Best Crossbow For Deer Hunting Reviews – Top 10 Picks Of 2018

The crossbow has become the weapon of choice for many hunters. Personally, find crossbow hunting to be more realistic than using a rifle. Nevertheless, crossbows are not without disadvantages. That being said, if you want to enjoy the thrill of hunting with a crossbow, you will have to pick the best crossbow for hunting. And that is where this article comes in. In it, I have reviewed some of the best crossbow for deer hunting.

In addition, this article contains useful cross bow hunting tips and how to select the best crossbow for hunting.

best crossbow for deer hunting

Crossbows can trace their origins to ancient China where they were invented. Over the course of history, crossbows have evolved with the evolution of technology.

Modern crossbows are more sophisticated than their ancient counterparts. Additionally, they are designed primarily for hunting, unlike their ancient counterparts that were designed for war.

But enough with the history of crossbows, modern crossbows come in all shapes and sizes, and the best cross bow for deer hunting need to have certain features. Therefore, there are certain factors you will need to consider when buying a crossbow for deer hunting. If you want to buy the best crossbow for the money than you must need to follow those factor. Though we have prepared a list of best out of many. You will not regret choosing one of these.

A Quick Comparison Of Top 10 Best Crossbow for Deer Hunting



Our Ratings & Specialty 

CenterPoint Sniper 370- Crossbow Package

CenterPoint Sniper 370 - Camo Crossbow Package
98 %
  • 185 draw weight
  • 4X32 illuminated scopes
  • Budget Friendly

Excalibur Matrix 380 Crossbow Package

Excalibur Matrix 380 Crossbow Package, Realtree Xtra, 260-Pound
99 %
  • Professional Crossbow For deer Hunting
  • high-quality scope ,
  • 260-pound draw weight
  • 380 FPS velocity

Barnett Jackal Crossbow Package

barnett Jackal Crossbow Package (Quiver, 3-20-Inch Arrows and Premium Red Dot...
96 %
  • 150-pound draw weight
  • comes with Red Dot sight
  • Perfect bow for a beginner

Barnett Recruit Compound Crossbow Package

Barnett Recruit Compound Crossbow Package, Black
97 %
  • 130-pound draw weight
  • Red dot sight attached
  • Best Deer Hunting Bow For Women

Bear X Crossbows Archery Bruzer FFL Crossbow Package

Bear X Crossbows Archery Bruzer FFL Crossbow Package, 34', Black
97 %
  • Ideal for target practice and hunting from a fixed position,
  • 125-pound draw weight,
  • Trophy Ridge XF425 scope

Barnett Whitetail Hunter Crossbow

Barnett Whitetail Hunter Crossbow, 4 x 32'
98 %
  • Ideal for everyday use for deer hunting,
  • 160-pound draw weight,
  • 340 FPS firing velocity,
  • premium 4X32 scope

Barnett Raptor FX2

Barnett Raptor FX2 - Premium Dot Scope Crossbow, Red, 4 x 32'
98 %
  • Best Deer Hunting Crossbow For The Money,
  • Easy to assemble,
  • draw weight of 150 pounds,
  • red dot sight or a 4X32 scope

Killer Instinct MACHINE Bone Collector Edition

Killer Instinct MACHINE (Bone Collector Edition) - High Performance Crossbow -...
99 %
  • Most Powerful Deer Hunting Crossbow,
  •  185-pound draw weight,
  • 385 FPS velocity,
  • illuminated scope

Barnett Outdoors Brotherhood Crossbow Package

Barnett Outdoors Brotherhood Crossbow Package, Camo
96 %
  • Best Crossbow For Small Game & Target Practice,
  • lightweight
  • 160-pound draw weight
  • 350 FPS velocity

Barnett Quad 400 Crossbow

Barnett Quad 400 Crossbow Package (Quiver, 3 - 22-Inch Arrows and Premium Red...
95 %
  • 112 draw weight
  • Accuracy
  • comes with either a red dot or a 4X32 scope
  • 345 FPS firing velocity

What To Consider Before Buying A Best Crossbow For Deer Hunting

Recurve or Compound bows

Crossbows are be categorized into recurve and compound crossbows. Recurve crossbows are the older of the two and feature a more basic and simplistic design. These types of crossbows are characterized by limbs or tips that face away from the shooter.

