For the longest time, aluminum arrows were the preferred choice of many bowhunters. This was before the entry of carbon arrows in the 1990s. Today, a vast majority of bowhunters use carbon arrows for hunting.
However, just because an arrow has a shaft made of carbon does not mean it is the best arrow for hunting. So how do you differentiate the best carbon arrows for hunting and shooting from the cheap knock-offs that litter the market?
Well, you have to know what to look for in a carbon arrow first. And in this article, I will be giving you tips on finding the best carbon hunting arrows. Also, I will be reviewing eight of the top carbon arrows I have used.
But wait if you are in a hurry and just want to know which are the best picks then these two arrows are worth mentioning: Our winning picks is Carbon Express Maxima RED Fletched for its awesome performance while our runner-up picks is the Tiger Archery 30Inch Carbon Arrow for its quality preference in a budget price.
Top Carbon Arrows For Hunting & Shooting: Comparison Chart
Last update on 2023-01-26
Which Type of Arrow Shaft is Right for Me? Carbon, Aluminum, or Wooden?
A shaft is the part of an arrow that connects to the bow and carries the weight of the arrow. The three most common types of arrows are carbon, aluminum arrows, and wooden arrows. A good shaft should be durable, lightweight, and also have a good spine rating for straightness. Here, I want to talk about which type of shaft is best? Carbon is best because it has low resistance and it’s very light so you don’t need much force in order to shoot your arrow with high precision.
- Wooden Shafts are heavier and they are slower and not perfect for target shooting. If you are a modern caveman or longbow hunter, wooden shafts might be best for you. One thing wooden shaft doesn’t have the resiliency or straightness of carbon or aluminum shafts, so you may not want them if your goal is shooting an arrow at high speeds with precision.
- Aluminum Shafts are lighter arrow than wooden arrow, they are heavier and slower than Carbon Arrows. Aluminum shafts are more durable and resistant to breakage. One thing that is a downside of Aluminum Shafts, they have less accuracy than carbon arrows because the aluminum material has some resistance which slows down your arrow’s speed.
- Carbon Arrows are the best choice for modern archers who want high precision shooting without sacrificing weight or durability. They’re also the fastest out of all three types of shafts so if you need a quick shot at an animal then these might be best for you! Carbon Arrows have low resistance, meaning they can shoot faster with greater accuracy (lesser wind drag) than other materials like wood or aluminum. The only downside to carbon arrows is their cost: they may not always work well for beginner archers because they are rather expensive.
These all offer different strengths which is why I made mention of each one individually! You should choose what’s right for your own personal style of shooting and situation. However, Carbon Shafts are my favorite type of arrow shaft since they’re lightweight yet durable as well as super-fast without sacrificing any precision shots like other types might do.
What To Consider Before Buying a Carbon Hunting Arrows
Before buying carbon arrows, you must evaluate their performance and durability for your specific purpose. Some arrows best for hunting, some for shooting.
So Needless to say, there are some factors you need to consider when shopping for carbon arrows. These factors are outlined below.
The term spine consistency refers to an arrow’s stiffness. While carbon arrows are stiffer than their aluminum counterparts, you must settle on an arrow with the right balance of stiffness.
To check an arrow’s stiffness, try to bend it. If an arrow is stiff, it will be hard to bend. On the other hand, if an arrow is not sufficiently stiff, it will bend easily. Arrows that are not sufficiently stiff lack accuracy.
Worse yet, they can be plowed into by your crossbow’s strings. Thus, the best arrows for hunting need to be stiff but not too stiff.
You probably know for a perfect shot, drop arrow rest plays a vital role. If you have a plan to get quality arrow rest, check this review.
Weight is another critical factor to consider when buying carbon arrows. Arrow weight tolerance is also referred to as grains per inch and depends on what you want to use your arrows for.
If you want arrows for target practice or archery tournaments, lighter arrows are recommended.
However, if you want arrows specifically for bow hunting, heavier arrows are better. The reason being that heavier arrows offer more penetration power.
