25 Vs 22 Caliber : A Head to Head Comparison

There are varieties of bullets in the market with differences in design, functions, and sizes. Among the popular ones, you get .25 and .22 calibers that will come in handy for regular uses.

Ammo in the .25 and .22 calibers are also known as “mouse gun” calibers. They are lightweight and used for light functions that are recreational or regular hunting. 

The first thing to know about them is that .25 is an ACP caliber cartridge, while .22 is a rim fire cartridge caliber. In this article, we will come across various similarities and differences among the two calibers.

What Does 25 Caliber Mean?

Caliber refers to the nominal internal diameter of the gun barrel. It is measured in hundredths or thousandths of an inch. So, 25 caliber means the bullet that will fit a gun with 0.25 inches diameter. 

25 Caliber

More precisely, the .25 caliber is given the title ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol). It has the dimensions of 6.35×16mmSR and is a straight-walled center fire pistol cartridge.

It has a copper jacketed round nose profile that is easy to load in pistols. The bullet weighs only 50 grains. It can be used for compact guns for short ranges but is great for center fires. 

22 Caliber – What Does It Mean?

22 caliber or 5.6 mm means the gun barrel diameter of 0.22 inches. It is a widely used cartridge as .22 Long Rifle and .223 Remington. It is also a popular air gun pellet caliber.

This caliber is very small and round with low recoil on impact. Rifles have a rim fire with this caliber cartridge. This is because the casing is on the rim and not the center. 

It has a high speed and compact size, suitable for beginners because of its lesser power. The range is short and is designed for training, recreational shooting, and games.

25 Caliber Rifle

Although 25 caliber comes less effective for several weapons, it still has some powerful rifles. Over the years, more powerful rifles were made to fit various .25 pellets. 

Some of the popular and great 25 caliber rifles include Hatsan AT-44, Benjamin Marauder, and Evanix Rainstorm. These work efficiently for hunting in the wild, even though 25 caliber allows only a shorter range than many others. 

Other such guns are the FX Verminator .25, the Daystate Wolverine .25, the FX Royale .25, etc. Users have praised the functions of these rifles. They come with different features and designs.

22 vs 25 Caliber Pellet

22 caliber may sound weaker than 25 calibers, but it has a greater range. It can shoot beyond 50 yards with accuracy. But the 25 caliber pellet cannot perform the same. 

22 vs 25 caliber

Apart from these, there are varieties of pellets for .22, compared to .25. 25 caliber may have fewer pellets, but they perform great with straight and powerful shots. While 22 caliber cannot be used for self-defense or powerful shots, 25 caliber pellets will serve this purpose.

Both the pellets perform differently with several advantages. The important thing is to get the right and compatible caliber and pellet pair.

What Is The Difference Between .22 and .25 Caliber?

A .22 caliber is used for long rifles while .25 is for Automatic Colt Pistol. The sizes are suggestive that .25 is bigger than .22 caliber. It duplicates the performances of the .22 but is short-ranged and low-powered. However, both are suitable for very compact guns for being lightweight. 

Comparison Criteria 


Both .22 and .25 calibers are small cartridges. A .22 has a diameter of 0.22 inches while.25 caliber has a 0.25 inches diameter. 

The dimensions of 22 bullets are 0.613″ in height and 0.278″ in width. It has a neck few weapons with a caliber diameter of .226 inches, a base diameter of .226 inches, and a rim diameter of .278 inches. The overall length is 1.000 inches with a case length of 0.613 inches.

On the other hand, 25 caliber has a semi-rimmed, straight case of .615 inches. The neck and base diameters are .276 and .278 inches with rim diameter and thickness of .302 in and .043 in respectively. It has an overall length of .91 inches. 


Although recoil is unavoidable in a shooting, the .22 caliber has almost zero recoils with more accuracy. You can shoot about 10 bullets with consistency. This is because it has a smaller size and less weight to travel through the air at a high speed. For this, it is used for beginners and shooters who use it for target shooting.

Likewise, 25 caliber also has very little recoil. This is because of its size and design, making it more reliable for hunting. This bullet is heavier, it has less momentum and the recoil is even lesser than 22 caliber. 


As both the bullets are small and have low power, they are used for short ranges. 22 caliber is great for target shooting, while 25 guns are used for hunting

The .22 LR can reach up to 150 yds, or even less. After 150 yds, the ballistics of it causes it to lose energy and drop low. 25 caliber exerts 68 lbs of energy/force on average due to its ballistics. So, it can be said that 25 has more capacity than 22, but it is not very significant. 


