Whether you’re a veteran target shooter, a seasoned hunter, or new to both, quality and reliable best crossbows for 2021 is the way to go. Just like everything nowadays, crossbows have received major upgrades and improvements in recent years, and a lot of manufacturing companies keep setting the bar higher with each year passing by.
As a result, there’s an abundance of options available on the market today, and choosing the right one for you can be a challenge, especially if you’re new to the game.
But don’t click the panic button just yet, we got you all covered as we did extensive research and put together a list of the 10 best crossbows money can buy.
We chose the following products by keeping an eye on build quality, performance, price, as well as user experience. So, if you’re interested in buying the crossbow that is best suited for your experience level and your needs, stay tuned!
- 1 Best Crossbows 2021
- 1.1 1. Barnett Jackal Package: The best Crossbow for the money
- 1.2 2. Wicked Ridge M-370: Best Crossbow for Hunting
- 1.3 3. Excalibur Assassin 420 TD: Best overall
- 1.4 4. BearX Constrictor Stoke: Best crossbow under 600
- 1.5 5. Killer Instinct Swat XP: Hunting Crossbow
- 1.6 6. Barnett TS390 Tactical Series:
- 1.7 7. Scorpyd Aculeus:
- 1.8 8. Wicked Ridge RDX400: Best crossbow for deer hunting
- 1.9 9. TenPoint Turbo GT:
- 1.10 10. CenterPoint Gladiator Whisper 405:
- 2 Tips on How to Choose the best Crossbow:
- 2.1 Should I buy the most expensive crossbow?
- 2.2 Weight of the bow matters
- 2.3 Accuracy & how to improve it
- 2.4 Quiet and a safe crossbow is essential
- 2.5 Extra tips that will help you after choosing the right crossbow:
- 2.6 Must-Have Accessories for Beginners:
Best Crossbows 2021
1. Barnett Jackal Package: The best Crossbow for the money
User-friendly, lightweight, durable, and easy to assemble, the Barnett Jackal Package is without doubt beginners’ best bet.
The Barnett Jackal Package boasts is the best crossbow in 2021 a sturdy, durable, and well-balanced build, as the quad style limbs with energy wheels on its end provide a good amount of stability and allow you to take accurate shots.
The stock has a military-inspired design that gives it an eye-catching look and enables you to hold it comfortably and safely. As for the foregrip, it is located below the string meaning you don’t have to worry about your hand interfering with the path of the arrow.
Weighing in at 7.7 lbs and a 12-inch power stroke, it is very lightweight and can be carried to any place you desire with relative ease, thus it is a legitimate choice for children and adults alike.
When it comes to performance, the Jackal Package can launch arrows with a speed of 315 feet per second. On top of that, it generates 150 pounds of draw weight and 95 FP of kinetic energy whenever you pull the trigger. Sure enough, it’s not the greatest but it is just what you expect from a beginner-friendly crossbow.
Another interesting thing we should point out is the top-notch accuracy, thanks to the convenient platform and 3.5 smooth trigger you won’t experience any jerky movements when shooting, in addition to a 20 yards pre sighted scope that will give you clear view of your target. The only downside is; the noise it produces might scare away some preys and the lack of a rope cocking feature.
- Solid and sleek build
- Accurate and stable
- Has no rope cocking
- A bit noisy
2. Wicked Ridge M-370: Best Crossbow for Hunting
Introducing the Wicked Ridge M-370, this crossbow offers the best value for its money and it is one of the lightest models out there.
The Wicked Ridge M-370 is designed to give you the best shooting experience, as it sports a 9.5 inch wide and 180-pound bow assembly, as well as the VX-5 reverse cams that elongate the power stroke and ramp up cam rotation.
As a result, this crossbow can produce speeds up to 370 feet per second just like the name implies, not to mention the fact that it has pinpoint precision and it is very quiet, making it perfect for both hunting and target practice.
From a design and build quality perspective, it weighs a mere 5.8lbs which makes it a contender for being the world’s lightest crossbow. What’s more, the Air-Lite stock of the M-370 features an accessory rail and it is engineered to improve handling and maneuverability, and it is also built to last for years of hunting and regular use.
