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Schwinn AD2, AD4, AD6, or Evo Comp? Which to Buy?

Planning to start getting fit with an exercise program? An exercise bike is a good consideration. The exercise bike or stationary bike became popular in both gyms and homes way before the first wave of high-tech exercise gadgets were even invented. Even today, the exercise bike is still one of the best choices available to you if you want to get fit. An exercise bike is a good choice for starters because it is easy to use as well as enjoyable. It is also especially ideal for people who want to exercise but have problems in their backs, knees, or joints. Moreover, when the weather is not favorable, you can still exercise with the stationary bike because it was built to be used indoors.

Another factor that makes it good is that you can use it at home in the absence of a gym membership. You can exercise while watching television. You can use it at any time of the day, rain or shine. There is a good amount of convenience and freedom so it’s very easy to motivate yourself to exercise. Now that you have decided to get an exercise bike, you realize the options turn out to be very vast to the point that they are overwhelming. How do you figure out which one to buy?

Well then, here’s one of the good choices: the Schwinn Airdyne.

Discover Best Exercise Bike: Ultimate Schwinn Airdyne Guide!

Schwinn AD2 AD4 AD6 or Airdyne Evo Comp

   

Updated August 2013: Currently Available Models are Schwinn AD2 and AD6

What is Schwinn Airdyne?

Schwinn Airdyne

Schwinn AD2

The Schwinn Airdyne is a series of exercise bike models that redefines this type of exercise equipment. It is defined as “smart.” Its workings revolve around wind resistance. The smart thing about this is that wind resistance is exponential. If you pedal harder, the wind resistance increases. Thus, you get the right exercise level whether you are a beginner or an experienced athlete.

The Airdyne series operates on the patented Schwinn Fitness air resistance system. As described above, this provides a workout level based on exponential resistance. The workout level is directly proportional to how hard you pedal. This system has the Airdyne flywheel which provides the resistance smoothly while having the added benefit of cooling you while you’re in your workout. This makes Airdyne ideal for both fitness and rehabilitative purposes.

Another patented technology applied in this series is the dual-action design. This total body ergonometer provides a synchronized, full-body workout while also allowing a separate workout for your lower or upper body.

The equipment is also fitted with an on-board computer. An LCD display shows time, distance, calories, RPMs, as well as resistance level which serves as feedback so you know in real-time how you are progressing. There is also an optional heart rate monitor available. You can set the computer for various elevations to achieve a very accurate workload/exercise level in line with the air density at different altitudes.

The Airdyne also comes with a drive train that meets the strenuous requirements equal to that of road bike chain life. The sealed cartridge bearings provide a smooth ride as well as reliability and added life span.

The bike will not be difficult to move around because it is fitted with transport wheels. Putting it in storage or taking it out for use is very simple.

Why Are Schwinn Airdyne Bikes Popular?

The combination of the features described above gives the Airdyne certain characteristics that delight users.

Infinite Resistance Levels

First and foremost, the Airdyne offers infinite resistance levels. Unlike conventional stationary bikes that use magnetic systems, the resistance automatically changes depending on the speed and magnitude of your pedaling. This makes it feel as though you are actually biking on the road.

Reliable and Durable

Many users also praise the bike’s reliability and durability. There are owners who report having used it regularly for over 12 years without any issues. This reliability is supported by an impressive warranty – 30 years on the bike’s frame, 3 years for the electronics and other parts, and a year for the labor and wear elements.

Easy to Use

Users also like its easy usability. Much of this is due to not having to adjust resistance settings manually. Plus, the air system doubles as a cooling mechanism while exercising. The seat is relatively comfortable. Many users find setting the machine up fairly simple.

Stable

Many also like the bike’s stability. Many report that the bike remains sturdy and stable even with prolonged use.

Smooth Operation

Users love how smooth the machine’s operation is. The operation noise is also fairly low. It is nigh unnoticeable, which means it won’t disturb you if you are working out while watching TV or listening to music.

Versatile

Versatility is another characteristic that users find desirable in the Airdyne. One can exercise with a full-body workout or choose to just exercise the upper body or the lower body.

Usage Range

The Airdyne is recommended for a wide range of uses from general to specialized ones. It is recommended for general fitness, heart rate training, low impact exercise, performance training, weight loss training, physical therapy, and knee rehabilitation among others.

Which Schwinn Airdyne Bike Should You Choose?

Now that you see the benefits users enjoy from the Airdyne, are you ready to buy one for yourself? It is advisable to first look into the factors you need to consider when choosing a model of exercise bike to buy.

