Sanlida Dragon X8 bow Review | Enter the Dragon

We now live in a time where high quality archery equipment can be bought at very reasonable, even relatively low prices. For the last couple of years, Sanlida has been at the forefront of bringing high level gear at entry to mid-level prices. Sanlida is spear heading the movement of breaking stereotypes of low priced, low quality equipment from China. They are doing this so well that their high performance, top of the line bows cost the same or less than the mid-level models from other better-known brands.

The Sanlida Dragon X8 is most definitely one of their stereotype breaking models. Although priced at the entry level range of compound bows, make no mistake, the Dragon is far above entry level in its performance, quality, and overall finish. The Dragon has an aluminum riser with what I believe to be Gordon Glass limbs. The cams are CNC machined aluminum with a rotating module system which allows for draw length adjustments without the need for a bow press. A feature perfect for entry level compound bows. Short and compact at 30 inches axle to axle, the Dragon is easy to carry and maneuver making it an ideal hunting or 3D bow. Draw length adjustment ranges from 18 to 31 inches via an easy to use rotating module system. The Dragon’s super wide draw weight adjustment ranges from 10 to 60 pounds making it suitable for any level of shooting and almost any age.

Looking at the Dragon then feeling it in my hands, I could tell this bow is leagues ahead of other bows in its price range. Available in black or Vista camo finishes, like other Sanlida bows, the Dragon has a virtually flawless finish with hardware to match. Like in other Sanlida bows, the machining and casting is clean and almost flawless. I could not find any paint defects or flaws in the machining. Par for the course for Sanlida. The grip on the Dragon is comfortable and has the right thickness. Exactly right for any modern compound bow. Out of the box, the Dragon already has a peep and d loop installed. It also comes with a basic 5 pin hunting sight, hunting damper, wrist sling and the dreaded whisker biscuit rest. Setup can be as simple as bolting on the sights and rest, then roughly aligning the rest and sights. Like many other hunting compounds at this price point, the Dragon only has 1 stabilizer mount.

The Dragon X8 is smooth and easy to draw. Even when cranked all the way in to 60 lbs, the draw cycle feels smooth and light. There is a noticeable valley. In my case, I felt it about an inch or 2 before reaching full draw. The back wall feels pretty solid. Not rock solid like other more expensive bows but not bad at all. Some archers prefer a slight give in the back wall anyway so no real issues here. The bow is rated at 310 fps and it sure feels like it. The shots feel crisp and fast. Appropriate for hunting bows, the Dragon is quiet, almost stealthy. No twangs or rattles. Just a solid feeling shot. Vibrations are almost undiscernible. More so when fitted with stabilizers. With just the hunting damper on, the bow naturally cants to the right. Nothing a good side rod can’t fix. Because of its short length, like many other hunting bows, you will need to work harder to keep the bow steady, specially if you choose not to use a wind breaker or a full stabilizer setup. Overall, this bow is great for what it was designed to do. High velocity, short distance shooting for hunting.

Who is the Sanlida Dragon X8 for? Beginners or hobby shooter who want a high-quality hunting bow at a relatively low price. I wouldn’t recommend it at all as a target bow for adults but for young kids who want to try competitive compound shooting, the black version would be a great option to start with. 

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