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Canik TP9SFX Review: Best Value $500 Handgun

Canik TP9SFX laid out
The best bang-for-the-buck handgun for $500? The Canik TP9SFX is our current winner due to flat shooting, 100% reliability, and an optics-ready design.
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    Johnny hands-on reviews the TP9SFX for us in the video above. For even more details and the best places to get one…read on!


    A lot of pistols try to say they are the best bang-for-your-buck.

    But there can only be one. And the Canik TP9SFX might be it.

    Canik TP9SFX nice
    Canik TP9SFX — oh, ya.

    Canik has been around for a while now and has a HUGE line of pistols to show off, so it’s high time we put one through the paces and find out just how these Turkish gats do on the range.

    By the end you’ll know if the TP9SFX is right for you.

    $499
    at Palmetto State Armory

    Prices accurate at time of writing

    Prices accurate at time of writing

    Available Coupons

    Table of Contents

    Loading…

    Canik TP9SFX Review at a Glance

    Pros

    • 20+1 magazine
    • Super flat shooting
    • Zero malfunctions during testing
    • Optic-ready with mounting plates
    • Around $500

    Cons

    • Grip could be more aggressive
    • Acceptable sights
    • Slide stop not great for smaller hands

    The Bottom Line

    The Canik TP9SFX is a great competition-ready 9mm out of the box. Reliable, flat-shooting, and comes with optics mounting plates. You can’t ask for much more for the price point of $550.

    Specs & Features

    Specs

    • Capacity: 20+1 rounds of 9mm
    • Weight: 1.83 pounds
    • 6.2″ x 1.4″ x 8.3″

    Features

    • Optics cut with included mounting plates
    • Rear black sight and front fiber optic
    • Comes with 2 20-round magazines

    Background

    I’ve long been of the opinion that foreign firearms don’t really get the respect they often deserve. And Turkey is a great example… sort of.

    If you’ve looked at budget shotguns in the last 20 years, you’ll find that a huge host of them are made in Turkey.

    Beretta 686 Silver Pigeon I Sporting Shotgun action
    Beretta 686 Silver Pigeon I

    Some of them are outstanding for their price, some of them can run on par with high-end examples from Beretta or Benelli.

    But most of them are what you would expect when you pay under $200 for a shotgun.

    Turkey has been in the firearms game for a long time but Canik has only been on the US market for about 10 years.

    Canik TP9SFX more hey

    Think of Canik as a Turkish Armalite, because like Armalite, Canik is actually a major Aerospace company also.

    Partnering with Century Arms, they’ve been importing the TP Series pistols to the US for the last decade…and the reports of these gats have almost always been favorable.

    Who Is It For?

    Someone who wants the best bang-for-the-buck optics ready 9mm out of the box.

    Even more props if you’re looking for a competition gun. Because of it’s size, capacity, and optics-readiness, the TP9SFX is best suited for USPSA Carry Optics division.

    The mag is too big for Production…and why limit yourself to 10 rounds when you’ve got up to 21!

    Fit & Feel

    The Canik TP9SFX feels great in the hand But keep in mind it’s a full-sized handgun with a 5.2″ barrel. Plus the 20-round magazines give it even more heft.

    Canik TP9SFX
    Canik TP9SFX

    See the dots on the backstrap? It seems like they should do a lot for grip but they don’t. Especially during moist-season in the South.

    Even the side factory stippling doesn’t help as much if you’re sweating. I’d grab some Talon grip tape.

    Talon Grips
    Talon Grips

    I do give it extra props for a great slide stop. For normal to large hands it’s great and I love how there’s an extra ledge for even more purchase.

    Mag release can be switched out to be left-friendly…but there’s no way for the slide stop. Get ready for some good ole slingshot reloading then.

    How about looks?

    Canik TP9SFX nice
    Canik TP9SFX

    I think it looks great with the serrations and slide porting. If you choose not to mount optics…the optics cut melds right in and doesn’t look off.

