Life Fitness Elevation Series Elliptical Review (95X)

There are always those who are seeking for the most professional exercise equipment that they can acquire. For those who are looking in the realm of ellipticals, they would be hard-pressed to find gear that is more professional than the Elevation Series Elliptical from Life Fitness. Also known as the Life Fitness 95X, this is an extremely expensive elliptical, but you are also getting one of the most professional and quality options on the market.

In our Life Fitness Elevation Series Elliptical review today, we’re going to look at all the elements that make this machine work and see the ones that don’t. Once we’ve covered all of the aspects of the machine itself, we’ll give a list of pros and cons before finishing with our summation of the machine. Then it is up to you to decide whether or not it is worth the investment. So with all of that out of the way, let’s hop right into our Life Fitness Elevation Series Elliptical!

Life Fitness Elevation Elliptical Machine Review:

Life Fitness Elevation Machine Specifications:

It only makes sense to start with the physical elements of the Elevation Series Elliptical. Perhaps the first thing that you should note about this elliptical is that it is extremely large and extraordinarily heavy. For those with small homes, you will want to do some serious planning to make sure where this machine is going to go, as you won’t be moving it around often, if ever. It measures to be 65 inches (165 cm) long, 30.7 inches (78 cm) wide and 88.1 inches (223.8 cm) tall. The Elevation Series Elliptical weighs a mighty 459 lbs (208.2 kg), which is even more than it’s maximum weight limit of 400 lbs (181.4 kg).

You won’t find too many customization or colouring options here. The majority of the elliptical is black and that’s the end of the discussion. You do have the choice between having “Arctic Silver” highlights, “Black Onyx” highlights, “Diamond White” highlights and “Titanium Storm” highlights. The difference between them certainly isn’t major and they all achieve a general black and white (or just black) style. This is the extent of the customization (in terms of aesthetic) that you get with the Elevation Series Elliptical.

Life Fitness Elevation Series Trainer Monitor:

One of the most interesting elements about the Life Fitness Elevation Series Elliptical monitor is that you have a choice for which sort of monitor you want for it. The two choices of consoles that you have for this elliptical are the Discover SE3 HD Console and the Discover ST Console. Both consoles are available in 22 levels, which is quite nice in terms of adaptability. Both also have around 21 workouts, including custom workouts, interactive courses and interval runs. They also display 17 statistics like speed, heart rate, time, distance and calories to name a few.

The Discover SE3 HD console is a 16 inch high-definition touch-screen that can connect to a wide variety of Bluetooth devices. You can access Netflix, Hulu Plus, ESPN, YouTube, Pandora, the BBC and a heck of a lot more on this console. You can even play games like chess and solitaire on this tablet. There is an ever-growing library of On Demand instructor workouts, with Smartwatch compatibility.

On the other hand, the Discover ST Console. This is still an excellent console, although you don’t get the same sort of advanced On Demand features. There’s no games or apps, as well as no connection available with Smartwatches. However, there are still interactive terrain courses available for your workouts, as well as entertainment from integrated TVs. Regardless of which console you picked, these are fantastic consoles that outclass a large number of others. This might just be the highlight of the entire elliptical.

Life Fitness Elevation Series’ Drive and Resistance:

The drivetrain of the Life Fitness Elevation Series Elliptical is a fairly simple belt one. Such a drivetrain does help the entire workout being much more quiet, although this is also helped by the Quiet Drive ™ technology that has been implemented here. It’s certainly a good drivetrain that does all that is needed.

The resistance of the Elevation Series Elliptical should most certainly challenge whoever climbs on if they so desire. There are 26 levels of resistance, ranging from 0-25. This should offer a good range for anyone who works out on it, as the higher levels will certainly offer a challenge. Even on the highest resistance levels, the workouts are still pretty quiet thanks to the combination of the belt drive and the technology that has been implemented.

Elevation Elliptical Handlebars, Stride Length and Pedals:

We now reach the parts that you’d be physically interacting with the most on the Life Fitness Elevation Series Elliptical. The handlebars and pedals are all important parts of the elliptical experience, as you want to make sure that they both do the job and remain comfortable while doing so. First up are the handlebars. There are a pair of moving handlebars on the outside, while there are stationary ones on the interior. These interior ones are generally for taking a break with your arms if they tire out before your lower body does. They also happen to have some pulse monitors on them, allowing you to keep track of your pulse if you don’t have a connected chest strap. Keep in mind that these trackers won’t be as accurate, but they will still give you an idea of how that pulse is moving.

Perhaps the first disappointing aspect of this elliptical comes in the form of the stride length. The stride length is a fixed 20 inches. There are no ramp angles available, so this stride length and incline will remain the same. While this isn’t the worst possible offence ever made by an elliptical, it would still be nice to have some sort of customization for an elliptical that comes with such a high price.