On the other hand, lighter arrows can travel in a straight line better than their heavier counterparts. In my experience, the best arrows for both archery and bowhunting are those, with a weight of between 200 and 500 grains.
For honing your shooting or hunting skills, archery target bags play a vital role. I will recommend getting an archery target for minimizing shooting errors and unethical hunting shots.
The straightness of an arrow is measured in inches and normally ranges from 0.001 inches to 0.006 inches. The smaller the number, the better or straighter the arrow. This means that arrows that have a straightness level of 0.003 inches or lower are pricey.
That being said, if you want the best balance between straightness and price, go for arrows with the straightness of 0.003 inches. The straighter the arrow, the better it flies.
The last factor to consider is price. Different carbon arrows are priced differently. They can cost as low as $40 and as much as $100. If you are on a tight budget, there are some pretty good arrows in the low budget segment, as you will see in the reviews below.
Reviews Of Best Hunting Arrows: (Carbon)
6 – Pk. Carbon Express Maxima Hunter
The Maxima hunter series of arrows had been out of the bowhunting scene for a while before making a comeback in 2011. And I have to say the new and upgraded maxima hunter are amazing and dependable arrow.
With a multi-layered and multi-material design, these arrows are lighter and straighter than most carbon arrows I have used. Also, the arrows’ rear end is stiffer and lighter than the front. This means that the arrows have minimal oscillation when fired. The heavier front and lighter end add to the arrows’ accuracy and penetration power.
- These are very well made
- The arrows have unrivaled accuracy and performance
- The arrows’ Buff Tough mossy oak finish makes them blend in with forest surroundings
- 0.0025 inches of straightness, which is impressive
- The camouflage makes these arrows hard to find if you do not hit the target
- The dual-spine weight forward technology, which is the hallmark of these arrows, is yet to be proven
- 0.0025-inch straightness
- Dual-Spine weight forward technology
- Bull-Dog nocks
- 2-inch blazer vanes
- BuffTuff Camouflage
In my analysis, the upgraded Maxima hunter arrows are amazing to shoot. Also, they make for a good mid-range hunting. Thus, although they are a bit pricier compared to other similar kinds ofarrow, they are worth every penny you spend on them. The bottom line, these are among the best carbon hunting arrows.
Tiger Archery 30Inch Carbon Arrow Practice Hunting Arrow
Looking for practice hunting arrows for your compound & recurve bow? Then the tiger Tiger Archery 30Inch Carbon Arrow Practice Hunting Arrows will be the best choice for you.
They are cheap and best for the money if you are looking for something best for the practice session. These arrows are the best arrows for lightweight bows.
This arrow length is 30 inches, which is more than enough for archery target practice or hunting.
These arrows are rugged and sturdy; it’s durable enough to penetrate the target easily.
The Outer shaft of this carbon arrow is 7.85mm, and the inner is 6.2mm. Fletch of these arrows made combinations of 2 black and 1 white vane.
It has replaceable nocks that are not fixed and can be adjustable with your bow. You will get 6 nocks free with the package. It is recommended not to use the compound bow more than 60 lbs.
Carbon Express Maxima RED Fletched Carbon Arrows
The Maxima Red Fletched Carbon Arrow is one of Carbon Express’ best sellers. Loved by thousands of bowhunters, myself included, these arrows are the most consistent I own.
And that’s not all; these arrows feature a Buff Tough coating that protects the shaft. Additionally, these arrows have a dynamic spine that makes them compatible with bows with a draw weight of between 40 and 81 pounds.
Also, I have been using these arrows for a while now, and they still look as they did when I bought them.
