If you have ever played Escape from Tarkov, you will know how extensive its ammo system is. The weapons have different calibers, and each caliber has many types of ammunition. Tarkov is currently the only game that is this complex concerning ammo.
Not to mention, each ammo type has different damage and penetration values. Thus, how do you know which ammo to use? This article will show you everything from the best ammo to use to which ones are the most cost-effective, and so on. To make it easier for beginners, we will divide them into tiers.
This Escape from Tarkov ammo tier list will go down to C-tier. Any remaining ammo below C-tier is not worth talking about. There is no reason to use any ammo below C-tier.
S Tier List – The Overall Best Ammo in Escape from Tarkov in Any Circumstance
This is ammo that is usually hard to find but gets the job done. Some of it can be bought or crafted, and we definitely recommend them.
- .300 Blk – AP
- 5.45x39mm – PPBS Igolnik
- 5.45x39mm – BS
- 5.45x39mm – 7N40
- 5.56x45mm – SSA AP
- 5.56x45mm – M995
- 5.56x45mm – M855A1
- 7.62x39mm – MAI AP
- 7.62x39mm – BP
- 9x39mm – BP
- 9x39mm – SPP
- 9x39mm – PAB9
- 9x39mm – SP6
- 12.7x55mm – PS12B
These are your bread and butter. Most of the weapons used in the game are here. The standouts here are 7.62 BP, 5.56 M995, and M855A1 – these being the most reliable ammo in the game, which are good in virtually any circumstance.
As for 9×39, any ammo you find is really good. The PS12B is very powerful and should never be underestimated, and 5.45 as a cartridge can be a bit underwhelming, but these three types of ammo will penetrate almost any armor in Escape from Tarkov.
- .338 Lapua Magnum – AP
- .338 Lapua Magnum – FMJ
- 7.62x51mm – M993
- 7.62x51mm – M61
- 7.62x51mm – M62(Tracer)
- 7.62x51mm – M80
- 7.62x54mmR – BS
- 7.62x54mmR – SNB
- 7.62x54mmR – BT(Tracer)
- 7.62x54mmR – PS
Any ammo you get from here is excellent; the combination of high damage and armor will shred anything in your way. Oh, and .338 AP one-shots if you hit the enemy in the thorax, regardless of armor. But, as with all the ammo in the S tier, the price holds it back.
Whether you use it for long-range engagement or close-quarters combat in Escape from Tarkov, these top-tier ammo types have both the power and the penetration to excel at any range. The standouts here are 7.62x51mm, with which you can kit out some really impressive weapons like the SR-25 or even the SCAR-H, which can go full-auto.
Terrific Small Caliber Ammo in Escape from Tarkov
- .45 – ACP AP
- 4.6x30mm – AP SX
- 4.6x30mm – FMJ SX
- 4.6x30mm – Subsonic SX
- 5.7x28mm – SS190
- 5.7x28mm – SB193
- 9x19mm – PBP
- 9x21mm – BT(Tracer)
All of these are worth using and the weapons that use this ammunition are usually really good; the high rate of fire, low recoil, and high-penetrating ammunition make them excellent and place them firmly in the S tier.
The .45 ACP AP is an excellent choice for all stages of the game; for the early and mid-game, the UMP 45 is great, and for the late-game, something like a Vector is really competitive. The standout here is 4.6×30, as the MP7 seems really strong this wipe.
- 12 Gauge – Flechette
- 12 Gauge – 8.5mm Magnum Buckshot
- 12 Gauge – AP-20 Slugs
- 23x75mm – Zvezda Flashbang Round
- 23x75mm – Shrapnel-25 Buckshot
- 23x75mm – Shrapnel-10 Buckshot
- 23x75mm – Barrikada Slug
These are the best shotgun rounds in Escape from Tarkov. Everything else is barely worth using, even if you’re on an extreme budget. However, these rounds are so effective that it is hard to argue against them. Flechettes are the best at destroying armor, no matter what section of our armor tier list it comes from. They will tear it down completely in just a few hits.
As such, they are probably the best 12-gauge rounds, but Magnum buckshot kills faster if you are shooting unarmored targets. AP-20s should not be underestimated; coupled with a semi-automatic shotgun, these things will take anyone down in a few shots.
As for the ammo type 23×75, which is exclusive to the KS-23M, any round here is good. Zvezda is a flashbang round, and all the rest are extremely effective at shooting unarmored parts.
A Tier List Ammo in Escape from Tarkov – Great, Inexpensive Ammunition
The ammunition here will usually be good, budget rounds or rounds that are inferior to the ones in the S-tier.
- .300 Blk – M62(Tracer)
- .366 – TKM AP
- 5.45x39mm – BT GS
- 5.56x45mm – M856A1
- 7.62x39mm – PS
- 9x39mm – SP-5
- 12.7x55mm – PS12
Although not as extensive as S-tier, this is probably the type of ammo you will use most in your raids. There is a lot of it around, whether through the flea market, crafting, buying from traders, or simply finding it in a raid.
