The best 5.56 upper is not just one thing. It’s a combination of factors that work together to make the perfect shooting experience for you. Whether you’re looking for accuracy, reliability, or durability, there are many different uppers on the market to choose from. In this article, we’ll break down what to look for when choosing your next 5.56 upper and give you our top five recommendations. So whether you’re a seasoned shooter or just starting out, read on to find the perfect upper for your needs!
Table of Contents
- Best 5.56 Upper Review
- #1 Daniel Defense DDM4V7 Complete Upper Receiver
- #2 Daniel Defense MK18 Complete Upper Receiver
- #3 OpticsPlanet Exclusive Daniel Defense Custom Upper Receiver
- #4 Aero Precision Rifle Barrel Complete Upper Receiver
- #5 Aero Precision M4E1 Complete Upper Receiver
- #6 Stag Arms AR-15 Stag 15 Tactical Upper Receiver
- #7 Geissele Usasoc AR15/M4/M16 Upper Receiver Stripped Group
- #8 Geissele Usasoc AR15 Super Duty Nano Complete Upper Receiver
- #9 Radical Firearms SOCOM Upper Assembly
- #10 Radical Firearms Upper Assembly
- #11 Ghost Firearms Elite Complete Upper Receiver
- #12 Griffin Armament MK1 RECCE 5.56mm 16 inch Upper
- #13 Griffin Armament MK1 CQB 5.56mm 11.5 inch Upper
- #14 POF USA Complete P-415 Edge Upper Receiver
- #15 S&W 812011 M&P15 Complete AR-15 Upper
- #16 ArmaLite M15 11.5in Law Enforcement Carbine Complete Upper Receiver
- #17 Colt Mfg LE6920CK Upper Receiver Conversion Kit
- #18 Colt AR-15 LE6960-CCU Upper ReceiverR 5.56 M-LOK
- #19 Sons of Liberty Gun Works AR-15 Sage Dynamics Upper Receiver Assembly
Best 5.56 Upper Review
#1 Daniel Defense DDM4V7 Complete Upper Receiver
The Daniel Defense DDM4V7 Complete Upper Receiver is a top-of-the-line choice for anyone looking for a high-quality, reliable upper receiver for their AR-15. This system features a Cold Hammer Forged 16″ Lightweight profile barrel that is two ounces lighter than a standard V7 barrel, making it perfect for those who want a lighter gun without sacrificing performance. Additionally, the DD improved Flash Suppressor helps to reduce flash signature, while the mid-length gas system ensures smooth, reliable cycling and reduced wear on moving parts. The free-floating MFR 15.0 handguard also provides incredible weight savings as well as superior cooling, ergonomics, and modularity. Plus, with M-LOK attachment points along 7 positions and an uninterrupted 1913 Picatinny rail on top, this upper receiver has plenty of room for sights, optics, and other accessories. And best of all, the new independent Ambi GRIP-N-RIP Charging Handle works with both left and right-handed shooters. So whether you’re a serious competitive shooter or just looking for a great upper receiver for your next plinking session, the Daniel Defense DDM4V7 Complete Upper Receiver is a perfect choice.
#2 Daniel Defense MK18 Complete Upper Receiver
Looking for a high-quality, complete upper receiver for your AR15? Look no further than the Daniel Defense MK18! Every upper receiver is hand-assembled and quality assurance tested to ensure that you’re getting the best possible product. The MK18 comes with a bolt carrier group and charging handle, a 10.3″ Cold Hammer Forged Barrel, RIS II MK18 Rail System in Black or Flat Dark Earth, and Daniel Defense low profile gas block. With a Mil-Spec upper receiver and CNC Machined 7075-T6 Aluminum construction, this upper receiver is built to last. Don’t settle for anything less than the best – grab a Daniel Defense MK18 today!
