Monday, May 23, 2011

Pistol Report - Review of the EAA Witness Steel 9/22 Combo Full Size Pistol

The Unboxing
Today I will be reviewing the EAA Witness Steel, Full size Pistol. Also known outside the US as the Tanfoglio T95 combat. This version of the witness is the 9/22 combo, which comes stock as a 9mm pistol and includes the 22LR conversion kit. Also included with the pistol and the kit is a plastic 22LR magazine, a 9mm steel magazine, pistol manual, conversion kit manual, and safety lock.

First, let me start by noting that I am not a professional gun reviewer. I like guns and I like to shoot them. I have a Springfield XD40 pistol that I like to shoot. However, 40 cal ammo is very expensive, and I wanted a 22LR pistol that had the feel and weight of the XD40 that I could use for practice. I did a lot of research online and there were very few solutions for what I wanted. My choices came down between the ISSC M22 ($199), The Chiappa 1911-22 ($267), the Sig Mosquito ($299), the ATI GSG 1911-22 ($335), and finally the Sig P229 22LR ($499).

The M22 was perfect mostly because of the price, the only issue is that the retailers that sell the M22 for $199 are always out of stock, and CDNN Sports, who sell it for $229, are located in Texas, so taxes, shipping, and transfer fee were an added cost that brought the cost close to the Sig Mosquito’s range. The Mosquito became my second option after the M22. However, bad reviews everywhere online and smaller frame made me keep searching.

I finally decided to save a little money and buy the Sig P229 22LR, which has the option to be upgraded to a bigger caliber by buying a conversion kit. However, I searched all over the internet, and even called Sig Sauer a couple of times, because I wanted to make sure that the caliber conversion kit for the P229 would come with a 4” barrel instead of the 4.5” barrel that are advertised by Sig (Conversion Kits work on p220, p226, and p229. However, only the p229 comes stock with a 4” barrel). Since I could not find an answer and I was still searching, and I came across the EAA Witness Steel Combo.

I searched online for information on the EAA Witness and there is not a lot of information on this Pistol compared to the major names in the industry. What little information I did find made me realized that this combo package was a very good deal. This pistol is based, or a clone of, the CZ-75, which is a very popular pistol throughout the world for its price point and reputation. Furthermore, Tanfoglio, which manufactures this pistol in Italy, has made improvements over the CZ-75 to make it an even better deal.

First time at the range

Rounds 100-200
I went to the range with intentions of only shooting the EAA Witness 22LR kit. I brought 100 Rounds of CCI mini mag, and 100 rounds of Winchester Super X. The EAA Witness 22LR Kit comes with an adjustable rear sight, but no adjustments were made to the sight. I first shot 50 CCI minis from 7 to 10 yards with no problem and good accuracy. Double action on the pistol was heavy. It was too heavy for my taste and shots hit way outside of the target area. Single action was nice and quick. I really like the single action of the EAA Witness pistol. I then went with 50 rounds of the Winchester Super X. This time I went past the 10 yards to somewhere in between 10 and 15 yards. Shots were accurate as well. Please keep in mind that not a single round has failed so far with the EAA Witness. After 100 rounds I changed targets and kept shooting at around the same distance. I shot another 50 rounds of CCI, and I then shot 40 rounds of Winchester. On my last magazine, I had a failure to eject after 191 rounds. I then went and shot my last rounds with no issues. Recoil with the EAA Witness 22LR conversion kit in very soft and accuracy was great. It is very enjoyable to shoot this pistol with this kit!

Since I had time left, I went and bought 50 rounds of 9mm ammunition, and exchanged the slides on the EAA Witness to the 9mm. I check the barrel of the EAA Witness 22LR conversion kit and it was not too dirty for the 200 rounds. The 22LR magazine was a little dirtier. I shot 50 9mm rounds with no issues at all. I did notice that the shots where hitting right of the targets. Keep in mind that the sights for the 9mm are not adjustable. Recoil, compared to the XD40, was much softer and it was very enjoyable to shoot as well. I need to do more shooting with the EAA Witness 9mm to figure why the shots were hitting right of my targets.

