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Barnett Droptine Review – Great Crossbow Under $500

Barnett released several new crossbows in 2016, one of them being the Droptine. The Barnett Droptine crossbow was introduced to help round out the crossbow offerings for hunters looking for more than a beginner crossbow, but not spend as much as a top of the line crossbow. 

The Droptine is a good buy if you're looking for a crossbow under $500 (see on Amazon). Barnett discontinued the Brotherhood and essentially re-branded it as the Droptine, but with several enhancements. Intermediate crossbow hunters will find the features plentiful, and the specs are great for the price. I will cover all of those items in detail in this Barnett Droptine review.


Barnett Droptine Review

The Barnett Droptine is essentially a combination of several different crossbow models offered by Barnett. It has the same draw weight as the Whitetail Hunter crossbow, and the same FPS as the Quad Edge S. You might notice it has very similar specs to the Barnett Brotherhood crossbow, and that's because the Droptine crossbow is replacing it.

This Droptine crossbow review covers who should buy this crossbow, how well it shoots,​ what's included in the box, and what I like and dislike.

Barnett Droptine Review

Barnett Droptine Specs

  • 350 FPS
  • 109 lbs of kinetic energy
  • 160 lbs draw weight
  • 13.5" power stroke
  • Weighs 7 pounds
  • 35.75" long
  • 21" wide
  • 19.5" axle to axle

The Barnett Droptine crossbow is the replacement for the Brotherhood, which is why it has almost identical specs.  With 109 pounds of kinetic energy, you can hunt just about any big game you'd like. Shooting at 350 feet per second, you'll be able to land a clean kill shot from 40-50 yards.

Barnett has focused on making their newest crossbow releases lighter weight, and they've succeeded. The Droptine weighs only 7 pounds, allowing you to hunt longer without getting fatigued as easily. The 350 FPS, 109 FPKE, optical scope, and 7 lbs weight makes this a great intermediate crossbow to hunt big game with.


As is standard with Barnett's newest crossbow models, the Droptine features some unique upgrades. The Barnett patent pending bristle retainer holds onto crossbow bolts without the headache of a plastic retainer. A 4x32 optical scope comes standard, and is also multi-reticle for customization. The scope is mounted on a 7/8" PIcatinny rail and can easily be swapped out. A lightweight composite stock allows the weight to stay around 7 pounds.

Droptine Accessories Included In Package

​Besides more kinetic power, the next noticeable upgrade for the Barnett Droptine crossbow is the addition of a cheek rest. The cheek rest will allow you to get into a more comfortable position while aiming and line up the perfect kill shot.

Included with your purchase of the Droptine crossbow is a 4x32 multi-reticle scope, the same one you'll find on many budget Barnett crossbows. This scope will let you hunt comfortably to around 40-50 yards, but there are better scopes on the market if you're not happy with it.

​Barnett includes 3 of their 20" Headhunter arrows with field points with the purchase. The Droptine also has a 3 arrow quiver to hold the Headhunter arrows, and this is attached perpendicular and at the front of the crossbow.

How Well Does The Droptine Shoot

Many of Barnett's low end to mid range crossbows share many similar features, and the Droptine is no different. One unique aspect about the Barnett Droptine is the power stroke is on the shorter range, at only 13.5", yet it still produces 109 foot pounds of kinetic energy. Since it does not have any sound dampening features, this produces a slightly louder shot than similar models.

This crossbow provides slightly more recoil than you might expect. These issues can be fixed by installing dampening kits, which reduce sound and vibration. Without any kind of dampening, you might need to resight your scope often.

The cheek rest is a nice touch to add for shooter comfort.​ There isn't an adjustable buttpad, so you'll want to have the stock tight to your arm. The Droptine's cams are larger than many other models in the same price range. This allows for a smoother shot and also smoother cocking.

Barnett Droptine vs Barnett Brotherhood

The Barnett Droptine is basically a rebranding of the Barnett Brotherhood, which has been discontinued. It has nearly identical specs, but the Droptine includes the Barnett bristle retainer and an improved camo pattern.

Another major difference is the axle to axle length between these two crossbows. The Droptine axle to axle length is 19.5", which is much shorter than the Brotherhood's 26.25" axle to axle. This means the Droptine is significantly skinnier when fully cocked. This is a great upgrade if you need to hunt in tight spaces. The smaller axle to axle also allows for easier movement and better crossbow balance.


  • ​One of the best crossbows under $500
  • Lots of features for the price
  • High FPS
  • High foot pounds of kinetic energy
  • Can humanely take down most big game


  • Louder than many other crossbows
  • Recoil might require you to resight your scope often
  • Some sellers might not include the rope cocking device

Who Should Buy The Barnett Droptine Crossbow

If you're still using a beginner crossbow and looking to upgrade, the Droptine is a good stepping stone. It won't break your piggy bank, but you'll also get a solid crossbow for the money you do spend. It is definitely one of the best crossbows under $500. Barnett is one of the top crossbow manufacturers and produces high quality products.

If you like the Droptine's specs and looks, what are you waiting for? You won't be disappointed with your purchase. When you're ready to upgrade to an even more advanced crossbow, Barnett crossbows do well sold second hand.

If you currently own a Barnett Brotherhood but looking to get a new crossbow, then I recommend you buy the Droptine as it only offers improvements over the Brotherhood.

Recommended Case For Droptine Crossbow

Barnett's soft crossbow case is probably the best case for the Droptine if you're looking to stay on a budget. It is a generic case without too much of a defined shape, and this is to allow the use of the case for many crossbow types and configurations. It has plenty of pockets and zipper storage areas to hold onto many of your hunting accessories.

The best part is the crossbow, case, and your accessories will be around 10 pounds! That is a lightweight, yet very deadly package. You can hunt all weekend without getting fatigued with this crossbow and case combination. Of course you can always opt for a hard case too if you want to toss everything into the back of your truck.

Barnett Droptine Crossbow Review Conclusion

There are many crossbows in the medium price range. While the Barnett Droptine crossbow can appear to be quite similar to others that are cheaper, it's the minor things that add up and are worth the price. The cheek rest will help you take more accurate shots. At 7 pounds, you can be an agile hunter if needed. It comes as a full package, so you're ready to go hunting right away. The Droptine camo is unique and makes it stand out. If this crossbow meets your hunting needs, then I recommend you buy the Droptine crossbow today.

If you have any comments or questions about this Barnett Droptine crossbow review, leave me a note below. I'll gladly answer any questions you have.

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