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10 Best Bow Sights in 2021 – Reviews & Top Picks

Last Updated on June 3, 2021

CBE Tactic Bow Sight setup

After you’ve spent a ton of money on your bow, the last thing you want to do is throw a cheap sight on it and miss every shot. But you don’t want to spend a ton of time and money purchasing different sights trying to find the right one.

That’s why we took the time to track down the best sights out there and present you with the best options here! We’ve highlighted the best choices for any budget; that way, you can find the perfect sight the first time instead of making a purchase and hoping for the best.

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A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Trophy Ridge Volt 5 Pin Bow Sight Trophy Ridge Volt 5 Pin Bow Sight
  • Works with both left- and right-hand bows
  • Easy to use windage and elevation adjustments
  • Five horizontal optic pins for maximum visibility
  • Best Value
    Second place
    Southland Archery Supply SAS 5-Pin Bow Sight Southland Archery Supply SAS 5-Pin Bow Sight
  • Works with both left- and right-hand bows
  • Easy to adjust for different elevations and windages
  • Bubble indicator for leveling
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    Garmin Xero A1i Bow Sight Garmin Xero A1i Bow Sight
  • Bow auto ranges to your target
  • No physical pins to obstruct your view
  • Works with Garmin GPS to track the location and distance of each shot
  • TRUGLO Storm Compact Bow Sight TRUGLO Storm Compact Bow Sight
  • Works for both right- and left-handed shooters
  • Three different pin colors (even on the five-pin setup)
  • Sturdy aluminum design
  • IQ Compound Bow Sight IQ Compound Bow Sight
  • Options for both five and seven pins
  • Retina lock technology lets you get tighter shooting groups
  • Easy windage and elevation adjustments
  • The 10 Best Bow Sights – Reviews 2021

    1. Trophy Ridge Volt 5 Pin Bow Sight – Best Overall

    Trophy Ridge Volt 5 Pin Bow Sight

    When you’re looking for a great mix of affordability and performance, the Trophy Ridge Volt 5 Pin Bow Sight delivers. It works for both left-handed and right-handed bows and uses bright optics for superb visibility in low-light settings.

    It utilizes a precision bubble level for aligning shots and has an easy-to-use windage and elevation adjustment system that lets you set up every shot with ease. It’s incredibly affordable and boasts a durable aluminum design.

    Our biggest complaint with this site is that four of the five pins utilize the same color, making them a bit difficult to tell apart when lining up long-distance shots. It’s not perfect, but for the price, you’re not going to find anything better.

    Pros
    • Precision installed bubble level makes it easy to align shots
    • Works with both left- and right-hand bows
    • Five horizontal optic pins for maximum visibility
    • Easy to use windage and elevation adjustments
    • Great for low visibility settings
    • Affordably priced for a top-notch sight
    Cons
    • Four out of five of the horizontal pins are green which can mess with aiming

    2.  Southland Archery Supply SAS 5-Pin Bow Sight – Best Value

    Southland Archery Supply SAS 5-Pin Bow Sight

    If you’re looking for the best bow sight for the money, look no further than the Southland Archery Supply 5-Pin Bow Sight. It’s an extremely low-priced option that comes loaded with features. First, it works with both left- and right-hand bows, adding to its overall versatility.

    From there, the elevation and windage adjustments are easy to make, but you do have to use a tool to do it. So, you’ll need to come prepared before you need to make your shot. Otherwise, your target might get away while you’re finishing your final adjustments.

    This bow sight does come with a bubble indicator to help you line up every shot. Finally, while this bow sight does come with LED lights, they turn on and off intermittently. If this is a feature you plan on using consistently, you might want to upgrade to our top choice.

    Pros
    • Extremely low priced
    • Works with both left- and right-hand bows
    • Bubble indicator for leveling
    • Easy to adjust for different elevations and windages
    Cons
    • LED lights work intermittently

    3. Garmin Xero A1i Bow Sight – Premium Choice

    Garmin Xero A1i Bow Sight

    If you’re looking for the best bow sight out there, the Garmin Xero A1i Bow Sight is it. It utilizes a pin-free design, so you have an unobstructed view of your target at all times. However, you’ll still have all the advantages that a pin provides with LED sights.

