What is the best compound bow for hunting? What is the best compound bow for target practice? What about the best youth compound bow? These are common questions when you’re shopping for a compound bow, either for yourself or someone you love.
There are a lot of different factors to consider when it comes to buying a bow. This guide covers the best overall compound bow for those with some experience and who are willing to invest in a bow that will last a few seasons. If you’re looking for the best deal on a bow check out our guide on the best compound bow for the money. New to archery? We recommend our guide to the best compound bows for beginners.
Top Compound Bows
Top Pick: Diamond Infinite Edge Pro Compound Bow
- Includes an extended draw length for longer draw archers
- Solid back wall for maximum security
- It is a multi-shooter design bow
- Suitable for both kids and adults
- 100% ready to shoot compound bow
Verdict: This best compound bow comes with great high-end parts: sight, rest, arrows, bow case, stabilizer, wrist sling, mechanical release and much more. You get a high-quality bow that comes ready for action the moment you unpack it from the box. Diamond also made it easy to fine-tune your bow. You can easily adjust the draw weight using the hex bolts on the bow, making it easy to change on the fly. Overall: Highly designed to quench your hunting thirst.
Runner Up: SAS Sergeant Compound Bow
The twin cams and CNC machines make this bow one of the smoothest and accurate compound bows. It has secure and sturdy limbs thanks to the back pivoting limb pocket that accommodates the rigid tolerance for optimum accuracy.
- Feature a 40.5” axle: draw length 29.”
- It is designed to shoot 235 feet per second
- Comes with twin cams for adjustability
- The package includes Arrow rest, quiver, finger tab, Arm Guard and 3-Pin Sight
- Twister arrow rest
- It is a great beginner and intermediate bow
Verdict: The bow is meant to last for many years to come since the included layered limb that draws weight from 55lbs is strong. The bubbles grooves that are attached to the riser provide you with a firm grip all day long. If you buy this bow, we recommend using a 30” Carbon and aluminum arrow. You can find our recommendations for the best hunting arrows here.
Best Youth Compound Bow: Barnett Vortex
The Barnett Vortex is s a great starter compound bow for young archers since it easy to use and adjust. It’s also reasonably priced, which makes it an easy investment if you’re unsure your young’un will stick with hunting.
- Has an adequate strength to hunt a deer
- Superb for young and novice hunters
- The bow is well built for sufficient accuracy
Verdict:What I like about this Barnett Vortex is that you can quickly adjust the screws so as to reduce the level of draw weight. As far as my 12-year-old nephew used it, I noticed it has a surprising amount of force for it’s size. It has more than enough power to shoot using an arrow rest, which makes it much easier to shoot with. Overall: It’s the perfect compound bow for young shooters.
Diamond by Bowtech Core Compound Bow
The most significant thing about this bow is the price – it’s a great value for what you get. Practically every compound bow technology that you have recently heard about or know is well incorporated into this bow: pivoting limb pockets, machined aluminum riser, custom two color octane ring, rotating modules, the throttle just to name but a few.
- Provides 10 times magnification and Center Focus System
- Very ready to withstand water and fog
- Comes with a well-made case
- Has a twist up eye cup
- Let off 70%; Core single cam system; 31” Axle to Axle length; Brace height: 7.3125.”
- Reflex aluminum riser
- Has a Mossy Oak Infinity Camo, Black Ops
- One piece synthetic grip
Verdict: I can only call it a “Wickedly” and fast 330 fps bow that is fully loaded for compact action. Don’t wonder how other models manufacturers are reacting about the extras of this best bow: Apex Fiber-optic Sight, Ultra-Lite 5-Arrow Quiver, Diamond S5 Stabilizer, Comfort Writ Sling, String Loop, Cable Silencers and an aluminum peep sight. You get it all for $440 (and free shipping, of course) what else could you ask for?
Bear Archery Cruzer Compound Bow
The Bear Archery Cruzer is a well solid built compound bow that is typically aimed to be used by the youth market and beginners. It’s one of the few bows on the market that works well for shoots of all sizes, so you can buy one bow for your child that can grow with them over time.
- Draw Weight: 5-70lbs; Draw Length: 12-30.”
- It is very easy to adjust and shoot straight
- Comes with an aluminium frame for maximum resilience
- The Max-Preload Quad Limbs provides the bow with super speed power
- Offset Spring suppresser
- Designed as a ready to hunt bow
Verdict:You are assured of teaching your child with much ease due to the equipped 75% let-off for maximum gripping at full draw.It typically means that the Cruzer only takes 23% of the full draw force.100% made in the USA, hence being able to trust that the brand is made with top notch material. This cost-effective compound bow also comes with a few accessories.
Genesis Original Compound Bow Kit
Genesis bows are widely known to deliver top-notch adjustment and accuracy. Not only that, they are well equipped with unique features which makes them to be used for both experienced and novice hunters. Talking about the Original Kit by Genesis is like whispering about a legendary celebrity.
