10 New-for-2020 Compound Bows

This year’s lineup of compound bows is filled with models loaded with customization archers shouldn’t ignore.

10 New-for-2020 Compound Bows

When the rifle world creates a stellar model, that model typically isn’t discontinued the next year. The bow world, however, is different. Each year, typically starting in October, the stick-and-string masses begin to ask: What’s next? It’s become the norm. While the argument over whether this norm is good or bad fluctuates depending on what circle of archers you’re chatting with, I will simply note that constant pressure to perform has pushed bow makers to levels of greatness I don’t think anyone thought was possible.

After I shot many of 2020’s flagship models, a plethora of thoughts jumped to the forefront of my mind. Of course, balance, durability, smoothness, speed and a quiet shot flashed like the lights on the Vegas strip, but another theme emerged as well. The more I shot and the more I tinkered, the more I realized the emphasis bow manufacturers placed on customization this year. This bow lineup features rigs designed to accept a face-mounted rest or the addition of a bow rope, tune with an Allen wrench, or achieve a wide range of let-off options and adjustable draw-weight and draw-length ranges bow toters will surely appreciate.


Bear Status EKO

A bow designed with customization in mind, Bear’s Status EKO ($1,000) allows let-off to be set in four different (75, 80, 85 and 90%) positions, making the bow great for bowhunting as well as 3-D and target archery. Align Lock Technology works in concert with the bow sight to make aligning second- and third axis all the easier, and the ShockWaves limb-dampening device adds a serious touch of stealth.

This 33-inch axle-to-axle rig has a weight of 4.3 pounds and hits speeds up to 344 fps. Draw weights options are 45 to 60 pounds and 55 to 70 pounds, and the bow ships with a VersaGrip and a NaroGrip. Color options are numerous, and the bow is draw-length adjustable between 26 and 30 inches without the need of a bow press. www.beararchery.com

Bowtech Revolt & Revolt X

A pair of masterpieces from the minds at Bowtech, the Revolt and Revolt X ($1,099) were created with a Deadlock Cam System. This system allows the archer to achieve a maximum tune using only an Allen wrench. Tune and Lock screws are labeled on the cams, making the system a breeze to operate. Deadlock Pockets marry perfectly with the Deadlock Cams to make the entire bow a single functioning unit. Both bows ship with the low-profile Clutch Grip, but the Clutch Control Grip is available for purchase if a customer is in the market for a grip that sports a ¼-inch raised heel.

The Revolt (above) measures 30 inches axle-to-axle, has a 7¼-inch brace height and hits speeds up to 335 fps. Specs on the Revolt X are 33 inches axle-to-axle, 6½-inch brace height and a speed rating of 340 fps. Both rigs are offered in draw weights of 50, 60 and 70 pounds and have a draw-length range of 26 to 31 inches.



Elite Ember

Measuring 31 inches between the axles and sporting a 6¼-inch brace height, Elite’s Ember ($500 bow only) boasts a draw-weight range between 10 and 60 pounds and is draw-length adjustable from 15 to 29 inches without the need of a bow press. This means the Ember will fit shooters of all ages, and this two-cam bow ensures shooters get a firm back wall even when set at low draw weights. This is made possible through a limb stop on the Ember cam.

Capable of speeds up to 310 fps, this split-limb bow comes complete with Elite’s new Vibex Dampening Blocks and Winner’s Choice Strings. A ready-to-hunt package is also available for $600.



Gearhead Disrupter 24

Gearhead had been dropping the jaws of archers for years. Aside from the fact that Gearhead bows shoot incredibly well, bowhunters are blown away by their dimensions and look.

Enter the new Disrupter 24 ($749-769). With redesigned, wider Zero Gap limb pockets and draw-length specific cams in lengths of 25, 26, 27, 28 and 29 inches, this racy rig measures a mere 24.625 inches axle-to-axle, hits a speed rating of 330 fps and has a weight rating of 4 pounds. Gearhead’s “Pick a Grip” system gives archers six different grip options to choose from, and the 24 comes with a ST-2 Stabilizer mount and can convert from right- to left-hand or vice versa.



Hoyt Alpha Series

Offered in carbon and aluminum riser designs, the specs of the Carbon RX-4 Alpha ($1699) and Axius Alpha ($1,199) mirror one another, minus the weight, of course. The Carbon RX-4 (below) has a mass weight of just 3.9 pounds, while the Axius Alpha weighs in at 4.3 pounds. Both rigs measure a maneuverable 29½ inches between the axles (Hoyt’s shortest to date) and sport a brace height of 61⁄8 inches.

