Sole S77 Treadmill Review – 2020

Last Updated: May 22, 2020

The Sole S77 treadmill is a commercial quality treadmill designed to satisfy serious runners who want to train at home. The S77 is similar to the Sole F85 with an upgraded 4.0HP continuous duty motor and a wide 22” and 60” long running deck. The Sole S77 is a non-folding treadmill, so you will need a dedicated space for this hearty machine. The steel frame is reinforced and welded for stability. Powder coated uprights hold the console securely over the track and wide side rails provide a comfortable step off point. The S77 sits 8” off the floor, so it is easy to get on and off and works well for anyone with joint or mobility issues. A few features on the S77 have been upgraded recently. The console features two heart rate training programs and includes a chest strap. When in training mode, the S77 will automatically adjust the incline to keep you in your target heart rate zone. The easy to read console displays speed, incline, time, distance traveled, calories, pulse and pace. There is also a ¼ mile track feature and display graph for different programs. The Sole S77 is an excellent training tool for larger users or those who plan to do extended training. Sole covers the S77 treadmill with a full lifetime warranty on the frame, motor and deck, which is a reflection of build quality and durability.

Sole S77 Treadmill review

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Who It’s For: Runners with a dedicated workout space looking for a commercial-grade non-folding treadmill with a powerful motor

The SoleS77 is for users looking for:

  • Commercial grade construction designed for at home use
  • Lifetime warranty on motor, frame and deck
  • Upgraded console with targeted heart rate training and automated speed control
  • Inclines to 15%
  • Max speed of 12mph
  • S77 syncs with Sole app for enhanced functionality that is navigable from your smartphone
  • Non-folding treadmill with high-grade steel frame rated up to 400lbs.
  • A 10.1” TFT backlit screen with 10 workout options
Pros
  • Advanced heart rate training will adjust the speed of your S77 to keep you in your target heart rate.
  • Solid non-folding frame is rated for users up to 400lbs and sits firmly on your floor for maximum support.
  • Steel beams, side rails and uprights make the S77 a hearty, durable training tool.
  • Included chest strap displays your heart rate right on the screen
  • 15% incline challenges posterior muscles for greater calorie burn and advanced hill work.
  • Extended lifetime warranty on frame, motor and deck with 5 years for electronics and 2 years on parts
  • Good for all types of training; walk, jog, run or do high-intensity intervals in the comfort of your own home
Cons
  • Speed and incline buttons skip two-by-two; there is not a separate button for each speed or incline level
  • Motor hood is large and can get in the way of a long forward stride
  • Treadmill does not fold up


FeaturesSpecifications
  • Flat Road to 15% Incline Range
    • The Sole S77 treadmill offers an impressive incline range that tilts up to a 15% grade. This allows runners to do incline runs, hill work, and train posterior muscle groups via the steep incline.
  • Footprint: 58” high x 36” wide x 82” long
    • The S77 does not fold, so you will need a dedicated space to set your treadmill. However, the full frame gives you extra support and cushion underfoot for heavy training.
  • Cushion Flex Whisper Deck
    • Sole claims their Flex Whisper deck design reduces foot impact by 40%. The reversible deck is wax lubricated, which reduces maintenance over time and is the same type of deck found on commercial grade treadmills.
  • Item Weight: 358 lbs, Max User Weight: 400 lbs.
    • The treadmill itself weighs 358 lbs which is a reflection of its solid build and you can feel that extra support in the reinforced deck. The S77 offers a max user weight up to 400lbs, so it is a great training tool for runners of any size.
  • 22” x 60” Running Surface
    • Enjoy a full running surface of 22” wide by 60” long with plenty of lateral space and good fore/aft room for an elongated stride.
  • Step Up Height: 8″
    • The low step-up height of just 8” allows users with knee or mobility issues to easily get on and off the deck.
  • Targeted Heart Rate Training and included HR chest strap
    • When in heart rate training mode, the S77 treadmill will automatically adjust speed to keep you in your target zone so you can run hands-free while the treadmill controls the pace.
  • 4.0 HP, DC Type Motor
    • This commercial-grade motor is powerful and quiet and designed for serious runners. The 4.0HP motor won’t overheat and is calibrated to support heavy users (up to 400lbs), intense training, and/or multiple users.
  • Tablet/Phone Holder
    • The oversized tablet holder with an adjustable clip is attached at the top of the console. This makes it easy to place your phone, tablet, or personal device here while you use the treadmill.
  • 10.1” TFT LCD screen
    • The console layout on the S77 is streamlined and functional. The S77 comes with either a 10” FTF or LCD screen. The white background with large black digital numbers is easy to see.
  • Lifetime warranty on Frame, Motor and Deck
    • Sole is one of the few companies that still backs up their treadmills with an impressive lifetime warranty on the frame, deck and motor. This is a reflection of Sole’s commitment to quality construction. They expect the S77 to work for you throughout your ownership of the machine.

