Whether you’re just hearing about bow hunting for the first time or have a little bit of an experience in the field of archery, you deserve the best bow release for hunting and archery either way.
Take it from an expert’s point of view, there’s a huge difference when shooting a bow with a release and just using your fingers. You’ll obviously be more comfortable and your level of accuracy will be greatly improved. The only problem, however, comes about when getting down to choosing the best- it’s definitely not a walk in the park which is where we come in.
Today, we’ll be taking a look at not only a comparison chart of 6 of the best but we’ll also have a look at an I depth buying guide then finish off with a product listing of 10 of the best archery release.
Let’s get started right away, shall we?
If you’d like to cut to the chase, you can have a quick look at 6 of our best hunting releases.
Name Type Rating Price
Scott Archery Caliper Grip Thumb Release 4.7 out of 5 Check Price
Tru-Fire Hardcore Revolution
Thumb Release 5 out of 5 Check Price
TruFire Hardcore Buckle Foldback
Wrist Release 5 out of 5 Check Price
TruFire Hurricane Extreme Buckle Wrist Release 4.8 out of 5 Check Price
Tru-Fire Edge Hand Held Thumb Release 4.8 out of 5 Check Price
TruFire Edge Buckle Foldback Wrist Release 4.8 out of 5 Check Price
Which is the Best Bow Release for Hunting?
Regardless of there being different types of releases, let us take a look at which really is the best bow release for hunting.
In most cases, you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to making your choice between either a thumb release or a wrist strap/index finger release.
Just as it would be an entirely personal opinion to choose which bow suits you best, the same goes for a bow release.
The wrist release for hunting
Most archers will also refer to this as the index finger release. Whereas it will be the perfect choice for you if you’re more likely to drop your release while hunting, it also just turns out to be the best as far as increasing power is concerned.
Whereas a thumb release will put more strain on your forearm, the wrist release will make it easier for you to be able to draw a lot of weight. This means that the level of fatigue will be less since the arm muscles will also come into play.
With the ability to be able to handle the weight better, you’ll also have the advantage of being able to shoot more accurately. Another added advantage you’ll be getting upon settling for the wrist release is speed. You’ll be able to draw your bow much faster and the same goes for shooting since you’ll be using your index finger which is somewhat close to the traditional style of archery we’re normally used to
A bonus to the accuracy as we’ve already seen is that you’ll not lose your release whatsoever since it’s somehow an extension of your hand.
The thumb release for hunting
This is the most popular the main reason being its level of comfort. We’ve already taken a look at the mechanism behind it’s working and as far as accuracy and ease of use are concerned, it simply is the perfect choice for you.
Whereas it may be outstanding in accuracy and usability, it’s somewhat not ideal for handling too much weight. There will be a lot of strain if you put too much weight on it not to mention you may easily miss your target.
The adjustments and customizations you will be able to make on a thumb release are much more as compared to what a wrist release allows you to. The best of these will have a rotating head which ensures you maintain a perfect form before taking your shot.
Even though you won’t handle a lot of weight, the odds of hitting your target will be higher and as a bonus, it is much more comfortable. After all, you won’t be making a lot of adjustments before you can get a perfect fit. This somewhat makes it an ideal choice if you’re looking for a multipurpose bow release- ideal for hunting and archery as well.
10 Best Bow Release Reviews for the Archer’s
Having taken a look at all you should have in mind as far as making your selection is concerned, how about we move on to seeing what 12 of the best have to offer us…
#1. Scott Archery Caliper Grip
Now, we are talking about the Scott Archery Caliper Grip Release. Let’s find out whether this is the best archery release, shall we?
Swivels a whole 360 degrees
When it all comes down to giving you an easy time, this release might just be the missing piece. Though the swivel motion is somehow stiff, it does move a whole 360 degrees. This saves you the trouble of having to compromise your form while shooting the arrows.
