Elite Option 6 Review

Elite Option 6

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Pros

  • Elites first attempt at split limbs
  • Roller guard system replaces the cable slide
  • Modular cam shoots up to 342 feet per second

Cons

  • Lots of competition for a 32-inch axel to axel bow
  • MSRP of $1199 is a big hike up from last year's Elite bows

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Editors' review

2017 brings a great deal of changes to the Elite flagship-hunting bow. Elite has been known for several things throughout their short tenure as producers of solidly built, and well-performing bows. The Outdoor Group producing the Elite brand has also been fairly stubborn in listening to what many shooters want with what seemed like a refusal to listen to what many shooters were demanding. All that has changed with Elite bringing split limbs, and a roller guard system on a solid performing bow featuring a 6-inch brace height and speeds up to 342 feet per second. For 2017, Elite seemed to listen to forum members and hard-core archery shooters putting something to the market many though was not an option from Elite. Elite has the Option 6 listed for every style of shooting, making it a decent all around shooter for those wanting to use the same rig all year. The resulting 32-inch axel-to-axel bow has a ton of competition given the specs, and now features a much higher MSRP tag of $1199. However, the bow itself is a great shooter, and something many folks will take to the woods with them this fall.

Finish

Elite keeps the Rhinodized coating on the Option 6. Some shooters have complained about this finish in the past and how well it holds up on the cam system. However, it does feel tough, and should withstand normal wear and tear. It looks really well done, and seems to cover all the hard to reach areas without blemishes. The Rhinodize colors include: Trendy Teal, Vette Yellow, Timberwolf Gray, Sunset Pink, Serious Pink, Purple Rain, Pine Green, Famous Pink, Crimson Red, Surge Red, Cobalt Blue, and Canyon Orange. For shooters wanting the Option 6 as a target or 3D bow, the colors are cool looking, and sure to draw attention. Those wanting more traditional color choices, shooters can opt for black, hardwoods brown, olive green, RealTree Xtra, Realtree Max-1, Realtree AP Snow, Kuiu Verde and Kuiu Vias. Elite really has something to match every shooters style and preference in regards to finish options.The limbs for this year are split, which means the simplistic limb graphics have changed a bit. Elite still keeps the simplistic look, but Option 6 is written on each limb along with the Elite name. The white and blue design stands out a bit, but is very well done as to not distract from the rest of the bow.

Riser

The Riser maintains its typical Elite design. If placed next to past Elite flagship bows from previous years, shooters would be able to lump the Option 6 in with other Elite models. Part of the reason is the dual bridge riser design, which adds some strength and rigidity to the riser in general. The engineers chose 7075 aircraft aluminum as the material of choice, which is fairly lightweight and strong compared to other types of aluminum. The overall weight of the bow gets a bit heavy tipping the scales at 4.3-pounds, but it does not feel like a heavy bow while being shot. The scale weight does not highlight how well balanced and sturdy the bow feels in the shooters hand or while holding on target. For 2017, the riser does get a roller guard to replace the older cable slide technology. This system is known as the Linear Tunable Roller (LTR). This system does not flex, but it does have a setscrew, and can be adjusted to specifically tune based on the vane width being used by each shooter. Those needing less clearance based on lower profile vanes can adjust the roller towards the arrow. Those demanding more vane clearance when using higher profile vanes can adjust the roller to be further away from the arrow. Unless shooters are going to be changing vanes regularly, or will be shooting a variety of vane configurations depending on the season, this tunable feature although well thought out may not have the impact engineers hoped. The roller system is a welcomed feature, but the tunability of the slide may have been better utilized as a flexing system instead. The string stop system remain in place, joining the riser just below the grip area and slightly above the bottom bridged area on the riser below the grip. This is aided with Limbsaver dampeners to keep the string from moving forward, and has more dampeners where the limb stop rod connects to the riser. The use of these materials, in addition to the split limb technology has resulted in a bow that has virtually zero hand shock or vibration. For stabilizer mounting locations, shooters have the standard forward mounting position available, and also have an added rear-mounting hole toward the bottom of the riser. These are in very popular locations for 3D and target shooters, and are greatly appreciated for shooters needing a bit more overall weight added.