Compound bows are more advanced and feature shorter limbs with strings attached to pulleys. Additionally, compound crossbows have cam systems for easy draw.

Recurve bows are easy to maintain, and they are also cheaper to buy. Therefore, they are ideal for first-time users.

Compound bows, on the other hand, possess more energy due to their cam systems. Thus do not require increased draw weight. Also, thanks to their short limbs, compound bows are easy to maneuver.

Bottom line,

If you are going deer hunting with a crossbow, I recommend a compound bow. Also It is necessary to learn where to shoot a deer with a bow, if you want to score.


The general misconception is that greater speed is always better. However, this is not always true. A typical deer hunting crossbow offers speeds of between 260 FPS and 400 FPS.

If you want to get the best out of a crossbow, I recommend going for one with a speed of 200 FPS. Bows with high speeds tend to be noisy due to the vibrations emitted by the shot.

Furthermore, faster speeds increase chances of wear and tear. Proper arrow and broadhead tuning can be challenging with faster crossbows.

That being said; do not be tempted to go for faster arrows simply because manufacturers say that faster arrows are better.


Choosing a crossbow based on weight is never easy. This is because; heavy crossbows offer more stability while lighter crossbows offer improved maneuverability.

Thus, if you are strong enough to carry a heavy crossbow and do not move a lot when hunting, a heavier bow will do.

However, if you move a lot or are not strong enough, then a lighter bow will be ideal.

Draw weight

The average draw weight of a good deer hunting crossbow ranges from 75 pounds to 125 pounds. However, there are some crossbows that offer draw weights of up to 200 pounds.

While more draw is better, it is important to note that some states do not allow bows with draw weights of above 175 pounds.

Others such as Ohio allow bows with a draw weight of up to 200 pounds.

Other Consideration

The best bow for crossbow deer hunting will have a number of additional features, which basically form part of your crossbow hunting gear.

  • Cocking aids are used to make cocking of crossbows easier. There are two types, rope cocking device, and crank cocking device. For hunting, I recommend rope cocking devices
  • Apart from cocking aids, the best cross bow deer hunting comes with a good scope. Learn what are the best single pin bow sight.
  • Noise dampening devices that reduce a crossbow’s noise levels can also improve a crossbow’s performance.

Best Crossbow For Deer Hunting Review

After a lots of field test I have decided to these 10 best Crossbow for deer hunting here are they :

  1. CenterPoint Sniper 370- Crossbow Package
  2. Barnett Jackal Crossbow Package
  3. Barnett Recruit Compound Crossbow Package, Black
  4. Bear X Crossbows Archery Bruzer FFL Crossbow Package
  5. Barnett Whitetail Hunter Crossbow, 4 x 32"
  6. Barnett Raptor FX2 
  7. Killer Instinct MACHINE Bone Collector Edition
  8. Excalibur Matrix 380 Crossbow Package
  9. Barnett Outdoors Brotherhood Crossbow Package
  10. Barnett Quad 400 Crossbow

Best Budget Crossbow For Deer Hunting

Compound crossbows are not cheap. However, when you are on a budget, you can still get your hands on a quality crossbow without compromising on quality. Having experimented with several budget crossbows, I believe that the CenterPoint Sniper 370-Crossbow package is the best budget bow.

CenterPoint Sniper 370- Crossbow Package

This might come as a surprise to some, but Crossman is the brand behind the CenterPoint Sniper 370-Crossbow. Which begs the question, is Crossman as good in making crossbows as it is in making BB guns?

This is the question I sought to answer when I bought this crossbow.

Weighing 7.9 pounds, this crossbow is not the lightest out there. Furthermore, when uncocked it measures 21.6 inches wide and 18 inches when cocked. Thus, it is also not the smallest crossbow.

Nevertheless, I was pleased with the fact that it comes with a shoulder strap that makes it easy to carry. I was impressed with the performance of this crossbow with its firing speed of 370 FPS.

