AR-15 Triggers – The Top 10 AR-15 Triggers in 2024

AR-15 Triggers

We recently set out to deterimine our picks for the top 10 AR-15 triggers in 2024. Making a list like this is a bit more challenging that you might think. To assist Dirty Bird Guns and Ammo, we reached out to our sister company, for an assist. The quest for the top AR-15 trigger is akin to seeking out the perfect car; the best choice varies widely based on personal needs and preferences. Triggers, like cars, are designed with specific functions in mind—some prioritize precision for competitive shooting, while others emphasize durability for tactical use.

Regardless of whether you’re a competitive shooter, hunter, or enjoy shooting recreationally, or building a rifle for home defense, selecting the right trigger can significantly enhance your shooting experience, mirroring the journey of finding the perfect car for every driver’s unique needs.

Today’s market is flooded with a broad and diverse range of AR-15 triggers, making the selection process seem daunting. While the best way to find your ideal trigger would be to personally test each option, budgetary and logistical constraints often make this impractical. However, understanding the different types of triggers can help narrow down your choices.

AR-15 Triggers

Top AR-15 Triggers – Why Trust Us?

At Dirty Bird Guns and Ammo, our proficiency in AR-15 triggers stems from our deep immersion in the market. As a premier retailer, we go beyond merely offering an extensive range of triggers; we actively gather comprehensive feedback from a diverse community of shooters. This feedback, coupled with insights from manufacturers, ensures we stay abreast of the latest trigger technologies and their practical effectiveness. Positioned at the forefront of retail, we possess a distinct vantage point on which triggers excel across various shooting endeavors. Grounded in genuine customer experiences and technical acumen, our knowledge establishes us as a reliable authority for those seeking to enhance their AR-15 trigger.

Understanding AR-15 Trigger Types

To streamline the extensive array, we can classify AR-15 triggers into several main categories: Mil-Spec, Cassette, Single Stage, and Two-Stage.

AR-15 Mil-Spec Triggers: The Reliable Standard

Mil-Spec triggers are the go-to for duty and defensive use, designed for consistency, reliability, and ease of maintenance. These single stage AR-15 triggers haracterized by their separate hammer and trigger components and a pull weight ranging from 5.5 to 8.5 pounds, they strike a balance between safety and performance. These triggers can be serviced in the field with minimal tools, making them a practical choice for situations where reliability is paramount. Despite their standardization, there’s still room for customization in terms of control, breakpoint, and trigger shape, allowing for a personalized shooting experience.

Not all Mil-Spec triggers are equal. We like the Dirty Bird Single Stage Nickel Teflon Trigger Group.

AR-15 Cassette Triggers: The Competitive Choice

For those in the competitive shooting arena, cassette triggers are a popular choice due to their lighter pull weight and minimal pre-travel, allowing for rapid and smooth trigger pulls. Their adjustability and quick resets enhance performance in competitions. However, the lighter pull weight and the necessity for anti-walk pins due to lighter hammer springs introduce considerations for those using their firearms for defensive purposes, where unintentional discharges could pose a significant risk. Maintenance and adjustments of cassette triggers require specialized tools and knowledge, potentially complicating their use in non-competitive contexts.

Cassette-style triggers – Dirty Bird AR-15 Single Stage Quick Reset Drop-In Triggers

Single-Stage AR-15 Triggers

Single-stage triggers are the most common triggers to come across and are used in many other firearms across the world. The Mil-Spec AR-15 triggers we talked about above are simple examples of what a single-stage trigger is. As such, you have most likely used one of these, once in your life. Single stage triggers will have virtually no over-travel and will have a consistent and clean break.

Typically, single-stage AR-15 triggers have a lighter pull weight. You will usually see anywhere from 3-4 pound pull weights on single-stage triggers. This is why they are great options when it comes to accuracy-drive pursuits, such as competition shooting.

Curved and flat single stage triggers from Rise Armament.

Two-Stage AR-15 Triggers: Precision’s Best Friend

Two stage AR-15 triggers have become increasingly popular over the last several years. They are very useful in hunting situations and are often used in the military and law enforcement communities. Two-stage triggers are preferred by many for their precision and control, especially in long-distance shooting. This type of trigger requires the shooter to pull through an initial, lighter stage until hitting a defined stop point, at which further pressure releases the hammer. This allows for a heightened sense of control and predictability, which is invaluable in precision shooting scenarios.