Has got a molded grip
In addition to ensuring being able to swivel 360 degrees, it also does come with a pistol grip. This will be both comfortable and at the same time firm ensuring there are zero fatigue and no premature release.
Still, at the grip, this release has got a knurled trigger that adds on to the outstanding grip and versatility as well
Delivers silent shots
One more thing that’s worth pointing out is that this release delivers silent shots which makes it more user-friendly as compared to most in its class.
Also…it will work perfectly for both left-handed and right-handed users.
- Has got a molded grip that’s comfortable and convenient.
- Swivels 360 degrees to ensure you don’t compromise on your form.
- It works perfectly for both the left-handed and right-handed users.
- All you’ll have to worry about is whether or not it will offer a perfect fit since it’s not adjustable
#2. Tru-Fire Hardcore Revolution
Starting with the construction alone, only a few thumb releases or none at all can rival this one. Considering the handle is made entirely out of CNC solid aluminum and a lanyard on the head. The lanyard bolts to the release making it easy for you to access
For the trigger thumb adjustment, you can set to any of the 16 positions it comes with so as to get the setting that is most comfortable with you- adds not only a natural touch to your shooting style but makes it more comfortable to use.
As for the tension on the knob, you can also set it to your desired position which makes it easier for you to do your hunting. There are separate setscrews that allow you to do this with utmost ease
The head can rotate around a whole 360 degrees. With this kind of free movement around the trigger, you get to have ultimate comfort as well as added accuracy. This is made possible by the 11 ball bearings that ensure the rotation is uninhibited.
Owing to the fact that it is usable by both the right handed and left handed, it saves you the trouble of having to look for one. Also, if you can use both hands, you won’t have to worry about fatigue whatsoever.
- Suitable for both the right handed and left handed- saves you the trouble of shopping for a compatible choice.
- 16-position trigger knob to suit your comfort level.
- CNC solid aluminum handle guarantees durability.
- The release may get stuck at times.
#3. TruFire Hardcore Buckle Foldback
Looking for the best compound bow release? Well, how about we take a look at whether the TruFire Hardcore will give you a kick for your buck when it comes to this, shall we?
An adjustable trigger pressures
Whereas most releases will only give you an option to alter the trigger travel, this one does so much more in addition to this. You can be able to adjust the trigger pressure from 3 to over 16 ounces and this can be done by just turning the screw a couple of times.
In addition to having an adjustable trigger pressure, the trigger you’ll be getting is the swept-back type and you can adjust the length over 5/8 inches
The Tru center technology for the hook
The body will pivot left or right for a total of 20 degrees which compensates for varying anchor point positions. This makes it impossible for it to slip even in loops
An outstanding buckle strap
In order to ensure you’ll get a consistent fit, the wrist strap is a super plush camo buckle strap which is also comfortable.
- Over 5/8-inch trigger length adjustment
- A 20-degree head pivot eliminates slips which make this the best compound bow release.
- Fits both the left and right hand- available for all.
- Despite the padding on the wrist strap, the fit is not guaranteed to be perfect.
#4. TruFire Hurricane Extreme Buckle
If you’re all about getting a perfect fit from a compound bow release, you should definitely take a look at the TruFire Hurricane. Let’s see what it’s got in store for us, shall we?
Whereas most wrist releases will have a Velcro strap, this one comes with a buckle strap which, as we’ve already seen is ideal for giving you a consistent fit. Owing to the fact that it is made out of nylon, it’s bound to last and will, at the same time be comfortable as well.
It is both right and left-handed?
You’ll not be needing any tools to be able to use this release. Considering this one will fit perfectly for both the right and left-handed users, it just is what you’re missing out on.
Adjustable trigger travel
Yet another outstanding feature on this release is the fact that it’s got an adjustable trigger travel. In addition to this, the release system is dual caliper and the trigger is spring loaded. With all of these working together, you’ll definitely be getting a kick for your buck.
- Fit perfectly for both the right-handed and the left-handed.
- A buckle strap for a consistent fit
- An adjustable trigger level makes it more comfortable to use.