Construction:

  • Footprint: 58” high x 36” wide x 82” long
  • Item Weight: 358 pounds
  • 22” x 60” Running Surface
  • 2.75” Rollers
  • Step Up Height: 8″
  • 4.0 HP, DC Type Motor
  • 2-Ply Belt

Console:

  • Bluetooth Speaker Compatible
  • Tablet/Phone Holder
  • USB Device Charging
  • Pulse Grips & Chest Strap Heart Rate Monitoring
  • Chest Strap Included
  • Cooling Fans
  • 10.1” TFT or LCD screen

Functionality:

  • Speed : .5 – 12 mph
  • Incline range to 15%
  • Whisper Deck Cushioning
  • 6 Standard Programs
  • 2 Custom Programs
  • 2 Heart Programs

Warranty:

  • Frame: Lifetime
  • Motor: Lifetime
  • Deck : Lifetime
  • Electronics: 5 Years
  • Labor: 2 Years

In-depth Review of Sole S77 Treadmill


Construction

Frame

Sole S77 frame
The Sole S77 non-folding treadmill is rated for intensive conditioning, so it works well for high-volume training or multi-user households. The steel side and cross beams support the deck, while powder coated uprights, steel handrails with a spongy overlay, and a reinforced console keeps the top end sturdy. Additionally, both the S77 chassis and motor are commercial grade. The S77 features Sole’s Flex Whisper deck, which allows for extra travel underfoot as you run. This reduces impact shock by 40% so you can run harder for longer without impact injury or fatigue. You can walk, jog, or run on the S77, and it will support larger users up to 400lbs. Sole builds the S77 with a precision welded frame which enhances durability. The industrial quality frame uses an all-steel zinc coated flywheel for a vibration-free running surface. The flywheel aids the motor so it does not overheat and requires less amp draw from your wall outlet.

Deck

  • Cushioning/Feel
    • Sole’s proprietary Cushion Flex Whisper Deck system allows for extra travel under the deck to absorb impact. Sole claims this reduces foot impact by 40% when compared to outdoor surfaces. While the S77 does provide some shock absorption, it isn’t as much as we were expecting. Sole’s focus is strength and durability, which limits flex in the deck just a bit. For some users, this added stiffness enhances the training value of the S77, since is more closely resembles outdoor surfaces. However, for those looking for extensive cushioning, it may not be as soft as expected. Running on the Cushion Flex Whisper deck is not uncomfortable, but it could be an issue for those who have joint or mobility issues.
  • Length/Width
    • The 60” long by 22” wide running belt provides plenty of space. This gives you plenty of space for a full forward stride and rear kickback. One issue we consistently have with Sole treadmills, however, is the large motor hood on the front end of the deck. The motor hood protects the motor and in folding machines, it is vital to have it on the front end. However, the S77 is not a folding machine, and we would love to see the motor hood reduced or the motor itself moved more securely under the deck. The problem with an overly large motor hood is If you run too close to the console, you can hit your foot on the motor housing which is irritating. Standing back away from the console helps, but a slightly lower profile cover would help reduce foot impact while running.
  • Belt and Rollers
    • The 2-ply belt has a gently textured surface and feels supportive underfoot. There is no slapping sound underfoot and the belt nestles against the side rails as it moves along. The belt is wax-lubricated for reduced maintenance.
    • 2.75” rollers reduce friction on the belt and lengthen the life of both the belt and motor since there is less heat and lower torque. The rollers have a sealed bearing design and copper ground wires reduce static which creates a smooth, static free motion that will stand the test of time.

