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Bows are no longer seen as a primitive weapon. Today’s bow is a high technology weapon that can be used for sports or hunting. And the sight is one of its most essential components. It can help you view targets easily and clearly, ensuring you get accurate shots. The great advantage in the use of optical sights is that the target and the reticle are figuratively reproduced in a single plane, solving the problem of having to align rear sight. There is no doubt that a precision element, due to the quality of its components and the complexity of its manufacture, the more expensive it is, the better it will surely be. However, choosing a good sight for bow hunting goes beyond the final price.
With a pair of hunting sights, you can observe potential targets from a discreet distance or increase your visibility in low light conditions. The best bow sights must be sturdy, light, waterproof, and reliable. But other criteria such as the type, pins, number of pins, pin diameter, and hand orientation, must also be taken into account depending on the intended use. This is why you should check out our complete guide to choosing the best bow sights that best meet your expectations.
The Trophy Ridge Volt is a multiple pin bow sight with right and left adjustability. The pin diameters are .019 diameter. It has a rheostat light on it.
Sold for an under $50 price, this bow sight is incredibly inexpensive. It has aluminum etched in laser and very accurate windage. There is an elevation as well as pin adjustments. The device has a Ballistix coating with a soft touch feel that reduces vibration.
The fiber optic horizontal pins come with a pin guard. Sight acquisition is quicker, thanks to the green hood accent.
This device is sleek and versatile. It has offset installation holes for flexibility. The mount design is reversible and you can use it with just any bow. This can be either your left-hand bow or right-hand bow.
The sight will be compatible with bows such as the Parker Wildfire, the Bear Cruzer Bow, and a Samack Sage.
What we liked: The device works great and is easy to use for sighting. You will have no problem using it for shooting targets and hunting. The construction looks solid and is well put together. It’s arguably one of the best bow sights under 100 available on the market.
What could be better: Mounting the sight is a bit difficult. Sometimes you may need to take it apart to make it work.
This is also a multiple-pin horizontal bow sight with a pin diameter of .029 inches. The sight is adjustable from the left and right. It is noticeably lightweight in construction, thanks to the 6061-T6 aluminum. The TOPOINT 3-pin device comes with elevation and windage markings.
The sight has a solid mounting arm while the body of the sight itself is made of durable plastics.
Don’t expect this device to be useful under low light conditions or at nighttime. Also, the level is too small but is nice to have.
What we liked: We like the simple design of the sight. It is very light in weight and it is inexpensive. It’s one of the best-rated bow sights with high value for money.
What could be better: The build construction looks cheap. However, for an under $20 sight, you get what you pay for. The model is a nice sight but it doesn’t come with instructions. And also, the packaging could be better.
The Truglo model is made up of a single pin and is adjustable for both hand orientation. It has a pendulum knob up on top and a few strands of fiber optics. It also has LED and marks going across the back for your left-right adjustment.
The way this works is you sight it in at 20 yards. Once you sight it in 20 yards, you’re good up to 18 feet high. Whenever you draw and you angle down, the weight of the sight causes the pendulum to stay perfectly perpendicular to the ground. If you get too steep, you’re going to lose sight of your pin.
Even if you make a quick drop, it doesn’t swing erratically or anything like that. It stays stable and you can bring it straight back up any time.
When shooting, you can have it wide open and it’ll always be straight up and down. While using it for shooting, you’re good at 35 yards. The further out you go, the less it angles out until it’s straight up and down.
It’s a great sight that will save you from losing a lot of arrows. It will also save you from missing your target.
What we liked: We like the sight because you can lock it in place while shooting from the ground. It has a shooter ring that glows in the dark and a 1.8-inch aperture. This is the option to choose for those of us who have a hard time judging distance.
What could be better: Some buyers have mentioned that the package might come a bit damaged.
Number of pins: customizable for single-pin and multi-pin configurations or manual pin selection
Pins diameter: –
Hand orientation: right and left options available
Weight: 14.7 oz
Extra features: 1 year of battery life with 2 Lithium AAA batteries, full draw up to 100 yards on game or up to 300 yards on reflective targets, auto-ranging, silent single-button trigger, 160 x 68 pixels display resolution, -4° to +140°F
Being a digital sight, the technology involved in this device is enough to make geeks want to try it out. What sets the Xero apart from any other sight is the rangefinder built right in. There are a couple of other range-finding sights out right now but Garmin does theirs a little bit differently. And the thing we like most about the sight is that there is ZERO clutter in the scope itself.
Once you come to draw and range, all you see is a single LED light. Everything else is wide open so you can concentrate and look at it and get a clear view of the deer, the hog or whatever you’re hunting. And it offers a picture unlike any other. You can have all different arrow profiles set up at the push of a button. Choose the one you want.