Both 22 and 25 calibers have lower velocities than other larger bullets, because of their size. This is sufficient for their short ranges. 

The 22 caliber has a standard-velocity around 1,125 ft/s or 1,070 ft/s (330 m/s) depending on manufacturers. Using smokeless powder loads, the velocity increased by 8% (1,200 feet per second to 1,300 feet per second. 

Bullet Mass/Type


40 gr (2.6 g) solid.

1,200 ft/s (370 m/s).

38 gr (2.5 g) copper-plated.

1,260 ft/s (380 m/s).

32 gr (2.1 g) copper-plated.

1,430 ft/s (440 m/s).

31 gr (2.0 g) copper-plated .

1,750 ft/s (530 m/s).

30 gr (1.9 g) copper-plated.

1,640 ft/s (500 m/s).

25 caliber achieves a velocity of about 810 feet per second. This is still high for its size and weight. 

Bullet Mass/Type


35 gr (2 g) JHP.

900 ft/s (270 m/s).

45 gr (3 g) JHP.

815 ft/s (248 m/s).

50 gr (3 g) FMJ.

760 ft/s (230 m/s).

Ballistic Coefficient:

The ballistic coefficient measures the drag factor of a bullet in a decimal form. If the bullet has a higher number then it will have a lower drag. This means, the more streamlined a bullet, will have the less ballistic coefficient. 

Both 22 and 25 calibers have very little ballistic coefficient because of their shape and size. However, the number is different due to various manufacturers. 

Here is a ballistic chart of 22 LR from testing its trajectory:

22 LR from testing its

The ballistic coefficients of 25 ACP is tabulated below:





Ballistic Coefficient



Domes W.C.




FTT (Beeman FTS)





H&N Match





Silver Arrow





Field Target (B Ram Jet)

Round W.C.




SpitzKugeln (B Sil.Sting)





Super H-Point

Hollow Point




Exact King










Crow- Magnum

Hollow Point




S. Bear (H&N-HP)

Hollow Point




Ram Point










Barracuda (B.Kodiak)









Eun Jin











As said before, both these bullets are used for short ranges. Their trajectory is suitable for precise targets at these ranges. It is measured in inches.

The trajectory of a 22 Long Rifle depends on its velocity. If it is lower, the midpoint trajectory is 35 yards at circle top, about 57 yards at circle bottom, and .32 high at 25 yards. It will have a load of more than 7 inches at 100 yards.

.25 ACP has a 30-yard trajectory. At 25 yards it has a trajectory of +2.9″ and +2.8″ at 50 yards.

Stopping Power:

Stopping power means the force or strength of a bullet to immobilize the target. This is an important factor because it determines the overall use and power of the bullet. Any cartridge should strike the targets in the shooting.

This power depends on the energy and penetration of the bullet, along with the shot placement. A 22 caliber is said to have no stopping power because it can’t actually kill but only injure anyone unless it hits vital organs. 25 caliber has a stopping power of up to 30% which can be said to be higher than 22 calibers. 

Average Bullet Drop:

The ballistics determine the bullet drop of both 22 and 25 calibers. This suggests how far the bullet can travel in the air before dropping.

A firing from a 22 pistol will cause it to travel around 150m. A 22 bullet fired from a rifle will have a massive bullet drop because of the zero recoils. It travels up to 500m. 25 caliber has a higher ballistic coefficient, so travels further with a lower bullet drop.


It is the kinetic energy that determines the power and strength of the bullets. But these two bullets have lower kinetic energy than larger bullets.

The .22 LR bullet’s kinetic energy is equal to the energy needed for a linear shot through a one-foot distance. The energy ranges from 140-160 Joules. A .25 caliber weighs 23.4 gr. and has 47 FPE of energy. This is greater than 22 caliber so it has more power. 

Penetration Power:

Any bullet should have good penetration power for greater efficiency. This factor is dependent on the stopping power. In addition, the bullet’s expansion also determines the penetration power. If it is higher, the penetration power becomes larger. 

22 caliber is dismissed as a weak bullet with low power, but it still has surprisingly high penetration. If it is shot in the vital organs, it can enter through tissues and kill or wound easily. 

