If you’re looking for the best crossbow, then you have come to the right place.
With modernization, conventional crossbows have been made more advanced through certain modifications.
That enhance its basic purpose and made it something more than just an ordinary wooden tool.
Best Crossbows For The Money 2018 Comparison Chart
Today, hunters enjoy a more stimulating experience thanks to the new crossbows in the market.
There is a wide array of crossbows for 2018 that you can choose from; they vary in size, shape, velocity, and shooting range.
Before you spend your hard-earned money, however, it is essential that you know what you buy. With the reviews below, you delve in all relevant info you’ll ever need in selecting the best crossbow.
For instance, the table below provides several specifications for the products we feature in this article.
Should you want to take a quick look at the candidates for the best crossbow without the need for deeper info, then the table below is all you need.
|Crossbow Name||Bow Weight||Draw Weight||Velocity|
|CenterPoint Sniper||7.9 pounds||185 pounds||370 FPS|
|Excalibur Matrix||5.9 pounds||260 pounds||380 FPS|
|Barnett BCX Buck Commander||7.1 pounds||185 pounds||365 FPS|
|Barnett Recruit||6 pounds||130 pounds||300 FPS|
|SA Sports Empire Beowulf||6.5 pounds||175 pounds||360 FPS|
|Wicked Ridge by TenPoint Invader G3||6.6 pounds||165 pounds||330 FPS|
Top 6 Best Crossbow Reviews 2018
With technological improvement, also comes with a price hike. It is undeniable that modern crossbows come with high prices.
The cost of such weapons is far from the price of a fundamental pulling mechanism or what we like to call as “ancient bows.”
However, this is not enough reason to not love modern crossbows. Matter of fact, you should be grateful that they come at their respective prices.
In most cases, high price means high quality. You’ll not regret getting yourself one as you usually get what you paid for.
Another reason to love modern crossbows is they last long. You could be using a single crossbow for years without having to experience a deficiency in performance. Crossbows nowadays are designed to be durable so the user can use them more.
When choosing the best crossbow, it’s up to you as the user to pick one that you think could suit your unique preferences or the one that you think could fulfill the purpose you want it to do.
1. CenterPoint Sniper Crossbow – Best Affordable Crossbow
This crossbow is the most affordable product on our list.
The CenterPoint Sniper 370 might be the lowest-priced crossbow featured in this article, but it is definitely not the slowest regarding speed.
With an astounding 370 feet per second, it can easily compete with much more expensive crossbows in the market.
It is, however, surprising to think the 185-pound draw weight could produce such arrow speed.
What makes this crossbow quite attractive is its affordable price that could easily catch the eyes of those consumers in a tight budget.
If you look for something that is not expensive, yet not behind regarding features, then this is the ideal crossbow for you.
Apart from people who want to spend less, this crossbow could also be the best crossbow for beginners considering the price again.
Though the notion of “what you pay is what you get” exists, you can make this crossbow an exemption because it could really deliver more than what you actually paid for it.
But it has its downsides after all. This crossbow comes with vague instructions; you can’t quickly follow the directions, but you’ll still be able to understand it eventually.
Apart from that, you can see in the comparison table that this crossbow is the heaviest in our list. You can feel most of its weight in the frontal part. However, the heavy weight of this crossbow is easily compensated with the arrow speed you’ll be getting.
Moreover, you can also sense the tactical stock feels comparatively insubstantial or light. You may feel discouraged by these downsides, but hey, there’s so much on the bright side that the positive could easily outshine these dark spots.
If you have assembled crossbows before, setting this crossbow up won’t be as hard as the first time. Note that the owner’s manual might sound unclear. Don’t worry; you can still assemble the crossbow regardless if you have an experience before or none.
The staggering 370 FPS is not something to underestimate. With this crossbow, you can do target shooting as well as small game, deer, elk, bear, and moose hunting. You can do all of these at an affordable cost.
The power is something that could surprise you. With 423-grain arrows, this crossbow could work at 128 ft-lbs of kinetic energy.
