Best Crossbow Under 500 Dollars – Learn From The Experts!

Truth be told, crossbows are more fun and less strenuous than compound bows. But, are also more expensive with some costing upwards of $1000. Nonetheless, there is no need for you to spend thousands of dollars on a crossbow.

For less than $500 there are some pretty decent crossbows out there. Finding the best crossbow under 500 isn’t easy though. There are literally hundreds of crossbow options to choose from and not all of them are worth your money.

In this article we will be looking at the best crossbow under $500. That is the crossbows that will give you the most bang for your buck. We have scoured the internet and engaged with hunters and archers to come up with a list of over twenty crossbows.

And while we could have easily reviewed all twenty plus crossbows we decided to narrow the list down to five. That being said, here are out top five picks of the best crossbow package under 500.

These five have been selected based on performance, accuracy and ease of use. In a nutshell, they can be used by both pros and beginners.


The 5 Best Crossbows Under $500


Barnett 78128 Whitetail Hunter II 350 FPS Crossbow

  • 150 pounds draw weight
  • 350 FPS
  • 4x32 scope included

Choosing which crossbow would occupy our number one spot was not easy. Nonetheless, at the end of the day, the Barnett Whitetail Hunter II slightly edged out the other nominees. So what does it offer?

The quality of the build

This is an entry-level budget crossbow, but Barnett still put in the same care in its construction they would in a premium crossbow. The result is a high-quality aluminum rail and a bow that weighs 6.4 pounds.

When cocked it measured 16.125 inches in width, making it compact and easy to maneuver in tight spots. It offers the right balance of power, weight and builds quality, which is why it edges out the other nominees to our number one spot.

The shooting speed

Speaking of power, this compact crossbow is capable of sending arrows flying towards your target at 350 feet per second with 103 ft. lbs of kinetic energy. Thus it is no slouch. Its combination of power and compactness makes it the best hunting crossbow under 500.

What about the draw weight?

What really surprised me about this crossbow is the draw weight. It has a manageable draw weight of 150 pounds. It has one of the lightest draw weights of any crossbow I have ever used. Meaning it appeals to beginners as well as pros

Pros

  • It is lightweight weighing only 6.4 pounds
  • It is narrow across the limbs making it easy to use in a tree stand
  • It has a fantastic speed of up to 350 FPS
  • Comes with a Realtree Xtra camo for year-round hunting

Cons

  • Was a bit louder than what I expected
  • Due to its Dryfire protection, the only way to de-cock a cocked arrow is by firing it, which can be an inconvenience when on a hunt

Verdict

As mentioned this Barnett entry level crossbow offers the perfect balance of power, compactness, and weight. And thanks to its draw weight can be used by beginners as well as by professionals. This makes it the best crossbow for hunting under $500.


CenterPoint Tormentor Whisper 380 Camo- Crossbow Package

  • Whisper silence system
  • 14-inch axle to axle cocked width
  • Fiberglass quad limbs

CenterPoint managed to put together a premium crossbow and offer it at an affordable price. Priced slightly under $500, the Tormentor Whisper 380 has the quality of a bow priced $200 more than its price?

The construction and design

Assembling the Tormentor Whisper took me a few minutes. The finished product looked really well made. When cocked it measured 14 inches axle to axle, which was impressive for a bow within its price point.

One of the things that robbed this bow of the top spot is its weight. It weighs 7.9 pounds, which is considerably more than the Barnett. All the same, this Centerpoint masterpiece does keep up with its competitor in other areas.

How powerful is it?

For instance, compared to the Barnett and other similar priced bows, this is quite powerful. It is capable of shooting 400-grain arrows at 380 feet per second. This is backed by a 120 ft lbs of kinetic energy.

How is the draw weight?

Another thing that prevents this crossbow from occupying out top spot is the draw weight. At 185 pounds it is more than the average draw weight of most crossbows. However, it is not something that cannot be managed easily by most male shooters.

First-time crossbow shooters will struggle a bit with this crossbow due to its beyond average weight and draw weight.

