First Look: Mathews NO CAM HTR

mathews_htr_fMathews unveiled its 2015 bow lineup Wednesday, and the flagship NO CAM HTR was in my hands within hours.

In short, the NO CAM HTR is — hands down — the smoothest-drawing hunting bow I've ever shot, extremely stable on target and quiet upon release.

Here's why:

No Cams?


The key to this bow's performance is all-new NO CAM ST Technology, which uses two circular, concentric string tracks that allow the bowstring to travel at a constant distance from the center of rotation throughout the shot cycle. The first time you look at the NO CAM HTR, you will immediately notice the round wheels riding on the top and bottom axles, along with the two interior wheels for the cables.


In short, there are no traditional cams on this bow, which eliminates the "camming" action you feel when the bowstring transitions from rounded to flat areas. The end result is an extremely smooth draw with literally no discernible transitions; getting the string from brace height to full draw is nearly effortless.

Mathews says NO CAM ST Technology also produces straight, level nock travel for superior accuracy and is extremely efficient, which means that more energy is transferred to the arrow upon release, leaving less leftover energy to create bow noise and vibration.

Other Features

After the NO CAM ST Technology, the next thing you'll notice on the NO CAM HTR is a long, lightly reflexed riser that creates the impression of a rig that is longer than the actual 32-inch axle-to-axle length. Mathews has stayed with its popular GeoGrid riser design here, with the addition of two larger cutouts adjacent to each limb pocket. The riser also has twin Harmonic Stabilizers built in to further combat noise and vibration.


The long riser allows Mathews to use short, rigid quad limbs that are only about a foot long. The limbs reach a position well beyond parallel at full draw, and the configuration of the system creates a very narrow front-to-back profile that makes this bow easy to maneuver.

Finally, the NO CAM HTR riser is home to Mathews' Reverse Assist Roller Guard, which reduced cable friction during the draw and shot, Dead End String Stop to eliminate post-shot string oscillation and noise, and the Focus Grip for optimal hand placement and minimal torque.

The NO CAM HTR weighs 4.3 pounds, has a 6 5/8-inch brace height and can accommodate draw lengths from 24-30 inches, in half-inch increments. It's available in peak draw weights of 50, 60 or 70 pounds and has an adjustable system letoff of 65, 75 or 85 percent. The bow's IBO speed ratings are 330 fps at 65 percent letoff, 325 fps at 75 percent letoff and 321 fps at 85 percent letoff.


Finish options include Lost Camo, Lost Camo OT, Black Anthem, Black Tactical and Stone Tactical. The NO CAM HTR has a base price of $1,099.

Range Impressions

As I mentioned at the outset, the most notable feature about the NO CAM HTR, from a shootability standpoint, is the super-smooth draw cycle. This is not the fastest hunting bow on the market, but you will not struggle to draw it — a feature that will be appreciated by archers with shoulder issues or anyone who prefers smoothness over speed.

After the smooth draw, I'd rank the rock-solid back wall on the NO CAM HTR as my second-favorite aspect. The string comes to a screeching halt at full draw thanks to the Mathews Rock Mods Draw Modules that also allow for letoff customization.

Once anchored at full draw, I find the NO CAM HTR very stable on target, a feature I believe is a result of the long riser and short limbs. I personally prefer a very narrow grip on my bows, so I find the Focus Grip quite comfortable. Upon release, I feel virtually no vibration and only a slight "bump" in my hand. Shot noise is minimal.

Simply by switching my existing sight, rest and stabilizer over from my Creed XS, I was able to set up the NO CAM HTR in about 30 minutes and was shooting two-inch groups at 20 yards in short order. Accuracy was similar at 30 and 40 yards, and because the speeds of the two bows are very similar, I was able to shoot at longer ranges without even adjusting the pin gaps on my sight.

There is no doubt the new NO CAM ST Technology will generate most of the attention for this bow, but it has plenty of other features that should make it a more than capable performer no matter your choice of bowhunting quarry.