To put this into perspective, the firing velocity of this bow equates to 128 ft-lbs of kinetic energy, which is more than enough to take down a grizzly.

Being such a powerful bow, I was not surprised at its draw weight of 185 pounds. Moreover, I was not surprised at how difficult it can be to cock this bow.

Fortunately, Crossman throws in a rope cocking device into the package. Apart from the last device, the package also came with three 20 inch bolts, a multi-reticle and illuminated scope.


  • This is one of the most powerful bows I have ever used
  • Comes with a fully adjustable stock and forearm
  • There is an illuminated scope attached to it
  • Comes with a rope cocking device


  • It is relatively heavier compared to other crossbows


  • 185 draw weight
  • 4X32 illuminated scope
  • 370 FPS velocity
  • Four arrow quiver
  • Three 20 inch carbon bolts
  • Aluminum rail
  • CNC machined cam system
  • Quad limbs

From this centerpoint sniper 370 review, it is apparent that the bow is powerful enough to take down some of the largest game that inhabits the North American forests. Therefore, this bow is perfect for cross bow deer hunting.

Best Deer Hunting Crossbow For Beginners

If you are new to crossbows, an inexpensive and easy to use crossbow will be what you are looking for. There are many crossbows that will serve your needs as a beginner; however, none will offer a better price and power combo than the Barnett Jackal Crossbow. And below is why you should get this crossbow package.

Barnett Jackal Crossbow Package

One of my hunting buddies is what you would call a crossbow fanatic. He owns quite a big selection of crossbows and I recently got to try out his Barnett Jackal Crossbow Package and this is my Barnett Jackal crossbow review.

I found, the Barnett to be easier to cock than my centerpoint. I did not require a rope device to cock this crossbow as my hands were sufficient.

Nevertheless, much to my surprise, the Barnett Jackal is a powerful crossbow. It is capable of firing 20-inch bolts at a velocity of 315 FPS. With its firing velocity, the Barnett has a draw weight of 150 pounds. I fired at tin can targets from about 60 yards, and I was more than impressed with the trigger pull.

Of worth noting is that this is not the quietest bow, in fact, it is rather loud. However, this is to be expected from a bow of its caliber.


  • It is affordable considering how powerful it is
  • Offers enough power to take down almost every legal game in the country
  • Features automated safety that prevents misfiring
  • The military-like stock looks cool and is very comfortable


  • The package is without a rope cocking device


  • Three 20 inch arrows
  • Detachable Quiver
  • 3.5-pound trigger pull
  • 150-pound draw weight
  • 315 FPS firing velocity
  • Red Dot sight

Based on my analysis and some of the Barnett crossbow reviews I read online prior to using this bow, I feel that it is the perfect bow for a beginner. It is powerful enough to be used for target practice as well as hunting. Although you can cock it with your hands, I recommend getting a rope cocking mechanism.

Best Deer Hunting Crossbow For Women

Compound crossbows are heavy and are difficult to cock, which can be problematic for small framed persons and women. Fortunately, there exist a number of crossbows specifically designed for women and small framed persons. One such crossbow is the Barnett Recruit Compound Crossbow.

Barnett Recruit Compound Crossbow Package

Another Barnett crossbow that is worth reviewing is the Barnett Recruit Compound Crossbow. Designed for small framed shooters, this crossbow delivers 85 pounds of kinetic energy, which equals to a draw weight of 130 pounds. Needless, to say, it is not as powerful as other Barnett crossbows.

However, it still packs a punch thanks to its 300 FPS firing velocity. Thanks to its draw weight, this Barnett bow can easily be cocked without the aid of a cocking device.

Attached to this bow is a red dot sight that has a premium feel to it.

The pistol grip of this crossbow feels ergonomic while the adjustable butt stock makes it easy to use regardless of your height. Included in this package are three 20 inch carbon arrows.


