My #1 recommended compound bow for beginners is the Diamond Infinite Edge Pro. The draw weight can be adjusted from 5 to 70 lbs making it the best bow to grow with you.
In this review, I will reveal to you 6 of the best compound bows for beginners. I will go over adjustability, draw weight, draw length, bow size, bow weight, and all the features you need to look for.
Compound bows are mechanical devices that are very complex. You can make some big mistakes if you do not understand these devices and don’t know what to look for. Fortunately, you have access to people like me that will guide you through this process.
I have been shooting with these bows for quite some time. I made some mistakes along the way as I grew as a hunter. It is a steep learning curve if you have to go through this alone.
Do not make the same mistakes as I did because I will allow you to piggyback from my experience.
Compound Bows For Beginners (Summary)
(Best Overall) Diamond Infinite Edge Pro
(Runner Up) Bear Archery Cruzer G2 RTH
(Best Budget) Bear Archery Limitless RTH
(For Stronger Hunters) BlackOut Intrigue XS
(Highest Performer) Diamond Edge 320 R.A.K.
But before you jump headfirst into the product section, let me reveal to you the most essential feature that will make or break your experience as a bowhunter.
Let’s get started.
Adjustability Is The Most Critical Factor For Beginners
The most critical factor for beginners is choosing an adjustable compound bow. When you start out with bow hunting, you will not be very good at it. I hate to say it, but it is true. Your muscles will not be developed enough to shoot highly powered bows. Trust me when I say that you will use muscles that you never knew you had when shooting compound bows.
But guess what? It is ok. There is nothing to be ashamed of. Every one of us will start at a low level and work ourselves up to where we want. It takes constant exercise and practice to shoot your bow more accurately and effectively. Once you get the hang of it and grow stronger, you can adjust your bow’s draw weight to a higher level.
It is here where adjustability is essential. As you grow as a hunter or archer, you want your compound bow to grow along with you. If the draw weight is too high, no problem. You can always adjust it to a lower level and then move it up again when you are ready.
I wish I knew this when I started bowhunting. This fundamental principle would have saved me a lot of money and frustration if I knew about it. But luckily for you, I will guide you through the process so that you do not make the same mistakes as me.
You will not have to buy a higher-powered bow as you grow. Most of the compound bows in this review will have the option to adjust the draw weight according to your strength.
Even though draw weight is very important, it is not the only factor that you should look at. I have compiled a list below of all the nitty-gritty things you need to consider when buying a bow. Once you are familiar with them, you can go on to the first compound bow.
How To Choose The Right Compound Bow For Beginners?
Adjustability is the most important but not the only factor to look at. There are many other aspects of a compound bow that you need to understand to make an informed choice. This section will give you the knowledge required to make an informed decision.
The draw weight is measured in pounds and can range from 10 lbs to over 70 lbs. The draw weight is the amount of force that you need to pull the string back. The higher the draw weight, the more difficult it will be to pull the string. A higher draw weight will also result in a more powerful bow.
How much draw weight do you actually need?
It depends. How much can you pull? What do you plan to do with the compound bow? All of these questions will determine the amount of draw weight that you need for your compound bow. If you are new to compound bow hunting, you might choose a lower draw weight as it is better to go a bit lower than over the top.
You should also be comfortable at pulling the string several times without getting tired. If you cannot pull it more than 5 times in a row, it is too high for you. You should also be capable of holding the drawn position for at least 30 seconds. Sometimes you need to aim for a while before you can allocate your target.
Below is a short summary of the draw weight that should get according to your own weight, gender, and age:
|Body Type||Draw Weight|
|Larger frame women & small frame men||40-50 lbs.|
|Majority of men||55-65 lbs.|
|Larger men||60-70 lbs.|
You can also improve this rating by regularly exercising your arms and back muscles. I always like to be conservative when hunting animals. I like the bow to be efficient, and I do not prefer to injure animals. It is always better to go slightly above in the required draw weight than below.
|Game Animal||Min Draw Weight|
|Deer hunting||40 lbs|
You should also make sure to know the minimum legal draw weight for your area. Some states require at least 30 lbs for hunting deer. The practical minimum draw weight to kill an animal can also be influenced by the shot placement, distance, arrow weight, and arrowhead design.
The draw length is how far you can pull the string back to your chin which is positioned at your body’s middle. The draw length is important because it determines the length required to shoot comfortably and more efficiently.