The fully integrated foregrip is supported by extended safety rings to ensure that your hands are safe during the shot. In addition to all this, it is equipped with a fully enclosed trigger guard just for that extra safety everyone needs.
Regarding other features, the M-370 is suitable for all ages because it comes with an Acudraw cocking device which reduces the cocking force to 5lbs only. For a better view of the target, the M-370 has a built-in TenPoint multi-line scope. As for its cons, some reviewers claim it’s not as fast as advertised, producing 350 fps instead of 370 fps when testing.
- Super lightweight
- Convenient design
- Accurate and silent
- Slightly less speed compared to what is promoted
3. Excalibur Assassin 420 TD: Best overall
Up next, we have the Excalibur Assassin 420 TD, slightly expensive yet a very powerful crossbow with solid performances, and if you want long-lasting quality, you need to invest in it.
Unlike most of their competitors that go for the cam design, the Excalibur manufacturers decided to stick with the old-fashioned rugged build with all their previous crossbows models, and the Assassin 420 TD edition is no different.
And boy did it work! This crossbow is the epitome of durability and reliability. The take-down Quick-Loc technology feature also sets apart from other models as it allows you to disassemble and reassemble the crossbow with a simple push of a button.
Moreover, it has a reasonable weight of 8 pounds and it is equipped with Excalibur’s Tru-Fit stock that isn’t bulky and has an adjustable ambidextrous cheek piece and butt plate, any type of shooter would appreciate this convenience.
With a velocity of 420 feet per second and over 137 FP of kinetic energy, the Assassin 420 Td is no slouch when it comes to performance, you can hunt a big game animal with just 14lbs of force.
Furthermore, this crossbow is designed to be silent and thanks to the built-in sound deadeners, and it also has rock solid accuracy due to the Pro-Shot Match-Grade trigger that gives you a light pull weight and the 30mm pre-sighted scope that enables you to aim precisely at your target.
- Extremely durable
- Smooth trigger
- High speed
- Takedown technology
- A bit on the expensive side
4. BearX Constrictor Stoke: Best crossbow under 600
The BearX Constrictor stoke is something you need to check out if you’re interested in buying a compact and reliable for just under 600 bucks.
This brand new crossbow is extremely narrow and rocks a compact design, measuring only 10 inches wide when cocked and 14 inches wide uncocked. Concerning another aspect of its build quality, it has a fully adjustable stock as well as an adjustable cheekpiece, so you won’t have any issue holding it still regardless of your stature.
Moreover, it has alighted and illuminated scope that comes in handy when it gets dark, and the interesting thing is the fact that the 4 bolt quiver is mounted on top of the crossbow with the top X technology.
It weighs roughly 9 pounds and comes with a package that includes 3 bear X bolts, a string wax, rail lube, alongside the 4 –arrow quiver and a cocking rope. Speaking of cocking, it appears that the 190lbs cocking rope can be a hassle to deal with for smaller folks.
Usually, crossbows that are on the cheaper side of the spectrum don’t pack the power that elite shooters desire. But in this case, the BearX Constrictor more than delivers as it is capable of generating shooting speeds up to 410 feet per second with a draw weight of 180lbs.
Also, it is very quiet thanks to the dual-mount string recoil suppressor system that eliminates noise and vibration and allows it to remain stealthy. Therefore, hunters who crave stealth will be in for a treat.
- Compact and narrow design
- Blazing speed for its price tag and compact design
- Stealthy and silent
- Cumbersome cocking mechanism
5. Killer Instinct Swat XP: Hunting Crossbow
With a well-balanced build, good accuracy, fast shooting speed, the Killer Instinct Swat XP has everything you look for in a crossbow.
Starting off with the design, at first glance you’re going to notice that it has a unique design as everything is located at the center of the crossbow from cams, to scope, to the trigger and grip.
Consequently, it is very well balanced and the weight is distributed equally, it’s neither front-heavy nor back heavy which gives you the ability to hold it comfortably and lock in on what you’re aiming for.
