compound bow reviews inexpensive bows PSE single cam bow

PSE Sinister Review

An image of PSE Sinister
PSE Sinister

PSE Sinister is a unique design combining high performance, great maneuverability, forgiveness and great price. An almost impossible mix. Almost. The IBO speeds of 327 ftp would satisfy any bow hunter. In dense woods an ultra-compact 28” axle to axle brace height will be a bless. The forgiving 7-1/4″ brace height can be helpful after hours spent on a tree stand. Due to its single cam eccentric system tuning of this compound is very easy and maintenance is minimal. The icing on the cake is the affordable price tag on the bow. This rig was made with bow hunting in mind and scores high in all customer reviews. PSE Sinister is specially praised for its excellent value to price ratio.

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The riser of Sinister is made of strong and very light aluminium. It is exceptionally short and has large cutouts which bring its weight down. The riser has a classical for PSE bows shape and features a vibration dampener on the front.

An image of the Raptor grip on PSE Sinister
Raptor grip

There is also a new cable guard system mounted on the front of the riser. The cable guard slides smoothly along the slider ensuring quiet and reliable operation. It has rounded edges to prevent damage to the string.

PSE Sinister features a slim Raptor Grip that promotes proper hand placement. Its width is is enough to enable grip relaxation and at the same time narrow enough to minimize grip torque. The rubber plates on the side of the grip can be either red or black.

Limbs of the PSE Sinister

The heavily preloaded composite limbs are in past parallel position. They have a high percentage of fully stressed working area on the limb which makes them highly efficient in storing and releasing the kinetic energy. Sinister is equipped with Brute X limb pockets that hold the limbs in place. Because they are longer than usual pockets there is more contact between the limb and the pocket which greatly promote proper limb alignment. The limb support is made of composite materials and features delrin bushings which guarantee perfect limb position during the shooting cycle. This system also allows for quick and simple draw length adjustment in the range between 50 and 70 pounds.

Eccentric System (cam)

An image of the AMP cam
AMP cam

PSE Sinister is a single cam compound which makes is a perfect choice for anyone that appreciate simplicity and reliability of such designs. At the same time due to the unique design of the famous AMP Cam it can deliver generous 327 ftp which by all means is a great result and something you wouldn’t expect from a single cam bow with such forgiving brace height. In fact Sinister comes with the exact same cam as Prophecy, the fastest single cam bow ever produced. The increased strength and reduced weight of this eccentric system was achieved by application of 7075 aircraft grade aluminum.

Thanks to second generation posi-lock inner cam the draw length adjustment is quick and easy without a need of a bow press or additional cam modules. The adjustment range of the draw length is 25.5 ” – 30.5 ” in half inch increments. On the outer ring of the cam is a set of draw stops which can be easily changed with a hex key. The engagements on outer ring, inner ring and the posi-lock cam help making the adjustments and prevent from incorrect positioning of the screws.
This cam system offers 75% let-off and due to the shape of AMP cam and reliable sealed bearings provide smooth draw cycle.

Finish Options

PSE Sinister comes with the following finish options:

  • BREAK-UP INFINITY – both limbs and riser come in a great camo pattern by Mossy Oak that provide unmatched realism and contrast in order to break up a hunter’s silhouette.
  • BLACK CAMO – limbs are in BREAK-UP INFINITY camo and riser is black,
  • ALL BLACK – both limbs and riser are black,
  • SKULLWORKS BLACK – a black and white camo pattern on both limbs and riser.

The default finish option for most packages (including Ready-To-Shoot and Field-Ready packages) is BREAK-UP INFINITY. For each of the finish options there is a matching set of accessories available.

Vibration and noise reduction

Thanks to the new VibraCheck Limb Dampener band system eliminates after shot vibrations. They are made from specifically formulated elastomer for maximal absorption. The band is shaped in such a way that can either be installed on separate quad limbs or lock with a second band to work in tandem. VaibraCheck dampeners are available in several different color options.
After shot string oscillations in PSE Sinister were virtually eliminated by VibraCheck Backstop 2 system. It prevents the string from producing any noise. The Backstop 2 dampener is highly adjustable and needs to be tuned if you change the draw weight of the bow. It’s made from lightweight aluminium and allows for ¼ inch lateral adjustments. The bumper can be optimally positioned thanks to pivoting mount. It also has additional lateral micro adjustment for fine tuning.