That amount of kinetic energy is actually almost twice the energy required to take down grizzly bears or Cape buffalo. That’s how powerful this crossbow is.
Some experts claim they can maintain 1.5-inch patterns from 40 yards and 1-inch patterns from 30 yards. With that in mind, you can easily consider this crossbow as a lean, accurate machine.
The consistency in the pattern made by this crossbow can also be rooted to the scope; the Sniper 370 has a good scope.
Even though it’s compact, this crossbow is neither the lightest nor the smallest one in the market. The crossbow is neat and well-composed enough, making it ideal should you want to camp in your desired hunting tree stand.
Another smart feature that you’ll surely like is it comes with a shoulder sling – not all crossbows come with such basic, yet highly essential accessory. With that, you don’t have to buy one for this model.
Despite having the most weight on our list, the Sniper 370 isn’t the crossbow that could give you extreme fatigue and back strain.
The rope cocking device makes the once back-breaker 185-pound draw weight a breeze. You can notice the smoothness as the string pulls.
When it comes to safety, this crossbow also got what it takes. It has an automatic safety as well as an anti-dry fire mechanism that function seamlessly.
Before you try to pull the string back, you can turn the safety off, then engage the cocking lever – this is the appropriate cocking procedure that you should always remember.
Overall, the Sniper 370 is the ideal affordable crossbow that is both accurate and powerful!
- Very affordable; a bang for the buck
- Compact and lightweight
- Ultra-fast firing velocity at 370 FPS
- Includes an Illuminated Scope
- Completely adjustable forearm and tactical stock
- Tactical stock feels fragile and a little bit weak
- You can’t easily understand the included manual
- Comparatively heavier than other crossbows
2. Excalibur Matrix – Best Compact Recurve Crossbow
Your jaw will surely drop when you witness the power and accuracy of this recurve bow. It seems that high price also means incredible force and precision.
You can feel the quality of the trigger as you can notice how gentle and smooth it is. And the break occurs right when it’s supposed to be.
From 30 yards, you’ll be able to shoot dime size groupings in a consistent manner! Also, you can maintain 2 ½” groupings from 50 yards.
You’ll see the worth of your thousand bucks when you try to hit a target from 70 yards. Yes, you’ve read it right.
Even at 70 yards, this crossbow is still deadly and astoundingly accurate. From 75 yards, you can hold 4” groupings.
Every foot per second counts, so when you say this recurve bow is 10FPS faster than the previous model featured, it means a lot! It seems the Excalibur Matrix 380 can indeed live up to your expectations.
It can fire arrows at a raging speed of 380FPS! The kinetic energy of every arrow strike could count up to 112 ft. lbs.; which is quite powerful especially when you are sighting from afar.
The point that you can restring a recurve crossbow in the field makes it a real beaut. The downside of most recurve bows is they are wide and can get snagged on branches and limbs.
But this model is an exemption! With this recurve bow, you can now hunt from a bush with convenience.
When power and accuracy speaks, the recurve crossbow is undeniably deadly. So hunt with care!
Compared to most compound crossbows, putting together a typical recurve crossbow seems to be more complicated. You can blame it on the reality that you should string the bow.
However, this model is different from other recurve bows – the assembly comes already strung!
Note that the foot stirrup mounts by utilizing two ¼” round head bolts while the limb system places to the riser using 2 5/16” flat Allen cap screws. You can then attach the rear and front sights. It will take you a couple of shots before you can achieve dead center when sighting.
The Excalibur Matrix 380 is not only exceptional when it comes to performance; it also has the looks. When it comes looking cool and badass, this crossbow tops the list. Even a clueless rookie would look professional when he holds the Matrix 380!
Another edge of this crossbow is it’s noticeably narrower than other recurve bows. As long as legality’s on the line, you can hunt just any game you want. A crossbow this powerful could easily take down a Cape buffalo and grizzly bear.
Before hunting, you should check for existing laws in that particular state and see if your desired activity is legal or not.