Statistically speaking, there’s a good chance that the exercise bike is the first exercise equipment you will acquire. What you want to be sure is that you get one that is useful and will provide you good value for your money. You would not want to end buying anything that will just become an overpriced clothes rack.

Fitness Goals and User Fitness Level

This is important to think about, but with the flexibility of exercise bike usage, it can fit pretty much any fitness goal and fitness level of the user. A very strong point of exercise bikes is that they don’t have any learning curve. Can you sit down and pedal? Then you can use it. Even people with a missing limb can use it to exercise the other three. Nevertheless, it is important to know the areas that it excels in. Before anything else, this is a cardiovascular exercise machine. This is very good for those looking to burn calories, lose some weight, or improve cardiovascular performance. Make it a part of a program with the training goals of high intensity aerobic and the machine really excels. You should be aware that the stationary bike is not a substitute for weight or resistance training, but it can provide training for anaerobic systems. While you can’t really expect huge muscle gains, you can achieve some toning in the upper body, particularly the triceps, shoulders, forearms, biceps, lats, and chest.

Location

Where do you plan to use the exercise bike? The Airdyne is very good for use at home. If you have a home gym, then the Airdyne would be a natural addition. You can easily move the bike around so you can also use it in your living room as long as there is enough space. The cost and durability of the Airdyne are noteworthy. It can last long with only minimal maintenance. It may very well be the most cost-effective exercise equipment you will ever get. You have to be aware of the Airdyne’s fan and operation sound for location considerations. The fan consistently blows while exercising and while that may be good because it cools you, it will mess around with light materials such as paper on desks that are in the immediate area.

Remember that the machine will have operation sounds which can be disturbing depending on where you are using it. Also keep in mind that the harder you pedal, the louder the sound gets.

Budget

Of course, you have to put this in consideration. The different Airdyne models have different prices which may or may not fit your budget. It’s easy enough to spot the ones you can afford.

The Schwinn Airdyne Models

Now, let us take a comprehensive look at the different models of Schwinn Airdyne. This guide will discuss 4 of them: AD2, AD4, AD6, and Evo Comp.

Airdyne Model
ImageSchwinn AD2Schwinn AD4Schwinn Airdyne Evo CompSchwinn AD6
Resistance LevelsInfinite Infinite Infinite Infinite
Resistance SystemAirAirAirAir
Drive SystemSingle stage-belt driveDual-stage chain and belt drive Dual-stage Super Torque belt drivesDual-stage Super Torque belt drives
Number of Workout Programs-22-
Heart Ratenoyesyesyes
LCD Displayyesyesyesyes
2 AA Batteriesyesyesyesyes
SeatPaddedExtra-padded, oversizedExtra-padded, oversizedExtra-padded, oversized
Dimensions (L x W x H)58 x 25 x 4850 x 23 x 4850 x 23 x 4850 x 26 x 51
Weight (lbs)9696104115
Frame Warranty5 Years30 Years30 Years15 Years
Parts Warranty1 Year3 Years3 Years3 Years
Electronics Warranty1 Year3 Years3 Years2 Years
Labor Warranty90 Days1 Year1 Year6 Months
Wear Items Warranty90 Days1 Year1 Year-
Max User Weight (lbs)250300300300

Schwinn Airdyne AD2 Review

Schwin Airdyne 2

Schwin Airdyne 2

Over thirty years ago, Schwinn broke new ground in fitness with their wind resistance technology. The AD2 is the newest member of the Airdyne bike family. It is designed to be compact but powerful that it can meet and exceed a user’s expectations.

What you’ll love owning an AD2

  • The AD2 enploys the BioDyne™ Performance that enables simultaneous arm and leg motion to emulate the natural movement of the human body as accurately as possible. The fan design offers infinite resistance levels that adjust automatically depending on how hard and fast the user pedals. It is equipped with transport wheels that allow convenient movement from place to place and effortless storage between usages.
  • The AD2 lets the user monitor his or her exercise progress through BioConnect Feedback. An LCD display shows distance, RPMs, speed, calories, and time.
  • The AD2 is compact with dimensions of 58 x 25 x 48 inches and a weight of 95.5 pounds. It has a pretty good maximum user weight capacity at 250 pounds. It is equipped with a padded seat.
  • The warranty is as follows: five years for the frame, one year for both parts and electronics, and 90 days for both labor and wear items.
  • The AD2 has a listed price of $599 but you can get one for as low as $300.
  • Reported user experience for the AD2 is generally positive. Users find it effective because it enables full body workout but still provides the option for exclusive lower or upper body workout.
  • It is easy to assemble. An individual can assemble it in thirty minutes. The instructions for assembly are clear and have illustrations.
  • The digital display is very user-friendly. It is simple and a user can identify the displays easily.
  • The fan system helps you stay cool while working out.
  • The AD2 is relatively quiet.
  • It is fairly lightweight, takes up only a small space, and there are no electrical connections required.

