ProForm Smart Strider 495 CSE Review

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by BEMH • Updated: April 05, 2019

Proform Smart Strider 495 CSE elliptical is your best choice for the budget ellipticals under $600. We don’t believe there is a better machine in this price range that can compete with this Proform Smart Strider elliptical.

To keep everything clear for our readers so there is no confusion we would like to let you know that because we say the Proform Smart Strider 495 CSE elliptical trainer is the best budget cross trainer for under $600, it doesn’t mean this Smart Strider elliptical will provide gym quality ride.

It simply means if you have a tight budget and small space and looking to buy a budget elliptical, this Smart Strider elliptical trainer is your best choice. ProForm Smart Strider 495 Elliptical features an 18-inch fixed stride length that can accommodate and offer a good exercise for average height users.

495 Elliptical features 18 magnetic quiet and smooth resistance. However, it doesn’t have the incline ramp to offer better lower body workout. There are two sets of handlebars, the static with built-in heart rate and the moving handlebars.

ProForm Smart Strider elliptical trainer 495 CSE features a basic non-backlit display. It’s to be used only to track the workout values, the user can’t use it to browse and watch videos on the web.

However, it does have Bluetooth connection capability to allow the user connect their tablet/phone or other devices to track the workout progress on the web. There are 18 preset-programs to help exercisers easier achieve their goals.

What really sets the ProForm Smart Strider elliptical trainer 495 CSE apart is the foldability. In addition to what we talked about there are a few other reasons that make us believe this Smart Strider elliptical trainer is the best budget elliptical under the $600 and one of them is the sturdiness.

Compare to any elliptical below $600 we have reviewed this folding elliptical is sturdier. Proform Smart Strider 495 CSE elliptical provides a smooth and steady ride.

ProForm Smart Strider 495 Elliptical Overview

Considerations:

You should go for ProForm Smart Strider CSE elliptical trainer if?

  •  You have small space. One of the useful functionalities of Proform Smart Strider is that fact that it can be folded and stored easily. After every use, you can fold it and store it in the closet or somewhere out of the way. You don’t need much of strength to do so because this cross trainer is light and has multiple handles to help you lift it up and move it around.
  • Multiple users want to exercise. Unlike some budget elliptical trainers that can’t handle multiple users, the ProForm Smart Strider 495 CSE can provide more than one-hour daily training so more than one person can exercise on it.
  • You are novice or intermediate. ProForm Smart Strider 495 CSE can easily meet the needs of Novice and intermediate level athletes.

You should NOT go for ProForm Smart Strider CSE elliptical if?

  • You are a serious exerciser. ProForm Smart Strider 495 folding elliptical is not for serious and elite elliptical trainers. As a matter of fact, there isn’t any budget elliptical that I would recommend for elite athletes. Therefore, if you are an experienced and serious trainer who is used to the gym quality elliptical machines, we recommend you look for something more durable such as Body Solid 300 or Body Solid 5000.
  • You are a heavyweight and tall user. Smart Strider 495 comes with a light flywheel and not so durable frame and parts. This folding cross trainer has 18″ fixed stride which wouldn’t offer a good exercise for users above 6.3″. It would probably also wobble during intense training.
  • You are an individual who like to do incline/stair training, this machine doesn’t have the incline ramp feature.
  • You are a gym owner. This folding elliptical doesn’t have the quality for commercial use.

