All that power is great if your hitting what you shoot at.
If your shooting a light 7mm that kicks the hell out of you your not going to shoot it as well as a 308 of the same weight.
I don't think that all that power is realy called for but the extra bump does help in a bind when the angles arn't the best. That is whay I shoot a 100lb bow for everything I hunt , do I need it ,,no not usualy but its their if I do have to take a head on or strait away shot at the bull of a lifetime.
Personaly , I think that in the correct hands that the 308 will do anything it asked of , it just happens to be a narrow field of hands , the extra power makes the group a little larger.
AGAIN , I ask the fellow that posted this
What ranges are you going to be shooting and what are you looking for your gun to do ?
Hell for all we know this guy might need a 338 Lapua !!
For the mule deer and elk rifle you mentioned,
I would buy a 7mm Mag and never look back.
Theres "NO" 308 Win that can give you the ballsitics that the 7mm Mag will give you in any bullet of the same weight.
If you ever entertain the thought of reaching out to medium longrange, the 7mm will do it much better.
If you used a custom bullet of 180 grs in the 7mm, it will have nearly a .700 BC.
The only bullet coming close to that in the 30 cal is the Sierra 240 gr MK with a .711 and that bullet just don't go fast enough from the the little 308 Win case to be a good choice. The best bullets in the 308 seems to be the 168gr to 175 gr and the BC of those bullets are very low compared to the 7mm 162gr, 168 gr or 180 gr.
My vote would be the 7mm mag for short range or medium longrange for mule deer or elk.
You really are talking apples and oranges, or chalk and cheese as they say here..A better comparison would be the 300 Win Mag/7 Rem Mag or 308 Win/7 x 57 Mauser..
The accolades of the 7mm is a good choice of bullets, good velocities for long distance, doesn't leave you for want..the cons are that it is a barrel burning round, is an overbore cartridge which is not very efficient in hunting length barrels.
The .308 also includes a vast choice of bullets, velocity is ok but not stellar, accurate up to 800 yds, very stable, and it will shoot for many many years, not a barrel burner, cheap easy to find components, and lots of ballistic data...cons are it doesn't pack the punch of the larger 'magnum' 30 cal class..
I wouldn't hesitate to take either into the field, after any large north american game..Whatever you shoot, hit the range as much as you possibly can, know the rifle and where the bullet is going to strike..Shot placement is the name of the game...
Mr Jones, in response to your question: <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><HR>AGAIN , I ask the fellow that posted this. What ranges are you going to be shooting and what are you looking for your gun to do ?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
To clarify from my original post about hunting Deer and Elk in Idaho and Wyoming, I'll add that ranges will generally be 200-350 yards. Longer than that would be under ideal conditions.
What do I want the gun to do:
1. Get a bullet out to these distances wth enough energy to kill what I aim at.
2. The rifle should be light enough to carry all day, yet not too light that the recoil is unmanageable.
It's an interesting discussion trying to balance the two and look at all options for a single rifle. Is there a perfect gun, I doubt it, but I do beleive that a particular rifle of given design matched with a good all around caliber to cover most circumstances is achievable.
Here's another scenario you might want to comment on, and was brought up by others, JR I believe.
I have narrowed the caliber down to the 7mm Rem. Mag or the .300 Win. Mag. Would you be kind enough to offer your advice on these two and your preference?
I appreciate your input