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Crossbow Review: Barnett Hyper Raptor

A feature-packed crossbow at a really nice price.

Crossbow Review: Barnett Hyper Raptor

Barnett's budget-friendly Hyper Raptor is comfortable to shoot, packed with high-tech features and shoots 400-grain bolts at speeds up to 410 fps.

Barnett's first North American manufacturing facility was started in 1976, followed by its first U.S. plant in 1980.

The company has produced many firsts in the industry along the way, including the first crank-cocking device, and it continues to forge ahead with new designs, features and attractive price points.

Barnett introduced the all-new Hyper Raptor for 2023 and equipped it with a full complement of features and technologies. The rig is home to a patented Step-Through riser, self-timing Infinity Cams, TriggerTech trigger, Soft-Lok Bristle Bolt Retainer System and much more.

Custom Connection

Much of the overall experience when shooting a crossbow comes down to those few touchpoints the shooter has with the bow — the cheek piece, foregrip, butt stock, grip and trigger. With that in mind, Barnett outfits the Hyper Raptor with a lever-activated, tactical, telescoping butt stock that offers 2 inches of length-of-pull adjustment across five positions. Further, a thick, soft, rubber butt pad with soft-touch diamond texture is coupled with a rubber-wrapped cheek piece to offer comfort. The cheek piece size and position are designed for optimal eye positioning in reference to the scope. A pass-through foregrip is home to the multi-position, rubber wrapped, Verti-Grip palm rest (a front tactical grip that folds up into the foregrip). Molded safety wings sit above the foregrip and are bolted to the rail where they encourage the shooter to keep their digits below the flight deck and out of harm’s way. A tactical pistol grip with front and back rubber inlays sits just behind the large, red-anodized trigger guard.

Trigger Action

Mounted to the top rear of the black-anodized, machined-aluminum rail is a trigger box that is home to several features. First, a Gen 3.5 TriggerTech trigger is advertised to break at 3 pounds, while the Frictionless Release Technology driven by a free-floating roller between the sear and trigger is designed to produce a smoother, lighter trigger pull with zero creep.

Barnett’s ADF (Anti-Dry Fire) System with Nock Sensor prevents the bow from being fired without a bolt properly loaded. An auto-engaging trigger safety requires the shooter to move the generously sized safety lever to the fire position before shooting. A scope mount is bolted to the top of the trigger housing and a patented Soft-Lok Floating Bristle Bolt Retainer is included to consistently position and secure bolts for takeoff. The cocking rope groove at the rear of the trigger box features new Rope Hold Roller Ball technology that keeps the RCD rope in place.

The “Bow” in Crossbow

The Hyper Raptor bow assembly is built on Barnett’s patented Step-Through Riser (STR) that eliminates the need for a typical foot stirrup, making the bow more compact. Rubber bumpers on the STR protect it when placed on the ground. An injection molding process shapes the lightweight composite material into its final form, including limb pocket fixtures, a broadhead clearance scoop and structural support for the new Halo System.

A set of wide-stance split limbs are compression molded from a fiberglass composite that features continuous fibers to eliminate stress points and maximize energy distribution. Limbs team up with the machined aluminum, Self-Timing Infinity Cams to generate bolt speeds advertised to reach 410 fps and 142 foot-pounds of kinetic energy when shooting a 400-grain bolt. The Halo System is supported by, and wrapped around, the back end of the riser where it creates a platform to eliminate cable crossing and aligns cables to cam grooves, thereby eliminating efficiency-robbing torque, cam lean and limb twist. A set of string dampeners are pre-installed on the Halo system. When cocked, the Hyper Raptor’s axle-to-axle width is just more than 7 inches.

What’s in the Box?

The crossbow comes with a 4x36mm illuminated multi-reticle scope; three 20-inch HyperFlite Bolts with fieldpoints; a lightweight, side-mount quick-detach quiver; sled-style rope cocking device; and rail lube.

Range Notes

You will be hard pressed to find another crossbow on the market that can match the Hyper Raptor when it comes to a combination of high-tech features and an affordable price. We also took note of the crossbow’s design — it's one of the smallest and lightest we've tested this year. Measured bolt speed was just a bit under the advertised spec, and shot noise was a little above average. That said, I found the Hyper Raptor comfortable and easy to control and had a positive and enjoyable overall shooting experience.

The Specs

  • Manufacturer: Barnett Crossbows, 800-237-4507;
  • Model: Hyper Raptor
  • Safety Features: Pass-through foregrip, finger reminders, anti-dry fire, Nock Sensor and auto-engaging trigger safety
  • Cam System: Infinity Cams
  • Riser: Step-through, composite
  • Overall Length: 32.5 inches
  • Axle-to-Axle Width: 11.375 inches (at rest); 7.25 inches (cocked)
  • Advertised Weight: 7.1 pounds (crossbow only)
  • String: DF97, 32.875 inches
  • Cables: X-99, 14.375 inches
  • Limbs: Parabolic Raptor Split Limbs
  • Draw Weight: 214 pounds
  • Power Stroke: 14 inches
  • Stock/Forearm: Structural composite, multi-part
  • Finish: Matte gray stock with black-anodized metal components
  • Advertised Speed: 410 fps w/400-grain bolt
  • MSRP: $599.99
  • Comments: Many features and technologies packed into a budget-friendly package!

Speed & Energy

  • Bolt Speed: 387.33 fps (420-grain bolt), 359.67 fps (500-grain bolt), 398 fps (398.6-grain Mfr. bolt)
  • Kinetic Energy: 139.95 ft./lbs. (420-grain bolt), 143.66 ft./lbs. (500-grain bolt), 140.24 ft./lbs. (398.6-grain Mfr. bolt)

    Test Measurements

  • Maximum Width: 15.56 inches (at rest); 11.06 inches (cocked)
  • Overall Length: 32.06 inches
  • Mass Weight: 7.07 pounds (crossbow only); 8.07 pounds (with accessories)
  • Average Trigger Pull: 3.5 pounds
  • Length of Pull: Adjustable from 12.81-14.81 inches, across five positions
  • Average Shot Noise: 110.5 dBA with 420-grain bolt; 103.5 dBA with 500-grain bolt
  • Maximum Shot Deviation at 35 Yards: .875-inch

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