If you’re into traditional recurve bows then, unless you’ve been living in a remote wilderness without any internet access for several years you’ve probably heard of the Samick Sage. It’s the bow that’s taken the market by storm and outsold everything else due to it’s price, features and general good shootability. Now wait… if you shop at Cabela’s or BassPro however there’s a slight twist they’ve thrown in to keep everyone on their toes. These guys sell something called the Vista Sage. What’s the deal here? How does the Vista Sage fare vs the Samick Sage? Let’s find out.
Vista Sage vs Samick Sage – Features/Specifications
Whilst the Samick Sage is well documented, the lowdown on the Vista can be harder to find. However we managed to dig up these from several websites. See any similarities?
When we looked Cabelas had no stock of the Vista Sage at all and Bass Pro had less availability of draw weights, which again is probably just down to stock.
|Vista Sage||Samick Sage|
|Draw Weights (lbs):||40, 45, 50, 55||25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 55, 60|
|Bow Mass (lbs):||3.4||3.4|
|AMO Length (inches):||62||62|
|Riser:||Dymondwood hard maple, laminated riser||Dymondwood hard maple, laminated riser|
|Shelf:||Cut past center||Cut past center|
|Limbs:||Laminated maple/fiberglass with black coating, reinforced tips||Laminated maple/fiberglass with black coating, reinforced tips|
|Handedness:||Left and right model available||Left and right model available|
So let’s get right down to it.
These two bows are exactly the same thing. The Vista Sage is the Samick Sage.
They’re called different things by the different sellers for reasons to do with brand loyalty, preferential supplier treatment or (most likely) in the interests of garnering a higher price from the consumer. If you normally shop at Cabela’s and are a loyal customer, they’ll call the Samick Sage the Vista Sage and might add a small premium to the price. This might make you think you’re getting something better. However you the consumer however are getting exactly the same product wherever you buy. The only thing you’ll get that’s different is the customer service of your preferred seller.
Even though it’s called the Vista Sage and may say Vista Sage on the delivery note or the receipt there’s no mention of that fact on the actual bow itself.
The badging remains the same for both.If you don’t believe us check out the comments and reviews on the Cabela’s and Bass Pro product pages, or look at this youtube video from someone who’s just purchased a Vista Sage, within the first 30 seconds I think he’ll put you straight!
A Quick Samick Sage Overview
The Sage (Vista or Samick) has a beautiful 2 tone riser with a comfy ergonomic wooden grip. Something nice to hold even when it gets cold out. The riser is cut-past center which allows for a better angle between string and arrow than a riser without a shelf.
The black fiberglass limbs that you attach to the riser come with reinforced limb tips at the end of the limbs, this means you can upgrade the string without fear. This is something you’re going to want to do once you either wear out, break or just find the limits of the supplied Dacron string.
Putting this together is a snap, the limbs attach to the riser with thumb screws. You can take it down and put it together without any tools (except perhaps a stringer).
If you’re a hunter, you’ll most likely want to fit some good string silencers to this to quieten things down as it’s not a silent bow.
What we liked:
- Available as a package
- Wide range of draw weights
- Left and right hand models
- Takedown (Tool free)
- Reinforced limb tips for string upgrades
What we didn’t:
- String upgrade required for experienced archers
That was just a quick lowdown on the Sage, if you want to read our full review look here: Samick Sage Review.
The Top Alternative – Southwest Archery Spyder
This bow was designed by the same engineers as the Samick Sage but isn’t sold by the same company. It’s slightly lighter, has a more polished feel to the riser and a slightly better build quality than the Sage. This bow is also just as good looking and comes available in both 62” and 64” AMO lengths and a wide range of draw weights. Think of this as the Sage v2.
Another plus point here is that the Spyder and the sage are so similar you can interchange limbs between them. The only downside of the Spyder is that you can’t disassemble it without tools as the limb bolts are a flush fit and require an allen key to undo.
You can also get get the Spyder in a ‘ready to shoot’ package. Take a look at our full review here: Spyder Review.
Sill want more choice?
Checkout our recurve bow section where we’ve listed all the bows we’ve reviewed in a handy comparison table.