I'm no expert on rowing machines but considering the cost I had to do my homework before making a decision as to what one to purchase. I looked at cheaper and even one feature of a TV show that I was seriously considering that had the hydro system and was made of wood. In the end I believed that this one was the better choice. First, the Elites extra height is well worth the extra cost. The next thing on my mind was, air or water. The drawback with water is it can leak and require some maintenance. My concern with noise had me wondering which one would be the winner. I don't own that other water rower but I can say this one is smooth and much quieter than expected and doesn't creat any problems in our household. I was concern about wood wearing or being made from wood stock that was not as strong or straight (warping from new growth wood) but since this rower is metal I have nothing to worry about there. The next thing that concern me was the difference in material that was used in the pulley system, one was made from synthetic webbing which could have been nylon to polyester which is the stronger. This rower uses a chain and is much heavier duty. In the TV show as the frustrated character rows really hard the strap breaks. I don't believe that will happen with this rowers chain and maybe that is why you don't see wooden rowers in gyms. The assembly was easy and you can find the right video on their site to do what you need, even disassembling it, something you might want to do when moving. This rower separates into two long sections for storage but I wouldn't want to be doing that too often, maybe during a holiday. The reason is this rower is big and when they say to allocate 9 feet for length, believe them. You can get away with less in the width in my opinion. Because of the length I had few places to set it up, the garage was out of the question. This is too good a machine for that and besides things tend to be forgotten more when out of site. In the end I had only one place that made sense but which most people would not consider, my living room. I had a person come in and remark about the size and probably hold his tongue until he got home about having it where I put it but that doesn't bother me since I am not spending this much money for a piece of furniture. The goal for me is health and being able to control my sugar and muscle levels better as I grow older. I have used other exercise equipment before but this is the best for me because it gets use almost daily by me and other family members. After using for six months now I can honestly say I look forward to it and haven't felt better. My body is thanking me everyday and the only regrets is not purchasing one much earlier in my life. I use this as a supplement to bicycling which doesn't exercise many of my muscles and because it rains much where I live. In this way I am able to keep up exercising no matter what the weather is. I work from home and getting some form of exercise whiteout having to leave house is what works for me. Yes it was an investment but considering the cost of not exercising and the effects it has on your heath, I would do it again and again, if I had to.
I'm an above knee amputee. Turns out that rowing tears up the skin on my stump. But I called Concept 2 and spoke with a guy who told me what to do (row without my prosthetic leg). He even referred me to you tube videos of amputees rowing. I followed his advice and got a great workout! This is going to be a great form of exercise for me.
Anyone who is interested in indoor rowing should go to Concept 2's website. They have a wealth of information!
Excellent product. Appreciate the 20" seat height which helps those with limited ability to sit down lower on other machines. However, considering that I bought this machine because of its 20" seat height, it would be nice if the company realized that those individuals that require assistance getting on and off of the machine, would have designed some sort of handle to use when you mount our dismount the machine. I am 6'1" and even I have to swing my leg over the seat to sit and then get off. Without some sort of handle to grab onto when sitting or getting off, you can easily catch your leg on the seat/frame and potentially falling. I try fyi grab onto the frame holding the screen but it's not easy. Please consider adding a small handle to help those get on or off.
I am not a competitive rower, just an average woman over 50 who likes to keep in shape. I bought my rower about a year ago. I have no doubt this rower is going to last for many years to come. I put this together myself and it was not too difficult. It does not move around or shake at all. It is extremely solid and well built. I do not have it on a mat. Mine is on carpet. The machine is very long, so you will need space. Approximately 8 feet long and 2 feet wide. I do not "store" the machine. It is always fully laid out and ready to use. I think it would be difficult to take it apart and store, but I also have not tried this. I have put about 400,000 meters on the rower and it is running like new. I have not done any maintenance or had one problem with the machine. I am just taking the time to learn all the things you can do with the PM5 and the on-line community. I do like that you can compete with people all over the world and see how you rank. It does make it more interesting and if you are a competitive person, it will push you to do better. If you are buying this for fancy, dazzling electronics, this is not for you. This is a solid piece of gym equipment that should probably last you a lifetime, but there are no fancy screens or electronics. I bought the Model E because it is higher off the ground. Easier to get on and off. The extra $215 was well worth the ease of getting on and off the machine. I bought a pad for the seat of the rowing machine. The rowing machine seat cushion that I bought is the Model 2 by 2K Fit which cost approximately $40. It is cushy, but does move around a little while you row. You will most likely need a cushion and this one does work well. I love my rowing machine and after a year, I would purchase the machine all over again.