- It might take some time to get the adjustments right
#5. Tru-Fire Edge Hand Held
Now, we have the Tru-Fire Edge Release. Let’s have a look t what it’s got in store for us, shall we?
The first thing that makes this stand out of the crowd and far much better as compared to the other thumb releases in its class is a trigger thumb adjustment system that can be altered to 16 different positions. This allows you to find the most comfortable setting before you can get to your hunting.
Secondly, unlike other thumb releases that are exclusive to only being operated with the left or right hand, this one just so happens to be ambidextrous. Whether you are left handed, right handed or both, it will serve you just right.
As far as comfort is concerned, this bow release might just happen to be the best for you owing to the act that it has an adjustable trigger system which also makes it one of the best performing thumb trigger releases for your bow.
Moving on to the durability, it is worth pointing out that it comes with a CNC machined aluminum handle. Being a handheld release, this is the best you could possibly get in today’s competitive market. The head of the Tru-Fire can rotate a whole 360 degrees hence giving you a torque-free shot
- CNC machined aluminum handle for utmost durability.
- Fully adjustable thumb knob for the perfect fit.
- Ambidextrous design- usable on both your left and right hand.
- It may take some time for you to get used to the thumb release especially if you are coming from the wrist release.
#6. TruFire Edge Buckle Foldback
Designed to offer both comfort and performance simultaneously, the TruFire Edge is definitely one of the best compound bow releases out there. Here’s what you’ll be getting.
By turning the lead clockwise or counterclockwise, you can be able to adjust the length between the head and the straps. As you do this., the length adjustment location may be locked in place.
A comfortable buckle straps
For a consistent fit all through, you’ll be getting buckle straps on the TruFire Edge. In addition to consistency, it’s simple design does not compromise on the comfort level which makes it the best bow release for hunting.
Fits both the right and left-handed
By giving a perfect fit for both the right-handed and the left-handed users without any additional gear or cumbersome adjustments, it’s simply bound to give you a kick for your buck.
An adjustable trigger travel
It’s got a dual caliper release with a spring-loaded trigger and in addition to this, the trigger travel is adjustable for a much comfortable experience.
- Fits both right-handed and left-handed users.
- A comfortable buckle strap for a consistent fit.
- An adjustable trigger travel for added comfort and performance.
- The release mechanism is not adjustable and may release the arrows prematurely after some time
#7. Tru Ball Max Hunter Pro
Another outstanding thumb release is the Tru Ball, Max Hunter. Here’s what you’ll be getting from it…
As far as hunting is concerned, the draw length just so happens to be one of the most important things. Well, to ensure that you get the best of this, this thumb release comes with a smaller head and jaws to give you the maximum length hence allowing you to reach maximum speed.
From the above buying guide, hunting and stealth go hand in hand which is why upon getting this thumb release, you’ll be getting the best hunting experience due to the silence level it has to offer. Simply put, you no longer have to worry about scaring away your prey
On the trigger release is also an adjustable sensitivity screw which allows you to alter the sensitivity to your own desired level for better precision and accuracy.
It also comes with a swiveling head that turns round to 360 degrees. This, in turn, gives you utmost comfort while handling the release which also adds on to the accuracy and comfort levels that it comes with.
Though you won’t be needing a wrist strap, you can use one with this handheld release. This makes it a better alternative especially if you are using a thumb release for the first time or are moving on to the wrist trigger releases.
You may need to oil the jaws since they may have a gritty feel to them based on your desired level of comfort.
- Usable with a wrist strap hence an ideal upgrade if you are migrating from the wrist strap.
- Silent- no clicks at all while loading it up which makes it the ultimate choice for hunting.
- Adjustable tension on the thumb for better precision and comfort
- You may develop calluses after using it for some time which may call for a pair of gloves
#8. Hot Shot Vapor 4
Wrapping up, we’ll be taking a look at the Hot Shot Vapor. It’s meant for anyone who’s looking for the best bow release for hunting and here’s why…
A fully adjustable thumb barrel
For the thumb barrel, you’ll be getting one that’s fully adjustable hence you can position it to where you deem fit for the most accurate and comfortable shots.