  • It is well sized for women and persons of a small stature
  • Comes with a rope cocking mechanism
  • Can be cocked without the aid of a rope cocking device
  • Delivers enough velocity to take down most big game


  • Some users have complained about the quality of the bow’s strings


  • Three 20 inch arrows
  • Adjustable butt stock
  • Red dot sight attached
  • 130-pound draw weight
  • Quiver
  • Rope cocking device

The Barnet Recruit Compound bow weighs 6 pounds. That being said, this is a crossbow I would recommend to women. The Barnett Recruit crossbow review reveals that this Compound bow is designed for people with a small stature.

Best Deer Hunting Crossbow From Fixed Position

When you are out deer hunting, you will need a crossbow that you can maneuver easy with. In this regard, you will need a bow that is easy to cock and is compact. In essence, you need the Bear X Crossbows Archery Bruzer FFL crossbow.

Bear X Crossbows Archery Bruzer FFL Crossbow Package

The Bear X Crossbows Bruzer crossbow is one of the best-looking crossbows I have ever come across. But it is not all good looks and no performance; on the contrary, this is also one of the most powerful crossbows on the business.

With this crossbow, you will be able to hit targets at a velocity of 335 FPS. With such a velocity, this crossbow is more than capable of taking down the largest game in the forest.

In terms of ease of cocking, the 125-pound draw weight of this bow means you will not require a rope cocking mechanism.

Surprisingly, this crossbow is vibration free, meaning it is a quiet shooter.

One of the things you get included in this package is a Trophy Ridge XF425 scope, which is a decent scope for hunting.

As with all the other crossbows on this list, you also get three 20 inch bolts. These arrows have a weight of between 400 and 425 grains.


  • It has a light draw weight considering its power
  • Features forward facing limbs for better balance
  • It is a compact scope
  • It has a unique design


  • Weighing 9 pounds, it is quite heavy


  • Trophy Ridge XF425 scope
  • Three 20 inch arrows
  • Quiver with a Picatinny-mount
  • 335 FPS velocity
  • 125-pound draw weight
  • Forward facing limbs

The Bear X Crossbows Archery Bruzer FFL Crossbow would be the best compound bow for deer hunting, but it is not for its weight. Therefore, due to its weight, it is ideal for target practice and hunting from a fixed position. This is not the kind of crossbow you will want to haul around in the woods unless you want to.

Best Go To Crossbow For Deer Hunting

Sometimes, power is all you need to take down a whitetail deer. In this regard, a powerful yet maneuverable crossbow will come in handy. One of the most powerful crossbows is the Barnett Whitetail Hunter Crossbow.

Barnett Whitetail Hunter Crossbow

As you probably have already guessed, the Barnett Whitetail hunter crossbow is, in my opinion, the best crossbow for deer hunting. Released in 2016, this bow features limbs made from a composite laminate that protect it from the harsh weather during winter.

Also, similar to all other Barnett crossbows, this bow comes with a 7/8 inch Picatinny rail.

Being the best for deer hunting, the bow weighs only 6.2 pounds, meaning it is easy to carry. Additionally, with a width of 18.2 inches, it is compact enough for use in the wild outdoors.

The firing velocity stands at 340 FPS while the draw weight is 160 pounds. Needless to say, this is not the kind of bow you will want to cock with your hands.

The 340 FPS firing velocity produces a ferocious 103 pounds of kinetic energy.

A 4X32 scope is attached to the bow, while three 20 inches arrow come inside the bow’s quiver.


  • This bow is designed for deer hunting
  • It is extremely light for easy hauling through the woods
  • It is highly maneuverable thanks to its short width and length
  • Comes with a premium 4X32 scope attached


  • Some people have complained of the anti-dry safety feature malfunctioning


  • 7/8 inch Picatinny rail
  • Composite laminated limbs
  • 340 FPS firing velocity
  • 160-pound draw weight
  • Pass through fore grip
  • Finger reminders
  • Composite stock

If you are looking for a bow to go crossbow deer hunting, then the Barnett Whitetail Hunter Crossbow is the bow for you. This crossbow has everything deer hunting would need to take down whitetail deer.

Best Deer Hunting Crossbow For The Money

Quality does not come cheap. Nevertheless, you can get a quality bow for a reasonable price that is worth with its price tag. One of the priciest hunting crossbows is the Barnett Raptor FX2.