The Killer Instinct Swat XP has a compact and lightweight build, weighing just about 7lbs with 27 inches of total length, 14 inches of uncocked width, and 9.1 inches cocked width, so carrying it with you in when going on your hunting errands won’t be a hassle.
The velocity of this crossbow isn’t bad either; with 415 feet per second and 153 FP kinetic energy, you’ll be able to take down big animals with ease. Also, the draw weight is 200lbs and the power stroke is 16 inches.
Not only does this crossbow have a great deal of shooing speed, but it also has top-notch accuracy thanks to the Accutac Barrel System that reduces oscillation and eliminates wobbling allowing you to shoot at anything accurately.
Moreover, the 3lbs trigger is so crisp and the Broadhead Cage features ensures your safety as it traps the bolts and broadhead inside the riser and prevents any bolts from going off-track.
- Well-balanced design
- High velocity
- Very accurate
- Safe to use
- No negative reviews as of yet
If you’re into solid performing yet inexpensive crossbows, the Barnett TS390 Tactical Series is definitely something you don’t wanna miss out on.
Although the Barnett TS390 Tactical Series is slightly on the heavy side which is just above the 8lbs mark, it still has some excellent features that make it stand out in terms of build quality. One of them is the ventilated stock that can be adjusted to your liking, along with a sturdy CNC machined aluminum flight track. Add to that a fiberglass composite step-through riser.
All of these contribute to making this crossbow very durable while enabling to achieve more accuracy when taking your shots. What’s more, it features an anti-dry fire trigger and a trigger guard for the much-needed safety reminder.
Reaching a maximum shooting speed of 390 feet per second and generating 128 ft-lbs of kinetic energy, with 14 inches of stroke power and 187lbs of draw weight, it will deliver plenty of velocity and power on impact to handle large game preys and be as deadly as it can be in the woods.
Furthermore, it comes with a silencing system so you won’t have to worry about chasing away your prey, an advanced trigger system to improve shot accuracy, a 4×32 illuminated scope that allows for better aiming at your target and three Picatinny rails to mount other accessories for extra convenience in your hunting trip.
- Solid construction
- Has good safety measures
- Fairly accurate
- If equipped with all the bells and whistles it becomes heavy
7. Scorpyd Aculeus:
With a whopping 460 fps maximum shooting speed, the Scorpyd Aculeus cements its spot as one fastest crossbow today and it certainly worth a spot in our list.
At 460 feet per second with a draw weight of 180lbs, there are very few crossbows that can match the firepower of the Scorpyd Aculeus. With such amazing shooting speed, hunting big game animals should be a breeze.
With that said, there is no point in having such high velocity when you can’t hit your target, that’s why manufacturers made sure that this crossbow is accurate by incorporating the 2.5 inches Kemp TEC SEER-LOC adjustable trigger into the design to enhance the accuracy on this beast and also being a factor in reaching those tremendous speeds.
When it comes to the build quality and design, it is very sturdy as you may expect from a flagship crossbow, the riser, the barrel, and the entire body is anodized and made with premium materials.
Plus, the fasteners are made of titanium which is one of the most durable materials known to mankind. As for the weight and measurements, it is has a total body weight of 7.5 lbs which is average, and 12 inches of width when cocked which sadly means it is neither narrow nor compact.
Last but not least, the Scorpyd Aculeus features string stops to eliminate any noise and vibration thereby it is extremely silent, and it is equipped with an illuminated scope to offer you a clear view of your target when hunting.
- One of the fastest crossbows
- Built with high-quality materials
- It offers stability and precision.
- Lacks compactness
8. Wicked Ridge RDX400: Best crossbow for deer hunting
The RDX 400 from Wicked Ridge ticks all the boxes with amazing shooting speed makes it perfect for deer hunting, a solid build, and a low price tag.
Due to its high speeds and premium build, this is considered as a flagship and premium crossbow for deer hunting but with a fraction of the price. It can achieve top shooting speeds of up to 400 feet per second with a 140 FP kinetic energy.
