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Sig P365 XL Spectre Comp Review: Worth $500 over the P365XL?

Sig Sauer's P365XL Spectre Comp is a compensated, concealable pistol with a 12-round capacity. But is it worth the price? We find out in a hands-on test.

We are truly fortunate to be living in times where brisk competition creates better options for consumers. This is particularly true in the crowded market of concealed carry options.

Companies innovate, are surpassed by competitors, then innovate again to keep their lead and drive sales — we all benefit from this lovely cycle. Sig Sauer already had what is arguably one of the best micro compacts in the P365XL, a product of this evolution.

P365XL Spectre Comp pair
P365XL and Spectre Comp

But recently they released the P365XL Spectre Comp, possibly in an effort to show they are peerless at the top of the heap. Is the Spectre Comp worth the difference in price over the base model?

We’ve tested out both, side by side, and we’ll share our thoughts with you below, so read on.

Table of Contents

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Sig Sauer P365XL Spectre Comp: Review at a Glance

Pros

  • 30% recoil reduction
  • Marvelous grip texture
  • Improved optics ready

Cons

  • $1,000+ price tag

The Bottom Line

The Sig Sauer P365XL Spectre Comp is one of the best things you can put in your pants. It’s expensive, but the price has fallen since it was first released.

P365XL Spectre Comp pricing
P365XL and Spectre Comp pricing

Specs & Features

Specs

  • Caliber: 9mm
  • Width: 1.1”
  • Length: 6.6”
  • Barrel Length: 3.1”
  • Height: 4.8”
  • Weight: 20.7 oz.
  • Capacity: 12+1

Features

  • Integrated compensator
  • Laser stippled LXG X Series grip module
  • Custom Works Spectre optic

Source: Sig Sauer

Available Coupons

Background

When recent micro compact wars touched off a few years ago, Glock had a good jump on the market with their G42 and G43 single-stack guns. Not to be outdone, Sig answered with the P365 in January 2018.

Micro Compacts Sig Sauer P365X
Micro Compacts Sig Sauer P365X

This counterpunch was significant because the P365 was comparable in size, but had up to double the capacity with an extended magazine (12+1). Knowing they had a winner, Sig began offering expanded variants of the gun.

The P365XL soon followed and the increased grip size allowed 12-round magazines to fit flush. The Spectre, and Spectre Comp — products of Sig’s Custom Works division — came after.

Who Is the Spectre Comp For?

The Spectre Comp is for those who want a compensated, concealable pistol with a 12-round capacity, and they aren’t afraid to spend north of $1,000 to get it.

P365XL Spectre Comp sc
So pretty and it runs

Fit & Feel

Many things about the two guns felt largely the same. The shape of the grip, the frame, even the weight were very similar.

However, by comparison with the standard P365XL model, the grip texture on the Spectre Comp is aggressive. It offers significantly more grab than the base P365XL.

P365XL Spectre Comp grip
P365XL Spectre Comp grip

The slide serrations, front and rear, are broader and angled a bit differently. Other than these two differences, the guns feel largely the same.

How Does the P365XL Spectre Comp Shoot?

P365XL Spectre Comp boom
Boom!

The differences in performance are subtle. The triggers feel the same to me and tested at around 4.5 pounds on my Lyman Digital gauge with a few millimeters of travel before a clean break reset.

The extra traction you get with the grip stippling is significant and that helps tame muzzle flip quite a bit, but when you combine that with the compensator, you get a little magic based in physics.

P365XL Spectre Comp recoil
That looks about 30% to me

The bottom line is, it aims and shoots essentially the same, but the follow-up shots can happen quicker because recoil is less violent. You can still outrun it, but you really have to try to shoot fast in order to do it.

When you press the trigger with your sight picture established, the sights pop back onto your picture quicker and allow you to engage again quickly.

P365XL Spectre Comp target
Good start

What Sets It Apart?

The grip texture, slide serrations, and integrated compensator set this gun apart from other models. In addition, Sig included a pretty big upgrade to the optics mounting system with the Spectre Comp.

P365XL Spectre Comp compared
P365XL Spectre Comp compared

In the original P365XL, users had to remove the rear sight in order to mount an optic. If you used Sig’s Romeo Zero red dot, it included a rear sight fixture.

