By "waste" I meant if Im going to spend $400 or so on a .22 would it just be better to spend an extra hundred or so dollars on a 9mm or something
My favorite .22 revolver isn't $400 - it's more like $600. No,it isn't a waste. It is a fairly close approximation in size and weight to my .44 mag. By shooting a lot with the cheap .22 ammo, I can improve my shooting with my .44 at a fraction of th cost. It only takes a year or so of that kind of savings to pay for that $600 gun.
One thing new gun owners never seem to realize - the cost of the gun itself is only the beginning. With any significant amount of range time, the cost of ammo will FAR outweigh the cost of the gun.