Motor

Sole S77 Motor
The hearty 4.0 horsepower motor will support heavy training, interval work, and intense conditioning. The 4.0HP industrial grade motor is supported by a large, heavy flywheel that helps reduce torque on the motor. The S77 works well in homes with dedicated runners who plan to use and train on it for hours at a time. It also works well in homes where you have multiple users at different conditioning levels. The low step up height makes it ideal for anyone with limited mobility or joint issues. The motor drives the overall performance of the treadmill by facilitating incline and decline as well as maintaining and adjusting speed. You can incline and change pace at the same time without any lag from the motor. It is also surprisingly quiet — the most noise generated on the S77 is from foot impact, not the belt or motor. It is so quiet and smooth that we had to step off the machine at some point to determine whether it was actually inclining! You feel very stable and don’t have to grab the handrails for support during speed or incline changes thanks to the smooth operation of the motor.


Console

Sole S77 Console Layout

Layout

Sole has done an overhaul on many of their treadmill consoles in the last few years, but console layout can still be a bit confusing.

  • What we like:
    • There are tactile buttons along the top of the console for each program that you press down, so you know when you’ve selected your program. This is a nice feature for users who prefer a tactile button as opposed to a touchscreen button. There are also Incline Up and Down buttons (with an arrow) and Speed Up and Down buttons, so you can modify your pace or incline quickly on the console.Just a word of caution, however, we have found that raised tactile buttons are more likely to get dirty, broken or stuck with repeated use. Make sure your hands are always clean and not too sweaty so dust and debris don’t stick to your buttons over the life of your treadmill.
    • There is one button for each program option on the console. The screen will display the info about each program as you press the button, so you know what to expect.
    • In addition, there are more raised, tactile buttons on the handrails for speed (right) and incline (left). As far as we know, Sole is the only company to include buttons on the handrails. These are very handy when you want to change your pace or incline without lifting your hands off the handrails — so it is safer as well. Sometimes you can accidentally hit these when getting on or off the machine, so be careful when you step on the side rails to not accidentally touch the buttons.

SoleS77 handrail controls

  • What we don’t like:
    • The S77 does not have a different button for each speed or incline — instead there is a range for incline that begins at -4, then -2, but does not have a button for a 0% flat grade, instead it jumps to 2%, 4%, 6%, 9% and 12%. We would like to see a button for a flat grade at 0% incline as well as one for the max 15% incline. Some users may hit the 12% incline button not knowing they have three more levels above that.
    • Similarly, the speed buttons are 2mph, 3mph, 4mph, 5mph, 7mph, 9mph and 12mph. Rather than skip by twos or even threes, the speed buttons are rather random. These are probably the most common speeds used, but you have to look to make sure you hit the one you want since they jump a bit. Thankfully, there are easy to reach tactile buttons on the handrails that allow users to increase their speed and incline by smaller measurements.

Screen

The 10.1” screen comes in either a TFT or LCD display which is bright and easy to see. However, it doesn’t compare with the color touchscreens available on similarly priced machines. The Sole screen is simple and easy to understand. One reason Sole continues to be able to keep up with more tech-heavy machines is not every user wants all the extra tech found on some of the high end treadmills. While the console design and user interface is not the most intuitive on the Sole treadmill — once you figure out the layout and programs, it is easy to use. Also, you don’t need WiFi or an internet connection to use the Sole S77. All the programs are preloaded on the S77 so just plug in your treadmill and it is ready to go.

Fans/Other Accessories

  • There are two Fans that sit just above the screen — but unfortunately, they aren’t super powerful. While it’s nice to at least have some option here, the fans are relatively underpowered and don’t provide much of a breeze.
  • There is a headphone jackThere is a headphone jack in the console so you can plug in your headphones if desired.
  • You can sync your phone via Bluetooth. The Bluetooth connection allows you to sync your phone with the S77 and play your music through the speakers.
  • There is a tablet holder on the S77 There is a tablet holder on the S77 just above the console. This is a great addition since the console doesn’t offer WiFi or subscription options. The tablet holder makes it easy to run a cardio program on the treadmill while watching something on your tablet or phone. The adjustable clip should hold most devices securely.

