2 Bolt Action .22 Rifles: Savage Mk II vs. Marlin XT-22

So you’re in the market for a reasonably priced .22 Rifle.  First question:  “What are you going to use it for?”

If you are looking for an extremely accurate reasonably priced rifle for hunting small game or for pretending you are a sniper, then you should consider the Savage Mk II or the Marlin XT-22

First things first….price.

Savage MkII F Synthetic Stock with Accutrigger (more on this later) is going to run you about 180.00: http://www.savagearms.com/firearms/models/

The Marlin XT-22 Synthetic Stock with Pro-Fire Adjustable trigger (more on this later) will probably run you about 189.00:  http://www.marlinfirearms.com/Firearms/xt/XT22.asp

Model XT-22

The Savage has a 21″ barrel.  The Marlin has a 22″ barrel.  This means you may sacrifice a little portability for increased accuracy (The Ruger 10/22 has an 18.5 inch barrel and it is very accurate).  Of course there are other things that contribute to accuracy, one of the big ones however is trigger pull.

Both of these rifles offer an adjustable trigger ranging from around a 3 pd. pull to a 6 pd pull.  A lighter trigger pull lessens the likelihood that the force of your “squeeze” will move your sight picture.  The adjustable trigger will not completely make up for bad fundamentals, but add this technological innovation with the application of good trigger pull principles and you got yourself something pretty special.  The trigger feature on both of these models is a real asset particularly when it comes to hunting and/or impressing your friends with your decimation of a empty beer can from 225 yards away.

Both rifles come with sling mounts, a feature often and unfortunately overlooked when considering the purchase of a rifle.  The proper use of a sling can greatly increase your accuracy when shooting from various positions: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G3Y67Jkfu48  Also, the sling mount make it easy to add a bipod.  A modification that is worth the cost just for getting your rifle zeroed.

Both rifles are magazine fed (Marlin also has a tube fed model XT-22R).  The Savage magazine will hold ten rounds.  The Marlin mag will hold 7

There is a whole lot more that can be said about each of these rifles.  Both Marlin and Savage are industry standards when it comes to firearms production and they’ve both been around quite sometime.  It’s hard to imagine anyone not being pleased with the purchase of either one of these fine weapons, in fact I’ve yet to read/watch a negative review of either.

I’d probably give the Savage the slight edge, just because the Mk II with the Acutrigger has been around for several years, where as the Marlin XT-22 Pro-Fire Trigger just came out in 2011 (The XT is basically the Marlin 925 with the Pro-Fire Adjustable Trigger).  But again it’s hard to go wrong with either one.  The best thing to do would be to find a retailer and hold each rifle in your hands for a while and let em speak to you….you’ll know what to do.


32 Responses to “2 Bolt Action .22 Rifles: Savage Mk II vs. Marlin XT-22”

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  7. I have recently purchased the Marlin XT-22 and am very impressed. The action is a little stiff but after a couple bricks of federal it is now as smooth as glass. Marlin or Savage you can’t go wrong but since your shooting a bolt action you might as well get the rifle with the longer barrel and microgrooves (Marlin). Great review.

    • I’m glad to hear some good feedback on the XT, not that I’ve heard anything negative.

      I take it you are liking the pro-fire trigger. They are pretty sweet.

    • savage 2 is also micro grooved the barrel is also button checked, my son has a marlin cracking little gun but for me personaly i prefer the savage, i find the bolt a lot smother

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  9. John Norris Says:

    I own a Marlin XT22 with a wood stock. I used to have a Savage Mark II F with a syntetic stock. In terms of accuracy, they both seem to perform equally. For me, Marlin did a much better job with balancing their gun. To me the Savage felt front-heavy.

  10. Dave Dziurawiec Says:

    Recently purchased a Marlin XT22 tube fed with synthetic stock. Have used it with a Barska scope and sling mounted bipod about 3 times since sighting it in. Nice and accurate. Flipping the bipod open today, the sling mount broke. After searching the web, this is not an isolated case with the synthetic stock.

    • pezmuttinsky@hotmail.com Says:

      My sling mount broke the first day I got it.. extended the bipod and it broke right off. Very unhappy

    • Hi, I also have the same gun you do and would be willing to sell you my syn stock. call me at 920 733 3976 if anyone is interested. Thanks

  11. Dan da man Says:

    I have an XT-22 with the wood stock. I also have an old Marlin Glenfield Model 25, which is a fine old .22 bolt action, but the XT-22 beats it hands down, mainly due to the Pro Trigger. It’s the best trigger I’ve felt in an out-of-the box plinking rifle.

  12. Anonymous Says:

    I have Savage mk2 with accutrigger. It’s ok, only goes to 3 1/2 lb pull though. It’s supposed to go to 2 1/2. The Marlin xt22tr with the pro fire trigger sucks beans. It only goes from 7 down to 5 lb pull. Savage said send em back on my dime they will take a look. Marlin said that’s the way it is, sorry charlie.

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  15. Anonymous Says:

    Thank you for the good review!

  16. I own both rifles and personaly i prefer the marlin over the savage. The savage mark 2 felt too front heavy while the marlin xt 22r felt even. but they are both great guns.

  17. I also have the marlin xt22 in a syn stock that i would like to sell if anyone is interested., here’s my number920 733 3976, thanks.

  18. the front heavy is supposed to help accuracy

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