There is testing for rapid shot from long ago that shows it works like that, and it could not work the other way (rapid shot makes the first part of the shot faster, but has no effect of the reload (bullet) delay). Snap makes the shot part of the action shorter as well meaning it has to be checked at the beginning of the round. Racc and Ratt, however are not determined until the shot hits. That is easy to test, and most ppl with a ranged attacking job know you have to be in you ranged gear when it lands.
As to which is better, snapshot is exact. Its liek 4% haste for RA. Rapid shot is random. Its delay reduction is odd and I have no clue what it might average to. I assume they are close, but the more snap you get the better it gets (like haste). SO now Nav might when, but with more gear, or the lvl cap increase and /rng, might change that (both are just random guesses).
I wish i knew of a link to a test on BG, but rapid shot testing was pre BG, and is the only logical way it can work (which extends to snapshot, as the delay that gets reduced is the part you experience during the shot). I don't think anyone questions the part of needing to be in Ranged Acc/Att only for the actual hit.
Oh, and it function like this for the exact same reason fast cast works liek this. the action time is calculated when you use the ability/RA, but its recast or reload time (time until you can shoot again after the shot hits or misses) is seperate and calculated when the spell/shot lands. Only difference is that snap/rapid have no effect on the reload time, but fast cast can reduce the recast time if left on for the spell's hit.
Maybe we should get the person on BG that does all the fraps delay testing/haste testing to check out snapshot specifics, caps, and how velocity shot and snap work together.
99 THF, COR, DRK, BLM, WHM, DNC