Amazing machine. Quiet, smooth, and easy to use. Fitness monitor is large and easy to read. The workout is great and I do not seem to have some of the after-effects from other regimens such as jogging or aerobic routines. I am older so the "E" version is better for me because it is easier to mount/dismount. It is a bit on the expensive side - $1200, but this thing should last for years. Over the years, I have purchased many pieces of exercise equipment and buying the higher-quality definitely pays off in the long run.
What an amazing machine!! I had been using the Concept II model D in a gym and decided I needed one for my home. After reading the reviews and thinking about the long term use of the rower I decided to spend an extra $200.00 and buy the model E. I am glad I purchased the model E but quality wise I am sure the model D is equal. Here’s my impression of this incredible machine.
1. I ordered from Amazon on a Saturday and received it the following Tuesday with Monday being a holiday. So- Free two business day Shipping in a box that weighed 100 pounds. I still cant believe or understand how Amazon does it.
2. The machine arrived in perfect condition, was extremely well packaged with clear, easy, to understand assembly instructions. Total time to unpack, assemble and start rowimg was around 30 minutes. I did not rush and read all the instructions. There were 8 threaded bolts needed to assemble with an included star wrench. Piece of cake.
3. What I love about this machine. The quality is workmanship is unquestionably some of the finest I have seen. I am an artist and have a pretty critical eye for details. This piece of work is flawless from the welds, to heavy duty lock-tite coated bolts that will never come loose. The fit and finish and paint looks like that done on high-end car.. I would call ot the Mercedes of rowing machines. It is substantially solid with no wiggles, squeaky parts, or give anywhere. The chain is super smooth and quiet with adjustable resistance and built to last. The seat is very comfortable without a pad even though it is a composite material. It slides on the rail with absolutely no Resistance. The straps for your feet are adjustable up and down with inserts that cup your shoes. I actually tried it with sandles at first without tightening the straps and my feet stayed in place. This is one problem I had with an older model D but I am sure it has been upgraded. The handle grip is very comfortable with enough mass to prevent hand cramps. I ride a motorcyle and small grips do cause cramps. The machine turbine is smooth and quiet. The electronic display is easy to use and very adaptable.
4. The machine does have a large foot print which is a consideration if you live in a small apartment or house. Make sure you have the 9 x4 foot area. The machine can be separated in about 5 seconds for storage. Nice. I had no trouble admusting the electronic monitor. It does adjust up and down to suit your taste. I am sure I left something out but covered in other reviews. I cannot believe concept can sell these machines for the price and still make a profit. For the money you cant find a better machine and I doubt you could find one of such quality double the price.
I got the E model because at 80 and 74 for my wife getting on and off is easier. It is very well built and a pleasure to use. I put the tractor seat on it this worked well for us. While simple to use it is important to use correctly to prevent injuries if you don’t have access to a good trainer there are hundreds if not thousands of very good videos on how to do it. It is very common to see people using it incorrectly. Practice the correct form and you will get much better results
Im 604 and was concerned about how these machines would fit me till I found this model reviewed on youtube by someone who is 605. The machine was simple to put together thanks to the youtube video and so far it works awesome. It is very smooth and would easily fit someone who is 606. Some complaints I read about the hard seat...it is a little hard but I don't seam to have any issues with it and you can put padding on it if needed. I did have a minor issue with assembly, 2 screw holes did not line up quite right so I took the provided screwdriver and wiggled it in the holes to widen them out a bit and it worked, The screen display is real nice and easy to use. It does take up a lot of room but that is to be expected with any row machine. I have no regrets purchasing it and look forward to using it several times a week to. I would definitely recommend this. Just 3 minutes and I really feel the workout. I have a treadmill, helix machine and elliptical, all great high quality machines that provide great workouts but I can say that this row machine kicks my but much more in a shorter time than the other machines.
I purchased the Concept 2 Model E. I read it sits higher than the Model D so I'm actually very happy I chose this over the Model D because I really like this being higher up. This product is 1) Easy to put together - It took me about 40 minutes working real slow. Instructions could be better but it was still pretty easy 2) It works as advertised 3) I've used it for about 3 weeks daily and it's still working great. I will update later on durability. So this is the product description part of review.
I used it for 3 weeks straight and while it looks simple and the workout seems easy and low intensity, I actually felt sore in places I didn't think this would work out like my thighs and gluts. Use proper form and the faster you go the more resistance you will get. It gave me a great work out each time.
I give this 5-stars and strongly do so because after 3 weeks of use I have slightly better endurance when I play basketball and also I've had a lingering lower back pain that wouldn't go away for years and years. I've been to chiropractors, physical therapists, etc., and while the PT was very useful it didn't work as well as this machine did for me. There is still some discomfort but it's so much more manageable to the point I often don't even realize there is any pain at all.
Now let's be clear, I'm not advocating its use for medical purposes or anything like that, I'm only speaking to my own personal experience. While I count my blessing that it worked well for me, it may or may not be other people's experience.