While a.25 caliber has low power, its penetration ranges from 7-11 inches. Due to its heavier weight, it has more penetration power than 22 caliber and is very dangerous.


22 and 25 calibers both perform quite similarly. This is because 25 calibers were invented to duplicate 22 calibers. Their accuracy depends on the ballistic data. Each is accurate in its distinctive functions.

Caliber Accuracy

The accuracy of the bullets is determined by the weapon used. Mid-weight or heavy-domed lead pellets will provide more accurate results. 22 calibers. Since it has zero recoils, it will allow precise targets in short-range target shooting.

25 calibers perform more accurately in cases of hunting and shooting and are more reliable. They have little recoil and allow consistent aim.

Availability & Price:

Both of the cartridges are widely used due to their light features for regular purposes. However, they differ in price and availability.

Of the two, 22 caliber is more available because it has more weapons. It is used in various rifles, pistols, revolvers, shotguns, and machine guns. But 25 caliber has a limited range of weapons like rifles, pistols, and guns.

25 caliber is said to be slightly more expensive than 22 calibers. 22 caliber has prices from $ 139 while 25 caliber costs from $305.


22 and 25 calibers have quite similar functions. But their accuracy depends on the type of application they are good at. Due to their low power and compact size, they are only used for short-range shooting and hunting.

22 caliber works well for target shooting as it has almost zero recoils and a larger range than 25 calibers. But it can’t be used for self-defense as the power is insufficient. In comparison, 25 caliber is great for hunting in the wild for small animals. It is also suitable for self-defense with a slightly higher power.

Haendler & Natermann H&N Rabbit Magnum II Airgun Pellets

HAENDLER & NATERMANN Rabbit Magnum II .22 Cal 25.62Gr 200ct Cylindrical Air Gun Pellets (HN-92255500003)
HARD HITTING: The Rabbit packs a serious punch! Its aerodynamic torpedo design and heavy weight provide the maximum possible impact and penetration, for an exceptional damage-to-weight ratio.

The rabbit comes with an aerodynamic torpedo design, providing maximum impact with an exceptional damage-to-weight ratio. It creates a super snug fit into a .22 caliber airgun barrel. It offers a high level of accuracy and consistent shooting performance. The penetration depth varies from 20 cm to 7.87 inches with a velocity range of 219 m/s to 719 fps. 

It is amazingly effective as hunting pellet due to the heavyweight structure. You can hit at a medium-sized game or hunting hare, raccoon, fox, and squirrel with a single shot only. The pellet is also a great choice for long-range shooting. Even the container of the pellets is very well designed and comes with a screw-on lid for preventing pellet spills. 

Benjamin Sheridan BD225 Domed Pellets .25 Caliber

Benjamin Sheridan BD225, Domed Pellets.25 Caliber, 27.8 Grains, (Per 200)

  • Are Designed To Complement The Power And Accuracy Of The Benjamin Pap Air Rifles
  • These Premium Pellets Will Enhance The Performance Of Any Air Gun

The pellet is perfectly suitable for a .25 caliber air rifle, with a heavyweight design. These pellets are doomed-shaped, having a 27-grain weight. It is specifically designed to maintain an impeccable precision level with the Benjamin Pap Air Rifles.

Besides, these premium pellets are a great choice for having an enhanced performance from any air guns. They also feature an exceptional fit and finish. 

What Does 25-20 Caliber Mean?

The .25-20 caliber is given the title Winchester, or WCF (Winchester center fire). The bullet was developed in resemblance to the .32-20 Winchester. It was a popular small game and varmint round in the early 20th century.

Earlier this was primarily used for hunting, but now they are also shot for games with a fur-bearing and trapping cartridge. It has been updated to sedate ballistics and light bullet construction. It also has a higher velocity of 1732ft/s with a pressure of about 28,000 CUP. 

Can You Use 22 Bullets For A 25?

Since the calibers are different, it is unlikely that 22 caliber bullets for 25 caliber guns and vice versa. However, the size difference is very minute. 22 bullets have more guns and rifles in the market than 25 calibers. But there are few weapons that are compatible with both 22 and 25 bullets.

Along with design and features, these calibers differ in functions. So, with the same gun or rifle, they won’t provide similar results. 22 bullets are usually made for long rifles, which isn’t always the case for 25 bullets.

Can A 22 Caliber Pistol Kill You?

