Hydrow vs Concept2 Review
Table of Contents
Hydrow was launched in 2017 by former USA national rowing team coach Bruce Smith. Its signature rowing machine and monthly membership showcased in this Hydrow vs Concept2 review deliver a smooth, engaging ride led by elite trainers.
Immersive and challenging, this brand takes what can be a monotonous workout and transforms it into one you’ll look forward to daily.
Men’s Health called the RowErg the best overall rowing machine in a lineup of 19 other rowers. The signature rower comes from a line of durable and efficient machines from Concept2, a brand founded in 1976 by Olympic athletes Dick and Pete Dreissigacker.
Used by Olympic-level athletes, the company delivers premium performance for an affordable price.
It’s not a secret—rowing is one of the best workouts on the planet. Why? Because it activates 86% of your body’s muscles, is kind to your joints, and is a form of heart-pumping cardio.
In this Hydrow vs Concept2 review, expect a little friendly competition between these two brands. I’ll compare each rower’s features, durability, value, feedback, and more, all so you can decide which one is right for you.
What To Consider
Hydrow offers just one rower but you’ll also find a selection of accessories and gear in its inventory to see you through strength, yoga, and Pilates workouts.
Concept2 offers a range of workout equipment including skiing machines, stationary bikes, performance monitors, clothing, and more.
Hydrow targets those who want immersive at-home workouts. Its machine revolves around a built-in HD touchscreen and monthly class membership.
Concept2 targets serious athletes as well as those looking for simple workouts. Though you will get games and daily guided audio workouts with the RowErg, overall, it’s a straightforward, fuss-free machine.
Hydrow offers a monthly all-access membership for $38/month with over 3,000 live and on-demand classes for rowing, pilates, yoga, and strength. It also carries a range of accessories like mats and weights.
Concept2 does not offer classes but does have a limited inventory of accessories like seat pads and device holders.
Ease of Installation
Hydrow is very easy to assemble and offers an in-home assembly service for an additional fee. It may be harder to store because the machine doesn’t fold.
Concept2 is also easy to assemble. Plus, the machine breaks down into two pieces for storage. Unlike Hydrow, the brand does not offer an in-home installation service.
The Hydrow Rower comes with a 12-month warranty for its screen and parts, while its frame has a 5-year warranty.
Concept2 offers a 2-year warranty for parts and a 5-year warranty for the frame of its RowErg.
Hydrow is designed for home use only. You can find Concept2 in hotels and gyms, but you can also order one online. Both are available through their websites as well as partner retailers around the world.
Hydrow Rower vs Concept2 RowErg Review:
It’s time to get into the fun part of this Hydrow vs Concept2 review. I’ll put both brands’ signature rowing machines head-to-head. Let’s get into it.
If you’re familiar with the Peloton, the Hydrow Rower takes a similar concept and applies it to a high-quality, durable rowing machine. Equipped with a 22” HD touchscreen, add on a class membership to access 3,000+ live and on-demand classes.
Pumping out an immersive sound experience from its speakers, the machine itself is ultra-quiet and uses a 10-roller system for a smooth ride.
Using electromagnetic resistance controlled through its computer, it’s Bluetooth compatible and can be synced with fitness apps for easy accountability.
Once assembled, your Rower will measure 86″ L x 25″ W x 47″ H, and if you need to store it, the machine can be flipped upright.
If you’re interested in buying the Hydrow today, you can save $229 in shipping and 1:1 training costs when you activate your membership for $38/month.
Available for purchase through 4-interest-free payments with affirm, you can buy it outright for $2,495.
- 22” HD Touchscreen
- Optional membership
- Free 1:1 personal coaching session
- Free standard delivery
- One-year home-use warranty (plus 5-year warranty for frame)
- Affirm payment plan available
In its design, the Concept2 RowErg isn’t much different from the Hydrow. Smooth, quiet, and sleek, it’s chosen by professionals and is known for its sturdy steel and aluminum construction.
This machine comes equipped with a PMD Performance Monitor that tracks your stats. Plus, it’s compatible with Bluetooth so you can access games or choose to pop your tablet into the holder if you ever feel like following your own workout.
The RowErg is available in standard or tall versions, meaning that you won’t have to compromise if you’re tall. Using a flywheel and damper for easy adjustments, this machine delivers reliable resistance via airflow.
Done your workout? Separate your RowErg into two pieces and store them easily. This rower is available for $900-$1,050.
- Two different height options
- Built-in games
- Bluetooth compatible
- Syncs with various apps
- Reliable stat tracking
- USB compatible
- Device holder
- 2-year limited warranty (plus 5-year warranty for frame)
Both made to last and perform, the Concept2 RowErg offers an edge for athletes and professionals with its incredibly durable frame and smooth ride.
