For hunters and archery enthusiasts researching high-performance crossbows, two brands that consistently rise to the top are Ravin and Excalibur. These two industry leaders deliver cutting-edge crossbow technology tailored for accuracy, power, and convenience.
This in-depth comparison examines how Ravin and Excalibur crossbow models match up in key categories like speed, accuracy, weight, trigger pull, extras, and more. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned veteran, we’ll cover everything you need to know to compare Ravin and Excalibur and determine which crossbow is better suited for your needs and budget.
By the end, you’ll understand the key differences between these two premier crossbow brands and have the insights to confidently select your ideal hard-hitting, dead-on accurate crossbow. Let’s kick things off with a brief brand overview of Ravin and Excalibur.
Ravin Crossbows Overview
Founded in 2012, Ravin brings advanced aerospace engineering to crossbow design. Their patent-pending Helicoil technology and meticulously designed cams, limbs, and assemblies set their crossbows apart for extreme power, accuracy, and durability.
- Helicoil cam system for unmatched downrange accuracy
- Versa-Draw cocking system for easy loading
- 100-yard illuminated scopes with zero friction trigger
- Compact axle-to-axle lengths for maneuverability
- Heavily customizable with accessories
- Ravin R20 – Flagship high-performance hunting model
- Ravin R10 – Compact and versatile beginner-intermediate option
- Ravin R26 – New wider axle-to-axle model for precision
Excalibur Crossbows Overview
Founded in 1983, Excalibur pioneered the modern recurve crossbow. Their recurve limbs and proven technologies offer reliability, power, and accuracy combined with lighter weights than many conventional crossbows.
- Recurve limb precision design for durability and efficiency
- R.E.D.S. suppressors to reduce noise and vibration
- Charger or Crankcocking devices for easy loading
- Dual redundant safeties for security and prevention of misfires
- Diablo arrows are designed specifically to optimize Excalibur bow performance
- Excalibur Matrix Bulldog – Shorter high-powered model
- Excalibur Matrix Grizzly – Versatile recurve crossbow designed for whitetail hunting
- Excalibur Assassin 420 TD – Lightweight and maneuverable beginner recurve option
Now that we’ve introduced the Ravin and Excalibur brands, let’s do a detailed side-by-side comparison of how their crossbow technologies, performance, and features measure up.
Power and Speed
Power and speed are important performance criteria for crossbows. Here is how Ravin and Excalibur compare:
With faster arrow speeds generating more kinetic energy, Ravin crossbows have a clear power and speed advantage for hunters wanting deep downrange penetration. Excalibur makes up ground in other areas but lags in raw power stats.
Accuracy and Repeatability
Delivering tight shot groupings and consistent accuracy is vital to success. Here is how the two brands perform in terms of accuracy:
The Tuned Accuracy Engineering built into Ravin’s Helicoil cam system gives them the edge for downrange consistency, precision scoping, and surgically clean trigger pull. Ravin crossbows achieve tighter groups for pinpoint accuracy during hunts or target practice.
For stealth and avoiding spooking game, quieter shot sounds give hunters an advantage. Here is how noise levels compare between the brands:
- Shot Sound – Ravin crossbows average around 96 dB sound output. Excalibur’s R.E.D.S. string dampeners reduce noise to a whisper-quiet 78 dB.
- Vibration – Excalibur’s recurve limb design virtually eliminates post-shot vibration for minimal noise. Some Ravin models have moderate residual vibration.
- Stealth Accessories – Both offer additional silencing accessories like string stops and specialized arrows to further reduce sound. Excalibur also has an optional battery-powered silent charging system.
With an average of 78 dB at the shot versus 96 dB for Ravin, Excalibur crossbows are clearly quieter and allow stealthier hunting thanks to efficient vibration dampening. For those wanting ruthless silence, Excalibur takes the category.
Weight and Balance
Lugging around excess weight in the field can be exhausting. Here is how the brands compare for portability:
- Total Mass Weight – Ravin crossbows weigh in at 6 to 7 lbs without accessories. Excalibur’s recurves are notably lighter between 5 and 5.5 lbs.
- Balance and Length – Ravin compensates the heavier weight with excellent balance near the pistol grip to feel nimble. Excalibur’s shorter lengths enhance balance.
- Carrying and Transport – Excalibur’s lighter recurve bows carry easier through brush and pack down smaller for transport.
While Ravin crossbows excel at balance, Excalibur’s significant weight reductions with their efficient recurve limb designs make them the clear winner for portable hunting. The lighter models are less fatiguing over long treks.
Ease of Use
For hunters of all skill levels, the ability to cock, load, and fire the crossbow easily and confidently is important. Here is how usability compares:
- Cocking Effort – Ravin’s Versa-Draw integrated cocking system cocks easily with a crank or rings. Excalibur’s CrankCocking device similarly eases physical cocking.
- Loading – Both feature straight loading channels between cams/limbs for smoother loading. Ravin’s enclosed design offers more finger protection.