The pedals that they do have are fine, but they don’t do anything particularly special. The step-up height measures to be 11 inches (28 cm), which shouldn’t cause any issues for the vast majority of people. The dimensions of the non-slip pedals themselves measure out to be 17 inches (43 cm) long and 8 inches (20.3 cm) wide. These are large enough to fit anyone, and do their job. The Q-Factor of the pedals measures out to be 3.5 inches (8.9 cm). For those who are unaware, the Q-Factor is the distance between the two pedals on each side. If it is too wide the workout can become uncomfortable, whereas if it is too narrow, the same can occur with even a small risk of injury. The distance here works well and falls into the category of “Comfortable Q-Factor”.

Life Fitness Elevation Elliptical Series Price and Warranty:

Now we come to another of the less appealing parts of the Life Fitness Elevation Series; the price. This is an extremely pricey elliptical and will set you back a few thousand dollars, regardless of which console you choose. If you go for the SE3 HD Console, it will cost you right around $8500, while the alternative will only drop it down to $6000. This is a lot of money, although you should keep in mind that you are paying for a commercial and professional quality machine.

The warranties that come with such an expensive piece of equipment would be brilliant, no? Unfortunately, that simply is not the case. The warranties that come with the Life Fitness Elevation Series Elliptical are as follows: you get a lifetime warranty on the frame, 2 year limited warranty on the electrical and mechanical components and 1 year on the labour. That’s it. This is quite frankly rather poor, and you would want so much more for such a highly rated and pricey machine.

Life Fitness Elevation CrossTrainer Assembly and Shipping:

The shipping process comes straight from the manufacturers, so you shouldnt’ have to worry too much about the process getting overly complex. It might take a week or two depending on where you live and the circumstances around the transfer (such as a pandemic slowing the process down).

The assembly process shouldn’t be too difficult. It will probably take a while, as there is a lot to actually construct. However, the instruction manual should prove detailed enough for even those who aren’t mechanically skilled to get it done without too much issue.

Life Fitness Elevation Series Elliptical Machine Pros:

Brilliant Monitors, No Matter Your Choice:

The monitors on this elliptical is likely the key highlight. They are touchscreens, they have plenty of different resistance settings, Bluetooth connections and other interactive features that will make each exercise session feel like a new one. Whether it is accessing one of the interactive courses or connecting to a phone, you’ll be sure to enjoy using the capabilities of either monitor. They are simply fantastic.

Commercial-quality Build:

The general build of the Life Fitness Elevation Series Elliptical is very solid. It looks slick with the black and silver/white/black design and you can feel the stability of the elliptical as you exercise on it. There’s a reason that this is considered a commercial-level elliptical. It needs to be durable if gyms are going to be using it. This extends to more than just the frame. Every single element of the elliptical feels smooth and durable at the same time, from the pedals to the handlebars.

Flexible Resistance:

You’ll have plenty of options to choose from when trying to pick out the resistance on this elliptical. The 25 different options mean that you can either press yourself, take it easy or go somewhere in between. Such flexibility is always welcome, as it offers more options to the user. More flexibility means that it will take a long time for exercise sessions on this machine to become dull, if they ever will.

Life Fitness Elevation Series Elliptical Machine Cons:

This is A Huge Machine:

Considering that there’s no sort of foldability option here, this elliptical could be ruled out of a lot of homes based on size alone. It’s just so large that it needs a dedicated room or space to even hold it. The fact that there are no transportation wheels on the elliptical also means that you cannot easily move it in and out of different rooms. It’s just a very bulky piece of equipment and you’ll need to account for that.

Non-Adjustable Features:

A relatively minor complaint in the grand scheme of things, but with so many other professional features included on these Life Fitness ellipticals, you would like a little bit adjustability in terms of the stride length or pedals. When you look at some other models out there that do have such features, it makes you wish that those like the Elevation Series had them as well.

It Costs a Hefty Amount:

This is an extremely expensive machine. Even with the less costly monitor, you could still buy a used car for the same amount that you’d be paying for this machine. For the more advanced monitor you’d be paying almost $9000, which is a lot to pay for a piece of exercise equipment. Add in the less than fantastic warranties on the parts and components and the pricing starts to look less appealing.

Our Final Verdict

Life Fitness is one of the best fitness brands that you can find. They do a professional job and reflect it in how this elliptical performs. You could easily picture this in a class or a gym, but you can have it in your own home. The consoles of the Elevation Series Cross-Trainer are brilliant and should be praised regardless of which one you choose. They mix well with the resistance options available and can help anyone get fit, regardless of their skill level. Yet, you’ll have to be sure about this purchase, as the biggest victim will be that bank account. It’s a costly elliptical, but most certainly a quality one.

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