Carbon Express has made great crossbows for years. This year, they made a good crossbow in the CX-3.
It seems like they're falling behind in the specialization that is occurring with other bows: it was not particularly fast, nor light, and the trigger is nothing to write home about.
Still, it is fast enough, easy to use in the field and has a great general feel and balance when shouldered. And we're big fans of the ultra-cool Kryptek camo.
Speed: 331 fps
Sound: 96.8 dB
Weight: 5.42 pounds
Hunting Weight: 9 pounds, 1 ounce
What We Like: It generally shoots well, and we know CE bows are extremely accurate.
What We'd Change: Give me something head-turning, and upgrade that trigger.
About our 2015 Crossbow Tests
This is probably the best part of our job here at Crossbow Revolution. We assemble a pile of the latest crossbows from the best companies and shoot each one — a lot — recording the results all the while. There are always surprises — some good, some bad.
Like how awesome it was to shoot a 440-fps crossbow! But who knew that it would be that hard to cock, and I'm no cocking sissy! And then there was the bow that had so much going for it, but the trigger felt gritty and hesitated, like someone had dragged it along a beach.
At the end of the day, it's tough to go wrong with any of these 2015 models. Really, it's all about what you want in your hunting tool — speed, low price, a small package, a quiet bow, smooth trigger?
We hope our play...I mean, work...helps you when you're in the market for a new crossbow.
How We Tested
Because of the large number of variables involved, some of which are extremely difficult to control, we will not be purporting this to be a scientific test, but, instead, a general hands-on report so you'll have information if you are looking at buying a new crossbow.
We test right out of the box, as any consumer would receive it. While crossbow companies send them to us to use free-of-charge, we also send them back to the crossbow companies after any hunting and testing.
Three trigger releases, with the arrows and field points that came with the crossbow, measured by an RCBS Trigger Pull Meter, and averaged to give one number in pounds.
Three shots fired, measured in decibels by a Vernier sound level meter 6 feet from the crossbow, averaged for one final dB number.
With arrows and points that came with the crossbow, we released three arrows through a Caldwell Ballistic Precision Chronograph and averaged the three to get one number in feet per second (FPS).