Currently available for £2499.00 from Sweatband.com
NordicTrack Commercial 2950 Folding Treadmill Review
NordicTrack is the premium brand of the world’s largest home fitness equipment manufacturer and over the past few years, has been successfully working hard to establish itself in the premium category. This latest incarnation of their Commercial 2950 model is an attempt at taking their top of the range model in this class and improving it. So, we were very keen to find out what it’s like. Here’s what we found.
The first thing that’s worth pointing out is that the product name is likely to cause a bit of confusion for two reasons: Firstly, it shares the model number two older versions of the C2950 without differentiating in the name. The second slightly confusing thing is the word “Commercial” in the product’s name. This machine is squarely aimed at the domestic market and not intended for gyms at all but it does have a very high spec and is not unlike a commercial machine, hence the name. With that cleared up, onto what we found…..
Naming confusion aside, the first step is the assembly. This is a big and heavy machine (over 140kg) so assembly is definitely a two person job. The instruction manual is clear with written explanations of each step in addition to the excellent diagrams. All in all, for those comfortable with putting together flat-packed furniture, this machine won’t present a problem to assemble, but you’ll definitely need two people.
Once assembled, it’s clear that, as the name would suggest, this is a serious running machine. The element that’s most striking when looking at this machine is the console – there’s a giant 22″ screen covering the main area of the console! This is also very much a full sized treadmill with not much more than the fact it folds, separating it from a full commercial model. That’s not something we often see from a domestic treadmill but it looks great and definitely inspires confidence in this machine.
Clearly, the console is one of the major stand-out features of the 2950, but the first thing we wanted to establish is what it’s like as a running machine and whether the changes made to this version improve upon the previous ones. After all, the fanciest of electronics driving a mechanically poor treadmill does not, on the whole, a good running experience make.
As with the previous version the deck on the C2950 is seriously spacious. At 55cm (22″) wide, it’s the pretty much the widest deck we’ve seen on a home treadmill and easily matches many commerical models. The deck length is over 1.5m (60″) making it long enough for even the tallest of runners to sprint at top speed without worrying about reaching the back of the deck. Another encouraging sign that this too is a very high spec machine that’s been built to last. The front and rear rollers used here are larger than that to be found on most ordinary treadmill. With a 2.5″ diameter there is increased contact surface area with the running belt which means the belt doesn’t need to be extra tight to avoid slippage. Just as importantly, the large diameter of the roller means that the motor can run at lower RPM for any given speed as compared with machines that have smaller rollers. This, fact plus, we’re told thanks to the upgraded bearings, this treadmill is significantly quieter to run, generates less heat and reduces the stress on internal components to help significantly improve lifespan as well as making it quieter and smoother in operation.
We can confirm that running on the 2950 is most definitely a premium running experience. The deck feels responsive yet forgiving and we really like the adjustable cushioning: NordicTrack recognise that different people have different weights, fitness levels and varying needs for the level of cushioning that would be best suited for them from a treadmill deck and have incorporated a means of adjusting the stiffness of the cushioning by turning a handle on the side of the running deck. There is a very clear and noticeable difference between the two ends of the settings so this is definitely not just a gimmick and it allows one to fine tune this machine to their own personal requirements. That’s not common on treadmils and is sure to appeal to anyone that will be sharing use of this machine with other regular users in the household. Changing the settings is very quick and easy so won’t be a pain to change even if you have to do it daily.
As you’d expect on a machine positioned at this price point, the motor makes light work of driving the running the belt all the way to a top speed of 22kph (over 13.5 mph!) which is enough even for high-end runners. While the powered incline provides a true, pretty monstrous 15% incline level at its maximum – jogging at a high incline burns a lot of calories in comparison to running on a flat surface making this machine ideal for burnin calories at a high rate. The surprise came from the fact that there’s also a decline feature – only a slight one at 3%, but it does definitely give one the sensation of running downhill.
So, this latest incarnation of the C2950 definitely ticks all the boxes in respect of providing a great platform as a running machine and now onto the most visually striking element of this machine: The console! Over the past year, we’ve seen an increasing number of machines incorporating TFT touchscreens into their consoles. All of them that we’ve had a play with previously are basically an Android tablet that have a couple of apps used to control the treadmill and then provide the standard apps that you’d get on a tablet such as YouTube, a web browser or social media apps. On the surface, the approach adopted by others incorporating a tablet seems like a good one, but the execution is almost always badly flawed as you end up with the worst of all worlds: no comprehensive interface that is actually polished and good at being a treadmill console and a low performance tablet to run other apps. After all, many treadmills do have a tablet holder and if someone really wants to watch a NetFlix film whilst using their treadmill, wouldn’t it be easier and far more secure to use an existing tablet than putting in all your credentials into an inbuilt tablet on a treadmill (which may or may not have correct and latest security patches installed / updated!)? The approach that NordicTrack have taken is completely different and a commendable one: Whilst the underlying technology behind the console of the 2950 is likely to be based on an Android tablet to achieve cost benefits, it is a proper embedded system: It focuses on one thing and it does it incredibly well: being a console for the treadmill! A couple of elements missing from this most recent version that were incorporated previously are the HDMI out port that allowed you to connect the treadmill to a larger screeen. We can understand why this feature has been dropped as with a 22″ screen mere feet away from your face it’s not likely that this was widely used and in truth really isn’t necessary. The other feature to be dropped is the triple fan set up that’s been swtiched to the standard NordicTrack dual fan set up. Again we can see why. While the idea of a triple fan sounds great in marketing speak, the end result is the same as a dual fan system that uses larger individual fans. This means that opting for a dual system reduces waste and still delivers the same result so switching makes perfect sense.
