Bowtech BT-X 28 Review
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Compound bow technology has come a long way over the years getting faster, more efficient, higher let offs, and overall better performance than years ago. The last couple years, cam technology has continued to make minor improvements over the previous models, but there has not been anything Earth shattering in regards to the technology used for imporvements. For 2016, Bowtech combines Powershift technology, the Micro Sync dial, and a rotating cam module system to allow shooters complete control of how their bow feels, tunes, and shoots. The Powershift technology allows shooters to experience three distinct draw feels and performances. Draw weight is offered in 40 to 80-pounds through 4 separate limb configurations. The two Kryptec finish options are really great looking, and are nice additional options to the traditional Realtree patterns for shooters still wanting a traditional camo hunting bow. Overall, the BT-X is a great shooting bow, for shooters that like to do some tinkering on their own rigs. The MSRP tag of $1099 may be a bit pricey for some shooters, although to be fair, the price is comparable to other big name manufacturers flagship models. The adjustability of the BTX-28 is outstanding, but it may be too much for those not interested in tweaking or making significant changes to how their bow feels. Overall, the BTX 28 brings some really nice, functional technology to what cams are able to do for shooters. With that being said, it is nice for shooters to have the ability to basically own three separate bows in one package.
FinishBowtech does a nice job having a little bit of everything in regards to the dipped patterns for the BTX 28 models. Shooters can pick between some stand by camouflage patterns with Mossy Oak Breakup Country or Realtree Xtra Green. These patterns have been both company's go to designs on archery equipment for a while and the familiar and reliable patterns look really nice paired with the rest of the Bowtech styling. For shooters wanting a more unique look, Bowtech also offers Kryptek Highlander and Kryptek Typhoon for some additional camo patterns. Bowtech also offers the bow finished in Blackops. Although there are only 5 options for finishes, there is a great looking choice for all shooters to appreciate.
RiserThe overall axel-to-axel measurement of the BTX28 is a compact 31-inches, which means the riser is pretty short as well. Riser engineers have always tried to produce the sturdiest riser possible while still eliminating the most amount of excess weight possible, and the Bowtech skeletal riser does just that. Although some may argue the 4.1 bare bow weight is a bit heavy for such a compact design, it never feels that way in had, and the added ounces really help make the bow hold well downrange, and dead in hand after the shot. The FLX guard is not a new cable flex system, but it is a nice design aimed at taking tension from the cable being drawn away from the riser. When the riser is torqued, the impact is seen in downrange accuracy. Any effort to eliminate this sort of tension applied to the riser is beneficial in the long run in regards to repeatable accuracy. The FLX system features a roller guard, and dampener to round out the technology for the cable guard.The help further deaden the bow, the BTX-28 riser also features two dampeners at the top and bottom of the riser as well as a standard rear mounting string stop system. All of these dampening devices along with the FLX guard help keep the bow absolutely quite after the arrow has been released down range.
GripThe Bowtech grip keeps with a little older fit and feel in regards to shape and size. Many bow companies have decided to go with smaller grips, but Bowtech has chosen to keep their same design from previous models, which has a little narrower neck but widens out towards the base of the palm. This gives shooters quite a bit of hand surface area on the bow grip. Although most shooters will feel comfortable with this type of grip, it may take some shooters getting used to if they are coming from a narrower grip design from a different manufacturer. The grip is a wooden side plated grip, which is easily removable if shooters want to add an aftermarket custom grip or side plates for a more personal look and feel.
LimbsThe Carbon Core Limbs are designed to store the most amount of energy without putting undue stress on the limbs at known problem areas. Shooters have the ability to choose the highly stressed split limbs in maximum draw weights of 50, 60, 70, and 80-pounds. Each limb configuration is designed to go ten pounds lighter than the maximum listed draw weight, and the 40-pound draw weight range allows almost any shooter the ability to find what weight works best for them. The limbs are designed to allow several layers of material to be held together with a strong resin, wrapped around a carbon core. The idea behind starting with a stiff limb hope to gain the maximum draw weights desired without the need to bend the limb so much that it starts to negatively impact performance. The limbs are connected to the riser in several places, but also end up having a built in pivot point with the riser as well, again helping with the performance and consistency overall.
