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Crossbow Hunting Reviews: Best Crossbow For The Money

Updated on October 27, 2015

Need a Crossbow?

Crossbow hunting is without doubt one of the most exhilarating activities in the world. Their ease of use and relaxed legislation make crossbows a much better option to other hunting weapons. There is no denying that other forms of hunting, such as bow and arrow and gun hunting, do have their own appeal. However, the crossbow gives you as the hunter the best of both worlds. They are better than guns in that they are less noisy and are a whole lot easier and safer to use. When compared to bows and arrows, crossbows have the advantage of more accuracy and power making them the undisputable better option.

Making a Crossbow Choice

If you choose to go the crossbow way, it is very important to find the best one out there. As a result of the increasing popularity of wild game crossbow hunting, the market is flooded with all sorts of designs and brands of these hunting weapons. This makes it is very difficult to tell which ones are worth the investment. Below are some of the very best crossbows for the money. The list should make things easier for you to choose if you are looking to upgrade or you wish to pick up hunting as a new hobby or occupation. So let's get right to it:

Best Compound Crossbows

Crossbows have evolved over time giving rise to two main types; compound crossbows and recurve crossbows. A compound crossbow is one that uses a series of round and concentric levers to pull a stiff limb where energy to release is stored. The limb itself is short and firm and is hard to pull manually without the pulley system in play. The design ensures that they generate very high speed and force on the projectile arrow making them highly effective despite the distance from the target and the size of the same. Their one disadvantage is that they are heavy but this is nullified by all the great things that proper use can bring you as the hunter. Below are reviews of five of the best compound crossbows for your money.

1. Barnett Jackal Crossbow

Description and features- This is one of the best compound crossbows and is sure to offer you value for your money. It is a military grade crossbow with features including a synthetic cable system, quad limbs, high energy wheels and a 3.5 pound trigger pull that uses ADF (anti-dry fire) MIM (metal injection molding) trigger mechanism. In spite of the fact that The Barnett Jackal Crossbow is a compound crossbow, it has been designed in such a way that it is light weighing in at only 7.7 pounds. It has the amazing power expected of a compound crossbow with a projectile velocity of 315 feet per second. This comes in very handy when hunting large animals such as deer and as the power ensures a swift and successful kill. It measures 35.5 inches length by 26.5 inches width which makes it easy to handle and carry around when not in use.


1. It is very light in terms of weight- this makes it easy to carry around during hunting and also makes it easy to aim at the target.

2. It is easy to use.

3. It has a camouflage paintjob- This is designed to help the hunter blend into the background during the hunting expedition.


The cables are prone to wear and tear after prolonged use. The owner therefore needs to constantly replace them.

2. Barnett Penetrator Crossbow

Description and features- Barnett Archery Company has been manufacturing crossbows for over fifty years and the Penetrator is no doubt one of their finest creation. Some of its features include an ADF-MIM trigger mechanism, twelve inch power stroke and an energy value of 116 foot-pounds. The crossbow has a five to one safety factor which makes it less dangerous to use than other crossbow models. It weighs 8.6 pounds which makes it a little on the heavier side which is to be expected with compound crossbows due to the pulley system. It is slightly larger than the Barnet Jackal model with measurements being 37 inches length by 24 inches width.


1. It is a powerful crossbow with speeds of up to 350 feet per second making it ideal for large animals.

2. It is easy to use.

3. It comes with a five year warranty which serves to assure users that it is truly one of the best crossbows for the money.


1. It is heavy and this makes it tiresome to carry around.

2. The strings can easily snap if they are not properly waxed.

3. Barnett BCX Buck Commander Extreme

Description and features- This is another crossbow that is no doubt worth every penny spent. Its features include a rope cocking device, 19.875 inches distance from one axle to another and a 185 draw weight. It is super lightweight measuring a mere 7.1 pounds. This means that you can run comfortably after your target without getting weighed down by a heavy weapon. The BCX Bick Commander model has one of the highest projectile velocities in the compound crossbow group which is 365 feet per second. This provides the shooter with the speed and force needed to hunt whatever animal even when the animal is far. The speed also increases accuracy of the shoot which improves chances of hitting the target. It comes with a quaver and three arrows to get you started but the arrows are available online and in most archery shops.


1. It is a super light crossbow.

2. It is easy to use and aim.

3. It is powerful and releases high energy and speed projectile arrows.


1. It is loud while shooting.

4. Barnett Ghost 410

Description and features- This is another lightweight crossbow that is one of the best for your money. It uses Carbonlite Riser Technology from Barnett’s very own designers. This technology helps to shift the balance towards the shooters shoulders ensuring more stability which in the long run increases accuracy. Barnett Ghost 410 model also happens to have a five to one safety factor making it safe not only for the user but their hunting companions as well. The distance from one axle to the other is 20 inches which improves the efficiency and ease of use of the crossbow. Finally, it has a 410 feet per second velocity which is very high and therefore increases accuracy and power of release of the arrows. It weighs 7.3 pounds making it one of the lightest of the crossbows described in this list. Its measurements are 34 inches length by 18 inches width.


