September 22, 2022
With its new V3X, Mathews Archery has built off 30 years of experience and its incredibly popular V3 platform to introduce a next-level hunting rig.
As bowhunters, we outfit our bows with accessories to help us find success in the field. Rather than concentrate on the bare bow only, Mathews has created harmony across the entire bow setup to develop functionality as a single unit. This focus on the integration of various components brings cohesion and elevates the shooting experience to new heights. The company’s Bridge-Lock Sight Technology, LowPro Quivers and new Stay Afield System (S.A.S.) lead a great cast of technologies and features, so let’s dive in to see how this bow stands out.
Mathews has designed and built some of the most efficient, high performance and popular bows on the planet. While it continues to advance basic bow technology, the company has now invested its considerable capabilities into systems integration by focusing on the entire package, bringing balance and cohesion to all components, as well as the resulting package. The V3X, which is available in 29- and 33-inch axle-to-axle models, is the culmination of this focus, incorporating three decades of bow-building experience, expertise and innovation.
The magic happens when coupling the V3X with Mathews' purpose-built line of new accessories (sold separately). At its heart lies the new Bridge-Lock Sight Technology. Mathews designed a mounting system that allows sights (including its new Bridge-Lock sights) with a dovetail bar to mount directly through the center of the riser structure. This eliminates the need for an external mounted sight bracket, creating a more streamlined, centered and aligned attachment that improves balance and reduces vibration.
With the external sight-mounting bracket eliminated, the company was able to draw the quiver in as tight as possible and the design team went to work. The result is Mathews’ line of LowPro Fixed (6-arrow) and LowPro Detachable (5-arrow) Quivers engineered around the geometry of the V3X, with arrows reportedly 56 percent closer to the riser.
When a bowhunter finally gets time to hit the woods, especially deep in the backcountry, the last thing he or she wants is a mechanical issue ruining the hunt. Mathews designed the S.A.S. to make sure that doesn’t happen. Two posts on each cam — one set closest to the string and the other closest to the cables — work with the S.A.S. "flo-oange" servicing cable to allow you to reduce the bow tension enough to do string and cable work, if needed.
Mathews’ Bridged Riser design is central to the V3X system. Six front-to-back cutouts create the bridging, which is advertised to improve strength while reducing mass weight. Also structurally notable is the riser length relative to the axle-to-axle length.
Mathews’ testing points to the riser length — not axle-to-axle length — as the most critical to creating stability and better aiming. Further promoting alignment and balance is a dovetail mount machined directly into the riser behind the shelf area to accommodate Integrate Rest Technology.
Mathews’ Centerguard Cable Containment System angles down from above the rest mount and places the rollers directly in line with the rest-mounting hole in the center of the bow. This positioning equalizes the cable angle coming off the top and bottom cams and causes the cam mods to hit the cables at the same time for perfect timing and added vane clearance.
3D Damping Technology is designed to reduce vibration in three axes from the point of the grip. Mathews’ testing showed that maximizing the distance of its Harmonic Stabilizer from the grip in all three axes produces the best results. The Nano 740 Harmonic Damper is specifically designed to quell post-shot vibration and noise; the extended position of the damper also adds balance at full draw.
Mathews’ Engage Grip is designed to produce a neutral wrist position, while the three-quarter molded composite material promotes warmth and comfort. The Engage angle, size and contour encourage consistent positioning and pressure without torque.
Mathews powers the V3X with its Crosscentric Cam that essentially has two personalities — the more rounded, circular side creates a smooth draw and easy tuning, while the aggressive side generates speed. Advanced Vectoring System (AVS) Technology increases efficiency as it stores energy on the front end and increases letoff on the back end. A set of heavily pre-loaded split limbs, made with Gordon Composites materials, is selected by base draw weight and can be adjusted with the limb bolts. However, Mathews’ unique SwitchWeight Technology allows the shooter to select peak draw weight in 5-pound increments through the module. Not only the draw weight, but letoffs of 80 or 85 percent and draw lengths from 25.5-30 inches, in half-inch increments, are all mod-specific.
The V3X 29 has an advertised IBO speed rating of 340 fps on a 6-inch brace height. Tophat shims working with Zero-T (zero tolerance) axles allow for custom tuning, and the Silent Connect System (SCS) is attached directly to the pockets and provides a unique and silent attachment fixture for the company’s new bow rope and bow sling.
Outside the typical performance assessments, I would be remiss if I did not mention the “X Factor” the V3X brings, thanks to the integrated platform. I’m not sure how to explain it other than to say it feels as though you are shooting a bare bow even though it is loaded with accessories. The additional components just feel like a part of the bow itself and function as a single unit.
There is nearly zero hand shock or vibration, the shot is notably quiet and the draw is without aggressive changes from start to the solid back wall. Balance is excellent, and follow-through is slow and easy.
- Manufacturer: Mathews Archery, 608-269-2728; mathewsinc.com
- Model: V3X 29
- Riser: Machined aluminum, reflex
- Grip: Engage, molded composite
- Limbs: Past Parallel, split
- Draw Weights: 60, 65, 70 and 75 pounds peak
- Draw Lengths: 25.5-30 inches, in half-inch increments; modular
- Cam System: Crosscentric with SwitchWeight Technology
- Letoff: 80 or 85 percent (advertised); 82.3 percent (as tested)
- String: Zebra, BCY 452X, 62.625 inches
- Cables (x2): Zebra, BCY 452X, 30.0625 inches
- Brace Height: 6 inches
- Axle-to-Axle Length: 29 inches
- Weight: 4.47 pounds (advertised); 4.4 pounds (as tested)
- Finish: Eight camouflage and solid color options.
- Advertised IBO Speed: 340 fps
- MSRP: $1,199
- Comments: High quality, high efficiency and high performance.
Speed & Energy
- Arrow Speed: 305 fps (375-grain arrow), 287 fps (425-grain arrow)
- Kinetic Energy: 77.48 ft./lbs. (375-grain arrow), 77.75 ft./lbs. (425-grain arrow)
- Dynamic Efficiency: 85.2% (375-grain arrow), 85.5% (425-grain arrow)
- Shot Noise: 91.4 dBA (375-grain arrow), 90.7 dBA (425-grain arrow)