Grip

The Elite grip has been a favorite for some shooters, and hated by others. With the grip being such a personal preference, Elite keeping the grip universal for so many years allowed shooters to get more used to how the old banana curved grip looked and felt in the hand. Shooters disappointed with previous Elite grips will be pleased to find out that is completely redesigned for the Option 6. Elite took advice and input from their target shooters to create a grip that is easier and perhaps more comfortable than previous years. The grip is a flat back grip, which is also different than previous years. There is a definite back on the grip, and it is a more repeatable grip than shooters had prior to 2017. The grip also tapers a bit to better fit in shooters hands. The grip at the top is thinner than the grip at the bottom, which makes sense when considering how the grips fit in the shooters hand. There are two side plates added to the grip area, but the majority of the grip shooters will feel is an integrated part of the riser design. This grip feels more like other 2017 offerings, but shooters truly in love with the older curved grip may need some adjustment time to figure out how the new Elite grip fits in their hand for the most accuracy.

Limbs

The Option 6 limbs are completely new for 2017 featuring split limbs for the first time in Elite's history. The multilayer laminate split limbs are offered in 50, 60, 65, 70, and 80-pounds maximum draw weight limbs and adjust by ten-pounds for each configuration. The split limbs are more pre-stressed than Elite's standard solid limb bows, and give the bow a little more attitude. Of course Limbsaver dampening products are integrated into the split limbs with a simple split limb dampener added from the factory. The split limbs allow for a larger cam system to be used when compared to solid limb designs as well. There is more room for a larger cam when engineers use a split limb system, and Elite has beefed up the OP cam a bit this year as well. Shooters that love the solid Elite back wall will also be pleased to know the inside of the top and bottom cams also feature a limb stop pad to allow for the very well known Elite back wall. The graphics on the limbs are tastefully done, and the limb configurations available will be perfect for the majority of shooters on the market for a pretty quick shooting bow. The limb pockets are different than previous Elite bows as well. The pockets are now designed to keep split limbs in place instead of the previous solid limb configurations. The pockets are not over engineered, and blend in to the rest of the bow design. Time will tell how well they hold up and perform, but with Elite making the leap of faith to a new design, it is safe to say they spent a lot of resources on research and development to make the new design perform as well as possible.

Eccentric System

The Op cam system is a modular system, which can adjust from 26-30-inches in half-inch increments. The modules need to be purchased from a dealer, but are fairly inexpensive, and often exchanged for free. Shooters will be properly fit upon leaving the shop with the correct draw, but if a different length is needed for any reason, the module is easy to change out and keeps the overall weight of the cam a bit less than rotating modules, which ultimately means faster speeds. The OP cam system is pretty quick shooting IBO speeds up to 342 feet per second. This speed rating is quick, and the cams smooth draw makes the added speed almost feel effortless. The limb stop system can be tweaked and adjusted for each draw length module and has a let-off from 85% down to the 70's, depending on where it is set. Past Elite shooters have fallen in love with the high let-offs, and amazingly solid back wall, which remains unchanged for 2017. The cams have the Rhinodize coating on them, which some shooters have not been fans of based on chipping and durability concerns. Upon first glance, this does not seem like it would be an issue, but forum members and reviews online have evidence of chipping occurring. It is possible these issues are isolated, and of course they are covered under warranty if it does happen, but shooters should inquire with their chosen dealers about the issues to see if they have experienced any issues worth being concerned about.

