Precor EFX 5.23 Elliptical Trainer Review

The Precor EFX 5.23 elliptical trainer is a mid-range/high-end machine that has been designed to offer a full-body workout. It’s absolutely packed with features including eight preset workout programs (including weight loss, interval and fat burner etc), ergonomic handlebars, sixteen resistance levels, Smart Rate technology (for monitoring your heart rate) and oozes quality.

It’s definitely one of the more costly elliptical trainers on the market coming in at around the $2,300 – $2,800 mark but for this price, you get an ergonomic, low-impact machine that performs smoothly and naturally. The overall design of the machine may be a little understated (at least we think it is) but don’t be fooled, it’s one of the most well-designed elliptical trainers on the market and the build-quality is second-to-none.

There’s very little to complain about with the Precor EFX 5.23 elliptical trainer, but it might not be suited to everyone.

 

Dimensions

  • 29 (width) x 62 (height) x 76 (depth) inches.
  • 183 pounds (97.5kg) unpacked weight.

 

Key Features

  • CrossRamp® Technology: Manual
  • Ramp Angle: 3 positions, 15°
  • Resistance Levels: 16
  • Console Type: LCD
  • QuickStart: Yes
  • Preset Programs: Cross Trainer, Fat Burner, Gluteals, Heart Rate, Hill Climb, Interval, Manual, Weight Loss
  • Number of Programs: 8
  • Electronic Readouts: Calories, Distance, Heart rate, Program profile, Resistance level, SmartRate®, Strides per minute, Time
  • Heart Rate Monitoring Touch: Yes
  • Telemetry: Yes, chest strap transmitter required
  • SmartRate®: Yes
  • Chest Strap Transmitter: Works with any Polar® compatible 5 KHz chest strap transmitter
  • 15-inch foot pedals (7-inches wide)

 

Comfort (9/10)

The Precor EFX 5.23 elliptical trainer excels when it comes to comfort. It has a patented low-impact EFX motion (hence the name) which is designed to ensure a smooth, natural, ergonomic motion throughout your workout. Not only this, but it has also been designed to ensure a low rate of perceived exertion which makes your workouts feel much more comfortable than they’re likely to feel with other elliptical machines, even if you happen to be working out quite vigorously. It also allows your heels to remain in contact with the foot pedals during use which helps to eliminate muscle and tendon stress.

“It works beautifully, quiet and smooth and just so comfortable to use.”Click here to read the full review on Amazon.

Precor’s passion for ergonomic design is continued throughout the design of the elliptical. For example, the moving handlebars have been designed not only to offer an ergonomic range of motion but also, to deliver a full body workout. They allow you to tone and condition your body while maintaining a natural range of motion, comfortable posture and a proper technique. This is an area that many elliptical trainers fall short, so it’s good to see Precor taking the opportunity to stand out from the crowd here.

The Precor EFX 5.23’s large 15-inch foot pedals are also extremely comfortable, even for those with large feet. However, one thing that does let the Precor EFX 5.23 elliptical trainer down slightly is the relatively short stride length. It’s only 18-inches which means that if you’re over the 5’7″ – 5’8″ mark, you might find this particular elliptical trainer a little uncomfortable to use.

 

Performance (9/10)

Performance is yet another area the Precor EFX 5.23 excels. It’s a quiet, ergonomic machine that feels extremely sturdy and high-quality when in use.

For those looking for an elliptical with a lot of versatility in terms of the workout programs on offer, look no further than the Precor EFX 5.23. It features eight preset programs including cross trainer, fat burner, heart rate, gluteals, interval, hill climb, weight loss and manual. There are also sixteen levels of resistance which gives you a great amount of control over the intensity of your workouts; it also allows you to tailor your workouts to your own unique fitness goals with ease.

“SmartRate gives you clear indication when you are exceeding your heart’s safety threshold.” – Click here to read the full review on Amazon.