An automatically closing jaw
Without having to worry about any trigger set requirements, you’ll be getting an automatically closing jaw which means you’ve got less to worry about concerning the operation of this release.
There is also a crisp adjustable tension trigger. You can decrease or increase the tension on this to have it set just right
Zero noise internal actuating system
It’s not the best release for bowhunting if you’ll be scaring away your prey, right? Well, considering it’s got a zero-noise internal actuating system, you’ll clearly have better odds of hitting your target, won’t you?
- Zero noise production makes hunting much easier.
- Comes in the 3 and 4-finger configuration
- A crisp adjustable tension trigger and an automatically closing jaw
- It may take some time to get the trigger adjusted right but once you do it works perfectly
#9. Carter Enterprises Wise Choice
It’s the Carter Enterprises. Let’s take a look at what it packs under the hood now, shall we?
The tension is one of the most important things in archery or bow hunting which is why on this release, there’s a screw that makes this smooth hence making it one of the best thumb releases out there.
To ensure you use it as comfortably as possible, there is an index finger hole for a more consistent finger placement. Other than comfort, it also does serve well as far as getting an accurate shot is concerned. To make things even better, it has a smooth feel to it which as compared to other thumb releases has added accuracy.
Self-closing jaw. as compared to the thumb releases that require you to close the jaw manually, a self-closing jaw is much better since it allows you to have a cleaner, smoother and more stable release.
- Self-closing jaw for a cleaner and more accurate release.
- Tension adjustment system that allows you to achieve optimal comfort levels.
- For added comfort and stability, there is an index finger hole for a better grip
- It may take some time getting used to it if it’s the first handheld release.
#10. TruFire Patriot Archery
When it comes to making the best archery release, TrueFire has never disappointed. With this compound bow release, you’ll be getting both a dependable and trouble-free experience. Let’s see what it’s got in store for us, shall we?
First off, for the sake of durability, the same material has been used in the internal firing mechanism to ensure the release is not worn out. Besides this, the nylon strap is padded to add more comfort and strength to the release.
Adjustable trigger travel
You can adjust the length between the trigger and the strap by over 1” which makes using this release more convenient to use. In addition to having an adjustable trigger travel, you can use it with both the right and the left hand.
Available for young hunters
Not only does this release come in the adult size, but it’s also available for young hunters and the performance is just as outstanding.
- Fits both the left and the right hand
- Comes with an adjustable trigger travel- adjustable by over 1 inch
- A padded nylon strap for added comfort and strength to the release
- It will only be outstanding if the fit is perfect for you
#11. TruFire Smoke Adjustable Archery
Yet another one from TruFire is the TruFire Smoke. Let’s quickly have a look at the much that it packs under the hood, shall we?
An adjustable trigger travel
This is definitely not something you’ll get on just any bow release. With it being on the TruFire Smoke, you can be able to change the position of the trigger and have it in a position that you deem most comfortable.
In addition to having an adjustable trigger travel, there is also a dime sized head which provides a smooth release that will definitely make you a better archer.
For a perfect fit, the length is adjustable and considering it’s made of nylon it will, at the same time be comfortable to use
Fits both hands
Whether you’re right handed or left handed, this release will be equally comfortable. the fit will also be perfect without any overcomplicated setups
- A dime sized head for a smooth release hence higher accuracy
- Trigger thumb adjustment- it’s adjustable to as much as 16 positions for comfort and accuracy
- Fits both the left and the right hand
- The spring tension release system may take some time getting used to
#12. Scott Archery Longhorn Hunter
Coming up last on our list, we have the Scott Archery Longhorn Hunter Release. Here is what you should expect to get from it…
Adjustable levels of sensitivity. Even though it may be hard for you to get it right at first. Try out the different levels until you find what works best for you.