The digital sight nudges something as simple as how long the bow vibrates after a shot. You can tell exactly how long the vibration lasts. It does not tell you how much it’s vibrating. You can put this on a bunch of different bows too and you can find the one that maybe you like the best to take in the field.
What we liked: This sight can handle 10 different arrow profiles so you can have a 350-grain arrow and you can have another one set up, maybe 450 grains, or a little bit higher for different broadhead weights and everything else.
What could be better: It is a little bit more complicated than a regular sight. But once you figure out exactly what you’re supposed to do, it becomes quite simple.
The folks at Trijicon are well known for their high-tech stuff. For the single pin compound bow sight, Trijicon made use of its standard fiber wrapping methods at work. They couple that with a piece of clear fiber that has polished sides on it.
The bow sight has an adjustable mount but it doesn’t make use of a battery. It includes a fiber optic pin that is field replaceable. Also, it includes a bright aiming tip that is triangular.
The onboard Accudial mount is also engineered to be used on any bow or arrow speed combination. It can be adjusted at increments of one yard.
The fiber grabs the light and illuminates the post. While the light is transferred through the piece of clear fiber, it reflects off the polished surfaces back to the user. And that’s what you see so you get a triangle look in there
You have all the precision in the world by just using the tip of the triangle. But you have the large surface area of the triangle to gather more light for those low-light hunting conditions.
Because it’s Trijicon, this is set up to work even if you don’t have any light hitting the fiber optics. It has a tritium lamp coupled to the fiber on the inside. This gives you that extra boost in those waning seconds.
The included Accudial mount is an adjustable and standard adjustable mount out there. It has an actual transmission in a mechanical transmission that allows you to adjust it for various bows and you will always be staring at a very defined laser etched number.
What we liked: We love the precision of the entire setup. You get the aiming point of a triangle with a very precise tip and you get the knowledge of every single yard.
What could be better: The cover used on the fiber optics looks a bit cheap and not durable. A few users report that it breaks easily.
The H4 is a multi-point viewfinder. Easily adjustable, it is equipped with React technology, allowing automatic adjustment of the last two pins.
It is very easy to adjust in just 3 steps. You first adjust your 20-yard pin (18 meters, it’s the top pin) by positioning the entire tunnel block, using the micro-adjustment tool. It is knobs-less (no key required) for the lateral and vertical.
Once your 20 yard/18 m pin is placed where it is needed, you step back 30 yards (27 meters) and then adjust the second pin (from the top), with the small micro-adjustment wheel.
Once these first two pins are set (20 and 30 yards), the other 2 pins (40 and 50 yards) are then automatically set!
This is because the Smart Pin Technology system automatically calculates and adjusts the pin gap, based on the pin gap of 20 and 30 yards.
Also, the Trophy Ridge React H4 sight is made of Ballistix CoPolymer material, which is lighter than aluminum but also resistant.
The plate has 3 pairs of screw location holes to fix it to the bow, which allows you to place it more or less forward to properly adjust it to your sight.
The fully micro-adjustable 4-pin horizontal viewfinder is ideal for arrow speeds between 195 and 330 fps.
It has a spirit level and a housing adjustment without a key. There’s a photophosphorescent circle around the tunnel to help center in sight in low light conditions. It has an LED with rheostat included.
The item weighs 264 grams (9.6 ounces) and includes screws.
What we liked: The Trophy Ridge React H4 sight is a multipin horizontal sight with the famous React technology. It allows the pins to be adjusted automatically.
What could be better: The tool isn’t threaded for the lens. You cannot use a 2 power Magnafire for example.
Extra features: Zero In adjustment dial, lighted center dot, micro-adjustable windage, toolless windage, and yardage lock, adjustable end of travel stop and 11 brightness setting, push-button brightness control, auto-off.
The Truglo Range Rover PRO is a power dot with a lighted center dot.
It has a bright green point and is adjustable in intensity and distance. The bright green dot comes with 11 intensity settings and works with a CR2032 battery which is included. There’s an adjustment wheel for very precise height adjustment. You can make a lateral micro-adjustment thanks to the precise click system.
The device has distance and lateral locks. Operating it is very fluid as it allows distance adjustment with one hand
The tunnel has an internal diameter of 1.8 inches. There is a photophosphorescent circle to help center in the sight.
The tunnel has a thread compatible with the magnifying lens. However, this is sold separately. It includes 40 pre-calibrated self-adhesive distance strips. There’s a plate machined by a CNC machine. The stopper system allows you to limit and customize the maximum distance.
Also, there are laser engraved graduation marks for the height and lateral adjustments. The bow sight is completely adjustable for a right or left-handed user.
It is supplied with a neoprene case to protect the scope.
The quiver can be mounted directly on the viewfinder plate, but a small offset plate is included. This allows the position to be changed and the angle of the bow quiver.
What we liked: The device comes with the Power-Dot technology with green light point and 11 light intensity settings.