Feel of the EAA Witness

The EAA Witness feels great in my hand. It feel much nicer than my XD40 on the palm of the right hand. I feel like there is not an empty space, and there is no movement when shooting. With the XD40, I sometimes feel that the pistol shifts in my hand a little while shooting, and that causes inaccuracy. If I put 100 rounds with the XD, it could actually cause irritation around the hand. I know the XD has a bigger caliber, but the EAA Witness just felt so good.

The sights on the the 9mm slide are fixed and have the 3 dot system. They are just white in color and there is no air on the sights, which makes it great. The sights on the 22LR kit are adjustable but there is no 3 dot system. You only see black and again, there is not air in between the front and rear sights.

With regards to the trigger. I was a little disappointed with the EAA Witness. Double action felt really heavy. even shooting with the 22LR kit. Shots were not even close to the targets. Single action, however, was great. It felt quick and snappy. I have no complains with the single action of the EAA Witness and I am actually pretty happy that it is close to what the XD40 has.

The magazine release is well positioned and is easily accessible from the thumb. So is the pistol safe, which is just position over the thumb area. The slide release is reachable with the thumb, however, it is not very comfortable to use. I would imagine that a person with smaller hands would not even reach the slide release. I have to make an adjustment to my hand in order to release the slide.


Disassembly if fairly simple. Remove the magazine. On the left side of the EAA Witness, towards the back, you have two dots (one of the slide and one of the frame). You just move the slide back so that the two dots are aligned. Once aligned, take your magazine and push the pin on the right side of the frame. Once it pushes out, pull the ping and move the slide forward.

The slide has the barrel and the recoil spring. You can now exchange to the EAA Witness 22LR conversion kit. Or just remove the recoil spring and pull out the barrel, and you have disassembled the EAA Witness for cleaning.


The EAA Witness Steel full size 9/22 combo pistol is a great buy. This pistol can be found online for just under $400. I purchased mine locally for $399 plus taxes in order to help support my local dealer who opened their store recently. For that price you are basically receiving a 9mm pistol, and 22LR pistol, lifetime warranty, and lots of fun time at the range without going broke. The pistol feels great, is reliable, well built, affordable, accurate, and it is easy to clean.

On the negative side, my pistol came from the factory with a couple of scratches. The 22LR kit actually had two big scratches that removed the paint and you are able to see the aluminum below the paint. The overall finish of the pistol is not great. The finish is nowhere close to the finishes of the XD40 or a Glock. Also on the 22LR kit, the loaded camber indicator is always indicating that there is a round in the chamber, even thought there is nothing. For what I can tell, the barrel is pushing too far back and pushes out the indicator. This does not have any negative effect when there is a round in the chamber, it is just useless when there is not a round. Lastly, the slide on the 22LR kit does not lock back after the last round.

I would definitely recommend the EAA Witness 9/22 Combo to anyone looking for a 22LR for range practice. I would also recommend the EAA Witness 9/22 combo to someone buying their first handgun, or someone adding a full steel gun to their collection.

I will be going to the range to shoot this pistol for the next couple of week and report back with an update. For those searching online, the sku number for the EAA Witness Steel 9/22 Combo is 999175.

For the latest updates on EAA Witness, click here.



  1. Thank you for the pics & the review. I was torn between a 22lr and a 9mm, and I guess this is the most sensible choice. Thanks again

  2. When using the 9mm-kit, is the first round still SA or is it DA?

    1. I would depend on where you have the hammer. if de-cock and you insert a magazine, pull rack the slide, the bullet goes in the chamber, the pistol will then be at single action. You can then lower the hammer (carefully) and it will be a doble action.

    2. why cant i find a 12 round clip for my eaa 40 witness it came with one when i bought it but all i can find on line there are all 10 why is that

  3. I bought one in 2011 then got conv. kit in 2012 . Paid 300 new for gun then around 125 for conv. . If buying seprately shop around. As for the sight drift look under the foam in the factory case for a small allen key. Use the key to loosen the rear sight screws then gently move or center the sight then retighten. It worked for me. Good luck to all who see this. I love my EAA was looking at a Beretta 92 FS not now.

  4. Why not explain all the different types of guns like the 40 cal s&w, because that is what I purchased. all I see on line in testing these guns are 45cal and the 9mm nothing on the 40 cal, why??