- The arrows are accurate and precise
- The carbon material used to make these arrows make them fly better
- The arrows are laser checked to an impressive 0.001 inch
- The arrows come in a 6 pack of black and red arrows
- The construction is top-notch
- These arrows are relatively pricier than other arrows
- The bright red color of these arrows might not be ideal for hunting
- Fletched blazer vanes
- Hi-tech carbon construction
- 1/10,000 inch straightness
- dynamic spine
- Red zone center
- LAUNCHPAD nocks to deliver controlled arrow release
Carbon Express is the most known carbon arrow manufacturer in the world. Therefore, you should not expect anything less than excellence from the Maxim Red arrows. And while they are not cheap, they will be worth every penny you spend on them. The bottom line, the Maxima RED arrows are some of the best carbon arrows for the money.
Excalibur Diablo 18in. Carbon Arrows
I am a proud owner of an Excalibur Matrix crossbow. So it was only natural for me to buy the Excalibur Diablo 18 inch carbon Arrows. These arrows have been designed specifically for Excalibur’s Matrix line of crossbows.
As you have probably already guessed, these arrows measure 18 inches. I have fired these arrows from my hunting crossbow and have to say they shoot well. The insert is heavy, which increases front-of center weight.
- The front of the center feature guarantee accuracy of the arrows
- These arrows are compatible with both mechanical broadhead and fixed broadhead.
- Unlike most arrows, these arrows have a flat back insert instead of a nock, which offers a more reliable contact with bowstrings
- These arrows are designed for recurve crossbows
- These arrows are in particular designed for Excalibur recurve crossbows
- The fletching color that came with the arrows do not correspond to the color shown online
- The Fletcher also tends to come off, and you may have to glue them on again
- 18-inch shaft
- 2-inch vanes
- Heavier front insert
- Flatback insert
If you are looking for arrows crafted specifically for your Excalibur Matrix crossbow, you need to check these Diablo 18 inch arrows. Additionally, if you are looking for arrows for deer hunting, I strongly recommend these Diablo arrows. In summary, these arrows are ideal for deer hunting.
Barnett Outdoors Carbon Crossbow 20-Inch Arrows
Barnett is known more for its crossbows; however, the manufacturer does not excel in the manufacture of crossbows alone. This is evidenced by the superior performance of the Barnett Outdoors Carbon Crossbow 20 inch arrows.
As their name suggests, these arrows are designed for high-performance crossbows such as the Barnett Ghost 350. Weighing 8.1 ounces and measuring 20 inches, these arrows are sold in a five-pack. Additionally, these arrows have 13.78 grains per inch, which is pretty impressive. Barnett is so confident of these arrows performance that it offers a five-year warranty on them.
- These arrows come with a five-year warranty
- These arrows offer impressive accuracy and reliability
- The arrows are made from a high-quality carbon material that makes them strong and with a consistent thickness
- These arrows offer impressive target penetration
- These arrows are compatible with the Ghost 350 crossbow
- The arrows come in only two fletching color options, red and white
- The arrows long-range performance is questionable
- 20-inch shaft
- Five arrow pack
- Half-moon nock
- Red and white Fletcher options
- 13.78 grains per inch
The Barnett Outdoors Crossbow arrows are the very definition of high-quality carbon arrows. For starters, they are strong yet lightweight. Additionally, they are offered at a reasonable price tag, which further adds to their appeal. In summary, as with most other products from Barnett, these arrows are some of the best arrows for deer hunting.
Summit Victory Buck Buster Carbon Arrows
I tend to be experimental with arrows and am always eager to try out different arrows. Thankfully, most of my hunting buddies do not use the same arrows I use. Recently, I got to fire one of my friends, Victory Buck Buster Carbon arrows. I was impressed with these arrows that feature an aluminum shaft and measure 31 inches.
- The arrows are very well made and solid
- Work well with bows with a draw weight of between 55 and 70 pounds
- The arrows are compatible with a wide array of arrowheads
- Have straightness of 0.006 inches
- The arrows come with removable and adjustable nocks
- These arrows are relatively new to the market, and the jury is still out on them
- Not all arrows come with the insert installed.
- 350 spine
- 0.006-inch straightness
- Aluminum inserts
- 31-inch arrow shaft
- Bohning V nock collar
Granted, these arrows are relatively new in the market; they are worth purchasing. I really did love their performance and reliability. Additionally, these arrows are reasonably priced. The Victory Buck Buster victory arrows truly do live up to their name. In conclusion, these are some of the best hunting arrows for the money I have used in recent times.
