The crossbow has been around for centuries and will certainly remain for some time to come. It provides hunters and target shooters more opportunities to spend time outdoors, opening up a new world of adventure. However, selecting the right crossbow can be challenging, even if you’ve been bow hunting before. When choosing a crossbow, many options are available for different hunting situations.
We have created this review guide to help you find the best crossbow for your budget. It covers what the best winners of hunting and archery are. We rate our equipment through detailed analysis focusing on several categories. These include power, user comfort, noise suppression, quality of optics, safety, and durability.
Our Top Picks
- Draw Weight: 260 lbs
- Velocity: 380 FPS
- Crossbow Weight: 5.9 lbs
- Power Stroke: 13.1
- Draw Weight: 12 Ibs
- Velocity: 430 fps
- Crossbow Weight: 7.11 lbs
- Power Stroke: 13″
They are the most important features that set each crossbow apart from the others and determine your outdoor experience with the weapon. They summarize the distinct capabilities of every bow in the market and enable you to make the best choice according to your hunting or target shooting requirements.
Essentially, the more you are willing to spend on a crossbow, the more features you will get and the higher the likelihood that all these features will meet satisfactory standards. For instance, the high-end crossbows are usually built to last longer than the lower-priced ones, as you can tell from the choice of material to the warranty period offered for specific models. Higher-priced models are also packed with features that allow for greater power and higher velocity, which translates to a much better outdoor performance.
This means that depending on your budget, particular needs, and the device’s intended use, there is an ideal crossbow in the market for you. In the list below, we have only briefly described each crossbow. For a detailed review, just hit the “read review” button for each crossbow. The detailed review contains the ratings for each of our categories so you can better pick a crossbow more suited to your needs.
The Best Crossbow Under $300
1. CenterPoint Sniper 370 – Value Crossbow
The Sniper 370 from Centerpoint offers insane value for its cheap price, which is why it’s #1 in the low section of our best crossbow list. It offers a much higher output than most middle-level bows and incorporates small details that make it quite a reliable performer. Its design is focused on quality and convenience. It uses an adjustable grip and stock, enhancing performance and making the user feel at home with the device.
It offers higher accuracy than expected from the low price point, and its package includes noise suppressors and a rubber-coated stirrup for quiet performance. The optics quality is not too shabby though it is more suited for use during daylight hours. The most outstanding security features offer a multilevel system that would be difficult to compromise even by a complete newbie. It comes with a 5-year warranty, quite an assurance of quality and versatility.
The biggest drawbacks in its design are that it is slightly front-heavy and has a significantly higher trigger creep than most other models. That said, those two issues would be largely unnoticeable if this is your first crossbow and you cannot make a comparison. Otherwise, this is one of the best value-for-money crossbows, particularly in the entry-level range. It’s ideal for beginner archers and small-scale hobby hunters.
- High velocity
- Light and compact
- Adjustable grip and stock
- Extensive package with all accessories
- Lots of creep in the trigger
- Front heavy
- Vague assembly instructions
2. PSE Fang LT – Compound Crossbow
While the PSE Fang LT technically falls into the economy class of crossbows, it is only for its price tag, not features and performance. It generates some pretty impressive power for a low-end crossbow (330 feet per second with 97-foot pounds of kinetic energy, to be exact), packing a powerful punch for such a compact design. It is lightweight and easily maneuverable, making it a fantastic option for hunting from a blind or tree stand. It is, however, made of molded rather than machined aluminum, which could cause some problems with durability, especially with regular repetitive shooting.
The Fang LT comes with everything you need to start shooting (a multi-reticle scope, three crossbow bolts, a quiver, and a rope cocker); you’ll want to upgrade the bolts and optic before you do any serious hunting. While this equipment may be sufficient for backyard target shooting, you’ll want better performance when you go after that monster buck this fall.
Well-balanced, compact, and easy to use, the PSE Fang LT is a great option for women and youth shooters, although it packs enough power to impress the strong, athletic types. The Fang LT is perfect for hunters of all ages and experience levels, offering value and performance well beyond its price point.
- Comes as a complete, ready-to-shoot package
- Compact size
- Great power and performance for the price
- Included scope is low quality
- Included bolts are not the best for hunting
3. Barnett Jackal – Entry level crossbow
The Jackal is a low-end crossbow offering reliable output and performance. It features a sturdy build, with design features that enhance the comfort and safety of a novice user. The quad limb structure makes it quite easy on the eye and gives it a professional look. It is easy to use, incorporating energy wheels that lighten the draw burden and enhance the device’s accuracy. The scope is average and ideal for daily use and over short distances.
Despite its general power, it has a low-quality retainer that might only serve you for a short time. Its shoulder rest is also rather narrow, making it a bit uncomfortable for use in a long hunting session. Additionally, it does not include a cocking aid; if you cannot draw weight by hand, you will need to purchase one. Besides that, it offers reasonable value for money and is recommended for young archers and beginners.