What is special about Proform Smart Strider 495 CSE elliptical

  • Bluetooth-enabled, you can connect your phone or tablet to this Proform Smart Strider elliptical and synch all your workout values with the iFit app. You can also enjoy a countless number of workouts and ride on the famous road through Google map.
  • Foldable, one of the best features of this Proform smart strider budget elliptical trainer is the compact and foldable design. In one easy step, you can fold the whole machine and have stand vertically on its tail. All you need to do is to loosen the knob at the front bottom of the frame and hold it from the handles to have the machine stand vertically. Once it’s standing you can easily move the machine inside a closet or behind a curtain. The transport wheels and the extra handle at the bottom of the frame make it super easy to move this Proform Smart Strider elliptical around. You can get the benefits and the feel of a full-size elliptical machine and save a lot of space with the ProForm Smart Strider 495 CSE folding Elliptical.
  • Sturdiness, for the best ellipticals under $600 this Proform folding elliptical has the most stable and heavy duty constructed steel frame on the market. You won’t experience the unpleasant wobbling during the intense workout that you might get on other cheap elliptical machines.
    Good quality built-in speakers, iPod/MP3 connection, multiple pre-set programs are some other great features that you will find out through this detailed review of ProForm Smart Strider 495 CSE Elliptical.
  • Assembly, this folding elliptical machine comes mostly assembled and you wouldn’t need to pay for a professional to put it together for you.

ProForm Smart Strider 495 CSE Elliptical Review

Resistance

This ProForm Smart strider has 18 elector-magnetic resistance levels. The resistance is quiet and smooth and also provides a good amount of tension for beginners and intermediate level athletes.

However, the tension is not enough to challenge experience and elite exercisers. More resistance allows you to do strength training in addition to the cardio workout. If you are looking for a machine with more resistance, check out the Sole E35.

You can adjust the resistance both through the quick buttons or simply the normal controls on the console. You can also view your resistance level on the LCD display or your device if it’s connected to the console.

Stride & Incline

This folding elliptical has 18 inches fixed stride length so, it’s not adjustable. Trainees from 5 to 6.3 can have a full stride motion on this compact elliptical. However, if you are taller, you may not be able to stretch your strides much.

With this being said, not many exercises like to do fully stretched strides. So, if you are taller and don’t mind shorter strides motion, 18 inches can provide a good workout.

This ProForm Smart Strider elliptical doesn’t have incline ramp to allow the trainees do hills or workout different lower body muscle groups. It’s a feature missing on this model but you can get it on this model that cost around $300 more.

Console

495 Proform folding elliptical has a very basic console that displays the necessary information about your workout. However, you can not see the values at once.

It scans and changes through every value at a time. You can connect the console to your device and track the data on the tablet so, the basic LCD isn’t an issue. You can track the following values of your workout.

ProForm Smart Strider 495 CSE Elliptical
ProForm Smart Strider 495 Console

Resistance Level, watts
Distance
Speed
Total Strides
Calories
Average Heart Rate

User profile
This budget compact elliptical doesn’t have user profile to save your workouts and values on the machine. Although, it’s a drawback because you can save your workouts on the iFit app.

Preset- Programs
There are 18 built-in workouts designed by certified trainers to help you reach your fitness goals and use your time on the machine more efficiently. Nine programs are calories and 9 are performance regimes.

Heart rate
Proform 495 Elliptical has pulse monitor, only. It’s not compatible with the chest strap. If you want to stay on your target heart rate, you can use the static handlebars which have accurate EKG pulse monitor.

Speaker and cooling fan
There are a set of good quality speakers on the console. You can plug in your MP3 or iPod and listen to your music without headphones. However, there is no cooling fan on this compact elliptical.

Bluetooth and connectivity
Bluetooth and iFit compatibility are one of the best features of this compact folding elliptical machine. You can connect to the online world and get tons of workouts. You can also ride to beautiful destinations around the world from inside your room with Google Map. Connect your tablet to the machine and put it on the console in the adjustable media tray.

Pedals and Handlebars

The pedals on this excellent budget machine are oversize and comfortable to use. However, they aren’t cushioned to keep you extra comfortable for longer periods.

The softly cushioned handlebars are ergonomically designed to allow short and long arm riders workout upper body without struggling. They don’t have loops to provide extra hand-grips variety but I guess it’s something you get in high-end ellipticals.

You can do a full body workout on ProForm Smart Stride 495 elliptical by using the static and moving handlebars. For obvious reasons though, the folding handlebars are never as stable as welded one-piece elliptical handlebars and wobble a bit but it’s nothing major, especially for the price.

