The Bee Stinger Sport Hunter Xtreme vs The Pro Hunter Maxx
We've gotten this question a couple of times, so in this post, we'll quickly describe the differences between the Bee Stinger Sport Hunter Xtreme vs. the Pro Hunter Maxx. While they may seem pretty similar, and both make our list of the top stabilizers on the market, there are actually a few small differences that make them quite different. Let's start with...
What's the Same
They're Adjustable. That's a rare thing in the world of stabilizers, and it may be the factor that sets Bee Stinger stabilizers apart from other models. It's kind of surprising, honestly—it's such a *simple* feature, it's kind of odd that other bow companies that make stabilizers don't make their own adjustable stabilizers.
Both the Xtreme and the Maxx have discs that you can add or remove to the stabilizer and adjust weight of the tool. If you've got a pretty steady aim, you may only need a smaller weight at the end of your stabilizer, but if you've got a lot of wobble in your aim, more weight may suit you.
That add/remove feature creates a little bit of work for you, the archer—you'll need to add them on/take a few shots/jot down your results, and take them off/take a few shots/jot down your results, and do that ad nauseum until you get the results you want, but it gives you the opportunity to find the exact weight you need at the end of your bow.
They Feature SIMS Technology. Both stabilizers feature Bee Stinger's Sims Internal Harmonic Dampener and De-resonator material inside the casing of the stabilizer. That's the other real perk of a Bee Stinger stabilizer: they've got a specially-made material that is designed to dampen vibration and sound. Most lower-tier stabilizers use rubber in their stabilizers and call it a day, but there's actually a lot of R and D that went into the dampening material in both the Xtreme and the Maxx.
Both are "Internal" Dampeners. If you look at some of the most basic stabilizers, you'll see that they're usually pretty simple—they're usually just a piece of rubber shaped into a tube, and sometimes they'll have "fins" coming off them—those fins are external pieces that shake once you release your arrow, and their movement eats up some of the vibration and sound from the draw cycle.
Higher-end stabilizers, like the Sport Hunter Xtreme and the Pro Hunter Maxx, are an "internal" stabilizer. The material that eats up the vibration from your shot—the SIMS tech we just mentioned—is housed inside a casing. That casing is usually made from a carbon alloy, or sometimes an aluminum alloy (as is the case for the Limbsaver Windjammer). Utilizing a casing for the stabilizing material does two things:
1) It maintains the integrity of the material because it shields it from the elements (and it literally vibrates less), and
2) It permits the manufacturer to make the stabilizer longer, thus allowing the stabilizer to provide more balance and heft for the bow. As a rule of thumb, longer stabilizers provide more balance and let you aim better, and that's why you'll see competitive target archers with almost comically-long bow stabilizers.
The Weights Are the Same Diameter. This is actually a really neat design feature, and while it may not help you choose one over the other, it's worth mentioning. The weights on the Xtreme and the Maxx both have the same thread pattern, at 5/16x24 inches, so if you have one or both, you can mix and match as you choose. It's also worth noting that if you want to use more weight discs on the stabilizer—or if you lose a few!—you can get replacement Bee Stinger Pro Hunter Maxx weights.
They Look Pretty Similar. They're manufactured in the same camo and color options: Lost Camo, Mossy Oak Breakup Country, Realtree Xtra, and Matte Black.
Here they are (affiliate links), by the way—the Xtreme:
and the Maxx:
OK, so those are the similarities. Let's look at...
A longer, heavier stabilizer will usually enable you more stability (and therefore accuracy), and it will usually tamper down the bow sounds upon release. With that in mind, here are the differences between the Bee Stinger Sport Hunter Xtreme vs the Pro Hunter Maxx:
They Feature Different Weights. The Sport Hunter Xtreme features 3 x 1-ounce weights, whereas the Pro Hunter Max features a 4-ounce weight, another 4-ounce weight, and a 2-ounce weight.
That means that you can adjust the Xtreme so that it has 1 ounces, 2 ounces, or 3 ounces of weight at the end of it; and
That means that you can adjust the Maxx so that it has 2 ounces, 4 ounces, 6 ounces, 8 ounces, or 10 ounces of weight at the end of it.
So, clearly, you have a lot more adjustability options the with Maxx.
Here's why that's a big deal:
A good stabilizer can allow you to hold the bow more steadily, and it does that through the weight it adds in *front* of the bow. With the extra weight, instead of wobbling a lighter bow over your target, you can hover with great precision over your target—and hopefully put the arrow where you want it. More weight on a stabilizer can translate to more precision, and... well, precision is what you're probably looking for.
Weight is the big one, but there's another big difference:
They Feature Different Lengths. These two stabilizers are manufactured in length ranges, and here's how it plays out:
The Sport Hunter Xtreme is made in 6, 8, and 10-inch lengths; and
The Pro Hunter Maxx is made in 8, 10, and 12-inch lengths.
All things being equal, a longer stabilizer will provide more balance, and allow you more accuracy on long-distance shots.
That said, though—if you're a bowhunter and you're going to be navigating some thick brush, a 12-inch stabilizer may be too much for you—it can be difficult to maneuver through the woods, and if you don't have enough space when you find your game, you may not have the room necessary to take a responsible shot. In that situation, a shorter stabilizer would be a better option.
So, Let's Tie This All Together
Here's the quickest way to describe things: both are excellent stabilizers, but the Sport Hunter Xtreme is Bee Stinger's "mid-range" stabilizer, and the Maxx is their "deluxe" option. Both are great, but the Maxx has a few more perks. Here's how it plays out:
If you find that you don't really need too much help hovering over the target and getting groupings, the Xtreme may be a good choice for you. If you want a little extra heft to help you hover over the target and get groupings, the Maxx may be a good choice. Given that the weight of a stabilizer usually means more aiming steadiness, the Maxx will probably provide you with more accuracy. Again, though—if your groupings are where you want them, you may not need it.
If you're a taller archer and you've got a longer draw length, a longer stabilizer can provide a great counter-balance for your draw. The Maxx, which goes up to 12-inches long, may be a good option.
If you're hunting in very dense brush/thicket, the Xtreme—and in particular, the 6-inch model—may be a great fit, because it can provide some stability, but is less likely to get tangled up in brush when you move around.
Both are fantastic models, and because they're both so adjustable, you can tweak things and hopefully find the right configuration for your shot.
Does that help things? Confuse things? We don't know, but there it is!
By the way, for the Bee Stinger Hunter Xtreme, you can…
…and for the Pro Hunter Maxx, you can…
Good luck, have fun, and happy shooting!