Schwinn 800IC review: well-made Peloton reciprocating exercise bike



Schwinn 800IC review TL; DR: A capable indoor bike that delivers a premium home workout experience for the masses. [Please note: this exercise bike is sold as Schwinn IC4 in the US/AUS]

I know it’s terrible that today you can’t read a review that doesn’t start with “this is a great Peloton alternative” or “[product] is the peloton of [product category]”. Concrete example, the title of our journal Hydrow says that it is the” answer of the world of rowers to Peloton “.

The problem is, the Schwinn 800IC is Actually a decent alternative to the Peloton bike, so there’s no way to avoid making comparisons to the Big P in this review. The Schwinn 800IC is one of the best exercise bikes I have tried recently. The Peloton Bike +’s huge 24-inch display might be missing, but it has its own merits and is also a lot, a lot cheaper than a new Peloton bike.

Schwinn 800IC review: price and availability

The Schwinn 800IC is available for purchase through Fitness Superstore in the UK and from Schwinn’s own online store in the US for a recommended retail price of £ 949 / $ 999.

A bit confusing, the model number for countries with a 110V electrical outlet (eg USA) is the Schwinn IC4 Bike. Take this into account.

The JRNY subscription is required to access all aspects of the programming.

The Schwinn 800IC is also compatible with the Explore the World app, Zwift and the Peloton app. Subscription fees may apply.

Schwinn 800IC review: what is the difference between the 800IC and the IC8?

Connoisseurs may notice that the Schwinn 800IC looks suspiciously like another Schwinn model, the IC8. This is because the Schwinn IC8 is essentially the same indoor bike, except for the connectivity of the Bowflex JRNY app.

The Schwinn IC800 has access to the JRNY software which is now integrated into the bike. You can access a personal trainer program directly from the app which connects to the bike and records your efforts directly in the app (more details in a moment).

In summary, if you already have a Schwinn IC8, it’s probably not worth upgrading to the IC800, unless you are really keen to use the JRNY app.

A close-up view of the steering wheel and pedals of the Schwinn 800IC

(Image credit: Avenir)

Schwinn 800IC review: design and build quality

Assembling exercise bikes or any type of bulkier gym equipment can be a real hassle. Not all manufacturers are as nice as NordicTrack who delivers and assembles their products, which is exactly the experience I had when reviewing the NordicTrack RW900.

That said, the Schwinn IC800 isn’t the worst when it comes to assembly. The screws fit well into the holes and the overall build quality is amazing. It took me less than half an hour to assemble the bike, which really isn’t that long at all. All the tools needed for assembly are included in the box, although I used my own wrenches and allen keys as I have them.

The build quality of the Schwinn IC800 is excellent – the weld of the tubes radiates strength and the tubes themselves look smooth and well constructed. Peripherals, such as the double bottle holder and tablet holder, have an interesting textured cover, further enhancing the quality of the bike.

The Schwinn IC800 is an indoor bike that can be used for spin style lessons. It has a large flywheel in the front and an ergonomic handle that allows multiple gripping positions. One of my favorite details on the bike was the backlit LCD metric console which is gorgeous for such a console.

Best of all, it displays the magnetic resistance level (there are 100 of them) which is great because you don’t have to guess at what level you left it on the last workout. Since everything is digital, you can also view this information on the tablet or TV you use to stream JRNY workouts.

The Schwinn IC800 has double-sided pedals (SPD clips / toe cages), so if you have cycling shoes lying around you can use them for IC800 workouts. Of course, the toe cage side of the pedals also allows you to use training shoes for pedaling, depending on your preference.

close-up view of the Schwinn 800IC control panel

(Image credit: Avenir)

Schwinn 800IC review: performance and driving experience

Although we’re halfway through this review, I have to admit: I don’t particularly enjoy training on stationary bikes. I never really agreed to do virtual classes and trainers trying to be motivating on a screen; I don’t need that kind of motivation.

However, after installing the Schwinn 800IC, I found myself wanting to get in the saddle and ride. Stranger still, I ended up making a habit of jumping on the bike in the morning, after waking up, still on an empty stomach, until I burned 300 calories, which took me around 20- 30 minutes. Every morning.

It was during the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, so after setting up my phone and heart rate monitor to record my workout, I pulled out my tablet to watch the Olympic highlights from the day before.

It probably helped a lot that training on the Schwinn 800IC was an almost silent process, so even though I was sweating at half past six in the living room in the morning, the rest of the apartment could still sleep uninterrupted.

The flywheel was silky smooth and the digital resistance button also worked great. The seat was comfortable, at least by indoor cycling standards. It’s not one of those wide, padded seats, but it’s certainly comfortable enough for the duration of workouts.

As mentioned above, there are 100 resistance levels, but I didn’t go over 25 in my workouts (I mostly did low to moderate intensity rides). There is clearly room for improvement here.

Schwinn 800IC saddle close-up view

(Image credit: Avenir)

Schwinn 800IC review: the JRNY app

The JRNY app is relatively new. At least its current iteration, which only launched in February 2021. The updated digital platform has added adaptive workouts and trainer-led videos, the first of which will recommend workouts based on your progress. and your fitness level.

In summary, as long as you record your workouts in the JRNY app (you can use the Schwinn 800IC as a stand-alone exercise bike), the app will recommend workouts that match your training load and type of exercise. preferred workout. It’s not very fancy, but it might help people who need a little more guidance.

The workout library is not as extensive as those found in similar apps (eg Peloton, iFit); not yet anyway. I also don’t think there are any live workouts (from what I can tell), but some on-demand classes are available through the app.

Best of all, thanks to the Schwinn 800IC’s Bluetooth connectivity, you can stream movies and so on in the JRNY app while seeing your stats at the bottom of the screen.

I found it slightly annoying when I opened the app, each time I had to enter the bluetooth setting to connect the heart rate monitor before I started training. When I didn’t, although the bike itself found the device, the app didn’t show my heart rate.

Even stranger was the fact that the bike and the app were showing different calories burned stats, as usual the app caught up to the sensor a little after I started training.

On the plus side, the JRNY app works with multiple Schwinn and Bowflex machines, so if you have an elliptical or treadmill from these brands, you can record all the workouts in one place, which is admittedly handy. .

Schwinn 800IC digital brake knob close-up view

(Image credit: Avenir)

Schwinn 800IC review: verdict

The Schwinn 800IC is a great home gym equipment. It’s sleek, smart, sexy, and it doesn’t cost a lot either, while providing a premium indoor cycling experience.

Of course, it would be better if the bike was equipped with a display and the JRNY app was a bit more meaty. If you prefer the cult vibe of the Peloton ecosystem, you will be disappointed with the Schwinn IC800.

However, if you need a premium exercise bike that allows you to workout indoors without getting in the way of the rest of the house, you’ll love the Schwinn 800IC. It even convinced me, a bodybuilding enthusiast, that indoor cycling can be an enjoyable experience.

Schwinn 800IC review: also consider

I already mentioned the Peloton Bike + in the intro and it would be silly not to mention it here. If you have the money to spend on a Peloton bike, admittedly it will recreate the Peloton riding experience the most. It’s obvious.

The Echelon Smart Connect EX3 is a rugged Peloton alternative for those on a tight budget. It might not have a built-in display, but if you’re happy to stream workouts to your smart TV, you can save a lot of money by getting this smart bike.

Want to train harder? Try the Atom Wattbike. It offers one of the most realistic indoor bike rides (and looks absolutely fabulous doing it).



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