Attached to the release is a buckle strap that makes it more comfortable in your hand considering it is a three-finger type. It also serves quite well as far as getting an accurate shot is concerned. There is also a rope connector that allows for infinite thumb adjustment hence you don’t compromise your draw length.
Coming along with the Scott Archery Longhorn Hunter Release are interchangeable thumb pegs.
- Open ergonomic and full radius handle.
- Rope connector for an infinite length adjustment.
- Adjustable sensitivity to your desired comfort level for a perfect hunting experience.
- Sadly, there are no instructions on how you can adjust the tension
How to Choose the Best Bow Release – Buying Guide
If you want to shoot accurately with your bow, you’ve to choose the right bow release for hunting. let’s have a look at some of the key things you should take into account before making your purchase.
Which Type of Bow Release Would You Prefer?
First and foremost, before we delve into looking at any other things you ought to look for in a thumb release, we should first take a look at the options available for you in the market.
# Finger tabs and gloves: If you prefer to lean on more to the traditional hunting style, then this is definitely the best archery release for you.
You’ll be using your fingers for drawing and releasing the bow. With the finger tabs, you’ll have a better shot consistency since the bow slides off a single surface instead of all the three fingers. Though you’ll be using all your three fingers to pull the string back, there is a single tab on this which sits between the fingers and is attached to a glove.
The two main designs of the finger tabs are the split-finger shooting and the other has the three fingers for drawing your string below the nock. For the former, the tab is between the index finger which is above the nock and the middle and ring fingers rest below the nock.
The best archery release of this kind will have the glove made out of a durable material such as nylon or leather which should also be comfortable enough to save you from any calluses. As for the tab, you’ll get a variety of materials such as plastic or leather.
# The hinge release: Also known as the back-tension release, the hinge release will come in handy quite well if you’ve got unsteady hands or if you tend to be unsure of your shots.
It’s designed in such a way that there is no conscious release of the bowstring. Upon taking your aim and pulling back the bowstring the arrow will automatically be released. All you’ll be needed to do is focus on the tension.
If you’d like to have more control over everything, you could take a look at the thumb release or the resistance activated bow release
# The thumb release trigger: Using this is quite straightforward which is one of the reasons most people will choose to go for it. Boasting to possess both accuracy and ease of use, the thumb release trigger will release the ow string just by using a thumb button.
The mechanism behind the working of this trigger is in such a way that as you draw the bow closer, the thumb trigger will be drawn closer to the thumb. This makes it much more convenient and easier to use as compared to the wrist release.
Whereas it is much easier to master as compared to the wrist release, you can stop the arrow from firing just by a simple upward motion of your thumb to hold the trigger.
# The resistance activated bow release: The functioning of this kind of bow release is somewhat self-explanatory from its name. The bowstring is let loose once the maximum tension is attained.
Whereas it may seem to work in a similar manner as the back-tension release, there is a thumb triggered safety that eliminates some of the surprises. Upon reaching the full draw of your bow, you can release the safety then slightly squeeze your shoulder blades to release the trigger.
Imagine having the convenience of a back-tension release and the control of a thumb release all in one, quite handy, don’t you agree?
# The index finger release: Commonly referred to by most as the wrist release, the index finger release, though not entirely the best release for bowhunting is also commonly used.
The release is strapped to your wrist which basically makes it easier for you to handle a lot of weight as we’ll see later on. The only downside to having it is that it may take some time before you master how to get an accurate shot.
Which type of Release Offers the Best Length?
When it comes to the length, we mostly have to worry about whether or not reaching the trigger will be a problem.
For a thumb release, you’ll obviously be using your thumb whereas a wrist release requires you to use your index finger. Most thumb releases will have the trigger move closer to your thumb the longer your draw is but nonetheless, it should offer room for adjustment in the sense that at full draw, the trigger should be conveniently close to the thumb.
For a wrist release, the trigger length adjustment is much simpler, more straightforward and tends to work for most people. Considering you’ll also be using your index finger, it will be much easier to reach the trigger.