    Range Report

    We love us some budget guns.

    But we love value, even more, we want our dollar to go as far as it can while still delivering quality and reliability.

    After hearing that, our friends at GunPrime said that we had to give the TP9SFX a shot. So we did!

    $499
    at Palmetto State Armory

    Prices accurate at time of writing

    Prices accurate at time of writing

    Available Coupons

    Reliability

    I got it out to the range and has run steel and brass through it by the box load. And simply, it runs.

    Always.

    Zero malfunctions in a review is always awesome to report!

    Claiming that the TP9SFX is “competition ready” out of the box… Canik actually delivers on the claim.

    Canik TP9SFX flat
    Flat Shooter

    Shootability

    This is a full-size gun, and it shoots like one. 5.2″ barrel, 20+1 magazine, and a rather sexy Tungsten Grey Cerakote finish, the gun shoots flat and accurately.

    Follow-up shots are quick due to a trigger with an awesome reset, very short and crisp. While the pull overall is a touch long, the reset is fantastic.

    Sights

    Iron sights are standard on the TP9SFX.

    Sidebar: the SF stands for “Special Forces” and we can’t figure out the X but we’re hoping it stands for “Xtreme” because it adds the porting and optic mount.

    Now back to the sights.

    They aren’t bad at all, not our favorite but definitely work.

    Canik TP9SFX Dual Sites
    Canik TP9SFX front and rear sights look… decent

    Really though they are kind of secondary since the slide comes cut for red dots AND the box includes mounting plates for all of the major large red dot footprints.

    This is outstanding and a massive increase in value to the package. Getting a slide milled isn’t cheap and often costs almost as much or more as the red dot itself.

    Tested Pistol Red Dots
    Tested Pistol Red Dots

    Mounting plates aren’t as good as a milled footprint, but these give you the flexibility to use what you want and change your mind later.

    Not sure what optic to put on the TP9SFX? Check out our favorite pistol red dots.

    Plus, these are actually made of metal. And well made. Unlike some other major brands. Cough…Glock.

    Canik TP9SFX heavy metal plates
    Metal! Actual metal. Like, from the ground.

    Accuracy

    I shot a group with iron sights at a respectable range. Other reviewers have been shooting dead nuts but I’m not a sniper.

    Canik TP9SFX targets
    Canik TP9SFX Group

    I hate to say it all the time…but the TP9SFX will likely outshoot your ability.

    In The Box

    Oh man, this comes with everything you could ask for…

    2 magazines, cleaning kit, 4 mounting plates, extra backstraps, magazine loader, and even a holster!

    Canik TP9SFX everything in the box
    Everything in the box

    Okay, the holster is kind of cheap. But it’s better than sticking it down your pants.

    This is probably the most extras you get in a standard pistol package for anything under $1,000.

    For pure value, this is punching way outside its weight class.

    What Sets It Apart?

    Did I mention it’s a great value?

    You’re getting a 20+1 flat-shooting 9mm that comes optics-ready with mounts at around the $500 mark. Plus you get two mags, an ok holster, and a case. Plus everything looks great too!

    By The Numbers

    Reliability: 5/5

    Two words: it runs. 

    Ergonomics: 4/5

    Oversized Ambi controls, backstrap options, great grip texture. Good ergos. 

    Accuracy: 4/5

    Other reviewers have driven nails with the TP9 series. I didn’t but that’s more on me!

    Customization: 4/5

    RMR / reflex options with adapters plus a rail upfront. Not bad in the options department.  

    Value: 5/5

    Name me more value in the entire industry. No, really, down in the comments…do it.

    $499
    at Palmetto State Armory

    Prices accurate at time of writing

    Prices accurate at time of writing

    Available Coupons

    Overall: 4.5/5

    Again, we wish it was U.S. made. But that aside, solid gun. Huge capacity. Huge value. 