What you might not like

  • The fan design can be a double-edged sword. Although you enjoy infinite resistance levels, you cannot adjust it manually. All you can do to increase resistance is to pedal faster.
  • While there is an option to work out only the lower body, there are no handlebars where you can rest your hands on.
  • The AD2 doesn’t have a water bottle holder.
  • The durability is not as high as other Airdyne models, but still considerably good.
  • Many users find the seat uncomfortable – not very good for long exercise durations. It takes a while getting used to it. Most don’t come around and just buy a separate seat pad.

In short

Overall, the AD2 is a very nice piece of equipment acquirable at a fairly low price and capable of performing really well. You just might need to buy a separate seat pad.

Schwinn Airdyne AD4 Review

Schwinn Airdyne 4

Schwinn Airdyne 4

The AD4 is another Airdyne model which means that, just like the AD2, it also runs on the air resistance system. It enjoys a compact design and measures almost the same as the AD2. This classic has remained virtually unchanged for over 20 years.

  • The AD4 has a larger flywheel compared to the AD2, but the overall dimensions are roughly the same. It is designed with the dual-action arm handles that enable full body workout, synchronizing your arm and leg movement that emulates natural motion very well.
  • Being unchanged speaks positively for the AD4. This means the functionality has been very efficient and effective.
  • The AD4 has dimensions of 50 x 23 x 48 inches and weighs 96 pounds. The maximum user weight capacity is at 300 pounds. It comes with an extra-padded, oversized seat.
  • Warranty for the AD4 is: thirty years for the frame, three years for the parts and electronics, one year for labor and wear items.
  • The listed price is $750, but you may find ones that you can buy for anywhere between $500 and $700.

Positive Users experience with the AD4

  • Its larger flywheel provides smoother operation.
  • There is also no need to manually tweak settings because the resistance adjusts accordingly depending on how fast you are pedaling. In other words, you find your exercise level naturally.
  • There is a cooling effect while you exercise because of the wind caused by the fan.
  • This system also lets the AD4 last longer compared to bikes with other resistance systems. Mechanical ones wear out fast while magnetic ones stop working in case the electronic heads cease to function.
  • Users love the dual workout system because they don’t have to buy additional pieces of equipment to work both the upper and lower body.
  • The AD4 has a great durability and reliability backed up with a great warranty. It is also very stable when in use. The AD4 is built with stamped and welded steel with the chain enclosed in a safety equipped with a safety lock to prevent unnecessary movements of the parts when you move the machine around.
  • The console of the bike displays numerous important data that helps you track your workout through an easy-to-use interface.

Drawbacks

  • Again, the air system has its benefits and drawbacks. It can be quite noisy when you are pedaling fast and the wind will send light materials flying around.
  • While you can let go of the handlebars if you want to just work out the lower body, they keep on moving as you pedal. This can be distracting. There are no hand rests as well.
  • A common complaint with the AD4 is the lack of instructions. You can search for them over the internet but it can be a bit annoying if you want to start using the bike right away.
  • Some users find it difficult to assemble the AD4.

Summary

The AD4 is a solid workout machine and holds up to its classic status. It is a pretty good investment for your workout needs. It has some drawbacks, but they are generally manageable.

Schwinn Airdyne AD6

Schwinn Airdyne 6

Schwinn Airdyne 6

This model is basically an update of the AD4. It gets all the features of its predecessor, mainly the dual-action and the air resistance systems. The difference is that it gets a more modern styling and some new features.

  • The AD6 is dubbed by many as the perfect cardio equipment. It allows you to work out the upper and lower body at the same time or independently. Again, it offers infinite resistance with the air resistance system.
  • Compared to the AD4, the AD6 is bigger and heavier. It takes a bigger space but provides added stability.
  • Another difference is that utilizes a belt drive rather than a chain.
  • The machine measures 50 x 26 x 51 inches and weighs 115 pounds. The seat is extra-padded oversized. Maximum user weight capacity is 300 pounds.
  • The AD6 comes with a warranty of 15 years for the frame, three years for the parts, 2 years for the electronics, and six months for labor.
  • The AD6 is listed at a price of $999, but there are available deals that range from $600-$800.