Summary of the review


  • ultra-compact 28” A2A length;
  • generous IBO speed of 327 fps;
  • forgiving brace height of 7.25”;
  • low price tag.


  • narrow valley.

>Check discounted price of PSE Sinister on Amazon<

Bear compound bow reviews single cam bow

Bear Legion Review

Image of the Bear Archery Legion with ready to hunt package
Bear Archery Legion with ready to hunt package.

Bear Legion would be an excellent choice for someone seeking a compact, high quality and fast rig. The surprisingly low price tag has made this bow very popular among advanced users who are on the budget but don’t want to compromise on performance. It has been highly praised by users that shot it in variety of situations. Legion is proven to perform well both in the hunting scenarios and while you practice target shooting. Bear’s quality noise and vibration reduction mechanisms have made this bow virtually silent and eliminated any hank shock. Over 60 years of experience enabled Bear to produce a bow that impresses even the pros with it smoothness and reliability. At the same time Bear Legion is so forgiving and easy to adjust that even beginners can use it. This compound scores high in customer reviews for its performance, smoothness and lack of after shot vibrations. The weak point according to some users and their personal preference is the string which is by no means inferior quality.

>Check discounted price of Bear Legion on Amazon<


Legion’s riser has a classic for Bear archery bows shape with large cutouts. It features integrated dual string suppressors and a stainless steel stabilizer mounting. The aircraft grade aluminum riser despite its low weight stands out in terms of rigidity resulting in high torsional stability.

An image of the grip used in Bear Legion
Grip used in Bear Legion

Bear Legion comes with thin grip with side plates known from other Bear’s rigs. It has ergonomic shape and enforces proper hand placement. Most users appreciate the stability and lack of torque it offers, however its ascetic construction offers no thermal insulation hence if you’re planning to use in the winter gloves will be necessary.
The grip has a screwed in plates with white Bear logo on a black background.


Bear_Archery_LogoBear Legion comes with split limbs positioned parallelly to nullify hand kick. They are made of extensible composite materials which makes them powerful, lightweight and durable. The shape and materials of Legions pre-loaded limbs enable uniform force distribution during the draw cycle and eliminates deflection.

Legion’s limbs are locked in place by Bear’s renowned Zero Tolerance Limb Pockets. This system not only provide ideal consistency and precision but also absorbs after shot vibrations.

Eccentric System (Cam)

Legion is a single cam bow and thus requires minimal maintenance and eliminates the necessity of cam synchronization. Bear Archery equipped it with a Modular E2-Cam. It allows for half inch increments in the rage of 26″ to 31″. The adjustment can be done with hex key (not included in the package) and a bow press is not required to do so. The idler wheel has a dual stainless steel sealed bearings which increase smoothness of operation and provide reliability. E2-Cam eccentrics provide generous 318 fps IBO speeds and thanks to their shape the draw cycle is smooth. This combined with 80% let-off and a solid back wall makes the bow very comfortable in use.


Image of RealTree APG camo pattern used in Bear Legion
RealTree APG camo pattern

Legion comes in a light and neutrally toned Realtree APG camo pattern. The coating is high quality and quite thick which ensures durability.

Vibration and noise reduction

Dual offset string suppressors mounted on the riser deaden string oscillations and eliminate noise. They were designed, optimized and meticulously tested using high-speed photography methods to ensure highest effectiveness in noise reduction with no compromise on the arrow speed. There is also an adjustment mechanism so you can tuned is according to your preferences.

The after shoot limb vibration and hand kick were eliminated by application of parallel positioned limbs and Zero Tolerance Two-Piece pockets.

If you buy Legion with Ready To Hunt Package you will also get a Shockstop stabilizer by Trophy Ridge that efficiently absorbs any residual vibrations.

