Hoyt Carbon Element Review

Hoyt Carbon Element

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out of 7 user reviews
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  • Extremely quiet bow with virtually no hand shock or vibration
  • Very lightweight yet well balanced and strong
  • Has a smooth draw cycle and a very firm back wall
  • Easily adjustable draw length - modules can be changed without using a bow press
  • One of the best shooting hunting bows in 2011


  • Not the cheapest bow out there


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Editors' review

The new 2011 Carbon Element is the second bow engineered with Hoyt's hollow tube carbon technology. This is exactly the same technology used by Hoyt on the ever popular Carbon Matrix (Plus).


Equipped with a carbon riser, the new Carbon Element is a very lightweight yet perfectly balanced bow with a fantastic performance. The hollow carbon tube riser is very different to typical aluminum risers in terms of both look and feel. This high-tech design delivers great performance without vibration and noise. In addition, even a bare Carbon Element is dead in the hand as noted by many experts and shooters. With this design, the overall bow mass weight is only 3.6 lbs meaning you can put the extra weight anywhere you like to achieve better balance.

Silent riser shelf

In 2011 Hoyt engineers came up with the Silent Riser Shelf designed to isolate the arrow from contacting the riser and make the bow quieter. This design helps to reduce the noise significantly. According to the Hoyt design team this engineering solution also helps to reduce the noise created by drop away rests. The silent riser shelf is just one of the components of the impressive silencing package the Carbon Element is equipped with.


The Carbon Element comes with a one piece narrow handle. This factory grip is pretty torqueless, as confirmed by many archers who shot this bow. While the 180 Pro Fit grip is considered by many archers to be very comfortable and functional, some shooters prefer putting side plates on it. Obviously, this is a matter of personal preference. The good news is you can remove the stock grip and replace it with a different type if you don't like it for some reason.


The new XTS Pro Arc limbs are built utilizing the same advanced five layer lamination technology that has been successfully used for manufacturing a number of great quality Hoyt rigs in the past. Experts agree the XTS Arc limbs are among the most reliable and strongest limbs on the market. Not only this design is very reliable, but it also provides for high performance by storing a lot of energy, increasing speeds, and reducing vibration. Overall, this system helps to make the Carbon Element a great shooting bow capable of generating impressive speeds with virtually no hand shock or vibration.

Eccentric system

The Carbon Element is equipped with the new Hoyt's Fuel Cam system capable of generating ATA speeds of up to 323 fps (Hoyt decided to stick to ATA speeds in 2011). While some shooters say the speeds are not very impressive, those guys who are not crazy about fast bows say the bow is fast enough for hunting. While the new Fuel cam system feels very similar to the last year's XTR & 1/2 performance system, it has been improved slightly: the new cam is outfitted with a larger draw stop peg helping to deliver a more solid back wall.The Fuel cam system on the Carbon Element comes with 3 different cams covering a wide draw length range of 24.5 to 30 inches as shown in the below table. Each cam comes with a set of interchangeable modules used for adjusting the draw length in half inch increments without using a bow press. The let-off on the Fuel cam is approximately 75%.Draw length ranges for Hoyt Carbon Element Fuel cams
Cam Draw lengths
Fuel cam #1 24.5" - 26"
Fuel cam #2 26" - 28"
Fuel cam #3 28" - 30"

Draw cycle / Shootability

The majority of experts and shooters describe the Carbon Element as a very smooth, perfectly balanced, and extremely quiet bow with a very firm back wall. We were overwhelmed with the amount of highly positive feedback about this bow indicating its shootability characteristics are awesome from draw to release. Without a doubt, the Carbon Element is one of the best shooting bows in 2011.


