While its intended design is for deep space construction, the concentrated laser beam of the Spectra is highly effective against organic and synthetic enemies.
The Spectra is a Corpus pistol unlockable through Energy Lab Research in the dojo. Released in Update 9, it appears to be a handheld cutting laser that (according to its description) is as effective at cutting flesh as it is at cutting metal. It is essentially a sidearm version of the Flux Rifle, with the focus on Puncture
instead of Slash
The Spectra's beam has a maximum length of 15 meters (compared to the Flux Rifle's 25 meters) and approximately five seconds of firing time before the cell runs dry.
Very useful with Volt as his Electric Shield can give the spectra infinite range, with added electrical damage.
Similar building with the Flux Rifle, adding Magnum Force to the Spectra can actually be beneficial, as the shooter does not require precise aiming. This will further reduce its medium range effectiveness however.
The Spectra is one of the most-buffed weapons of the most recent patches. It went from doing 8 physical damage to 30, as well as having gained both signifigantly better ammo consumption and a higher fire rate. This has turned it into a remarkably good close-combat weapon.
Prior to the patch, the Spectra was infamous as being considered by many to be one of the worst weapons in Warframe, having horrendously bad performance, requiring a lot of resources to build, and having terrible range as part of the bargain.
The Spectra now is essentially an alternative to the Flux Rifle -- It actually deals more damage than its rifle cousin, but has much shorter range and deploys its beam slower, thus losing range and utility in exchange for raw punch.
It specializes in puncture damage, which makes it better then the Flux Rifle against the Grineer.