    You can adjust these LED “pins” to various configurations to match your personal preference or shooting conditions. Furthermore, if you pair this bow sight with a compatible Garmin GPS, you can track each shot’s location and distance.

    However, the most impressive feature of this bow sight is that it auto ranges to your target. All you need to do is line up what you’re trying to shoot in the sights, and the bow does the rest!

    While this is the best bow sight that we looked at, we couldn’t elevate it to our top choice due to its astronomical price tag. Also, keep in mind that you’ll need to purchase either a right-handed or a left-handed sight; you can’t switch the individual sight around for different shooters. It’s worth every penny, but it’s 20 times more expensive than our top choice.

    Pros
    • Bow auto ranges to your target
    • Works with Garmin GPS to track the location and distance of each shot
    • No physical pins to obstruct your view
    • Customizable “pins” to your location or preference
    Cons
    • 20x more expensive than other models
    • You have to purchase either a left-handed or right-handed sight – it’s not interchangeable

    4. TRUGLO Storm Compact Bow Sight

    TRUGLO Storm Compact Bow Sight

    TRUGLO offers two different bow sights in their Storm Compact line. They have both three-pin and five-pin options, and both have an affordable price tag. Both sights are compatible with both left-handed and right-handed bows and feature a sturdy aluminum design that ensures that this sight will last for years to come.

    Both setups utilize three different pin colors, so you don’t have to worry about blending the pins when you’re making longer-range shots. While there are tons of things to love about the TRUGLO Storm Compact Bow Sight, we couldn’t move it farther up our list due to the fact that the windage and elevation locks struggle to keep everything in place.

    As you’re moving from location to location, you’ll find that everything shifts a bit, leaving you to remake all your adjustments when you get to your next location.

    Pros
    • They have both three-pin and five-pin options
    • Very affordable
    • Works for both right- and left-handed shooters
    • Sturdy aluminum design
    • Three different pin colors (even on the five-pin setup)
    Cons
    • The elevation and windage locks don’t stay in place

    5. IQ Compound Bow Sight

    IQ Compound Bow Sight

    If you’re looking for a top-notch compound bow sight that you can use in every state, the IQ Compound Bow Sight is a great choice. It doesn’t utilize any batteries, which means that it’s legal in all 50 states. But it also means that it’s a bit harder to see in low light conditions, and there are no LEDs to help you out.

    The IQ Compound Bow Sight offers both a five and seven-pin configuration, allowing you maximum versatility when setting up your bow. Additionally, both the windage and elevation adjustments are easy to make.

    Finally, the IQ Compound Bow Sight utilizes a unique retina lock technology that lets you get tighter shooting groups on long-range targets.

    While this bow sight comes with tons of premium features, it’s also a bit more expensive than many of the other options that we reviewed. However, the biggest drawback to this bow sight is that it only mounts to left-handed bows. While left-handed shooters will love this, it makes it so most of the market can’t use this bow sight.

    Pros
    • Options for both five and seven pins
    • Easy windage and elevation adjustments
    • Retina lock technology lets you get tighter shooting groups
    • No batteries (legal in all states)
    Cons
    • It only works for left-handed shooters
    • More expensive model
    • No batteries (makes it hard to see in low light conditions)

    6. CBE Tactic Bow Sight

    CBE Tactic Bow Sight

    Another decent bow sight is the CBE Tactic. While it’s a good quality bow sight, it’s a bit more expensive than other comparable models. The CBE Tactic does work for both left- and right-handed shooters, which is a great perk.

    From there, you can make both windage and elevation without any tools, allowing you to make adjustments in the field quickly. If you want a five-pin setup that has that, but for those that prefer the more straightforward three-pin setup, you can save a few bucks by going for that design.

    But even while they offer a cheaper model, both are a bit more expensive considering their lack of premium features. Making matters worse, while the CBE Tactic Bow Sight comes with a slot for an LED light, you have to purchase it separately.

    Pros
    • Works for both left- and right-handed shooters
    • Options for both three and five pins
    • Tool-less windage and elevation adjustments
    Cons
    • More expensive for what you get
    • It does not come with the light as pictured (sold separately)

    7. TOPOINT ARCHERY CNC Tool-Less Bow Sight

    TOPOINT ARCHERY CNC Tool-Less Bow Sight

    The TOPOINT Archery CNC Tool-Less Bow Sight is another outstanding choice if you’re looking for a bow sight. Not only do you have the ability to adjust brightness levels, and it works with both left- and right-handed bows, but it also has five different color designs to choose from.

