can still opt for the Walther PPK, which is cheaper and has reliable performance if you can manage the smaller grip. Try looking for an aftermarket grip extension if you like the version.
Remember to apply all the safety measures when using either Walther pistol. So, which variety would you choose, the PPK or PPKS? Leave a comment below with your answer.