The Best Smith Machines

The benefits of using a smith machine are vast. What makes this apparatus so attractive is that you can perform safe power lifts by yourself. Built-in spotters will lock the bars should you experience any difficulties in your workout.

You can be confident that you won’t suffer injuries. The types of Smith Machine Exercises vary, from Squats to Barbell Rows, Bench Press to Shoulder Press, and so many more. In our review of the 5 Best Smith Machines, we aim to help you choose a model that suits your personal needs.

The 5 Best Smith Machines:

Below we list and review the 5 best smith machines currently for sale online.

1. Deltech Fitness Linear Bearing Smith Machine

Deltech Fitness Linear Bearing Smith Machine
DimensionsH81 xW86 x L63 inches (includes overhang of barbell)
Weight Capacity700 lbs
Machine Weight276 lbs
Deltech Fitness Linear Bearing Smith Machine Specs

A machine constructed with solid steel 12 and 14-inch tubular bars. Finished with a protective white powder coating, this is a tough frame and built to last. The addition of rubber feet adds to the stability. High-quality cables on the strengthened pulleys, ensure the Lat attachment is secure for years to come. Enjoy many types of Smith Machine exercises, from squats to barbell rows, along with a solid chin-up bar. The 4 linear ball bearings add to the precision of smooth gliding bars.

With bar catch rods set at 6-inch gaps, it means you are safe to do your workout alone. Extra storage pegs also mean you can save space as you accommodate your heavy plates out of harm’s reach. The provided standard bar is 86-inches wide and weighs in at 70lbs. You can also use Olympic plates on this Smith Machine.

Deltech is so confident in their basic Smith Machine frame that they give you a lifetime warranty on it. They also sell bench presses separately if you wish to add one.

2. Commercial Home Gym – G12 Smith Machine

Commercial Home Gym - G12 Smith Machine
DimensionsW79 x D49 x H90 inches(includes overhang of barbell) (height adjustable)
Weight Capacity770 lbs bar990 lbs rack2000 lbs cables
Machine Weight800 lbs
Commercial Home Gym – G12 Smith Machine Specs

A free-standing monster of a Smith Machine. Giving you the possibility of over 300 various exercises. It has 9-in-1 multi-functionalities, such as dip and chin-up stations. Add to that, 2-way grip pull up bar, leg press, low row, power rack, J-hooks for dips and so much more.

The wider cage offers excellent stability. Twin pulley cables are used for the 2 x 80kg integrated stack weights. Whether you prefer stack weights or barbell plate weights, you can use both on this machine. Provided, is also a 50mm steel barbell, but plates are sold separately. Use the 2 safety spotter bars if you’re working out alone.

The Smith machine frame has 12 adjustable heights. The pulleys have 16 adjustable heights with 1:1 ratio. There is no bench but you can add an independent one. There are plenty of options for exercising. This Smith machine comes supplied with weight stacks and 6 storage pegs for Olympic plates and Olympic lock collars. Plus, barbell, leg press, lat pulldown bar with knee support, core trainer, spotting arms with rubber inserts, and much, much more. Plus, you’ll get a workout chart that includes 35 exercises.

3 Force USA G3 All-In-One Trainer and Smith Machine

Force USA G3 All-In-One Trainer And Smith Machine
DimensionsW80 x D55 x H87 inches
Weight Capacity772 lbs Machine 2000 lbs cables
Machine Weight992 lbs
Force USA G3 All-In-One Trainer And Smith Machine Specs

Looking for strength training or bodybuilding? With over 75 exercises on offer, this compact Smith machine has a 5-in-1 system for a powerful workout. It has a plate weight machine as well as a pulley system which only uses Olympic type weights. As an all-in-one trainer, it also has a power rack and a chin-up station. This is a Smith machine that acts as a core and functional trainer. The pulley ratio is 2:1 at a load of 100lbs and a resistance of 50lbs.

There are so many extras making this Smith machine value for money. From cambered and straight bars to a multi-grip chin-up bar. Safety spotters and J-hooks. Plus, lots of storage holders for barbells, plate weights, and cables. With an ankle strap and nylon-stirrup handles, along with pull-down ropes for triceps. You can also buy optional attachments, such as a lat pull-down seat, leg press, and extra stability bars. The options are many for personalizing this solid Smith machine to your own needs.

Quad bearing rollers allow for smooth movement during use. The heavy-gauge, rolled steel tubing lends a high quality to a Smith machine built to last.

4. Yukon Fitness CPR 143 Caribou III Smith machine

Yukon Fitness CPR 143 Caribou III Smith Machine
DimensionsW48 x D68 x H82 inches
Weight Capacity800 lbs
Machine Weight257 lbs.
Yukon Fitness CPR 143 Caribou III Smith Machine

This solid welded structure contains an advanced Smith carriage. It allows the bushings to glide smoothly on chrome rods, creating a piston action. With a flick of the wrist it is simple to use the locks on the safety spotter bars.

Whilst this model does have a chin-up bar, it comes as the rack only. Many optional accessory mounts can be added. The bar is for standard plates, but Olympic bar adapters are provided. All plates must be bought separately. Inbuilt, is a dip station mount, as well as dual bar holders.