Barnett Raptor FX2 Crossbow

Similar to the Whitetail crossbow, the Barnett Raptor was released by Barnett in 2016. Marketed as a beginner crossbow, this Barnett boasts of ferocious speeds and pin-point accuracy.

All this is thanks to its 330 FPS firing velocity and the premium red dot sight attached to it. Thanks to its firing velocity, this bow is able to dish out 97 pounds of kinetic energy, which is not bad for a beginner crossbow.

With a draw weight of 150 pounds, cocking this bow with your hands can prove to be a tall order. It is for this reason that Barnett offers a rope cocking device as part of the package.

To make it maneuverable in the field, this crossbow has a width of 18 inches.

This Barnett model comes with either a red dot sight or a 4X32 scope. In addition, the bow features a 9/7 inch Picatinny rail.


  • This crossbow is easy to assemble; you can have it ready to shoot in ten minutes
  • It is a compact and lightweight crossbow
  • Comes with a rope cocking device
  • Is a powerful crossbow for a beginner
  • Comes with either a red dot sight or a 4X32 scope


  • It is quite pricey compared to other crossbows with better features


  • 330 FPS of velocity
  • 18-inch width
  • 7/8 inch Picatinny rail
  • Composite laminated limbs
  • Composite stock
  • Bristle retainer

As mentioned, this crossbow is advertised as the best crossbow for beginners. While it is a great crossbow, its price tag might cause many beginners to shy away. Therefore, I would recommend it to a professional hunter, thanks to its lightweight, compact design and firing velocity.

Most Powerful Deer Hunting Crossbow

There exists a class of crossbows whose power puts them out of the reach of most hunters. Nevertheless, if you are serious about your hunting, then you will need a bow with the power to match your needs. Though it is one of the priciest on the market, the Crossbow Killer Instict MACHINE Bone collector is worth the purchase.

Killer Instinct MACHINE Bone Collector Edition Crossbow

The MACHINE Bone Collector Edition crossbow is one of the best crossbows for hunting I have ever used. This bow has everything a hunter would need.

For starters, it has a firing speed of 385 FPS, which is pretty impressive. And is if that was not impressive enough, this bow is equipped with Killer Instinct’s 2-pound frictionless trigger.

Additionally, this crossbow is compact and measures 34 inches in length when folded. In regards to width, the bow measures 14.5 inches when cocked and 18.5 inches when uncocked.

Speaking of cocked, with a draw weight of 185 pounds, cocking this bow will require the aid of a rope cocking device. Fortunately, the bow does come with a rope cocking device.

This crossbow features a mossy oak camo color that means it is not conspicuous in the forest.

Three 20 inch crossbow arrows are also included in this package.


  • Weighing 7 pounds, it is lightweight and compact
  • Features an ergonomic AR-15 pistol grip
  • It has a drop compensated illuminated scope attached to it
  • Is a powerful bow capable of firing arrows at 385 FPS
  • Has a camo color


  • It is quite pricey for a bow with its features


  • 185-pound draw weight
  • 385 FPS velocity
  • Flip-Tech folding stock
  • Ki Lumix multi-reticle scope
  • Three carbon arrows
  • 2-pound trigger

It might not be the cheapest crossbow on the market, but it is one of the best crossbows for deer hunting. Due to its power, this is a crossbow I recommend to anyone looking to make a switch from rifles to bows. In essence, this bow is probably the closest a crossbow has come to being a rifle.

Best Professional Crossbow For Hunting : For Big Game

Hunting big game requires you to equip yourself with a powerful crossbow that can take them down. If you want a crossbow that is good enough for hunting big game, there is only one crossbow you need, the Excalibur Matrix 380 Crossbow package.

Excalibur Matrix 380 Crossbow Package

Not many hunters use recurve bows for crossbow deer hunting as compared to compound bows. However, recurve bows are still a great option, especially the Excalibur Matrix 360 Crossbow.

This crossbow is as beautiful as it is powerful.

As its name suggests, this Excalibur is able to deliver arrows into targets at a stunning velocity of 380 FPS. This equals to an impressive 109 pounds of kinetic energy.

