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Last Updated: May 7, 2023
We really appreciate ProForm for making nice quality equipment at affordable prices. The Carbon CX exercise bike is just that. It has all of the qualities to make a stable indoor cycling bike, at a great price point. We especially appreciate that it uses adjustable magnetic resistance, has a heavy, 28 lb flywheel, and allows you to use your own device while riding to stream iFit or whatever you want. In this ProForm Carbon CX exercise bike spec review, I’ll highlight all the features you need to know as well as our team’s thoughts on what to expect.
Best Cheap Exercise Bike Awards:
The ProForm Carbon CX is on our best cheap exercise bikes list. We are impressed with how affordable, yet high-quality it is. Even at this price point, the Carbon CX uses magnetic resistance and has a solid front-mounted flywheel. It’s also made of solid steel and similarly constructed to ProForm’s premium exercise bikes.
Why Trust Our Review Of The ProForm Carbon CX
Our reviewers here at Treadmill Review Guru are indoor cycling instructors and enthusiasts who spend a lot of time in the saddle. We test a wide range of exercise bikes from different brands, as well as ProForm. It is with our experience in using and testing exercise bikes and equipment from ProForm, like the ProForm Pro 22, that we’re assessing the Carbon CX. By looking at a bike’s features and specs, we can get a good idea of how it performs and functions overall.
- It is very affordable, yet made of solid steel with a hearty design.
- The device tray allows you to use your own tablet or phone to stream iFit or whatever content you want.
- When connected to iFit, the resistance automatically changes with the instructor’s cues.
- The handlebars offer a lot of different hand positions while riding.
- The bike is made of solid steel and sturdy at 125 lbs.
- ProForm backs the construction with a 10-year frame warranty.
- In order to adjust the resistance yourself, you have to remove your tablet from the device tray.
- It only has a 250 lb weight capacity.
- The handles only adjust up and down, not forward and back.
- Adjustable Integrated Tablet Holder
- LCD Window Display
- Compatible with iFit
- Free Trial of iFit for the First Month
- Water Bottle Holder
- 3 lb Weights Included
- Footprint: 52.5” L x 21.9” W x 51” H
- Bike Weight: 125 lbs
- Weight Capacity: 250 lbs
- Adjustable Leveling Feet
- Front-Mounted Transport Wheels
- Toe Caged Pedals
- 28 lb Inertia-Enhanced Flywheel
- Multi-Grip Handlebars
- White Padded Seat
- 16 Levels of Adjustable Magnetic Resistance
- Warranty: 10-Year Frame, 1-Year Parts and Labor
In-depth Review of the ProForm Carbon CX Exercise Bike
Being from ProForm, the Carbon CX exercise bike is compatible with iFit. iFit is an interactive training software that lets you get guided workouts from the comfort of your home. iFit requires a monthly subscription to use, and this comes free for the first 30 days when you purchase the Carbon CX.
To use iFit, you will need to download and stream the app from your device whether that be a tablet or phone. You can also use the app on your smart TV, to view from a larger screen.
iFit offers trainer-led classes on and off the bike. You can take on-demand indoor studio classes as well as numerous outdoor rides in beautiful locations all over the world. There are over 16,000 classes, and on the app, you’ll have access to all of them. In addition to the variety of bike classes, you can take mat classes like strength training, yoga, pilates, stretching, meditation, and even watch TED Talks. So, after you’re done cycling, or before, you can vary your training schedule with other types of training for your whole body and mind.
There are also treadmill, rowing, and elliptical classes that you can take on compatible equipment or with your device.
Of course, if you already have iFit-enabled e quipment, you’ll be able to use your membership to log into the app on your device and follow along on the Carbon CX.
The console consists of an LCD window display and the device holder. The LCD window display is actually built into the holder. This is where you adjust the resistance and see your workout metrics. There is also an iFit button to connect the bike to iFit when you’re using your device. When connected, the Carbon CX will adjust the resistance automatically when taking an iFit class. This way you can have a hands-free riding experience.
You can of course bypass the SmartAdjust feature and adjust the bike yourself, however, if you’re streaming iFit or just using your device on the holder, you’ll have to move it to do so. When you place your device on the tray, the LCD window display is blocked. This isn’t a huge deal, but we can imagine it gets a little annoying to have to move your tablet/phone out of the way to change your resistance level. A resistance knob would be a nice solution.
