Testing & verdict
I quickly became very fond of the bow sight shooting experience and could see that my groups immediately began to look a lot nicer. You can shoot at very long distances and be pretty accurate. I have shot at 60 metres with it on several occasions and can hold groups of 6-10cm.
Unfortunately, my vision isn’t once what it was which has meant the pins on a regular multi-pin sight tend to blur together, making it straining to use. I was happy to experience that this wasn’t an issue at all with the Gamin Xero. All the usual clutter is gone.
The technical design is very good, its big housing allows for a wide field of view and great light transmission. And along with only a single LED pin and a screen displaying all the information you need, it is a joy to use. These features also mean that the physical design is a bit bulky and heavy. Especially the mount to the bow is very thick. This will make your quiver hang further out from the bow if you have the quiver mounted on top of the bow sight mount.
I was very interested in testing the angle compensation. From small angles to very steep angles. It works great! When making this review, I found that when you exceed around 25 degrees of an angle, the ballistic compensation is beginning to lose some of its accuracy. This issue should now be fixed with a firmware upgrade [v2.73].
Of course, with all things there can be an improvement. I had a few occasions where the display froze and didn’t respond when I pushed different buttons. I could then force it to shut down by holding the power button down for 30 seconds. It restarted right away and then it worked fine again. I am sure that this is also something Garmin can fix, if not already fixed, with a future software update. Taking other Garmin products into account, they are pretty reliable. Whether high tech watches, cameras, sat navs or any other of their products.
The sight needs a better anti-reflective coating. Especially when light falls from behind the archer. I also found the ambient light sensor a bit confused. This sensor on the front of the sight measures incoming light to adjust the brightness of the display. Unfortunately, I found the display to adjust wrong once while target shooting, and once in the hunting blind. But after re-adjusting the brightness through the display menu, it all returned to appropriate levels.
These are the only flaws I’ve been able to find while testing this innovative piece of bow-tech. I’m generally impressed with its sturdiness, precision and thought out functionality. I look forward to gaining more experience with it.
Make sure to see how the bow sight works in action on a hunt. Watch the short film above the article.
In some countries, the use of electronic/digital bow sights is either regulated or entirely prohibited. You should always be aware of the current law and legislation before using this particular kind of bow sight.