The Best Budget Bow of 2022

by: Jace Bauserman

His name was Dwight Schuh, and if you're a bowhunter and don't know the name, you need to do some research. Dwight was the former Editor in Chief of Bowhunter magazine, Host of Bowhunter T.V., and Bowhunter Hall of Fame inductee. More than that, though, Dwight was a great friend, mentor, and one of the best bowhunters to ever draw a string back. 

I often heckled Dwight about his bow choice — not because his bow was a Hoyt but because it was a Hoyt budget bow. I don't remember the exact model, but he loved that thing. As the editor of a national bowhunting publication and hosting a top-level outdoor television show, Schuh could have shot any bow he wanted. Often, he didn't. It seemed every time I saw Dwight on television or hunted with him, he was shooting the same Hoyt budget bow. 


"Budget bow is just a name," Schuh told me while hunting mule deer with me near my Colorado home. "The bow fits me better than any bow I've ever shot. It's set up just right, and it puts arrows where I want them. Why would I want to disrupt that?"

And that was Dwight — honest, straightforward, and never one to mince words about product performance. If the product worked, he used it, and if the product didn't work, he didn't. 

I feel the same way about Hoyt's 2022 Torrex. An affordable, racy-looking hunting rig, the 30 3/4-inch axle-to-axle Torrex hits a sweet spot in length — maneuverable for treestand goers and mountain roamers alike. The bow's 3.8-pound (without accessories) weight sweetens the spec pot. Many flagship models tip the scale over four pounds, so you need to notice when you find a budget compound bow with this type of weight and measurement. The bow carries like a dream, and it doesn't feel like you're toting a tree trunk through the woods after adding accessories to the bow.

Hitting a top speed of 327 fps (ATA), the 7-inch brace-height bow isn't a flamethrower, but Hoyt didn't design the Torrex to break radar screens. Instead, Hoyt built this best compound budget bow to be the complete bowhunting package — a tough-as-nails rig that blends smoothness, speed, and an ultra-quiet shot into a compound that wears an under-$800 price tag. Impressive. 

This affordable hunting bow features Hoyt's legendary Cam & 1/2 System — a design that fuses the top and bottom cams to ensure those cams unleash fury at the same time. They are buttery smooth and promote a level of tunablility and accuracy you have to shoot to appreciate fully. These cams graced the limbs of Hoyt flagship models for years. Just food for thought. 

Hoyt bows are the industry's toughest; that's no secret. I've dropped mine out of treestands, down rock slides, in rivers, etc. Guess what? They all kept working, not just working, but performing like I'd just taken them out of the bow press after a final tune. Adding to this best budget compound bow's toughness are the Parallel Split Limbs and Tec-Lite Riser. These limbs eliminate the v-groove and limb-bolt groove. Why is this important? This is the area on many bows where cracks, splits, and bad things happen. The Parallel Split Limbs are lighter, which increases arrow speed and accuracy. These limbs have survived 1,000 dry-fires from 80-pound bows, and then they are slapped back on a new rig and spit carbon perfectly downrange. Not bad for "budget limbs," right? 

As tough as the limbs on this best budget bow are, the riser is even tougher. I'm a fan of the Tec-Lite Riser — I always will be. The risers are dry-fired 1,500 times before being considered worthy of wearing Hoyt limbs and cams. I've trusted Tec-Lite risers many times during my bowhunting tenure, and they've always performed brilliantly. They feel great in hand and have a balanced feel at static and full draw. 

While the Torrex is loaded with flagship-like technologies, another you need to know about is the grip. Many bowhunters note their most significant reason for spending $300 and $800 more on a bow is because the grip didn't feel right in their hand. Budget bows get a terrible grip wrap, and I've shot some with sub-par grips, and I get dropping the extra coin. The bow's grip must feel perfect. The good news: This affordable hunting bow has an outstanding grip. I praised the grip in multiple bow reviews over the years. The grip has a perfect width and overall shape mixture, and the bow hand falls into it like a glove. The grip's angle is thin but not too thin, and it's flat-backed and perfectly angled.  

Of course, you can have all the fancy-to-do technologies in the world, but what matters is the question: Is the bow accurate, durable, dead in hand, and quiet? The answer to all of the above when it comes to this best budget compound bow is: Yes. 

If you're looking for an under-$800 compound that will answer the hunting bell season after season and shoot as good as many flagship models, the Torrex is your bow. The bow is available in peak draw weights of 40, 50, 60, 65, and 70 pounds, and the 26 to 30-inch draw-length range is adjustable in 1/2-inch increments without the need for a bow press.

The Torrex, like many of Hoyt's flagship bows, is offered in other affordable hunting bow models like $899 Torrex XT, and $899 Torrex XT Long Draw. The XT has a fighting weight of 4 pounds and hits a top ATA fps of 336, and the XT Long Draw mirrors those specs. The Torrex XT is fitted with a 6-inch brace height and measures 30 inches between the axles, and the XT Long Draw is branded with a 7-inch brace height and has an axle-to-axle length of 30 inches.

If you're looking the best budget bow to tote in the woods, look no further than Hoyt's Torrex Family. If you ever decided to upgrade from this bow, it will be because you choose to do so, not because of bow failure or lack of performance. This bow works as good for beginners as it does for sage veterans like the great, late, Dwight Schuh.