159
at Brownells

Prices accurate at time of writing

Prices accurate at time of writing

Available Coupons

Now, the Spectre Comp has an independent red dot mounting plate that is separate from the rear sight. The gun also includes a barrel and trigger shoe coated with gold titanium nitride that does not affect performance from what I can tell.

By the Numbers

Reliability: 5/5

We shot several hundred rounds through both the P365XL and the Spectre Comp with zero failures.

Ergonomics: 4/5

I really like the grip and frame on the P365XL though I often struggle to use micro compacts with my big hands. The mag release is a little subdued, but that’s to be expected with a gun designed for concealed carry.

Accuracy: 4/5

I put together some 3-shot groups from seven yards with the Spectre Comp and they averaged around 1.5 inches. The Sig 3-dot sights were easy to pick up.

Customization: 2/5

This is a tough category for a gun already heavily customized. While Sig has created an impressive package with the P365XL and Spectre Comp, their proprietary accessory rail somewhat limits its customization. Companies like Mantis X have created accessory rail adapters to compensate for this, but they add more bulk along with their utility.

Value: 4/5

Each shooter will need to identify whether the juice is worth the squeeze for this gun. For the price, you are getting an integral comp, stippled grip, and more user-friendly optics mounting system.

There is value in the recoil mitigation as discussed, but you also don’t have to worry buying a threaded barrel and bolting on an aftermarket compensator which you’ll want to check tightness on every so often. When the gun was released, I saw prices around $1,600 though more recently they are closer to $1,100.

Overall: 4/5

Available Coupons

Final Verdict

Is the Sig Sauer P365XL Spectre Comp worth the extra money? In my mind, it is but each shooter will have to make that decision for themselves.

The integrated compensator allows you to shoot more quickly without a doubt. This is great for controlled pairs, small strings of fire, or even faster than normal shooting.

P365XL Spectre Comp shoot
Quick follow-ups

Being able to reobtain sight picture quicker and deliver rounds downrange is an advantage some folks are absolutely willing to spend a little more for.

Is the P365XL Spectre Comp worth the money to you? Let us know in the comments below. Be sure to check out our review of the original P365.

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30 Leave a Reply

  • Commenter Avatar
    Joshua L Hamil

    I went in a little different direction, since there is no safety it will ride in a holster. Since holsters a little more barrel won't matter. I put a faxon extended borrel in a 365XL and it is the best carry gun I have ever had the pleasure to use. Plenty of velocity to make any bullet expand properly and with solid lead it's a great light woods gun. Groups as well as my G19 and 23 and only a couple inch more spread than my 1911 at 15 yards. Can hit a tennis ball every time at 25. Just can't beat it right now

    June 12, 2022 2:12 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Sean Curtis

      There are so many roads to triumph Joshua, glad you found yours!

      June 12, 2022 6:20 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Phil Neill

    Thanks for the review. My 4 year old P366 has been flawless with 3,000 rounds. Outstanding value for me.
    Personally, I would not even buy the standard XL due to it's size. My needs may change and I could consider something different in the future, including the Spectre Comp or XL!
    Corny old saying, "it's nice to have choices" .

    June 12, 2022 3:10 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Sean Curtis

      You're so right Phil, and thank you for the read. The P365 is building a great track record for a lot of people.

      June 12, 2022 6:21 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    W. Patterson

    I am sick and tired of these Soy Boy Grifters who would claim a Bronzed Turd from Sig Sauer for $10K was the best conceal carry ever made. It's all about manufacturer Freebies and not real world value in terms of quality or reliability.

    June 11, 2022 11:52 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Sean Curtis

      I hear you W. Patterson! What should we do about them?

