What is the best crossbow for deer hunting? My top pick is the CenterPoint Sniper 370 Crossbow. It’s lightweight, highly durable, and fully adjustable.
Last update on 2020-09-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Crossbows have become in-demand since the hunting laws were changed in 2013. With the proliferation of a variety of brands in the market, selecting the best crossbow for deer hunting that suits your needs and is worth the expense can be difficult.
But do not worry because I am here to help you select the perfect one based on their standout features, prices, and user reviews.
Reviews of the Best Crossbows for Deer Hunting
1. CenterPoint Sniper 370 Crossbow
The CenterPoint Sniper 370 Crossbow is a well-designed weapon for hunters who like tress or blind stand. It has the capacity to hit the vital organs of prey with accuracy. This crossbow is excellent for big game performances.
The standout features of this product are its pass-through foregrip and fully-adjustable tactical stock which support different shooting styles. It has composite quad limbs and a precision CNC-machined cam system that provide high-speed capacity.
This highly-acclaimed “Great Buy” winner comes at a very reasonable price. It is an excellent option for those who want to pursue archery sport without shelling big amount of money. The package is a complete beginner’s dream which includes a crossbow, four-arrow quiver, illuminated 4 x 32 scope, three 20 inch carbon crossbow bolts, cocking rope, shoulder sling, warranty card, and owner’s manual.
Its adjustable forearm and tactical stock make shooters find the perfect stature to aim targets accurately. Its 13.5” power stroke combined with 185 draw results to a lightning speed of about 370 fps.
You may observe that it does not exactly feel as solid as more expensive crossbows and it feels a bit heavy in the front; nevertheless, the speed, accuracy, and value for money that the Centerpoint Sniper 370 offers are enough to make it the ideal choice for certain buyers.
- Very fast speed
- Lightweight and durable
- Fully adjustable stock and forearm
- Has auto-safety trigger and anti-dry Fire mechanism
- Flimsy feel
- Bit front heaviness
2. Barnett Recruit Tactical Compound Crossbow
The Barnett Recruit Tactical Compound Crossbow is best for young archers and hunters with smaller frames including women. Its 130 pounds weight draw makes it easier for young enthusiasts to cock the crossbows by themselves. It offers speed and power.
It weighs about 6.5 pounds so it is convenient to carry anywhere. What makes this product standout among its competition is the adjustable butt stock that offers more customization for shooters. Another salient feature of Barnett Recruit that keeps fingers and thumbs below string path is the pass through the fore grip.
The price is reasonable for a package of one crossbow, three pieces of 20” arrows, one quiver, one premium red dot sight, and assembly tools.
This crossbow allows crank cocking device integration. The compact size of Barnett Recruit allows easy handling and speed which is excellent for young hunters. This beginner’s crossbow offers 300 fps and 80 foot pounds of energy which makes hunting more exciting.
- Compact and lightweight
- Easy to cock
- Ideal for shooters with smaller frames
- Limited numbers of arrows (3 pieces only)
3. Barnett Ghost 410 CRT Crossbow
The Barnett Ghost 410 CRT Crossbow is considered one of the fastest crossbows in the market today. With its 7.3 pounds weight and 19 7/8″ Axle to Axle size, Barnett Ghost 410 is indeed the newest game changer.
This all-black crossbow looks stylish and impressive. Ghost 410 maintained the impressive feature of its predecessor Ghost 400 – the Barnett’s Patented Carbonite Riser Technology (CRT).
It has an ultra-light, super strong Carbonite Riser which provides a perfect balance of speed. Another standout feature is its 5-to-1 safety control. Other essential features of this product are:
- Finger Guard and Pass-Through Foregrip
- Custom Composite Laminated Limbs
- CNC Machined Aluminum Flight Track
- CNC Machined 7/8” Picatinny Rail
- CROSSWIRE® String and Cable System
- Cocking Device
It’s more expensive than the other brands but the versatility, functionality, accuracy and safety that this crossbow provides makes it an amazing choice.
The package contains a compound crossbow, three 22” Easton bolts (with field points), padded sling, quick detach quiver, extra recoil pad, rope cocking device, 3 x 32 four-reticle illuminated crossbow scope, sample of string wax, assembly tools, owner’s manual and warranty card.
Its compact and lightweight construction prevents arm fatigue. It is easy to carry anywhere you want. The well-balanced build shifts the weight to the user’s shoulder and allows smooth draws. The riser’s carbon material enhances stability as well as safety for archers whether they are beginners or professionals.
The safety switch engages automatically and does not release the arrow unless it is properly secured. Its anti-dry firing device offers protection against misfiring incidents. Ghost 410 crossbow’s maximum speed capacity of 410 fps helps you target a moving object.
This powerful crossbow can shoot any kind of target with its 185-pound draw weight. It can generate up to 150 pounds of energy. The rope cocking mechanism ensures smooth draw and release performance while eliminating jerky motions that may affect your accuracy level.
- Compact and Lightweight
- Accuracy exceeds 70 yards
- Provides strong power to knock down prey or any living creature
- 5 year limited warranty
- It is a little bit noisy due to lack of dampening system feature
- Needs regular string waxing to prevent problems on serving separation
4. TenPoint Venom Crossbow
The TenPoint Venom Crossbow can be your best shooting weapon if you are a target shooter or hunter.
The standout feature of this product is the combination of a 19.5-inch woven carbon fiber barrel and TenPoint’s well-known FSB stock. It provides smooth path for the arrow and prevents dangerous shots.
