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The Official Byrna LE Launcher Review

The Byrna LE Launcher is truly the best less lethal launcher option on the market today. It was imperative that we get our hands on it for a full review to give you insight as to why it’s considered the best by thousands of people around the world opting for a non-lethal approach to personal defense and training.

Developed by Byrna, an innovator in the less lethal industry, the Byrna LE Launcher provides an extraordinary experience with incredible power, precision, and handling, alongside an appearance that’s just as impressive. In this Byrna LE Launcher Review, we explore the appearance, features, performance, shooting experience, reliability, pricing, and overall user experience of this fascinating less-lethal launcher.

Byrna LE Launcher Key Features:

  1. Design and Construction: The Byrna LE Launcher sports a realistic design, giving it the look of a “law enforcement” pistol. It has the most pleasing appearance compared to all other less lethal launcher brands. Similar to its design, the construction is rather impressive as well, as it features a range of quality materials throughout.
  2. Caliber and Projectiles: The Byrna LE Launcher accepts .68 caliber projectiles that can be launched to reach accurate distances of up to 80 feet at 340 feet per second. The kit includes several 5-count projectile options, including Pepper, Kinetic, and Eco-Kinetic projectiles.
  3. 12-Gram CO2 Powered: The Byrna LE Launcher is powered by a single 12 Gram CO2 Cylinder, earning it excellent shot capacity, standoff distance, and power. The LE has a 40% greater shot capacity and a 33% increased effective range over the previous SD model.
  4. Pull-Pierce Technology: The Byrna LE Launcher offers a game-changing feature that is beyond its competitors, patented pull-pierce technology. The single 12 Gram CO2 cylinder is stored in the launcher and isn’t punctured until the first trigger pull.
  5. Super-Charged Power: The Byrna LE Launcher is extraordinarily powerful, delivering max projectile speeds of 340 feet per second. It’s a power you can see, feel, and hear from the first pull of the trigger. The LE is 60% more powerful than the previous SD model.

Appearance

The Byrna LE Launcher is visually pleasing from top to bottom. Referred to as the Byrna “Law Enforcement” Launcher, its name suits it well since it boasts a realistic design that mimics what you could imagine a law enforcement agent would carry, yet more modern and tactical. From the ergonomic grip that features a rubberized inlay to the upgraded white dot sights that offer high contrast to the wide muzzle that is an indication of a large projectile, the appearance is certainly impressive, to say the least.

Byrna LE White Dot Sights

*While the overall appearance is pleasing, the “Byrna Boost” barrel and CO2 storage extension makes the Byrna LE Launcher less attractive than it can be. Although the addition significantly improves its shot capacity, standoff distance, and projectile speeds, along with giving it a more tactical look, its extended length and the fact that it’s a mere extension of its previous model make it suffer when it comes to the appearance of its overall quality.

Features

Feature-packed, the Byrna LE has a lot to offer when compared to other launchers on the market, including its predecessors. We’ve gone ahead and published a detailed Byrna Gun Comparison so you have more insight into the differences between the three options from the brand. From the tactical rail that allows you to combine it with various accessories to the patented pull-pierce technology that simultaneously punctures the cylinder and launches the projectile, the Byrna LE Launcher truly exceeds expectations.

The Byrna LE’s most notable feature, and what really sold us, was the brand’s patented pull-pierce technology. Having a launcher that isn’t waiting fully loaded and instantly charged with a fresh CO2 cylinder is an unreliable product for real-world self-defense scenarios. However, having a launcher that is ready and waiting for action at a moment’s notice when needed is invaluable.

The pull-pierce technology that Byrna has developed allows the CO2 cylinder to rest just beneath the muzzle in a separate CO2 storage compartment. It is stored in the launcher, unpunctured, and when it’s needed, a pull of the trigger simultaneously punctures the cylinder and launches the projectile. Optionally, you’re able to dial the safety switch to the “SAFE” position, and pull the trigger, puncturing the cylinder without launching a projectile. It’s a very versatile feature that the product possesses.

Alongside its incredible pull-pierce technology, the Byrna LE Launcher comes packed with a slew of additional features that make it stand out. It sports an accessories rail that allows you to easily equip lights, lasers, or a combination of the two. It also comes equipped with the “Byrna Boost” to house a single 12 Gram CO2 cylinder capable of 35 shots each (40% greater shot capacity over the SD model).

