You’re looking for a crossbow, but you’d prefer to keep your budget relatively lean, say, less than $400. You’d also prefer a high-quality crossbow at that price. What kinds of options do you have?
Our preferred crossbow for under $400 is the Killer Instinct Burner 415. This crossbow promises to fire at a rate of 415 feet per second and includes a lifetime warranty. We also like the following crossbows at the same price point:
- Barnett Explorer XP Crossbow
- PSE ARCHERY Fang HD
- CenterPoint Sniper 370
- BearX Intense Ready to Shoot Crossbow
Ahead, we’ll go in-depth on the features of the Killer Instinct Burner 415 as well as the 4 other crossbows we recommended. With our feature comparisons and pros and cons, you’ll easily be able to decide which crossbow is right for you by the time you’re done reading!
Our 5 Favorite Crossbows for Under $400
Top Pick: Killer Instinct Burner 415
Our favorite of the 5 crossbows on the list is undoubtedly the Killer Instinct Burner 415. For $340, this bow is just what you’re looking for to stay on budget.
If you’re buying your first crossbow, this is the one we’d recommend. This beginner-friendly crossbow boasts a Pro Package that includes everything you need to get started. You get a rail lube stick, field tips, three HYPR Lite bolts at 370 grain, a three-bolt quiver, string suppressors, a rope cocker, and the LUMIX IR-W 4×32 scope.
The Killer Instinct Burner 415 features a moon nock and Realtree Edge camo. Its power stroke is 14.5 inches, its draw weight is 220 pounds, and its kinetic energy is 141 feet pounds. This great Killer Instinct crossbow can shoot at a blistering speed of 415 feet per second. You’ll love how smoothly and quickly the arrows fly!
For greater precision, Killer Instinct includes their KillerTech trigger, which weighs 3.5 pounds. The trigger is supposed to promote greater accuracy so you can feel like a pro archer as you learn the ins and outs of shooting with a bow and arrow. The Micro-Lite aluminum barrel has been enhanced for the Burner 415, which also improves your firing precision.
Customize the fit of the Burner 415 with an X-Lock that adjusts as you need it. The buttstock with its AR-inspired design has six different positions, also lending you more customization options.
The dimensions of the Burner 414 are as follows: it’s 34.5 to 37 inches long with a width of 18.75 inches when uncocked and a width of 14.75 inches when cocked. The crossbow is 6.7 pounds.
- The Killer Instinct Burner 414 comes in two colors, gray or camo.
- The customization options for the Burner 414 let you set it in different ways depending on how you want to fire your crossbow today.
- Killer Instinct promises a limited lifetime warranty on non-wearable standard parts to whoever the registered owner is.
- You may need to upgrade the factory bolts to protect the limbs of this crossbow, which necessitates extra time and expense.
Barnett Explorer XP Crossbow
Coming in second is the Barnett Explorer XP Crossbow from the Barnett Archery Store. This brand has a renowned history of producing hunting crossbows for more than 50 years.
The Explorer is pretty much ready to use the moment you open it, just one bolt and your done. Its divided foregrip and stock make holding this crossbow feel natural. Besides the bow itself, 2 20″ carbon arrows, red/green illuminated red dot sight, a quiver, rope cocking device, and lubrication xax.
The draw weight of the Barnett Explorerl is 650 pounds, and you can shoot at 370 feet per second. That’s not quite as good as the Killer Instinct Burner 415, but it’s not bad either. The cable and string system is synthetic for durability. Barnett’s high-energy wheels as part of their quad limb assembly also promote efficiency.
The Barnett Explorer crossbow weighs 6 pounds. It’s 34.5 inches wide by 37 inches long with an arrow length of 20 inches. It features a power stroke of 12 inches.
- The Barnett Explorer is a great hunting crossbow.
- Barnett includes what they call a premium red dot sight that should make acquiring and aiming at targets a much more accurate experience.
- This US-produced crossbow comes with a limited warranty that’s good for five years.
- Barnett suggests waxing your strings per every 10 shots and keeping the strings in a climate-controlled environment for best results.
- Some users have said the Barnett Explorer is prone to breakage.
PSE Archery Fang HD
Squeaking by at just under $400 is PSE Archery’s Fang HD. The PSE company was founded in 1970, so it’s a well-known name in archery.
When you buy the Fang HD, you get an entire crossbow package, including a cocking rope, rail lube, dual string stops, string silencers, limb dampers, a foot stirrup, an adjustable buttstock, three 22-inch bullet-pointed carbon bolts, an auto-safety and anti-dry fire trigger, a five-bolt quiver, and an HDV 425 1.5 to 5×32 illuminated reticle scope with variable zoom.