    Upgrades

    If you’re going the competition route and especially if you end up in USPSA Carry Optics division…you’ll need a red dot.

    Check out all our favorites…but if we had to choose one right now it’d be the Holosun 507c X2 ACSS.

    Holosun 507C X2 Primary Arms Vulcan Reticle
    Holosun 507C X2 Primary Arms Vulcan Reticle
    $319
    at Primary Arms

    Prices accurate at time of writing

    Prices accurate at time of writing

    Available Coupons

    Looking at more of a home defense route with a light? We love the TLR-1 HL for it’s bang-for-the-buck factor.

    $159
    at OpticsPlanet

    Prices accurate at time of writing

    Prices accurate at time of writing

    Available Coupons

    How about ammo? Check out the currently in-stock options at Best Places to Buy Ammo Online.

    Final Verdict

    We can’t find a pistol that delivers as much value as the TP9SFX.

    The reliability, quality, and boatload of extras that come in the box all for a shockingly low price really puts the TP9SFX in a class of its own. If you want to get into handgun competition or have a really awesome range gun right out of the box, this is an incredible option.

    $499
    at Palmetto State Armory

    Prices accurate at time of writing

    Prices accurate at time of writing

    Available Coupons

    Throw a white light on the rail and this is a formidable home defense pistol.

    Is there anything that can match the value delivered by Canik? Let us know in the comments! If you’re looking for the perfect red dot to match with your new gat, take a look at the Best Pistol Red Dots!

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    53 Leave a Reply

    • Commenter Avatar
      Justin Frank

      “Acceptable” sights? Warren Tactical are some of the best irons you can get. There’s a reason we all run them on match guns. Other than that your review is pretty spot on.

      January 25, 2024 9:09 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      SrsTwist

      I wouldn't buy a Canik, even though they make a good pistol. Why?

      - Turkey is an Islamist regime. I don't give my money to Islamist countries.

      - Erdogan is a psychopath. Relations between Turkey and the U.S. could be cut off at any moment. Or sanctions imposed. That could mean no parts and no customer service for your pistol.

      November 27, 2023 10:40 am
      • Commenter Avatar
        Charlie

        Whatever makes you happy killa. The Turks are a great, hardworking people, regardless of Erdogan. A trade shutdown with Turkey is an alarmist opinion and there are no indications of any imminent break with the NATO ally.

        This pistol is so much fun to shoot and modify. As a 1911 guy, I’m really impressed with this striker fired pistol. Also impressed with the potential. After replacing springs, guide rod, and installing trigger with reduced travel, it is a great shooter. SRO mounted on top.

        December 13, 2023 10:57 pm
      • Commenter Avatar
        VA Packer Fan

        Looks like there is a Canik being built in Florida, just like all the other foreign gun makers, they have a US facility now as well. Regarding Islamic country, their government is not Islamic, but rather secular. Islamic law does not rule the country and they have shown stronger alliances with western governments rather than Islamic. If I were to drive every buying decision I made by politics I wouldn't be able to buy anything. It's tough to buy a head of lettuce or an avocado without it coming from the People's Republic of California.

        February 21, 2024 12:57 pm
      • Commenter Avatar
        SEJ

        Good for you. Be sure to ditch all the technology you own, because most of it is not manufactured in the US of A

        March 3, 2024 4:22 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Jim green

      Does it have anything but a trigger safety?

      June 24, 2023 10:37 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Adam Andreas

      Pew Pew Tactical is a ‘go to’ for thorough and professional gun reviews. I appreciate the proper use of grammar and coherent sentences in all PPT articles. A well worded review instills a sense of confidence that the author is a competent and reliable source. Great stuff as always from Pew Pew Tactical!

      March 25, 2023 8:44 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Larry Stringfield

      You can't beat the Caniks for anywhere near the price. The one issue I have with them is they're habit forming. I should know. I have seven and looking at a couple more.

