Mathews Creed Review
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Editors' reviewMathews has produced another high quality compact hunting bow. Sporting a forgiving 7-inch brace height, decent speeds up to 328 feet per second, and virtually no hand shock, the Creed is sure to be the bow of choice for many shooters despite the $999 price tag. Those interested in a single-cam hunting bow with lots of technology backed by a solid name, should give the Creed a test shot.
FinishMathews finish options are limited when compared to other manufacturers in the archery industry, but the quality is always superb and able to withstand normal shooting conditions. Despite the Geo grid technology and lots or hidden surface area, shooters will not find a flaw in any of the finish options. For shooters interested in a camo pattern, Mathews offers the Creed in their very own Lost Camo design. Mathews also offers the Creed in solid black, or a special order combination of camo and black. The highly sought after tactical pattern, which features a black riser and graphic carbon fiber limbs is also available on the Creed (although most shops have this bow listed a little higher in price). Regardless of which option shooters choose, it will look great.
RiserMathews chose to use the Geo Grid Lock riser on the Creed. This technology was also featured on the Mathews Helim bow as well. The ultra lightweight riser is designed to offer superior strength along with being lightweight. The Creed weighs in at a mere 3.85 pounds, making it one of the lightest bows available in the 2013 lineup. The front of the riser sports a stabilizer-mounting hole for shooters who desire weight out front, or added vibration-dampening devices. Directly inline with this is the Mathews rear mounting string stop system called the Dead End String Stop Lite. This is similar technology to the Dead End String Stop, but offers a lighter overall weight cutting down on the mass of the bow. This is also offered in Lost Camo as well as black so it will match the bows finish as well. To further assist with vibration dampening, the top of the riser features Mathews Harmonic dampener, while the Harmonic Dampener Lite is featured on the bottom of the riser. These dampeners are weights located within a rubber housing that fit in a circular hole cut in the riser. Any residual vibration caused by the release of the arrow is transferred to the weight and deadened before the shooter is able to feel it. These dampeners are offered in a variety of colors as well allowing shooters a little customization and personal taste. Just above the arrow mounting hole is the Mathews logo, which offers a nice look to the bow.
GripMathews offers two stock grips for the Creed, but there are several after market grips available as well. The Walnut wooden grip is the stock grip of choice for the Creed. Not only is the dark walnut grip slimmer than Mathews wooden grips of the past, but it also has a distinct line down the back of the grip making it easier for shooters to align the grip with proper hand placement. The wooden grip is comfortable and is much warmer than some grips on cold days in the timber. The second option is Mathews Focus Grip, which will come standard on the Tactical finish option, or as an upgrade on the other finish options. This grip is a thinner option and is rubber composite instead of the signature wooden Mathews grip. Many shooters prefer the slim grip. The Focus grip also sports the centerline in different customizable color options to match shooters tastes.
LimbsMathews has strayed away from their solid slim limb technology used for many years, and equipped the Creed with split limb technology. In theory, split limbs handle the stress better than solid limb construction, although Mathews is not known for having limb issues in the past. The limbs feature the Creed logo as well, which looks great on any of the finish options. The parallel limb design also works to eliminate extra vibration and noise caused after the shot by working directly opposite of each other. The draw weight is somewhat limited in 50-70-pounds, but most hunters should be able to find a weight that works for them. Although there are no stock dampeners, there are many aftermarket split limb dampeners available for shooters who are interested.
Eccentric SystemThe Creed features the all-new SimPlex Cam, which powers the bow to speeds up to 328 feet per second with 80% let off. The high quality aluminum grade cam is not only superior in strength, but it is lightweight as well. The single cam design has a draw stop that rolls around to make contact with the bottom limb. Draw lengths are available in half-inch increments from 25-30 inches. However, cams are draw length specific,
Draw Cycle/ShootabilityThe Creed single cam bow is designed for hunting. While drawing the bow, shooters experience a smooth draw from start to finish. There are no noticeable humps in the draw cycle, and the weight seems to be evenly distributed throughout as well. Shooters will notice a significant let off into the back wall, which may take some getting used to. With a limb assisted draw stop, the back wall on the Creed is solid for sure. However, the valley of the Creed is rather short. Shooters will not be able to creep much at all without the string wanting to move forward. A short valley is not a bad thing as it reinforces proper shooting technique, and after spending some time shooting the Creed, the draw is very comfortable. However, it may take a few shots for shooters to become comfortable, especially if they are used to a longer valley. After the shot, there is no handshock or vibration to speak of. Despite being a lightweight bow, the noise and vibration are virtually nonexistent, which makes the Creed a joy to shoot. Overall, the Creed has a favorable draw cycle, and the back wall is rather solid as well. Shooters should have no trouble adjusting to the Creed's draw force curve.
Mathews Creed vs. Mathews Heli-m
|Bow||Mathews Creed||Mathews Heli-m|
|Brace Height||7 "||7 "|
|AtA Length||30 "||30 "|
|Draw Length||26.5 " - 29.5 "||26 " - 30 "|
|Draw Weight||50 lbs - 70 lbs||40 lbs - 70 lbs|
|IBO Speed||328 fps||332 fps|
|Weight||3.85 lbs||3.5 lbs|
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The Creed takes the place of the 2012 Helim as Mathews' flagship hunting bow. The Creed is .35 of a pound heavier, although this is probably not noticeable for most shooters. The specs of each bow are very similar, but the cams are slightly different in feel, which ultimately comes down to personal preference that can only be decided by shooting the rigs back to back. The Mathews Heli-m cam is slightly faster, but the minimal difference should not be the sole purpose for choosing one over the other. All in all, both bows use similar technologies and the decision comes down to preference. However, those currently shooting a Helim may not experience enough difference to justify the $999 price tag.