The draw speed of this crossbow stands at an astounding 260 pounds, meaning that you would have to be Hulk to cock it by hand. Thankfully, the package is inclusive of a rope cocking mechanism.

For safety, the bow features an anti-dry-fire system that prevents the bow from firing if it does not have an arrow nocked.

The bow comes with a set of Diablo 18 inch arrows.


  • Features a compact recurve design
  • The crossbow comes with four quality Diablo arrows
  • There is a rope cocking device included in the package
  • There is a high-quality scope attached to it


  • The scope is not as good as expected


  • 260-pound draw weight
  • 380 FPS
  • Egro-Grip stock
  • Realtree Xtra finish
  • 4 Diablo arrows
  • Anti-dry fire scope mount

This crossbow is ideal for professional cross bow deer hunting. As is evident from the above Excalibur crossbow review, this crossbow is high-performance bow. Therefore, I recommend this only to hunters who have been in the game for a long time.

Best Crossbow For Small Game & Target Practice

When all you want is to hunt small game or to practice, you will want a crossbow that is light and is not overly powerful. There are several crossbows that you can choose, one of which is the Barnett Outdoors Brotherhood crossbow package.

Barnett Outdoors Brotherhood Crossbow Package

I got to try out the Barnett Outdoors Brotherhood crossbow, and I have to say I was truly impressed as my Barnett Brotherhood crossbow review will reveal.

At the heart of this bow, brilliance is its firing velocity.

This Barnett fires arrows at 350 FPS, which is enough to penetrate through an engine block if not pierce a deer’s skin.

I cannot say that I was pleased with its 21-inch width, but given it uses a CROSSWIRE string and cable system it is quite easy to cock by hand.

Also, it is compatible with crank cocking devices.

The trigger has a pull weight of 3.5 pounds, meaning it is smooth. Attached to the crossbow is a 4X32 multi-reticle scope.


  • Can be cocked by hand thanks to its string and cable system
  • It is lightweight
  • This bow is powerful enough to take down most legal game
  • Comes with a good quality 3X42 scope


  • This bow is loud, and you will have to invest in sound suppressors


  • 160-pound draw weight
  • 350 FPS velocity
  • High-energy cam system
  • ADF trigger
  • Three 20 inch Headhunter arrows
  • 4X32 multi-reticle scope

Given that it is a loud shooter, be careful when taking it out to hunt. If you lack suppressors, I recommend using it for target practice. On the other hand, if you do get sound suppressors, this bow can be the best for cross bow hunting deer.

Best Accurate Crossbow

If accuracy is what you are looking for, then you will have to search for a crossbow designed for accuracy. One of the most accurate crossbow is the Barnett Quad 400 crossbow package.

Barnett Quad 400 Crossbow Package

The Barnett Quad 400 Crossbow is one of Barnett’s bestselling crossbows and for good reasons. Similar to all the other bows on this list, this Barnett is pretty powerful.

It can dish out up to 106 pounds of kinetic energy thanks to its 345 FPS of firing velocity.

With a draw weight of 150 pounds, this is a bow that requires a rope cocking device to cock.

In the quiver that comes as part of the package, you get three 22 inch arrows.

Also added in this package is a 4X32 scope that greatly improves the accuracy of this bow.


  • Comes with an insert where you can install a hand-crack cocking device
  • The bow comes with either a red dot or a 4X32 scope
  • Comes with a five-year unlimited manufacturer’s warranty
  • Features a quiver with three 22 inch arrows


  • This bow does not come with a cocking device


  • Quick detach quiver
  • Three 22 inch arrows
  • 4X32 scope
  • 345 FPS firing velocity
  • Gas assist stock
  • 9-pound weight
  • 112 draw weight

This crossbow has all that a hunter needs. In this regard, this crossbow is best for deer hunting. Also, it makes a good bow for target practice.


There are many crossbows that you can use on your next crossbow deer hunt. However, not all will give you the desired results. In essence, you will have to get the best crossbow for the money to satisfy your needs. Fortunately, for you all the crossbows reviewed above make great deer hunting crossbows. It is my hope that these reviews and the crossbow hunting tips above have been of great help to you.


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