Currently available for £499.00 from Sweatband.com
ProForm 325 CSX+ Recumbent Exercise Bike Review
The Proform brand is well known for producing fitness machines that represent excellent value for money at every price point in their catalogue. They’re packed with features (useful ones for the most part) and are built to a high standard. Their latest range contains a wide array of exercise bikes that take advantage of iFit technology to deliver more interesting and engaging workout sessions than traditional home exercise bikes. With more people than ever before changing their lifestyle to be more centred around the home, an exercise machine has become an important part of their new home-centric set-up. We took a look at the Proform 325 CSX+ recumbent exercise bike to see what Proform has managed to create at the lower-mid price point.
Keen to discover just what this sort of cash buys you these days we set about putting the 325 CSX+ through its paces.
But before any of that, first the assembly…….
Many recumbent bikes require a good deal more assembling than their upright cousins. In this regard this model does really very well. While there are more steps to full assembly these are mainly due to the need to assemble the seat and even then it’s only a couple more steps than you’d normally expect on an upright bike. After the seat, the rest of the steps are basically the same as any upright bike and with the manual being nice and clear and easy to follow, it took comfortably less than an hour to put this together. There’s nothing complicated but it does help if when putting some parts together to have a second person help out to hold things in place while you bolt the rest together. There are leg levellers at the rear of the bike which is very handy for making the sure the bike is set dead level with its feet planted firmly on the floor.
Design is a subjective thing but to our mind, this is a slick-looking bit of kit. Proform has avoided the factory grey that characterises so many of its models and here instead is a sleek, modern-looking silver and black design that makes it look more expensive that it actually is.
With a pleasantly easy assembly out of the way the first order of business is to make the adjustments to get yourself comfortable. With a fixed position backrest there’s a single seat adjustment to move it along the rail to alter the distance to the pedals and handlebars. The mechanism is slick and easy to use and with no pre-fixed positions, it’s possible to lock the seat at the best distance for you. It’s quick and easy and that should help to avoid any bike wars in the house of the ‘how many times have I told you to not mess with the seat’ nature. With the backrest being set at a fixed angle, there was an expectation that perhaps it wouldn’t be the most comfortable seat but Proform is as big as it is for good reason – they know what they’re doing over there. In the event, we could have no complaints about the seat. Every member of the testing team found the 325 CSX+ to be comfortable and to provide a good riding position making it easy to get a really good workout.
The action is smooth and while a 7kg flywheel can be smooth in an upright bike, in this recumbent bike it really shines. Our test model was silky smooth all the way through the cycle and the overall build provided a real sense that this is a quality piece of equipment as much as it’s a good-looking one. It offers a decent challenge too. With 22 levels of electronically controlled resistance, the 325 CSX+ has a top-end resistance that should easily meet the needs of most people making this model suitable for all but the most fanatical of gym bunnies.
The console features a 5-inch electronic display with large, bright, easy-to-read characters that deliver your workout info including speed, time, distance, resistance, calories, RPM, pace and pulse. There’s a scan feature too allowing you to get a readout of all your data in sequence. There are 25 workouts including a manual setting and 24 pre-set workouts that are divided into sensible categories for calorie, time and interval. The workouts themselves are standard fare but effective nonetheless and without subscribing to the iFit service there’s plenty enough here to keep one busy and entertained. There’s also the option of connecting your tablet/smartphone to the console of the bike and subscribing to the iFit interactive training service. The 325 CSX+ comes with a 1-year iFit Coach subscription included to iFit included giving you access to an ever-increasing number of videos in a library that’s already huge. iFit also gives you access to tailored personalised training programmes, allows you to race courses against other iFit members, lets you map out your cycling route using Google maps, provides advice on sleep and nutrition and a good deal more. For full details on everything iFit click here to visit their website.
To round things off this model comes with Bluetooth heart rate receiver, compatible music port for your mp3 player, stereo speakers, and a water bottle holder. It’s also covered by Proform’s 2-year onsite parts and labour warranty.
The Proform 325 CSX+ Recumbent bike is very solid bike, especially for a model at this price point. It's well put together, has a comfy seat with good lumbar support, has a challenging level of top-end resistance and comes with plenty of onboard workouts. As we'd expect from a Proform machine it's feature-rich too. All these things combined with the price being asked here makes it easy to recommend this gem. We do also need to mention the DKN RB-4i at this point if you're looking to take the next step up in build and function as it's on offer making it superb value right now.
ProForm 325 CSX+ Recumbent Exercise Bike - Console / Display Unit
- 7kg (15.4lbs) Inertia Enhanced Flywheel
- SMR Silent™ Magnetic Resistance
- 5” high contrast multi-colour display
- Console Feedback: Speed, time, distance, calories, resistance, RPM, pace, pulse
- Programmes: 25 (manual and 24 pre-set workout apps including 8 calorie, 8 time and 8 interval workouts)
- iFit Coach BLE Enabled - use the iFit Smart Cardio app on compatible tablets and smartphones (1-year iFit Coach subscription included)
- Heart Rate Measurement via dual EKG pulse grips and wireless heart rate receiver
- Ergonomic pedals with adjustable straps
- Extras: adjustable tablet holder, dual 2" stereo speakers, music port for iPod, water bottle holder, transport wheels
- Dimensions in use (LxWxH): 134cm (52.7”) x 64cm (25.2”) x 124cm (48.8”)
- Product Weight: 58kg (127.8lbs)
- Max. User Weight: 130kg (286.6lbs)
- Warranty: 2 years frame, parts and labour (if registered within 28 days of purchase)
Currently available for £499.00 from Sweatband.com
Also see our Exercise Bike Comparison Table
Whilst every effort is made to give you accurate information we cannot guarantee the technical specification. Models change on a regular basis and may differ slightly from the above review. We recommend you contact the retailer if you have a question regarding technical data. Please read our Legal Disclaimer