The answer is mostly personal preference. A muzzle brake is not required, but it is suggested on the larger calibers (300Win Mag, 338 Lapua, 375 H&H, 7mm RUM, etc). A good brake can also be a benefit for the smaller calibers and for shooters that are just starting out. Muzzle brakes are designed to reduce the recoil of a rifle. The downside is that they are very loud. Hearing protection should always be worn, especially when hunting with a brake. There are different brakes of different designs and they all have different performance levels. We recommend different brakes for different situations. If a shooter is often in the prone position, then a 360° ported brake is not wise, because the blast pressure will cause the material under the brake to be disturbed. If the shooter does not shoot in the prone position, then a 360° brake is acceptable. The benefit of the brake on the smaller calibers is that it will keep you on target so that seeing your impacts on targets and game is possible. Most competition precision rifles are going with some type of brake for this reason.

Keep in mind that some hunting guides do not allow rifles with muzzle brakes due to the noise. Keep this in mind and you can order your rifle with a removable brake.