1. It is very light.

2. Increased accuracy due to weight and release velocity.

3. It is easy to use and users are provided with a comprehensive instruction manual.

4. It is small therefore easy to carry around.


1. It is noisy when fired.

2. Strings are prone to snapping with prolonged use.

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5. TenPoint C13004-7411 Vapor Crossbow

Description and features- This TenPoint crossbow model has a 165 pound draw weight which means that less force is required to bend the limb to generate enough release power. The distance from one axle to another is 17.5 inches which is an advantage to the shooter. It has a velocity of 640 feet per second which gives it enough power to handle large animals such as bears, elk and deer. Its draw weight is 165 pounds and the power stroke is 15.5 inches.


1. It is fast and powerful

2. It is easy to use with a flexible design.

3. It is light making it more accurate and easier to carry around.

4. It is quiet with little or no noise made during firing.


1. No padded sling is included which makes it difficult to carry around.

Reviews of the Best Recurve Crossbows

Recurve crossbows are the second major types of crossbows. They get their name from the fact that the tips of the crossbows edges are curved and pointed away from the shooter. Unlike their compound counterparts, recurve crossbows have linger and more flexible limbs which makes it unnecessary to have a complex pulley system. They are much lighter and this makes them easy to run with and to aim. The weight is however a disadvantage when shooting from a far distance or when the animal being hunted is large. Below are four of the best recurve crossbows for the money.

1. Arrow Precision Inferno Fury Crossbow

Description and features- This crossbow comes with an easy to use quiver and four arrows. The quaver has a padded shoulder string which is super convenient for carrying around and is comfortable because of the padding. The Arrow Precision Inferno Fury has a draw weight of 175 pounds which is just enough for a crossbow of its size and power. Its projectile velocity is 235 feet per hour. Although this is low when compared to the compound crossbow models, it is within the normal range of recurve crossbows. It has a red dot cope which is great for accurate aim and firing. Other features include an ADF trigger mechanism, a padded thumb guard, 10.5 inch power stroke and a rope cocker.


1. It is very light weighing only 8.84 pounds.

2. It is easy to use with minimum training due to the presence of a red dot scope.

3. It is noiseless when fired.


1. Its projectile velocity is low making it only suitable for hunting small animals such as young deer, elk and rabbits.

2. Arrow Precision Inferno Wildfire Precision Recurve Crossbow

Description and features- Comes with four carbon arrows and a quiver with a padded sling for easy carrying around. It has a long limb with measurements of 39.5 inches length by 36.2 inches width. The long limb makes it more compliant and reduces the amount of force needed to pull for maximum release force. It has a noise reduction system that muffles noise made during firing. It has a red and green light scope for accurate aiming. Other features include 225 pound draw weight and 345 feet per second velocity.


1. It is light and easy to use.

2. It is noiseless when fired.

3. It is powerful with strong and fast release.

4. There is better aim while using aided by the scope.


1. Not powerful enough for large animals such as bears.

3. Excalibur Matrix 355 Crossbow

Description and features- Excalibur crossbows are some of the best offering their users value for their money. Some of the features of the Excalibur Matrix 355 model include 355 feet per second velocity, a Quad Lock riser, 240 pounds draw weight and a power stroke of 12.25 inches. The crossbow weighs 5.4 pounds and its measurements are 34.75 inches length by 5 inches width.


1. It is compact and thus easy to use and carry around.

2. It is super light.

3. It is durable.

4. The design reduces recoil and backlash after firing.

5. It is noiseless during firing.


1. The firing mechanism is outdated leaving room for a few errors when it is not handled correctly

4. Excalibur Matrix 405 Mega Crossbow

Description and features- Last but not least is the Excalibur Matrix 405 crossbow model. This beauty has a 13.9 inch power stroke, a 290 pound draw weight and 405 feet per second velocity. It also has a scope for accurate aim. The Matrix 405 model has a cheek piece for comfort and stability when holding the crossbow up for a long time to get the perfect aim. The handle has an ergonomic grip design for comfort and to reduce strain when the crossbow is held for long. Other features include 6.2 pounds weight, R.E.D.S. string suppressors, a rope cocking system and a four arrow quiver.


1. It is not noisy when fired.

2. High speed and power of release.

3. It is easy to use.


1. Length required to pull is long and this might reduce efficiency.

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Bottom Line

A hunter is only as good as his tools. So whether you are a veteran crossbow hunter or simply a rookie in the game it is absolutely important to invest in the best crossbow that you can afford and that is worth every last penny. In addition to making sure that you get yourself the very best crossbow for your money, it is absolutely important to learn how to use it properly for your own safety and for the success of the hunting expedition in general. All the crossbows described above are available on online shopping websites such as Amazon. Choose wisely. Your choice of crossbow will make or break your hunting experience.


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    • VationSays profile imageAUTHOR


      2 years ago

      A deer barbeque will change your mind ;)

    • tonymead60 profile image

      Tony Mead 

      2 years ago from Yorkshire

      I don't understand the need to kill things, and these weapons are not suitable for hunting. Fire them at a target by all means but leave wildlife to prosper. In the wrong hands, they are a tragedy waiting to happen. Sorry no offence meant

    • William227 profile image


      2 years ago

      I also write topic: best crossbow for the money

      Thank you!

    • VationSays profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago

      Glad to be of help :)

      Happy hunting!

    • Blessed Success profile image

      Sandy J Duncan 

      4 years ago from Kansas City, Kansas

      Thanks for this informative article. My daughter was just given a gift certificate for her first bow and this helps understand some of our options!


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