The carbon riser technology has been proven to be very effective in terms of delivering quiet shots without vibration. That is why the Carbon Element is reported to be as quiet as the Carbon Matrix that was released in 2010. Those archers who had a chance to shot the new Carbon Element confirm it has virtually no hand shock or kick whatsoever. They also note this rig is extremely quiet on the shot. The carbon riser technology, along with a high quality design make the Carbon Element one of the quietest bows out there as acknowledged by many experts and shooters.Let's have a closer look at the silencing package the bow comes with. While both carbon riser and XTS ARC Pro limbs significantly reduce noise and vibration, the bow comes with a few extra components that help to make this bow completely quiet:
  • enhanced string stop is made from a softer rubber and helps to reduce noise while being much more durable.
  • new silent riser shelf isolates the arrow and the riser and further contributes to eliminating the unwanted noise.
  • offset stabilizer mount makes the Carbon Element a perfectly balanced bow by mounting a stabilizer to the other side of the riser to offset the weight of the accessories.
Almost all archers who shot the Carbon Element are very impressed with how silent this rig is. They say the bow is dead in the hand and it's hard to feel any hand shock or vibration even on a bare bow.

More affordable than Hoyt Matrix

Interestingly, while the Carbon Element is designed with the same technologies as the ever popular Hoyt Carbon Matrix, it is not as expensive. The MSRP for the former is approximately $400 less. This will make it much more affordable for many shooters who are not happy with the price tag of the Carbon Matrix.

Hoyt Carbon Element vs. Hoyt Carbon Matrix (Plus)

BowHoyt Carbon ElementHoyt Carbon Matrix
Version 2013 G32013 (G3 cam)
PictureHoyt Carbon ElementHoyt Carbon Matrix
Brace Height6.75 "6.75 "
AtA Length31.5 "35 "
Draw Length24.5 " - 30 "25.5 " - 31 "
Draw Weight30 lbs - 80 lbs30 lbs - 80 lbs
IBO Speed332 fps327 fps
Weight3.6 lbs3.8 lbs
Let-Off75% 75%
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While both bows look very similar there are some important differences to note. To begin with, while the Carbon Matrix can be used for both hunting and 3D shooting, the Carbon Element is better suited for hunting due to its shorter axle to axle length (32" compared to 35" on the Matrix) and lighter mass weight. Also, the Carbon Matrix is a bit slower than the Element (318 fps vs. 323 fps) and is more expensive.One reason why you could choose the Hoyt Carbon Matrix over the Element is the draw length range. Designed with very similar high quality technologies, the Carbon Matrix is a longer AtA bow (35") and has a better draw range for longer shooters (2011 Carbon Matrix Plus comes with an option for long draw length shooters - it's adjustable up to 32.5"). On the other hand, if you are looking for a top quality hunting rig that has it all and is not super expensive, the Carbon Element will be a great choice.

Hoyt Carbon Element vs. CRX 32, Alphamax 32, and Maxxis 31

BowHoyt Carbon ElementHoyt CRX 32Hoyt Maxxis 31Hoyt Alphamax 32
Version 2013 G320122011 (XTR Cam)2010 (XTR Cam)
PictureHoyt Carbon ElementHoyt CRX 32Hoyt Maxxis 31Hoyt Alphamax 32
Brace Height6.75 "7 "7 "7 "
AtA Length31.5 "32 "31 "32 "
Draw Length24.5 " - 30 "24.5 " - 30 "26 " - 30 "26 " - 30 "
Draw Weight30 lbs - 80 lbs40 lbs - 80 lbs40 lbs - 80 lbs40 lbs - 80 lbs
IBO Speed332 fps323 fps323 fps321 fps
Weight3.6 lbs3.95 lbs3.9 lbs3.9 lbs
Let-Off75% 75% 75% 75%
Where to buy
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If you are on budget and want to get a great hunting rig, consider other Hoyt hunting bows such as Hoyt CRX 32, Hoyt Maxxis 31, or Hoyt Alphamax 32. While none of these bows comes with the carbon riser technology, they are all very good shooters and have similar specs. On the other hand, if money is not an issue, getting the Element is a great idea because it's a better shooting bow with a higher quality design.


To conclude, the Carbon Element is a very quiet bow with great shootability characteristics. While it could be a bit faster, its innovative riser design along with a very smooth draw cycle and efficient silencing package make it a great shooting bow. Very lightweight, forgiving, and perfectly balanced, even a bare Carbon Element delivers very quiet shots with virtually no hand shock or vibration whatsoever. While it still has a higher price tag, the Carbon Element is much more affordable than the ever popular and very similar Carbon Matrix. Built with very innovative, effective, and proven technologies, the Carbon Element is admittedly one of the best shooting hunting bows in 2011.