Ready to hunt package
This package include a set of Trophy Ridge accessories, such as:

  • Whisker Biscuit – black in color with brown fibers;
  • 3-Pin Sight – can be easily adjusted for right or left hand use;
  • Stabilizer with Sling;
  • Wheel Peep Sight;
  • Quiver;
  • Nock Loop.

Review summary


  • Good price to quality ratio;
  • High quality finish;
  • Easy to adjust.


  • Ascetic grip;
  • String.

>Check discounted price of Bear Legion on Amazon<

compound bow reviews Mathews single cam bow

Mathews Creed review

Mathews Creed - a single cam compound bow
Mathews Creed

The new simplistic or even ascetic design by Mathews combines forgiveness known from its predecessor Z7 with surprisingly low weight. Creed with its short A2A of only 30”, high speed, low weight and comfortable and forgiving 7” brace height is an ideal setup for a bowhunter. It is also highly praised for very smooth draw cycle which is due to application of advanced SimPlex Cam technology.

>Check discounted price of Mathews Creed on Amazon<


Mathews Creed comes with the Geo Grid Lock riser known from from Heli-M. Its further improvement of the Grid Lock technology based on interlocking bridges connecting riser’s front and back edges and giving it extreme stiffness along with low weight. The recent improvement in this technology resulted in introduction of GeoGrid Lock riser bringing the weight even lower.
Creed comes with either Walnut SlimFit Inline grip or Focus grip depending on the finish you choose. The first one is quite slim yet very comfortable. It has a distinct line at the back facilitating proper hand placement. Being made of wood it’s nice and warm in touch. Focus Grip is also slim and ergonomic with a line at the back. It’s made of rubber and there are several colors of this grip to choose from.


After extensive studies of efficiency Mathews decided to use split limbs with Creed making it the first single-cam bow in the history of this company with type of limbs. They are in parallel position and can be adjusted in the range of 50 to 70 lbs.


The new SimPlex Cam that was used in Creed is made of 7075-T6 Aluminium which makes it extremely strong and lightweight. Due to its shape the draw cycle is very smooth. The efficiency is further increased by application of sealed bearings which minimize friction. One can choose a draw length in the range from 26” to 30”. The draw length can be adjusted in half-inch increments.


Mathews Creed comes in three versions:

  1. Black,
  2. Lost Camo,
  3. Tactical.

It is possible to mix the first two together. The Tactical finish is often slightly more expensive and features Focus Grip instead of Walnut SlimFit present in Black and Lost Camo versions.
Further customization can be achieved by changing colors of the dampeners and rubber of the grip (Focus Grip).

Vibration and noise reduction

Any string oscillation after the shot are captured by the Dead End String Stop Lite which is a lighter but equally effective version of Mathews Dead End String Stop.
Riser vibrations are deadened by two dampeners, one on the top and one on the bottom of the riser. The upper one is Mathews Harmonic dampener while the lower one is its lighter version, Mathews Harmonic Dampener Lite.

Mathews Creed specyfications

IBO speed (fps)328
A2A length (inches)30
draw weights available (lbs)50, 60, 70
draw length range (inches)26 - 30
brace height (inches)7
bow weight (lbs)3,85
eccentricsSimPlex Cam
let off (%)80
finishBlack, Lost Camo, Tactical

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compound bow reviews PSE single cam bow

PSE Prophecy review

PSE Prophecy Compound bow image
PSE Prophecy

PSE Prophecy gained its popularity by being the fastest single-cam compound bow on the market. This rig offers unparalleled smooth draw for a bow that produces 340 fps IBO speed. It’s definitely a great choice for those who are looking for a fast compound bow but also appreciate the reliability of simple designs. The neutral 32″ AtA length makes this bow universal. This bow has been reviewed by both advanced users as well as people with very little experience and both groups found it extraordinary. For our review of PSE Prophecy see the article below, specifications of the bow are at the bottom of the page.