How do you determine the draw length?
It is straightforward, and all you need is a measuring tape and maybe someone to help you measure. Stand up straight and stretch your arms out wide so that your body looks like a “T.” Open up your hands and stretch your fingers out. Do not make fists.
Take the measurement from the tip of your middle finger of your hand and measure it until you reach the tip of your opposite hand. Take the measurement and subtract 15” from it, and then divide it by two. This new measurement is your draw weight. Here is a friendly draw length calculator that you can use.
Arrow speed is measured in fps (feet per second) and indicates how fast the arrow will travel. It is essential to choose the ideal range of arrow speed so that it is not too slow or too fast. If the speed is too fast, your accuracy will diminish. If the arrow speed is too slow, you will not be able to effectively take down an animal. The weight and type of arrow will also have an impact on its use in hunting.
For deer hunting, you want anything between 260-270 fps. For larger animals such as moose, elk, or bear, you should aim for 300 fps. Any speed more than 330 will start to affect your accuracy, which is not ideal.
Let off is measured in percentages. It is the reduction in draw weight required to hold the string back in a stable position. For instance, a bow with a draw weight of 70 lbs and a let-off of 85% will only require around 10 lbs to hold the string while being pulled back. The higher the let-off, the easier it is to maintain the string in a stable position.
Axle-to-axle length (ATA length)
The ATA length (cam-to-cam length) can also be referred to as the bow length. The bow’s size has nothing to do with the archer or hunter but more to do with the function. For hunting, I would recommend a shorter bow. They are more compact and maneuverable.
I would recommend a longer bow for range shooting as it will be more accurate at longer distances. Your shot will be more stable and accurate, but the bow will also be heavier.
The brace height is the distance between the bow’s handle and the string when the bow is in a rested position. The brace height can have a significant effect on the shooting performance of the bow. A shorter brace height means that the arrow will be connected to the string for a more extended period of time.
The shorter brace height will give the arrow more velocity but will magnify the imperfections of the bow. Imperfections like a poorly tuned arrow rest will make the shot less accurate. So, for beginners, I will recommend a longer brace height.
Eye dominance is essential to determine which eye will have to look through the peephole. You can test your eye dominance by using a sheet of paper. Cut out a small hole in the middle of the paper and find a spot or mark on the wall. You can also use a nail or screw that was drilled into the wall.
Stretch the piece of paper over the mark on the wall and locate it with both eyes open. You can close one eye once you can see the mark on the wall through the hole in the paper. Try testing both eyes, and the eye that sees the marker is the dominant one. You should try and aim with this eye when shooting.
What should you do when you are left-eyed and right-handed?
The video above will show you what to do when you are in this type of scenario.
Left-handed vs. right-handed
You can use any type of orientation when it comes to bow hunting, but efficiency is more important at the end of the day. If you are right-handed, I would recommend finding a right-handed bow, and the same goes for left-handed.
Choosing the right type will ensure that you shoot more efficiently and utilize your full draw weight capacity.
Compound bow weight
Do not confuse the weight of the bow with the draw weight. They are entirely different measurements where they have nothing to do with each other. Bow weight is not that important and will not have such a significant impact on your performance. A lighter bow will only make it easier to carry on those long hunting trips.
Best Compound Bows For Beginners (6 Products Reviewed)
This section will give you 6 of the best compound bows for beginners. Make sure to choose an adjustable bow. Let’s start with my favorite bow, which was the Diamond Infinite Edge Pro.
#1 Diamond Infinite Edge Pro (Best Overall)
- Draw weight: 5-70 lbs
- Draw length: 13”-31”
- ATA length: 31.5”
- Bow weight: 3.2 lbs
- Arrow Speed: 310 fps
Can you remember when I gave you the pep talk about adjustability? Well, this is the compound bow that fits that factor perfectly. You can start with a draw weight of as low as 5 lbs and work your way up to 70 lbs. Even when you reach 50 lbs, you will still be able to take down larger animals. To top it off, you can also launch arrows of speeds up to 310 fps.
The draw length also starts from 13” and goes up to 31”, making it very versatile. The Axle to axle length is also around 31”, making the bow very compact. The Diamond Infinite Edge Pro is also relatively lightweight, making it ideal for longer hunting trips. The product also has both left and right-hand models. The bow is also deadly silent with string dampeners.
