I had one, lots of muzzle flash, and blast. Shooting it is like setting off a flash bang. Stopped carrying it after a friend of mine suffered permanent hearing loss from firing one shot with a 460 without hearing protection. (The bear died quickly though.)
Hard to find load data for it, and with the 5in barrel I couldn't get velocity above a 454 casulls despite using magnum rifle primers and almost double the powder of the casull's load. With a lounger barrel a 460 might be useful for long range shooting, but that's not why I got it. The novelty of being able to shoot three cartridges out of one gun, which was one of the reasons I got the gun, never was of any practical value to me. It wasn't bad to shoot, but I decided to switch to a 480 ruger for my carry peace, and traded the 460.
A buddy of mine has one that I've shot. It certainly gets your attention. His had a timing issue and was shaving lead. He sent it back to S&W and they sent him a brand spanking new one ASAP. It is a heavy piece for sure, was fun to shoot once but I doubt it'd get much action on a regular basis. Personally, I think I lean towards a 480, but I'm a SRH fan so take it FWIW....
You wernt doing somethin right then, I push aboyt everything 300-400fps faster from 460 than 454 of like barrel. Have3 460Vs and a 460XVR, they are the best hunting revilver ever made, survaceable but not the best bear gun due to it's heft but unbeatable for big game hunting . . . XVR with Lilgun can push 200g Hornadys 2400fps with stunning accuricy, the Vs 405g cast to almost 1500fps if your hand can take it. Love the 460s for hunting.
I own one with 5" barrel. (460 V)
My favorite pistol and i have a few. It goes everywhere with me and gets shot more than anything i own, and yes you dont want to shoot it very much without hearing protection, not only is it loud but at night you could signal the space shuttle with the muzzle blast. Like Andy says, it will out perform the 454 hands down with any weight bullet. I use primarly use a 360gr GC at about 1700fps or a 416gr GC at about 1500fps both hard cast, that i cast from water dropped WW. Amazingly accurate and just overal fun to shoot. Both molds are from LBT with LBT blue lube, H110 powder and BR-2 primers. There is a ton of load data out there.
Recoil is a heavy push compaired to my 44 (629 with 6.5" ported barrel) which has a pretty sharp snap. On steel, rocks or critters it hits with authority. It exceeds black powder balistics of the 45/70 which has killed about everything that ever walked. (yes i am a 45/70 fan too).
If you like big bore pistols for hunting, you would like the 460, if you dont handload be prepaired for some heafty prices on ammo though.
just my 2 cents
Nope. I have 3 460s but only 2 V's, the third is the XVR. I have a scoped V, an iron sighted V and the scoped XVR . . . love them all. Also have 3 to 5 454s in Ruger SBH at most any time, those are great guns too but I part with them as they are far more easy to replace and re-work.