The Horizon Evolve 3 elliptical trainer is a step up from the base EX-59 model, with good features, a fold up frame for easy storage and Passport HD video technology to take your workouts to the next level. It's a very good option in the just above $1000 price range.
The Evolve 3 features a 5.5" Blue backlit LCD display, an inch bigger than what you get on the EX-59 model. It shows the time, distance, speed, calories, resistance, heart rate, watts and CardioCompass to keep you in your ideal range.
You also get ViaFit connectivity which allows you to track all of your workouts and sync them with any fitness apps that you use, and Passport which actually syncs with your television so you can virtually work out in various locations across the world. The machine automatically adjusts itself to match the terrain.
Some of the best features include:
The Horizon Evolve 3 elliptical is a nice step up from the entry level EX-59 model, which itself is a great low-priced machine. You get their patented SixStar Frame which means the pedals are ideally placed, the handlebars are spaced out optimally, there is smooth momentum, a natural foot path, the body is kept in a straight position and there's a low step on height for easy access.
So everything is designed to give you the most naturally balanced motion you can possibly have, which really makes a difference and allows you to work out longer without the usual fatigue.
Users seem to be very happy with the large number of workouts, 32 in total, as well as the ample resistance levels and easy set up and folding capability. Those are the three main highlights from user reviews.
The most popular features on all Horizon models are ViaFit and Passport, also available on the Evolve 5 model, both of which help take the monotony out of your workouts.
ViaFit is great because you can track your progress and sync your results with any fitness app you might use. You can also share your results with friends and family which is pretty cool.
Passport is similar to ICON's iFit technology, as you can choose a location and see it unfold in front of you while you run. The machine automatically changes speed and intensity to match the terrain. You do have to buy the Passport Player though, which comes preloaded with two destinations: Northern Italy and the American Southwest.
The Evolve Series is a nice bridge between the base model and the higher end Elite models. It's for those who are not quite beginners and are looking for something a little more substantial than an entry level elliptical trainer.
The Evolve 3 and its big brother the Evolve 5 are both very compact, and they also fold, which makes them ideal for smaller spaces or just for those who like to fold and stow their machines after a workout. The EX-59 and the Elite E7 and E9 do not fold, so the Evolve Series is the only foldable choice.
When it comes to the Evolve 3 vs the Evolve 5, both machines are very similar, with just a few differences between them. The Evolve 3 has an 18 lb. flywheel while the Evolve 5 has a 23 lb. flywheel. Note that the heavier the flywheel, the smoother and quieter the motion, so the Evolve 5 will be a little better in that regard.
The Evolve 5 also has a slightly advanced display: a 6.25 inch blue backlit LCD screen vs the 5.5 inch yellow-green display on the Evolve 3. Lastly, the Evolve 5 has additional custom, performance and calorie based workouts.
So choosing between the Evolve 3 and Evolve 5 should basically come down to budget. The Evolve 5 is about $200 more expensive than the Evolve 3, so you have to decide if the heavier flywheel, better display and additional workouts are worth the jump.
What about the Evolve 3 and 5 vs the upper end Elite E7 and E9? Those models are built more for performance, so if you are more serious about your workouts or just want the best in the series, then definitely take a look at the Elite models as well.
As we mentioned, the Elite Series does not fold, so that's something to take into consideration. But they do offer the heaviest flywheels, heavier max weight capacities, and are larger than any of the the other Horizon ellipticals. So they are more commercial-grade if that is something you are looking for.
The main reason that you might choose the Elite series over the Evolve 3 or 5 is the fact that the E7 and E9 are the only elliptical that have incline capability. That's something that is very appealing, as you can ramp up your cardio as well as target additional lower body muscles when you employ incline.
The Elite Series also offers better consoles, with the top of the line E9 offering a touch screen with Virtual Active on-board destination videos.
So to sum up, all of the Horizon ellipticals are good choices depending on what your needs are. The Evolve 3 and 5 are going to be great for those who want a compact/foldable machine, and don't necessarily need a higher-grade, heavier elliptical, or the incline capability.
For moderate use in a home gym by 1-2 people, the Evolve 3 or 5 will be perfectly fine. For heavier use, and for incline, take a look at the Elite Series.
We definitely like the new Horizon Evolve 3 as they pack a lot of features into it for the price. You get a large assortment of built in workouts, it's very easy to assemble and fold up for storage and the motion even at the higher resistance levels is smooth and feels very natural.
We love the tracking capability of ViaFit as it syncs well with the fitness apps that we like to use. Passport is very cool as well, although we wish there were more locations built into it. You need to add locations if you want something besides Italy and the Southwest.
All in all, this is a solid elliptical machine and well worth the money. It does not have incline however, so if that's an important element for you take a look at their Elite models, which offer up to 10 degrees of incline as well as additional features that might appeal to you.