    This might not sound like much, but having a sight that matches your bow makes everything look a bit more premium. As the name implies, you don’t need any tools for either windage or elevation adjustments, which is another great perk.

    Finally, they have options for both five and seven sight pins, making this an excellent choice for those that want a little more control over their shot.

    But while there are tons of perks about this bow sight, there’s a reason it slid so far down our list. First, when you’re using this as a left-handed bow sight, all of the elevation and windage adjustments are upside down.

    More importantly, the pins themselves are a bit flimsy. While this isn’t too big of an issue, it’s easy to imagine them breaking with even a little accidental contact.

    Pros
    • Five designs to choose from
    • Adjustable brightness levels
    • Works with both left- and right-handed shooters
    • Options for both five and seven pins
    • Tool-free windage and elevation adjustments
    Cons
    • When used by left-handed shooters, everything is upside down
    • Sight pins are a little flimsy

    8. Rocky Mountain 56101 Dovetail Mount Sight

    Rocky Mountain 56101 Dovetail Mount Sight

    The Rocky Mountain 56101 Dovetail Mount Sight is a good choice for right-handed shooters. However, it is not reversible, and they don’t have a left-handed option available in this model. But if you’re a right-handed shooter, you don’t have to worry about that.

    The sight itself features a durable aluminum construction and has an affordable price. However, it is a bit on the bulkier side and heavier side compared to other bow sights.

    Furthermore, there are no lights on the pins, making them a little harder to see in low-light conditions. But not everything about this bow sight is bad. For instance, you can make tool-free adjustments to both the windage and elevation, which is excellent for making last-minute adjustments.

    It’s a good choice, but it’s not a great one.

    Pros
    • You can make tool-free elevation and windage adjustments
    • Durable aluminum construction
    • Affordably priced
    Cons
    • Only works with right-handed bows
    • No lights in the pins
    • A little heavier than other models

    9. VIPER Archery Compound Bow Sight

    VIPER Archery Compound Bow Sight

    VIPER optics might not make the best bow sights out there, but they squeak their way onto our top 10 list by creating a durable bow sight, even if it is a little bare on features. It’s made in America and has a sturdy aluminum construction with steel hardware.

    Durability and quality aren’t a concern with this VIPER Archery Compound Bow Sight. Furthermore, it does have bright optics and easy to change windage and elevation adjustments. But what keeps it from rising higher on our list is the fact that it only comes in a three-pin design.

    Despite that fact, VIPER prices it like a premium bow sight. Finally, while you can easily adjust both the windage and elevation, actually seeing those adjustments is a bit difficult while you’re in the shooting position.

    Pros
    • Easy to change height and windage elevations
    • Bright optics
    • American-made
    • Durable aluminum construction with steel hardware
    Cons
    • It only has a three-pin design
    • Hard to see windage and elevation adjustments when shooting

    10.  APEX GEAR Covert 4 Pin Bow Sight

    APEX GEAR Covert 4 Pin Bow Sight

    While the APEX Gear Covert 4 Pin Bow Sight makes our top ten, it’s a narrow addition. First, APEX built this bow sight in China, which is notorious for quality control issues. From there, it’s heavy. It weighs in at a full pound, while other bow sights typically weigh four to six ounces.

    Another drawback is that this bow sight only offers a four-pin design. While you might think that a Chinese-made bow sight that lacks features would be affordable, this is one of the more expensive bow sights that we looked at.

    It does offer a tool-free height and elevation adjustment system, and it does work with both right- and left-handed bows. But what got this sight onto our list is the ability to use a traditional fixed pin mechanism and the ability to unlock the pins for longer shots.

    It’s far from perfect, but you could do worse than the APEX Gear Covert 4 Pin Bow Sight.

