Single Cam vs. Dual Cam Bow: Can You Name the Differences?

When it comes to archery, people use a few different types of bows. One of the significant decisions you must make when choosing a bow is whether you want a single-cam or dual-cam bow. 

Both have pros and cons, so it’s essential to know the difference before deciding. 

Here is a breakdown of the single cam vs. dual cam bow so that you can make the best decision for your needs.

Let’s jump into the details!

What Is A Single Cam Bow?

A single cam bow is a compound bow that utilizes a single wheel or cam to control the bow’s performance. 

Unlike dual cam systems, single cam bows are typically lightweight, easy to use, and have a more traditional, straight-line feel. 

As the name implies, single cam bows have only one wheel or cam, which controls the draw length, draw weight, and let-off of the bow. 

This makes them an ideal choice for novice archers who are just starting and experienced archers who are looking for a reliable yet simple shooting experience.

single cam vs dual cam bow

What Is A Dual Cam Bow?

A dual cam bow is a compound bow that utilizes two cams, or pulleys, to generate power for the arrow. 

The two cams work together to increase the speed and accuracy of the arrow when released, making it a popular choice among archers. 

The cams rotate on the same axle, and the string is attached to both cams. 

When you draw the bow, the cams rotate and pull the string, resulting in a longer draw length. 

This gives the archer more power in their shot and increases accuracy and speed. 

What Is The Difference Between Single Cam vs. Dual Cam Bow?

One of the most important considerations when shopping for a bow is the cam system. Single cam and dual cam systems are the two most common types available. Below is the comparison between the two types in the following specs:


Single cam bows are more accurate due to their basic design. 

The single cam design has a single wheel attached to the bow’s string and cable. 

This wheel enables the bow to deliver consistent accuracy with each shot, which is why bowhunters and target shooters favor single cams. 

Also, dual cam bows consist of two cams attached to the bow’s string and cable. 

This design can allow for more incredible speed and energy when shooting; however, it also means that the shot may not be as accurate as a single cam bow.

Power Draw

Single cam bows typically have a smoother draw cycle compared to their dual cam counterparts, making them more comfortable to use. 

This is because single cams have a single pulley attached to the limb and the string, allowing them to draw and release the string smoothly and evenly. 

On the other hand, dual cam bows have two cams attached to the limb and string, which can cause them to have a “stiffer” feel when drawing the string. 

They also generate more power as the string is drawn and released, providing the user with higher-velocity arrows.


Generally, single cam bows produce less noise and vibration than dual cam bows due to the more straightforward design. 

This is because dual cam bows rely on two cams and strings, which can create more noise and vibration upon the arrow’s release.


Single-cam bows, which feature a single pulley system, offer a smoother draw and more consistent arrow speed, whereas dual-cam bows, which feature two pulleys, can generate more power and higher arrow speeds.


Single cam bows are generally easier to maintain, requiring fewer parts and less frequent tuning and adjustments. Dual cam bows require more frequent tuning and adjustments due to their complex design. 

Back Wall

The back wall, rather than the actual draw speed, relates to how simple it is to pull the bowstring. 

Compound bows with two cams have a superior back wall than those with only one because the other cams make drawing more accessible and convenient.


Single cam bows are typically less expensive than dual cam bows as they require fewer components and are often easier to use. 

Single cam bows have a more straightforward design and are preferred by beginners or those on a budget. 

Dual cam bows are more expensive as they have two cams connected by a cable system and offer incredible speed, consistency, and accuracy. 

Comparison Table

FeaturesSingle CamDual Cam
Power Draw
Back Wall

Which Is Better, Single Cam vs. Dual Cam Bow?

The debate of whether a single cam or dual cam bow is better for bowhunters has existed for some time.

While each type of bow has its advantages and disadvantages, it ultimately comes down to personal preference. 

Let’s take a closer look at a few different archery-related demographics to determine who might want to pay more attention to one than the other.

For Bowhunters

Single cam bows are known for their accuracy and low noise, making them ideal for bowhunters who prioritize precision and stealth. 

Single cams are also known for their smooth draw cycles and light weights. 

On the other hand, dual cam bows offer higher speeds, making them great for bowhunters who prioritize power and distance. 

They also offer more vane clearance and let-off, allowing for better accuracy at longer distances. 

All in all, choosing single cam vs. dual cam bows depends on the bowhunters’ preferences.

For Target Archers

Regarding target archery, the question of whether to choose a single cam or dual cam bow is essential.

Both types of bows have their advantages and disadvantages. Still, dual cam bows are often preferred by target archers due to their smoother and faster arrow travel and more consistent arrow speed, making them ideal for long-distance shooting.

They also tend to be more durable and have higher power draw. Due to these, amateur and professional target archers frequently choose twin cam systems.

For Beginners

Single cam bows are the most popular bow type among beginners, with good reason. 

They tend to be much lighter and easier to maneuver than dual cam bows and are typically less expensive. 

Single cam bows are easier to adjust and maintain since they have fewer parts, making them ideal for beginner archers with little bow maintenance experience.

Read More: Should You Aim High Or Low From Tree Stand? A Straightforward Guide


There are a few key differences between single cam vs. dual cam bows. 

Single cam bows are typically more accurate, less noisy, easier to maintain, and less expensive. In contrast, dual cam bows offer higher power draw, faster speed, and a more substantial back wall.

Single cam bows will be appropriate for beginners, while target archers prefer dual cam bows. Also, bowhunters should consider their purpose in choosing between single cam and dual cam bows.

Thank you for taking the time to pay attention to this post!

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