The bow also comes with all the accessories that you need to start hunting. You will get a 3-pin sight, a whisker biscuit arrow rest (best for beginners), a 5 arrow quiver, a bow stabilizer, and a wrist strap. The wrist strap is an extra safety feature that prevents the bow from leaving your hand if you should ever lose your grip.
This is the only compound bow you ever need to buy. Its adjustability made it suitable for beginners and experienced hunters alike, making it my favorite.
Cons: Not much to say here. It has everything you will need.
#2 Bear Archery Cruzer G2 RTH (Runner Up)
- Draw weight: 5-70 lbs
- Draw length: 12″-30″
- ATA length: 30″
- Bow weight: 3 lbs
If you did not like my first option (maybe you did not like the brand), this bow from Bear Archery will also do. It has very similar specs as my #1 recommended bow. This product is also in the same price class as the Diamond Infinite Edge Pro.
This bow also has an extensive draw weight. The draw weight ranges from 5 lbs up to 70 lbs making it very adjustable. The draw length is also very adjustable and ranges from 12” to 30”. The arrows will also go for speeds up to 315 fps, making it deadly.
This product is also very light, with a weight of 3.2 lbs for those extra long hunting trips. The bow length is also 30”, making it compact enough for treestand hunters and those that prefer tight areas. The sound suppression system is also efficient at making this bow as silent as it can be.
Inside the package, you will get a whisker biscuit arrow rest, a 4-pin sight, a 5 arrow quiver, and a stabilizer.
This compound bow is the runner-up on my #1 recommended product because of its adjustability. This bow is suitable for everyone regardless of their experience or skill level.
Cons: Not much to say here.
#3 Bear Archery Limitless RTH (Best Budget)
- Draw weight: 25-50 lbs
- Draw length: 19″- 29″
- ATA length: 28”
This compound bow is the best for hunters that do not want to spend a fortune on compound bows. If you have a tight budget or you are just starting out, then the Bear Archery Limitless RTH is a good option.
This bow is not as adjustable as the Diamond Infinite. However, it can still be adjusted to suit hunters at any experience level. Its draw weight range is not as high and ranges from 25 to 50 lbs. Most beginners will start with a draw weight of around 20 lbs, so 25 lbs are not that bad. However, the bow is limited to 50 lbs, so that it is on the brink of being suitable for larger animals.
The speed is also not as high and can only reach 265 fps. I will only recommend this bow for small to medium-sized game when you put everything together. The bow also has a string dampener making it very silent. It also comes with accessories such as a 3-pin sight, whisker biscuit arrow rest, and a 3-arrow quiver. You do not get a wrist strap.
It is an inexpensive compound bow that is best suited for hunting small to medium-sized animals. It can also be adjusted, making it suitable for hunters at all skill levels.
Cons: The adjustability is limited, and it does not come with a wrist strap.
#4 BlackOut Intrigue XS (For Stronger Hunters)
- Draw weight: 31-70 lbs
- Draw length: 19″-30″
- ATA length: 30″
- Bow weight: 4.5 lbs
This compound bow is another inexpensive option that is more based on performance and power. It is also adjustable but is more shifted to a higher draw weight. This bow has a draw weight that can go from 31 lbs up to 70 lbs. It is still suitable for beginners, but I would recommend this bow to hunters with a larger frame.
The draw length is about standard and ranges from 19” to 30”. The bow is also compact enough for you to hunt in tight areas. It has an 80% let-off making it so much easier to hold on to the string when fully drawn. The bow also has a speed of up to 315 fps.
If you are also finicky when it comes to a bow sight, this bow will be well suited. The sight has 5 pins making it easier for those hunters that want to be more precise. The bow also makes use of a whisker biscuit arrow rest that is best for beginners. You also get a quiver that can hold 5 arrows and a good bow stabilizer. It also makes use of a wrist band for safety reasons.
This is a good bow that is best suited for hunters that are after more power and speed. It is also adjustable and suited for beginners.
Cons: Not suited for teenagers.
#5 Diamond Edge 320 R.A.K. (Highest Performer)
- Draw weight: 7-70 lbs
- Draw length: 15″-31″
- ATA length: 31.5″
- Bow weight: 3.6 lbs
- Arrow Speed: 320 fps
If you liked my first option, which was the Diamond Infinite Edge Pro, but you would like to take things a bit further, then you might love this version as well. This version is bigger and comes with a faster arrow speed 320 fps. It is also essential to keep in mind that it is also more expensive.