- It is 100% official bow by the National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP)
- Recommended for all ages, size, and athletics
- Comes with machined 60601-T6 Aluminium Riser, Idler Wheel, durable bowstring and composite limbs
- The package includes: belt tube quiver, five aluminium arrows, adjustable arm guard and instruction manual
Verdict: Prepare yourself to receive the quietest and more accurate bow compound. This is a classic, it’s one of the best bows ever made and it’s from a reputable brand that builds in the USA.
SAS Quad Limb Compound Bow
The SAS Quad Limb Bow is one of the hottest compound bow sellers in the market due to the well-built finish and highest quality gear. The extra bonuses you get with this unique package is worth every cost, as it comes with complete 3-pin sights, quiver and arrow rest.
- Draw Weight: 35-65lb; Draw Length: 22-31”; Axle to Axle: 28”; Let off: 65%
- It is advisable to use a 30” arrow
- Maximum speed 235 FPS
- Feature the bubble grooves on the riser that ensures you have a sturdy grip
- 30”Carbon arrows recommended
- Includes the CNC machine twin cams for a smooth shooting experience
- It is a right handed bow
Verdict: With a highly adjustable draw and super construction, this bow will last for lots of years to come. The limbs are firmly equipped by pack pivoting limb pockets that allow the bow to form a unique connection with rigid tolerance for tremendous precision.
AW Pro Compound Bow Kit
The AW Pro Compound Bow Kit is a right-hand compound bow that ideally comes with a full set of arrows, a sight, a stabilizer, and a few other useful accessories. It is easily adjustable and as quiet as your archery steps.
It is an excellent bow for travel hunting. It is very easy to set and adjust, thus highly recommended for children and novice hunters. You can also easily turn the hex bolts to fine-tune your draw weight as desired.
- Comes with an aluminium alloy riser with top notch intensity
- The stainless steel cable guard assures you with optimum security
- It is very to adjust the draw weight and length
- Equipped with string silencer and peephole
- Draw weight-20-70lbs: Draw light 17-29”: Bow Weight: 3.6lbs: Arrow length: 30”
Verdict: Instead of regretting as to why you bought this compound bow by AW, you will be glad to know that you will hunt for long years to come due to its guaranteed longevity.Not only is it made with fiberglass and aluminium alloy but also gives you accurate shots with the help of string silencer and peep hole. In fact, it is one of my favorite and top list compound bows in the market.
Bear Archery Apprentice III
- It is a ready to hunt bow
- Well designed for young archers
- Comfortable adjustable draw weight and length makes it more versatile
- Comes with two smooth-cam system and new string suppression
- Weight: 2.9lbs; Length Range: 15”-27”; Let-Off: 70%; Brace Height: 6” Axle to Axle 27 ½”
- To be used by a right-hand person
High Five Scorcher
- Recommended for 10 and above age
- Draw weight: 16/29 pounds; Draw Length: 28.5”
- Includes 65% let off with adjustable aluminium cams
- Spider two piece quiver
- Quarto Limb design and HogNose Peep System provides you with ample lighting ability
- Includes 3-pin fiber optic light system which is well built with blackstrap Magnesium Riser Design
What to consider when buying a compound bow
Single Cam and Dual Cam Systems
These are typically compound bow systems that draw your bow more steadily and then releasing it multiple times with less effort. Single-cam compound bow is quite advantageous since it doesn’t wear out easily and also produce less to no sound. On the other hand, dual systems tend to produce noise and can sometimes be tedious.
A fundamental difference between compound bows and other bows like recurve and longbows is that at compound bows the distance you can draw back your bow is specific and controlled by a mechanical system found at your bow, in comparison to recurve bows and longbows that can be drawn at any distance.
That specific distance that you can draw your compound bow is called “Draw length”. As we noted above the draw length at compound bows is controlled by a mechanical system.
Let’s say you have set your draw length to 28 inches. That means that you will have to shoot ONLY from the full draw distance of 28’’ not less neither more (if you try to draw your bow more than 28’’ you will hit a “wall” and simply will not be able to stretch it more). It is really easy to understand when you have reached the Draw length distance because you will feel the bow to “lock”.
To calculate your draw length you just have to find your arms span. Hold your arms at your sides parallel to your chest (don’t overspread) and measure from one hand’s middle fingertip to the other’s. Divide that number by 2.5 and you have found your ideal draw length.
When you draw your bow to its Draw length you will feel a certain amount of weight. This amount of weight you feel is called “Draw weight”. More draw weight means more powerful and faster shots. Your ideal draw weight is calculated by your age and weight and you can check the table below for more information. If you are not sure which is your exact draw weight try this to disclose. See if you can keep the bow at its draw length without shaking for 1 minute, if you can do it you have chosen the right bow.
Brace height is the space separating the string and the pivot point of the bow when in rest. This is the point where your skill comes in to play. A smaller brace height bow gives you better acceleration but also makes it more difficult to shoot. Therefore bows with smaller brace height are better for experienced shooters, and the opposite applies for taller brace height bows.
