PSE Surge Review – a Compound Bow Inspection

Compound Bow

Draw Weight

Draw Length

Brace Height

IBO Speed


AtA Length / Weight

PSE Surge

PSE Surge

See Today's Price on Cabelas

50, 60, 70 lbs.19.5" - 30"7.25"

How To Choose Arrows
320 FPS75%32.5" / 4.3 lbs.

- Outstanding amount of bang for your buck
- Ready-to-Shoot package includes everything you need except arrows
- Quiet and vibration-free
- Very smooth draw cycle
- A bit on the heavy side
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The PSE Surge At a Glance

The PSE Surge was designed to replace the PSE Brute X, which was an absolutely phenomenal compound bow. The Surge is affordable and tunable, but does it stack up to the great review we were able to give the Brute X for a ready-to-shoot compound bow? Let’s take a look.

Bow Package Contents

The Ready-To-Shoot package comes with the following items:

  • The PSE Surge compound bow (riser, limbs, string, eccentric system, cables)
  • Gemini 3-pin sight
  • Whisker Biscuit Rest
  • Flexxtech 3 Stabilizer
  • Shadow Quiver
  • PSE Neoprene Sling
  • Peep Sight
  • Nock Loop

The PSE Surge Eccentric System (cams)

The cams on the PSE Surge are single medium draw cams, and allow the bow to be drawn like pure silk. The draw cycle is soft, without any transitions or lobeover, and reminded me quite a bit of the old EZ draw cams from years ago. The difference, though, is that this bow shoots at speeds EZ draw cams would never dream of, with an IBO speed of 320 FPS to ensure that you get the arrow to your target quickly and efficiently.

Changing Draw Length and Draw Weight

The PSE Surge features tunable limb bolts that turn a full 12 turns (compared to the average compound bow that only allows 4 turns of the limb bolts), which allows you an excellent 30# range of draw weight to allow the Surge to grow with you. You order the bow by its peak weight (for example, 60#), but you really get a 30-60# bow that you can adjust using a 7/32” hex wrench.

Shooting Speed

PSE lists the IBO speed rating of the PSE Surge as 320 FPS. IBO ratings are standardized, and are always conducted with:

  • 350 grain arrows
  • 70 lbs. draw weight
  • 30” draw length

Your real-life speed is likely to be much lower than that, so be sure to check out our article on “What’s Your Bow’s REAL Speed” for a better understanding of what to expect.

Kinetic Energy (KE) of the PSE Surge Compound Bow

The kinetic energy (KE) of any compound bow varies considerably, depending on how your bow is set up, and the Surge is no exception to this. Different arrow weights, draw weights, draw lengths, string accessories, and even the arrow fletching height and length can influence the kinetic energy your can deal out with the bow. For our purposes, we used a 70# PSE Surge with a 29” draw length, and 425 grain arrows. With that setup, you can reasonable expect your arrow to deliver arrows at around 280 FPS with 74 ft. lbs. of kinetic energy at point blank range. You’ll lose 1.5-2.0 ft. lbs. of KE for every 10 yards the arrow travels, so you can expect a 50-yard shot to hit with at least 64 ft. lbs. of kinetic energy.

So, what can you do with that kind of energy? Refer to Easton’s field chart below for the answer:

The Bow’s Draw Cycle

The PSE Surge has a fairly narrow valley, but it isn’t a deal-breaker or even worth noting as a drawback to the bow. The bow is incredibly smooth to draw, and maintains an excellent balance between smoothness and power. For a ready-to-shoot bow at such a low price point, the Surge is probably among the best in its class for the draw cycle and power levels.

Noise Levels and Vibration

I noticed very little vibration or noise with the PSE Surge, and there was almost no hand-shock when shooting the bow. I’ve used the Surge on several deer hunts, and never once saw a deer string jump on me—that’s a pretty clear indication of how quiet the bow shoots.

Using the PSE Surge For Hunting

With the highest settings (70 lbs. draw weight, 29”-30” draw length) and using at least 425-grain arrows, the PSE Surge is more than enough bow for any hunting purposes. It’s powerful enough to take down the toughest game legal for hunting in North America, including the Cape buffalo or grizzly bear. If you’re hunting in Africa, you could even use the Surge to tackle an African elephant.

Limbs, Riser & Grip

The limbs on the PSE Surge are split limbs, as opposed to solid limbs. Even though there’s no inherent advantage to split limbs over solid limbs, the PSE Surge just looks flat-out mean with its split limb technology. The riser is machined aluminum, with an excellent, comfortable Raptor grip. The riser and limbs are quite strong and durable, which means you’ll be able to subject the Surge to normal wear and tear conditions without worries.

Value For the Money

Without a doubt, the PSE Surge delivers exceptional bang for your buck. It is an exceptionally inexpensive compound bow, and delivers benefits and features that more expensive compounds fail to deliver. It includes everything you need to get started except arrows, and is incredibly adjustable to your individual shooting needs.

PSE Surge Compound Bow Review – Summary

Thanks for taking the time to read my review of the PSE Surge. The Surge is an exceptionally good value, and is among the best beginner compounds of 2015. Take a look at Cabelas’ great price on the PSE Surge if you’re interested.

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