The Best Compound Bow for the Money You Want to Spend
What is compound bow and how to choose the best compound bow for the money? Bows have come to permeate and inform our cultural consciousness, and have come to be associated with heroes and virtue. It’s with a bow that Odysseus slays the suitors which plagued his wife Penelope, harassed his son Telemachus, and reclaimed his throne in Homer’s The Odyssey. Perhaps most famously, it’s with a bow that Robin Hood, Little John, Will Scarlet and the rest of the Merry Men took on the Sherriff of Nottingham and performed all the feats which even today stand out in the public memory as one of the quintessential exemplars of civil disobedience and roguish rebellion.
The incident in which Robin Hood splits an arrow to land squarely at the center of a bull’s-eye remains one of the most iconic images associated with both a character who’s made his name in large part by standing for truth and justice in the face of inequality and a weapon which has long stood as a great equalizer. This same ideology has been extended—for better or for worse—in the way in which Plains Indians have represented themselves and been represented on the whole in Western civilization. Most recently, the heroine of the popular young adult novel The Hunger Games, the heroine Katniss Everdeen likewise uses a bow and once again stands for the sort of virtuosity which it has come to symbolize.
This, in turn, has sparked newfound interest in bows and archery, and in compound bows in particular. Whether just starting out or looking to upgrade the bow you have, here’s a quick overview of what a compound bow is, how to choose the right one for you, and a look at five premium choices for beginners and experienced archers alike.
What is a compound bow?
Simply put, a compound bow is type of modern bow which uses a series of pulleys and levers as well as a variety of composite materials. If you’ve seen competitive archery competitions, either at the collegiate level or in the Olympics, there’s a good chance that you’ve seen at least some version of a modern compound bow.
From the first bows to the Roman bow, longbow, crossbow and so on, archery has a rich history of innovation. In that sense, the compound bow, may be seen as simply the latest iteration of innovation. A compound bow may, at first glance, seen like a “complex bow,” owing to the intricate manner in which it’s put together and the many different instruments which go into and make up its construction. The central component of a compound bow, known as a riser, is traditionally rigid and sturdy, so as to provide structural support and ensure that the bow does not snap, bend, or meet with other such difficulties when drawing back an arrow. Extending from the riser in either direction are “limbs,” that is, the two opposite ends of a bow, and it is here, in various places, that the levers, pulleys, cams and drawstrings are attached. It’s this setup which allows for this bow’s consistent performance and strong, whistling release.
There are several pros and cons to choosing a best compound bow for the money, including:
• The cam system allows for more energy to be stored in the drawback process, allowing for crisper and more powerful releases
• The design of the cams can influence the acceleration of the arrow; a hard cam will allow for more acceleration than a slow cam
• Compound bows are resistant to temperature changes, and the way in which they’re constructed allows for efficient drawback power while keeping the limbs at a horizontal angle
• As the number of mechanical parts in any given device increases, so too does the possibility of one or more components failing—this is true of compound bows
• Likewise, with the increased number of parts, there is an increased chance that firing could accidentally damage a component of the bow
• Some shooters have reported that the low weight of the bow (which may otherwise be counted as a pro) can lead to some to suffer a mistake in form when shooting
How to choose the right bow for you
The bows listed below range from beginner bows to advanced, competition-level bows. Likewise, some bows are better suited for recreational use, and others are finely tuned for competition. Know thyself, and act (and by) accordingly.
