Is the AK74 better than an M16?

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A Comment About AccuracyOne of the big supposed benefits of American rifles over Russian ones is their greater accuracy. It's true, but it's a mixed bag. The M-16 is more accurate than the AK; it's also longer, so it gets tangled up in your camo net easier.
The Army issues the M4 carbine to some units--the 82d Airborne has them, for instance. This rifle has good accuracy out to around 200 meters. Basically, at the sub-200-meter range infantrymen usually fight at, any of these rifles is accurate enough to do what it needs to do. If you need to shoot someone at long range, a Russian soldier would call on his squad's SVD or Dragunov sniper rifle crew, and the American soldier would ask for support from his unit's sniper team.
Now, if you REALLY want to talk stupid look at the M231 Firing Port Weapon, made for firing from the rear firing ports on the Bradley Fighting Vehicle. You're only allowed to fire tracers out of it--it's got no sights and it fires only in full-auto.  The CompetitionM-16:

The M16 is more accurate, fires at a faster rate, lighter, wider range, and more versatile allowing more modifications. Some modifications include a M203 grenade launcher and a silencer. It uses a 5.56 mm caliber bullet. Can fire 700 to 950 rounds/min depending on the modifications and the model. The M16 Isn't as loud as the AK-47. It weighs 8.5 pounds when not loaded and when loaded is 8.79. The barrel length on a standard M16 is 20 inches making it more accurate. Can be effective up to 550 meters. The standard M16 rifle uses a 30 round clip.


The AK-47 on the other hand uses a 7.62 mm thus making it more powerful than a M16. It can fire 600 rounds/min making it slower. The best deal you can get for an automatic weapon. Its also easy to operate, clean, and repair. It is heavy making it harder to carry and fire, Thus making it less accurate. AK-47 has a bad safety mechanism. It has a 16.3 inch barrel. It's effective range is around 100 to 800 meters depending on the weapons sight adjustments. The standard AK-47 can hold a 30 round clip. It may hold more by adding bigger magazines such as the drum magazine which may hold up to 75 rounds.
The AK-74 is the rifle currently issued to Russian forces. Its 5.45mm round is lighter than the 7.62mm round used in the AK-47. In most other respects it's about the same as the AK-47. The rifle's handguard, pistol grip and stock have recently been changed to black plastic, and there are a few little indentations on the rifle so you can feel in the dark it's an AK-74 instead of an AK-47 so you won't try putting the wrong ammo in it. The magazine is made of unbreakable plastic. When it came out it was orange; new ones are dark brown. It is still a very reliable weapon.
AK-101 and AK-102
As an entry into the lucrative export market for weapons of war, Kalashnikov offers the AK-101 (fixed stock) and AK-102 (folding stock) assault rifles. It's the same AK we've grown to love, but in 5.56mm NATO caliber.

PS: I am improving this answer based on a lot of research that I have done on various firearms. The "detailed" analysis that the person has given above me seems very CS-like, video-gamy if you know what I mean.

First mistake - the 7.62mm doesnt make the AK47 a weapon with more stopping power than the m16. There are 2 reagents that determine how deadly a bullet is - kinetic energy and bullet drag in the human body. here, the 7.62 of the ak47 is relatively unconvincing. it has 2000J of energy but its bullet drag is very, very low meaning if it hits you it would just keep on going and leave a clean wound. the 5.56 mm of the m16 has about 1700J of energy (almost as much as the 7.62) but its bullet drag is amazing. it doesnt leave the human body, therefore a surgeon has to take out the bullet before you are up and ready to fight. as in everything there is always a BUT. a stuck 5.56 bullet can kill you in hours, meaning you can get hit by it, continue fighting and die a lot later. on the other hand, if you get hit by a 7.62 bullet you will be down because of the shock that this heavy bullet delivers to you. you can even die from the shock of the bullet breaking your life vest.

However, the things i just stated are irrelevant because you are asking if an m16 is better than an ak SEVEN-FOUR. so here it comes:

here is where the AK74m comes into play. Saying that m16s are "more accurate" than an "AK" is completely wrong. the m16 is more "accurate" than an ak FOUR-SEVEN! but the ak 74 uses the 5.45mm bullet which is ballistically like a 5.56mm but there are 2 huge differences, caused by the 5.45's soft head. first of all, the 5.45 has nearly 2 times less recoil when fired full auto. second of all, the 5.45 has a soft or hollow point which makes its bullet drag much higher than any other bullet. Also, the ak74 is even more reliable than an ak47.

and another thing that the guy above forgot to mention - all assault rifles (ak47 ak74 m16 g36 fal) are meant to be used at 300m. so saying that an m16 has better range than an ak47 and an ak74 has better range than an m16 is wrong. the theoritical range of an m16 is 600m. the theoritical range of an ak74 is ALMOST ONE KILOMETER. but the ak47 has a range of 300m so it covers the necessary range for an assault rifle, therefore all three rifles can be used at the standard assault rifle range.

in conclusion, i find the ak74 the better weapon. even Eugene stoner, the creator of the m16 found the ak74 the best assault rifle. i think that i helped a lot by comparing the ak74 and m16, not giving a childish comparison between an m16 and an ak47 based on what they've seen in a computer game.  

I'm the person who wrote what was dismissed as being out of a video game. Strange--I have never played first-person shooters in my life; I got my information from places like the Soviet Military Review, Soldiers Magazine, Janes Infantry well as handling and firing the weapons in question.

Let me dispell one thing right now: assault rifles are not "all" intended to be used at 300 meters. In fact, 300 meters is one of the most cruel jokes out there. Three hundred meters is about a thousand feet. You fire a rifle at someone a thousand feet away and he will move before the bullet reaches him. A good working range for a rifle in combat is about 150 meters, and the Army needs to quit teaching that stupid 300 meter target because it's a useless skill bordering on dangerous--at a thousand feet out it's very, very hard to tell the difference between a friendly soldier and The Enemy. They need to ditch anything over 150 meters and throw some friendly targets in there--shoot one of those and you get an automatic zero on your qualification attempt. Kalashnikov made his rifles to be used at 150 meters.

IMO, comparisons like this are kinda fun, in a debating sort of way, but they're really pointless. Both rifles are reliable enough for their task. Both are effective at killing people. If I could choose ONE of them I'd probably pick an AK-74S because it can be collapsed pretty small, so you can get in and out of your camo nets without getting your rifle hung up. (I keep emphasizing camo nets because it's really easy to get tangled up in them, and not so easy to get UNtangled from them.) The M4 carbine I haven't taken through a camo net, but it's pretty small too so it's probably fine. The real problem with the M4 is they only issue it to infantrymen, who don't have to deal with camo nets very often.
Additional Information
The bullet fired from the M-16 is fired at a much greater speed therefore creation more of a shock to the body. When a bullet hits a person at that speed it creates a shock wave throughout the tissues surrounding the bullet entry point causing significant damage to nerves, blood vessels and organs. This damage is greater with the M16 because the bullet is going at a much greater speed. The M16 bullet also tends to mushroom out more also, creating a larger wound track even though the AK bullet is larger. The M16 bullet is also rumored to tumble once it enters the body, tearing out anything in its path and bouncing off bone consequently creating more immediate stopping power than the AK. Soldiers in Afghanistan have reported taking several hits with AK's and not noticing until the battle was over, while also knocking down enemy insurgents with one hit with an M16. With all other variables being debatable, the knockdown power of the M16 is the deciding factor when comparing which rifle is superior.

PS again: But the AK74's bullet the 5.45 builds on the 5.56's qualities, and you are talking about the AK being at 7.62 default which isn't true because the Russians use the AK74
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