The Precor EFX 5.23 also features CrossRamp technology. This allows you to adjust the height of the elliptical and you can choose from three positions: high, medium and low. By altering the height of the CrossRamp, you can target specific lower-body muscle groups to further customise your workout routine. Essentially, the CrossRamp technology makes height adjustment easier and more straight-forward than on many other elliptical machines as there are only three options to choose from.

It should be noted that this is a manual process rather than an electronic one; this could definitely be improved upon but typically, this is what you’d expect for a machine in this price range.

Another useful addition to the Precor EFX 5.23 elliptical trainer is the companies patented Smart Rate technology. Essentially, this analyses your heart rate and takes into account your weight and age to help you to stay within your fat burn, cardio or peak-target zone. This is particularly useful for those looking to lose weight as it helps to ensure a more efficient workout driven by your individual fitness goals.

 

 

Ease Of Use & Convenience (8.5/10)

precor-efx-523-elliptical-lcd

The Precor EFX 5.23 is, on the whole, an easy and convenient elliptical trainer to use. Even the initial set-up of the machine should only take a couple of hours at the most. If you compare this with elliptical trainers such as the Sole E35, you’ll notice that the Precor EFX 5.23 can be put-together in around half the time.

“The display is clear. The handlebars are comfortable. In short, once you are up on this elliptical, time absolutely flies.” – Click here to read the full review on Amazon.

The Precor EFX 5.23 remains convenient once it is set-up too. It has an easily accessible water bottle holder and book rest. The book rest is also suitable for holding your Smartphone, e-reader or tablet PC although it should be noted that when in use, any contents placed on the book rest will actually cover up the majority of the LCD screen. It’s not a big problem, but it is a small design flaw. Many elliptical trainers (even ones in the same price range as the EFX 5.23) have the same problem.

However, by far the most inconvenient thing about the Precor EFX 5.23 elliptical trainer is the obscure location of the on/off switch. For whatever reason, it’s located near the bottom of the machine at the rear. If you plan on placing your elliptical trainer against the wall, this could make switching the machine on/off a minor annoyance.

Making use of the SmartRate technology is easy and straight-forward too. You can either use the in-built sensors located on the ergonomic handlebars or for a slightly more accurate reading, a chest strap (not included).

 

Entertainment (5/10)

“There are not as many bells and whistles, but the machine itself is meant for business.” – Click here to read the full review on Amazon.

For a relatively high-priced elliptical trainer, the Precor EFX 5.23 is slightly let-down by its lack of any entertainment features whatsoever. Unlike many other mid-range elliptical trainers. the Precor EFX 5.23 has no sound system to speak of, and no iPod/MP3 player connectivity.

If you’re the sort of person that usually listens to their music on headphones, this likely won’t be too much of a problem for you, there’s still a perfectly adequate book rest where your iPod/MP3 player can be placed.

 

Warranty

  • Frame & welds: Lifetime
  • Parts and wear items: Five years
  • Labor (in-home): One year

 

The Final Verdict

The Precor EFX 5.23 elliptical trainer is, for the most part, an excellent machine for anyone serious about fitness looking for a mid-range solution. The build-quality is excellent, it’s quiet and it has more workout programs and customisation options than most other elliptical machines on the market in this price range.

“I wanted a machine that I would have for years, enjoy using, and benefit from – this has fulfilled every expectation.” – Click here to read the full review on Amazon.

Sure, the machine might be lacking a few mod-cons such as a sound system and cooling fan but truthfully, this might be a blessing in disguise. Typically, the sound systems and cooling fans built-in to most elliptical trainers are nothing more than gimmicks. The sound quality is usually terrible and the cooling fans leave a lot to be desired to say the least.

With the Precor EFX 5.23 elliptical trainer, Precor have focussed on what’s important. The ergonomic design of the machine (combined with the use of Precor patented technology) has created an elliptical trainer that puts comfort and performance above everything else. It’s also a lot smaller and more compact than many other elliptical trainers so if you have limited space, this could be the machine for you.

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