The Best Compound Bows on the Market – 2017 Reviews
In the history of archery the compound bows is the new kid on the block with production starting in the 1960s. The system of pulleys, cables, and cams enabled archers to hold heavy draw weight at full draw without the muscle fatigue that you would expect. They are also more complex than the other types of bows and it’s not recommended for beginners to start out with one.
If you’re just starting out it may not be the right approach to search for the best compound bow reviews. Many of those will list the top-rated compound bows for experts and hunters. So this guide will be more comprehensive in providing choices from all levels of the top-rated compound bows. You will also learn about the different types of compound bows that are out there and a buying guide on what to look for.
To start off, it’s important to know the different types of compound bows you will find. These are classified by the type of cam system they use (bow eccentric). When a cam rotates, the force has is needed to hold the bow in the position will reach its peak. Then it will start to decrease as the bow gets closer to its maximum extension. This percent-difference between the maximum force during draw and force necessary to hold the bow in its full extension is called “let-off”. Usually this value will be somewhere in between 65% and 80% of the peak weight. Each cam type has their advantages and disadvantages that we will cover below.
Types of Compound Bows
This is probably the most popular type you will find in the market. It’s also what most of the starter compound bows use because it is easy to use. It has an “idler wheel” at the top and as elliptical “power cam” that you find on the lower end. Single cams are also quieter and easier to maintain than other types. Its drawback is that single cams are harder to tune than the other types.
As the name would suggest these have two identical eccentrics “wheels” that are on the end of the limbs. When the cams rotate together you have equal pressure on the bow string which is called level nock travel. You will also have greater accuracy and higher velocity. The complexity of its twin cam design does mean that you will spending more time maintaining and tuning it.
You will find the power cam on the bottom of hybrid cam bows. A controlling cam sits at the top that’s connected with a single split harness, cable, and bow string. They require less maintenance than other types. You can make adjustments in the draw stop in a coordinated manner by synchronizing the cams to get the right settings for nock travel. However, the nock travel is not as great as other types such as twin cams.
The two cams are connected to one another in a loop and will operate independently of each other. Equalization on bow strings, control cables, and limbs are possible through a system that coordinates each cam’s rotating at the same time so they will not go out of sync. You will enjoy extremely high velocity and a level nock travel. But this is a more complex system so be aware of frequent tuning and maintenance schedules.
Top 5 Compound Bows
There are certain factors such as draw length and draw weight that you will also look for that are dependent on your own personal comfort level. Those will be explained later. What everyone should look for in a bow is great construction made with high quality materials that will ensure it will last years. As you consider the top-rated compound bows below make sure that your skill level makes sense for the bow.
Here is a highly innovative compound bow that will allow just about any archer to aim at a target and use very little effort to shoot. That means you will be able to keep proper shooting form and not have to worry about wearing yourself out from shooting bow after bow. For those starting out learning to use a bow, this is going to be the ultimate starter product. It’s designed for those beginners with the high-quality manufacturing that’s durable. That’s probably why you see it listed on the best compound bow reviews all over the web.
It uses compressed ABSs that has just the right of amount of strength, weight, and balance. This helps its expand the life of the bow. To hold and protect the limbs, it features back pivoting limb pockets. There is a strong connection with the rigid tolerances to help improve accuracy. Cuts out that are in the riser adds to the elegant waffle look. You can draw weights up to 55 lbs, loosening the bolt decrease the draw weight by 5 pounds or tightening it to increase it by 5 pounds. Arrows can be launched for a speed of up to 206 feet per seconds. A nice feature of the bow is the ability to adjust the bow sight for right hand use.
This is another bow that has a solid mix of quality and durability. This bow is found on many compound bow reviews with similar ratings. It’s a great choice for beginners and even the more experienced archer. It can also be used for hunting and that’s not only because of its camouflage coloring; It was truly built for hunting use.
Its limbs are built with fiberglass to use for countless hours at the practice range. The aluminum riser allows gives it a smooth, firm base to rest your arrow as you take aim. Cutouts in the riser gives it that waffled contour look. You can freeze the draw weight in comfortable manner due to the dual eccentric cams. All you must do is move the pin either up or down a hole until you have a comfortable draw weigh.
Adjustments can be made to the draw weight between 55 and 70 pounds. The draw weight is adjusted by 5 pounds for each hole. To keep from wearing yourself out, you can adjust the draw length between 26 to 30 inches. The axle to axle length is 35 inches and can reach a speed up to 270 feet per second.
After using this bow you will understand why they say it’s a bow that will fit into all ranges of ability. Diamond is also one of the best compound bow brands out there. Its versatile with a great set of useful accessories right out of the gate. A 3-Pin Tundra Sight and Tube Peep Sight helps you aim more accurately. Another useful add on is the 5” ultra-lite Octane Stabilizer that will assist with taking out the vibrations while you are shooting. That will give you more balance and the ability to have an accurate, stable whole draw cycle.
