I finally got the chance today to get to my Mathews dealer with the intent of trying out the Creed and Chill. He had the Creed, Chill, ZXT, and Ballistic, but only the Creed was set up at that moment to be shot. This is my opinions about these bows.
Creed - The Creed was in all Lost Camo with a 28 inch draw at 60 lbs. It had a D-loop, peep, Mathews Down Force rest and a Spott Hogg sight. At first glance, the bow is visually appealing. Either you like the way the grid lock bows look, or you dont! I happen to like it. It looks a lot better in person, than it does in magazines or over the internet. The bottom cam and top idler wheel is noticeably larger than previous bows, but does not look out of place. It does look like more than a 30 inch ata bow. The limb graphics are cool and blends in well with the Lost Camo look. Even with out a stabilizer, the bow just holds really well and steady in the hand. Very balanced feel. It did not feel top heavy at all. It just sat there comfortably. The wood grip does feel comfortable, but i personally like the feel of the Focus grip better on the Chill. At the first draw, all i can say was wow! At 60 lbs, it was smooth all the way back until i got to the back wall! I normally shoot at 70 lbs, comfortably and confidently, but pulling back 60 on the Creed was like butter. The back wall on this thing that you've heard so much about is no joke! It is that good!!! Solid, solid, solid!!! The creep is very forgiving and manageable and never felt like it wanted to take off on you. It held great and held solid as i put the sight pin on the target. After the release shot. . . all you here is the arrow hitting the target! Absolutely no vibe, no sound. The bow just sat there in my hand, still balanced, and still upright! I shot 5 arrows at 60 lbs, and then had the shop owner crank it up to 70 lbs. The difference is quite noticeable between 60 and 70 lbs. It takes a little more effort of the last 2 inches to get to the back wall, but again, you are pulling more weight. Where as at 60 lbs, it was like nothing and i could pull all the way through very easily. At 70 lbs, i definitely could feel more zipp in the arrow hitting the target. And once more, no vibe, no hand shock! Just rock solid and dead in the hand! I do not know what weight the arrows were either so forgive me on that if any of you had questions concerning that issue.
Chill - Although I did not get to shoot this bow because it was not yet set up, it is one bad ass looking bow! It was in the all black color with blue accents! It is definitely one beautiful looking shooter! Just holding the bow straight out as if to shoot it, it felt comfortable, and felt even better to me in the hand, than the Creed did. Again, I like the feel of the Focus grip better, so this was probably my reasoning for it. With the Focus grip, in my opinion, i could " feel " the bow more. It just felt great! There are perimeter weights in both the top and bottom cams, something the previous Monster series bows dont have. Over all, the Chill is a fantastic looking bow and i look forward to trying it out in the near future.
ZXT - Not too much to say about this one. It was not set up to shoot either. It looks exactly like a ZX7 extreme, but of course with its own 2013 look with the new roller guide look. Even though this bow is only 2 inches shorter than the Creed, it definitely looks that much shorter! I am sure this short axle to axle bow has its fans out there for specific hunting needs, but its not for me.
Ballistic - Again, this bow was not set up to be shot. The bow is very visually appealing with its orange accents against the AT Lost camo. I was, at one point, very ready to go for this bow because of its price point. But after handling the bow again and really looking through it, i think i'll pass. Compared to the Creed and Chill, the feeling of it in your hand is like night and day! It feels un-balanced. The front face of the riser is blocky and doesnt feel comfortable while holding the bow out. The grip is something that is left to be desired. And the composite limb pockets just doesnt do it for me! So you still have to ask your self this question. Is the $500.00 price difference between the Ballistic and Creed and Chill worth it? You pay for what you get, so ultimately it still comes down to personal preference and opinions. To me, and in my own opinion, the Creed and Chill just felt that much better in the hand. The workmanship and materials in the bows does have their differences, and for me, i dont mind paying the extra money for a better quality, and better feeling piece of equipment. For those on a tight budget, the Ballistic is a fantastic bow and a fantastic deal! Will it still kill what you are after? I am sure it will! But i would rather have something that i feel fits me and feels better for me.
In closing my review. Finding that one perfect bow for your self is the best experience one can go through. It is what starts the beginning of an epic journey and adventure for any archery enthusiast and hunter alike. People will always have their own opinions about gear and bows and everything in between. The bottom line, and the final choice will be, and will only be your very own. Do your research, do your home work in finding out all you can about the different bows you are interested in. And go shoot them. Go and handle them. Spend some time with it in your hands. And let the bow choose you and have that over all connection with you. The shop owner will not go home with you after you've made your purchase, neither will your friends who will sway you one way or another. It is all up to you. And at the end of the day, you must feel 100% positive that you've made the right decision. The Creed left me salivating, but until i get the chance to shoot the Chill, my decision will have to wait. Patience is key and spending your hard earned money on an investment such as your archery gear is an awesome experience!