What could be better: The device does not come with a magnification glass or optic. However, you can buy one separately. Just check its diameter carefully.
Hand orientation: right and left options available
Weight: 1.99 lbs
Extra features: up to 99 yards, rangefinder built-in, OLED display with 2 minute scan mode, 4 brightness settings, tool-free windage and elevation adjustment, 2nd- and 3rd-axis adjustment, removable red dot laser included, CR2 battery included.
The IQ Bowsight Define has an OLED screen with an indication of distance and battery level. It has a scan mode of 2 minutes and an external trigger button (can be attached to the handle). It has a separate redpoint laser for adjustments and 5 pins (with 0.019 inches diameter).
The device has an accuracy of up to about 80 meters. Unlike older range finders, the screen is incorporated directly into the viewfinder for a better view.
Machined from 6061 aluminum, the viewfinder has 5 pins with a very bright optical fiber, a precise bubble level, and the possibility of adjusting the axes (second and third axis) without a key.
This viewfinder comes equipped with an integrated rangefinder. It features a unique system that displays your shooting distance at the body level of the sight.
It is activated by pressing a sensor that is fixed at the grip. The OLED screen has a very legible blue inscription of the shooting distance as well as the battery level.
This device works with CR2 type batteries.
The rangefinder has an accuracy of +/- 1 yard and measures directly with angle compensation. The model requires a built-in laser adjustment to adjust the sight. It is available in the 5 pin version only.
You can make a micrometric adjustment of the side and height. There are numerous settings to adjust the sight height to the level of the bow stage. You can adjust fiber brightness intensity using an integrated rheostat.
What we liked: The device comes with a built-in rangefinder and built-in light with four brightness settings. It is very easy to read and set up.
What could be better: The rangefinder does not range the target properly.
The AccuTouch from Axcel is one of the best bow sights on the market. The nice thing about the Accu-Click system of this device is that it comes with a carbon bar which is extremely durable and it’s extremely consistent. You lose a lot of vibrations due to the carbon bar so it helps you out in the long run because you’re not having the oscillation like in standard sights.
You can set it up for a three-pin, five-pin, or a single pin. The needle for the elevation adjustments is a very fine needle. So, you can lock it in. You can fine-tune where you want it. If you’re setting it on a one-yard increment, if you’re at 62 yards, you can fine-tune into that.
It comes with complete sight tape so you can set everything up for your space or speeds to your slower speeds.
There’s the little red bar that locks your windage adjustments in. So, you will not be able to move it. What you’re going to have to do is slide it over and that will allow you to move it. But then when you slide it back, it locks it back in. That’s nice when you’re hunting and stalking through the brush. You don’t have to worry about anything moving on you and you can keep everything consistent.
The AccuTouch has a long wire of fibers for all your pins. It runs through the housing and the pins are for a 10,000 spin.
It has a three or five-pin housing, you’re going to be able to adjust your pins to set them for your yardages.
What we liked: You can give the pin brightness just by sliding over and you can watch the pins dim down. This is nice for shooting in different lighting conditions. If it’s bright out and the target is dark or it’s in a shadow, you don’t want to extremely block the bright pin because it’s going to cover up almost the whole target. So, being able to dial that down and dim the pin brightness is extremely nice.
What could be better: The device is very heavy and expensive when compared to others in the review.
The Spot Hogg’s top hunting/course sight is derived from the famous Fast Eddie. It has a dovetail stage for easy mounting and dismounting of the sight for transport. Special attention has been given to the design of the mounting bar to maximize strength while minimizing weight.
The Fast Eddie sight is very easy to remove and put back on while retaining its very specifics. The version with an adjustment bar also allows you to vary the distance from your sight, to find the perfect distance to superimpose it on your sight.
The device offers a micro-adjustment of the 2nd and 3rd axes. It has precise lateral and vertical
adjustments without tools. It has a very quiet and precise operation, without noise or vibration. It comes with pre-printed distance labels according to the speed.
The special feature of the Fast Eddie Double Pin is that it has a monopin with two fiber optic points inside (hence the name double pin). This can come in handy in the heat of the moment. Thanks to the double-pointer, you can therefore shoot further if necessary without having to adjust the adjustment wheel, by having two preset distances. This very innovative sight, therefore, offers a hybrid system between a real monopin and a double pin, without the bulk of two separate pins.
The Fast Eddie also has a removable triple ring to easily encircle the outline of the viewfinder with your sight, even in low light. Also, this triple ring facilitates the strapping in the sight, even with different sight diameters, and in different light conditions: your sight will be perfectly “wedged” on your sight circle, whether in the early morning or full sun.
There’s a simple ring included for people preferring a standard ring. The triple ring and single ring are easily interchangeable (they screw and unscrew).
