If you read the Elite Omnia review my wife and I wrote early this summer, it should have come across as objectively but genuinely glowing in every way.  So, when my Elite Era arrived in June, I wasn’t nearly as excited as I should have been, and had a little resentment towards the bow.  I had shot the Era at Rocky Mountain Specialty Gear when it was first released as part of Elite’s Shootability Challenge and there were only smiles to be had then, but I didn’t want the honeymoon with the Omnia to be interrupted, especially with an upcoming archery elk hunt.  Could a company’s first try at a carbon riser bow really deliver arrows as accurately as I could shoot?

Why the Era?

Elite chose to focus on creating a bow aimed at providing the hunter as much forgiveness, customizable feel, and accuracy as possible, while keeping the bow under 4lbs. The 7 ¼” brace height screams forgiveness and is on the longer side in comparison to most other hunting bows that are around the Era’s axle to axle measurement of 31 ¼” and the IBO rating of 336fps is no slouch.

Just like with the Omnia, the Era is equipped with Elite’s SET Technology (Simplified Exact Tuning), the new for 2023 ¼” adjustable SP cam, LTR cable guard (Linear Tunable Roller), and V2 Micro Mod system that provide an infinite range of draw length and let-off customization.  Performance and Smooth modules are also available.  The gist of all that is silly-easy bow-press-free tuning with customizable fit and feel; for an extensive explanation, please read https://www.rokslide.com/elite-omnia-review/

SET Still Delivers Effortless Tuning

On paper, the Era has all the attributes that a hunter could ask for, but how does it actually perform?  I was dead set on learning if the Era could perform, without loading the bow up with extra weight, stabilizers, or back bars.  I set the Era up with a Hamskea Trinity arrow rest, 8 arrow Quivalizer, and a CBE Trek Pro.  With the rest set for centershot a scoosh shy of ⅞” and the nock height to have the bottom of the shaft another scoosh below the center of the berger hole, tuning was ridiculously easy.

I was able to tune arrows from 380 spine to 250 spine with Cutthroat 3-Blade Broadheads using only the SET system to rotate the limb pockets and effectively move the cams laterally in just a handful of arrows.  Talk about the “easy button” and a huge confidence boost by being able to change arrows and shoot a bullet hole through paper in two or three shots.

That Thing About Lightweight WITH Accuracy

On the range I slowly started to fall in love with the Era after some acquaintance time.  The draw is smooth, there’s no kick or vibration, it is whisper-quiet, and the balance at full draw is a little bit better than the Omnia in my opinion.

In my journey from shooting a much heavier target/hybrid bow, to the Omnia, now to the lightweight Era, there was an off/on adjustment period for me to trust the pin float and smoothly increase my back tension to trigger a release.  My 3D and indoor scores dropped initially as I learned the Era, but I think I ended up a much better archer by the end of summer and my scores returned to what they had been with the Omnia.

One thing that really stuck out to me was that the string angle at full draw seemed to be more like my old target/hybrid bow, and not like the 31-32” bows I had shot in the past.

A few emails between myself and Elite’s, Blake Kidder gave me a solid explanation.  To parse down several paragraphs, Elite’s engineers were able to deliver a string angle equal to or a few degrees more obtuse in comparison to most 35” bows by limiting limb flex and preload, and taking advantage of the SP cam’s size and the Era’s generous brace height.  The notion that longer draw length archers will have a better “fit” with a longer axle-to-axle bow due to string angle doesn’t apply with the Era, and I had a very comfortable and repeatable anchor with my 30 ¼” draw length.

Knowing that I would hunt elk with the Era, I shot it regularly with the Quivalizer in both the traditional side position and out front like a stabilizer, and the Era performed equally as well either way.

SET Is Too Easy Not To Tinker

By the end of August, I was feeling great about the Era, my Cutthroats were sharp, elk were located, and then I got an offer to try a new brand of arrow that was a sister company of Elite, Altra Arrows.  I love to tinker, so of course I said yes… and a few days before the season started I put my confidence in the easy SET tuning of the Era with the .166 Altra Centrum Arrows.  I was back to three blade Cutthroat laser beams and sighted in, well within an hour.


Dreamy In The Mountains

In the field I LOVED the textured, almost bed liner type surface that the Era had and appreciated the balance and lighter weight while carrying it in hand.  My past target/hybrid bow was much longer in ATA and I never carried it strapped to my backpack, but the Era was easy to secure on the back of my pack by routing webbing through the bridged riser design.  The compact size of the Era kept it from getting beat up by limbs or deadfall, and the finish didn’t wear at all.

There were sunny days, rainy days, snowy days, and when the chance came for the Era to send an arrow at a spike elk everything worked just as it should.  After several minutes of jockeying for position with this spike while Cindy and Allan made semi-believable elk sounds behind me, I found myself at full draw for nearly a minute waiting for him to take one more step into a shooting lane steeply uphill from me. The shot was 40 yards on the dot, quartering away, and went right where I had visualized and intended.  The arrow passed through, the spike walked off like nothing happened…then  piled up dead within 25 yards.

My practice with the Quivalizer in the side position paid off, and I think the hunt proved that the Era can deliver in a challenging shot scenario without a stabilizer or added weight.

Easy Accuracy Downrange

Having been out hunting and not shooting for a handful of weeks, I thought it would be a good idea to jump right back into some objective testing while being out of practice.  I dropped by Rocky Mountain Specialty Gear to shoot a 3-spot indoor round and turned in a score of 279 with the Era.  My past efforts from my old Reckoning and the Omnia had been in the high 270s to low 280s.

So, as much as I LOVE the speed the Omnia throws arrows, the Era is unquestionably the easy button and I would go so far as to call it boringly easy.  My results on the 3D range after I got used to the lighter physical weight were similarly effortless.  I was a big fan of the lighter weight while hunting elk, I like the warmth of the carbon riser, I LOVED the silly-simple tuning and forgiveness of the overall design.  From my experiences, I think the Elite Era is a top tier hunting bow choice, and judging from the accolades it has received so far from others in the industry, it will be among the best bows around for at least a few years.

Of course, I really like data, and although not the focus of my time with the Era, I did gather a fair amount of it.

Draw Length Measurements
*All limb stop measurements taken with Mini Mod set at highest let-off hash mark (cable stop hashmark #1)
*All limb stop measurements taken with Mini Mod set at highest let-off hash mark (cable stop hashmark #1)
Velocity Numbers
*All velocity is taken with the cable stop adjusted to the midway point.
*All velocity is taken with the cable stop adjusted to the midway point.

If you are on Colorado’s Front Range, hit up Rocky Mountain Specialty Gear to test drive an Era, otherwise use Elite Archery’s Dealer Locator here.

Comment or ask Kyle questions here.