ProForm Carbon EL Elliptical Review, Cons, Pros

The ProForm Carbon EL is the second entry in the ProForm Carbon Series after the Proform Carbon Ex elliptical and it’s the most affordable model you’ll find in the series. It’s an amazing entry-level elliptical trainer that’s equipped with powerful features and great accessories. This ProForm elliptical will help you reach your fitness goals while having fun and actually enjoying your fitness journey. In today’s ProForm Carbon EL elliptical review, we will take a look at everything this exercise machine has to offer and help you determine if it’s the right option for your needs.

The features on the ProForm Carbon EL are great, particularly for the price. You’ll be able to enjoy silent magnetic resistance, 18 resistance levels, a 19-inch stride length, an incline of up to 20 degrees, EKG pulse sensors, fixed and mobile handlebars, comfortable pedals, a 5-inch high contrast display, and so much more. It’s important to note there are a few characteristics that will feel like drawbacks if you forget this machine is designed for beginners. For example, the flywheel is light with only 15 pounds, but for the purposes of low-impact workouts for beginners, it does the job quite well.

The ProForm Carbon EL also features a few accessories that add a ton of value because they make your experience more enjoyable, entertaining, and comfortable. Overall, this ProForm elliptical trainer does a great job at delivering high-quality features for an affordable price. It’s effective, comfortable, it fits a great variety of users, and it offers a complete experience. Let’s continue with the ProForm Carbon EL elliptical review and take a deeper look into the features that make this elliptical such a great option for beginners!

ProForm Carbon EL Review
Heart Rate:
Pulse and WirelessPower Source:Standard Plugin
USB Charging Port:
YesDisplay:LED Screen
FrontFlywheel Weight:15 Pounds
1-Year Parts | 1-Year LaborCompact:Yes
Machine Weight:190 LbsFolding:No
Dimensions:68.5" L x 25" W x 67.75" HSpeaker:Yes
Max user weight:300 LbsCooling Fan:Yes
Resistance: 18-Level MagneticMedia Shelf:Yes
Incline Ramp:20° PoweredBottle Holder:Yes
Stride Length:19" FixedHandlebars:Without Built-in Controls
Programs: NoneBetter Alternative:ProForm Carbon EX

ProForm Carbon EL Review and Specs:

The ProForm Carbon EL has a user weight capacity of 300 pounds, which is quite nice because it means it can accommodate a variety of users. Moreover, the higher the weight capacity, the higher the stability trainees will be able to enjoy during their workouts. The dimensions of the ProForm Carbon EL are 68.5″ L x 25″ W x 67.75″ H, so it’s not a compact elliptical. However, it’s quite average in size and you won’t have a big issue finding a spot for it in your home gym.

Despite the size, the ProForm Carbon EL is not difficult to move around thanks to the mounted transport wheels. You will be able to move the machine however you see fit to find the right spot for it or to store it in another room if you ever need to do that. It’s important to note the ProForm Carbon EL is not foldable, which is a feature many users like, but it’s definitely not a deal-breaker because they make up for it with functional transport wheels.

When it comes to ceiling requirements, the ProForm Carbon EL should be placed in a room where the roof is at least 8 feet tall. This ProForm elliptical works with an AC adapter so it will have to be plugged in, so keep that in mind when you’re looking for a spot for it. The ProForm Carbon EL is designed with high-quality solid steel construction, which makes it sturdy and long-lasting, and a front-drive design. This is a huge part of the appeal because it’s not common to find a heavy-duty elliptical at this price point for entry-level users.

ProForm Carbon EL Elliptical Monitor

The ProForm Carbon EL features a 5-inch high contrast display, which is rather basic when compared to other ProForm displays, but it get the job done. It features QuickSpeed buttons so you can easily transition between levels while you’re working out and it will provide all the stats you need. It’s easy to read even though it’s small and it’s not lacking any important features. Something important to note about the ProForm Carbon EL is that it doesn’t come with any built-in workout programs because it’s meant to work entirely with iFit, for which you need to purchase a subscription.

Now, this may seem like a downside, but it’s far from it once you know what iFit has to offer. It’s definitely worth the investment because you’ll get access to unlimited workouts, instructor-led sessions, Google Maps routes, and so many other fitness tools that will make it possible for you to track your progress and reach the fitness goals you set out for yourself. iFit will track all your data automatically and you’ll find a plethora of workouts and exercise programs to satisfy your fitness needs and goals.

The workouts, whether they’re instructor-led or not, as well as the Google Maps routes, will make changes to your incline and resistance level so you can fully immerse yourself in the experience. For example, during a Google Map route, which you can choose from predetermined options or create yourself, the incline will change according to the terrain you’re traveling through. This is amazing because it will truly feel like you’re traveling the world! The ProForm Carbon EL is also Bluetooth-enabled so you can use your mobile device to use iFit and unlock all its power.

ProForm Carbon EL Stride and Incline

The stride and incline are essential features that make a huge difference in the functioning of an elliptical and they add a lot of value to this kind of exercise equipment. You’ll be happy to know ProForm covers its bases very well and they provide great stride and incline in all their elliptical trainer, this one is not the exception.

The ProForm Carbon EL features a 19-inch power adjustable stride length that fits a variety of users, up to 6 feet tall. If you’re taller than that, you might have to adjust your stride a bit or perhaps consider an elliptical with a greater stride length so you don’t experience any discomfort. With this stride length, a great variety of users will be able to enjoy a full and natural stride during their workouts, which adds to the comfort and overall workout experience.