What we liked: There is a large and ergonomic distance adjustment wheel. The device is made of a very solid 6061 aluminum construction. The dovetail is light and has a quick release.
What could be better: The device does not come with mounting screws. Also, the customer support service could be better.
The CBE Engage is also one of the best archery bow sights around. It is a hybrid and solid three-pin sight. It is a very simple multi-pin sight, with micrometric adjustments for height and lateral adjustment.
This sight has an aluminum body, which gives it good strength, allowing a lighter total weight. The adjustment of the pins is done individually.
The device is relatively compact and has a lightweight design. Micrometric adjustments are blocked by “tool-less” screws, that is to say, clampable and loosened without tools.
This is going to be a good choice for bowhunters in particular but also 3D archers as well. This is a 5 pin sight. There is also a 3 pin and a single pin version of this sight. So, it’s a dovetail mount. The bracket will come off and is going to mount to your bow. It’s going to give you four different positions for you to slide it in and out to get it set where you want it on your bow.
There’s a lot of features on this sight. You have two screws that allow the adjustments of the bracket’s mounting position. You can easily raise this if you need some down movements in the scope housing. This can be lowered down. However, if you need more of some up movement, you have different positions in which you can mount the bar. Therefore, you can have the sight housing just where you need it. With this sight, you can adjust its 2nd and 3rd axis.
What we liked: The sight has lots of possible adjustments. There are many places you can fit it in perfectly during setup. The pins are very bright, adjustable, and smooth.
What could be better: The construction is not so durable. Also, it doesn’t have engraved elevation marks.
This is a new generation vertical multipine viewfinder. The sight has 5 vertical pins in line. The Peak is in Ballistix co-polymer. This material is as strong as aluminum but 25% lighter. It reduces vibrations linked to shooting. You can make side adjustment without tools. The phosphorescent photo circle is visible even in very low light.
The cool thing about this sight is it’s got a ballistics copolymer system. It is 25% lighter than aluminum, which is great. It has a windage tune system on it and requires no tools. It’s just a dial. You have windage and elevation adjustments. It is suitable for low-light conditions because it has a fiber-optic ring in front. It also has a switch where you turn on a little light to boost that. If you’re hunting in low light and you have a big buck, doe, or elk coming in, and you can’t see your pins, this is great for that.
It has five pins and a pretty nice setup. Also, it comes with two screws just so you can get it on the bow. It helps to have a nice shot.
What we liked: We like the fact that there is a version for the left-handed and there is also a version for the right-handed. However, each comes with a slight price difference. Still, this is one of the best new bow sights around.
What could be better: Overall, it’s a great sight. However, the one downside is that it didn’t come with any instructions. Also, it’s a little bit hard to sight especially when you have 30, 40, 50, 60, 70 pins, or five pins.
Hand orientation: right and left options available
Weight: 8.8 oz
Extra features: 100% machined aluminum, Mathews Harmonic Damper, mechanical rheostat, micro windage adjustment system, sports a single sight pin with 5 feet of fiber optic A.R.M.O.R. sight pin technology, sight level, and DS tapes, yardage dial, sight tape ranges from 20 to 80 yards, sight in at 20 and 60 yards, 52 color-coded tapes included, made in the USA
The HHA Optimizer Ultra 5519 hunting sight is a top of the range model that combines all the options of the HHA Optimizer 5419 sights series. But it has a smaller tunnel than the XL version. The ultra-light model has the distance adjustment wheel and a medium diameter sighting tunnel (1 5/8 “or 41 mm).
It has a large length of optical fiber of 0.019″ (5 feet or 152.5 cm of coiled fiber length). It’s equipped with a rheostat system to modulate the brightness of the pine (by covering more or less the optical fiber as needed).
There’s the RDS Technology onboard. This is a very ingenious system patented by HHA. The RDS (initials for Range-Dial-Shoot) estimates the distance and adjusts the wheel-tire! It allows you to adjust your sight by calibrating only 2 distances (20 yards and 60 yards, or possibly 20 yards and 40 yards). Thanks to a mathematical and therefore infallible process, by calibrating your settings at 20 yards and 60 yards, you will only have to stick the corresponding pre-calibrated tape and all your distances will already be calibrated up to 80 yards.
The housing diameter is 1 5/8 inches (4.1 cm), ideal for the course, allowing the use of a smaller sight. The optical fiber (0.019”) is very long: 5 feet, or about 152.5 cm, to transmit maximum brightness. And, indeed, HHA sights are extremely bright!
Also, there’s the ARMOR Pin Technology. The rod of the ultra-strong machined aluminum pin encapsulates and protects the optical fiber on all terrains.
Once mounted on your bow, all the adjustments (lateral and vertical) are done without a key or tools which is very practical.
The mechanical (or manual) rheostat is a cover system that is screwed or unscrewed to cover or partially uncover the optical fiber, to modulate the visibility of the pine as needed, from low light to very bright. This very ingenious and practical mechanical rheostat is patented by HHA.