The draw weight is also very adjustable and can be suited for hunters in all skill levels. The draw weight range from 7 to 70 lbs. The draw length is also desirable and ranges from 15” to 31” in length. The axle-to-axle length is 31.5”, making the bow very compact when shooting.
The bow also has a let-off of around 85%, making it much easier to hold the bow stable while fully drawn. What you will get is the 3-pin tundra sight along with an arrow rest, stabilizer, 5 arrow side quiver, string lube, and a wristband.
This is a top-of-the-range bow that is very adjustable, has high arrow speeds, and is suited for hunters at any experience level. This is also the highest performing bow.
Cons: This bow has a higher price tag.
#6 Genesis Mini Compound Bow (Best For Youth)
- Draw weight: 6-12 lbs
- ATA length: 29.5”
- Bow weight: 2 lbs
The Genesis Mini is the best compound bow for children and pre-schoolers. Which father does not want to introduce their boy or girl to the world of bowhunting? You cannot always allow them to hunt with you, but you can prepare and train them to shoot a bow early.
Forget about arrow speeds and performance. You want a bow that has a very low draw weight but still takes the form and principles of a modern compound bow with it. The Genesis mini has a draw weight that ranges from 6 to 12 lbs. The bow’s size can also be compared to professional compound bows with 29.5” from ATA.
The bow does not come with fancy accessories such as an arrow rest, bow sight, and a quiver. This product gives your child the bare necessities to learn the basics of shooting a bow without distractions.
This bow is ideal for children to learn the basics and slowly introduce them to bow hunting. This product is not intended for hunting.
Cons: It does not have many features, but it is all you need for youth.
Compound Bow Anatomy & Parts
This section of the article will help you a lot if you are new to bowhunting. You will learn about all the parts that make up a compound bow so that you understand each part’s name and function.
The riser is the middle part of the bow that acts as the foundation for most attachments. It contains the grip, arrow rest, bow sight, and stabilizer. Most risers are made from either aluminum or carbon fiber to make the bow strong and lightweight. The limbs are also attached to the riser.
The limbs are attached at the top and bottom of the riser. They are flexible and are used to store the bow’s energy when the string is pulled back. The cams and string are also attached at the end of the limbs.
The cam is the part of the bow that makes it a compound bow. They are round, rotating mechanical pieces located at the end of each limb. They transform rotary motion into linear motion. Cams are manipulating the draw weight and are responsible for the let-off.
Cams make it much easier for hunters to shoot more effectively with bows with the higher draw weight. They make the bow more stable and more comfortable to shoot. Cams also give you more time to aim without putting too much pressure on your back and arm muscles.
The bowstring is the part of the bow that joins the 2 ends of the limbs and is responsible for launching the arrow. The d-loop and peephole will also form part of the string.
The cables are what connect the cams together. The cables are also used to do most of the work when the string is pulled back and are also used to store some of the energy. The cables are also responsible for pulling the limbs together. The combination of the cams and cables makes for a more stable shot.
The cable guard is a rod-shaped device that keeps the cable away from the riser and the center of the bow. This device also helps so that the cables do not come into contact with the arrow.
This part is attached to the cable guard and helps to keep the cables together so that they are out of the arrow’s path when fired.
The silencer will absorb some of the vibrations that come from the string when released. The compound bow will shoot more silently when the vibration is reduced.
The grip is located on the riser and helps you to hold onto the bow. The grip helps to improve your grip (as the name says) and to keep the bow stable before, during, and after the shot is taken.
This is the part of the bow where the arrow will rest upon before the shot is taken. There are many types of arrow rests, which include drop-away arrow rests, whisker biscuits, etc.
The sight is also attached to the riser. Along with the peep sight’s help, the bow sight will help you aim at your target. You get many different types of bow sights which include single-pin bow sights and multi-pin bow sight.
Some of the multi-pin sights are fixed while others are adjusted. The adjusted pin sights can be used to set each pin to a specific distance. For instance, the first pin will be set at 10 yards, while the second one will be set at 20 yards, and so forth.
The peep sight is located on your string and is ring-shaped. You will have to look through both the peep sight and the bow sight to aim at your target when the string is fully drawn.
