“Trigger reset” is how much of a tactile and auditory “click” is felt at the reset point when a firearm’s trigger is let forward after a shot – and how much travel is required in order to achieve that click. This reset point is where the trigger has traveled far enough forward so that it may be pulled again for a subsequent shot.
Reset is often discussed as a reason to buy one handgun over another – buying a Glock pistol instead of a Smith & Wesson M&P, for example. The stock Glock reset is fairly positive, loud, and easy to feel when dry firing. The stock M&P reset is mushy, quiet, and not easy to discern when dry firing. Still, M&P shooters like their pistols enough to either deal with the weaker reset or use replacement components from companies like Apex.
Trigger reset is, in the opinion of some, discussed too often – or overemphasized when it comes to accurate and rapid shooting of defensive handguns. Under recoil, many people have a difficult time discerning reset. Also, if the shooter comes to know a firearm and its trigger well, having to be constantly reminded of the reset point should be unnecessary. The trigger finger should, depending on the type of shooting that is being undertaken, come far enough forward to allow the trigger to reset – as the firearm is recoiling, and without needing to feel a reset point.
Of course, not all shooters are alike. If you’re new to shooting, you might want to try a lot of different handguns, including those with strong and weak trigger resets, in order to see what works best for you. However, you might want to avoid making a purchase with trigger reset as the deciding factor.