User Reviews

  • 7 reviews
  • ( out of 7 reviews for all versions)
The best shooting bow I ever shot....

Version: 2011 Hoyt Carbon Element


Pros: No hand shock or vibration. _

Cons: Price

Full review:

I shot this bow back to back with the Z7 and the Mathews Z7 extreme. I thought both Z's were nice but the hour was quieter and had less vibration. I also loved the idea of the rubber shelf. The offset stabilizer is great also. The hoyt seemed to have a better wall at full draw. And being 3.6 .lbs was nice too.

I will be shooting this bow for a long time!

Version: 2011 Hoyt Carbon Element


Pros: Extremely light-weight, zero hand shock

Cons: Cost

Full review:

I had the Hoyt Rampage XT on layaway, and then this bow came in. After i shot it there was no question i didn't care what it cost. It is super light, easy to shoot, and is well balanced. This is only my second bow, but if Hoyt keeps having bows like this then you won't go wrong with them. A friend said if you are going to pay that why not just get the PSE Omen. So to make him happy i went and shot one. Yea it will sling and arrow but it is not forgiving at all, so it don't matter how fast it is if you miss your target. My advise is pay a little extra and get this Carbon Element. It is going to last and won't dissapoint.

Awesome bow! Hoyt has done it again, quiet, smooth, no vibration!

Version: 2011 Hoyt Carbon Element


Pros: Quiet smooth no vibration

Cons: Pricey

Full review:

Awesome bow, not the fastest but if you want blazing speed you also get vibration noise and unforgiving shootability! The element is plenty fast for me and I have yet to find anything wrong with this bow!

My first Hoyt. This is a smooth quiet great shooting bow.

Version: 2011 Hoyt Carbon Element


Pros: This bow is dead in your hand and quiet.

Cons: My bow is black and the finish is not the best. I expected better from a bow that costs that much.

Full review:

The Element is a very accurate and quiet bow. I have not hunted with it yet but is is a great shooter. It just feels right. I have a HHA slider on it and a QAD HD rest. The bow was set up in the shop where I bought it and it shoots bullet holes through paper and was strait up and down on the walk back. I love this bow.

Smoothest,quietest, lightest bow I have ever shot. This will be my bow for the next ten years.

Version: 2012 Hoyt Carbon Element RKT


Pros: Zero recoil, no need for a wrist strap- the bow does not move when you release

Cons: nothing

Full review:

My set up is the 2012 Carbon Element RKT. 60# draw weight. Drop away rest, stabilizer, and quiver set up- all Hoyt. I am a Hoyt guy- and will always be a Hoyt guy. They say you get what you pay for. Very true with this bow- if you can afford it and are willing to pay, you will not be dissapointed.

Super nice bow, glad it choose me.

Version: 2011 Hoyt Carbon Element


Pros: Light weight, fast, and quite.

Cons: Not getting it in time for my antelope hunt.

Full review:

Super quite and feels like an extension of your arm.After getting it setup & tune, I was amazed by how well it feels and shoots. Hoyt did an innovation thing when they came up with the carbon riser.I will not have to get a new bow until my daughter takes this one away.

Greatest Shootability, zero handshock, vibration free bow, stable and accurate. A great shooter!!!

Version: 2013 Hoyt Carbon Element G3


Pros: Light weight, zero recoil, zero sound or vibration, stability, accuracy, design, speed enough for any game.

Cons: None. Mine was a bargain and I took it for half price, new with warranty. I understand for somebody is a bit pricey.

Full review:

Mine is 65# but real pounds are 69#. It is fast, accurate and it´s a pleasure to shoot. In hunting action it´s fast enough for killing any animal, with the proper setup. My arrows are 420 grain easton axis, 100gr point and fusion vanes. It has a very flat flight until 60 yds, with a 5 pin sight it is for me perfect for the hunt I do. The very light weight makes this bow very easy to carry on the field, for hours. In treestand it´s very handy and the rubber shelf allows not to do any sound at all. This will be my hunting/shooting bow for many years.

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