Updating my review to 5 stars after workouts but leaving my first unboxing 3 star impressions intact. After all it’s about the workout. I still think the seat can be improved but I bought an aftermarket cushion that has made the workouts much more comfortable. The footrests do the job but still meh in plastic quality. I still think there are some cheaper inconspicuous plastics but overall the build quality will last a very long time and what are important parts like the chain, handle, monitor arm, stanchions and track are very high quality but I wasn’t happy about some scratches on the stainless track out of the box.
The workout is 5 stars but you must focus on the proper rowing technique to benefit and this makes the workout more interesting and interactive because you have to concentrate on every pull. The catch is a little light early but the drive and finish is very smooth and linear. The machine is no louder than a room fan so I don’t understand all the online comments about “loudness”. Certainly it’s not louder than a treadmill or stationary bike. The PM5 monitor though not flashy is very responsive and interactive to your technique and provides a vast array of feedback like watts, cals, splits and expected finish. It’s all you need.
I think the C2 is a better choice on paper than the competing WaterRower though I have never tried the latter. Having to purify water in a plastic container and a wood frame though aesthetically more appealing at first is subject to temp and humidity conditions on tightness of fittings over time. I think this combination of water and wood becomes a problem over time. Last word, rowing is the best indoor workout and I’ve have them all all, treadmills, bikes and ellipticals. Remember this isn’t a weight machine that’s all about resistance and no pain no gain. Indoor rowing is all about technique and that’s the workout. The C2 website has great instructional videos.
Original 3 star Unboxing review intact:
I will update this review after some actual use. I purchased the Model E as my research showed undoubtedly that the C2 Model D/E are the leaders in the indoor rower field. I purchased the E for seat height and expecting a little higher build quality than the D. I ordered via Amazon vs C2 direct to control delivery time with scheduled delivery vs UPS leaving it in my driveway whenever they get here. The truck firm was a bit of a challenge to communicate with. But they were friendly, it arrived when they said it would and the box was in good condition. It was well packed and protected.
I have higher end home exercise equipment in a bike, treadmill, and elliptical so I have a standard for “commercial grade”. I think the quality of the unit is a bit oversold in the marketing materials. The E is basically spray painted steel. I have no idea what “high gloss” finish C2 is talking about. It’s as matte as can be. The steel gauge is ok, but not as substantial as I expected vs other equipment I have. Rather thin but the positive is it’s lighter to move around. There is a lot of hard plastic including the fan cover so do not over tighten screws when installing the monitor or there will be a crack in your future. The seat is rather flimsy, rickety and shakey side to side. It has some give in the cushion but not a lot. Just not a solid I’m locked in feeling. If I had to guess what part of this machine was made in China, it’s the seat. The footrests are rickety and rather cheap plastic but I suppose functional enough. One foot strap was twisted under the footrest cover and I had to take the cover off and untwist it. Note to C2 plastic snaps like on dog collars are around for decades so you don’t have unstrap and restrap for every workout. One fan cover screw was loose almost to the point of falling off. The stainless steel monorail was surface scratched and scuffed in an area but not enough for me to ever imagine reboxing this for a return and I don’t believe it will affect the glide. You would think C2 would protect and quality inspect the most expensive part of this machine, the stainless steel monorail. Overall at least minus 1 star as the build quality was not what I expected. Kind of a lot of hard plastic rickety parts is the best I can explain it.
I’ve read about easy assembly and it’s only 8 screws. I’ve assembled many complex things. This isn’t the hardest by far but it wasn’t the easiest. First it’s more than 8 screws. The instructions are awful. There’s a pretty good You Tube video out there. Instructions are only pictures and no words and what seems like 20 languages. Took about a half hour by myself. The good news is it’s one screwdriver for all the bolts. Minus 1 star on the bad instructions, but this not something you’d need to pay someone to do. The less mechanically or physically challenged would find it a lot easier with a buddy to hold things that need to be screwed.
The PM5 monitor though I only checked that it turned on with a couple of rows seems very simple with a gray black display, yet most reviews say this is the best or the others are so much worse. I suppose rowers need to catch up with treadmill and bike displays for reasons I don’t understand. It tells you what you need however in numbers.
Some You Tube reviews say the machine is loud. It is not loud at all. It’s a quiet breeze sound and an AC or a room fan will be louder.
This is my first indoor rower, though I’ve used many club rowers, none of them C2. I will update this review if the workout quality ups it a star or two. The first 30 minute workout I had just to test the machine was very smooth. So without a lot of workout experience yet, this machine has left me a little underwhelmed in build quality vs the hype. I don’t intend to abuse it and I expect it will far outlive me....but it’s just that parts feeling we all have had when you’re putting something together and you say, oh this part is “blank”. The seat and the footrests are unforgivable cheap quality at this price point.