What we liked: The DS-5519 tunnel is compatible with the optional lens kit (magnifying lens), which is sold separately. This viewfinder is compatible with the optional HHA Burst Light diode. Also, there’s the integrated Mathews Harmonic Damper to reduce noise and vibration. This is one of the best single pin bow sights your money can get.
What could be better: To shoot the 80 yard mark your bow needs to be able to use this setting.
Extra features: over 120 pre-marked yardage tapes, adjustable rheostat brightness control, 2nd and 3rd axis luminescent level, yardage pointer, dampened end-of-travel stops, up to 700 hours on a battery with a 4-hour idle automatic auto-off
The Apex Gear Covert PRO is also one of the best hunting bow sights on the market. It’s a hybrid sight that combines the advantages of a red dot and an adjustable single point. The Covert PRO is built on the same frame and plate as the standard Apex Gear Covert (adjustable mono-pin), but instead of a classic pin with optical fiber, the Covert PRO has a real bright green dot (LED) at adjustable intensity, Power-DOT type.
The scope lens (non-magnifying) has a crossed reticle, with an illuminated central aiming point, for better precision at all distances.
The LED green dot has 11 intensity settings to adapt to all ambient light conditions. It includes a CR2032 battery (ready to use). It has an ultra-smooth one-hand adjustment with circular adjustments to ensure verticality. It can make micro-adjustment of the lateral and vertical. The tunnel has an internal diameter of 1.8 inches. The tunnel/scope accepts a 1.87″ lens (sold separately).
It has a photophosphorescent circle to facilitate the centering of the viewfinder in the visor. It includes over 60 self-adhesive strips of pre-calibrated distances. There’s the location of the distance strip towards the rear, to simplify field adjustment.
Compact and light, it’s 275 grams set and includes screws. It’s a precision machined aluminum construction with stainless steel screws.
The frame includes a stroke stopper, shock absorber. There’s an adjustable pointer/cursor and it is reversible for right and left-handed users. There’s a bow quiver that can be mounted directly on the plate, without the discomfort of use. It includes neoprene sight protection.
What we liked: To summarize, the Apex Gear Covert PRO is an adjustable red dot sight that is easy and quick to install.
What could be better: The lens is not made of glass. It is made of plastic (polycarbonate).
Extra features: suitable for all compound bows, tubeless design, 33mm reflex lens aperture, adjustable 4 different sized red dots, Automatic Brightness Control, 8 manual brightness level adjustment, parallax-free and unlimited eye-relief, waterproof and shockproof, low power consumption, 1 CR2 battery included
The Messer Optics is a digital and red dot bow sight that comes with a CR2 battery. The Accu-Shot has no magnification and you can hold it at any angle and any distance from the eye. Regardless of the distance and the angle, the images of the reticle and target are not distorted. The reticle will also not move.
The Accu-Shot lets you use the device while your eyes are open. This gives you the shooter or hunter a wide field of view as well as a normal perception of depth. This, alongside the lens which is unmagnified, makes acquiring your targets very fast when you compare it with other standard types of telescopic sights and scopes.
The device is designed to be tubeless. It has a 33 millimeter reflect lens aperture. This provides a wider field of view. There are four different adjustable multi-reticle red dots installed. The device has a control setting that adjusts the brightness automatically. Manually, you have 8 brightness level adjustability.
The device is very lightweight, shockproof, and waterproof. And also, it consumes low power.
What we liked: We like the fact you have four different adjustable red dots installed. The device also has a control setting that easily adjusts the brightness automatically. When you decide to go manual, you have 8 brightness level setting. It’s one of the best compound bow sights.
What could be better: Only for compound bows.
Things to Сonsider
We’ve seen the best bow sights for hunting but it’s not enough to follow a recommendation. You have to know what you’re buying and what makes it the ideal choice for your activity. In this section, we will give you all the information you need when you’ve decided to take the next step of adding a sight to your bow accessories. Keep reading!
Features to consider when choosing a bow sight
What makes a bow sight considered one of the best among its peers? Well, many features can make a sight qualify for this ranking, as we have seen in the best bow sights reviews. From the types (fixed pin/multi-pin, movable pin/single pin, pendulum, digital, power dot), to the pins (vertical or horizontal), to the number of pins, the pins diameter, hand orientation, and weight, there are many criteria which you can watch out for. In this subsection, we will see some features to consider in a bow sight.
In the first place let us consider the different types of bow sights
The Open Ring
With the open ring, you will be able to align your target. So, you will be able to see it right in the center of the ring. It is very cheap, good, and reliable. This type of vision works very well for short-range shooting and is not the best option for a long range. When the target is too far away, you won’t be able to properly focus your target through the open ring. Although certain open rings address this problem.