    Pros
    • You can use a traditional fixed pin or unlock for longer shots
    • Easy to make tool-free adjustments
    • Works with both right- and left-handed bows
    Cons
    • More expensive for what you get
    • Heavy for a bow sight
    • It only has a four-pin design
    • Made in China

    Buyer’s Guide

    Finding the right bow sight can seem a little overwhelming. With so many great choices out there, it can be hard to identify precisely what you need. That’s where we come in.

    We developed this comprehensive buyer’s guide to help you through some of the most important questions. That way, you can rest easy knowing that you got the right bow sight the first time.

    Batteries vs. No Batteries

    While battery-aided bow sights have tremendous advantages over their non-battery-powered counterparts, they simply aren’t allowed in many states. In fact, while 27 different states currently allow electronic bow-mounted devices, that means that 23 states currently ban them.

    The states that currently allow electronic bow mounted devices are as follows: Arizona, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.

    While it might seem odd that specific states don’t allow something as simple as a battery-powered bow sight, they claim that the laws help preserve the close-range nature of bowhunting.

    How Many Pins Do You Need?

    The number of pins that you need really comes down to how far away your target will be. You can set each pin to different distances, so if you know how far away the target is, you’ll know which pin to aim for.

    While many hunters want as few pins as possible to simplify the sight, if you’re not quite sure how far away your target will be, more pins are better. For example, if you have a five-pin setup, you can set them up for 20, 30, 40, 50, and 60 yards, respectively.

    Even better, when you’re heading out for a situation that you know won’t require more than a few pins, most bow sights will let you remove the extra pins that you don’t need.

    Windage and Elevation Adjustments

    You might not think that windage and elevation adjustments are as necessary on a bow as they are on a gun, but you’d be wrong.

    While you’re typically shooting something far closer with a bow, you also have a slower moving and larger projectile. That means that the elements have more time to wreak havoc on your shot. When you properly adjust for wind and elevation, this is one less thing you need to worry about.

    Left-Handed vs. Right-Handed Sights

    Getting the right sight is essential. It’s not like a gunsight where you can install it on any compatible weapon. With a bow sight, it needs to reach out in the right direction, which makes certain bow sights fundamentally incompatible with other-handed bows.

    Make sure that your bow sight will work with the way you shoot. This is even more important if you’re a left-handed shooter. That’s because, with many ambidextrous bow sights, all the windage and elevation adjustments are backward for left-handed shooters.

    If you’re used to it, then it’s no big deal, but if you’re a beginner, it’s going to be another challenge that you need to overcome – and one that you can easily avoid by getting a left-handed only bow sight.

    actual photo of CBE Tactic Bow Sight

    When and Where Are You Shooting?

    While you need to check with applicable state laws, if you plan on shooting near dusk or dawn, having a bow sight with illuminated LED lights or pins can be a huge advantage. However, if you only plan on shooting when lighting conditions are ideal, then having an illuminated sight is far less critical.

    Weight and Quality Matters

    You need to look for a few different things when breaking down the construction of your bow sight. First, it’s the material that the manufacturer makes the bow sight from. Most higher-end bow sights utilize an aluminum construction for their lightweight design and durability.

    But just as important as the construction material of the sight is the material of the pins. The pins need to be sturdy. Otherwise, they’ll fluctuate and potentially move after each shot.

    Finally, while the country of origin can be indicative of quality, that’s not always the case, and it’s essential to inspect your bow sight as soon as you get it. Many owners report bow sights that come missing a pin or bubble level, no matter where the sight is made.

    Just be sure to open up your site and look it over instead of waiting a few months until the first time you need it when the warranty or return policy might have already expired.

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    Conclusion

    When you’re selecting your bow sight, it can seem like there are a million different factors you need to consider. But before you get wrapped up in all the latest and greatest features, ask yourself what you actually need.

    Not only will you save a little bit of money by only getting what you need, but you’ll also know what to make sure that your new bow sight has. Hopefully, this guide helped you break down exactly what you need in your new bow sight and helped you pick out a top-notch one for your next hunt or target shooting session!

    About the Author Robert Sparks

    Robert’s obsession with all things optical started early in life, when his optician father would bring home prototypes for Robert to play with. Nowadays, Robert is dedicated to helping others find the right optics for their needs. His hobbies include astronomy, astrophysics, and model building. Originally from Newark, NJ, he resides in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where the nighttime skies are filled with glittering stars.