And, it features upgraded white dot sights for high contrast and accurate targeting. Additionally, the LE model boasts a redesigned trigger interface that allows for smoother and lighter pulls compared to previous models, a smooth rubber inlay on the grip, a 7-round magazine, and a safety switch that is ‘clicky’ and stays in position.

Byrna LE Magazine Wiggle

*An issue as far as its quality that we would like to bring to potential customers’ attention is the 7-round magazine. It’s very loose and does not stay seated perfectly in the magazine well. Instead, it hangs down and raddles, indicating a manufacturing issue, poor design, or low-quality detachable box magazine.

Performance

When it comes to the performance of the Byrna LE, nothing is more satisfying than the power you receive from this compact less lethal launcher. The launcher performs extremely well, delivering the power, speeds, accuracy, and standoff distance that you deserve as your EDC (Everyday Carry). The LE launcher has max projectile speeds of 340 feet per second, producing great power and delivering a hard hit to your intended target. It has incredible standoff distance, with noticeable accuracy at up to 80 feet. The LE model is 60% more powerful and 33% increased effective range over the previous SD model.

Shooting Experience

Shooting the Byrna LE Launcher feels as close to realistic as you can get from less lethal launchers. It delivers a light, yet very noticeable recoil kick after pulling the trigger and launching a projectile. The upgraded trigger interface gives the trigger a smooth and light trigger pull, making the launcher very comfortable to use when shooting. And, each time a .68 caliber projectile is launched from the large barrel, you notice its power, speed, accuracy, and standoff distance.

Byrna LE No Fire

*Unfortunately, during our time using the Byrna LE Launcher, we noticed some issues that affected both our shooting experience and the overall reliability of the product. While shooting, the launcher would not fire nor launch a projectile at random. While I would like to blame the issue on incompatible projectiles, we believe the CO2 cylinder would still expel, launch the projectile, or at least make a noise. Instead, the trigger just clicks, as if there wasn’t a CO2 cylinder or projectile present. We believe this is an issue that may be caused by the detachable box magazine, which we state that we had issues with earlier in this review.

Byrna LE Dropped Magazine

*Another concerning issue we run into is that while shooting, mistakably pressing the magazine release button is common. If you hold the launcher the way you’re supposed to properly hold a pistol, you’ll accidentally press the magazine release button. As a result, the magazine suddenly drops onto the ground while aiming or shooting. We believe the magazine release button is far too sensitive.

Reliability

The patented pull-pierce technology developed by Byrna is what makes this launcher so reliable. Knowing that the pistol is always ready, not having fear of leaving a cylinder stored, and ensuring it’s always loaded and charged is a feature that we cannot praise enough.

*However, the fact that the launcher doesn’t always “fire” or launch projectiles at random, and the magazine can simply drop at any time from just the placement of your hands leads to unreliable and dangerous circumstances during real-world encounters.

Note: We will be contacting Byrna support and looking for ways to eliminate these issues. If we’re able to come to a resolution, we’ll update this review in the future on how we were treated, how supportive the brand is, and what it took to come to a resolution on the matter.

8/15/2023 – Update
  • August 11, 2023: The initial contact was made with Byrna Customer Service via email regarding both firing and magazine issues on August 11, 2023.
  • August 11, 2023: The Byrna Customer Service representative responded by requesting a video of the issues.
  • August 13, 2023: The requested video demonstrating the issue was submitted via email.
  • August 14, 2023: The Byrna Customer Service representative requested a second video demonstrating the issues with Byrna Kinetic Projectiles. In the response, the representative also included that if the issue persists in the second video, they’ll replace the launcher with a new one.
8/18/2023 – Update

  • A second video was submitted to Byrna Customer Service on August 17, 2023.
  • Byrna Customer Service responded with an RMA to return the Byrna to be replaced on August 18, 2023.
8/22/2023 – Update
  • Byrna confirmed they’ve received the returned product. During testing, they were able to recreate the misfiring issue. The issue was caused by the trigger connection plate, which connects the trigger to the firing mechanism.
  • During this time, Byrna also confirmed that a brand-new replacement LE launcher would be shipped soon.
8/23/2023 – Update
  • Notification received, indicating that the Byrna LE Launcher has been shipped and will arrive in 2 days’ time.