Sole s77 tablet holder

Storage

The Sole S77 has two large pockets on either side of the console, both with two levels. There is also an additional storage tray that spans the width of the deck under the console. I was worried at first that this would be in my way while running, but it does not. The floating storage tray has three large pockets for added storage.


Functionality

Performance

The Sole S77 treadmill is excellent for heavy training, cardio conditioning and will support heavier runners up to 400lbs. It is exceptionally quiet when in use — aside from foot noise, the motor itself is nearly silent. The belt and rollers provide a smooth feel underfoot and you can feel how the reinforced frame keeps the whole machine steady. The deck cushioning is certainly softer than running outdoors, but not as cushioned as comparative treadmills in the same price range.

Incline / Decline range

Sole S77 Incline
The Sole S77 offers a 15% incline. Incline training helps strengthen glutes and hamstrings to offset quad dominance and facilitate muscular balance in the lower body. Adding incline variability to a training regimen helps prevent overuse injuries and ensure muscular balance. Studies evaluating caloric expenditure have estimated that users can burn up to 30% more calories when working an incline as opposed to a flat grade. You can walk and stay low impact but still get a high-intensity workout on the S77. At a 0% grade, the S77 has an 8” deck height, which makes it easy to step on and off.

Pre-programmed workouts

There are six preloaded programs on the S77, including: Manual, Hill, Fatburn, Cardio, Strength, and HIIT. Two custom programs and two heart rate training programs are also available with buttons for each just below the screen. Each button loads the same program each time, so you always know what you are getting.

Subscription Options: Sole app on phone

The Sole App can be downloaded to your phone to keep track of your workout stats, including calorie burn, heart rates and duration — but this does not correspond to an online subscription database of programs you can run via WiFi on the treadmill. It is handy to be able to control the S77 from your phone when desired. The Sole app is free and does not require a monthly subscription. The S77 is perfect for those who don’t want to worry about ongoing subscription costs or downloaded content.

Noise Level

The Sole S77 is very quiet. The smooth motor, soft belt, and sleek engineering keep the S77 running quietly in the background so the only sound is from your feet as you move along the deck. This is as quiet and smooth as any treadmill we’ve used. Additionally, the fact that it sits closer to the ground seems to help with noise absorption.

Storage / Folding

The Sole S77 does not fold up. The frame sits firmly on the ground and is not designed to fold or be moved regularly. There are wheels under the frame so you can roll it if needed, but ideally this machine should be placed where you plan to use it. The S77 is a hearty, well-built treadmill with strong frame support that works well for those with a committed space for training.

Bottom Line:

The Sole S77 has a precision welded frame, which increases its strength since it is not just bolted together. The welded frame is capable of handling multiple users of various weights and sizes so it is a good option for intense conditioning. It is also a good option for households that have users at different conditioning levels. The S77 has a heavy duty chassis and 4.0HP industrial quality motor with a large diameter, all-steel zinc coated balanced flywheel for a vibration-free running/walking surface. Treadmill flywheels augment motor power so the motor requires less amp draw when running and stays cool throughout the day. Sole also uses much heavier flywheels than comparable models, which provide a fluid motion underfoot. The double woven belt has four layers; two rubber layers over a middle PVC layer with a nylon backing that rolls over the deck and rollers. The rubber provides durability, the PVC limits the belt from overstretching, and the nylon provides a smooth static free surface to glide over the deck and rollers. The combination of the welded steel frame, powder coated uprights, large rollers, heavy flywheel and 2-ply belt make the S77 nearly indestructible. This is why Sole can offer a full lifetime warranty on the frame, motor and deck. The 15% incline adds valuable training variables and the 12mph max speed is smooth and consistent throughout the pace range. The S77 isn’t overly cushioned, but it certainly mitigates outdoor impact and is a safe and convenient way to run at home. We feel the console could use a few more speed and incline preset buttons, but the tactile nature is unique and helpful, and we like how the workout programs are easy to find and understand. The addition of handrail buttons are another feature users may really like since they make it easy to adjust speed or incline while keeping your hands on the handrails. The Sole S77 is sturdy, quiet, and powerful, and provides an excellent way to stay fit and active in the comfort of your own home.

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