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Education / Training Are Included Crossbow Optics Best Used for Paper Weights? 

Are Included Crossbow Optics Best Used for Paper Weights? 

crossbow setup with scope
4X32 Fixed Power Crossbow Scope

Most Crossbows come with an included optic like the CenterPoint Sniper Elite 385 Compound Crossbow, maybe the included optic, the Centerpoint 4X32, will serve the shooter well, maybe not, how do you know? Let me ask you a few questions.

  • What type of Archer are you? A backyard fun target shooter? Competitive Shooter? Or  an ethical bow hunter, (It would be nice if all bow hunters were)?
  • Does your budget or your spouse dictate your archery budget? 
  • Will you be shooting in low light situations? 
  • Are you confident in your capability of running distances?
  • Are you an Archer who requires top of the line, best of the best and money isn’t an issue?

Just Having Fun

The necessary equipment for a backyard fun target shooter is not extensive nor expensive, unless you want it to be. You and your friends, you’ve got some right? Whether you do or not, you or y’all can have a blast sending some arrows into fun, yet appropriate targets (I had to add “appropriate” for those of you that may run with the word fun disregarding common sense) even from the most attainable crossbows for any budget like the PSE Viper SS, with its front post sight and adjustable rear sight because after all, it’s just about fun. No paper weight here. 

Competitive Shooting

Are you a competition shooter? it seems that the best always wins right? I would say that is right, but does the best mean the most expensive?

One of the top brands for competitive crossbow shooting is the Excalibur Brand like the Assassin 400 TD, this one comes with the Excalibur Tact 100 illuminated red or green reticle scope. Since competitive crossbow shooting is generally offhand, one of the advantages to this optic is its lightweight. That may be a perfect match with no necessity to upgrade. 

Some competitive shooters probably have a secret sauce and may be willing to share the recipe, it may not require top of the line optics and gear. If I may make a suggestion,  if you are looking to get into that side of the sport, do some research and seek answers from seasoned competitors. If you’ve been a seasoned competitor, don’t be a jerk, share the sport because another archer needs help. Unless, of course, you’re concerned they’ll shoot better than you. 

Bow Hunter 

There are at least two types of bow hunters, (I did say at least). One who has a limited budget, because they have a limited budget or the spouse has limited their budget, and enjoys the opportunity to provide sustenance for themselves or their family. In that case you will want the most bow and optic for your buck, (Ha “bow” for your “buck” that was pretty good). 

Since hunting only happens when the sun is staring down at you from the center of the sky, uh, yeah right!! Not the case at all, most successful harvests in my neck of the woods are either early morning or late evening when the sun is just showing up or on its way out, that means there’s the necessity of good visibility in low light conditions. 

Can you harvest your game with an included fixed four power, possibly illuminated reticle, basic optic? What do you think? Well duh! Of course you can and that’s great news for those with a limited budget, no matter the reason. Though if the optic doesn’t come with illuminated reticles, I would consider an upgrade because it does help in low light scenarios.

An important skill when shooting and hunting is to know the distance of your target. If you are not confident with your judgment there are range finders available to assist you. Get one!

Most Crossbow Optics

Most included crossbow optics have a fixed magnification, are equipped with illuminated reticles, show 20, 30 and 40 yard cross reticles and a rear focus ring. 

What are some added features on other optics?

  • Adjustable magnification
  • Aim points from fifty up to 100 yards. 
  • A speed dial to match the optic to the velocity production of the crossbow.
  • A built in laser range finder that adjusts the aim point for you.

Top of the Line All the Time

Oracle X Crossbow with Range Finding Scope
Oracle X Crossbow Range Finding Scope

Some Archers have deep pockets and endless funds or maybe just living the plastic debt dream? If so this may be an option for you, the Ten Point Nitro 505 Oracle X Crossbow package which includes the Oracle X Crossbow range finding scope. Even though it is included with the crossbow it better not be a paperweight.

Conclusion; to each their own! Some archers are perfectly capable of accomplishing their goals with the basic optics included, tell me, why does that bother you? Don’t look down on one because their scope doesn’t digitally find the range and adjust the point of aim for that perfect kill shot. Hey you, with the basic optic, live by the same rules. Don’t despise the archers with deep pockets! There’s room for all archers at the same range! 

Your paper weight may be someone else’s only option!

author avatar
The Bow Bully
The Bow Bully discusses a variety of archery topics and offers tips, advice and the occasional nudge to make you a better bowhunter. With years of experience, and an attitude to match, you'll find the Bully has something to offer both beginners and seasoned hunters.

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