9 Best Arrow Rests (2023)

best arrow rest for hunting

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Accuracy is greatly affected by the quality of your archery equipment. If you’re going to be an effective bowhunter, having the best arrow rest for your style and setup should be high on your priority list. 

Best Arrow Rest - Top Picks

(Full List Below)

Best Overall

Best Mid-Tier

Best Whisker Style

  • Total Arrow Containment (80°)
  • Full Draw (90°)
  • Drop Away (0°) – full fletching clearance
  • Launcher lock-down after shot for no bounce-back
  • Reduced noise and vibration

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  • Full containment
  • Micro adjustable windage and elevation
  • Laterally adjustable arms
  • Easy installation
  • Laser cut felt for quiet operation

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  • Bristles keep arrows secure doing movement
  • Windage and elevation adjustable
  • Lightweight, all-aluminum design
  • Set-it-and-forget-it simplicity

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Best Arrow Rests - Full List

  • Total Arrow Containment (80°)
  • Full Draw (90°)
  • Drop Away (0°) – full fletching clearance
  • Launcher lock-down after shot for no bounce-back
  • Reduced noise and vibration

With the QAD Ultrarest HDX, your arrow stays fully contained at 80° so it’s ready to be drawn back at a moment’s notice.

You don’t have to worry about your arrow falling off your rest while moving around. 

Once your arrow is released, the launcher locks down so you don’t have to worry about it bouncing back up and hitting your shaft. 

Laser-cut felt keeps this rest quiet and keeps vibration low. This rest doesn’t require a bow press or serving, as it comes with an easy clamp that is super simple to set up, so you can get shooting quickly.

The best arrow rest may be subjective based on personal preference, but there are a lot of bowhunters who would place this rest in the No. 1 spot, and that’s worth noting.

  • Total Arrow Containment
  • Full over-molded containment ring
  • Built-in sound dampening
  • Limb-driven
  • Unconditional Lifetime Warranty

The Trophy Taker Smackdown Lockup is another great option and one of the best arrow rests because it offers full containment and it was built with noise in mind.

It was designed with a built-in noise dampening system, including an over-molded, full containment housing.

It installs at two contact points, keeping it solidly mounted to your bow, and it comes with an unconditional lifetime warranty should anything go wrong.

It offers easy windage block adjustments of .25″ to accommodate 1″ risers. All-in-all, if you’re looking for the best arrow rest for hunting purposes, you can’t go wrong with the Smackdown.

  • Capture Option
  • Adjustable spring tension
  • Ultralight
  • Limb-driven
  • Free floating launcher arm
  • No bow press needed

This compound bow arrow rest from Vapor Trail is a great option with a lot of great features.

It has a free floating launcher arm that raises as you draw back and drops downward as the arrow is released. It’s a really unique design when compared to most other drop away style rests.

It includes a spring tensioner, which offers adjustability for fine-tuning. And probably best of all, because it’s a limb driven rest, you don’t need a bow press to install it.

Take a look at the video below to see it in action.

  • Full containment
  • Micro adjustable windage and elevation
  • Laterally adjustable arms
  • Easy installation
  • Laser cut felt for quiet operation

The best drop away arrow rest should be simple to install, durable, and reliable. I can tell you from experience that the Trophy Ridge Sync MD drop away meets those criteria.

It offers a smooth, reliable release at an affordable price.

I shoot a Trophy Ridge Sync and can say it operates well and is easy to get setup right out of the box. It comes with moleskin to keep noise to a minimum.

The MD version allows for micro-adjustability with regards to both windage and elevation.

The full-containment system means you’re always ready to draw back with confidence. 

This may be the best arrow rest for your setup, but it does require a little archery know-how, as it must be properly timed and served in.

The process is not difficult, but if you aren’t comfortable with working on your own bow, you should leave it to a professional.

If you’re up to the challenge, however, there are a lot of great bow press options that allow you to tie in your rest, as well as perform any other necessary maintenance or repairs.

  • Thumbcock design
  • Rest stays up upon letdown 
  • Ball bearing drive for smooth operation
  • Zero bounce back upon release
  • Full arrow containment
  • Easy installation “football” clip

Ripcord has been a mainstay in archery for a long time, and the Max is a testament to their quality of designs.

With its thumbcock and full-containment design, you’re able to keep your arrow in locked in and ready to draw at a moment’s notice.

There’s nothing worse than making the perfect release, only to have the launcher arms bounce back up and make contact with your arrow, causing it to miss the mark. The Max’s zero-bounce-back design won’t allow for that, giving you increased confidence with every shot.

Installation is made easy with the included “football” clip, keeping you from needing to serve in the cable.

Ripcord is considered by a lot of hunters to be the best arrow rest manufacturer in the industry due to the quality of their products, so the Max should be high on your list as well.

  • Zero Stop technology allows for ultimate repeatability
  • Non-slip compression clamp design
  • Anti-bounce back dampening coil
  • Soft-shell rubber coating for quiet use
  • Universal limb clamp assembly included for easy setup

The Hamskea Hybrid Hunter Procomes was built with micro adjustability at its core. The textured spring knob provides multiple adjusting positions to change the rotation tension of the launcher shaft.

The Zero Tolerance Technology ensures there is no lateral play in the shaft. The launcher shaft rides on two over-sized, sealed stainless steel ball bearings that won’t wear out.