This model receives generally positive feedback from consumers.

  • The users enjoy the intelligence added into the bike. The on-board computer provides substantial feedback on every important data with your workout. It shows you time, workload level, distance, calories burned, RPM, and heart rate in an easy to read layout through an LCD screen. The console constantly shows these metrics so there’s no more waiting for readouts.
  • The seat is reported to be pretty comfortable which allows long workout durations without unnecessary strain.
  • The wind direction caused by the fan system is improved. The previous models blow the wind directly into the face which could be annoying for some people. The AD6 doesn’t have that problem.
  • The pedals are also bigger and come with straps. This offers a more comfortable fit. There is also a foot rest where you can put your feet when working the upper body exclusively. The seat height is also easily adjustable. The AD6 also features a water bottle holder.
  • Assembly is easy and can be done by a single person by simply following the illustrated instructions. The assembly can be done in 30 minutes to under an hour.
  • Like other Airdyne bikes, the AD6 is very easy to use and store.
  • The sturdiness, reliability, and stability of the AD6 are top of the line. Backed up with a strong warranty, the machine can last for decades with only minimal maintenance. You can also be sure that it stays in position while you exercise.
  • The belt drive means the AD6 operates more quietly than both the AD2 and the AD4.

The AD6 and its cons

  • Like with the AD4, the handlebars continue to move even if you’re only working out your lower body. There is nothing to rest your hands on which can be quite a nuisance for some people.
  • When doing an upper body exclusive workout, the resistance feels tough.
  • It can be hard to move the machine around on carpeted surfaces because the wheels are rather small.
  • While the LCD shows information all at once, there are situations when it is hard to read because it is a little dark, has low contrast, and the glare level is a bit high.

At a glance

The AD6 is a compact piece of exercise equipment with an elegant look. It is a really good update of a classic which offers a high level of efficiency. It is pretty solid with only a few hitches that are at mostly just annoyances instead of serious drawbacks.

The Classic Schwinn Airdyne Evo Comp

Schwinn Evo CompThe Evo Comp also runs on the air resistance system carried by its AD brethren. By now, you already know its advantages. This model also enables full body work out, or independent upper or lower body workout.

  • It shares the same dimensions as the AD4 – 50 x 23 x 48 inches. However, it is a bit heavier at 104 pounds. The maximum user weight capacity is the same as the AD4 and AD6 which is 300 pounds.
  • The Evo Comp comes with a warranty of 30 years on the frame, three years on the parts and electronics, and one year on labor and wear items.
  • The listed price of the Evo Comp is $900.

The Evo Comp shares a lot of the pros of the previously discussed models and..

  • A difference would be that it has a lower center of gravity compared to the other models which some people prefer.
  • The model is pretty sturdy and has a very good warranty. The seat is comfortable and the assembly instructions are relatively easy to follow.

There are a few points that give the Evo Comp an edge over its AD brethren.

  • It operates more quietly than either the AD2 or the AD4 because it has a belt drive system (similar to that found on the AD6).
  • The Evo Comp has updated technology in the bearings and related parts which adds longevity to an already great standard.
  • The shape of the fans in the Evo Comp is designed so that it doesn’t suffer from drafting effect experienced in the other models. It also doesn’t blow the wind directly in the user’s face.

Overall

Overall, the Evo Comp is a pretty good bike and well worth the price.

Comparison Summary

Now the 4 Schwinn Airdyne models will be compared against each other.

Price

First comes the price. Listed prices: AD2 – $500; AD4 – $750; AD6 – $999; Evo Comp – $900. One can see that the lowest cost is with AD2. If you are deciding solely on budget, the AD2 would be a fitting choice.

Performance

  • All models have good performance but the Evo Comp has an edge over the others because it eliminates the drafting effect.
  • All models offer independent and simultaneous upper and lower body workout. With this regard, any of the four will do.

Size

With sizes, the AD4 and Evo Comp are tied in terms of having the smallest dimensions.

Noise

If noise is a big concern for you, then your choice is between the AD6 and the Evo Comp.

Final Thoughts Before You Buy

Before making your purchase, it would be good to write down all your considerations and arrange priorities (after setting your budget, of course). Any of the Schwinn Airdyne models is a good investment as exercise equipment. The only thing left is to choose one that would fit your goals and priorities. It is also a good measure to check out reviews from people who actually bought the products or ask personal acquaintances so you can get substantial insights.

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