#3 OpticsPlanet Exclusive Daniel Defense Custom Upper Receiver
The OpticsPlanet Exclusive Daniel Defense Custom Upper Receiver is perfect for your next AR build. The upper receiver is mil-spec with indexing marks and M4 feed ramps and is CNC machined of 7075-T6 aluminium. It also features a type III hard coat anodized finish. The barrel is made of chrome moly vanadium steel and is a cold hammer forged with a 1:7 twist. It has a 14.5″ government profile and a mid-length gas system. The gas block is pinned low profile and CNC machined of 4140 hardened steel. The muzzle device is pinned and welded, and the bolt carrier group is mil-spec MP-tested with a chrome-lined interior. This upper receiver also comes with a Daniel Defense MFR 13.5″ handguard, which is CNC machined of 6061-T6 aluminium and features M-LOK attachment points. It also has a type III hard coat anodized finish in Milspec+ Cerakote.
#4 Aero Precision Rifle Barrel Complete Upper Receiver
If you want a top-of-the-line upper receiver for your next AR builds, then get the Aero Precision Rifle Barrel Complete Upper Receiver. Forged from 7075 T6 aluminium and precision machined to M4E1 specs, this upper receiver is built to last. It features M4 feed ramps, a matte black hard coat anodized finish, laser engraved T-marks, and comes assembled with a port door and forward assist installed. Additionally, the handguard mounting platform is forged into the receiver for a rock-solid installation. The 1pc free float design with scalloped rails provides a continuous top rail perfect for mounting optics and other accessories. It’s compatible with most low-profile gas blocks and has quick disconnect sling sockets at the 3, 6, and 9 o’clock positions. Plus, the additional milling along the flats aids with gripping and adds visual appeal. Give your AR the upgrade it deserves with the Aero Precision Rifle Barrel Complete Upper Receiver.
#5 Aero Precision M4E1 Complete Upper Receiver
The Aero Precision M4E1 Complete Upper Receiver is a perfect addition to your AR-15 build. The receiver is forged from 7075-T6 aluminium and features laser-engraved T-marks. It comes with the port door and forward assist installed, and has a handguard mounting platform that is forged into the receiver. The M4E1 works with Aero Precision handguards but also fits most BAR-system handguards. It has built-in anti-rotation tabs, scalloped rails, and a continuous top rail. The inside diameter of 1.78″ fits most muzzle devices and 1.5″ suppressors. The M4E1 is compatible with low-profile gas blocks and has a .0785 gas port. It is HP and MPI tested.
#6 Stag Arms AR-15 Stag 15 Tactical Upper Receiver
The Stag Arms AR-15 Stag 15 Tactical Upper Receiver is a high-quality, durable upper receiver that is perfect for your tactical needs. Outfitted with a lightweight free float 13.5″ M-LOK handguard, this upper receiver is perfect for attaching your favourite accessories. The 5.56x45mm NATO chamber 16″ 1/7 chrome lined barrel provides superior accuracy and reliability, while the A2 birdcage flash hider ensures optimal visibility in any situation. With its low-profile gas block and forged and Mil-Spec 7075 T6 aluminium construction, the Stag 15 Tactical Upper Receiver is sure to provide years of reliable service.
#7 Geissele Usasoc AR15/M4/M16 Upper Receiver Stripped Group
The Geissele Usasoc AR15/M4/M16 Upper Receiver Stripped Group is the perfect addition to your AR-15 collection. This top-of-the-line upper receiver group comes with a hammer-forged barrel and mid-length gas system that work together to provide you with increased accuracy and reliability. The Super Modular Rail MK 16 handguard completes the package, giving you a sight picture that is sure to give you an edge over the competition.
#8 Geissele Usasoc AR15 Super Duty Nano Complete Upper Receiver
Looking for a top-of-the-line AR15 upper receiver? Check out the Geissele Usasoc AR15 Super Duty Nano Complete Upper Receiver. This bad boy comes with all the bells and whistles, including a Surefire Closed-Tine Flash Hider, Geissele’s Super Modular Rail M-LOK handguard, and their ambidextrous Airborne charging handle. The best part? The Super Duty Upper Receiver has Geissele’s Reliability Enhanced Bolt Carrier Group (BCG), which is machined from extra-hard 8620 carbon steel with extended upper rails to ensure ultra-reliable feeding. So if you’re looking for an AR15 upper receiver that won’t let you down, go with the Geissele Usasoc AR15 Super Duty Nano Complete Upper Receiver.