Some states prohibit using draw weights beyond 200. Some also don’t allow the use of rope-cocking devices or other leverage-gaining devices.
So check first before having fun. It would be a great loss to purchase a thousand-dollar recurve bow only to know you can’t use it in your state.
The Excalibur Matrix 380’s kinetic energy is unquestionably impressive. As far as 45 yards, you can easily maintain a kinetic energy of 99 ft. lbs. which is far beyond the average kinetic energy needed to knock a grizzly bear or Cape buffalo down.
At 30 yards, you can keep a 103 ft. lbs. of kinetic energy. And when you’re shooting from the point blank range, you can conveniently throw arrows to your target at around 109 ft. lbs. of kinetic energy. And this count could go up to 112 ft. lbs. Quite a blow!
The scope of this crossbow is also pretty decent; an additional reason for making the price just right.
It comes with the standard Tact-Zone scope adjustable for speeds ranging from 275 fps and 410 fps and features reticles with a green and red rheostat.
Sighting is so easy and quick and it’s almost impossible not to achieve a dead center with this one.
Overall, the Excalibur Matrix 380 could blend seamlessly in any ground blind.
It is a recurve crossbow that defines both power and accuracy and at the same time, possesses a distinct kind of beauty and feel that you can only find in its respective price range.
Your search for the best compact recurve crossbow ends with the Excalibur Matric 380.
- The MOST lightweight crossbow in our list
- Package includes four (4) superior field tips and arrows
- Compact recurve design – the best there is
- Comes with a standard scope
- Package includes a rope-cocking device
- Scope illumination is a bit faded
3. Barnett BCX Buck Commander – Best Crossbow for The Money
The Barnett Buck Commander Extreme is yet another remarkable crossbow for serious hunters out there. Target shooting, as well as small game, moose, bear, deer, and elk hunting become more convenient when you have this powerful crossbow at hand.
The crossbow comes at a quite decent price that tells you this is not something that can be treated as a toy. This Barnett could shoot arrows at high speed: 365 FPS followed by a powerful kinetic energy of up to 126 ft. lbs.
You can maintain groupings of 1.5 inches when you are shooting 40 yards away from your target. This means accuracy is something the Barnett is competitive at.
Even as far as 60 yards, you can have consistent groupings of 3 inches. Now that’s something that gives your money its value back.
The only downside, however, is it might be difficult to assemble at first. This case usually happens when your crossbow has a glitch in its design. One potential problem could be caused by the bolt hole which is short-machined.
When it seems you can’t assemble this crossbow no matter how hard you try, it may be a signal telling you should call Barnett and request for a warranty. The crossbow might not work.
The warranty usually doesn’t cover shipping costs, but when the problem came when assembling the tool, the company would gladly cover it for you. If the remaining bolt doesn’t go all the way in; it may be due to wrong bolt hole machining.
Do not try to fix it on your own. Instead, call the brand’s customer hotline and let them take care of the things for you.
You can take your Barnett Buck Commander to shooting any game you desire. Well, as long as legal, of course.
This crossbow, along with its badass looks, could mean devastation to any shot targets. Even the largest game could not escape from the forceful 126 ft. lbs. of kinetic energy.
It seems hunting larger games isn’t as much challenging as before. You can blame it on modern crossbows just like this Barnett Buck Commander that takes hunting too seriously. Another attribute that makes this crossbow attractive to consumers is its compact design.
It means the crossbow is safe away from branches and limbs so you can carry it conveniently through the bush.
You can also attach a padded sling (purchased separately) to hold your weapon in place. Since it is compact, the crossbow can fit snugly on your back.
Depending on the user, this 7.1 lbs. is considered as light though other hunters would prefer a lighter one. Bottom line: the crossbow is not much of a burden to carry.
You’ll also like the Carbon Riser Technology of this crossbow. You can hold your position for a longer time when you are already in your standard firing position.
For instance, when you see a target and still couldn’t determine whether the target would suddenly move or be stagnant, you won’t feel the stress of holding this crossbow as you carefully hold and aim it for extended periods.
