A Smith machine is a good addition to a home gym that can help you get into weightlifting and build more muscle and strength so you can get the physique you want. But how much do they actually cost and what kind of features can you expect for your money? Let’s find out.
Smith machines can cost anywhere from $650 to $7000+ with the average being around $2371. The price depends on the quality, other functionality, warranty and brand. For a home gym, a machine that combines a Smith machine with a functional trainer and/or barbell rack is money and space efficient.
Let’s dive into the details of price and features below.
Smith machine prices
Below you can see a list of Smith machines that are suitable for a home gym and their prices.
|Brand||Model||Type||Smith Bar Weight limit||Price|
|Hammer Strength||HSSMV||Large Smith||660||4000|
|BodyCraft||Jones Light||Large Smith||1000||3200|
|BodyCraft||Jones Club||Large Smith||1000||3700|
|Titan Fitness||Smith||Large Smith||600||1500|
|Fitness First||Smith||Large Smith||?||3000|
The average price of a Smith machine for a home gym is $2371. Prices range from about $650 to over $7000. There is a lot of variability in quality and functionality between Smith machines which is reflected in the prices. Some Smith machines are just a bar on rails while others combine that bar with many other exercise options like a barbell rack and functional trainer.
Types of Smith machine
There are a few distinct types of Smith machine. While they are all smith machines, they offer different features and characteristics. There are three main types of Smith machine but even those are just rough categories with a lot of variability even within the categories.
The compact Smith machines are rare but there are a few available. These are basically a floor frame to stabilize everything and then two guide rods stick up from the frame. So there is no bracing of the guide rails and pillars on top. This means it does take up some floor space but looks relatively small.
These are relatively simple machines: The bar moves straight up and down and the load limit is relatively low compared to other machines. They don’t cost too much but if you want any other type of gym equipment besides your Smith machine in your home gym, check out the combination type bellow which is more space and money efficient.
Large + Dedicated
While the compact smith machines are usually dedicated smith machines, they are not the sturdy machine you might know from a big commercial gym. This is that machine.
They feature a solid frame, higher load limits and sometimes a slightly more complicated mechanism. Some of the higher end Smith machines have a feature where the whole assembly can move horizontally, making lifting this Smith bar a much more natural movement.
Other of these machines have the guide rods at an angle to attempt to make the movement pattern a bit more natural. The movement pattern is one of the weaknesses of the Smith machine so anything that can make it more natural is a good thing.
While the compact Smith machine might be attractive for a home gym because of price and size, the combination version might be a better choice especially if you don’t have the equipment it’s combined with yet.
Often these combination machines are a Smith machine but combined with a functional trainer and/or a barbell rack. If you’re building a home gym from scratch and you want a smith machine but also a barbell rack and a cable trainer, one of these machines can be a very good option. While these combinations can be a bit pricey, you get a lot of exercise options in one machine. Buying all of these pieces of equipment separately would cost more money in most cases and take up a lot more space.
In a home gym, you’re usually working out alone or maybe with a buddy. So you’ll probably only need one machine at one time. So combining all these functions in one machine is a good way to save space and money.
What can you expect for your money?
What kind of smith machine can you expect for a certain amount of money? Let’s find out. The price ranges don’t necessarily line up with the different types listed above.
$600 to $1000
About $600 is the least amount of money you can expect to pay for a Smith machine. You’ll get a pretty simple setup, the compact category named above can be found here. The compact machine in this price range are solid and if you only want a smith machine, it’s a good affordable option. Be aware that the load limit of the compact Smith machines isn’t the highest although the Body-Solid still has a 400 lbs. load limit. The load limit isn’t too high because the guide rods and pillars are not braced at the top. The mechanism itself is good.
However, for a few hundred dollars more, you can also get the cheaper combination machines. You’ll be able to get a machine that combines a functional trainer (cables), Smith machine and barbell rack. This is a combination that’s very hard to beat, especially for the price. However, you will get a budget version of all those things. The load limit of the Smith bar on these machines is only 300 lbs. which isn’t too high and the functional trainers are plate loaded. So while you get a large amount of exercise options, they aren’t suitable for very heavy weightlifting. On the other hand, 300 lbs. of resistance is enough for most people.
$1000 to $2500
In this price range you can find the higher quality compact machines and a higher quality combination machine. The good compact Smith machines cost around $1500 while the good combination machines are around $2500.
These are machines that are built better than the bottom range. This results in higher load limits, smoother action and better designs.
However, the combination machines in this price range will still have a plate loaded functional trainer which is not the most user friendly. Plate loading a functional trainer is a bit of a pain although it does work. And since you need a weight plate set to load the Smith bar anyways, you can use the same plates for the cable exercises. The fact that these machines lack weight stacks for the cable exercises means they’re a lot cheaper but keep in mind you’ll still have to buy weight plates so your saving might not be as big as you think.
$2500 to $4000
The type of sturdy Smith machine you might know from the large commercial gyms is in this price range. They do one thing but they do it very well. The frames are very sturdy the build quality is exceptional. That means they have very high load limits of up to 1000 lbs. and great warranty conditions.
If you’ve got the space, money and want a really good dedicated Smith machine, shopping in this price range will give you the best results.
There are a few machines that cost over $4000. Most people don’t need to spend this much money for a home gym unless you’re looking for something very specific.
Here you’ll find machines that are high quality functional trainers first and the Smith functionality is an add on and not the other way around. If you want both a good functional trainer and Smith machine, this is the way to go. There is a lot to be said for having this combination and if you get a good functional trainer and Smith machine in one, you basically have a complete home gym in one buy. And for this amount of money you can expect something very good.
If Smith functionality is more important, look at the BodyCraft Jones Platinum and BodyCraft XFT. Those are exceptional Smith machines with a very good functional trainer in one. If you really want to buy a complete, all-in-one home gym solution, take a look at the Inspire Fitness FT2.
Favorite home gym tools
Many people often forget a few important pieces of their home gym that isn’t directly gym equipment. Here are my favorite home gym tools.
- Interval timer: To time your intervals and all types of other workouts, the GymNext Flex is easily the best and easiest to use.
- Mirrors: Fab & Glass (Amazon link) makes the best large mirror sheets so you can see your exercise form.
- Flooring: American Floor Mats gym flooring (Amazon) or equipment mats make your gym quieter, easier to clean and keeps your floor and equipment safe.
- Fan: The Rowenta VU5670 (Amazon) is a great way to stay cool while working out.