Generally, open ring types are great for starting archers. This is because their aiming process is quite natural. Hence, they do not distract you from hitting the target.
The pin bow sight
The only downside about this type is that it can be difficult to find if you have wooden bows. However, if what you have is a metal one, it is easy to get a pin bow sight for it. However, if it is made of wood, you may need to drill holes and put inserts.
As we’ve seen in the reviews, we have two-pin types. These include the multiple pin sights and the single pin sights. So, what makes them different?
The sights with the single pin such as Axcel AccuTouch Plus Slider are good if you need to shoot at static targets. Meanwhile, multiple pin sights such as the CBE Engage Hybrid Bow Sight and the Trophy Ridge Peak are the best if you need to shoot at a moving target (while hunting, for instance). This is because the multiple pins allow you to select pins which are perfect for specific distances where your targets are.
It can attract attention because it is a very good but expensive model. Apart from the price, the skill required to use it is also considerable. While not all sights will fit all types of bow, some features apply to every type of vision.
Note that these allow both vertical and drag adjustments. You can even combine them with various types of recurve bow sights for the most impressive accuracy.
Fixed Pin sight for compound bow
Fixed pin sights are very popular. They are very easy to set and when you use them appropriately they can be very accurate. While it’s a simple design of multi-colored pegs set in place, it will take a bit of work to adjust the pegs to fit.
Most fixed-pin viewers allow you to add several pins, giving you the ability to set multiple distances. But the more pins you have, the more difficult to manipulate they are.
Depending on the way you position the pins, you need to learn ways you can compensate for everyone in between the shots. Using the pins to guide you, you can adjust the shot in a way that it falls within the pins when you line up the shots for those that are off the field.
Moveable bow pin sight
These types of sights are different from fixed pins because it has a single movable pin. This allows the users to adjust the pin for any distance for any shot. Generally, the distance of the shot can be marked on sliding scales that are previously set by the archer. So you’ll need to adjust it to the appropriate distance for each shot.
The downside to this type of vision is that to get a clean shot you need to adjust the pin as needed. This may however cause you some problems especially when the target you need to shoot is constantly moving. Meanwhile, movable sights can be the best for 3D shooting or competitions.
Pendulum Sights for Bow
Pendulum sights are types that offer a new dimension to standard and mobile pin sights. This sight generally has a mounting pin on the pendulum within a sight bracket. As the angle of the bow descends, the pendulum swings out of the mount allowing a more accurate shot.
The pendulum sight must be carefully calibrated to achieve proper accuracy, requiring some knowledge of arrow speed that the novice hunter may be unaware of. Some drawbacks relating to these types are the loss of precision for distance shooting and when shooting from a ground level.
For what use?
Depending on their use, we can divide the sights into models for hunting, for competition, and of the tactical or military type.
The most common crosshairs for the first shooting mode are usually quite wide (type 4 or similar), which helps to fix the target quickly and shoot it by surprise, since it may be moving. In general, they do not have reference scales on the regulation turrets, which makes it more difficult to achieve the correct aim.
For the competition, these sights have a crosshair, “Dot CPC” and ‘Target Dot’ reticles. Generally, the modality requires variable magnifications with correction devices for height and drift and some type of scale on the turrets.
They are reserved for elite shooters, and the most widely used crosshairs are the one-thousandth Mil-Dot type, Duplex combined with Mil-Dot, and others with specifications for fast and compensated shots without using correction devices.
Of course, for the three modalities, there is an unimaginable range of combinations, and that here we mention only the most frequent to start.
The hand orientation of a bow sight is important for usability or ease of operation. Sight can be left-handed adjustable or right-handed adjustable. However, the best models should be right and left adjustable. This particularity can be found in models such as the Apex Gear AG2301GB. However, some models can be sold in different versions. That is, both hand operations are available. You can choose either the left-handed or the right-handed one. Examples of these are the CBE Engage Hybrid Bow Sight and the HHA Optimizer Lite DS-5519.
Like all optical equipment, each model on the market has a specific limit when it comes to the shooting distance you can view. Most shooters set their distances within 10 to 25-yard distances. However, some models like the Truglo Pendulum Sight TG700 can let you view a shot of up to 35 yards. However, the HHA Optimizer Lite DS-5519 has a sight tape that ranges from 20 to 80 yards. It can also sight in anywhere from 20 and 60 yards.
Availability of pins and number of pins
Sights come with and without pins. With pins, as earlier explained, the model can have single or multiple pins. The sights with the single pin are good if you need to shoot at targets that are not moving. Meanwhile, multiple pin sights are the best if you need to shoot at a moving target. This is because the multiple pins allow you to select pins that are perfect for specific distances where your targets are.
Many shooters or hunters choose multiple pin models because they contain different colors. So the hunter can decide to change the pins when one is not giving the perfect shot you want.