Fundamentally, there is more weight in the frontal part of the crossbow; so holding it without a rest is quite like torture. You can make this Barnett an exemption.
You can hold and aim this crossbow for several minutes, without a rest, because 50% of the riser weight has been shifted to the shoulder.
Lastly, the crossbow scope is quite decent; the illuminated 3 X 32mm multi-reticle scope delivers a great sight right out of the box. Though, you might need just a little adjustment to achieve its optimum accuracy.
Furthermore, foggy mornings won’t seem unclear anymore as the site gives sufficient illumination and superb eye relief ideal for weather conditions like this.
- Super aggressive look
- Gives you a manly design
- Includes rope-cocking device
- Package also includes arrows
- Might be hard to put together at first
4. Barnett Recruit Compound – Best Crossbow for Women
Now make way for this black beauty! The Barnett Recruit Compound Crossbow has its own distinction that makes it unique from other crossbows.
This crossbow is somehow ideal for people with a smaller frame and is also idyllically sized for women.
Despite being small and more compact than other crossbows, this one still has enough speed and power you could boast when you are hunting.
For a quite affordable price, you now have a companion in small game hunting, elk/deer hunting, bear/moose hunting, and target shooting.
If you are a small-framed person, this crossbow might be ideal for you – as it’s designed with a small-framed person in mind. The compactness of this crossbow has significant advantages; you can conveniently hold it, aim even for extended minutes, and still fire with sufficient energy.
Since it’s smaller than others, expect a lower level of power compared to the other crossbows we feature in this article.
However, the overall performance is still quite satisfactory and just enough for specific activities.
With 400-grain arrows, this Barnett could shoot arrows at a speed of 300 FPS while the kinetic energy could count up to 85 ft. lbs.
While obviously not the most powerful crossbow, remember that the Recruit is small, making its performance still impressive.
With its size in mind, younger children can now have the chance to experience actual hunting. With proper guidance, children could start learning how to hunt. Perhaps, allow them to take down a large deer for their first hunt?
If you look for a crossbow that is quite easy to install, the Barnett Recruit Crossbow could be an ideal choice. You can assemble this weapon in just a mere ten minutes!
You only have to attach the quiver (which is optional), install the riser to the stock, mount the scope or the red dot sight, and you’re done. It’s rare to find another crossbow that assembles as quickly and easily as the Barnett Recruit Compound.
Given the red dot scope has been properly adjusted to be precise for every shot target, you can now maintain a 1” grouping from 25 yards with utmost ease.
However, shooting from farther distances affects the accuracy of every shot. You can’t blame the crossbow; the lack of scope magnification is the reason behind.
You can maintain groupings of around 3” from 50 yards and keep clusters of about 5” shooting from 75 yards.
As long as you are within the crossbow’s “accurate” range, you can expect to take down even large games in just a single shot. You can use this crossbow to take down a bull moose so you can have a delectable steak for dinner.
You’ll also like the crossbow scope which is unlike conventional scopes out there; it is a red dot scope. This is one of the modern innovations created for shooters. Red dots are remarkably accurate as long as visible.
The scope can resist fogging thanks to the ice coating in the optics. Furthermore, expect a smooth performance from the adjustable illumination rheostat.
Overall, the Barnett Recruit might be small, but you can expect big things from it. It deserves the title for the best crossbow for small-framed people and the best crossbow for women.
- Quite affordable
- Professional-looking black design
- Very easy to assemble
- Ideal for smaller-framed people
- Can also be used by younger people
- Has a premium red dot scope
- Package includes rope cocking device
- There are questions concerning quality string
- Not the most powerful crossbow in the list
- Package only includes three arrows
5. SA Sports Empire Beowulf Crossbow – Best Silent Crossbow
At 6.5 lbs. This crossbow is ideal for hunting small game, elk, deer, bear, moose, and also perfect for target shooting.
At a low-range price, you’ll have a powerful crossbow in a nice camouflage color. The best part is it’s extremely quiet when you’re using it.