      June 11, 2022 1:51 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Old03Marine

    I find the "is it worth the extra money" debate to be ridiculous.
    Of course it is worth it. And honestly it is worth even more, when it comes to a carry gun. As gun owners everything we do should be geared towards just one thing. Giving you an edge or advantage. I will take any edge I can get.
    Why do you carry? We carry to protect ourselves and those we hold dear. What is it worth to gain an advantage in those scenarios? The answer is everything you have.
    Most carry hollow point, personal defense ammo. At close range it is only marginally more effective than FMJ, and it costs twice as much. But we carry it to give us a little edge. Why do we spend more for a good holster? Same answer.
    There are many things that make sense to be frugal about. Your carry gun isn't one of them. The debate should not be, "why buy one of those when I could have two of these?" it should be " does the extra money give me an edge if I ever have to defend those I love?" You should carry whatever firearm you can shoot as quickly and accurately as possible, however you choose to carry. It doesn't matter if it is a Sig, Glock or CZ. If my lifestyle and career allowed me to carry my Wilson Combat 1911, that is what I would carry. If the Spectre allows me to empty a magazine 1 second quicker with better accuracy it is worth every penny. YMMV

    June 11, 2022 6:28 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Sean Curtis

      Your philosophy reminds me of another "Old Marine" named Jeff Cooper, and I couldn't agree more. I approached this comparison as just that. In the video I said there is a defined improvement in recoil management with the Spectre Comp, but I left it up to viewers and readers to make the decision on whether it was worth the expense. As you stated, it is an advantage in an area of life where we should want all we can afford.

      Thank you for your service.

      June 11, 2022 1:50 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    RAYMOND GRIB

    I can't believe this glorified review of one of the most profit-oriented handguns ever made. All SIG had to do is modify the top of the slide/barrel to allow escaping gases to push the nose down slightly after fired. My old Taurus 669 magnum revolver does the same job to tame recoil, but they didn't jack the price into the sky for that feature. Oh boy, they included different grips and a silly gold trigger. (The marketing gurus at SIG had to dream up other ridiculous ways to justify this price hike.) I own most of the German made SIG's back when Sauer proudly made them with unmatched quality, then over time, Exeter, NH took over production. Look at the outrageous Legion models out now...all SIG did was put in slightly better triggers (from Grayguns) and loaded them up with gimmicks to justify their beyond stellar prices. It is a real sad state of affairs. SIG evolved into an enterprising American company that now uses sinister marketing to push their products. Why not have Danny Craig pose with this new compensated 365? Then you money-hungry goobers can really laugh your way to the bank.

    June 10, 2022 12:14 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Sean Curtis

      Have a great weekend Raymond.

      June 10, 2022 1:42 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      David

      Agree with everything you said, sadly. How $175 in finished material somehow costs over a grand is beyond the pale.

      June 13, 2022 10:31 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Joseph Love

    Every weapon I own with the exception of my Shotgun, 44 Mag and .357 LCP have threaded barrels.
    I use the compensators and flash suppressors as a thread protector.
    The compensator on my .308 makes it almost as loud as a 50 Cal, requires a lot of ear protection.
    The comp on my 10/22 doesn't do anything I can hear.
    When the Schet goes sideways I want sound suppressors on all of the threaded for hunting without alerting every non-friendly. At this point stamps will be irrelevant.
    Next purchase I am attempting is the threaded barrel Marlin 1894 CST .357 Magnum Lever-Action.
    This with a .38 special, the cocking is louder than the shot.
    Would also like a threaded .22Lr auto pistol as long as I'm making my Christmas wish.

    So, No to this $1,100 Sig.
    Looks good as a carry if your pocket money goes down to your ankles.
    Not dissing it, just not in my scheme.

    June 10, 2022 11:07 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Sean Curtis

      Totally understand Joseph. Like I said, it's up to the consumer to decide. Regarding the noise, I didn't notice any significant difference between the two.

      June 10, 2022 1:43 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Todd

      I got the 365xL and I love it I would go buy 2 more 365 for the price of 1 spectre and have 2 new ones plus the one I have now for the price of one .... Not that big of a difference just away to make more money for sig smh sig think of your customers and drop the price to 799 then you will sell this alot better we not no dummies duh

      June 13, 2022 9:41 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Sam Malone

    Owning the 365 and now the 365XL with the Romeo all ready attached . ($599.00) My question is why spend the extra $600.00 ? Not worth it .

    June 10, 2022 8:56 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Sean Curtis

      We're lucky to have these choices Sam. I looked at the pricing to establish value. The base P365XL is running $600 right now. When you look at a threaded barrel and comp from GrayGuns being $330, figure some extra in for laser stippling, the coating, then the upgraded optics plate where you can keep your rear sight, it's close to a push in my book.