- Lightweight and compact
- Decent fps and penetration (most game)
- Energy wheels enhance performanc
- No rope cocking device included
- Really loud
4. Arrow Precision Inferno Fury – Lightest Crossbow
This is one of the lowest-priced yet relatively efficient crossbows in the market. Its build of fiberglass is highly compact and lightweight while at the same time ensuring durability. Its ambidextrous features on its stock make it friendly and easy to use regardless of your hand preference. It is very comfortable on the shoulder, and the inclusion of shoulder pads makes it even more convenient for its user.
It is a very quiet crossbow which is not surprising considering its low power and velocity. It takes quite a reasonable consideration into the matter of safety, incorporating a thumb guard to keep its user out of harm’s way and the standard anti-dry fire system to reduce the probability of an accident. The basic package includes a rope-cocking device that cuts the relatively heavy draw weight in half.
It is fitted with a basic sighting device that uses three red dot beams to enhance your accuracy in the target range or even afield. Unfortunately, you will have to keep adjusting it after a few shots since it only holds zero for a short time. Although the material quality is relatively reliable, it only features a 1-year warranty period.
The included arrows are also low quality and tend to break even while target shooting, so be sure to purchase extras even as you buy the bow. The Inferno Fury is best suited for target hunting owing to its low power and velocity and is a common choice for learners who need a convenient training aid to help them master the art.
- Lightweight and compact
- Easy to maneuver and use
- Relatively quiet for a recurve
- Very low power
- Low quality optics
The Best Crossbow Under $600
1. Wicked Ridge Invader – Mid-Price Crossbow
The Wicked Ridge Invader G3 is rated as one of the most cost-efficient crossbows: it’s #1 on our best crossbow list for the middle budget. (It also happens to be our highest-rated best crossbow for the money). It comes packed with features that enhance the user experience, taking safety and comfort into consideration. This is largely based on the semi-skeletal framework that does so much more than enhance visual appeal. The framework also significantly reduces the model’s weight, making it one of the lightest crossbows ever. It also ensures that the user gets a conveniently firm grip on its stock and has easy access to the safety switch without losing the hold.
One major limitation of this bow is that the provided scope is not illuminated, which means you cannot hunt in the dark. The warranty period is one of the shortest ever on crossbows: offering only one year (although with its sturdy construction, you’ll probably find that it lasts a lot longer). Overall, the bow is well-priced and ideal for newbies, young archers, and hobbyists who need user comfort but don’t require most of the other pro features that come on higher-priced models.
- Lightweight and highly accurate
- Self-retracting rope-cocking aid
- Comfortable grip
- Easy to assemble
- A little loud
- Low scope quality
- No lifetime warranty
2. Bear X Archery Bruzer FFL
For over 80 years, Bear has been shaping the archery world with top-notch products developed for performance in the field. The company has a rich tradition in the world of vertical archery, but we couldn’t be more excited about their new line of hard-hitting, high-performance crossbows.
The Bear X Bruzer FFL is everything you would expect from the Bear name. Engineered with forward-facing limbs, this crossbow offers optimal balance and a compact design. It loads, draws, shoots smoothly, and offers enough power (335 feet per second with 99.3-foot-pounds of kinetic energy) to bring down game ranging from wild turkeys to North American elk.
The Bruzer FFL lacks an integrated noise suppression system, so you’ll want to add some aftermarket gear. You may also want to upgrade the bolts and optics included in this ready-to-shoot package, especially if whitetail deer is your goal.
One major drawback of the Bear X Bruzer FFL is the weight. Weighing in at a heft of 9 pounds, this isn’t the crossbow you want to hike into the Colorado wilderness. If you plan to hike long distances over rough terrain, this isn’t the crossbow you want to do it with. However, once you make it to your stand, this gem handles like a dream, making you forget how much it weighs.
- Comes as a complete, ready-to-shoot package
- Compact design for easy maneuverability
- Excellent safety features
- Included scope is not illuminated
- Extremely heavy
- Extra long trigger pull
3. TenPoint Titan SS – Best for Whitetail Hunter
The TenPoint Titan SS is probably one of this list’s most technologically advanced bows. It has some of the most outstanding innovations in the industry. One of these is the patented ACUdraw mechanism that comes as an optional add-on to the model, cutting the draw weight to a mere fraction of the original. This makes it extremely easy to use and a great choice for beginners. It has a perfectly balanced trigger system, and the stock design is built with user comfort and safety in mind. It comes with a lifetime warranty, proof of quality, and durability.
Its scope, however, is rather simple and offers no illumination. It is also a bit noisy and could use noise suppression facilities. The greatest downside to the Titan SS is that even though the product line is loaded with awesome technological features, almost all of these require additional expense as they are not included in the basic package. Buying all of them will see its price rise above the middle-range category. However, if you are only looking for great quality and user comfort without spending too much on features you might not use, this is the best crossbow for you.