Assembling this crossbow is also pretty easy, though not as quick as the Barnett Recruit.
Anyway, you’ll still appreciate the assembly time of this crossbow that could not go beyond 20 minutes. In less than half an hour, your crossbow is ready for action.
At 115 lbs. of kinetic energy, you can fire arrows at a blazing speed of 360 FPS which is the fourth fastest speed in our list. It means supremacy and power behind each shot you take.
However, you can’t expect this crossbow to be as powerful as those in the thousand-dollar platform. But for its price, the speed it can offer is already decent and just right.
One downside, however, is the crossbow doesn’t look as cool as the other crossbows in the market, as well as those particular models featured in this article.
Sure the camouflage compensates for the lack of appearance impact, but it’s still hard to consider this one as something that looks totally badass.
But if looks don’t matter to you, and you value more the performance and affordability, then this crossbow could still serve you well.
Target shooting with the SAS Beowulf is fun and exciting at the same time. You will have no idea how deep the arrows could penetrate into your target. Just ready yourself to be in awe with what this crossbow can do.
It is also quite easy to sight the bow; a couple of minutes to sight and you’re ready to go. You’ll be enthralled by the crossbow’s accuracy considering that you got it for an inexpensive price.
You’ll be amazed when you test its accuracy from 20 yards. At that distance, you can maintain tight groupings; so close that the arrows will touch each other shot after shot!
At 50 yards, you’ll be able to keep 2” groupings consistently. All this accuracy in a low-range price model!
The primary edge of this crossbow against other competitors in the market? It’s super quiet. Literally quiet; this is probably the quietest crossbow you’ll ever use.
When you cock the x-bow when you need to shoot another target is just quiet and so effortless.
Despite being inexpensive, the power and accuracy this crossbow can showcase will not disappoint you.
As long as legal, you can take whatever game you like to hunt. You can take this crossbow in any of your hunting activities, and this one will never fail you regarding performance.
The scope, which is a 4 x 32 multi-reticle, provides excellent performance. However, the scope seems to lack on light gathering capabilities, but otherwise, you’ll still be satisfied with the crossbow’s overall performance.
The scope also sights with no trouble, and you can rely on it even after several months of extreme use.
The anti dry-fire works seamlessly in this crossbow, and the safety engages automatically. It means security is also something the SAS Beowulf is not behind. It is also recommended to use the rope cocking device.
It ensures consistent and even pulls on the string; at the same time, it alleviates the pain of drawing the crossbow.
The draw weight is usually 175 pounds, but your effort is greatly aided by the rope cocking device.
- Full-barrel Picatinny rails for accessories
- Best quiet crossbow; ultra quiet
- Smooth trigger
- Short warranty; just 1 year
- Only has 3 arrows
This crossbow can fire arrows up to 315 FPS. The kinetic energy produced could climb to 93 ft. lbs.
It’s neither the fastest nor the most powerful one in the market, but it can still fire arrows that could penetrate your target all the way through, even if you are shooting from 40 yards.
Assembling this crossbow is fairly simple, though assembly time is higher when compared to the previous crossbow featured. Just install the cable saver to the cables, then install the prod to the riser.
Lastly, mount your scope and quiver, then you’re good to sight your crossbow. Sighting this crossbow is a crucial step before you could test the accuracy.
You may also have to make minimal adjustments to the elevation and windage before you can finally test your accuracy.
The Invader HP could keep a 1.5” pattern from 30 yards. A 2” groupings could be held from 40 yards. Moreover, shooting from 50 yards could make clusters of 2.5”.
The kinetic energy produced by the Invader HP may not be as dominant and superb compared to other models but, you can ensure consistent accuracy when firing each arrow. Simply put, precision is defined by this crossbow.
A 93 ft. lbs. of kinetic energy may not be at par with those strengths showcased by expensive crossbows, but keep in mind this force is still deadly and can still take out a large game like a buffalo.