      December 13, 2022 5:03 pm
      • Commenter Avatar
        fred

        I've become a fan of Caniks as well, though I have fewer than you. :) Reliable, accurate, easy to shoot, and relatively inexpensive. I might wind up picking up another one or two, also.

        December 26, 2022 11:24 pm
      • Commenter Avatar
        VA Packer Fan

        I have 5, so I know what you mean. Once you shoot one, you'll understand what us Canik lovers see in them. The Rival and Elite Combat Executive are great guns. A friend of mine has stayed away from 9mm guns because he didn't really care for the mainstream brands (Glock, Sig, Springfield Armory, etc.). After shooting my Rival, he told his wife he wanted one for Christmas. It's his new favorite gun and he thanks me for turning him to the Canik every time we shoot.

        February 21, 2024 1:00 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Larry

      After a lot of rounds tp9sfx has been known to break a fireing pin

      April 12, 2022 3:40 am
      • Commenter Avatar
        Bob

        I've heard 60000 rounds without a failure

        August 15, 2022 7:46 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      David

      Have one. Love it.

      April 8, 2022 3:41 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Mikial

      I've got a TP9SFx and I love it. I put a Holosun on it in just a couple of minutes and it's everything the article says it is. Highly recommended.

      April 8, 2022 11:07 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Jim Pawlak

      I like the Century Canik TP9 Elite Combat w/ Vortex Viper 9mm FDE HG6481DVN. I like it a lot. However, I don't like the price @ <$900 OTD. Recently purchased PSA Dagger 9mm w/ SW1 Extreme Carry Cut Doctor Slide & Threaded Barrel, 2-Tone FDE and the Vortec Viper for $600 OTD. I'm looking forward to many rounds down range through my next range toy which is certainly more than 2/3rds of the Canik even though that's the actual cost.

      April 8, 2022 7:58 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      bill

      I just saw a review of the Canil Rival. The barrel has been shortened to 5 inches to make a legal comp gun.
      $700

      April 8, 2022 5:39 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Tim

      I would like to see the tp9sfx compared to the mete sfx. I haven’t fired the tp9 but the trigger doesn’t feel as good to me dry firing at the gun shop as my mete. Would you consider firing them side by side since you have done reviews on both?

      April 7, 2022 8:07 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Eric T

      How does this compared to the IWI Masada. They are both around the same price point?

      April 7, 2022 7:47 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Mark Schoch

      I bought extra magazines and added a couple Taylor Freelance +9 magazine extensions for a 27 + 1 capacity for the SFX and 27 rd spare magazine for a perfect home defense pistol. Also, a lot of fun to magazine dump at the range. They also look really good.

      Unfortunately Taylor Freelance's magwells look a little outlandish. Other magwells won't work with the magazine extensions... unless you take a dremell to them, then they work great.

      April 7, 2022 5:23 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      FNG

      Surprised this wasn't replaced with the Canik Mete SFT!

      April 7, 2022 5:20 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Bob

      Turkey is no longer a U.S. ally, in fact, it is frequently an antagonist fighting against our interests.
      As such, I will not support their economy with my USA earned dollars. There are plenty of good alternatives. Same reasons I will never buy Russian or Chinese. And, NO, my tv, phone, avr, etc are all NOT chinese.

      April 7, 2022 4:52 pm
      • Commenter Avatar
        Thomas

        It looks like a great gun, but, I will agree with Bob.

        April 7, 2022 6:26 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Willinghamkaye4@gmail.com

      Got my TP9 SFx June 11. First try, 50 ft target, 10 shots, 8 of them kill shots. Weapon cycles smooth as silk, minor recoil, sights allow quick target acquisition, trigger break is short with immediate reset. Also 10 rounds point and shoot from the hip,,, amazing, formidable, truly military grade. I'm wearing mine with confidence. W.D.

      June 26, 2021 9:21 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Tee

      I want one, but all I find are OOS or 2x MSRP! Wish me luck.