Pros

  • Has an impressive shooting speed of 380 FPS for 400-grain arrows
  • Very narrow axle to axle width of 14 inches makes it maneuverable
  • It is very quiet compared to some of the other bows on the list
  • Has some excellent safety mechanisms

Cons

  • Weighing 7.9 pounds and 9.2 pounds with accessories it is not the lightest crossbow out there
  • The arrows included in the package aren’t of the best quality.

Verdict

This is not the kind of crossbow you get if you are a first-time crossbow hunter. It is more suited to experienced male hunters and shooters. All the same, it offers up some exciting features such as the shooting speed and compact design. It can be used to hunt in tight positions such as in a tree stand or ground blind.


Barnett Whitetail Pro STR Crossbow

  • 400FPS shooting speed
  • 4x32 illuminated scope included
  • 165lbs draw weight

Barnett’s STR platform was previously reserved for the company’s high-performance premium crossbows. So you can bet I was eager to try out the affordable Whitetail Pro STR crossbow. The STR platform is designed to shift weight from the riser to the stock for improved stability.

First impressions

My first impression of the Whitetail Pro STR was of the bow’s construction. As with any other Barnett product, this bow looks very well made. It’s also easy on the eyes thanks to its dark Tru Bark camo.

The axle to axle width of the bow when cocked was slightly less than 18 inches. Not as impressive as that of the Centerpoint but it is still ideal for shooting in tight spots. As for the draw weight, it is a manageable 165 pounds.

Included with the crossbow is Barnett’s crank cocking device. This adds up to make this crossbow ideal for all types of shooters and hunters.

The shooting speed

Where this crossbow really excels is in the shooting department. This baby pumps out some serious kinetic energy capable of taking down most big game animals. As for the speed, it sends arrows flying at a sizzling 400 feet per second.

At this price range, you will be hard pressed to find another crossbow that can match the power and speed of the Whitetail STR. When it comes to power and speed, this is the best crossbow under 500 dollars.

Overall package performance

For hunting this crossbow is amazing. Thanks to the cocking mechanism, even a ten-year-old can cock it. Also, it weighs less than 7 pounds meaning you will have no problems hauling it about on a hunt.

Pros

  • Has a fantastic shooting speed of up to 400 FPS
  • It is a very accurate crossbow thanks to the STR platform
  • There is a string dampener that greatly reduces the sound
  • It weighs 6.9 pounds making it one of the more lighter crossbows out there
  • It comes with an illuminated 4x32 scope

Cons

  • The accuracy of the crossbow reduces beyond 40 yards
  • The package does not come with a carrying sling.

Verdict

The best crossbow for hunting needs to be lightweight, easy to cock on the go and have a scope. The Pro STR has all this features, making it one of the best crossbows for hunting. Also given its weights and included cocking mechanism it is ideal for all types of hunters.



Wicked Ridge by TenPoint Invader G3 Crossbow Package

  • Tenpoint 3X multi-line scope included
  • 19-inch axle to axle width when cocked
  • 165lbs draw weight

Tenpoint is known for producing high-end crossbows. So I was curious to know how its more budget-friendly line of crossbows compare to the company’s other offerings. The Wicked Ridge Invade G3 is one of the budget crossbows from Tenpoint.

The draw weight and overall weight

This Tenpoint crossbow is your average beginner friendly crossbow. Its 165lbs draw weight is well within the accepted standard for such a crossbow. Also, it is a compact bow that does not weight a lot.

Overall the crossbow weighs 6.6 pounds. It is thus one of the lightest crossbows within this price point. In terms, of length, it measures 37.75 inches which is also within the accepted range for such a crossbow.

The performance

As with its draw weight and overall weight, the performance of this crossbow is not extraordinary. Nonetheless, given its price tag, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The 330 FPS speed is acceptable.

On the other hand, the 19-inch axle to axle width is ideal for shooting in tight positions. The powerful limbs, raiser, and energy wheel combine to offer a smooth performance.