The DeadLock Lite Octane quiver has the capacity to hold 5 bow mounted bows. The simply designed and durable Hostage XL Arrow Rest is fine for when you are starting out. You may consider replacing it in the future for a higher quality arrow rest. Finally, the is a BCY String D-Loop and Comfort Wrist Sling that the Infinite Edge Pro comes packaged with. Attached to the area in which the nock is on the bowstring, the BCY Loop can be used to pull or hold the string. Using the wrist sling you can secure your bow onto your wrist to prevent accidental bow drops after shooting.
Aside from the slew of accessories, the Infinite Edge Pro weighs a light 3.2 pounds. Its constructed using high quality solid limbs which run parallel to another. Lightweight aluminum is used for the riser which also sports quite a few cut outs. Silence is achieved through the dual eccentric cam system that offers great nock travel and speed. There is an impressive range of draw length between 13” to 31”. Adjustment do the draw length do have to be done manually. Your expected shooting speed will be around 310 feet per second.
Leader Accessories 50-70 is a solid and affordable choice for many archers out there who are beginning to learn the art of bowing. You will get a few basic accessories such as an arrow rest and a 2-pin sight. The arrow rest is plastic and a 2-pin sight is simple. So you may consider purchasing more practical options.
The parallel limb design prevents hand shock. The materials used to make the Leader Accessories is modern composite material that offers a good degree of durability. The aluminum riser has modern looking cut outs that bring down the weight and makes it easier to handle. You can take it with you on bowhunting excursions in small ground blinds with its compact axle to axle length of 35”. It is on the heavier side, weighing in at about 4.4. pounds.
Out of the box the bow comes set with a draw weight of 70 pounds that you can adjust down to 50 pounds. The draw length is a range between 26” to 30”. Speed clocks in at 310 feet per second that makes it suitable for bowhunting. By attaching a bowfishing reel to the predrilled mounting holes you can use it for bowfishing.
Suitable for almost any beginner or youth, the Genesis Original is a budget friendly choice and is the official bow of the National Archery in The Schools Program. It’s no surprise to find out that Genesis is one of the best compound bow brands out there. You have the option of either a left or right handed version depending on your personal preference. When you first take it out of the box it’s pretty much ready to shoot as it comes fully assembled and pre-strung.
The draw weight can be adjusted up to a maximum of 20 pounds which means that you won’t be going hunting with it. With its light draw weight it should come to no surprise that it comes with no let off. There is a basic NAP flipper style arrow rest will work adequately. An Allen wrench also comes in the box that you can use to adjust the draw weight.
12 different finishes allow just about everyone to pick out a color that appeases their eyes. Pre-drilled holes give you the chance to install a sight of your choosing. It’s recommended to finger-shoot with the Genesis Original though it can be shot with a D-loop and mechanical release aid. Hand shock is not an issue with the silence of this model. It features composite split limbs and a single cam system. The axle to axle length is 35.5” and weight is 3.5 pounds Overall this is a bow with high quality material that is built to be sturdy.
Here are five other top compound bow choices to consider:
You need to consider how you will be using the bow and your own needs when selecting the best compound bow for you. These factors could leave you frustrated or fatigued if you overlook them.
Check out this video for a full depth guide to buying a compound bow:
Below are some things that you should look.
The distance that a compound bow will draw before the string stops is called the draw length. In most cases the drawn length can be adjusted. In this way the shooter can fit the length to their comfort. You can calculate your draw length by having someone measure your arm span in inches then dividing that number by 2.5. You need to ensure that you buy a bow that you can adjust to the appropriate draw length. A drawn length that is too short could hurt your accuracy while a draw length that’s too long will cause problems like improper shooting forms.
Another important consideration is how your strength matches to the bows draw weight. Compound bows are built lessen the weight that archers have to hold at full draw which is called let-off. To match the weight to your strength you will want to draw the bow for 20-30 seconds without shaking. A heavier draw weight produces faster speeds but the effect is negated if you can’t hold the draw for a more accurate shot.
The distance that exists between the bowstring and grip is the brace height. The shorter the brace height, the more powerful will be. This also makes the bow more difficult to shoot. A shortened brace will have strings that are closer to h riser that will difficulty for proper drawing techniques. Therefore, brace height can be a double-edged sword. It is agreed by both manufacuturs a bow hunters that 7 inches is the ideal brace height to drive a balance between ease of use and power.
There’s two things to know about limbs on a compound bow. First the limb style isn’t that relevant a factor. Compound bows usually have either solid limbs or split limbs. What’s going to matter regardless of the limb style is the quality of the materials. Low quality limbs can break or even splinter though most of the trusted bow manufactures use high quality materials.
The second thing you should consider is that parallel limbs which are found in newer, high quality compound bows are best for minimizing hand-shock. Older compound bows were constructed with close to vertical limbs that caused limbs to accelerate forward, transferring that energy to the riser.
You’ve likely been inside a Cabela’s or BassPro shop and know that the countless number of choices in can get mind numbing. Knowing the type of compound bow that you’re looking for will help you target your options. The bows listed here have reputable brand names among the industry. But a lot of the decision will be factored by your strength, height, etc. that will make it a top compound bow for you. So it’s always a good idea to get out there and try different bows. One thing that everyone can agree on whether you’re that experienced hunter or an eager novice, using a compound bow is an experience like no other.