Compound bows have improved enormously in the last decade or so, but mainly through incremental boosts in efficiencies and relatively modest tweaks to components. It’s been a while since we’ve seen something radically new.

That changed today with the launch of Bowtech’s 2015 flagship, the Prodigy, which has something you’ve never seen before—a gear, a shifter, that lets you turn one bow into three.


Built into the Overdrive Binary cams, the Prodigy’s Powerdics3 is a small, gold-colored gear with three settings. It looks insignificant enough, but it does something pretty remarkable: It allows you to change the bow’s draw force curve.

In position 1, the Prodigy is a speed bow, with an IBO of 343 fps. As you would expect of a speed bow, the draw cycle in this setting is fairly demanding and the valley shallow. At full draw, the arrow wants to go. But if you like a speed bow, you can handle it.

In position 3, the Prodigy is a smooth bow; the draw is even and easy, the valley deep. Of course, the bow is slower. (How much slower we’ve not been told, but I’ll be testing it myself soon.) But if you’re all about smoothness, you don’t care. Naturally, position 2 splits the difference, which is exactly what a lot of guys want.

I’ve been shooting the bow since last Friday and can tell you that the three settings do in fact deliver markedly different shooting experiences, particularly when you go from setting 1 to 3, which transforms the whole character of the bow. Changing the settings is a piece of cake and requires only an Allen wrench (no press needed). You simply remove one screw, loosen two others, adjust the disc, and then tighten everything back up.

The Prodigy has a 7-inch brace height, 32-inch axle-to-axle length, and weighs 4.2 pounds—good all-around hunting specs. Even in the speed setting, the bow is pretty dead in the hand, and mine shot well right out of the box. I slapped on a sight and Whisker Biscuit and took 10 three-shot groups at 30 yard averaging 1.89 inches. I’ve got some more testing to do, but at first glance this innovative new bow works as advertised. If you’re going on a Western hunt and want more speed for flatter shooting, you can have it. If you want a smooth easy draw for in-close whitetails when you get home, just move the disc. If you want to split the middle and leave it that way, no problem. If you want to experiment with different draw-force curves without buying three different bows, you can do that, too. Bottom line, the Prodigy brings a new level of versatility to the compound bow.