Velocity Fitness Magnetic Rower ReviewThe Velocity Fitness Magnetic Rower (aka Cap Barbell CHR-2001 and Proteus PMR-3000) is one of the ‘best bang for your buck’ magnetic rowers on the market!

Its magnetic resistance design uses a Drum Magnetic Control (DCS) system to provide smooth variable resistance without making any noise.

It’s fairly compact, so it’s ideal for smaller workout areas. Plus it can fold up in seconds to save plenty of additional floor space.

It also comes with a clever backlit fitness monitor that keeps track of workout data and provides plenty of different workout options.

Simply put – it’s a well-rounded rowing machine that’s easy to use and it fits the bill for people of all fitness levels.

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Table of Contents
(click a title to jump ahead!)

1. Resistance Type
2. Monitor/Control Panel
3. Build Quality
4. Comfort
5. Storage
6. Capacity
7. Dimensions
8. Assembly
9. Pros and Cons
10. Consumer Reviews
11. Warranty
12. Price

Resistance Type

The Velocity Fitness Magnetic Rower is a magnetic resistance rowing machine that’s extremely quiet and offers adjustable resistance.

For more information on characteristics of a magnetic resistance rowing machine click here.

It’s equipped with a Drum Magnetic Control (DCS) system, which is essentially just a magnetic braking system.

The benefits of magnetic braking are that when magnets are used to create resistance there is virtually no sound. There is also no surface to surface friction so parts won’t wear out over time.

There are a ton of complex YouTube videos that explain magnetic resistance but this was the best I could find that kept it as simple as possible.

The Velocity rower comes with 8 levels of adjustable resistance. This makes it suitable for people of all fitness levels, from a complete workout newbie to gym enthusiast.

Families of four with varying strength levels were able to use it without any issues, highlighting the versatility of the machine.

The resistance is easily adjusted by pressing the up and down buttons on the fitness monitor to increase or decrease resistance.

In case you didn’t notice in the intro paragraph, this rower is also known as the Cap Barbell CHR-2001 and the Proteus PMR-3000.

I’m not 100% certain why this product has 3 different names but based on my research this is what I think happened:

  • Proteus originally manufactured and sold the product as the PMR-3000 but ended up changing their business model. Instead of manufacturing and selling fitness products, they decided to just make them and sell the “rights” of their products to other companies.
  • Cap Barbell bought the “rights” to the PMR-3000 and rebranded it as the CHR-2001.  As Cap Barbell grew, they decided to start different brand divisions and the cardio division was called Velocity Fitness. Cap Barbell rebranded the rower as the Velocity Fitness Magnetic Rower.

Sorry for going on a tangent there but I know most of you would be curious about the different names for the same rower!

Overall, the resistance on the Velocity Fitness Magnetic Rower is great! It provides a smooth rowing stroke with virtually no sound and no ongoing maintenance issues.

Monitor/Control Panel

Velocity Fitness Magnetic Rower Fitness MonitorThe Velocity Fitness Magnetic Rower comes with a 5-button multi-function fitness monitor that is conveniently located at the base of the rower near the footrests.

It has a large blue backlit LCD display making it easy to read the data from far away and in low-light settings.

The fitness monitor keeps track of important workout data including time, count, distance (in km), calories, stroke/ minutes, watt and pulse.

All the data is shown on the LCD display at the same time and is easy to read since the display is large.

The fitness monitor even has a motion sensor that’s used to detect your actual rowing motion, which is shown as a little graphic on the display.

The monitor is flexible because it doesn’t only count the data from zero to wherever you end up, but it also lets you set a target time, count, distance, or number of calories to burn. Meaning, it counts down from a targeted number you set to zero.

Once you hit your target, the monitor will beep to remind you that you’ve hit your goal.

The rower offers 12 different workout programs, which are controlled through the fitness monitor.

The 12 programs consist of 6 preprogrammed workouts, 1 target heart rate program (based on your desired target heart rate), 4 open slots to customize your own workouts programs, and 1 manual program that allows you to row at your own pace without any restrictions.

Velocity Fitness Magnetic Rower Heart Rate MonitorThe monitor comes with a built-in heart rate receiver that can easily track your heart rate with a chest belt (included).

A user claimed they were able to display their heart rate on the fitness monitor by using a timex heart rate monitor watch. So good news for people who already have a heart rate monitor.

I’ll compile a list of compatible heart rate monitors with the display and update this review.

In addition to monitoring and displaying your heart rate on the LCD monitor, you can also check your pulse recovery rate by pressing the ‘pulse recovery’ button immediately after completing a workout.

This function is helpful because it tells you how long it takes to recover from exercises. The longer it takes the more out of shape you are.

The test lasts for 1 minute and the results are displayed on the monitor.  The addition of a flexible heart rate receiver on the Velocity Rower is a bonus because a lot of rowers in this price range don’t include one.

An AC adapter that plugs into the front of the machine powers the monitor.  Simply plug it in to turn it on and unplug to turn off or it turns off automatically after a few minutes of inactivity.