The customer service experience I received with Byrna has been incredible. The representative I spoke with responded immediately, then provided information, along with a request to see the issue for themselves. After providing a video of the issue, the representative shared a fix to see if the issue could be recreated. With a request for a second video demonstrating if the issue could be recreated or not, the representative shared that the launcher would be replaced if the issue persists. After providing the second video and showing that the issue could be recreated, an RMA was immediately sent out to be replaced.

My experience was completely legit. The representative didn’t know I was tied to a blog, would be publishing a review, or sharing my customer service experience with the rest of the world. I was treated with respect, the brand was very supportive throughout the process, and after a couple of videos demonstrating the issues, Byrna will now replace the defective product. Byrna has certainly earned my business as a repeat customer. (Thank you, Maria and Jordan!)

Pricing

Some may find the price of the Byrna LE Launcher to be extremely high, especially when so many other products on the market are much cheaper. When it comes to our opinion and our personal budget, we feel that the price is certainly justified for the product you receive. For the most part, you’re getting a quality product that is aesthetically pleasing, delivers great power, and is incredibly convenient.

You want what you want, and we wanted the Byrna LE, therefore we paid the asking price with no hesitation. Would we do it all over again? Absolutely, and we plan on it! As far as our rating, to stay fair we’ve deducted some points because the Byrna LE is on the higher end of the pricing spectrum compared to other less lethal pistol options on the market.

Overall User Experience

Although during our experience, we faced a few incidents and still have kinks to work out, we’re still more than pleased with our purchase. We’re also pleased with the overall experience of using the product. There are just features that the Byrna LE Launcher has that no other brand offers and its appearance is far greater than any other, in our opinion. We also really like Byrna’s marketing efforts, who they’re marketing to, and their professionalism. Having a company that “gets it” and that you can rely on truly brings peace of mind.

The Byrna LE Launcher Kit

Byrna LE Launcher Kit

The Byrna LE Launcher Kit includes the following items:

  • 1 x Byrna LE Launcher Pistol
  • 1 x Byrna Branded EVA Travel / Storage Case
  • 1 x 5-Count Pepper Projectiles
  • 1 x 5-Count Kinetic Projectiles
  • 1 x 5-Count Eco-Kinetic Projectiles
  • 2 x 7-Round Magazines
  • 2 x 12g CO2 Cylinders
9Expert Score
Byrna LE Launcher

The Byrna LE Launcher is a remarkable launcher and our review reflects that. Though it isn’t perfect, it’s extremely close, making us very satisfied with our purchase. From its many features to the solid performance it offers, we consider it to be one of the best options on the market.

Appearance
9
Features
10
Performance
10
Shooting Experience
8.5
Reliability
8.5
Price
8
Overall User Experience
9
PROS
  • Best Overall Design and Construction
  • Patented Pull-Pierce Technology
  • 12-Gram CO2 Cylinder (35 Rounds Each)
  • No CO2 Leaks After Puncture
  • Quality Safety Switch
  • Very Powerful (340 Feet Per Second)
  • Precise Shots (Accurate At Up To 80 Feet)
  • 7-Round Magazine (Includes Extra Mag)
CONS
  • "Byrna Boost" Makes It Less Attractive
  • Magazine Release Is Too Sensitive
  • Possibly lacks Compatibility With Other Projectiles
  • Can Be Unreliable At Times
  • Magazine Is Loose / Low Quality
The Official Byrna LE Launcher Review - Less Lethal Army
Byrna LE Launcher Review

The Byrna LE Launcher is truly the best less lethal launcher option on the market today. It was imperative that we get our hands on it for a full review to give you insight as to why it's considered the best by thousands of people around the world opting for a non-lethal approach to personal defense and training.

Product Brand: Byrna

Editor's Rating:
9

Pros

  • Best Overall Design and Construction
  • Patented Pull-Pierce Technology
  • 12-Gram CO2 Cylinder (35 Rounds Each)
  • No CO2 Leaks After Puncture
  • Quality Safety Switch
  • Very Powerful (340 Feet Per Second)
  • Precise Shots (Accurate At Up To 80 Feet)
  • 7-Round Magazine (Includes Extra Mag)

Cons

  • Byrna Boost Makes It Less Attractive
  • Magazine Release Is Too Sensitive
  • Possibly lacks Compatibility With Other Projectiles
  • Can Be Unreliable At Times
  • Magazine Is Loose / Low Quality
The Official Byrna LE Launcher Review
The Official Byrna LE Launcher Review

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