Mathews' new NO CAM HTR is extremely easy to draw and stable on target.
Editor Christian Berg was able to shoot sub two-inch groups at 20 yards immediately after setting up the new Mathews NO CAM HTR.
The short, rigid quad limbs on the NO CAM HTR reach well beyond parallel position at full draw, a configuration that helps cancel noise and vibration.
This profile view of the NO CAM ST Technology shows the round wheel and round inner cable wheel. The system produces an extremely smooth draw by allowing the string to travel at a constant distance from the center of rotation throughout the draw cycle.
The GeoGrid riser on the NO CAM HTR features large cutouts adjacent to each limb pocket and dual Harmonic Stabilizers.
The center of the riser on the NO CAM HTR is home to Mathews' Reverse Assist Roller Guard, Focus Grip and Dead End String Stop.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Ravin Broadheads – 3 New Mechanicals

Ravin Broadheads – 3 New Mechanicals

Designed exclusively for their crossbows, Ravin has announced three new mechanical broadheads to maximize penetration and overall performance.

Ravin R29X Crossbow – New for 2020

Ravin R29X Crossbow – New for 2020

The new Ravin R29X Crossbow includes everything you need for blistering speed (450 FPS!) and deadly downrange accuracy (3-inch group at 100 yards).

Bill Winke

Bill Winke's Top Five Bow Shooting Tips

Petersen's Bowhunting Field Editor Bill Winke give us his top five bow shooting tips

First Look: Mathews Vertix Bow

First Look: Mathews Vertix Bow

"Petersen's Bowhunting" editor Christian Berg and Mathews design engineer Mark Hayes talk the smooth, quiet and fast shooting qualities of the new flagship Vertix bow from the Wisconsin bowmaker.

Trending Articles

We Rank 16 Top Models on Sharpness, Accuracy, Penetration & More


It's that time of year when Arrows & Broadheads

2017 Fixed-Blade Broadhead Test

Jon E. Silks - December 12, 2017

We Rank 16 Top Models on Sharpness, Accuracy, Penetration & More It's that time of year...

We've rounded up the best new fixed-blade broadheads from the 2019 ATA Show. Check out our top picks! ATA Show

New Fixed-Blade Broadheads for 2019

Brian Strickland - January 10, 2019

We've rounded up the best new fixed-blade broadheads from the 2019 ATA Show. Check out our top...

Going from field tips to broadheads requires arrow tuning on a higher plane.

 Good broadhead flight How-To

4 Steps to Perfect Broadhead Flight

Bowhunting Online Staff

Going from field tips to broadheads requires arrow tuning on a higher plane. Good...

We've rounded up the best new compound bows at the 2019 ATA Show. Here are our top picks for the year! ATA Show

Best New Bows for 2019

Tony J. Peterson - January 10, 2019

We've rounded up the best new compound bows at the 2019 ATA Show. Here are our top picks for...

See More Trending Articles

More Bows

With speeds up to 340 fps, the Carbon Air Stealth SE is a fast, lightweight rig. Bows

Bow Review: PSE Carbon Air Stealth SE

Jon E. Silks - August 23, 2019

With speeds up to 340 fps, the Carbon Air Stealth SE is a fast, lightweight rig.

Bowtech returns for 2020 with two more flagship rigs. Bows

Bowtech Unveils Its 2020 Revolt & Revolt X

Taylor Pardue - November 12, 2019

Bowtech returns for 2020 with two more flagship rigs.

Gear Testing Editor Jon E. Silks put the 2018 Quest Thrive through all his tests for our new bow review, which can only be found on www.bowhuntingmag.com Bows

Bow Review: Quest Thrive

Jon E. Silks - July 17, 2018

Gear Testing Editor Jon E. Silks put the 2018 Quest Thrive through all his tests for our new...

We put the Xpedition Xcursion 6 to the ultimate technical test. See how it performed! Bows

Bow Review: Xpedition Xcursion 6

Jon E. Silks - November 06, 2018

We put the Xpedition Xcursion 6 to the ultimate technical test. See how it performed!

See More Bows

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.