This rest allows for several configurations, depending on your needs – top or bottom limb actuated, cable driven, cable fall away, fixed with tension mode.

It fits split limb or solid limb bows and allows for torsion spring and launcher angle adjustments.

The quality and adjustability of the Hybrid Hunter makes it one of the best arrow rests on the market.

  • Cable-driven rest
  • Built-in noise dampening system
  • Rubber over-molded, steel containment ring
  • Signature launcher bumper for quiet operation
  • Includes arrow guide and limb mounts

Like many drop-away rests, the Trophy Taker X-Treme Pro is cable-actuated, which means it’s going to operate quickly and smoothly with the release of an arrow.

In the woods, being quiet is key, and that’s made possible with the rubber over-molded containment ring. No more clanking your arrow shaft into a metal ring.

Another way this rest keeps noise to a minimum is through its signature Trophy Taker launcher bumper.

This rest has great features, however it does lack the fine-tuning adjustability that some of the others offer.

However, for the money, you can’t beat a drop away rest with the kind of reviews that this one has garnered.

If you’re looking for the best arrow rest, consider the X-Treme Pro.

  • Bristles keep arrows secure doing movement
  • Windage and elevation adjustable
  • Lightweight, all-aluminum design
  • Set-it-and-forget-it simplicity

The Trophy Ridge V Max is a similar design to the Kill Shot whisker biscuit, which simply holds the shaft of the arrow inside the bristles.

The open space between the bristles was designed to hold both small-diameter and large-diameter arrows. 

Though not as adjustable as some of the other rests featured, the V Max does offer windage and elevation adjustments, with the adjustment laser marked for increased accuracy.

If you’re not quite ready for a drop away design, but are looking to try something a little different than your old circle-style whisker biscuit, the Trophy Ridge V Max might be a good bridge to that gap.

The best arrow rest isn’t always a drop away. Simple can be effective, and if you’re looking for something simply, but a little different than the Kill Shot, consider the V Max. 

  • Easiest installation of all rest types
  • Full containment rest
  • No need for bow press or serving
  • Keeps shaft still and silent during movement
  • No mechanical parts to malfunction
  • Set-it-and-forget-it dependability

The Trophy Ridge Kill Shot whisker biscuit is among one of the most popular and novice-friendly rest styles on the market.

It’s the best arrow rest for compound bow users who are simply looking for simplicity.

Its simple design allows for virtually zero maintenance once it is dialed in with initial bow tuning. 

The downside to a whisker biscuit rest is the amount of friction imposed on the shaft and fletching of the arrow, as well its ability to affect accuracy.

However, because the affects on accuracy are seemingly negligible for those who don’t fine tune their bows, as well as their skills, it is still a good option for a large portion of bowhunters and backyard archers alike. 

Best Arrow Rest For Beginners

The best arrow rest for beginners is going to be a whisker biscuit style rest, such as the Kill Shot or V Max shown above.

Drop away arrow rests offer greater accuracy, but they require a little more know-how, especially if you’re going to be working on your own bow, or at least tuning it.

With whisker biscuit style rests, there are no moving parts. You never have to worry about being on a hunt and something coming loose, requiring technical expertise to get back in the hunt.

Because of the simplicity, a whisker biscuit is the best arrow rest for beginners.

Best Arrow Rest For Compound Bow

The best arrow rest for compound bow users is a drop away style rest, such as the QAD above. It might be a cable driven arrow rest or a limb driven arrow rest, but typically, a drop away arrow rest is going to offer the most accuracy and higher arrow speeds.

What is the best arrow rest on the market?

If you’re wondering what is the best arrow rest on the market, you have to take into account not only your personal preference and skill level, but your budget as well.

I believe you can find the best arrow rest for hunting in the QAD Ultra Rest above, but if it’s not in your budget, then maybe the Trophy Ridge Sync is your best.

Best Arrow Rest For Hunting

The best arrow rest for hunting is the Trophy Ridge Sync. I’ve been using it for two years and can say it’s durable, easy to setup, and easy to use.

It’s cable-driven, offers full arrow containment, and stays in the locked up position until the arrow is released. The price point is affordable for any budget.

Different Types Of Arrow Rests

The two main types of arrow rests are the whisker biscuit and the drop away/fall away.

The whisker biscuit is going to have no moving mechanical parts. The arrow shaft will be held in place and launched through bristles that look like very coarse hair. 

There are a few different styles of that rest, but the design is always the same.

The drop away rest – also known as a fall away – has some type of fork holding the shaft of your arrow. As your arrow is released, the rest does just what its name suggests. It drops away.

This alleviates any impedance on the shaft from the rest. Once the rest falls away, there is nothing left to have any physical effect on the flight of the arrow.

For a bow that is tuned properly, a drop away rest gives an arrow the best chance for pin point accuracy.

What Arrow Rest Is Right For Me?

When choosing the best arrow rest for hunting, there needs to be a balance between the quality of the rest and your skillset.

For someone just starting out, simplicity is best while working on the fundamentals of bowhunting and archery.

However, for someone a little further along who is looking to get into drop aways, but still hasn’t reached a high level of accuracy, a mid-tier drop away would be a good choice.

Finally, for the bowhunter who has been refining their skills and is looking to take their accuracy to the next level through an upgrade in gear, a high-quality, higher-cost option would probably be the best choice for them.

It all comes down to where you’re at on your personal bowhunting journey.

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