If purchased for private use, this solid Smith machine carries a lifetime guarantee for many of the parts. This warranty is limited to commercial users.

5. Body-Solid Powerline Smith Machine System

Body-Solid Powerline Smith Machine System
DimensionsW76 x D45 x H85 inches
Weight Capacity400 lbs
Machine Weight427 lbs 
Body-Solid Powerline Smith Machine System

Patented nylon bushings ensure smooth sliding bars and pullies. This is a safe exercising system with 14 locking point spotters. With steel construction, it makes for a sturdy, long-lasting frame, finished with a diamond-plate footplate.

The 1-inch bar takes standard plates, not provided. Optional Olympic adapter sleeves are available, also not provided. 

There’s a lot in this package. Let’s start with a multi-position bench, 150lbs weight stack, and various stations for pec, preacher curl, lat row, and even leg developer.

Enjoy a variety of over 50 exercises, from bench, shoulder, military, incline or decline, and calf presses. Or, seated or standing calf raises, wide or close grip front lat pulls, shrugs, sit-ups, squats and so much more for a total body workout.

The non-commercial warranty, for the owner only, is 10-years for the frame and 12-months for parts.

Picking The Right Smith Machine

Safety is a most crucial element when lifting heavy loads. Make sure that you know the capacity weight rating, so as not to cause damage to the Smith, or injury to yourself. If the Smith machine you prefer, doesn’t come with a bench, then you are going to need one for certain exercises. Make sure the bars glide smoothly before you buy.

Quality bushings prevent juddering movements and the mechanism will work better if linear ball bearings are used. The cable design helps to isolate certain muscles, though your movement is limited. On a Smith, you will lift in an up and down motion, which is different from free lifting.

Smith machines come in all shapes sizes. All Smith’s have one thing in common, they make excellent space-saving workout apparatus. With so many exercising possibilities, the Smith machine is an all-in-one solution. There should be no need to buy any other large gym equipment if you have one of these in your home gym. 

Smith machine FAQs 

Is the Smith machine dangerous?

The Smith machine does not cause muscle weakness and imbalance if used in the correct way. It does have limited movement that isolates certain muscles. Other muscles you can exercise in other ways. It’s perfect for beginners, with the added support of locking point spotters to avoid injury.

What muscle does the Smith machine work?

This depends on which parts of the Smith machine you use. Using the whole machine allows you to complete an entire body workout. The choices are many, such as exercising shoulders, arms, chest, back, legs and core. Use the Smith machine to build up muscle or repair injured muscle. Or, use it to maintain bodybuilding and strength training.

How much weight should you use on a Smith machine?

The counterbalance of a Smith machine can reduce the weight of a standard barbell between 10-20 lbs. This is due to the mechanism of the cable system.

Although, this difference has little effect if heavier weights, such as 400 lbs, can be added. The bars can weigh anything between 15-45 lbs but it dependents on the model of the Smith machine.

How to use a Smith machine?

Always start with lower weights until you become used to the counterbalance mechanism. Don’t lock your arms or legs on a Smith machine as this is bad for joints. Also, avoid deep squats on the machine as this can also put strain on joints, due to the limited motion. Use the built in spotter for bench presses, keeping yourself safe.

If it doesn’t have a bench already, then using a low bench for certain exercises is advised. Work the deltoids with a shoulder press. For the arms you could do incline push ups. The lower you set the bar, the better the challenge. For a full body workout, lock the bar a couple of feet from the ground and perform decline push ups. The back squat will strengthen the glutes, quads, and your core.

Click here if you want to know more about how to use a Smith machine.

Conclusion

Some fitness fans do not recommend the use of a Smith machine. They question whether the assisted mechanisms hinders rather than improve muscle development. In contrast, many advise that, when used correctly, a Smith machine is as good as any other gym equipment for bodybuilding fitness.

The Smith machine v squat rack does indeed differ. For instance, the bar weighs around 20 lbs on the machine, but 45 lbs on free weights. The solution is to allow for the differences in your calculations of the load. By far, the Smith machine is much safer, with the addition of inbuilt spotters to avoid injury.

When comparing the Smith machine vs power rack, again, the Smith is much safer. Though the power rack will give you more freedom of movement, it only means that you’re working on different muscles. 

Don’t’ be influenced by those who argue that lifting with the help of a machine is cheating. There are many world-class lifters who use Smith machines, to workout. Follow the link to watch how Jay Cutler trains on one.

Smith machines, along with other gym equipment, have their place in any training regime. They’re perfect for beginners, reducing the risk of injury. And, they’re perfect for seasoned weight trainers too. As we have shown that Jay Cutler incorporates one into his varied workout. 

ALL gym equipment offers some form of help in training. That is the very nature of the Smith machine, It is designed for exactly that reason. The reason it has grown in popularity is that it can give you so many possibilities for training. It is ideal for any who wish to live a healthy lifestyle, keeping fit, and maintaining that fitness. It’s a machine that lives on

What Is The Best Smith machine?

All the Smith machines we’ve reviewed are worthy of a mention. There is though, one real monster that stands out from the crowd. This is the Force USA G3 All-in-One Trainer. It’s a Smith machine that can transform a room in your home, into a gym in an instant. You can even buy more add on extras to personalize this model.

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