It’s clear that NordicTrack have made a huge investment in the software behind this console, which takes their existing iFit technology to the next level. To get started, the machine needs to be connected to a WiFi network. It should be noted that whilst the 2950 does function and still provide far more than most treadmills out of the box, to get the most out it, we’d recommend signing up for an iFit account as a 1-year Family membership of iFit Coach is included with this machine. One of the major surprises of the 2950 is that the traditional preset programmes have been totally scrapped and replaced with video workouts! These video workouts transform the the ‘chore’ of working through a preset programme as part of one’s training to something that’s genuinely fun and motivating!
NordicTrack are setting the pace in treadmill technology with the C2950 – the giant touchscreen display is responsive, packed full of motivating features and is actually pretty intuitive to use. With the video workouts, a whole new dimension has been introduced and this builds on top of all the great features of iFit. With its clean interface, unparalleled levels of interactivity, personalisation and feedback, NordicTrack have achieved something that eludes most treadmill manufacturers: adding enough value to the console to provide genuine motivation! Is it perfect without any glitches? Well no, but we think most people can live with the odd glitch (for example, the very occasional software updates don’t take place overnight and can keep you waiting just when you want to use the machine) in return for the stunning experience!
The warranty on the machine is NordicTrack’s standard lifetime frame, 10 years motor and 2 years for all other parts and labour – remember to register the machine to get the 2nd year!
We love the 2950! With this machine, NordicTrack have delivered something very special: It’s a better, more engaging and more motivating experience than the machines you’d find in gyms – this isn’t something that happens often on a home treadmill! We think that this particular version of the 2950 is a subtle, but noticeable improvement on the previous model which gets it a big thumbs up from us.
The NordicTrack C2950 ticks all the boxes for exactly what a premium treadmill should be. A combination of superior specifications, innovation, ability to motivate and attention to detail ensure that this machine adapts to the needs of different potential users with differing goals. Whether you're training for a marathon, wishing to shed a few pounds, or trying to get in shape and improve your mobility, the C2950 will deliver a safe workout and very enjoyable one at that. This one of the most engaging treadmills we've tested and we have no hesitation in recommending it. And, at the current deal price we've found it's one of the best value for money models you can buy right now.
NordicTrack Commercial 2950 Specifications
- 4.25 HP DurX™ Commercial Pro motor
- 0-22kph (0-13.7mph) speed range with OneTouch™ controls
- -3% to +15% power-adjustable decline/incline with OneTouch™ controls
- 55cm (21.6”) x 152cm (59.8”) running surface
- Non-stretch, 2-ply tread belt
- 2.5” (6.35cm) precision machined and balanced non-flex rollers
- RunnersFlex™ cushioning technology
- 22” full-colour touchscreen display
- Feedback: Several display modes available (the display mode that you select will determine which workout information is shown). The screen can show: incline level, vertical gain, vertical loss, elapsed time, calories burned, calories per hour, distance, speed, a track representing 400m (1/4 mile), pace, heart rate
- 44 programmes (manual, 40 pre-set programmes, map workout, draw your own map workout, time/distance workout (requires iFit account)) + HD video workouts
- Interactivity: iFit® Coach Enabled (1-year Family membership included)
- Heart Rate Measurement via Dual-EKG pulse grips + Bluetooth® Smart wireless receiver (chest strap included)
- SpaceSaver® folding design with EasyLift™ Assist
- Conveniences: Dual AutoBreeze™ workout fan, accessory tray, transportation wheels
- Audio: Compatible music port for iPod®/mp3, dual 3-inch speakers
- Dimensions in Use (L x W x H): 199cm (78.3”) x 100cm (39.4”) x 170cm (66.9”)
- Folded Dimensions (L x W x H): 93cm (36.6″) x 100cm (39.4″) x 190cm (74.8″)
- Max. user weight: 135kg (297.6lbs)
- Product weight: 143kg (315.3lbs)
- Power supply: mains
- Warranty: Lifetime frame and motor, 5 years parts and electronics, 2 years labour (if registered within 28 days of purchase)
NordicTrack Commercial 2950 Treadmill - Console / Display Unit
Currently available for £2499.00 from Sweatband.com
Also see our Treadmill Comparison Table
Whilst every effort is made to give you accurate information we cannot guarantee the technical specification. Models change on a regular basis and may differ slightly from the above review. We recommend you contact the retailer if you have a question regarding technical data. Please read our Legal Disclaimer