An added perk to the device holder is that it adjusts so you can see your iFit class from on and off the bike. This is especially beneficial when you’re taking bike boot camp classes.
Of course, if you don’t want to use iFit, you can stream any content of your choice. That makes the Carbon CX very enticing and versatile. You can also use it like a regular exercise bike and just hop on and go, as well.
Below the handlebars is a brake for the flywheel, so if you need to stop quickly you just press on it. There’s also a water bottle holder attached to the frame. It is just a plastic clip, much like on the NordicTrack S27i Studio Bike and ProForm Pro 22, but it should hold most water bottles.
Construction Quality & Durability
Considering the ProForm Carbon CX weighs 125 lbs, we anticipate that it will feel sturdy and stable. Moving this bike shouldn’t be too difficult for most users. There are front transportation wheels so you can lift up the back end and wheel it around.
We are a little disappointed to see that the max weight capacity is only 250 lbs. 350 lbs is usually some of the highest capacities we see.
The frame of the bike closely resembles the ProForm Studio Bike Pro 22 and ProForm Studio Bike Pro. The frame is made of solid steel and the front and rear stabilizers are connected by an additional steel piece that runs under the bike. This definitely adds to the stability of the bike, and we’re thrilled to see this on such an affordable bike. The Carbon CX should perform similarly to ProForm’s higher-end bikes.
The flywheel weighs about 28 lbs. This is a nice weight. Considering the price point, I would be weary to recommend this bike if it had a light flywheel of under 15 lbs. Heavy flywheels of 20-30 lbs and more tend to be secure and smooth. Light flywheels under 10 lbs are best on more expensive bikes.
The flywheel on the Carbon CX is similar to ProForm’s other bikes. It is said to be inertia-enhanced as well, so we assume it provides a smooth, stable pedal stroke. The Carbon CX uses magnetic resistance so it should be very quiet, if not practically silent. Magnetic resistance is usually more expensive and less damaging to the flywheel than friction resistance, so we’re happy to see it on this bike. There are 16 different levels of resistance to choose from.
The ProForm Carbon CX uses a belt drive system, which will help keep the bike quiet and smooth to use. The belt is what connects the pedals to the flywheel. The Carbon CX has toe-caged pedals so users of most shoe sizes should be able to use these just fine. The toe cages are designed to be compatible with any type of athletic shoe. If you wanted a clipped-in experience, you’ll need to swap out these pedals.
Handlebars And Saddle
I really like the looks of these handles. They remind me of the ProForm Pro 22 and also the Peloton Bike+. The horizontal bar is angled but should offer plenty of grip options when you’re in and out of the saddle. Unfortunately, the handlebars only adjust up and down and not forward and back. The saddle adjusts up/down and forward/back though, so most users should be able to get a good bike fit.
Speaking of the saddle, it is white which is unique. There are reviews saying it is uncomfortable, but this saddle can be swapped out with another. The thing with bike saddles is if you’re new to indoor cycling, they can take some getting used to. By looking at it, this one on the Carbon CX is designed to be narrow, making it perfect for long rides. Wider seats can cause saddle sores.
ProForm offers a standard warranty for the Carbon CX. With the purchase of this bike you’ll get a 10-year warranty for the frame, and a 1-year warranty for parts and labor. We appreciate that they include this warranty on such an affordable bike.
Bottom Line Review: ProForm Carbon CX Exercise Bike
The ProForm Carbon CX Exercise Bike has a similar design and construction as ProForm’s premium bikes but at a lower cost. It is made of steel and weighs 125 lbs which indicates a solid build. It uses adjustable magnetic resistance and has a belt drive system, so it should be suitable to use in any home space. The Carbon CX allows for a lot of versatility. It comes with a device holder so you can stream whatever you want while you ride. It’s also compatible with iFit so you can connect the bike and follow along with the instructor – the resistance will even change for you during class! We’re most impressed that you get all of these options at such an affordable price. If you’re looking for a capable exercise bike that won’t break the bank, the ProForm Carbon CX is a great option.