      June 3, 2021 10:20 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Larry VanBuskirk

      I have 3 canik s, the first one I purchased was an s120 a cz75b clone about 10 years ago. I now have sf and the sfx. They are great guns at any price I have several other more expensive handguns but the sf is the first one I put in my bag on the way to the range. The mecger mags are great and relatively inexpensive and a freedom smith trigger reduces the trigger travel. Only drawback it's Turkish made

      November 13, 2020 7:43 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Kevin Martin

      Great pistol. Even better when I found a 'just like new only used' blackout model for 350! SCORE!!

      August 9, 2020 5:06 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Chris

      Slide release only on the left side is rather no ambi.

      August 3, 2020 10:46 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Norm

      Does Canik chamber pistols for any caliber other than 9mm?

      August 2, 2020 4:37 pm
      • Commenter Avatar
        Ray V

        Hi Norm - the only caliber Canik features on their USA website is 9mm. Perhaps they make other caliber handguns, but are restricted to only 9mm for export to the USA via Century Arms. That’s only speculation on my part.

        August 2, 2020 4:47 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Nick

      I had a hell of a time finding magazines with the Tungsten color base plate, so I went with the all black. I agree with everything you said. This is now my competition pistol. With a red dot it’s absolutely the best I’ve used including Glock 34, Walther PPQ Match, FN, and CZ P10. Really incredible out of the box for the price. Additional, using 124 gr bullets feels like a dream in your hands. Only problem I had at the range initially has the slide kicking with the last round but that eventually played itself out after about 100 rounds, so 4-5 magazine exchanges. Lastly, I had to drive to MN to find a dealer. I live in ND. Guys (and Gals) you will not be disappointed. Promise

      August 2, 2020 10:16 am
      • Commenter Avatar
        Ray V

        Hi Nick - I had the same experience when breaking in my TP9SFX. But after break-in, it’s been a very sweet shooter !!! Also, mounting a full-size weapon light such as Streamlight’s TLR-1HL (or LAPG’s XWL) helps me eliminate muzzle flip.
        Happy shooting !!!

        August 2, 2020 4:32 pm
      • Commenter Avatar
        Ray V

        Nick? I forgot to mention that I also could only find mags with black base plates when I wanted more....so likewise, I have several in black (plus the original 2 in gray).

        August 2, 2020 4:37 pm
      • Commenter Avatar
        John

        TTI CZ75 baseplates fit the TP9SFX magazines, if that would suit you.

        August 9, 2020 3:49 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      dsutton

      Without going into the US vs. the rest of the world stuff, the Canik is about the same price as the M&P. I have handled a Canik, and everything about it was rattily. I've owned a couple of M&Ps, a .45 is my current sidekick. The differences between the M&P and Canik are noted, but it'd be hard for me to say that the Canik is a better value than the M&P, especially since it doesn't have a long term track record.

      August 1, 2020 3:31 pm
      • Commenter Avatar
        Ray V

        Hi Mr/Ms Sutton - I cannot disagree with your logic regarding longevity, and can only attest that I’ve enjoyed shooting both pistols. As they say, “Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder”. Happy shooting !!

        August 1, 2020 7:34 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Paul Dalton

      I'd really appreciate seeing information (from someone who has spent time shooting both) comparing the specs, features, accuracy, shootability, etc. of this Canik TP9SFX to the current S&W M&P 2.0 (5" barrel).

      "Value" is a subjective conclusion, but it's really impossible to question that judgment without facts.