A 22 caliber doesn’t deliver enough energy that is strong enough to kill a person. However, if a bullet hits any of the vital organs, then you can’t survive. So, it is always about the right shot to determine if it can kill you.

The energy from a .22 caliber bullet is less than 200 ft-lbs some of which is also lost due to recoil after shooting. In case it hits a person, it can wound and damage soft tissues. 

Instant death is still unlikely if a person who is shot with the bullet gets quick treatment. Initially, they will be knocked unconscious due to loss of blood unless it is on the brain or heart.

Are 22 Caliber Bullets Deadly?

Since 22 caliber is a rimfire cartridge, it is used in small and recreational hunting. So, it is understandable that this bullet isn’t very powerful. This kind of power can’t be said to be deadly, but the right placement may kill any larger animal.

However, you cannot underestimate this bullet. As mentioned before, if any bullet hits a person on any sensitive parts, it can cause death. 

It can travel for 2,000 yards at about 500ft/s, so the pressure exerted by this bullet is quite high for severe injuries. 

Is .22 Better Than 9mm?

Both .22 and 9mm bullets have their individual advantages and are very commonly used by beginners. So, it is difficult to decide which one is better.

They are both powerful for small bullets and also have less recoil. The aim remains accurate at any target. However, the 22 caliber can’t be used for self-defense. But the 9mm is designed for self-defense. 

For hunting, you will get better results with .22 as it is an all-rounder cartridge, but 9mm is only used for handguns. 9mm is also louder and expensive than the .22 caliber. So, we can say that both the ammunition are useful in different ways. 

Which Is Bigger 25 Caliber or 22 Caliber?

A 25 caliber is bigger than a 22 caliber. Both the calibers are quite small compared to other larger cartridges. So, the difference in size between them is negligible.

25 Caliber or 22 Caliber

25 caliber is heavier than 22 calibers, so has a down-range momentum. It is better used for hunting than 22 calibers. If you want target shooting then 22 caliber is the better choice. This is because the size allows it more velocity.

Since 25 caliber has a slightly bigger size, it has a lesser range. At present, powerful rifles are designed to use 25 calibers to reach the same range as 22 calibers.

People Also Asked:

#1. Is a 25 Caliber Good For Self-defense? 

Although 25 caliber is a good bullet for a lot of uses, it is inadequate for self-defense because of its low power. If anyone wishes to use it for self-defense, it will take a greater effort of the user to make it happen. 

#2. Why Is .25 Caliber Prohibited?

Handguns with the.25 caliber bullets are made illegal in some countries because these handguns are used for crimes. In addition, movies that used guns were also 25 calibers that encouraged others to use them illegally. 

#3. What Is A Good 25 Caliber Pistol?

Any firearms from Beretta, Colt, and Walther are very good for 25 calibers. The pistols from these brands will allow precise targets for hunting. Some of these pistols are also capable of giving enough power for low-range self-defense. 

#4. Can a 25 Auto Kill?

If a 25 auto is armed with HE rounds, it can effectively kill the opposing armies in a battle. In addition, it will destroy lightly armored vehicles and helicopters, and slow-flying aircraft. So, if it hits any person, they will be killed.

#5. Is 25 ACP Better Than 22lr?

The 22 LR caliber is more powerful than the 25 ACP and fires with more energy. On the other hand, 25 ACP is a better choice for personal guns because of its centerfire-case design. Both calibers are useful in different ways. 

#6. Is a 25 or 22 Caliber More Powerful?

A 25 caliber is less powerful than a 22 because it is heavier. However, it is more powerful than 22 calibers when used for hunting. So, the power varies on the purpose the bullets are used.

#7. Can 22 Bullets Fit In a 25?

A 22 bullet cannot fit in a 25 because it is much smaller in size. In addition, they differ in type, as .22 is a rimfire cartridge and .25 ACP is a centerfire cartridge. Different weapons are made for them according to their diameter.

#8. What Is Bigger a 22 or 25 Caliber?

25 caliber is bigger than 22 caliber and also heavier. It is, however, similar in functions to a 22 caliber. Both the bullets are used for compact guns, as the size difference is almost negligible. 


We hope that the comparison between the two cartridges was unbiased and informative. As you can see the bullets are very similar in structure and function with little differences.

But the differences don’t make one of the two superior or inferior. They are suitable for various uses and are designed to suit your needs. So, now decide which cartridge will work for you, depending on the purpose of use.

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