Owing to the elongated power stroke that grants it more speeds with less poundage. On top of that, it features deadly accuracy thanks to the custom Reaper cam system and the reverse-draw bow assembly that help with eliminating vibrations thus allowing you to take smooth shots with no noise whatsoever, and also drastically enhance the overall precision of the crossbow.
The RDX 400 deer hunting crossbow measures 9 inches wide axel to axel when cocked, 33.5 inches in length and weighs 7.1lbs. In addition to that, the reverse draw bow assembly features a center-mounted riser that makes the cross very well-balanced.
There’s no nose-heavy feeling that you experience with other models, as shifting the riser from the front of the crossbow to its center gives it a great deal of balance and stability when you’re holding it, meaning you’ll be able to stay locked on target effortlessly.
Other key features of this crossbow include; a 3.5 lbs trigger that fitted with a trigger safety (auto-engaging safety) and a dry-fire inhibitor, TenPoint Multi-line scope for improved aiming, and a String stop system that reduces noise and vibrations even further.
- Packed with useful features
- Balanced and convenient design
- Some reviewers claim it isn’t very accurate
The TenPoint Turbo GT was built to last and it is arguably one the most durable crossbows money can buy.
The Turbo GT boasts a lightweight, durable, as well as a comfortable design. The adjustable Fusion S stock and the ultra-compact XLT bow assembly coupled with the Arca Angle barrel, 12-inch power stroke, and the reinforced nylon safety wings contribute to making it the sturdy crossbow it is. Not to mention all of these factors aid it to reach 360 feet per second of launching speed.
It weighs approximately 6.5lbs without all the bells and whistles, and it measures 35 inches in length, 13.5 inches wide when cocked, and 17.5 inches uncocked which is by no mean the narrowest option available. Also, the weight will slightly increase once you equip it with all the necessary accessories.
As mentioned above, the Turbo GT is capable of achieving maximum shooting speeds of up to 360 fps and 107FP of kinetic energy with a draw weight of 170 lbs. A lot of hunters swear by it and claim this is a very reliable crossbow and good enough to hunt down big game prey.
The Turbo GT comes with an ACUdraw rope cocking mechanism and 3x Pro-view 2 scope. However, it doesn’t’ include any sort of silencers like dampeners or string stoppers, which is the only thing that holds back.
- Rugged and durable build
- Convenient design
- No noise and vibration killer
The CenterPoint Gladiator is a very capable and all-rounder crossbow that deserves the attention of even elite hunters and target shooters.
This is an exciting crossbow that delivers all across the board, from performance to build quality to pricing. Starting with the build quality, it comes with a quad limbs cam system, and the cams are CNC machined for increased speed. an aluminum rail to keep the weight to a minimum, an AR-stock that offers plenty of stability when shouldering the crossbow and precision when shooting.
And a 4x32mm illuminated scope for unrivaled precision. The combination of these makes the Gladiator very effective at taking down the toughest of prey.
In regards to its weight and measurements, the Gladiator weighs roughly 8 pounds and measures 17.5 inches wide uncocked, 13.5 inches wide cocked, and 35 inches long. This is not the narrowest or the lightest but it’s still fairly portable for most people.
Featuring a maximum speed of 405 feet per second, 135 FP of kinetic energy, and a 15-inch power stroke, it’s safe to say that this crossbow generates a great amount of power and speed behind each shot you take which is a big bonus, especially considering its asking price. Although it will require you some effort to pull it off as the draw weight is 200lbs, that is if you don’t plan on using the cocking rope that is included in the package.
Safety and stealth are paramount when it comes to crossbows, that’s why the CenterPoint Manufacturer team made the Gladiator has an auto-safety trigger and an anti-dry fire system in place for extra safety, and a string suppressors for decreasing vibrations and sound output.
- Great shooting speed
- Solid overall construction
- Can be heavy and bulky for some
Tips on How to Choose the best Crossbow:
If you’re looking for fun outdoors and want to get into hunting or target practicing and specifically crossbow hunting, in the next section we’re going to offer you some valuable tips on how to pick a crossbow that’s right for the job.