Phew! It’s no wonder this crossbow is almost $400. The Fang HD promises arrow firing at 405 frames per second with 134 feet pounds of energy and a draw weight of 205 pounds. If you need to decock this crossbow, you can do so without firing, which will make beginner archers especially grateful.
This 10-point crossbow includes an Anti-Dry Trigger System for fewer dry fires. The adjustable scope features reverse cam technology you’ll rely on for better aiming and firing accuracy as well as more speed and power.
The PSE Archery Fang HD weighs 7.3 pounds. Its strings are 37.2 inches, the cable is 19.7 inches, and the crossbow itself is 35.5 inches long. Axle-to-axle, the whole thing measures 18 inches. The crossbow’s power stroke is 14.5 inches.
- The high-quality scope included with the Fang HD justifies the higher price of this crossbow.
- You get so many bonus features that PSE Archery could have sold separately.
- If you love your PSE crossbow, you can join the PSE Nation free of charge, where you get free tours of their Tucson facility, emails and newsletters, and a discount of up to 10 percent when you visit a PSE Pro Shop.
- Some users have said the stock and prod don’t line up so you can’t load any bolts.
- The Fang HD can be a bit heavy.
CenterPoint Sniper Elite
We also recommend the CenterPoint Sniper Elite, which costs around $415. We know it’s not under $400, but it was so close not to include in our list. Like the PSE Fang HD, this crossbow is part of a package. Included in the box is a carrying sling for transportation, a rope cocker, 4x32mm scope, parallel quiver, and rail lube.
Suppressors within the Sniper Elite reduce vibrations and–just as importantly–keep your archery experience quiet. Of all the quiet crossbows on the market, the Sniper Elite is especially renowned. On top of that, you also get auto-safety and anti-dry fire mechanisms for keeping your shots on-target.
Fire at 385 feet per second, which is still a decent shooting range, especially if you’re new to archery and you don’t need too much power yet. The Sniper Elite’s shoot-through riser insures, precision cam system, and quad limbs boost your accuracy.
CenterPoint designed this to be beginner-friendly. You can adjust the pass-through foregrip and stock as well as shoulder your bow. Its aluminum framework was built for durability, so you don’t have to fret about this crossbow standing up to the rigors of day-to-day archery. It can handle things quite well.
The CenterPoint Sniper Elite has a power stroke of 14 inches and an axle-to-axle length of 14.75 inches when cocked. It weighs 11.9 pounds. The draw weight of the Sniper Elite is 185 pounds.
- The CenterPoint Sniper Elite has some great features.
- CenterPoint says the Sniper Elite is made for archers of all experience levels.
- We want to underscore the quiet operation of the Sniper Elite, as it’s one of the crossbow’s biggest selling points.
- Users have said the pull cord might stop working after a few uses.
- Others say the strings snap quickly.
BearX Intense Ready to Shoot Crossbow
Our last recommended crossbow for under $400 is the BearX Intense. This ready-to-shot crossbow for military, tactical, and sports archery includes lots of gear and accessories so you can practice firing with it right away. Those extras include string wax, a rail lube, a cocking rope, a four-arrow quiver, an illuminated scope, and three BearX TrueX arrows.
Don’t worry about errant arrows with the anti-dry fire mechanism. Arrows fly from the BearX Intense at 400 feet per second, which is pretty good for a crossbow that costs $350. The power stroke, which measures 12.7 inches, adds more muscle to every shot you make.
With the Weaver-based scope rail and its awesome illuminated scope, the Intense is a good crossbow for hunting too. It’s not super unwieldy either, measuring 14 inches wide when uncocked and 10 inches wide when you cock it.
- You can buy the BearX Intense in three camo patterns and colors.
- Assembly, while required, is quick and easy according to users.
- The quality and power of the BearX Intense make it one crossbow to seriously consider.
- To decock the BearX Intense, you have to shoot an arrow.
- You can’t add a cocking crank to this crossbow.
The 5 crossbows we reviewed today are all solid picks whether you’re buying your first crossbow or you want your next one to be lower-priced but high-quality. We most recommend the Killer Instinct Burner 415, as it has the best shooting power of the crossbows on this list. Your archery game will be way improved!
Now that you’ve decided what bow you may want to try out, don’t forget your other accessories.
Check out our top picks for archery gloves, peep sights, and rangefinders.
For a list of the best archery ranges in the country and near you, click the link.