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Winchester SX4 20ga Compact Shotgun Review

Aug 12, 2021

The Winchester SX4 20ga compact is a gun made for smaller-framed shooters such as youth. I picked up this SX4 for my kids and thought I would give it a full review for those of your looking for a compact shotgun.

Spending time out on the range and shooting with them is priceless. I wanted them to be able to share in that experience without them being punished over and over again by hard-hitting recoil. I have a lot of experience with the Winchester SX4, and I've found that it is one of the softest recoiling shotguns on the market. So I went out and found this compact 20ga SX4 at Reeds to share my thoughts with you, and find out if it's a worthy candidate to help keep my kids shooting.

The Winchester SX4 20ga Compact has an MSRP of $829 Shop the SX4 at Reeds. 

Quick Specs

  • 20 gauge 
  • 3" chamber
  • 24" Barrell (Available in 26" and 28" as well)
  • 6lbs 8oz
  • Length of Pull 13" Out of the Box (Adjustable with included spacers)
  • Drop and cast are not adjustable

Ergonomics/Look & Feel

  • Feels great in the hands, obviously a bit short for me
  • Bolt handle and bolt release operate with ease - Love these Winchester controls, much improved from the SX3


  •  5lbs 3oz Average
  • This trigger is relatively light - Little travel to it. Love the Winchester flatter-faced triggers 

Quality of Build

  • I always look at the quality of the build relative to the price. For the money, this SX4 is pretty darn good. The forearm has the slightest wiggle to it, but it's what you'd expect at this price point - still functions well above the price point.

Ease of Breakdown

  • Very simple to break down for a compact gas gun. 
  • There are a lot more moving pieces on a gas gun and this SX4 has plenty of parts
  • I prefer trigger groups with one pin to take out - this gun has two. (Very minor)


  • Of course, this is only a 20ga, but man is that recoil light. 
  • To quote my nine-year-old after he took a few shots on it - "I'd rather have a little heavier recoil if the gun itself was lighter" He was actually bothered more by the weight of the gun than the recoil.


  • I've been shooting the SX4 for many years now. This compact version is just as reliable. No issues here.

Speed Shooting

  • This is a fast lil' shootin' gun!
  • It was a bit of a challenge to get mounted up properly since the gun is way too small for me, but I was able to hit three clays in 1.23 seconds!  Not bad at all.


In summary, I loved this gun. My son did as well. The biggest conclusion that we came to is that the recoil is incredibly light, BUT, he'd be willing to take on a little bit more recoil if the weight of the gun was a bit lighter and a bit more manageable in the arms. Overall, love the SX4, love the recoil, and love that my son is able to use it out on the range with me.

Whether in the field or in life, we will only hit what we are focused on, so live the #targetfocusedlife


Stay Target Focused,


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