How Comfortable is the Release?
One of the main reasons as to why you’re reading this buying guide right now is probably because you’re not contented with how much your bow release has to offer, right?
From an expert’s point of view, I’d say that accuracy and comfort pretty much go hand in hand and it would be impossible to have one without the other. The best bow release for hunting, therefore, should be comfortable enough for you to use without getting fatigued in either your fingers or forearm more than you should.
The Level of Noise
Since there’s friction involved in shooting an arrow, there’s bound to be a little bit of noise, right? The matter at hand, however, is whether or not this level is tolerable.
For a thumb release, the adjustments are silent and the same goes for releasing the trigger and the arrow.
On the other hand, you would prefer to use a wrist release which will have either an adjustable buckle or Velcro strap. The latter could be used for anything other than hunting since you don’t want to scare away your potential kill.
How Many Bow Releases Should You be Having?
When it comes to archery and bow hunting, one is definitely never enough. There’ll come a time when you’ll need a release that delivers optimal strength and, in some cases, you’ll need one that gives more accuracy than strength.
Considering neither a thumb release or a bow release will give you both optimal strength and accuracy, it’s recommended to have both. With a wrist release, you’ll be able to shoot your arrow longest as you use your arm and your hand and a thumb release, on the other hand, makes it easier for you to hit your target since you’ll be more stable.
The Amount of Customization it Offers?
The stock settings are not always the best as far as bow hunting is concerned, right?
Even though most releases will already be pre-set by the recommended settings out of the box, you could tweak them a little bit as you deem fit.
On a bow release for instance, you may have the sensitivity so high that a slight push on the trigger releases the arrow. This is most handy in the thumb releases though it can also come in handy on the wrist releases if you’d like to get a more accurate shot.
If you prefer to use the wrist strap releases, you could consider taking a closer look at the straps themselves. You’ll mostly be getting a buckle or a Velcro strap for these and each one of them has got its upside and downside.
Whereas the buckle will not threaten to come loose whatsoever and will give you a consistent fit, it will not be as easily adjustable and comfortable to use as the Velcro strap. The Velcro straps, on the other hand, will not be ideal for hunting since you can easily scare away your prey.
On the other hand, whereas you can be able to adjust the Velcro strap, there is no guarantee that the fit will be as consistent as what you’ll be getting from a buckle. Also, considering you’ll be using one for bow hunting, the Velcro strap is a little bit noisy which may scare away your target.
Whereas the wrist and thumb releases will grant you a lot of customization, some releases such as the back-tension release don’t require any customizations. When you draw the bow to full length, and the tension is highest, the arrow is automatically fired. You should obviously be willing to spend a little bit more of cash on such a release.
How Much Should You Pay for an ideal Bow Release?
The basic assumption when it comes to purchasing most items is that the more you’ll be spending on it, the better the quality and performance you’ll get, right?
Well, as much as the above assumption has some truth to it, you should, first of all, take into consideration how you use your bow. The thumb releases and the back-tension releases will come at a slightly steeper price as compared to the wrist release since they’re more silent and offer better accuracy but on the downside, you won’t shoot as far as you would with a wrist release.
In a nutshell, when it comes to the price, it’s all about your personal opinion. Before you make your purchase, have in mind a clear picture of why you’d like to get one; there’s no need in spending too much on something you won’t be needing, don’t you agree?
Having taken a look at the thumb vs finger releases in 2018 as well as our buying guide of how to get the best, it’s time to wrap things up.
You should, first of all, consider what you mostly do with your bow. You don’t want to spend too much then you should on a release and on the other hand, you should not sacrifice performance, comfort, and durability for the price unless you’re on a budget.
With the product listing of the best bow release for hunting, you’ve got the wrist and thumb releases. Whether you need one for archery or hunting, I’m sure you’re bound to get one that suits you best just take your time to go through each product- you deserve the best. Happy Hunting!