- Safety – Each model includes dual redundant safeties and anti-dry fire triggers for added security. Excalibur offers more safety colors.
- Ergonomics – Ravin offers adjustable stock and foregrip for fit customization. Excalibur provides interchangeable pistol grip options.
For ease of handling, use, safety, and fit adjustment, Ravin and Excalibur are evenly matched, both utilizing technologies to simplify shooting for beginners or experienced hunters alike.
The ideal application for each crossbow comes down to intended hunting use:
- Big Game – Ravin’s blistering speeds and knockdown power make their crossbows ideal for trophy elk, moose, deer, bear and other big game where downrange energy matters.
- Treestands – Excalibur’s compact recurves are perfect for hunting whitetail from blind or treestand thanks to the short axle-to-axle length.
- Stalking – The lightweight Excalibur models excel for spot and stalk hunting of game like antelope or mountain goats over long distances.
- Dangerous Game – For large predators, Ravin’s penetration power gives peace of mind if large dangerous game is encountered.
Ravin better suits large dangerous game and open terrain hunting where power matters. Excalibur excels for treestand whitetail ambush hunting or backcountry stalking thanks to their maneuverable compact size.
With similar premium quality and technology, Ravin commands a price premium over Excalibur:
- Base Model Price – Ravin crossbows start around $1,100. Excalibur entry-level prices are approximately $900.
- Fully Decked Out – Fully accessorized Ravin models end up $1,700+. Excalibur equivalents cost closer to $1,300+.
- Budget Options – Excalibur’s lower-priced Matrix line hits $600 price points. Ravin lacks budget variants.
For budget hunters or price-conscious shoppers, Excalibur offers great performance at lower cost brackets. Ravin buyers pay more for the advantage in blistering arrow speed and kinetic power.
Customer Service and Warranty
Both companies back their bows with strong customer service and warranties:
- Warranty – Ravin offers a 1 year limited warranty. Excalibur provides a lifetime limited warranty.
- Service – Ravin’s customer service garners rave reviews for solving issues quickly. Excalibur also draws high marks for knowledgeable support.
- Tuning – Both brands will help you properly tune and maintain your crossbow to keep it shooting accurately.
For supporting products after purchase with tuning help and addressing problems, Ravin and Excalibur both provide exemplary customer service experience and responsive warranties.
Overall Winner: Tie
In head to head comparisons, each brand has strengths that will appeal to different shooters:
Ultimately there is no universally superior crossbow brand. Your specific hunting application and preferences will steer you toward the ideal choice between offerings from Ravin and Excalibur.
Bottom Line Recommendations
Based on expertise and experience testing both brands extensively, here are my summarized recommendations:
- For big game or long-range accuracy – Pick Ravin for the power and precision.
- For affordability and lightweight carrying – Choose Excalibur for the value and transportability.
- For hunting from blinds or treestands – Excalibur’s maneuverable compact size excels here.
- For making very long stalks – Excalibur’s lighter weights prevail.
- For extreme stealth – Excalibur’s whisper quietness makes the difference.
- For combo of power and precision – Either brand serves you well.
You’ll be equipped for successful hunting with either Ravin or Excalibur crossbows. Let your specific needs and preferences guide you toward the right choice to match your hunting style.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Is Ravin better than Excalibur?
A: There is no definitively “better” brand. Ravin excels in power while Excalibur wins in light weight and pricing. Choose based on your hunting needs.
Q: Is Excalibur better than Ravin?
A: Again there is no clear “better” overall. Excalibur offers quieter shots and more budget options. But Ravin beats them in kinetic energy.
Q: Why are Ravin crossbows so expensive?
A: You pay for the superior downrange accuracy, blistering arrow speed, and advanced technology Ravin crossbows deliver. Their engineering is a cut above.
Q: How accurate are Excalibur crossbows?
A: Excalibur crossbows achieve excellent 2-3 inch groups at 100 yards when properly tuned. Their recurve limbs provide consistent precision.
Q: Which shoots faster – Ravin or Excalibur?
A: Ravin crossbows shoot arrows at significantly faster speeds, averaging 420-430 FPS versus 360 FPS for Excalibur.
Q: Which is better for hunting – Ravin or Excalibur?
A: It depends on your specific hunting application. Ravin suits open terrain and Excalibur excels in thick cover. Consider range and mobility needs.
Both Ravin and Excalibur produce excellent hunting crossbows using cutting-edge technologies and precision manufacturing. This comparison guide outlines the key strengths of each brand to help you determine which best suits your budget, hunting style, and needs.
With a better understanding of how Ravin and Excalibur crossbows differ, you can confidently invest in a high-performance crossbow optimized for your target shooting or hunting purposes. Both brands produce consistent accuracy, power, and dependability – you choose which advantages align with your priorities.
The authority and expertise provided in this guide take the guesswork out of choosing between Ravin and Excalibur. Ultimately, you have two superb crossbow options and the knowledge to pick the ideal one to take your shooting to the next level!