Best Archery Release

If you are shooting off of your fingers, transitioning to an archery release will typically improve your accuracy enough to close an eight-inch group at 40 or 50 yards down to four inches. Increasing your accuracy can also expand your effective hunting range by 10 to 15 yards! However, buying the right archery release for your type of shooting is paramount to achieving the highest accuracy possible.

There are so many archery releases on the market that it may sometimes seem easier to just shoot off your fingers than try to figure out what archery release will be best suited for you. To make matters even more complicated, there are so many online reviews, with various opinions on each product, that it is hard to know what to believe.

There are several factors that must be considered when shopping for a release. These considerations include:

  • The size of the head and if the head swivels.
  • Whether it has caliper jaws or a single hook mechanism.
  • How smooth and quiet the release is during shooting.
  • If it has an adjustable trigger.
  • If the release has a draw length adjustment.
  • How the wrist strap fastens and how comfortable it is at full draw.
  • Whether or not the release folds back out of the way so you can have your shooting hand free to perform other tasks without having to remove the release.

To help you in your decision-making process, following is a brief description of 10 of the best archery releases currently on the market along with the major pros and cons of each one:

Best Archery Release Reviews

1) TruFire Smoke Extreme Archery Release

The TruFire Smoke Extreme archery release is constructed from no-stretch fabric and a high-tinsel aluminum alloy to be both sturdy and light weight. The release has a 3/4-inch length of adjustment, adjusts for right- or left-hand shooters and is easy to put on and take off. The compact jaws, adjustable 360-degree rotating trigger with a dime-sized head and fold-back ring will not get in the way when drawing or releasing the bowstring and frees up your shooting hand for other tasks, like glassing or using a game call.


  • Smooth release for accurate shots.
  • Trigger can be adjusted for a light or heavy touch.
  • Comfortable when worn for extended periods.
  • Made in the United States, in Superior, Wisconsin.


  • Has a tendency to cut through D-loops, usually after about 75 shots.
  • Jaw spring is a little noisy until it gets broken in.

2) TruFire Hardcore Buckle Foldback MAX

The TruFire Hardcore offers a plushly padded camo wrist strap, with rolled edges, for superior comfort and swept back trigger that adjusts from three to 16 ounces of pull for precise and consistent shot release. A full one-inch draw-length adjustment and a pivoting head with 20 degrees of travel insures the trigger will not slip off the serving of loop when lining up your shot. The TruFire Hardcore fits both right- and left-hand shooters.


  • Extra-wide strap distributes pressure evenly.
  • Quick and easy attachment to D-loop.
  • Silky smooth release provides for highly accurate shooting with most users reporting a 30 to 50 percent increase in accuracy.
  • Super easy draw-length adjustment.
  • Made in the USA


  • Some users report the swivel does not turn freely and has resulted in dry fire.
  • Can produce a light “clicking” sound when bow is drawn.

3) TruFire Edge Buckle

The TruFire Edge Buckle is sturdy and compact, dual-caliper release with durable spring-loaded jaws, a dime-sized head and an adjustable-travel trigger. A wide, fold-back padded leather strap provides for extremely comfortable and noiseless one-handed operation. The TruFire Edge Buckle allows you to fully customize the release to fit your shooting style.


  • Easy adjustment of draw length is accomplished by just turning the head.
  • Once set, the length adjustment is locked in place by a set screw.
  • Folds back and out of the way for climbing int a tree stand.
  • Can be fully customized to your shooting style with both trigger travel and draw length adjustments.
  • Made in the USA


  • Leather strap may stretch after extensive use.Leather strap may stretch after extensive use.
  • A few users have reported that the release will not always secure the D-Loop well enough to prevent accidental firing.

4) Scott Archery Caliper Bow Release

The Scott Archery Caliper release is Scott’s original dual-caliper release featuring a knurled trigger for superior grip and a solid swivel connector for superior functionality. The symmetrical design of Scott Archery Caliper release distributes friction evenly that provides for greater versatility when tuning your bow. The dual caliper release provides for a wider adjustment range, allowing for heavier trigger settings.