The ProForm Carbon EL also offers an incline that’s adjustable up to 20 degrees. The incline ramp on this elliptical offers 5 different positions you’ll be able to try to target your lower-body muscles in different ways. Not to mention, this adds challenge to your workout by allowing you to target glutes, quads, and calves to feel the burn. The ProForm Carbon EL also offers 18 silent magnetic resistance levels with a 15-pound flywheel that’s just right for beginners.

ProForm Carbon EL Handlebars and Pedals

Like most ellipticals, the ProForm Carbon EL offers two sets of handlebars. You’ll find fixed handlebars that will allow you to rest your upper body and track your heart rate thanks to the built-in EKG pulse sensors. This is the only option for heart rate monitoring on the ProForm Carbon EL and you’ll be able to keep track of your heart rate in the console or through iFit.

The ProForm Carbon EL also features mobile handlebars that will allow you to engage your upper body so you can enjoy the total-body, low-impact workout experience. The mobile handlebars feature soft touch upper-body grips that are super comfortable and they feature a curved design. The handlebars don’t feature built-in controls for quick changes, which is a bit of a bummer, but all the controls are still easy to access on the console.

When it comes to the pedals, you’ll be happy to know the ProForm Carbon EL features oversized pedals that fit all shoe sizes perfectly. The pedals are also adjustable so you can try different foot positions to find the one that works best for you. They also offer a ton of stability, which is a must because it will make a difference in your confidence as a trainee. You want to feel like you can trust your ellipticals, and the oversized pedals are a huge part of what allow you to do that with the ProForm Carbon EL.

ProForm Carbon EL Accessories and Assembly

One of the best things about the ProForm Carbon EL is that it offers many accessories, which is uncommon for an entry-level, affordable elliptical. First, the ProForm Carbon EL comes with an integrated tablet holder that will allow you to use your tablet and other mobile devices while you workout. Whether that’s to access iFit, enjoy your entertainment, or multi-task, is up to you!

The console of the ProForm Carbon EL also features dual 2-inch speakers with an audio auxiliary port that’s compatible with smartphones and MP3 players so you can enjoy your favorite tunes. This is great because music is a great escape for when the workouts get a bit rough and it keeps you motivated, energized, and ready to go. The ProForm Carbon EL also comes with a water bottle holder so you can remember to hydrate yourself, which is easy to forget, but it’s very important.

The assembly process for the ProForm Carbon EL is simple, but it will take you some time. It takes around 2 hours to put everything together and you may need an extra pair of hands because the machine is heavy and not compact. They provide instructions that are easy to follow and super detailed, so you won’t have a hard time assembling the ProForm Carbon EL.

ProForm Carbon EL Warranty, Price, and Shipping

The warranty on the ProForm Carbon EL is enough, but it could be better. They offer 10-year coverage for the frame and 1-year coverage for parts and labor. When compared to the coverage other ProForm ellipticals have to offer, the warranty here leaves a lot to be desired. However, we have to take into account the price range, which is super affordable. They still provide decent coverage, so your investment will be fine.

They also offer a 30-day money-back guarantee in case you’re not happy with the purchase and want a refund. The ProForm Carbon EL is available on the ProForm site for $799 or $45 a month for 18 months. If you finish the payments within those 18 months, they won’t charge you any interest on the purchase. The ProForm Carbon EL also provides free shipping, which is always a good plus.

If you ever need anything from ProForm, contacting customer service is very easy. Simple go to their Contact page and find the department that’s relevant to whatever doubt you may have or issue you need to resolve. They’ll be there for whatever you need!

ProForm Carbon EL Elliptical Pros:

  • Sturdy, heavy-duty construction.
  • Low-impact, total-body workout.
  • 19-inch stride length and tt accommodate a variety of users.
  • Incline up to 20 degrees and Silent magnetic resistance.
  • Incline ramp offers 5 different positions.
  • 18 resistance levels and Fixed and mobile handlebars.
  • EKG pulse sensors for heart rate monitoring.
  • Oversized and adjustable pedals.
  • QuickSpeed buttons on the console.
  • Tablet holder and a bottle holder.
  • Dual 2-inch speakers and Bluetooth-enabled.
  • Audio auxiliary port compatible with smartphones and MP3 players.
  • iFit-enabled and 5-inch high contrast display.

ProForm Carbon EL Elliptical Cons:

  • No workout fan and Display is basic.
  • The 15-pound flywheel can be light for heavy users.
  • No workout programs.
  • No built-in controls on the handlebars.
  • No wireless heart rate monitoring.
  • It requires iFit membership and WiFi.

Final Verdict and Comparison

The ProForm Carbon EL is one of the best options on the market for beginners. It’s the perfect entry-level elliptical because it’s packed with features and it provides great accessories as well. It’s challenging for beginners, sturdy, comfortable, and provides a ton of workout possibilities so you can get the most out of your workouts.

Sayed Hamed Hosseiny
Sayed Hamed Hosseiny

Hi, my name is Sayed Hamed Hosseiny. I am a professional health and fitness trainer with nearly 20 years of experience using ellipticals, rowing machines, and spin bikes. I also have my own EU-based Rock Fitness Pro fitness brand where I design, import and sell exercise equipment such as rowing machines and spin bikes. I and writers on my team also often receive fitness equipment to review and evaluate their functionalities and performance from tens of different exercise machines manufacturers. Fitness equipment tips, guides, reviews, and comparisons on this website are my opinion (and opinions of my fitness expert colleagues) based on tens of criteria. I never accept payment to write reviews of products or say positive things about fitness equipment products. If brands are interested to have me review their rowers, ellipticals, or spin bikes, they can get in touch with me via email provided on the contact page and send a sample of their product.