Remember how we calculated the Draw length above? Keep that in mind because you will need it to find out your ideal bow length. Use the same technique to measure your arm span but this time don’t divide it by 2, 5. Now that you have this number check the table below to find out your bow length.
Let-off percentage is the percentage that a compound bow’s draw weight is drop to when in full draw. Which means if you have a bow with 60 lbs. draw weight and a let-off percentage of 80% you will feel only 12 lbs. of weight when in full draw. This will help you to hold and aim with your bow for extended periods of time. The majority of the compound bows have 75% to 80% let-off percentage.
Left and Right-hand Bows
Bows can come in left-handed and right-handed models. Be sure to check which model you’re looking at prior to making a purchase!
Lots of manufacturers have designed youth compound bows in such a way that they can’t often be upgraded. For this reason, they can be used by adult novice archers. Note that you will never come across with a compound bow that is only designed for five to eighteen years old. If you have younger kid, consider purchasing the smallest bow in the market and then upgrade to another level when need be. Consequently, you only need to buy one type of youth bow for your older kid before he or she is ready to test the adult rig.
Advantages of Using a Compound Bow
Compound bows have many advantages and benefits over traditional bows. These advantages make them more popular and easier to use than traditional bows.
The main advantage being that a compound bow easily customization to the archer by adjusting the cams to be softer for beginner archers and harder for professional archers giving it more speed.
Compound bows are more accurate because of easy to use sights as well as better stability and support. The stabilizer at the bottom front of the bow keep it from tilting back making it easier to stabilize when no matter where you are shooting from.
Easy to Manage
The compound bow is much easier to carry because of its light weight and shorter design. Whether it is in a case or on your back, you are sure to be comfortable while carrying it across any terrain or while placing yourself in the stand. The shorter design also makes it easier to shoot from a tree or through the bushes without being detected giving you the best experience possible whether it is target practicing or hunting.
Compound bows have a heavier draw weight making it more powerful and giving it a further shooting distance than a traditional bow. The draw weight can be adjusted as mentioned above so you are sure to have the speed and power needed to get the job done.
All of these advantages make compound bows extremely popular. Knowing these advantages will help you choose the right bow for you, not only in size and weight but for choosing the proper brands as well.
Types of Compound Bows
When you shop for compound bows for the first time, you are going to think that they all look the same, but that is wrong. There are different styles and types of compound bows. Knowing what type to shop for will be essential when finding the right bow for your needs.
Left or Right Handed
Being right or left handed has an effect on the type of compound bow you will want to buy as well as the accessories that would go along with it. If you are stronger in your left arm, then you are going to want a left handed bow, whereas if you are stronger in your right arm, you are going to want a right handed bow. Stores such as Dicks Sporting Goods have specialists that can assist you with finding the right bow that fits you perfectly.
Men and Women’s Bows
There are different bows for men and women. Most women prefer a women’s style compound bow because of a smaller design and lighter weight, as well as easier draw back and better comfort and support, but there are many women who find a men’s compound bow to be more comfortable. A men’s compound bow is often heavier than a women’s and has a heavier draw weight making it more difficult for most women to shoot. It is all a personal preference, no two people are comfortable with the same bow.
Bare or Ready-to-Shoot
Most compound bows are designed in such a way that accessories can be used to aid aiming and shooting. A bare bow does not come with these accessories that might be desired as a first time compound bow purchaser. Ready-to-Shoot bows however, come packaged in such a way that all the accessories one would desire are already on the bow. Accessories such as sights and quivers come already attached to most compound bows. Please note that a bare bow will require more work and money on your part, but in turn is more customizable than a Ready-to-shoot bow.
Do the proper research necessary before making a purchase decision on a bow. Find a bow dealer that will physically let you hold and test out the bow before you purchase it. It is important that you are comfortable handling it, aiming and shooting it before you make a dedicated decision to purchase it. This is true with any weapon you are considering to purchase, but especially true with compound bows because they are so customizable.
I bet you are in that silent moment and hoping to choose the best compound bow in one of my top ten lists. Even before starting, allow me to give an overview. The SAS compound bows are considered the best due to the installed eccentric system that enables you to move a stop pin from one hole to the next. The whole process helps you to get the optimum draw length. They are also the quietest bows in the market.
Also, the Bear Archery Bow is considered to prove the beginners that archery is the best outdoor skill by transitioning new and advanced features. The shooting speed and kinetic energy enhance the compound archery bows to succeed all other brands. It produces enough energy for hunting medium sized species.
I will not forget to mention the Barnett Vorx: This model is extremely lightweight and flexible enough to ensure you have reached a balanced adjustment level. The brand has created a well equipped and advanced carrying case, especially for traveling archers. Talking about warranty, you are 100% guaranteed to have a five years warranty from Bear Archery. All recommended for youth and beginners.
Additionally, the Diamond Bow tech bow has out wind my top ten list review. I always like to write and hear about this best compound bow. Why? I have one that has lasted for years. I am not thinking of changing another brand, simply because I have all the extras in one package. In all, it is very lightweight, can be used by any age, exemplary bow case. I don’t want to start it all. Choose the one that fits you best.