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Build Quality

Velocity Fitness Magnetic RowerThe Velocity Fitness Magnetic Rower frame is made of sturdy aluminum and the beam is made of anodized aluminum profile with rectangular tubing support.

In other words – it’s made of some durable stuff!

Users have commented that it feels very sturdy and secure. One person even mentioned that the frame feels like it’s made of “heavy steel”.

I’ve reviewed my fair share of rowing machines and I usually see that a rower is classified as “home-use” or “commercial” (for use in health clubs, etc.).

Keep in mind, most rowing machine websites are based in the United States.  For this rower, I had to research internationally under all 3 names because I barely found anything under ‘Velocity Fitness Magnetic Rower’.

When researching under ‘Proteus PMR 3000’, European retailers classified this rower as “for intense home use”.  One website even mentioned that it’s practically durable enough to be used commercially.

To make sure that “for intense home use” wasn’t the same as “basic home use”, I checked other rowers on the same European websites. The cheaper models were classified as “basic home use”.

This validated my point that this machine is engineered to be more durable than your “basic home use” rowing machine.

In addition, this rower has double-bearings, which significantly reduces the wear of the bearings on the machine (usually found in higher-priced machines).

Practically every reviewer mentioned that this machine is whisper quiet and no one mentioned that it made any out of the ordinary squeaking or creaking noises.

Multiple users commented on how they’re able to use the Velocity Rowing Machine in front of the television without having to turn the volume up loud. Some even mentioned they’re able to use it in the same room as others while they were sleeping.

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Velocity Exercise Magnetic RowerThe Velocity Magnetic Rower has a large seat made of polyurethane leather.

Users mentioned the seat was well padded, very comfortable to sit on and glides up and down the seat rail smoothly.

The handles are padded to make for a comfortable grip that doesn’t need rowing gloves.

The footrests are oversized with non-slip material and has velcro straps to secure your feet while rowing.  No issues were reported about the size or quality of the footrests.

Users praised the fluid rowing motion on the rower, saying it is extremely smooth throughout the entire stroke.

This machine is essentially maintenance free and  should operate smoothly for a long time.

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Velocity Fitness Magnetic Rower StorageThe Velocity Rower has the ability to fold upright in seconds after a workout.

Simply remove a knob that secures the seat rail in place, fold the seat rail upright, and reinsert the knob back in place.

When in storage mode, the rower resembles a vacuum and can be easily stored in a closet or in the corner of a room.

It also comes with concealed built-in wheels that make it easy to move around when needed.

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According to Velocity, the weight capacity of this machine is 275 pounds.

The seat rail is fairly long so it should accommodate most users.

Leg inseam length is the most important metric to determine whether a person is too short or too tall for a rowing machine. However, height can be used as a fairly accurate estimate.

Based on my research, if you’re taller than 6’2″ I suggest trying out this rower at a local sports store to ensure it’s compatible for your height.

The rower will be fine for anyone else shorter than this height.

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  • In-Use:
    • 80.3″ x 20.1″ x 25.2″ (L x W x H)
  • Stored/ Folded:
    • 43.3″ x 20.1″ x 54.3″ (L x W x H)
  • Weight: 
    • 75 pounds

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A majority of users mentioned the rower was extremely easy to put together and took them between 10-30 minutes to fully assemble.

After looking at the instruction manual, I saw that there’s not too many loose parts to put together so I understand why people had such an easy time.

The Velocity Rower also comes with all the necessary tools needed for assembly. Excellent for people who don’t have extra tools lying around their homes.

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Pros and Cons


  • Super quiet
  • Smooth, fluid rowing motion
  • Comfortable seat, handles, and footrests
  • 8 different levels of adjustable resistance
  • Backlit fitness monitor with large LCD display comes with plenty of workout options
  • Built-in heart rate receiver with included chest strap to monitor heart rate
  • Durable frame
  • Built with double-bearings which significantly reduces wear of machine (usually found on more expensive machines)
  • Can fold up in seconds to save plenty of floor space
  • Concealed built-in wheels make moving rower simple
  • Easy to assemble


  • Manufacturer’s warranty is not as long as other rowing machines
  • Electrical components always have higher chance of breaking

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Consumer Reviews

Overall users really liked how quiet the Velocity Fitness Magnetic Rower is in addition to the smooth rowing motion and overall comfortability.

Some users complained about electrical malfunctions but were able to sort out the issue through customer service.

Want to know what other consumers said about this rower? See moreVelocity Fitness Magnetic Rower reviews here.

Average Rating: 4.4

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  • Parts/ Labor: 1 -year

I called the manufacturer to verify the warranty period and they confirmed.

The representative I spoke to also mentioned if there are any repairs that need to be done on the machine (that can’t be fixed by simply sending a replacement part) during the warranty period, the rower needs to be sent to the manufacturer and the shipping cost has to be paid by the customer.

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Velocity Fitness Magnetic Rower Price

I periodically check prices on all rowing machines I review including the Velocity Magnetic Rower and Amazon tends to have the lowest price.

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I hope you enjoyed my Velocity Fitness Magnetic Rower review! If you have any questions please leave them in the comment section below.

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