- Powerful and Accurate
- Lightweight and Narrow
- Modern features and enhancements
- Limited package
- Accessories need to be bought
4. SAS Empire Beowulf 360
The Beowulf 360 is a true master of crossbow design, introducing a new angle to compound crossbows that would have never been possible. It is renowned for being one of the quietest crossbows of all time, and this is surprising for a compound model- especially considering its rather powerful output. The secret behind this is its structural design, which thankfully hasn’t negatively impacted the pricing.
Its trigger system is smooth and efficient, and the synthetic material for its construction makes it a highly user-friendly model. It boasts a slim build that makes it easy to maneuver even in limited spaces. Its grip is ambidextrous and adjustable, providing flexibility for different users, a very important factor for comfortable use.
Even though its scope is limited in light-gathering capabilities, it is still likely to be efficient as it maintains clarity even in poor weather. Additionally, like most lower-priced models, the Beowulf 360 only offers a 1-year warranty period which is no surprise considering the price point. Overall, it is a balanced model, perfectly priced in the middle price range, offering just enough features for an exciting adventure. The bow is an excellent choice for lightweight users who want fun in the wild without spending too much.
- Extremely quiet and lightweight
- Decently high velocity and power
- Easy to assemble
- Limited scope capabilities
- 1 year warranty
The Best Crossbow under $2000
1. Ravin R20 Sniper
The Ravin R20 Sniper package is the current reigning monarch of the crossbow world, and for a good reason. It has a sleek design with a skeletonized tactical look that will impress all your hunting buddies, but the stylish design isn’t the only thing they’ll be impressed with.
Delivering cutting-edge crossbow technology and rifle-like long-range accuracy in an ultra-compact package, the Ravin R20 Sniper produces blistering speed and dynamic power (430 feet per second and 164-foot pounds of kinetic energy right off the rail). With the right broadhead and a well-placed shot, this crossbow is no match for game animals ranging from North American whitetails to African buffalo.
The ultimate in power, speed, and accuracy, the Ravin R20 Sniper comes with a custom Vortex Strike Eagle scope that mounts to an adjustable jack plate for easy adjustability. The HeliCoil technology, Frictionless Flight System, and Trac-Trigger Firing System allow this world-class crossbow to dominate the competition easily. This kind of crossbow comes with a hefty price tag, but don’t let sticker shock deter you. As with most things, you get what you pay for, and the Ravin R20 Sniper is worth every penny.
- Accuracy that rivals some firearms
- Compact design
- Reduced vibration
- Hard-hitting power for the toughest game
- Expensive price tag will be cost-prohibitive to most shooters
- Included scope lacks multiple reticles
2. Horton Storm RDX – Reverse Draw Design
The Storm RDX is the primary product of the merger between Horton Crossbows and TenPoint Technologies. This crossbow delivers both companies’ best, including Horton’s signature reverse-draw technology and TenPoint’s easy-to-draw cocking options. This crossbow is a true rock star, producing arrow speeds of 380 feet per second and 119-foot pounds of kinetic energy right off the rail.
This well-balanced, easy-to-shoot crossbow delivers the aggressive performance necessary to bring down even the toughest, largest game animals. With a sleek, tactical look and compact maneuverability, the Horton Storm RDX is sure to impress your hunting buddies. The only major drawback is the significant price tag. However, with all the features and performance this baby offers, it is well worth every penny.
- Comes as a complete, ready-to-shoot package
- Hard-hitting power and velocity
- Quiet performance
- Expensive price tag
- Heavy weight
- Included scope is not calibrated properly for this crossbow
3. Excalibur Matrix 380 – High-end Crossbow
The Excalibur Matrix 380 delivers astonishing speeds and power that allow no game to stand in its way. Its design is very keen on keeping the user comfortable. Apart from having a compact and lightweight structure, the crossbow also features a balanced stock weight so that it does not stoop forward and compromise accuracy.
Even though it features great aesthetics, it in no way compromises on quality and sturdiness; it is also one of the most convenient and accurate recurve crossbows ever. The high-quality string dampeners on the device greatly absorb shock and vibration to limit its noise production.
It is among the most popular choices for seasoned hunters as it delivers precision every single time. It is difficult to pinpoint any fault in its craftsmanship, and the only limitation you might have to endure with its use is the poor illumination of its scope.
This is inconvenient for hunters who wish to take advantage of the twilight or early morning hours to target unsuspecting prey. But other than that, this is one of the most outstanding recurve crossbows in the market and is an ideal choice for experienced hunters who want no compromise on performance.
- Extreme fps and penetration
- Compact sturdy build
- Lightweight and Quiet (REDS included)
- Poor illumination on Scope
Frequently Asked Questions
Crossbows’ performance increases yearly, and crossbow buyers benefit as well. There was a time when it was hard to imagine a bow under $400 that shot 400 fps or a bow around $1,000 that had similar features to a bow twice the cost.
Among the above models, any of them will do well for you if you want to start hunting this fall with the best crossbow. Spend a lot of time practicing before the season starts choosing the best fit for your budget.