>Check discounted price of PSE Prophecy on Amazon<


PSE Prophecy comes with a riser technology reserved for high end models. The planar flex riser reduces both sideways as well as front to back torque increasing the accuracy of the bow. It was achieved by application not only high tech materials but also a specific architecture based on straight lines. This structural changes were introduced in order to maximize the precision of this rig. It is difficult to spot with a naked eye but the effect of this changes is appreciated by anyone who shot this bow – the accuracy is nothing but amazing.

Depending on your preference you will be able to mount your preferred sight with no problems as the riser of this bow is equipped with several holes for your convenience.

Another feature of the riser aimed at increasing accuracy is the Raptor grip that forces proper hand hand placement. It’s thinner than average grip but comfortable in use. Both sides of the grip include small rubber plates that can be either black or red.


The AMP cam enables the bow to shoot at 340 fps, which is impressive for a single cam rig.  As all PSE cams it provide an extremely smooth draw and thanks to its unique design enforces a perfect nock travel. It it extremely durable and lightweight. For additional efficiency the cam was equipped with sealed bearings and wide grooves preventing the string from derailing. The inner cam is easily adjustable (range: 25-30 inches, increments: half-inch). You wont need a bow press or any special equipment for the adjustment. The cam has engraved markings and posi-lock pin to make it even easier if needed.


The PSE’s new, ground-breaking X-Technology enabled to cross the barrier of 330 fts with single-cam rig. These split limbs sit tight in pivoting limb pockets enabling easy draw weight adjustment whilst keeping the perfect limb to riser adjustment. The limbs are pre-stressed and parallel to each other which eliminate limb vibrations and after-shot kick.

Finish of the bow

As all bows by PSE this model features high standard of finish. There are no issues with longevity or uneven wear. PSE Prophecy comes in four different versions: Mossy Oak Break-Up Infinity, Skullworks, Black Camo and Black. As with all PSE bows the materials are of highest quality which makes them durable and elegant.

Vibration and noise reduction

To minimize vibration and noise the split limbs sit tight in Brute X pivoting limb pockets. Limb vibrations are also dampened by Vibracheck limb band dampeners that are included in the package and can be changed without a need of a bowpress. The string oscillation is captured by adjustable Vibracheck Backstop 2 to eliminate noise.

Video review of the the PSE prophecy

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PSE Prophecy specyfications

IBO speed (fps)340
A2A length (inches)32
draw weights available (lbs)50, 60, 70
draw length range (inches)25 - 30
brace height (inches)6
bow weight (lbs)4.1
eccentricsAMP cam
let off (%)75
finishMossy Oak Break-Up Infinity, Skullworks, Black Camo and Black.
compound bow reviews inexpensive bows PSE single cam bow

PSE Stinger 3G review

PSE Stinger compound bow image
PSE Stinger 3G

PSE (Precision Shooting Equipment) Archery is one of the leading compound bow manufacturers in the world. The company was set up in Illinois in 1971 and since then secured a number of patents for compound bow’s innovations. Among other manufacturers PSE Archery boast the longest tradition in compound bow production.
Stinger is by far the most popular bow ever made by PSE. Due to its low price tag combined with quality of build this model is often recommended for beginners. More experienced users talk about it with undisguised affection. Recently PSE decided to redesigned and modernize its famous bow. The works on Stinger began many years ago, every couple of months some slight change was introduced making it better and better. The latest version of PSE Stinger 3G is the product of all that effort and time spent on finding and eliminating even the slightest imperfections. All the knowledge and experience that PSE gained developing its high-end models  was focused on producing this affordable bow. It has been also substantially upgraded. In fact the upgrades are so extensive that if you compare the parameters of Stinger with bows from much higher price-range you will find no differences. Introduction of such model into the market had a tremendous effect – most archery shops admit that PSE Stinger 3G is their top seller and scores highest reviews.

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Changes in the New PSE Stinger 3G

So many things were changed in this design that it could easily be sold as a different model, a much higher price-range model. The most important changes introduced by PSE to its latest Stinger include:

  • thinline grip reducing vibration;
    An image of the thinline grip of PSE Stinger 3g
    The thinline grip of PSE Stinger 3G
  • metal pivoting limb pockets for additional noise reduction;
  • integrated string stop;
  • new cam system;
  • riser based on PSE X-Force model.