#9 Radical Firearms SOCOM Upper Assembly
If you’re looking for law enforcement grade quality, then you need to check out the Radical Firearms 16 in. 5.56 SOCOM Upper Assembly. These AR15 Upper Receivers are crafted by Radical Firearms and are easy to install with their drop-in installation. With the RF 16in 5.56mm SOCOM Radical Rail Upper Assembly, you get full customization of attachments with the integrated Keymod attachment points on the sides and bottom as well as the Picatinny rails on the fore-end which let you mount lights, optics, lasers, bipods, and other accessories as you please. This assembly kit includes everything you need to complete your AR platform upper receiver except the bolt carrier group and charging handle which are available separately. So if you’re looking to enhance your firearm with premium gun parts, then don’t hesitate to incorporate the Radical Firearms SOCOM Upper Assembly into your weapon!
#10 Radical Firearms Upper Assembly
Check out the Radical Firearms Upper Assembly 7.5 inch 5.56 M4 Contour. This top-of-the-line upper assembly is specifically designed for competitive shooters, featuring a slim rail system and a 7.5-inch barrel for increased precision and accuracy. The M4 contouring provides a comfortable grip and enhanced control, while the A2 flash hider ensures reduced muzzle flash. With its black matte finish, this upper assembly also looks great in any setup. So don’t miss your chance to take your shooting to the next level – get the Radical Firearms Upper Assembly today!
#11 Ghost Firearms Elite Complete Upper Receiver
With the Ghost Firearms Elite Complete Upper Receiver, you’ll have a battle-ready and reliable upper receiver for your AR build. This Mil-Spec receiver is machined from 7075 T6 aluminium for superior durability, yet it won’t weigh you down in the field. The 4150 steel M4 barrel is nitride-finished for optimum performance and maximum resistance to corrosion and abrasion. Plus, you get an M-LOK-free float handguard for enhanced stability and precision. Give your gun the strength and reliability it needs with the Ghost Firearms Elite Complete Upper Receiver.
#12 Griffin Armament MK1 RECCE 5.56mm 16 inch Upper
The Griffin Armament MK1 RECCE 5.56mm 16-inch Upper is the best choice for anyone looking for an ultra-light, low profile and ultra-rigid upper for their AR platform! This top-of-the-line upper is designed to provide enhanced accuracy and shooting experience for any enthusiasts or competitive shooters. Featuring M-LOK slots that can be positioned to perfectly secure laser sights, red dot sights or any other accessories, the Griffin HEDP MK1 RECCE 5.56mm 16-inch Upper is perfect for those who demand the very best in terms of performance. It also comes with a 1/2×28 industry-standard thread that allows you to mount a wide variety of devices such as IR laser aimers and night vision devices. Additionally, the Griffin HEDP MK1 RECCE 5.56mm 16-inch Barrel features a 5R length gas block journal that reduces recoil for an amazing shooting experience. So don’t miss out on this must-have upper, get your hands on the Griffin Armament MK1 RECCE 5.56mm 16-inch Upper today!
#13 Griffin Armament MK1 CQB 5.56mm 11.5 inch Upper
The Griffin Armament MK1 CQB 5.56mm 11.5 inch Upper is the perfect product for anyone in need of a high-quality and reliable upper for their AR-15! This upper features an HEDP barrel for high endurance and dual-purpose functionality, as well as nitrided 416R stainless steel construction for superior hardness and durability. The M4 feed ramps and chamber are polished for smooth feeding, chambering, and extraction, while the TRUE-BORE concentric suppressor grade threads provide an optimized thread interface for your silencer. So if you’re in the market for a top-of-the-line upper that will offer years of reliable performance, look no further than the Griffin Armament MK1 CQB 5.56mm 11.5 inch Upper!
#14 POF USA Complete P-415 Edge Upper Receiver
The POF USA Complete P-415 Edge Upper Receiver is the perfect addition to your AR-15 build. This upper receiver is precision machined from aircraft-grade aluminium and features a mil-spec hard coat anodized finish. The POF USA Complete P-415 Edge Upper Receiver is compatible with all standard AR-15 components and mil-spec lower receivers.