  • A solid swivel connector rod that offers increased functionality.
  • Provides the consistency of a finger release with the convenience of a thumb release.
  • Covered by Scott Releases "No Questions Asked" guarantee that provides for free repair or replacement.
  • Made in the USA, in New York State.


  • Many user with larger hands have reported the release does not fit them properly.

5) TruFire Edge 4

The TruFire Edge 4 is an inexpensive thumb-style release that has many features found on more expensive units. The TruFire Edge 4 offers a solid CNC machined aluminum handle and head that swivels 360 degrees after being attached to the serving or D-loop. An adjustable trigger and thumb knob with a handle designed for both tournament shooters and archery hunters makes the TruFire Edge 4 a truly versatile release.


  • Handle is streamlined and perfect for both tournament shooters and archery hunters.
  • Adjustable thumb-button release that provides a custom fit on either right- or left-hand shooters.
  • The large thumb trigger is easy to work, even when wearing heavy gloves.
  • Head swivels 360 degrees.
  • Made in the USA, in Superior, Wisconsin.


  • Some users report the release makes a “clicking” noise when the bow is drawn.
  • Thumb trigger is designed to be pulled, not pressed. This may be awkward for some shooters who are used to pressing the trigger.

6) Spot Hogg Wiseguy

A hybrid design, the Spot Hogg Wiseguy merges multiple styles into one release with an adjustable draw length, a self-reloading hook and a forward-trigger design that allows for maximized draw length. With one of the lightest triggers on the market, the Spot Hogg Wiseguy features a highly sensitive, adjustable no-creep trigger. This provides for an extremely clean and crisp arrow release for both archery hunters and tournament shooters.


  • Whether in the field or on the range, the crisp, no-creep trigger provides for tight groups at any distance.
  • The hybrid design combines multiple styles into one highly functional release.
  • Provides an excellent fit for shooters with smaller wrists.
  • The open-jaw design allows for fast D-loop connection.
  • Made in the USA


  • Because of the smaller size of the strap, this release is not suited for shooters with large hands and wrists.
  • The trigger is not equipped with a swivel.

7) Scott Archery Shark

The Scott Archery Shark release is a dual caliper release that offers a solid-swivel connector. It has a highly sensitive, but fully adjustable, forward-positioned trigger that maximizes draw length. The Scott Archery Shark has a patented five-position draw-length adjustment system with adjustments located on the barrel just behind the head. The adjustable wrist strap is made from real leather and attaches with a buckle, not game-spooking Velcro.


  • Forward-positioned trigger can be adjusted for sensitivity.
  • Patented five-position draw-length adjustment system.
  • Knurled trigger prevents the shooter’s finger from slipping.
  • Head swivels a full 360 degrees.
  • Made in the USA


  • The trigger has to be pushed forward manually.
  • The trigger can be a little too sensitive when set to the lightest setting, causing premature firing if the shooter is not extremely careful.

8) Hot Shot Vapor 4

The Hot Shot Vapor 4 archery release sports a full adjustable barrel-style thumb trigger with an automatically closing jaw. The thumb trigger can be easily set up for either right- or left-hand shooters. The Hot Shot Vapor 4 uses a zero-noise activation system so it won’t add extra racket to your shot. The handle is designed to accommodate all four fingers below the thumb trigger.


  • Crisp trigger that can be adjusted for maximum hair-trigger sensitivity and increased accuracy.
  • Super quite release mechanism won’t add to shot noise.
  • Strap has a buckle design for a quieter setup and removal than Velcro.


  • The weight of the release can cause the jaws to fall off a D-loop if left attached to the bowstring when not actually shooting
  • May be a little bulky for tournament shooters.

9) Tru Ball Max Pro Plus 4

The Tru Ball Max Pro Plus 4 archery release offers an easy-open jaw design with a 1/2-inch ergonomic, 360 -degree swivel head and spring-loaded jaws that open and close with a press of the thumb-style trigger. A smaller head provides for increased draw length that results in faster arrow speed. The Max Pro Plus 4 provides both trigger-sensitivity and draw-length adjustments and the handle sports three finger grooves for a secure grip.


  • Completely silent when opening and closing the jaws for loading.
  • Laws stay attached to the bowstring’s D-loop while hanging the bow in a stand or blind.
  • Smaller head increases draw length, and arrow speed.
  • Trigger sensitivity adjustment.
  • Made in USA


  • Some users have reported the jaws prematurely releasing while the bow was being drawn.
  • The trigger sensitivity adjustment screw has a habit of working its way loose.