More information on ProForm Smart Strider 495 elliptical

Console:⋰⋰⋰⋰⋰⋰★★★☆☆⋰⋰⋰⋰⋰⋰Bluetooth:⋰⋰⋰⋰⋰⋰Yes⋰⋰⋰⋰⋰⋰⋰⋰⋰⋰⋰
Customer Service★★★★☆Power Source:AC-Adapter
Sturdiness★★★☆☆Display:Non-Back-lit
Warranty★★★☆☆Flywheel:13-Lb
Average Rating★★★☆☆Compact:No
Machine Weight:183 LbsFolding:Yes
Dimensions:63"L X 32"W X 80"HSpeakerYes
Max user weight:275 LbsCooling FanNo
Resistance:18-Level MagneticBidirectional:Yes
Incline Ramp:NoBottle Holder:Yes
Stride Length:18" FixedMedia ShelfYes
Programs:18Price:

Drive mechanism

This compact elliptical has a 13 Lbs inertia-enhanced Flywheel. It’s not great but for this price, I guess it’s something you can’t really complain about. Also, keep in mind with magnetic resistance the weight of the flywheel is not a huge factor.

The heavier flywheel means a more natural motion and better stability. The newer model of ProForm Smart Strider elliptical has a 5 pound heavier flywheel but it’s also $300 more expensive. This budget Folding elliptical cross trainer is the rear drive which is why it’s a bit longer. You can pedal forward and reverse on ProForm Smart Strider 495 CSE Elliptical.

What’s included

  • Water bottle holder
  • Two media trays
  • Two transport handles
  • Transport wheels
  • Power adapter
  • Home use warranty:
  • Lifetime on Frame
  • 1-Year parts
  • 1-Year labor

Accessories to consider with ProForm Smart Strider 495

  • Mat in order to protect your floor from possible scratches and sweat
  • Lubricant to keep the parts away from friction and making noise
  • Wipes and liquid to disinfect and clean the Smart Strider 495 CSE

Smart Strider 495 CSE Assembly

Most parts come pre-assembled and some tools needed to for assembly of this folding elliptical are included, however, it’s always better to have your handy as well. Order the elliptical and if you think you can put it together, do it. Otherwise, you can always call the technician to come and do it for you.

Final Word on ProForm 495 CSE Smart Strider

It’s compact quiet folding elliptical for Condos and apartments owners with lack of space and a tight budget. As you can see there are many reasons why we picked the ProForm Smart Strider 495 CSE Elliptical as the best budget elliptical for under $600.

You get a sturdy compact folding elliptical that allows you to do a full body workout. Features such as foldable design, 18 preset programs and 18 resistance levels, Bluetooth connectivity and iPod connection with built-in speakers are usually found in more expensive elliptical trainers.

It’s also iFit compatible for interactive workouts with Google Maps to run around the world on famous trails and watch the landmarks on your tablet. It’s where you can take your exercise online and download limitless workouts or simply track your workout on daily basis.

Bottom line is that ProForm Smart Strider 495 CSE folding Elliptical trainer is not a high-end cross trainer. There are features and functionalities such as incline ramp, better display, more resistance, heavier flywheel missing on this machine.

Although,  you can’t beat the ProForm Smart Strider 495 CSE Elliptical price. This folding cross trainer offers everything you can expect from a budget elliptical and multiple times has been rated in the top elliptical reviews in other websites. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this reputable product to any of our readers who look for the best elliptical machines under $600.

☟ PROS

  • Sturdy
  • Foldable, it saves space and can be stored in the closet
  • Affordable
  • Two media trays, one for the tablet and one for your MP3/iPod
  • Bidirectional
  • 18 Magnetic resistance
  • 18 Workout programs
  • iFit compatible, Bluetooth connectivity
  • 3-Steps easy assembly
  • 1-Step folding
  • Two transport handles, below the frame and in front

☟ CONS

  • 18-Inch fixed stride
  • No incline ramp
  • Basic non-back-lit LCD display
  • It’s not self-power
  • Big footprint when in use due to the rear drive system
  • Light Flywheel
  • Pedals are not cushioned
  • Only 1-year warranty on parts
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