Equipped with a refined version of the now three-generation ZT Cam, the ZTR promises a smooth draw, firm back wall and a rock-solid anchor. Another hat-tipper of the Alpha Series is the new Integrate Mounting System. Removing the need of the Berger hole for rest mounting, the Integrate System places a pair of slits into the face of the riser, which accepts the clamps of QAD’s Integrate MX drop-away rest. Of course, proven Shock Pods and StealthShot make the bows scream Hoyt, and both technologies greatly reduce noise and vibration. Color offerings are too many to list. www.hoyt.com

Mathews VXR 28 & 31.5

A true dynamic duo, the VXR 28 and 31.5 ($1,199) from Mathews blend speed, smoothness and stealth into a ready-for-any-hunt platform bowhunters are sure to cheer. Both rigs feature a six-bridge riser that was specifically engineered to boost strength and reduce weight.

The new platform is said by Mathews to enhance cam efficiencies and the tried-and-true hushing effects of 3D damping. A must-add accessory, the all-new Silent Connect System kit (SCS) fits between the limbs and requires just four screws to secure the SCS arms between the limb pockets. With the SCS in place, bowhunters can quickly and quietly attach Mathews’ bow rope and bow sling. The VXR 31.5 tips the scale at 4.66 pounds, measures 31.5 inches between the axles and is capable of speeds up to 343 fps. The 28-inch axle-to-axle VXR 28 (above) has a fighting weight of 4.44 pounds and spits arrows up to 344 fps. Both bows are fitted with a 6-inch brace height and come in draw weight options of 60, 65, 70 and 75 pounds. Color options are many. www.mathewsinc.com


Obsession Lawless 4T

Sure to be held in high regard by the speed crowd is the 356 fps Obsession Lawless 4T ($1,000). Fitted with Obsession’s OB Adjustable 4-Track Cam System, the bow is noted by Obsession to be a breeze to tune, and rotating modules allow for no-bow-press-needed draw-length adjustments.

With a mass weight of 4.1 pounds, this 33.25-inch axle-to-axle bow features a new rear stabilizer mount and one-piece limb-pocket construction sure to improve alignment and lead to increased shot-to-shot consistency. A visit to Obsession’s website allows customers to design the Lawless 4T the way they want it in terms of peak draw weight, riser color, limb color, string color and cam color.



Prime Black Series

When it comes to bow offerings from Prime, great things come in fours. Giving shooters 31-, 33-, 35- and 39-inch axle-to-axle offerings is the new-for-2020 Black Series ($1,099).

While specs on these four vertical wonders vary slightly by model, the big story is the Roto Cam System. This innovative system, a first for Prime, allows the user to adjust draw length via a self-contained rotating module. No press is needed, and the modules can be moved in half-inch increments. Let-off can also be adjusted with the Roto System between 65 and 90%, making the Black Series one of the most adjustable, headache-free platforms on the market. When it comes to riser design, few do it better than Prime. Branding the riser on the Black Series to be its strongest to date, this durable platform features an accuracy-enhancing center balanced grip position and engineered to reduce-pin-float Centergy Technology. The Swerve, which adds stiffness to the riser while synching the top and bottom half, is also back in action for 2020.




For 2020, PSE Archery and stick-and-string kingpin John Dudley joined forces to bring you the Nock on EVO NTN 33 and Nock on Carbon Air Stealth Mach 1. Weighing just 3.5 pounds, the Mach 1 is branded with a 61⁄8-inch brace height and hits speeds up to 324 fps. It measures is 321⁄8 inches axle to axle. The laid-back limbs along with a redesigned grip area provide the shooter with increased comfort and stability. The Mach 1 is available in draw weights of 50, 60, 65 and 70 pounds and is fitted the PSE’s smooth shooting Evolve Cam.

The EVO NTN 33 (above) measures 33 inches between the axles; this aluminum-riser bow also comes with a number of Nock On-inspired technologies like the T. Rest Mount, Precise Lock Cable Guard, Optimized Fall Away Riser Shelf, Direct Drive Rest Cord Connector and integrated Riser Ready Quickstand. The EVO promises a dead-in-hand feel and is offered in peak draw weights of 50, 60, 65, 70 and 80 pounds.



Xpediton MX-15

One of the fastest vertical bows of 2020, the MX-15 ($1,099) sends arrows at speeds up to 362 fps. Best of all, according to Xpedition, archers don’t have to sacrifice smoothness or accuracy.

The 4.2-pound, 5-inch brace height MX-15 was designed with a caged riser to provide increased stability and aid in noise and vibration control. The bow is also fitted with a new limb-pocket system that is being heralded for its ability to ensure perfect alignment through the power stroke of the bow to boost performance and maximize overall shootability. Available in draw weights of 40, 50, 60, 65 and 70 pounds, the MX-15 is draw-length adjustable in half-inch increments between 25 and 30 inches. No press is required. www.xpeditionarchery.com


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