      June 10, 2022 1:46 pm
      • Commenter Avatar
        Brad

        Thanks for the detailed review. Personally, I like having a good review before I worry about the price. Is it pricey, yes, a tad, but after the introduction to the market, prices often settle lower.

        June 11, 2022 1:46 pm
        • Commenter Avatar
          Sean Curtis

          Thank you Brad, I appreciate that. When the Spectre Comp first came out it was $1,600 but it's dropped significantly since then.

          June 11, 2022 1:53 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Brooklyn

    Great

    June 10, 2022 6:43 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Sean Curtis

      Thanks Brooklyn.

      June 10, 2022 1:44 pm
      • Commenter Avatar
        Brooklyn

        Your Welcome

        June 10, 2022 10:46 pm
        • Commenter Avatar
          Brooklyn

          Great

          June 12, 2022 9:38 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    tirod3

    Does it do the job expected, yes. But not as a carry gun, the standard 365 is superior on a bang for buck basis. The XL comp is a range gun that can be carried - if you are McSuperized yourself. Not all can do that, and large guns have that "defect" - large and harder to conceal.

    Comps are also louder - by a lot of tests, a good 25% louder, requiring better ear pro. On the range, not difficult to accomplish if you step up the Db reduction of your gear, especially for match use. A lot of these guns will got to those already doing it, for the new to range or competition, tho, a comp - just like an AR muzzle brake - turns the sound 90 degrees to hit your ears worse, not better. Inside a built up area it will damage hearing even more without ear pro. No, very few people go clubbing or attend a package drop off heist wearing their muffs - so, choose for concealment with that in mind.

    And a race trigger? On the street, there won't be issues with a 2 pound difference in pull when attending a 2 way range exercise. Practice makes a better shooter, one well known shooter/writer/LEO won a match with a NY trigger in a Glock. It's not the arrow, it's the Indian.

    Overall, no, the extra $500 isn't worth it for a concealed carrier - the 365 can be carried with a 12 round mag, and considering it was already +4 moving up to ten round, how many will you need? Carrying a reload mag is a good choice, but if that's not someones cup of tea, then carry a Canik with 19 up for less money. We can argue capacity all day long, there will "never" be enough if you are down to your last mag firing from a downed helicopter surrounded by 10,000 insurgents. Just deal with the reality of your own locality, not the internet hype.

    This is a range gun, not a carry gun, and putting all the bells and whistles on it won't do the job if it becomes too heavy, too large, and a snagmaster on the draw. Leave it for the internet warrior and local range champ to brag on until you are both down to the last stage of the course.

    June 10, 2022 5:36 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Sean Curtis

      Well said Tirod. I always emphasize training over gear but our society doesn't always lean that direction.

      June 10, 2022 1:47 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Ray Albertina

    I would ask the question differently..... would you rather have 2 365xl pistols or one 365xl
    spectre for your money. Me, I'll take two 365xl's.

    June 9, 2022 5:50 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Sean Curtis

      Good perspective Ray. You could certainly add an optic, light, and maybe holster for that kind of cheddar.

      June 10, 2022 1:48 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Bill Geiger

    I will challange your "Value" rating of 4/5. Heck, I bought an aftermarket longer, higher quality threaded barrel AND a screw on compensator, which works marvelously, for MUCH less tha the additional cost of this zombie! PLUS. mine, is much more accurate with the addiitional .5"+ additional threaded barrel length! Nope, there is NO WAY I would spend that kind of Jack on this overpriced eveloution!

    June 9, 2022 4:01 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Sean Curtis

      Glad to hear it Bill. I think the only real difference in your scenario would be fitting in a standard, closed, holster but that isn't always a concern.

      June 10, 2022 1:49 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    joes365xl

    It's important to note that while the XL and the Spectre look to be the same size, the XL actually has a longer barrel and a longer sight radius -- albeit a slight 0.5".

    June 9, 2022 3:16 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Sean Curtis

      Right you are Joe, you win the noprize!

      June 10, 2022 1:50 pm
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