      July 31, 2020 11:23 am
      • Commenter Avatar
        Ray V

        Hi Paul - I own the Canik TP9SFX and two (2) S&W M&P 2.0, 5" barrel pistols (one in black and one in FDE). As an active shooter who owns and loves all 3 guns, I can point out a few comparisons for you:
        1) the Canik has a 5.2" barrel, providing you slightly more accurate shooting than the M&P 5" barrel;
        2) the Canik mags hold 20-rounds vs the M&P mags hold 17-rounds;
        3) the Canik trigger feels 1-1.5 lbs lighter than the M&P 2.0 trigger.
        My final recommendation for you is this: if you buy the Canik, order a spare "spring set" from Canik, since they are Turkish-made, and parts may become unavailable / hard to find in future years. Personally, I do not regret buying any of my 3 subject handguns.

        P.S. I have an LAPG XWL mounted on each of them, which helps reduce muzzle flip on each one.

        July 31, 2020 6:08 pm
        • Commenter Avatar
          David, PPT Editor

          Awesome breakdown, thanks!

          July 31, 2020 6:56 pm
        • Commenter Avatar
          Nick

          Thats a very good point on the "spring set". Crap. As an aside, I found it interesting that I could not find extra magazines on the Century Arms website, however, could through MagShack. I prefer MagShack over GunMag, both in price and availability.

          August 2, 2020 7:43 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Felix

      I got mine with the Vortex red dot for $479 total AFTER I got a $150 cash back on a new Credit card.
      An absolutely fantastic gun that shoots like a dream. Believe the hype. Everything written about this gun is true. Lots and lots of gun for the price point.

      July 31, 2020 7:59 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Emil Ez

      Nope not on my watch, I’d rather put down more to support American manufactured Quality firearms. U.S. made firearms are not always quality guns that’s a given but there are many that are and some are real bargains to boot. Consider that with U.S. responsive professional customer service Vs Century’s incredibly and positively poor CS and I cannot bring myself to a place where I’d actually make this purchase. That is just my take and it isn’t intended to negate anyone else’s. If I’m “missing out” then that’s fine but I really don’t think I am and at least I hold my ground.

      July 31, 2020 1:00 am
      • Commenter Avatar
        Felix

        If that's your reasoning I understand but on the same note, I would think you wouldn't even stopped to look at this article due to the fact that its not American made. Kinda feel you're like the author of this article. A little frustrated that this foreign gun is better than a lot of american guns. And "yes", I am american with lots of american guns but I just call things the way I see them. If the product is good, then it's good regardless of "who" made it. I can't sit here and buy an inferior gun just because it's made in the US and be proud of it. I should be demanding that "We" step up our game and build better products than the rest of the world in a decent price range instead of trying to get rich on everything we sell. Just sayin'.

        July 31, 2020 8:16 am
      • Commenter Avatar
        Fyrfytr998

        Lol, "I won't buy a top quality pistol, because, 'Merica." You might as well admit you heard the rumor that Canik supposedly secretly funds Al Qaeda and call it a day. I'd rather buy the Canik and shoot a terrorist with it, than trust my life to a lesser quality weapon.

        July 31, 2020 11:17 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Daim

      If you dont buy one and are a true gun fan you are silly and missing out. Put a surefire light vortex dot kydex holster for under a grand. Hit steel 20 out of 20 with blazer brass. Feels kinda similar to fn 509.

      July 30, 2020 11:29 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Bo Diddy

      I would not buy anything associated with Century Arms. I bought one of their American made AK's and the extractor retaining pin broke after 30 shots. I took it back to the gun store I bought it from and they could not get Century Arms to respond at all, even after several tries. So I had to take it to another gun shop who specialized in AK's and they fixed it. Century Arms customer service sucks!

      July 30, 2020 9:18 pm
      • Commenter Avatar
        Shepherd of Fire

        Yeah, Century has a bad reputation due to putting out junk AKs. The C39s and VIKAS have mediocre at best metallurgy and quality control is terrible on several components. Lots of testimony and videos to back that up. Their WASR10s are pretty good since they're mostly Romanian imported parts assembled by them. I would still do a full teardown and inspect every part, given their history, or....... Just build your own AK if you want one.

        July 30, 2020 9:45 pm