Our review of PSE Stinger 3G

The fist impression is always important and with Stinger it was nothing but positive. All the parts are made of quality materials which not only makes this bow to be a top performer but also look aesthetically. It comes in three different finish versions: Mossy Oak Break-Up Infinty  (greenish camouflage), Skullworks Camo (black and white camouflage) and Black (black riser with Skullworks Camo limbs). The Skullworks Camo version is a default one and also the most popular one. All finishes are of high quality, do not fade over time and are durable even in harsh conditions during hunting sessions.

The setup is very intuitive and user friendly, even if you have no experience with compound bows (the manual is very comprehensive). You will be able to make all the necessary adjustments yourself to perfectly tune the bow to your needs.

Riser and limbs

Latest version of Stinger 3G features completely redesigned riser made of machined 6061 T6 aluminum, which provides exceptional structural stability. By being very light it also enables to keep the overall weight of the rig to minimum. As it was mentioned before Stinger was developed on the basis of best concepts that have been tested and proved to be successful. The design of the riser that after few tweaks is used in new Stinger 3G can be found in one of the previous models of PSE bows, namely X-Force.

The riser also features a new grip called Vibracheck which is made of special rubber. The shape is ergonomic and nicely fit in the hand. Additionally the material used in the grip was designed to dampen vibrations.

At its ends the riser features firm and durable aluminium limb pockets. They hold the limbs in such a way that  keeps them almost parallel to each other. Thanks to parallel limb design vibrations and after-shot kick are eliminated. The limbs are kept pre-stressed at rest which gives optimal performance. The limbs bolts in this bow are exceptionally long which gives a huge room for adjustment if needed. unlike most bows that offer 10 pounds adjustments range, this model offers 30 pounds! If you wish you can instantly reduce the draw weight of the bow by 30 pounds using adjustment screws. No special equipment or knowledge is needed.


Stinger 3G is a single cam bow featuring a HP cam system. It produces a smooth draw and is easily adjustable. The draw length can be easily adjusted using Allen key. Adjustment is available in a range between 25 and 30 inches in half inch increments.

Image of the HP cam used in Stinger 3G
HP cam used in Stinger

The smooth draw cycle of Stinger is nothing but amazing. This is probably the single feature of this rig that most archers and bow hunters keep in their memory even after many years and many other bows.

Summary of Our PSE Stinger review

Stinger 3G is already a legend. There is no archer or bow hunter that have not heard of this bow and this is probably the best recommendation to get this bow.

Best bow for beginners

In numerous surveys PSE Stinger 3G was voted the best compound bow for beginners. The forgiveness that comes with the 7 ¾ brace height and an exceptionally smooth draw cycle provided my the single cam makes it very accurate even in untrained hands.

You do not have to worry to outgrow Stinger in the near future. The quality of the design, its performance, extras coming with the bow and unmatched price make this bow also a very popular choice among more advanced users that are short on cash.

New Stinger 3G has been notably praised by numerous users for the minimal level of vibrations and noise. As all the previous generations of this great compound bow the overall quality is comparable only with much higher priced bows. Similarly as its predecessors Stinger 3G scores very high in numerous customer and professional reviews. With its renowned accuracy and forgiveness the PSE Stinger is definitely the best dollar-for-dollar deal you can find on the market.


  • Price,
  • High quality,
  • Easily adjustable draw length
  • Modern design
  • Forgiveness
  • Low level of noise and vibration.


  • String. Some users noticed peep sight rotation and decided to upgrade the bowstring after some time.

>Check discounted price of PSE Stinger on Amazon<

PSE Stinger 3G specyfications

IBO speed (fps)314
A2A length (inches)33
draw weights available (lbs)50, 60, 70
draw length range (inches)25.5 - 30.5
brace height (inches)7.75
bow weight (lbs)4.7
eccentricsHP cam with posi-lock inner cam
let off (%)75
finishMossy Oak Break-Up Infinty, Skullworks Camo