Safety features and trigger

I was impressed with a 3.5-pound trigger on this crossbow. It is easy to pull and does not feel too soft. A dry fire inhibitor is also included that prevents too much damage to the crossbow. This inhibitor helps ensure consistent accuracy.

Pros

  • Comes with a scope included
  • There is also a three-arrow instant-detach quiver included in the package
  • Weighing 6.6 pounds, it is lightweight
  • It is also compact for shooting in tight positions
  • Comes with a locking mechanism

Cons

  • The speed is not as impressive as that of other similarly priced models
  • The axle to axle width is wider than that of other similarly priced models

Verdict

The Tenpoint Invader G3 is a basic beginner crossbow made by one of the best crossbow manufacturers out there. This means its quality and performance are at par with other similarly priced and even pricier models.


Excalibur Crossbow, Matrix GRZ 2 Package Realtree Xtra

  • 18 inches long
  • 200 lbs draw weight
  • 5.5 lbs overall weight

The last entrant on our list is the Excalibur Matrix GRZ 2 package. This crossbow is the lightest on the list. So why is it last? Well, while it has a lot to offer it also falls behind in some aspects. Nonetheless, it is a great crossbow for its price.

Power and speed

While it is the lightest on the list, it is also the slowest. However, this is not a bad thing. Capable of sending arrows flying at speeds of 305 FPS it is no slouch. This speed is enough for hunting most animals.

Construction and design

What it lacks in speed it more than makes up for in the design. Weighing 5.5 pounds, it is one of the lightest crossbows. The Realtree Xtra camo that is applied all over the crossbow is another plus in regards to its design.

Safety features

Excalibur invested a lot in this crossbow’s safety features. The feather lite skeletonized stock has finger guards. There is also a rope cocking aid included that helps in cocking. And with 200-pound draw weight, this cocking aid is necessary.

Pros

  • Is one of the most lightweight crossbows at this price point
  • Comes with a four-arrow quiver included
  • There is a rope cocking aid included
  • A fixed power scope with 1-inch rings is also included in the package
  • The black tactical Realtree Xtra camo is great for all year round hunting

Cons

  • It has a pretty heavy draw weight of 200 pounds
  • The shooting speed is not all that exciting

Verdict

This crossbow is no doubt without its fair share of drawbacks. But it is still a decent crossbow for its price tag. Also, there aren’t many crossbows that are as light as this one. Of course, the draw weight is a bit of a turn-off, but there is a cocking aid included.


Frequently Asked Questions

Question: What is the average weight of the best crossbow under $500

Answer: Most crossbows weigh between 5 pounds and 7 pounds. However, there are some that weigh more than 7 pounds. Essentially, the ideal crossbow, especially for beginners, is one that weighs less than 7 pounds.

Question: Do the best crossbow under 500 dollars have a scope attached?


Answer: Most crossbows under the 500 dollars come with a scope attached. However, these scopes are usually mediocre given the overall price tag of the bow. Therefore, while some do come with scopes, it is always a nice idea to buy a better one.

Question: What is the average draw weight of the best crossbow under $500

Answer: Draw weight is an important factor to consider when shopping for any type of crossbow irrespective of your budget. On average crossbows under the 500 price tag have a draw weight of between 150 lbs and 200 lbs?

Question: What is the average draw weight of the best crossbow under $500

Answer: Draw weight is an important factor to consider when shopping for any type of crossbow irrespective of your budget. On average crossbows under the 500 price tag have a draw weight of between 150 lbs and 200 lbs?

A draw weight of 200lbs is on the higher side. Most shooters both beginners and pros are better served by a draw weight of fewer than 200 lbs.


Conclusion

Crossbows are amazing for hunting. As such, to get the whole crossbow hunting experience, you will need a quality crossbow. And due to how costly they can be to manufacture crossbows cost considerably more than standard bows.

Nonetheless, there are a lot of decent crossbows in the under 500 price tag. When looking for the best crossbow under 500, it is important to consider the quality. Some offer additional features, while others are best for hunting specific types of game.

All the same, the best crossbow under $500 is one that can best serve you.

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