Best Compound Bow for the Money – Comparison Guide and Key
axle to axle
|Bear Archery Brave 3 Right Hand Bow||Right Hand||26"||6"||70%||21" - 23"||24 - 29 lb||$60~$120|
|Genesis Original Bow||Right/Left Hand||35-1/2"||7-5/8"||0||15"-30"||10-20 lbs.||$156.74|
|Martin Threshold Bow||Right Hand||36.75"||7"||75%||25" - 31"||40 - 50 lb||$193.94 - $269.99|
|Infinite Edge Bow Package||Right/Left Hand||31"||7"||75%||13"-30"||50 - 70 lbs||$353.47|
|PSE Brute X Compound Bow||Right Hand||31"||7-1/4"||75%||25"-30"||50 - 70 lbs||$375.00 - $512.33|
Bear Archery Brave 3 Right Hand Bow
|If you’re a parent with a child interested in archery and looking for a good deal for the money you spend, the Bear Archery Brave 3 Right Hand Bow Set could be just the set you’re looking for. At just over $65, this is a good bow to buy to allow your young one wants to try and emulate Robin Hood or Katniss without breaking the bank. Featuring durable composite limbs and an equally-strong Riser, this a good, sturdy, starter bow for young archers ages 8 and up. One potential drawback is that this design is geared towards right handed archers only, so if you’re shopping for a lefty, you may want to look elsewhere. On the technical side, the Bear Archery Brave 3 boasts a respectable Axle-to-axle length of 26 inches, a draw length of 15 to 20 inches, and a draw weight of 15 to 20 pounds.|
In addition, the Brace height for the Bear Archery Brave 3 set is 6 inches. With a let off draw weight of 65%, it’s light for young archers to operate while still weighty enough to allow archers in training to begin building up their muscles and get used to the difference between holding and draw weight.
There are also variations on this model which are suited for older, more experienced archers. As the name might suggest, this bow has become something of a weapon of choice for those who might be interested in putting their archery talents to use for some recreational hunting. This is where the strong drawback and release is especially prominent.
All in all, whether you’re looking to break into the archery game or for a bow up to the task of hunting some game, check out the Bear Archery Brave 3 Right Hand Bow Set.
Genesis Original Bow
|As the name might suggest, this is the kind of bow you want to buy if you’re at the beginning of your archery career. This is strictly a starter bow. It features (by design) a limited number of cams, pulleys and other design elements. This results in a highly streamlined bow, and this in turn makes the Genesis Original Bow a far easier compound bow to load, draw back and fire than most others of its kind. That being said, that results in a limited amount of options and a lessened degree of force and accuracy than might otherwise be expected by a bow of this kind.The Genesis Original Bow has some professional backing, as it’s the Official Bow of the National Archery in the Schools Program. Fashioned from 6061-T6 aluminum, this bow is lightweight, streamlined, and, while limited, can make a great first bow for budding young archers.|
Martin Threshold Bow
|The Martin Threshold Bow is yet another solid starter bow. Continuing the theme here of good, lightweight drawback weight, the Martin Threshold Bow has a let off threshold of 65%. With a brace height 6.9 inches and an axle length of 36.75 inches, this is a starter bow through and through. It features a very streamlined, almost skeletal design, which is good if you’re looking for a simple bow; if you’re searching for a more complicated, high-end model, however, you may want to check out other bows on this list first.|
Infinite Edge Bow Package
|While it leaves a little to be desired in terms of aesthetics, the Infinite Edge Bow Package more than makes up for by standing as one of the better bows for adults on this list. With a draw weight of 50lbs, there’s some serious power associated with this model. The pulleys and cams work well, and the model distributes that 50lbs in such a way as to feel natural and a bit lighter than its actual weight, all the while retaining the full punch which its drawback power implies. If you’re looking for a bow with a little extra power for less, give this a look.|
PSE Brute X Compound Bow
|PSE Brute X Compound Bow is a powerful bow which translates 60 to 70lbs of drawback weight into some excellent acceleration and searing arrow shots. As opposed to the some of the more streamlined starter bows on this list, this is a bow worthy of an experienced archer, and one with a good deal to fix, fiddle with and customize to your delight. In addition, this model features an extremely rigid riser, which helps contribute to the overall performance and power of this model. Blending brute force with brilliant accuracy, this is compound bow fit for a pro.|
Above are some points regarding how to choose the best compound bow for the money. I hope you enjoy this article and find the one suit you. If you have time, just check out the other compound bow reviews we have listed in this blog.