Multiple pins are great for their adjustability. This ensures that hunters can set pins as much as possible.
The availability of bubble levels is also an important criterion. This is because sights are mainly used for hunting and hunting activities take place in various types of weather, many times in cold weather. With the presence of a bubble levels feature, you don’t need to worry about the bow sight not functioning properly. The bubble levels have an alcohol content that prevents the sight from getting frozen during a hunting expedition in the winter season.
Some sight lights have LED lights that provide illumination during use. These types help you to see items such as pins on your sight especially when you are hunting in the dark. These models usually come with batteries (CR2 types), like in the Messer Optics Red Dot Sight. You may also check to see whether these batteries come with the package.
Sights with light are not recommendable if you will use the bow at the game park or where you have animals. This is because the lighting may scare the animals away. So, choose according to the place and time you’re going to hunt.
Weight comes in two aspects. It improves the robustness of the device. But when a sight is too heavy, say above 15 ounces, transporting it may be a problem. Also, the ease of handling is affected.
The weight of the sight is dependent on the type of material used. However, while looking for a light sight, don’t make the mistake of choosing poor quality materials that are not durable. Plastic sights may be light but not durable. However, aluminum offers the best of both worlds. It offers lightness and durability. Made of steel, you may have a rugged model that can last for years, but you will have to endure the weight.
Robustness and tightness
Bow sight must be usable whatever the weather conditions and in all types of environments. Particularly robust models with a high-performance anti-shock coating should therefore be preferred.
Because of bad weather, accidental fall into water, dust, hunting bows must have optimal waterproofing. To have this, there are two types of sealing:
Weatherproof or fogproof: This model is resistant to rain but is not waterproof. A fall in water will therefore cause water to enter this type.
Waterproof: When a model is said to be waterproof, it is perfectly sealed. More compact and robust, roof prism binoculars better meet this important criterion. The majority of optical tools are pressurized with a neutral gas, nitrogen, or argon, thus guaranteeing a seal against both humidity and dust
The sight, regardless of its use, must meet a series of basic requirements, which will be more or less important depending on the utility that we will give it. In general, we must take into account the extra features that we detail below:
Resistance to recoil: the sight is an optical instrument with mechanical attachments and in some cases electronic, which have a certain fragility. There are inexpensive models for small calibers (.22 LR and similar), which for obvious reasons are not recommended for placing in large-caliber weapons, as they can suffer damage due to strong recoil.
Reticle: Your choice is very important, and in the next few lines we will see why.
Brightness: if the weapon will be used during the day, it is not very important, but if you are going to hunt in precarious light conditions, the equipment must be as bright as possible. Some even come with brightness settings that are manually or automatically adjustable.
The lens and treatments: they must be of the best quality since they are the determinants of sharpness in vision. Those of greater size and good treatment increase definition and luminosity. Pressurizing with nitrogen prevents condensation of interior moisture.
Field of vision: some models can be magnified. Depending on the distance and the size of the target, more or fewer magnifications will be necessary. The higher the magnification of the device, the smaller the field of view. For standard use, 2x magnification is sufficient.
There are various types of sights with various price ranges. There are low budget models such as the Trophy Ridge Volt 5 which is sold for an under $50 price. However, some models can be multiple times more expensive. So we advise that you only buy according to your budget. The features you need should guide or determine the price range you shoot for.
Tips on how to install and use your bow sight correctly
When you need more precision to aim at your target, the best solution is to integrate a sight into your bow. This little accessory has a ruler and is ideal for fine-tuning your aim. To install and use it, follow the methods and steps below:
Prepare the bow and the shooting range
Set aside a few days in advance. Ideally, you should spread the sight setting over several sessions. Exhaustion will affect your power and accuracy. Also, your form is more than likely to change. Spreading the scope setting over several days will give you better overall accuracy.
Install the sight on the bow. Follow the instructions that come with the sight to install it correctly. Most sights can be installed to the bow body and can be secured with screws. Most bows already have drilled holes to attach the sight. Do not tighten the screws too much. Or you can get the bow damaged. The crosshairs of the staff must be vertically aligned with the bowstring. The bow sight must be at the correct angle to the bow. Having installed the sight, then let it rest overnight. You may need to tighten the screws a bit more after that rest.
Adjust all crosshairs to the midpoint. This way, you can get more space for adjusting in the directions you need. You may need a hex wrench, available from hardware stores, to adjust the crosshairs.
Set the target and mark the distances. Ideally, you should mark after every 10 yards (9m) away from your target, at minimum, up to 36 meters (40 yards). If possible, use a rangefinder to dial accurately. You can find rangefinders at hunting or outdoor stores. Use a sturdy target that can handle quite a few arrows, because adjusting the sight of a bow may take time and repetitive processes.