Models like the Knight’s Armament SR-15’s match trigger and the Geissele SSA exemplify the best of what two-stage AR-15 triggers offer. They’re not only excellent for experienced shooters but also serve as effective tools for teaching new enthusiasts about trigger discipline and control.

Choosing Your Ideal AR-15 Trigger

Selecting the right AR-15 trigger is a personal journey that should consider your shooting style, the firearm’s purpose, and your individual preferences. Whether you value the reliability and consistency of Mil-Spec triggers, the precision control of two-stage AR-15 triggers, or the competitive edge offered by cassette triggers, there’s a perfect match out there for every shooter. Just as with finding the perfect car, the key is to prioritize what matters most to you and explore the options within those parameters. With that said, let’s take a look at what we think are the best AR-15 triggers are on the market today

Top AR-15 Triggers in 2024

Best 2-Stage Duty AR-15 Trigger

Geissele SSA-E
The SSA-E was designed to be used in marksman situations where accuracy is of the upmost importance. The SSA-E has enhanced trigger control while still maintaining its robustness. The SSA-E features a reduced pull weight for the first stage and a crisp and very light second stage.

Geissele Super Semi-Automatic Enhanced (SSA-E) Trigger

Dirty Bird 2-Stage Trigger Group
In terms of build quality, this trigger is every bit as reliable as entry level 2-stage trigger offerings like the LaRue MBT and the Geissele G2S.  The trigger has positive reset and a clean, crisp pull. As far as grit and feel, it’s remarkably smooth. It’s an American-made trigger that was put together using  top-notch materials. The trigger also comes with a Dirty Bird Extra Power 2-Stage Trigger Spring to add weight to those who might want a heavier first stage feel which more closely matches a first stage pull found in popular 2-stage trigger offerings from Geissele and LaRue.

Top AR-15 Triggers
Dirty Bird 2-Stage Trigger Group 

Top Competition AR-15 Triggers

Hiperfire HIPERTOUCH Competition
The Hiperfire HIPERTOUCH Competition AR Trigger stands as a pinnacle of precision and performance, meticulously crafted to exceed the rigorous standards of 3-gunners, the most demanding audience in competitive shooting. Engineered with a focus on responsiveness and control, this trigger offers a crisp break and minimal overtravel, essential for achieving rapid and accurate shots in the fast-paced environment of 3-gun competitions. Its proven track record with seasoned 3-gunners underscores its reliability and effectiveness, empowering shooters to push the boundaries of their performance and dominate on the range.

Dirty Bird AR-15 Single Stage Quick Reset Drop-In Trigger
The Dirty Bird AR-15 Single Stage Quick Reset Drop-In Trigger is your top pick for any AR-15 build, offering unmatched performance and reliability. Crafted from aerospace-grade steel and aluminum, it features a 3.5-pound trigger pull with minimal take-up and lightning-fast reset. Its easy installation and compatibility with various lower receivers make it a breeze to upgrade your rifle. With a sleek design and exceptional features like a comfortable flat/curved trigger blade and black nitride finished interior parts, the Dirty Bird AR-15 trigger elevates your shooting experience to new heights.

Dirty Bird AR-15 Single Stage Quick Reset Drop-In Triggers

Most Affordable Drop In AR-15 Triggers

Rise Armament AR-15 Rave 140 Trigger
The Rise Armament RAVE 140 Super Sporting Trigger, also known as the “Black Fallout,” earns its reputation as AR15Discounts’ top pick for the most affordable drop-in trigger. Crafted with precision from aerospace-grade steel and aluminum, each RA-140 undergoes strict quality checks, ensuring reliability. With a 3.5-pound trigger pull, minimal take-up, crisp break, and short reset, it’s a favorite among competitors, target shooters, and hunters. Encased in a 6061 aluminum enclosure for easy installation and including anti-walk pins, the RAVE 140 offers unbeatable performance at an affordable price point.