10) Carter Evolution Release 3

Being activated when trigger resistance is released, the Carter Evolution Release 3 offers a different concept in an archery release. With this type of release, you hold the trigger down while drawing your bow and then let off of the trigger to fire. Ideal for archery tournament shooters and hunting practice, the Carter Evolution release is perfect for teaching archers proper shooting technique.


  • Outstanding at teaching proper shooting form and technique at the range.
  • Adjustable trigger sensitivity, from 12 to 30 pounds, that is supplied by two interchangeable springs.
  • Small, three-finger position handle won’t obstruct vision or anchor point while shooting.


  • Finding the proper anchor point with this release may take some time due to its size and resistance-release design.
  • May require a fair amount of practice to discover the best release weight and learn how to use the release in hunting situations.

Conclusion: Which is the Best Archery Release

Before we give you our top pick for the best all-around release, here is a quick summary of the top 10:

  • The TruFire Smoke Extreme release is convenient to put on and take off, has a 360-degree rotating adjustable trigger, a dime-sized head and fold-back ring that frees up your shooting hand.
  • The TruFire Hardcore MAX offers an adjustable trigger, a comfortable wrist strap and a pivoting head with 20 degrees of travel.
  • The TruFire Edge Buckle offers a dual-caliper release and an adjustable trigger in a sturdy fold-back design.
  • The Scott Archery Caliper release features an adjustable knurled trigger. The symmetrical design distributes friction evenly, providing greater versatility for bow tuning.
  • The TruFire Edge 4 is a thumb-style release made of solid CNC machined aluminum with a 360-degree swivel head and an adjustable trigger.
  • The Spot Hogg Wiseguy merges multiple styles to create a release with an adjustable draw length, a self-reloading hook and an adjustable forward-trigger design for maximized draw length.
  • The Scott Archery Shark dual caliper release offers a solid-swivel connector with a highly sensitive, fully adjustable, forward-positioned trigger and a patented five-position draw-length adjustment system.
  • The Hot Shot Vapor 4 has a fully adjustable thumb trigger with automatically closing jaws and a zero-noise activation system.
  • The Tru Ball Max Pro Plus 4 provides completely silent operation and has a 1/2-inch ergonomic head with spring loaded jaws, a thumb-style adjustable trigger and swivels 360 degrees.
  • The Carter Evolution Release is activated when the adjustable trigger is released, making it ideal for tournament shooters, hunting practice and teaching proper shooting technique.

It should be noted that while some users have reported that some of the releases have a tendency to fire prematurely, our research found that this is usually an issue with having the sensitivity set to low on releases that have a weight-adjustable trigger. Keep that in mind when you are adjusting the sensitivity on your release, least you end up with a bloody nose!

The Winner
Well, really there are two winners. For shooters with smaller hands the Spot Hogg Wiseguy steals the show. It is hybrid thumb-style release with a highly sensitive and adjustable, no-creep trigger that produces a crisp and clean arrow release that hunters as well as target and tournament shooters will fall in love with.

The open-jaw design allows for quick and easy D-loop connection for faster follow up shot in the field. The Spot Hogg Wiseguy would be the clear all-around winner in the archery-release lineup if it was better suited to archers with larger hands. However, this is why the TruFire Edge Buckle makes it to the top of the list as well.

The TruFire Edge Buckle is a great choice for shooters that the Spot Hogg Wiseguy won’t quite fit. The sturdy and compact dime-sized head design and highly durable jaws will stand up to hard use, making it a great choice for hunting. This along with the adjustable trigger and padded leather strap that provides for an extremely comfortable fit make this a great choice for a hunting or target release.

Additionally, both the TruFire Edge Buckle and Spot Hogg Wiseguy are made in the USA, so there won’t ever be any overseas customer-service hassles.

Now that you are armed with the facts, hopefully we have made it a little easier for you to decided on what release to buy. Once you have decided which of the 10 release will work best for you, the only way to see how it will really perform is to pull the trigger and order your release to see how much it improves your accuracy.

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