Getting a decent compound bow under $500 that is not a kid toy is not just confusing but also very difficult to find.
Yes, you can easily find lots of flagship models that provide promising results and a warranty but an affordable bow in the 500 categories that will full fill your need is not easy as you think.
Because most bow manufacturer makes high-priced bow with competitive quality and technology, they just don’t compromise anything about quality.
But archers like you who are looking for an upgrade that will be easier for your wallet and meet your preference. Don’t need to worry, I have researched and added some of the best compound bows under 500.
They are reasonably priced and have very good maneuverability, durability, accuracy, forgiveness, and speed scores. Also, their noise and vibration level are very low.
Try these sub $500 bows, you will get the promised result and everything you are looking for.
Best Compound Bows under $500
Bear Archery Paradox
Bear Archery is a leading bow manufacturer for making great value budget bows. They always come with some innovative top-notch compound bow ideas that do not fail to impress the user and Bear Archery Paradox is one of the prime examples of that.
Bear Archery Paradox is a single-cam 32-inch Axle to Axle length compound bow packed with power. In the full draw length setting you can shoot the arrow with 330 fps IBO speed definitely not a starter bow, generally, we notice this amount of speed in high-priced bows. It’s just a pro-level hunting bow that can immobilize any size of the game in 45 to 55 yards. Its 6 and quarter-inch brace height also influences it to reach this amount of speed though this amount of brace height is pretty normal at this age.
I should inform you the fact that you definitely not gonna get the max 330 fps speed if your draw length does not match the max draw length of this bow which is 30 inches. It’s actually pretty common that arrow speed will go down with your lower draw length and draw weight adjustment.
You can find your comfortable draw length from its 23.5 – 30.5 draw length adjustment range. You can also pick the available model from the draw weight adjustment of 45 to 60 pounds or 55 to 70 pounds model according to your strength and comfort.
And because of its solo cam system, you will be able to draw at blazing speeds, also Thanks to its contraband string and the single-cam combo, you will be able to observe the sensation of an ultra-smooth draw cycle. It also has 80% let-off which means you have to hold only 20% of draw weight in full draw means you can take your time when you are aiming for your prey in the wood.
As well as you will experience high-level enjoyment due to its lightweight and well-balanced innovative riser. The riser is engineered to deliver a high level of performance and to make equipping easy with custom accessories like bow sight. Also, its innovative riser design with two shock wave limb bolts at the top and bottom of the riser absorbs the vibration and noise and helps the bow become a little bit quieter as well as increases its accuracy and stability.
It comes with Realtree Edge color it’s really a good camo and nice to look at as well. Yes, you can choose other colors too as it comes with 3 different camouflage pattern options to choose from, I am just suggesting what I like most.
As well now The paradox is available in the ready-to-hunt package and it’s gonna cost you 500 dollars and some extra bucks with the bow itself. The packages come with all the basic accessories for a complete entry-level setup such as 4 pin sight with a level and a sight light as well as a stabilizer mounted on the bow, a rubber tubing self-tuning peep serving with a pre-setup D-Loop. Also, you are going to get a good easily detachable quiver, an arrow rest, and a wrist sling.
One thing I should clear you because I notice lots of people screaming that there are no arrows it’s not a complete package etc. Actually, it’s not coming with any arrow set and release aid. So you have to buy the arrows yourself according to your wing span or draw length size.
Finally, with all the accessories it becomes slightly heavier Weighing 5.8 pounds. It is not too heavy either which effect maneuverability just comparing other compound bows. It’s really an awesome bow at a reasonable price.
Diamond Archery Edge 320
Talking about a $500 price bow and not adding Diamond Archery Edge 320 is not gonna happen. Everyone knows about this bow. Actually, Diamond Archery is one of the most well-known brands in the world of archery owned by Bowtech. One of their most popular best-selling bows is the Diamond Edge SB-1 and the Edge 320 was launched to replace the Edge SB-1.
