So i was able to pick up a Blue Label Gen 5 G19 today. First impressions are positive. I apologize in advance for the mediocre photos.
On first impression, the NDLC coating is considerably darker than that of the Gen 4 finish and seems to be more resistant to cosmetic scratching, fingerprints, etc. Time will tell if this change shows significant improvement or was simply something to change. The chamfered edges of the slide are a nice touch and do seem to make reholstering seem simpler and more snag free.
The flared magazine well, and front strap cutout feels pretty good in the hand, and i think will help in the case of forced magazine extraction. One thing i noticed right away was the edges of the front strap cuts were somewhat jagged and could potentially cause issues rubbing or irritating the pinky finger if you have larger hands.
The Trigger grooves have been replaced by the older model flat faced trigger and feels, at least to me, as though it has been improved in pull weight, pre-travel and consistency. It breaks very smooth and seems as though right out of the box it has been dry fired at least 1000 times. Im pretty impressed, and look forward to getting some rounds downrange.
I had been told the trigger guard had been undercut slightly more to accommodate those with larger hands, and to try to eliminate the "Glock-knuckle". I didnt find it noticeable in any way, but without the finger grooves, it is more comfortable, for me, to get a higher purchase on the grip.
There were some updates to the magazines floorplates, as well as the followers. They are backwards compatible as far as i can tell and the Gen 3 and 4 magazines seat well in the Gen 5 without issue. All magazines dropped free with the magazine release without any manipulation of the pistol whatsoever.
The front lip of the magazine floorplate is slightly extended and tilted upwards, and when inserted in the magazine well, makes for a very nice fit. The front strap cut outs allow a nice grip on the front of the magazine floorplate if necessary to forcibly remove the magazine in the event of a malfunction.
The followers have been changed to an orange colored follower, as i believe this was an FBI specific request. They seem as reliable as previous generations and did not present any issues with loading and unloading.
While i have not yet done a full detailed strip of the pistol, there are some noticeable changes. The frame is now a 2 pin frame as seen in previous generations. The slide rails seem a touch longer and more pronounced as well.
I should be able to get out this weekend and run this pistol through its paces. I have about 700-800 rounds ready to go in order to test some general marksmanship and inherent accuracy and reliability. I did notice that on my pistol, the rear sight is drifted significantly towards the right side, right out of the box. This wont matter as I will be replacing the stock sights in the next couple days. I will try to update after i put some rounds through it. Let me know if anyone has any specific questions.