The d-loop is located on the string and is most commonly used if you plan to use a bow release, a mechanical device that helps you pull the string back.
The stabilizer is located at the front part of your bow. This device helps to keep your bow stable while aiming and also helps to reduce noise. This part is optional.
Additional Bow Hunting Gear
You do not need any of the following accessories to hunt or shoot successfully. They are only there to make your life easier.
Quivers are very useful for storing your arrows. They also come in different sizes and can range from 3 to 5 arrow quivers. Mosthttps://onlinebarracks.com/best-compound-bow-sights-for-hunting/ of the compound bows in this review will have a quiver attached to them.
You also have the option to get a quiver that is not attached to the bow. There are many other options available such as a hip quiver and a back quiver.
A bow release is a handy device that helps you to pull the string back and to release the arrow. They are especially useful for hunters with weak hands. This device will make use of a hook that will be attached to the d-loop of your string.
An arrow is a weapon that is used in all types of bows. They have a long thin shaft, a sharp point, fletching, and a nock. You can also attach a broadhead to an arrow to make it more effective at taking down deer.
Broadheads are attached to the frontend of the arrow. They are sharp, heavy, and used to penetrate the skin and flesh of the animal. Broadheads also come in different sizes and shapes. Some broadheads are fixed, while others are mechanical.
Compound vs. Recurve Bow
There are two types of bows that you need to be familiar with. The types include the compound and the recurve bow. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, and it is up to you to decide what you are comfortable with. I have also written guides on inexpensive crossbows and crossbows used for deer hunting.
The compound bow is a modernized version of the recurve bow and uses cams and cables to be more effective at hunting. With compound bows, your shot will also be more stable as it uses something called “let off.” It will take a significant amount of force to pull the string back until it reaches a certain point where most of the draw weight will dissipate, making it easier to hold the string in position.
- It requires less upper body strength to use.
- Are more powerful.
- You can add more attachments to them.
- They are more stable and easier to use.
- More maintenance is required.
- More complex.
- Heavier than recurve bows.
The recurve bow is a much simpler design than its compound sibling. They are relatives to the earliest versions of the bow and takes more time to master. They do not have any mechanical parts and only consist of the limbs and the string. Some modern recurve bows will allow you to add extra accessories such as a bow sight, making them suitable for deer hunting.
- Much lighter than compound bows.
- Much less maintenance.
- Less complicated and moving parts.
- Takes more practice and skill to shoot.
- It requires more upper body strength to draw and hold the string.
Q: Can children shoot with compound bows?
Yes, they can, but it depends on the bow. Most children do not have the physical strength to draw back the string of compound bows, so you need to make sure that the draw weight is less than 15 lbs.
Q: Can you use compound bows for hunting?
Compound bows are by far the most effective and popular for hunting. The reduced draw weight makes them more stable for aiming, and they are more powerful and compact.
Q: Men vs. women’s compound bows?
Men and women can use the exact same compound bow if you can adjust the draw weight. In most cases, men will have a stronger upper body than women making it easier for them to shoot bows with the higher draw weight. Don’t let this assumption fool you. I have seen women pulling a 70 lbs compound bow with ease, so there are always exceptions.
Q: What draw weight is best for beginners?
There is not really such a thing as best draw weight for beginners. Some beginners will pull more than others making it hard to pinpoint the ideal draw weight. Instead, find a bow that allows the draw weight to be adjusted as your strength and skill set improves.
Q: What arrow speed is best?
Try to aim for speeds between 260 fps to 310 fps. The size of the animal will also determine the required speed of the bow. For deer, you need 260-270 fps. For larger animals, 300 fps is ideal.
Many things can go wrong when choosing a compound bow, especially if you are a beginner. Some inexperienced newbies will jump headfirst into buying the strongest compound bow possible only to realize that they are not strong enough to even use it.
Some bows also do not offer any type of adjustability, and you need to buy all of the accessories separately.
Do not fall for this trap.
My #1 recommended compound bow is the Diamond Infinite Edge Pro because of its adjustability and features. You can start with a draw weight of as low as 5 lbs and work your way up to 70 lbs as you get stronger.
This product also comes with a quiver, stabilizer, bow sight, noise dampeners, and some string lube.
Many other bows were also good. If you are a beginner, this article will give you all the information you need to successfully land your first compound bow without looking back.
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