That being said, the standouts here are the M856A1s and the 7.62 PS; these ammunitions will carry you throughout mid-game. They are relatively inexpensive, easy to obtain, and perform really well, especially with how strong AKs are right now.
The .366 AP is the best budget choice. You can simply put the ammo in your secure container and play with a VPO-215. This ammo has the chance to penetrate Level 4 armor and one-shot someone in the chest. It’s so great that you may want to split the ammo stacks in Escape from Tarkov to make sure you don’t lose it all at once.
Lastly, 5.45×39 BT is a great choice; it is relatively cheap and has amazing penetration and damage for its cost. It is the ammo to use, as you will not always have access to the Igolnik and BS, but BT is available to buy at Prapor Level 3.
Full-Size, A-Tier, Cartridge Ammo in Escape from Tarkov
- .338 Lapua Magnum – UCW
- 7.62x51mm – BCP FMJ
- 7.62x54mmR – Lps Gzh
Only three rounds are available here, but the same can be said for intermediate cartridges, which you will mostly be using. They are cheap, readily available, and have good stats for their price; especially the 7.62×51 BCP FMJ, which got buffed recently and is currently one of the best budget rounds in the game.
Lps is the standard ammo for your Mosins and SV-98s, and it will penetrate most things in the game. It is available early game, in bulk, and for really cheap; definitely not something to be overlooked.
UCW is okay, but if you’re using a .338 weapon, you’re most likely at the level where you can afford AP and FMJ, and there isn’t much use for it. Still, on paper, it’s strong ammo if you don’t have either of the previously mentioned.
- 5.7x28mm – L191
- 9x19mm – AP 6.3
- 9x21mm – PS Gzh
- .45 – ACP Match FMJ
All these rounds have in common the fact that they are not very effective against high-level armor, but mid- to high-level armor will not stand up to them. Furthermore, most of these rounds are quite common and inexpensive.
The standout here is .45 Match FMJ, with weapons like the UMP-45. Early and mid-game, this is probably the best weapon and ammo combo to use. 9×19 AP 6.3s are great for shredding mid-tier armor and helmets in Escape from Tarkov.
Related Guide: The Best Places For Loot On Escape from Tarkov’s Labs Map
B-Tier – The True Budget Tier
Here, you can expect rounds that are either a bit more off-meta, requiring different strategies to use them, or an overall ammo that just is not good enough for the higher tiers.
- 5.56x45mm – M855
- 5.45x39mm – BP GS
- 5.45x39mm – PP GS
- 7.62x39mm – T45M1 Gzh
- .300 blk – BCP FMJ
This ammunition is even more readily available than A-tier ammo in Escape from Tarkov. These cost very little, and if you are using a weapon early game or you are on a budget, this is the ammo to look out for. BP and PP are great for an early-game AK build.
What you can do is grab an AK-5.45 and play it as a DMR. With headshots, this is a very underrated strategy; you don’t need any attachments except a good scope, and you’re good to go.
M855 is your bread and butter during early wipes, as you get a few magazines’ worth of them in the beginning as part of your starting loadout. You can purchase them at Peacekeeper level 2.
- 7.62x51mm – TCW SP
- 7.62x54mmR – T-46M Gzh
Only two rounds here; TCW is a good round on a budget. Currently, it does not have many uses over the BCP FMJ, but if you find yourself with a TCW loadout, know that it does a bit more damage for a bit less penetration. The T-46M is pretty good, but it is inferior to the LPS Gzh.
Good, Small Caliber Ammunition in Escape from Tarkov
- .45 – ACP RIP
- 4.6x30mm – Action SX
- 5.7x28mm – R37.F
- 9x19mm – RIP
- 9x19mm – Quakemaker
- 9x21mm – PE Gzh
List of C Tier Ammo in Escape from Tarkov
The ammunition here is very situational, and they do not do anything exceptional, as there is almost always other ammunition that will do a better job. That being said, these are extremely cheap and fun rounds to use and are mostly used for recreational shooting.
- .357 Magnum – FMJ
- 5.45x39mm – HP
- 5.56x45mm – Warmageddon
- 5.56x45mm – HP
- 7.62x25mm – TTLRNPC
- 7.62x25mm – TTLRN
- 9x18mm – PM SP8 Gzh
- 9x18mm – SP7 Gzh
- 9x18mm – PSV
- 9x19mm – Pst Gzh
These are the best ammo for the less meta guns; there are a few hollow-point rounds for assault rifles, and they do a lot of damage. So, do not underestimate the DPS that the ammo can put out.
Final Thoughts on Our Escape from Tarkov Ammo Tier List
That was our ammo tier list; we hope you enjoyed it. Most ammo in Escape from Tarkov isn’t worth using, and hopefully, we clarified what some of the best rounds to use are. For more great insights, check out some of our map guides, including our guide on how to make the most of your Woods map raids in Escape from Tarkov.
Have fun in Tarkov, and good luck in your raids!