This crossbow has everything you need for hunting expedition from ACU draw 50 system to mounted scope. It has HE cam system which ensures powerful and smooth draws. Its 3.5-pound trigger can be easily pulled by the user with enough resistance to prevent accidental misfires. Its lightweight feature prevents hands to wobble or cause arms fatigue which can keep you from aiming perfect shots.
The market price of this stylish-looking Venom crossbow is not low. It is pricey compared to other brands. However, its high-performance, sturdiness and well-balanced construction are worth the expense. It measures 17.6 inches (axle to axle) and about 34.6 inches long. It is safe for adults and kids archers at any skill level.
It is the ideal crossbow for small or confined hunting blinds because of its compact design. The camouflage, mossy-oak print design helps you blend better with the surroundings. Its “bull pup” offers comfort and safety as you aim for perfect shots. Other safety features include dry fire inhibitor and safety switch.
- Fires up to 372 feet per second
- Ultra-compact and lightweight design
- Provides smooth performance due to its ACU50 draw system feature
- Easy to set-up
- Package comes with Bowjax dampening kit which eliminates string noise
- More expensive compared to other brands
- Has safety switch which creates audible click (hunters must be aware to prevent startling prey)
- Scope is accurate up to 40 yards only but not in long range sightings
5. Excalibur Matrix 380 Crossbow
The Excalibur Matrix 380 is a compact and powerful recurve crossbow. It offers better arrow speed performance, functionality, and reliability.
The standout feature of this crossbow is the Excalibur’s compact Tact-Zone scope which provides lightning fast ability. This scope is adjustable between 275 fps to 410 fps. It has multiple reticles with green and red rheostat illuminations.
The rope-cocking aid device keeps crossbow draws smooth with minimal effort. The safety switch easily disengages whenever you are ready to shoot and engage securely whenever the crossbow is cocked.
The price may seem a bit expensive but the features and functionality of product make it worth the expense. This recurve crossbow weighs 260 pounds. Each easy-to-open package includes Excalibur crossbow, crossbow kit, Tact-Zone Scope (with 30mm rings), a four-arrow quiver (with bracket), four Diablo arrows, four 150 grain field points, R.E.D.S. suppressors and rope cocking aid.
This Excalibur model is especially-designed for hunters who want to hunt in ground blinds. It is totally blackened out to prevent light reflection which scares prey. Its accuracy is up to 70 yards. Trigger pull is gentle and smooth.
- Compact recurve design
- Fires up to 380 fps
- Strikes target with 112 pounds of kinetic energy
- 5-year warranty for manufacturing defects. After this period, Excalibur can extend it to a lifetime warranty (upon discretion)
- Scope illumination is slightly darker
How To Choose The Best Crossbow
Selecting a bow (either a crossbow, compound bow, takedown recurve bow, etc.) can be difficult especially if it is your first crossbow. There are essential factors that you need to consider before purchasing the crossbow which you believe is perfect for your passion or hobby.
First, you need to know your purpose in buying it. Are you going to use it for hunting or for target shooting? There are some important things you need to know between these two purposes.
For target shooting, you may consider buying a lighter bow because you are usually in a stationary position. A heavier crossbow is not ideal for you. As you go along and become more serious in your hobby or sport, you can opt for more durable, quality and expensive crossbows.
For hunting purposes, it is necessary to invest in the best weapon. You need to consider the crossbow’s velocity, accuracy and killing capacity or impact. It is also important to select a compact and lightweight weapon that will be easy to carry during trekking.
Here are some of vital qualities that you need to consider before buying your first crossbow.
The velocity of a crossbow is measured in fps (feet-per-second) and refers to the travel speed of the arrow within the first 20-30 yards. Take note that velocity begins to diminish beyond the aforementioned distance.
You can go for a 200 fps minimum velocity. Remember that actual velocity is determined by crossbow’s draw weight together with your arrow’s weight. A lighter arrow travels faster than a heavier arrow.
Crossbow Draw Weight
The draw weight is the amount of force needed to cock the crossbow. It is indicated by the rigidity of the limbs of the prod. As the draw weight increases, the harder it becomes to draw the string. It also results in a more efficient arrow.
As a beginner, go for 150 pounds draw weight especially if you plan to hunt with other shooters. Lighter draw weights are for target shooting practices only. So, if you aim for more, start with this weight.
It is the travel distance of the string from its initial loose position until it reaches the latched and cocked. Many crossbows have 10” -14” strokes. There is a belief that powerful arrow shots come from a higher power stroke.
It is true but you do not be obsessed with the thought that you always need to make the longest power stroke to make powerful aims. It is more important to make sure that your stroke is properly adjusted on the crossbow’s draw weight.
It is the energy from a crossbow string to the arrow during release. It is related to power stroke and draw weight. The longer the power stroke and higher the draw weight, the more powerful the arrow becomes because of the energy transferred to it. The energy is also responsible for the speed of the arrow and its trajectory.
Another factor that should be considered is the style. Crossbow has two primary styles – compound and recurve. The main characteristics that differentiate them are the mechanisms used in string draw and in the limbs.
The advantages of compound crossbows over recurve are the following:
- The design of the compound is more complex which can lead to a potential malfunction of some parts.
- Changing the string is more complicated than a compound crossbow.
- A compound crossbow is more expensive.
- A compound crossbow is heavier than recurve.
I, therefore, recommend beginners to stick to recurve crossbow until the time comes that they are more confident in their skills and understand how this bow works best.
My Choice for the Best Crossbow for Deer Hunting
At this point, I believe that you have an idea which among the above-mentioned crossbows is perfect for you.
My personal favorite is the CenterPoint Sniper 370, due to being durable and lightweight, and having a fully adjustable stock and forearm. All these attributes make it a quality, versatile and powerful tool, and my choice for the best crossbow for deer hunting.