The only downside is, this crossbow is quite noisy, but not as noisy as the other crossbows. If you don’t mind the sound, this crossbow is still a great hunting partner. Otherwise, you’d like to have a quieter one.
You’ll also love the sling, which comes with the package because it saves you from the hassle of bringing the crossbow by hand all the time. It is comfortable to wear and a nice inclusion.
Furthermore, the crossbow is relatively lightweight at 6.6 lbs. It may not be as lightweight as other models, but you won’t feel stressed carrying it on your back even for longer hours.
The package includes a Ten Point’s 3X Multi-Line Scope, which is a pretty decent, lightweight scope with triple duplex crosshairs and 3X optics, idyllic for shooting at different ranges.
The optics are reasonably clear and crisp. However, cold temperatures may cause some fogginess, and there is no reticle illumination, unlike other scopes.
The Wicked Ridge Invader can send 420-grain arrows into the air at 315 FPS. That is 92 ft. lbs. of kinetic energy if you’re wondering; given you are at point blank range.
Know that you’ll lose a percentage of kinetic energy for every 10 yards you go beyond the point-blank range. At 30 yards, for instance, will leave you 86 ft. lbs. of kinetic energy.
The number may be small compared to the energy produced by other models but know that this force is still enough to tackle a large grizzly bear or the sought after Cape Buffalo – two of the toughest legal games in North America.
Overall, this crossbow truly lives up to its name – it’s undeniably wicked! If you’re looking for a reliable crossbow at a mid-range price, not that cheap nor not too expensive, then this crossbow is the ideal one.
- Package includes all tools for assembly
- Super Accurate
- Integrated rope-assist cocking device
- Quite a noisy crossbow
- Included scope is non-illuminated and quickly fogs
Crossbow Buying Guide
It’s good if you’re able to pick one already. If not, then it’s better to explore more of the crossbow world by trying to read this buying guide.
As mentioned a while ago, it is wise if you know where your money is going to. You can’t just spend a thousand dollars for a single crossbow when all the features you necessarily need are just available in a three-hundred dollar crossbow.
You can also experience the complete opposite; it would be an instant regret if you bought a non-expensive crossbow when it can’t accommodate your hunting needs.
You can pick your crossbow by basing on the following factors:
- Arrow Speed
- Draw Weight
When a crossbow has successfully satisfied all the factors above, then that particular crossbow could be the ideal one.
You can also consider only a single factor or two, but it’s really up to you. However, it would be best if all factors are adequate and compatible with your preference
The scope of your crossbow must be accurate to be considered as good. An ideal scope allows you to camp at a considerable distance from the desired target and at the same time, still able to hit a fatal blow in a single shot.
However, a fatal first shot doesn’t only rely on the scope but also the weight of the bow and the power used to shoot the arrow.
Bottom line – you can judge whether your scope is good or not by testing it in the real field. You can then return to the manufacturer if you’re sure there’s something wrong with its integrity.
Your arrow must travel at least 300 FPS. Any number lower than that means your crossbow is not powerful enough.
Of course, the thing that makes a crossbow so attractive is when it can release an arrow at high speed; the higher the better.
When you hunt large games, the speed of the arrow is so important that it sometimes determine whether you can take down the target within one shot or not. Whether you’re able to kill your prey or not can also be determined by the speed.
The explanation behind is simple. Speed enhances the power with which the bold hits a particular target.
3. Draw Weight
Draw weight is defined as the power or force needed to pull the arrow ‘at full length’ – as applied to typical bow and arrows.
Crossbows are not that different; the draw weight is the necessary power used to pull the arrow before its flight.
Basically, faster arrow speeds are caused by larger draw weight. A good crossbow has a draw weight between 75 to 200 pounds.
4. Secondary Factor
As the buyer, you can also pick secondary factors such as accessories and the design of the crossbow. Take this basic logic – you wouldn’t want a blue crossbow if your favorite color is black. Important accessories may include the padded slinger and rope cocking device.
Thanks for stopping by our Best Crossbows article! Now it boils down to which model you’d like to have.