There are tons of crossbows on the market and there are a number of factors that one must put into consideration prior to buying a crossbow. The good news is, there is something for everyone regardless of your budget. So, stick around and you will most likely know exactly what you’re looking for by the end of this.
Should I buy the most expensive crossbow?
You don’t need to have the fastest and latest crossbow on the market, as some inexpensive models with above-average shooting speeds are more than capable of reliably getting the job done for all of the big game animals.
Despite the fact that most hunting equipment is the price, there’s no need to break the bank in order for you to get a decent and reliable crossbow.
There’s a variety of options out there for almost every budget and there are plenty of solid performing crossbows that are under 500 bucks.
Weight of the bow matters
Choosing the right draw weight and poundage is crucial. More often than not, 150lbs of draw weight is adequate to hunt whitetail deer and sometimes you can get away with a little less but it’s not recommended.
Preferably, you want to go for 175 to 200 lbs of draw weight. At the same time, you should also consider how physically capable are, anything above 200lbs is a big ask for many people. A rope cocking mechanism will come in handy in case you decided to go for a model with the high draw weight.
Accuracy & how to improve it
Accuracy is a top priority, what’s the point having a crossbow if you can’t hit the target? You must have accurate shots hence why you have to make sure to buy a crossbow that is accurate and deliver the point of impact exactly where you want it to be.
A good way to improve your accuracy is a good scope, it’s a mandatory piece of equipment. So, choose a crossbow that comes with an illuminated crystal clear scope in the package. Ideally, a 4x magnification will do the trick for most people and will give you a clear view of your target.
Quiet and a safe crossbow is essential
Choose a bow that is quiet and stealthy, as you don’t want to scare and chase away your prey. A good crossbow is always silent, and there’s no better way to ensure that than string stoppers and suppressors along with a dampener.
Last but certainly not least is safety features, is the crossbow you want to buy fitted with a safety trigger and anti-dry fire? If not then we highly recommend you look elsewhere.
Extra tips that will help you after choosing the right crossbow:
- Sight-in your crossbow, sighting your crossbow is crucial for accuracy and it requires some work and a little patience, so how do you go about it?
- Set up your archery target by picking the easiest one to get arrows out of.
- Make sure the arrow consistently hits dead center and sight the bow for perfect alignment on up and down shots.
- For long-distance aiming you should set all of the pins, this sure takes some time but it’s definitely worth it.
- You have to keep your crossbow in good shape by maintaining it, and here’s what you should do:
- Make sure to wax the string and cables on a regular base, as they tend to dry out and fray because of weather conditions and wear.
- The rail should be lubricated to keep your accuracy to a maximum and your crossbow functioning properly.
- Store it in a protective case to avoid damaging it during transport and the case will also make it easy and convenient to carry around.
- Inspect your equipment carefully prior to each use
- Clean it off so it doesn’t collect any dust or dirt, also make sure to regularly wipe the lens of your scope
Must-Have Accessories for Beginners:
If you’re new to crossbows, there are some essential accessories that will help you out a ton by improving your hunting skills and make life much easier.
A practice target will teach you how to aim properly and help you upgrade your crossbow skill set in general. Traditional foam layer block targets will do the job perfectly as well as the newly introduced 3D competition. targets
This is what holds your arrows and you need to have whatever your goal is. They come in numerous types and designs, belt, side, pocket, back quiver, and the list goes on, just make sure to select the one that complements your shooting style.
A bow stabilizer just like the name implies helps with making your crossbow more stable and steady by eliminating any vibrations when shooting, it also serves s a silencer and cancels noises coming out of your crossbow
You can either go with iron sights which are not as reliable or a scope, the latter is what most experts recommend as it enhances your accuracy by a great margin and gives you a better view of your target.
My name is Oussama Blackwell, 28 years old tech, and outdoor geek. I studied technology at the university along with finance and accounting. I love to write blogs related to my field of expertise.