Eccentric SystemEverything about the cam system is adjustable, making the BTX-28 one of the most user-friendly adjustable cams when shooters are informed about what the cam system is capable of. The Overdrive Binary Cam system has a draw length range of 25.5-28-inches, which is changed by adjusting the rotating module system. At 28-inches, the bow is rated at a 333 feet per second IBO speed rating, which would factor out much quicker if the cams were able to reach the 30-inch draw required of the true IBO test.The Overdrive Binary cams are exact replicas of each other and when tuned well, they are in the same position with each other throughout the entire draw cycle. From a tuning perspective, that means the nock travel is nonexistent from a horizontal positioning perspective, and the efficiency of the cams are able to transfer more energy to the speed of the arrow. The cams also feature split buss cables allowing shooters to tune the top and bottom cam lean to what the shooter and their set up really need. This also allows for shooters to completely tune the vertical nock travel of the arrow as well.Perhaps the most written about technology on the BTX-28 models is the Powershift technology, which effectively creates three distinct performance model bows allowing shooters the ability to choose between any of the three options without impacting the tune of the bow. Changing the powershift disc will impact the performance and speed, but the bow will remain perfectly in tune just simply changing the disc to a different number setting. All of this can be done without the need for a bow press as well. Last but not least, is the Micro Sync Dial located on each cam. The idea behind this technology is to allow shooters some tuning capabilities without the need of a press. The dial features ten specific adjustment markings and should be used to pair up cam synchronization or easily correct any string stretch issues.
Draw Cycle/ShootabilityThere is really nothing to not like about the BTX-28 bow and its design. The cam system has three distinctly different draw force curves allowing shooters to choose what works best for them, and which setting they are most comfortable with. Shooters wanting the absolute most in performance have that option. Those wanting an easier draw force curve to manage can opt for that as well, and those wanting something in the middle will also find what they are looking for. Overall, the bow can really be three specific feeling bows all in one nice package. Shooters can choose to change during a hunting season, and update the feel based on weather or tree stand hunting ranges they anticipate seeing on any given day. It is important to know the speed between each of the three will change, so the arrow flight and impact will look differently, especially as the target gets farther away. However, the cams will remain in tune with each other, so that is one less thing to worry about.Each of the settings feel smooth, and transition nicely. The main difference between the three settings is the aggressiveness and how quickly the bow reaches peak draw weight. The back wall will feel similar between each of the three settings as well in regards to how firm it is. There will be a difference though in how much creep each setting will allow shooters to get away with before the string wants to creep forward and send the arrow downrange. With everything added to the cam system, many shooters anticipate a louder shot and even some rattling with the cam screws and moving parts. This is not the case, and the cam adjustments all seem to tighten down well and remain in place after usage. Overall, the BTX-28 is a great shooter, quite after the shot, and super customizable if shooters are willing to learn how to properly adjust everything the cams offer.
Usage ScenariosThe BTX-28 is a bow designed for hunting. It has a great cam system allowing shooters to fine tune specific broadheads and arrows, allows shooters to choose a desirable draw force curve for them, and has a compact design great for packing, treestands, or blind sitting. Although the accuracy of the BTX-28 will be ideal for any style of shooting, the overall length of the bow is typically not what many serious target or 3D shooters are interested in.
Comparisons Bowtech BTX-28 vs BTX-31
|Bow||Bowtech BT-X 28||Bowtech BT-X 31|
|Brace Height||6 "||6.25 "|
|AtA Length||31 "||31 "|
|Draw Length||25.5 " - 28 "||27 " - 31 "|
|Draw Weight||40 lbs - 80 lbs||40 lbs - 70 lbs|
|IBO Speed||333 fps||350 fps|
|Weight||4.1 lbs||4.2 lbs|
|Where to buy|
Best prices online
|compare more bows|
For most shooters, these two models will have the shooters that match their draw length offerings. Longer draw shooters will be forced to go with the Bowtech BT-X 31, and shorter draw shooters will need to choose the 28. For those shooters with a draw length between 27-28 inches, there is an option to go with either model. It would be advantageous for shooters in this scenario to shoot the settings and setup they are thinking about using and compare each bow to see which one performs best. For most shooters, using the longer draw lengths on the cam will be the best option, but it would be a great idea to give both a try and see which one feels and performs the best.