If you have ever used one of the rowing machines at your local gym, there is a good chance that you have used a Concept 2 rower because these top quality machines are commonly found in many gyms throughout the United States because of their overall performance and build quality.
However if you are looking to buy one of these top quality machines yourself, it’s worth pointing out that there are two models available – the Concept 2 Model D (which we reviewed here) and the Concept 2 Model E, which is the more expensive of the two and is the one I want to review today.
Let me start off by listing some of the main features and benefits of this machine before I take a closer look at some of the pros and cons, and explain the difference between these two models.
Concept 2 Model E Features And Benefits
- smooth and quiet flywheel
- intelligent resistance that responds to your every stroke
- 20 inch seat height for easy access on and off
- non-scratch finish
- includes backlit Performance Monitor 5
- track speed, distance, pace, watts and calories
- preset workouts and games
- strong and sturdy frame
- nickel plated chain
- adjustable footrests and ergonomic handle
- separates into two pieces for easy storage
- accommodates users up to 500 lbs
- easy assembly
- suitable for home and gym use
- 5-year frame warranty
- 2-year warranty on moving parts and PM5
Dimensions / Weight
As you can tell from the product photos, this is a solid, sturdy machine that will take up quite a lot of room in your home because it has dimensions of 8 feet x 2 feet when fully assembled, and requires total clearance space of 9 feet x 4 feet during your workout.
However it is not overly heavy at 65 lbs (29kg), and can be folded into two pieces fairly easily when it is not being used.
As you can tell from the extensive list of features and benefits above, there are a number of reasons why you should consider buying this Concept 2 Model E rower if it is within your budget.
I guess the biggest selling point is that the workout itself is guaranteed to be smooth and quiet, and can be as challenging as you want it to be because the resistance is determined by the intensity of your rowing stroke.
Plus you can use this machine as often as you like because the build quality is outstanding (accommodating anyone up to 500 lbs), and you will find that there is no movement at all during your workout.
It is also worth mentioning the display because this advanced PM5 console (pictured right) comes with a range of preset workouts and games, and allows you to track every aspect of your performance (speed, distance, etc) with precision accuracy.
It even has wireless capabilities so that you can hook it up with a wireless chest strap, connect with computers and smartphones, and make things a lot more exciting by racing against other rowers.
With regards to the seat, the one on this model is 20 inches off the ground, which is approximately the height of many chairs. Therefore it is a lot easier to get on and off, and is perfect for those people who have any kind of mobility problems.
Finally, it is also worth mentioning that this machine is very easy to assemble straight out of the box and shouldn’t take you any longer than around 15-30 minutes.
As with all items of fitness equipment, there are a couple of negatives, with the main one being the price because this one is generally a few hundred dollars more expensive than the Model D rower.
Another slight issue is the actual footprint of this machine because as I mentioned earlier, this is a substantial machine that will take up a lot of space in your home. However it does fold away really easily is this is a particular concern.
Finally, after reading some of the customer feedback online, I noticed that one or two people have complained about the seat being a little uncomfortable, which I have never found to be a problem myself when I’ve used it in the gym, but this can easily be replaced if necessary.
Overall, though, these are fairly minor issues in the grand scheme of things, and it’s safe that to say that the pros definitely outweigh the cons.
Model E v Model D – Which One Should You Buy?
If you have decided that you definitely want to buy one of the Concept 2 rowers, you basically have to decide whether or not you want to pay more for the convenience of having a higher seat that is a lot easier to get on and off because apart from this, there is very little difference between the two.
This Model E rower is roughly 8 pounds heavier and has a longer monitor arm and slightly different shaped legs, but they both use the same PM5 console and both take up the same amount of space.
So as I say, the key difference is the height of the seat because the Concept 2 Model D rower is 14 inches off the ground, whilst the Model E is 20 inches off the ground and is much easier to get on and off.
Where To Buy The Concept 2 Model E Indoor Rower
If you do decide to buy the Model E rowing machine, you should find that it will last you many years because this is a machine that is built to last, which is why it is a favorite with many gym owners. However there is a 5-year warranty on the frame and a 2-year warranty on the PM5 and the moving parts should anything go wrong.
You can buy this Concept 2 Model E rower from this page at Amazon.com, and although you have to assemble it yourself, this is a very simple job that should take you no longer than 15-30 minutes because the instructions are very easy to follow, and all of the tools that you need will be included.