Carbon Express PileDriver Hunter Fletched BuffTuff Carbon Arrows
Carbon Express’ PileDriver Hunter Carbon arrows are crafted for serious hunters. However, these arrows can also be used for archery and target practice. Sold in six-pack boxes, these arrows have a mossy oak finish that blends well with the installed neon vanes. In fact, these arrows are among the best-looking arrows out there.
As with all other Carbon Express, these arrows are laser checked to 1/10,000 of an inch. What I really love about these arrows is their versatility. The PileDriver Hunter arrows can be used for almost anything.
- The built-in weight forward technology guarantees downward accuracy and penetration
- Carbon express laser checked these arrows for impressive straightness of 1/10,000 of an inch
- These arrows are very well made
- The arrows are tough and are capable of penetrating tough skins
- They are reasonably priced
- These arrows are more on the heavier side
- Some users have complained of their arrows breaking
- 2-inch assault vanes
- Bulldog nock collars
- 0.005-inch straightness
- Mossy-oak finish
- 350 spine
- Built-in weight forward technology
Granted, these are some of the most massive arrows from Carbon Express; they do offer amazing penetration power. Furthermore, these arrows are great for long-range hunting. It is for this reason that I recommend these arrows to anyone serious about their hunting. In fact, these arrows are arguably the best hunting arrows for the money from the Carbon Express.
Gold Tip Hunter XT Arrows
The Gold Tip Hunter XT arrow is one of the most reliable and loved ones. The toughness of these arrows makes them appealing to many bowhunters. And with a grain weight of 8.2 inches, these arrows are also some of the priciest on the market.
However, there is a good reason why these arrows are costly. For starters, they have a straightness tolerance of 0.003 inches, which is more than impressive. These arrows are sold in a dozen pack. One of the best things about these arrows is that they come in a variety of color options.
- These arrows are reliable and offer great value for the money
- They are very well made and feel and look solid
- The arrows fly well and consistently
- The arrows are well priced
- The arrows are uncut
- The Fletcher may come off after extensive use
- 0.003-inch straightness
- 2-inch raptor vanes
- 1.8 ounces weight
- S nock collar
- 360-degree rotating nock
- 32 inches long
The Golden Tip Hunter XT arrows have been around for some time, and this makes them a reliable option for most hunters, especially first time hunters. Not only are they reliable and incredibly tough, but these arrows are also accurate and offer impressive penetration power.
What weight carbon arrows should I use?
The carbon arrows you choose to use will depend on the draw weight of your bow. For instance, if you are shooting a 60 lb. bow, we recommend using an arrow with at least 300 grains. This includes your field point or broadhead as well!
Are Heavier arrows more accurate?
The heavier the arrow, the more accurate it becomes. The weight of an arrow is measured in grains, and heavy arrows absorb more energy than lighter ones do. This results in a quieter bow as well as less vibration on release. All other factors being equal, heavier arrows are always more reliable and durable than light ones.
What arrow should a hunter use for deer hunting?
Deer hunters should use arrows that are about 6 to 8 grains per pound of the bow weight. Or, if they have a light bow, use 9 to 10 grains per pound. A typical 60-pound bow should be 360-480 grains and a 70-pound bow 420-560.
When you go out shopping for a set of new carbon arrows, you are sure to find a wide array of arrows to choose from.
However, not all the arrows available on the market can meet your needs. In this regard, some research is needed before you make a decision. Going through online carbon arrow reviews can be the best place to start.
More importantly, the compound bow arrows reviews above will help make you an informed decision. I hope that the above bow hunting arrow reviews have been of help to you.
About The Author:
Lake Streeter, A Gun enthusiast, and loves to hunt in the middle of the wood. Always check the latest hunting gears out in the market and try to share his honest opinion with the audience in OUTDOOR EVER.