The SportsArt E83 Elliptical Review – Best Buy Elliptical for Under $2999

The Treadmill Sensei has been neglecting his readers this month and I want to apologize. We’re just about done with the Ichi-Ban Best Buy Awards and that has been taking up most of our time around here. I’ve had this SportsArt E83 elliptical review started for over a month now, but this is my first chance to sit down and get it finished. Over the last few years SportsArt has become one of the most consistant companies in the industry in terms of quality and customer service.

SportsArt shines when it comes to mid and higher end ellipticals and treadmills, and that quality is particularly obvious in their E83 Elliptical this year. The E83 wins hands-down for best buy elliptical in the $2500-$3000 range and may even be the best buy elliptical under $4000.

Be warned if you do order a SportsArt E83 Elliptical because this thing is solid and well-built…in other words, it is a heavy beast. Weighing in at just under 300 pounds, the E83 is one of the most sturdy ellipticals around, and definitely the most rock-solid available for the home market. And you can feel what that weight does when you get on the machine. Even a heavier or more hardcore user will be surprised at the lack of side-to-side motion in the E83. The weight and stability comes from the back and is even felt in the thicker, heavier-duty upright supports on the E83. Those uprights and the console center support combine to give users a steady base to put their weight on — a very different experience from most rear drive ellipticals where the upright supports are thin and more than a little wobbly.

Putting together the SportsArt E83 is a bit of a task but is still doable without too much cursing even for those of average mechanical abilities. I’d say look at it taking an hour to an hour and a half. If you have problems putting together Ikea furniture then you might want to either get help or get some valium before you start. We worked with a preassembled unit but did a quick disassembly to see just how tough it would be. My recommendation is to make sure to have someone help at least when you’re working on the uprights. One of the main selling points of most SportsArt Ellipticals is their adjustable stride lengths. SportsArt has addressed the problem of users of various heights in a fantastic fashion, and the E83 has a manually adjustable stride feature.

I’m going to say something here that may go a bit against the grain. In my experience, I actually prefer the manual adjustment on the E83 over the electronic adjustments on the higher end SportsArt ellipticals. The comput controlled adjustments work great on those units but the manual adjustment on the SportsArt E83 is a lot less complex in design and will last just about forever with proper maintenance. The manual adjustable stride on the E83 elliptical ranges from 18 inches to 25.5 inches – we’ve seen it listed as 26 inches, but a lot of times manufacturers will round up on their measurements. Either way, it has a fantastically long and smooth stride range and will suit users of any size from 5′ to 6’6″ or more. This is great for the tall husband-short wife syndrome we get lots of emails about.

The welded steel frame, ball bearing joints instead of cheaper bushings, 8 programs (including the spectacular “random” setting which literally gives you a thousand different workouts), near-silent workouts, great 5-year parts warranty and an incredibly comfortable, natural feeling elliptical motion all add up to a high-quality elliptical that is truly the Lexus or Mercedes of the fitness industry.

The SportsArt E83 Elliptical shines in a price range filled with quite a bit of quality. Solidly built, expertly designed and reasonably priced, the SportsArt E83 is a nearly perfect elliptical that will outlast just about any other machine on the market today. The SportsArt E83 is in my top 5 absolute favorite ellipticals of all time and for that the Treadmill Sensei gives it 4.5 out of 5 Golden Buddahs.

Easily one of the best ellipticals at any price, the SportsArt E83 scores with 4.5 gold buddahs.

SportsArt E83 Elliptical Specifications
Stride: 18″-25.5″ manually adjustable
Flywheel: approximately 22lbs
Display: Dot Matrix LED
Readouts: Workout Level, Calories, Time, Stride Length, Distance, Cal/Hr, Strides/Min, Total Strides, Heart Rate, Heart Rate Target
Programs: 10
Resistance: 14 Levels
Heart Rate Monitor: Yes
Heart Rate Control: Yes
Max User Weight: 400lbs
Unit Weight: 282lbs
Grade: Residential
Price: Under $3000