Matrix A50 Ascent TrainerMatrix A50 Ascent Trainer

Web Price: $3,499 | Sale Price: $3,199

One of four brand new elliptical machines introduced in 2016 from the company known for high-end equipment. Natural motion, adjustable stride and power incline make this one a winner.

Overall Rating From Elliptical Review Guru: 5.0 / 5.0

350 lbs
Stride Length:
74.8″ L x 29.5″ W x 65″ H

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Overview: The Matrix A50 Ascent Trainer is designed to take indoor training to new heights. The most advanced machine in the lineup, it offers a combination of ergonomic design, hi-tech features, and impressive warranty.

Let’s look at some of the highlights of this elliptical…

Advanced Technology

The combination of Suspension Elliptical Technology and PerfectStride Technology ensures an exceptionally fluid, natural motion without friction, noise, surges, or dead spots. The Exact Force Induction Brake system ensures the transition between resistance levels is faster, smoother, and more precise.

Interactive Features

The Passport Player allows you to connect your elliptical machine and TV and watch HD footage of your favorite destinations while the machine adjusts the speed and incline automatically to match the surface of the terrain. If you opt for an advanced console with Virtual Active feature, you can watch the same footage right on the touchscreen display itself.

Workout Tracking

The ViaFit feature makes fitness tracking easier than ever before. The machine logs all your workouts automatically and shares the data with the third party fitness apps that you already use. You can access the data any time you want and also share it with your friends on social media.

Multiple Console Choices

The Matrix A50 offers you three choices in terms of consoles – XR Simple, XER Intuitive, and XIR Ultimate. The common features in these consoles include Passport, ViaFit, Sprint 8, and built-in workout programs. The XER and XIR have additional features like touchscreen display, USB port, Bluetooth connectivity, smartphone compatibility, and speakers.

Other Features

The A50 also comes with dual purpose handlebars, cushioned foot pedals, handgrip sensors, wireless heart rate receiver, accessory tray, and water bottle holder.

Matrix A50 Ascent Trainer Test Drive

The first thing you notice about the A50 is the build. The machine weighs well over 300 lbs and has a rock solid feel to it. It feels very stable and does not sway or rock back and forth during workouts like some machines do.

Being a suspension elliptical, the A50 does not have a wheel track. So, there is virtually no noise or friction. The PerfectStride technology eliminates dead spots and surges, which are common in other elliptical machines. It results in a smoother, more fluid motion, which allows you to increase your workout efficiency and burn more calories.

The machine features the Exact Force Induction Brake system, which is much more advanced than the Eddy Current Brake system in the A30 model. There are 30 resistance levels, which again is a step-up from the A30, which only has 20 levels of resistance. The shift from one level to another is unbelievably smooth and silent.

The Sprint 8 program, in our opinion, is one of the key differentiating factors that makes the A50 stand out from the rest of the machines in its class. It helps you lose weight, build lean muscle mass, and boost your cardiovascular endurance in eight weeks. The best part is that each 20-minute workout only has four minutes of high intensity training. So, it is perfectly doable, even if you are a beginner.

Asa we mentioned, there are three consoles: the XR, XER, and XIR. The XR is perfect for the budget-conscious buyer, but we feel that it makes little sense to buy a commercial quality machine and not make full use of the features it has. The XER and XIR cost a bit more than the basic console, but they offer a barrage of features that are not available in their lower-priced counterpart. So, they are definitely worth paying more money for in our opinion.

The Passport Player comes preloaded with two destinations – Northern Rockies and American Northeast. You can also buy passport packs to watch HD footage of more destinations like Death Valley, British Columbia, and the French Riviera. If you opt for the basic console, you can watch the videos on your TV. Otherwise, you can watch the footage on the console screen itself.

The machine has grip sensors in the handle bars for heart rate tracking. It also has a built-in wireless heart rate receiver, but the chest strap is included only with the XER and XIR consoles. At this price point, there is simply no excuse for not including the strap with the basic package. It is our only complaint with the A50, which is otherwise a perfectly built elliptical trainer.

What’s the bottom line?

The Matrix A50 Ascent Trainer is definitely among the best of what Johnson Fitness has to offer. It rivals commercial machines with its rock solid build, advanced technology, ergonomic design, and generous warranty package.

The price tag might raise a few eyebrows, especially with the XER and XIR consoles, but the machine is definitely worth it and offers great value for your money. Also, it is exceptionally durable and is bound to last a lifetime if maintained well. So, all in all it is a great choice in the high-end category.

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