Choosing between the Concept2 Model D vs. the Concept2 Model E may be one of the hardest decisions in the world!
Ok, obviously not true but still very difficult.
It’s never an easy decision to narrow down your choices when making a big-ticket purchase such as a rowing machine.
It’s even more difficult when the two items are very similar!
When comparing the Concept2 Model D vs. E you will see a lot of similarities but there are some key differences.
In this article, I will breakdown the major similarities and differences between both Concept2 rowing machines.
You will then be able to answer the question: Which is better, the Model D or Model E?
Concept2 Model D vs. E
Comparing these two rowing machines is more difficult because of the vast similarities between the two rowers.
When looking at them you may think, “wow these look pretty much the same. Why then is the Model E considered an upgrade of the Model D?”
It’s a good question and one that will be answered in this article.
The first major difference is the biggest difference. Price. The Model E cost about 20% more than the Model D.
While this may seem like a big deal, I believe it is only a small factor in the comparison. When making a purchase that will last you a lifetime, marginal cost difference should not be the deciding factor.
In other words, just don’t pick the model with the lowest price tag! Try to pick the rower that best fits your needs.
So ask yourself these two questions when reading the comparison of the Concept2 Model D vs. E:
- Should I pay extra because I need the additional features on the Concept2 Model E?
- Does the Concept2 Model D have all the features I need?
Overall, it will be a tough decision but I will break down the similarities and differences below and then give my recommendation.
Concept2 Model D
The Concept2 Model D is a commercial grade air-resistance rowing machine made by Concept2.
Concept2 is one of the most respected brands in the rowing industry.
It’s built tough and is commonly used in commercial gyms and boat houses by people of all fitness levels. Children, beginners, athletes, and Olympians all use the Concept2 Model D.
It is also ideal for home use because it has a storage feature that practically cuts its working footprint in half and has attached wheels that make it easy to move.
The rowing motion mimics rowing outdoors on water and is as smooth as it gets. But don’t confuse smooth with easy!
It can be as difficult or as easy as you want because the resistance automatically adjusts to your rowing intensity.
In addition, the rower comes with a feature that allows you to adjust the feel of the rowing stroke by adjusting the amount of air that goes into the flywheel housing (similar to adjusting gears on a bicycle).
Fully equipped with a top-notch performance monitor that not only track various fitness data but also tracks your heart rate, lets you play games, lets you upload your fitness data to an online logbook, and even teaches you how to row with proper form.
People of all shapes and sizes (up to 500 pounds) can use this machine with confidence and it’s backed by a solid warranty.
For more information read my in-depth review here. I go into great detail about all the pros and cons of the Concept2 Model D.
Concept2 Model E
Ok, now for the Concept2 Model E quick review.
Uhhhh….damn it is exactly the same as what you just read for the Model D. Literally everything I just wrote about the Model D can be said for the Model E.
Look at the pictures, don’t they look the same? Ok, well one is black and one is grey but you can get the Model D and Model E in both colors.
Other than that they are almost identical. There are only a few slight differences such as:
- Seat height
- Monitor arm
- Chain housing
I break down the full differences below.
Similarities Between the Concept2 D vs. E
NOTE: The items listed below are exactly the same on both machines.
- PM5 monitor and all computer features
- Mimics outdoor rowing
- Overall length: 96.0”
- Width: 24.0”
- Inseam length: 48.0”
- Extruded aluminum I-beam monorail
- Fairly loud due to the spinning flywheel
- Ergonomic handle with 10-degree angle
- Flexfoot footboard system
- Padded-contoured seat
- Determined by intensity
- Damper Setting option
- Can be taken apart and stored
- Caster wheels
- Height: No limit (longer monorail optional)
- Weight: 500 pounds
- 5-years for the frame
- 2-years on the monitor and moving parts
Differences Between the Model D vs. Model E
|Concept2 Model D||Concept2 Model E|
|Price:||Around $945||Around $1,160
|Machine Weight:||57 pounds||65 pounds|
|Chain Housing:||Partially enclosed||Fully enclosed|
|Monitor Arm:||Flexible monitor arm; shorter than the Model E but the monitor height and viewing angle can be adjusted.||Fixed, extended monitor arm. The monitor viewing angle can be adjusted.|
|Machine Legs:||Front legs: Aluminum, Rear legs: Steel||Welded steel|
|Exterior Finish:||Powder coat (Matte finish - non glossy)||Double powder coat plus clear top coat (looks glossy)|
|Detailed Review:||Concept2 Model D Review||Concept2 Model E Review|
There are a fair amount of differences between the Model D and Model E and I will briefly go over the differences below:
- The seat height on the Model E is the same height as a basic chair and rests 6.0” higher than the Model D seat.
- This is made for individuals with balance issues, elderly people, people in a wheelchair, or people on crutches.
- The machine weight difference between both models is only a few insignificant pounds.
- The chain and chain housing on the Model E are better and in the long run will mean less maintenance. A nice upgrade but pretty insignificant.
- The Model D and E now come standard with the PM5 Monitor. They also both come in ‘light grey’ or ‘black’ which were both not available in the past.
- The monitor arm on the Model E is longer and fixed. You can only adjust the viewing angle of the monitor. The Model D has a shorter arm but you can adjust the height and viewing angle of the monitor.
- The monitor will be easier to see on the Model E because it will be closer to the user, but cannot fold back for storage. The display is large enough to be clearly seen from users on both machines making the difference insignificant.
- I feel the ability to fold the monitor arm back for storage on the Model D is actually a benefit and makes it better. You can see what I mean in the video below.
- The finish on the Model E is better and provides additional durability to the machine. The Model D is still very durable and used in commercial gyms across the world.
- The legs on both machines do a great job of keeping the units stable while in use. The primary reason the legs on the Model E were redesigned was additional support was needed to support the user since they are seated much higher compared to the Model D.
Below is a great video breaking down the Concept2 Model D vs. Concept2 Model E rowers.
Recommendation: Concept2 Model D or E?
There are a fair amount of differences between the Concept2 Model D and Concept2 Model E but NONE of them change the functionality of the machines.
You will get the exact same workout on either rower.
The most significant differences are price, seat height, and monitor arm.
In my opinion, the Model D monitor arm is better because it can fold back for storage. You can see the difference at the end of the video below. The Model D price is lower which is better.
So really you just have to ask yourself if you need the seat height. If you need a taller seat then buy the Model E, if not buy the Model D.
This is why I most often recommend buying the Concept2 Model D.
Summary: Concept2 Model D vs. Concept2 Model E
I think it is safe to say that Concept2 is one of the most respected rowing companies in the world, if not the most respected. Their two finest rowing machines, the Model D and Model E, are two of the best in the world.
You really can’t go wrong with either one and there’s no clear cut “must have” between the two.
Regardless of which machine you end up choosing one thing is for sure, you are guaranteed to have one of the best rowers that will last a lifetime.
I hope you enjoyed my comparison of the Concept2 Model D vs. Concept2 Model E. If you have any questions just drop them in the comment section below!
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