Barnett Whitetail Hunter II Review
Interested in learning more about this crossbow? You should be, this is another great crossbow from Barnett
The Barnett Whitetail Hunter II is classified as an entry level crossbow. That does not mean however that it performs dismally. On the contrary, it performs beyond expectation at that price range. Although it does not feature the speed of the Raptor Pro or the power of the HyperGhost 425, the Whitetail Hunter II is fashioned like all the other Barnett crossbows featuring the same signature design and shooting dynamics. It is super-easy to operate even for a beginner and will convert you to a seasoned pro in no time. Once you get a hang of things, you can then graduate to the big shooters like the Barnett Predator 430 without a problem.
|Length (with stirrup)||34.25”|
|Axle to Axle||16.125”|
|Speed||350fps (using 380 grain arrow)|
|Kinetic Energy||103 ft. lbs|
|Draw Weight||160 lbs|
Lets Dive In To The Whitetail Hunter 2 Review
There is nothing exceptional or unique about its design as it features the same basic design of a Barnett crossbow. However, it is a bit smaller- measuring just 34.25”L x 18.25”W making it the best crossbow for a beginner who still does not know how to handle or maneuver with a larger crossbow. It is also slightly lighter than an average crossbow at 6.4lbs. and its compact design allows for easy handling on tight spaces like on a treestand. It is clad with the Realtree Xtra Camo color/pattern that I particularly love, as it blends well with the surrounding.
It also features premium crosswire strings that are strong, durable and come with various color accents that further add to the allure of the design. Although it comes pre-assembled, assembling and disassembling is super-easy with the single bolt system. The ambidextrous back handle is also comfortable on both hands and is padded for tight nonslip grip. The custom composite laminated limbs are also uniquely designed to withstand force making them very durable.
How Does The Whitetail Hunter 2 Perform
The most commendable thing about Barnett is that it always produces highly quality crossbows regardless of price or shooting level. Even a low budget, entry level bow like the Whitetail Hunter II keeps you in the game. When it comes to performance, it is definitely one of the best crossbows for beginners. Very few bows in that price range can go toe-to-toe with the Whitetail Hunter II. The only one I can think of is the Killer Instinct Ripper 415, which delivers more power and speed at 415fps speed and 149 ft. lbs. kinetic energy.
The Whitetail is really not that far behind offering 350fps speed, 103 ft. lbs. kinetic energy, 160 lbs. draw weight and 12.5” power stroke, which are enough to deliver an instant blow to any big sized game within a 40 yard mark. It features the top selling Headhunter arrows by Barnett that deliver speed, instant punch and unwavering maneuverability even in windy conditions. These bolts can be used with broadheads for hunts or field points for target shooting. Due to its compressed size it is only compatible with 20” Headhunter arrows.
TriggerTech Frictionless Release Technology
If you have ever used a Barnett crossbow, then you probably know that the highlight of each bow is the trigger system. Barnett does not discriminate against its bows and recently decided to transfer some of the great features of its flagship models back to its budget bows. One of these features is the patent-protected TriggerTech Frictionless Release Technology. This trigger system is unique in its design featuring a free-floating roller that sits between the latch and the sear. The result is a zero creep, no friction, 3 pound trigger that offers both comfort and ease of use. In addition, the TriggerTech assembly also includes nock sensors and anti-dry fire, which prevent dry firing that may either lead to accidents or destruction of the bow string.
Rope Cocking Device Included
Like all the other Barnett crossbow, this one also comes with a rope cocking device making rope snapping easy and fast. Conveniently placed at the side, the rope cocking device slices the already manageable draw weight in half reducing the time and effort needed to cock the rope. The anti-vibration foot stirrup allows you to balance the bow with your foot as you cock back the rope. It is also compatible with crank cocking device just in case the rope cocking device does not work for you. The crank cocking device can reduce the cocking tension by 17 lbs.
The biggest drawback of the Whitetail Hunter II is that it does not come with string dampeners, meaning that it is quite loud during operation. This can be a serious challenge if you are aiming at game from a considerable distance. The noise coupled with the fact that it is not very fast, means that the sound may trigger the target to take flight before the arrow can hit it. This is not a major problem however if the target is less than 40 yards away.
Already mentioned are the nock sensors and anti-dry fire (ADF) trigger system, which prevent dry firing until the arrow is fully loaded. Another safety feature is the Soft-Lok Floating Bristle Arrow Retainer, a patent-protected technology that is unique to Barnett crossbows only. This feature exerts downward pressure on a fully loaded arrow to keep it firmly secured. In addition, it comes with finger safety reminders installed on either side of the rail to alert you to keep your fingers away from danger. The pass-through foregrip serves this purpose of securing your hands from danger perfectly and also helps in stabilizing the bow during operation.
4x32mm Multi-Reticle Scope Included
For more precise shooting, this Whitetail bow also comes with a scope. The 4x32mm multi-reticle features 4X magnification on a 32mm scope and has a five point programmed, multi-reticle crosshair system that picks up the target quickly. It is shock-proof, water resistant and only weighs 12.8 ounces, adding very little to the overall weight of the bow. Although it is non-illuminated and has instances of faint fogging in cold weather, it generally produces clear and crisp images. It works perfectly between 25 and 50 yards.
Although I personally love the side mount quiver, as opposed to the cross-aligned quiver on this crossbow, it works fine nonetheless. My main qualm with this quiver is that it makes it hard to handle the bow on a treestand or in tight spaces, as the alignment of the arrows adds to the breadth of the crossbow. The quiver is lightweight, detachable and can accommodate several arrows at the same time. It comes with two 20” Headhunter arrows to keep you started, you can however purchase separately as many as arrows as you wish.
The Whitetail Hunter II comes with a 7/8” picatinny rails to help you add any accessories that will enhance your hunting experience. You can attach quivers, bipods, optics, lights, vertical fore grips and any other great accessories you want. You can even replace the 4×32 multi-reticle scope, if it is not working well for you for a better one.
The Whitetail Hunter II is A Top Notch Crossbow
The Whitetail Hunter II is a great entry level crossbow that will work wonders for you as a beginner. It is light, compact, and super-easy to handle and operate. However, the main drawback of this crossbow is that it is a bit loud during operation due to absence of string dampeners. It is also a bit slow and not the best when it comes to long-range shooting above 40 yards. Considering the fact that it is very cheap, we can choose to overlook these drawbacks. At that price range, it performs beyond expectations and is definitely among the best entry level crossbows for beginners.
The choice by Barnett to include some of its best features from its flagship models on its budget models ensures that all its crossbows are among the best in all categories. The cheap price of the Whitetail Hunter II may trick you into believing that it is an average performer at best. However, even with 350fps speed and 103 ft. lbs. kinetic energy, it is able to deliver enough punch to secure an instant kill. It may be loud due to absence of string dampeners, but this anomaly can be rectified by purchasing and installing string dampeners to it. Also, the 40 yard range limit is more than enough for a beginner, who is still learning to use the crossbow. The Barnett Whitetail Hunter II will definitely give you bang for your buck and convert you to a seasoned pro in no time. I can’t think of a better bow to recommend to a beginner.