Rise Armament RAVE 140 Drop-in Trigger

Dirty Bird AR-15 Single Stage Quick Reset Drop-In Trigger
The Dirty Bird AR-15 Single Stage Quick Reset Drop-In Trigger is a top performing trigger but also supremely affordable, making it the perfect choice for any AR-15. Forged from aerospace-grade steel and aluminum, this trigger boasts a 3.5-pound pull weight with minimal take-up and an ultra-fast reset, competing with pricier alternatives on the market. Despite its budget-friendly cost, it doesn’t skimp on quality, showcasing a stylish design and premium features such as a comfortable flat/curved trigger blade and black nitride finished interior components for added resilience. Simple installation and compatibility with a range of lower receivers guarantee a seamless rifle upgrade without denting your wallet. With the Dirty Bird Trigger, affordability merges with unparalleled performance, delivering shooters exceptional bang for their buck.

Top Budget AR-15 Triggers

Larue MBT-2S
The LaRue Tactical MBT-2S AR-15 Trigger is hailed by many as the finest trigger available, bar none. Precision-crafted from S7 Tool Steel using meticulous machining, this trigger guarantees unmatched consistency and durability, ideal for both competitive shooting and tactical applications. With a crisp 4.5-pound break (2.5-pound first stage, 2-pound second stage) and a smooth, definitive reset, the MBT-2S ensures dependable performance with each shot. Furthermore, each trigger package includes an additional “heavy” trigger spring, enabling users to adjust the pull weight up to 6 pounds for added versatility. Proudly manufactured in-house in Texas, USA, this trigger is a straightforward yet potent means to enhance the performance of your AR-15 platform. Note: Compatible exclusively with Small Pin Lower Receivers.

LaRue Tactical MBT-2S AR-15 Trigger

Dirty Bird 2-Stage Trigger Group
The Dirty Bird 2-Stage Trigger Group earns our nod as the runner-up for outstanding value, delivering exceptional reliability and performance at an unmatched price. On par with entry-level 2-stage trigger options such as the LaRue MBT and the Geissele G2S in terms of construction quality, this trigger ensures a crisp pull and a positive reset. Its impressively smooth operation reflects its American-made precision and premium-grade materials. Furthermore, the inclusion of the Dirty Bird Extra Power 2-Stage Trigger Spring allows for customization, offering a heavier first stage akin to popular offerings from Geissele and LaRue. Tailored for hard-use firearms where reliability reigns supreme, the 2-stage design provides distinct advantages, including heightened control and predictability, making it a trigger you can confidently rely on.

Looking for the top AR-15 triggers? Don’t make a purchase until you’ve read the overview of the Dirty Bird 2-Stage Trigger.

Top Mil-Spec Trigger

Dirty Bird Nickel Teflon Trigger
For those seeking the pinnacle of mil-spec trigger excellence, look no further than the Dirty Bird Single Stage Nickel Teflon Trigger Group . While mil-spec triggers are renowned for their reliability and affordability, not all are created equal. Many suffer from heavy pulls and gritty take-ups, posing challenges for precision shooting. Introducing the Dirty Bird Single Stage Trigger Group, meticulously crafted with honed and polished engagement surfaces and a slick, durable Nickel Teflon finish. Engineered with finely tuned spring rates for both trigger and hammer, shooters experience a smooth pull with minimal take-up and a crisp, clean break at 5 – 5.5 pounds. Proudly made in the USA and backed by the Dirty Bird Limited Lifetime Warranty, this trigger group offers unrivaled reliability and performance, taking your shooting experience to unparalleled heights. Plus, it now includes the Dirty Bird Industries AR-15 Trigger Reduced Power Spring Set for enhanced customization and versatility.

Dirty Bird Single Stage Nickel Teflon Trigger Group

ALG ACT AR-15 Combat Trigger
The ALG Defense Advanced Combat Trigger (ACT) provides a classic mil-spec sensation with upgraded performance. While preserving traditional reliability, it eradicates any grittiness and refines the pull. Its pull weight adheres to M4/M16 specifications at 5.5lbs, guaranteeing compliance. The package includes both reduced-power and full-power hammer springs for tailored adjustments. Precision-crafted from military-grade materials, the ACT delivers a smoother, crisper trigger pull, outclassing standard triggers.

Top AR-15 Triggers – Conclusion

It’s essential to recognize that while we aim to offer top recommendations, triggers aren’t one-size-fits-all solutions. Our picks are carefully curated based on our vast experience and knowledge in the industry. If you have any inquiries or require additional guidance in selecting the ideal trigger for your requirements, feel free to contact us at Dirty Bird Guns & Ammo. Our team is dedicated to providing tailored assistance to help you discover the optimal fit for your firearm.

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