Unlike the Bear Archery Paradox, Edge 320 is a more lightweight, adjustable, versatile, and forgiving bow. Also with its 7 to 70 pounds draw weight adjustment range as well as a huge draw length range, of 15 – 31 inches, you can find your preferable draw weight and length easily or can shift any time you want. But its IBO speed is less than the Paradox that’s why I place it in the second position.
Using the Binary cam system of Bowtech, Edge 320 provides flawless knock travel and tuning while maximizing accuracy and consistency with a smooth draw cycle. As well you can shoot at 320 fps of arrow speed with a huge pound of draw weight of 70 lb.
However, it is true that in order to get the full 320 FPS, you need to set the maximum draw length of 31 inches and this is where the problem begins this 31″ draw length won’t fit most users. The average draw length for most users is 25 to 28 inches. Usually, 10 to 12 fps speed goes down for lowering each length of draw length, so this is why bows with 330-340 FPS speed are better.
On the other hand, its Axle to Axle length is 32″ which is neither short nor long. It is an average-length bow. As a result, while hunting you can move easily in tight spaces. The problem with longer ATA-length bows is that they cannot be maneuvered easily in tight spaces in the woods while hunting. For this reason, most bows are now made with shorter axle lengths to increase maneuverability.
But long axle-length bows are better for those who like a little better accuracy, and stability and shoot farther. This is why longer bows are used in target archery. Though this calculation is different for hunting, Games are typically targeted from an average of 40 yards away. So long axle-length bow is not required.
The Edge 320 is an average-length bow and not too long and not too short. so we can get the advantage of both long and short lengths bow. You are getting accuracy, stability, as well as more maneuverability which is very important while hunting in the blind, it’s true for all bows with the 32-inch ATA length though.
Many people think that the ability to shoot an arrow smoothly or not depends on the riser or the string. But actually, the smoothness of the bow depends mostly on the cam. it uses an advanced technology Symmetrical Cam system that keeps the bow always in tune and provides flawless perfect knock trouble that helps you to reach the utmost accuracy.
I consider this the best hunting compound bow under $500. Its forgiveness, accuracy, speed, consistency, and stability are unique in all aspects. Perfect accuracy with an 85% let-off feature, 70 pounds of draw weight, and 320 fps velocity output is enough to stop any animal.
PSE Bow Stinger MAX
Now I am going through the PSE option under 500 available. I am going to talk about PSE String MAX’s specs, features, and benefits. Now let’s get started with the main review.
PSE Stinger MAX comes with a classic PSE design with a better improvement that looks really well finished and comes with everything as it describes a ready-to-shoot bow package, meaning it will hand over to you equipped with every necessary accessory at under $500. With that package you are going to get pretty good everything entry-level accessories Including 5-pin sight, biscuit-style arrow rest, 5-arrow quiver, FX4 stabilizer, mongoose peep, and nocking loop. So you don’t have to buy anything with extra cost and take any hassle to attach them yourself. Actually, there is nothing different about Stinger MAX as every bow in this list comes as a ready-to-hunt package.
Now let’s talk about the other spec of the Stinger MAX.
It comes as a compact 30″ inch Axle to Axle length bow, that is great for a hunting bow. A short and compact bow is better for hunting due to its maneuverability, you can hunt with it from blind and tree stand with easy movability.
Also, it does has a 7″ inch brace height which is the distance between the back of the grip to the string. High brace height means a more forgiving bow and less torque in your hand. You will feel more comfortable because of its high brace height.
This 7-inch brace height bow has 312 fps IBO speed at a 30-inch draw length and 70-pound draw weight setting. Actually high brace height has its downfall too it reduces the arrow speed that’s why Stinger MAX only can reach 304 – 312 fps speed in full draw weight and draw length. More brace height is the better option for beginners though.
This particular bow goes from 21.5 draws to 30″ inch draw length and uses A wide rotating module that makes it easier to set your perfect draw length. and the draw weight wise this bow is available in a 28 to 70 pounds draw weight adjustment. So you have quite a good draw weight range to play around it. You can easily adjust the Draw weight by turning the limb bolt from the top and bottom of the riser.