#15 S&W 812011 M&P15 Complete AR-15 Upper
If you want an AR-15 upper that is made on the M&P15 platform, then get the S&W 812011 M&P15 Complete AR-15 Upper. This upper comes with a 14.5″ chrome-lined CMV barrel with a permanent Smith Vortex flash hider for a 16″ overall length. The right-hand helical flutes on the barrel will not loosen under sustained fire and the flute configuration is 40% stronger due to greater mass. The Troy 13″ TRX Extreme Handguard is a one-piece, free-floating rail that is designed for secure installation. Troy TRX rails are custom manufactured from aircraft aluminium and finished in MIL-SPEC Type III hard coat with Teflon. The state-of-the-art rotary locking system on this handguard provides operators with unlimited mounting options while remaining rock solid under the most strenuous conditions. So if you’re looking for a complete AR-15 upper that is sure to deliver in terms of both performance and durability, then be sure to check out the S&W 812011 M&P15 Complete AR-15 Upper.
#16 ArmaLite M15 11.5in Law Enforcement Carbine Complete Upper Receiver
Look no further for a law enforcement carbine than the ArmaLite M15 11.5in Law Enforcement Carbine Complete Upper Receiver. This impressive carbine features a chrome-lined barrel for superior durability and a MIL-STD 1913 rail that allows for rapid and repeatable sight interchange. With a short barrel length of just 11.5 inches, this carbine is perfect for close-quarters combat or other tight spaces. And because it uses both 5.56x45mm NATO and .223 Remington cartridges, you’ll have no trouble finding ammunition that fits your needs. So if you’re looking for a top-quality carbine that’s built to last, the ArmaLite M15 11.5in Law Enforcement Carbine Complete Upper Receiver is a perfect choice.
#17 Colt Mfg LE6920CK Upper Receiver Conversion Kit
The Colt Mfg LE6920CK Upper Receiver Conversion Kit is perfect for anyone looking to upgrade their AR-15 rifle. This kit contains everything you need to convert your rifle to the most state-of-the-art configuration, including a charging handle, bolt carrier group, and backup sight. The barrels feature a 1/7 right-hand twist, making them highly accurate. Whether you’re looking for better performance or just want to change up the look of your rifle, the Colt Mfg LE6920CK Upper Receiver Conversion Kit is a great choice.
#18 Colt AR-15 LE6960-CCU Upper ReceiverR 5.56 M-LOK
The Colt LE6960-CCU Upper Receiver is good for anyone looking to complete their AR-15 build with a top-quality upper receiver! This receiver is the same one used on the Colt LE6960-CCU Carbine and is designed with input from some of the most experienced trainers in the business. The receiver features a slim 13″ Centurion Arms M-LOK handguard, a mid-length gas system, and a 16.1″ lightweight profile barrel. The barrel is chrome lined with a 1-7 twist rate and finished with manganese phosphate for durability. With its high-quality construction and sleek design, this upper receiver is sure to make your AR-15 stand out from the rest!
#19 Sons of Liberty Gun Works AR-15 Sage Dynamics Upper Receiver Assembly
The Sons of Liberty Gun Works Sage Dynamics Upper Receiver Assembly is suitable for anyone seeking a top-of-the-line AR-15 upper receiver. This spectacular upper receiver has been expertly crafted by teaming up with Sons of Liberty Gun Works and Aaron Cowan of Sage Dynamics. It’s perfect for your AR pistol or SBR and comes packed with features that make it ready to take on any challenge. The 12.5” barrel is made from tough 4150 chrome moly vanadium and undergoes high-pressure and magnetic particle testing to ensure top performance. It has a carbine length gas system, a 1-7 rate of twist, and a muzzle threaded ½-28. Additionally, the 11.5” SOLGW M76 Wedge Lock Rail provides a stable platform for attaching optics and other accessories. If you’re looking for an upper receiver that won’t let you down, go with the Sons of Liberty Gun Works Sage Dynamics Upper Receiver Assembly. It’s sure to become your go-to choice for all your AR needs.
If you’re in the market for a new 5.56 upper, then you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we provided an overview of the best 5.56 uppers on the market and offered some tips on what to look for when making your purchase. We also reviewed five different models so that you can make an informed decision about which one is right for you. Thanks for reading!
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