SA Sports Empire Diablo Review – Budget 385 FPS Crossbow

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The Empire Diablo belongs to SA Sports their Empire line. This ultra-narrow gun-like, hard-hitting crossbow has many interesting features and comes at a very generous price.

SA Sports was founded in 2010 by Mark Ambrose, they aimed to be an influential presence in the outdoor sports world. They make excellent hunting gear for very attractive prices without sacrificing the quality of their product. Their motto; “never doubt your gear!”

SA Sports also released two more crossbows this year. The Empire Beast(400 FPS), and their 2020 flagship model the Empire Punisher(420FPS.)

Features of the SA Sports Empire Diablo

SA Sports Empire Diablo
SA Sports Empire Diablo Review – Budget 385 FPS Crossbow 1SA Sports Empire Diablo Review – Budget 385 FPS Crossbow 2
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385 FPS

6.5 lbs

Width Axle-to-Axle (uncocked/cocked):
18" / 15.5"


Power Stroke:

Draw weight:
185 lbs.

Extra Features:
Inverted cam technology, quad limbs, Anti Dry Fire Trigger, integrated Picatinny rail

Package Contents

  • Empire Diablo compound crossbow
  • Quick Detach Quiver
  • 3 Carbon 20” Bolts
  • Adjustable Position Fore Grip
  • 4×32 Multi-Range Scope
  • Rope Cocking Device

First Impressions

The Empire Diablo is a compound crossbow that combines traditional design features with the latest high-tech features. The Empire Diablo is 36” long and has a width of 19” uncocked and a narrow 5.5” cocked. The traditional looking rifle stock looks great, it is made from synthetic material. The barrel is made of the same material and has cutouts to lighten the crossbow. The crossbow is lightweight, it tips the scales at a mere 6.50 lbs.

The crossbow has a precision matched aluminum riser with a 65% let off. It employs inverted cam technology called the Revo Ergomax CNC machined cams. The cams together with a long power stroke design and four narrow limbs produce fast and hard-hitting shots.

The Empire Diablo has an integrated full barrel Picatinny rail, an adjustable Picatinny mount foregrip, and adjustable string stoppers. The crossbow also features a large boot style stirrup.


Speed and Arrows

This Empire Diablo boasts a hefty 185-pound draw weight and it has a long power stroke of 14” that gives the Diablo a lot of short-range knockdown power. We shot with the carbon 20” arrows included in the package. With our chronograph, we measured speeds in the range of 350-385 fps. We tried out a couple of different broadheads. The crossbow is suited to for hunting big game.

Always use suitable crossbow arrows with half-moon nocks!


The Empire Diablo comes with a 4×32 multi reticle scope that is designed to offer you multiple yardage options without having to make adjustments.

The scope on the Empire Diablo crossbow

Assembly and Sighting-In

It does not come pre-assembled so you’ll have to install the crossbow yourself. Assembling the Empire Diablo is easy and takes about 10-20 minutes, depending on how experienced you are installing crossbows.

Start by sighting in your crossbow at the closest yardage you plan to hunt from, using the top cross-hair. Reasonable yardage to get started might be 20 yards, use the top line on the cross-hairs. Once you have zeroed in on the closest range, you will need to progressively move back in yardage in order to determine the remaining yardage points that your scope will be sighted.

Always make sure to properly read the instruction manual! You can find the instruction manual for the Empire Diablo here!


Before you begin to cock the Empire Diablo, mark your string for the center while the bow is uncocked. It is important that you cock the crossbow centered each time. Mark the string on both sides of the flight rail so that you can verify it is cocked straight each shot.

The safety should always be in the “Fire” position before you cock the crossbow, the unit’s safety mechanism makes sure it will go to the safe position once the bow is cocked each time.

The use of the rope cocker reduces the effort required to cock the Empire Diablo by 50%. This device also ensures perfectly straight cocking, a key ingredient of top accuracy.

Trigger and shooting

The trigger is really nice and with almost no creep. The trigger has an auto-fire safety tech that prevents dry firing and an ambidextrous auto-engaging safety switch.

The crossbow is well balanced and it feels comfortable holding it and shooting with it. It took a couple of shots to sight in the scope, when I finally did I was highly accurate over 50 yards.

Always be sure to check if your safety is on, which is the ”safe” position. Once you have confirmed your target. Push the safety forward to the ”Fire” position. The crossbow will now fire when the trigger is pulled. The safety must be disengaged in this manner prior to every shot.


Because this crossbow has a boot-sized foot stirrup, it’s possible to just store the crossbow by its foot stirrup. You can also hang the crossbow by its shoulder sling. However, we highly recommend storing the crossbow in a case. SA Sports doesn’t manufacture crossbow cases right now, so there’s currently no official crossbow case for the Empire Beast. However, you can buy a different case that fits this crossbow. Guide Gear offers a universal crossbow case that fits the SA Sports Empire Beast crossbow.

Pros & Cons

SA Sports Empire Diablo Review – Budget 385 FPS Crossbow 3


  • 375+ fps
  • Lightweight
  • Accurate
  • Cheap
SA Sports Empire Diablo Review – Budget 385 FPS Crossbow 4


  • No official SA Sports crossbow case

Our Verdict

The Empire Diablo is a solid 375fps compound crossbow that will not quickly be matched in value for your hard-earned money. The crossbow blends traditional design with the latest modern technology is very accurate and it has plenty of knockdown power. It is very versatile because it is so lightweight, the crossbow is fit for running and gunning situations. This is definitely one of the best 375 fps budget crossbows available right now. Thank you for reading this review, take good care of the crossbow, and happy hunting!

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