The PSE Stinger MAX really does have a good draw cycle. You won’t feel anything like a big hump to get it at full draw. It is a pretty smooth bow with 80% let-off that will also provide you with more comfort to hold the draw weight into the valley.
Bear Cruzer G2
I don’t think there is any archer who doesn’t hear of Bear Archery a pioneering bow manufacturer. Everyone knows the Bear Archery company, they have been making bows since 1933.
And one of their most popular and best-selling bows under 500 is the Cruzer G2. The reason behind Cruzer G2’s popularity is how powerful, versatile, and accurate compound bow it is compared to price.
Although Bear Archery marketed the Cruzer G2 as for beginner’s bow, it has become popular with all levels of archers due to its versatility. Most hunters use it for hunting. And I also think there is no better bow to start hunting with. Also, it comes with almost all kinds of accessories, so there is no need to spend extra.
With an Axle-To-Axle length of 30 inches, this bow is considered compact. Short bows are perfect for hunting. Because they can easily maneuver in tight spaces that is why we see almost all brands make shorter axle-length bows because they know what works most for hunting. if you like a slightly longer axle-to-axle length bow, I would suggest looking at the Edge 320 or Bear Archery Paradox.
In a range of 12-30 inches of draw length. The Cruzer G2 can fire arrows at a speed of 315 feet per second at maximum Draw length and weight. It has a maximum 30 inches draw length so even though the Edge 320 can shoot arrows at 320 fps, it has a 31 inches draw length, so a few have a wingspan wide enough to handle this size draw length. So even at 315 fps, the Cruzer G2 is more than enough for most users.
In terms of IBO speed, nothing can beat the Bear Archery Paradox with its 330 fps speed in this price range. But, What I like about the Cruzer G2 is its cam. Its symmetrical cam prevents the string from swinging left and right, resulting in a perfectly vertical shot.
In many bows, the cam moves slightly from right to left causing the string to move from right to left. As a result, the arrow may be facing left or right rather than sitting in the center of the bow, thereby shooting horizontally. Because of this, we cannot use the full power of the bow.
But the Cruzer G2 uses two Bus Cables to keep the cam fixed in one place so the string cannot move and shooting can be done vertically. Which means more accuracy, power, and speed.
You can consider This bow for hunting, practice, or sporting. Its price is less than others bow on this list but its versatility, accuracy, and power are remarkable. So many hunters have been using it as their primary tool in hunting.
Diamond Infinite Edge Pro
No wonder this compound bow on my list is another product from Diamond Archery, the Infinite Edge Pro.
As I said earlier Diamond Archery makes remarkable bows. But it is very different from the Edge 320 and also cheaper in terms of price, so if you don’t want to take Edge 320 for some reason and if Cruzer G2 is also not your choice then you can look at the Infinite Edge Pro.
Like the Edge 320, the Infinite Edge Pro also comes with the synchronized Binary Cam System. This Binary Cam system of Diamond Archery is very effective, it provides flawless nock travel and tuning for which these bows can offer maximum accuracy and consistency. It also helps to provide a flawlessly smooth draw cycle. That is why I count it as the most accurate and popular cam in the market right now, thousands of positive reviews are enough to prove its effectiveness.
Both the Infinite Edge Pro and Edge 320 have the same maximum draw length of 31 inches, but the difference is that the Infinite Edge Pro draw length can be adjusted to a minimum of 13 inches. Actually, this kind of small draw length is a joke because even a 4 years old kid has more than a 13-inch draw length. So this kind of draw length is not functional you can think of it as a fun competition between those compound bows.
Unlike the Edge 320, Infinite Edge Pro is more lightweight and compact. Being lightweight it will be convenient to carry. And if you want to take a bow like a professional hunter but don’t break the bank, then you can buy Infinite Edge Pro. It has adjustable draw weights from 5 to 70 pounds. You can easily shift between draw weights as per your needs making it easy to use for adults to kids.
The Infinite Edge Pro has a maximum speed of 310 fps which is 20 fps less than the Edge 320. this bow is very durable and forgiving. Also, its adjustment range is good. My overall opinion is that this is a nice bow for the beginner hunter. Many are using this to start their archery career. So you can try it too.