Draw Cycle/Shootability

The OP cam system is pretty big compared to other Elite cams from the past. With the use of the split limbs, the cam can be larger in diameter without it impacting how it connects to the limbs. For a bow that shoots 342 feet per second, the Option 6 draws pretty smoothly. It is stiffer when compared to more recent Elite bows, but it is still smooth, and can be set up with the large dwell zone Elite shooters are crazy about. The back wall is as solid as the previous limb stop bows, with the OP cam stopping against the limb stop pad instead of the limb itself as in past years. With the adjustable let-off, shooters can opt for a few different feels pulling into the back wall, but the wall is still solid. The lighter the let-off percentage is set, the less creep shooters will be able to utilize at the back end of the draw. Elite lovers generally cannot be happy enough with the back wall feel and need to push the string forward to let the arrow down. Shooters not wanting that feeling can adjust a bit of the long dwell zone feel and limit the amount the bow can creep by playing with the limb stop system. The overall weight of the bow is pretty heavy on the scales at 4.3-pounds, but it does not feel too heavy at full draw. The bow balances well in the shooters had, and feels very sturdy holding downrange. The added weight also helps with dampening the sound and the vibrations caused after the arrow is released as well. The Option 6 holds well on target, feels great after the shot, and has a great deal of forgiveness despite the shorter 6-inch brace height featured on the bow. The speeds are quick, and the nice draw cycle is easy to get used to for those wanting the pull benefits of a faster shooting bow.

Usage Scenarios

Elite created the Option 6, and offers finish options to meet the needs of any shooter on the market for a new bow. The Option 6 is a great do it all bow for shooters more comfortable with a relatively short 32-inch axel-to-axel bow. The impressive speeds, overall weight, and easy to shoot cam system makes the Option 6 a contender for all styles of shooting. With that being said, the Option 6 will more than likely be most popular used as a hunting bow or 3D bow.

The Elite Hunt Guarantee

It was not long ago Elite offered a fully transferrable warranty to its shooters. The 2017 limited lifetime warranty is only available to the original owner of the bow. However, with that comes the Elite hunt guarantee. This promise is unlike anything in the archery world. Elite knows shooters demanding a high end bow are going to be using it on trips of a lifetime to hunt animals some may only get an opportunity at once in their life. For that reason, Elite created the Elite Hunt Guarantee. If anything happens to a shooters bow while on a hunt, the simply contact Elite and a new bow will be shipped to them the next day so they can continue their hunt of a lifetime with the smallest interruption possible. This is wonderful piece of mind for shooters on a hunt they may never get an opportunity to do again, because their bow company of choice wants them to be as successful as possible.

Elite Option 6 vs. Elite Option 7

Bow Elite Option 6 Elite Option 7
Version 2017 2017
Picture Elite Option 6 Elite Option 7
Brace Height 6 " 7 "
AtA Length 32 " 32 "
Draw Length 26 " - 30 " 27 " - 31 "
Draw Weight 40 lbs - 80 lbs 40 lbs - 80 lbs
IBO Speed 302 fps - 342 fps 302 fps - 342 fps
Weight 4.3 lbs 4.3 lbs
Let-Off
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For those wanting to take advantage of the Elite Option series, Elite has created two models to choose from. The Option 6 is the faster bow of the two with the 6-inch brace height versus the Elite Option 7's seven-inch brace height. With the two bows being identical other than brace height and the speed rating, the 7 will more than likely be a little more forgiving than the 6. However, the 6-inch model will increase 10 feet per second with its speed rating while maintaining the exact draw force curve and feel. With a similar feel, both bows are going to have a great deal of support. How the bow will be used, and the type of arrow shot should play a large role in which bows shooters choose. From a shootability perspective, both choices are great ones.

Summary

The look and feel of the Option 6 is most definitely Elite. However, the new adjustable roller guard system, split limbs, and faster 342 feet per second speeds really challenge what people have gotten used to from Elite in the past. The engineers did a nice job keeping the Option 6 a very shootable bow, and the increased performance is greatly appreciated for shooters wanting something a little quicker than the standard Elite offerings in the past. The price tag of $1199 is perhaps too high for an aluminum riser bow, and that may turn people away from Elite without even shooting the bow against the competition. In addition to the high price tag, there is a ton of competition when looking at a 32-inch axel-to-axel hunting bow shooting over 340 feet per second. The Option 6 is a great shooting bow, but it has a lot of competition, and many of those models are less expensive as well. Elite has marketed the Option 6 as an all around bow, good for all styles of archery, and that may help some shooters justify the price hike. For someone wanting a high end performance bow, the Option 6 is a great choice, but it has stiff competition as well.




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