Adjust your sight
Set your front sight (first) to 20 yards (18 m). Move to a close distance to your target. This can be up to the 9-meter (10-yard) mark. Then stand in a way so that your body can be perpendicular to your target. Then, with an arrow, draw the bow. Aim through the scope at the top crosshair. Now, shoot at the target with your arrow. Repeat this with a few more arrows.
Check if the arrows get close to the mark. If the arrows went above where the front sight indicated, move the scope box a little higher on the bow.
Repeat the step above until your arrow stops firing above the top crosshair.
Back up until you reach 20 yards (18 m). Repeat the aiming process, raising the scope box if necessary. Once the arrow stops hitting above your top pin, then you can adjust if the arrows go too far right or left. You just need to move the scope to the respective side.
Don’t worry about getting perfect precision because this point of view will most certainly change.
Set your crosshairs (the second) to 27 m (30 yards). Once you judge that your front sight is adequately accurate, return to the 30-yard mark in your field. Now, aim using the 2nd crosshairs and shoot some arrows at your target. Make the same adjustments you did when aiming from 20 yards. Take your time to adjust your crosshairs to 30 yards (27 m) as precisely as possible, because this is not going to change. This crosshair will be your anchor.
Back up until you reach 36 m (40 yards). Aim for the crosshairs (the third) for 36m (40 yards) in the scope and shoot several arrows at the target. When making adjustments, this time move just the crosshairs instead of the entire box. You are no longer going to move left or right with the sight box; now you should focus on making the arrow go directly where the crosshairs are pointing within 40 yards (36 m).
The distance between the crosshairs for 27 and 36 m (30 and 40 yards) will be greater than the distance between the crosshairs for 18 and 27 m (20 and 30 yards). If you wish to readjust the location of the sight to the right and left, go back to the 27m marks in the field and make any necessary adjustments there.
Recheck your shots within 20 yards. Once you’ve adjusted both your 30-yard (27-meter) and 40-yard (36-meter) crosshairs, return to the 20-yard mark and fire again. This time, make adjustments directly on the crosshair rather than the entire crosshair.
Keep going back and adjust the scope for any additional crosshairs. Depending on your scope, you may have additional crosshairs for 45m (50 yards), 54m (60 yards), and more. Step back a few yards away from your target. Then repeat the last steps, by moving the crosshair to make some adjustments.
Make all adjustments to the scope in fine magnifications. A large crosshair adjustment is likely to mis-square the sight, which will slow down the process and make it frustrating.
Make sure the bow and string are already worn. If you adjust the sight on a new bow or a new string, the process will lose effectiveness over time, like the bow and/or string wears out and yields under tension.
Go to an archery range and request that they give you a space to adjust your sight. You can usually find these courses in some clubs.
You can make your shooting range. If you’re going to do this, do it outdoors in an area where you can’t hurt anyone or damage something with stray arrows.
A model such as the Trophy Ridge Volt is suitable for training for beginners. It is suitable either outdoors or in indoor target archery practicing. A recurve bow sight, rather than a compound bow sight, is suitable for training. The Trophy Ridge model is an entry-level model that costs less than other compound bow sights. The compound models have a lot of moving parts and are complex to make.
Not completely necessary. If you are going to be practicing in different terrains, then you should choose a pendulum model such as the Truglo Pendulum Sight TG700. The pendulum types are perfect for bowhunters who love to explore varying terrains.
Not all legislations allow you to use bow sights, including other hunting equipment. For example, some legislations don’t allow the use of lighted or electronic bow sights. So, it’s better to make your research before stepping out for practice.
Archery is popular with hunters and those who like to practice their skills at a shooting range. Like any other weapon, it is not easy to hit a target with a bow. You cannot point the weapon in any direction your target is and then expect it to be hit. The process which involves adjusting the sight on the bow increases your chances of getting the target hit. Using a sight on a bow lets you the archer find a way to compensate for the drop in the gravity of your arrow through the turbulence and distance the shooting procedure produces at the point of aiming. Now that we’ve seen 15 of the best on the market, we’ve trimmed them down in our final verdict below.
Our overall best model and the Editor’s Choice is the Trophy Ridge Volt. This is a multiple pin bow sight with right and left adjustability. The pins are .019 diameters. The device has a rheostat light on it. Sold for an under $50 price, this bow sight is incredibly inexpensive.
The TOPOINT ARCHERY 3 Pin Bow Sight is our Best Value model. It’s a multiple-pin horizontal bow sight with a pin diameter of .029 inches. The sight is adjustable from the left and right. It is noticeably lightweight in construction, thanks to the 6061-T6 aluminum.
Choose our Budget Pick, the Truglo Pendulum Sight TG700, if you want one of the best bow sights for a budget price. The Truglo model is made up of a single pin and is adjustable for both hand orientation. It has a pendulum knob up on top and a few strands of fiber optics. It also has the LED and has marks going across the back for your left-right adjustment.