The Hydrow Rower delivers on smoothness as well, though instead of air resists, it uses electromagnetic for a water-like feel.
The largest difference between these two is Hydrow’s inclusion of its built-in HD touchscreen, which thus raises its price. Both quality pieces of equipment, if you love the idea of classes, journeys, and an immersive experience, Hydrow may be the better fit.
If you’re looking for something practical and performance-driven, then Concept2 is a simple, reliable machine.
Hydrow vs Concept2: Workouts
Sometimes, we all need an extra push when it comes to working out, and modern fitness equipment brands get that.
Adding live workouts, podcast classes, and games to their machines, users may be more likely to exercise knowing there’s something to look forward to other than sweat and pain.
Since you’ve come to know the machines featured in this Hydrow vs Concept2 review, this part will be all about the workouts each of them comes with. For Hydrow, that means the live and on-demanded classes that are part of its (optional) class pass.
For $38/month, you’ll get free range of its library with over 3,000 workouts led by engaging coaches and athletes who know their way around the lake.
Along with rowing classes, Hydrow also offers stretching, yoga, pilates, and strength training within its live and on-demand inventory.
Rather not follow along? Choose a journey. These are unguided rows that will lead you through beautiful waterways around the world.
- Access to 3,000+ classes
- On-demand & live classes
- Taught by top-notch athletes
- Offers classes outside of rowing
- Journeys available
By now you know that the Concept2 RowErg doesn’t have a 22” HD screen like Hydrow does, but it doesn’t fall short of entertainment options. Each day, the brand will send you three workouts you can choose from to help you stay motivated.
If none of them fit your fancy, you can also explore additional workouts within the short, medium, and long workout types. Prefer something audible? Join trainer Cady Hart-Peterson who will guide you through fun, engaging, and challenging workouts.
Available in podcast form, all you need to do is download them via iTunes, Apple Podcasts, or Google Play, pop in your headphones, and get going.
Want to learn how to row properly? Try any of the games programmed into your monitor. These include the Fish Game for intensity, the Dart Game for consistency, Target Training for tempo, and Biathlon which dishes out penalties if you miss your target.
- Access to games, daily workouts, and podcast classes
- Games are fun and challenging
- Free access
Screen or no screen? That is the question. With either machine, you’ll get fun, entertaining workouts, but it’s clear that one is a little more modern than the other.
Hydrow vs Concept2: Durability
Unless you know you’re getting a cheap piece of equipment, you’re probably buying yours to last you a few years.
There’s no sense in investing in something that’s only going to break, so what it’s made from matters. This part of my Hydrow vs Concept2 review will look into the durability of each machine.
The Hydrow Rower meets commercial-grade standards for quality. It’s made from an aluminum steel frame with an anthracite polymer body, along with rubberized feet so your floor stays protected. Weighing 145 lbs, the machine can hold up to 375 lbs, and customers say this machine is very well-built.
Users love the smooth resistance and quality features like a 22” HD touchscreen and ergonomically designed low-streets handle. Using a nylon belt to drive resistance instead of a chain, it’s incredibly quiet and smooth.
The Concept2 RowErg uses a nickel-plated steel chain to drive resistance, along with a monitor that’s partially powered by your workout. Cool. Tested to hold up to 500 lbs, it has aluminum front legs, steel back legs, and an ergonomic seat and handles for a comfortable stroke.
Customers say they feel safe on the RowErg and like their weight is held sturdily. Overall, the Concept2 can hold more weight than the Hydrow, so it’s not a surprise that customers report feeling more secure on the machine.
Since an HD touchscreen is going to be a little less durable than a simple monitor, Concept2 may be the more durable pick.
Hydrow vs Concept2: Price & Value
The price of a product can either make or break a product. If it has everything you’re looking for and fits your budget, buying it is a no-brainer.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned in this Hydrow vs Concept2 review, it’s that the competing rowing machines are priced very differently.
The Hydrow Rower clocks in at $2,495 while the Concept2 RowErg will set you back just $900 plus shipping. With Hydrow, delivery is free, but both brands offer 1-2 & 5-year warranties with a 30-day risk-free trial. In the realm of everything outside of the machines themselves, these brands are well-matched.
The machines themselves are what makes them different, but more so, their screens. With Hydrow, you’ll pay about $1,500 more for the LED screen, and you’ll need to pay an extra $38/month to access classes.
Now, this price still beats an all-access class pass at most gyms, but if you’re an independent rower, then a fancy screen and live sessions may not be exciting to you.
Where Hydrow’s classes show value though, is in their variety. You can choose strength, pilates, and more, and follow along from your rower’s screen.
With Concept2, there’s no reason you can’t watch follow along to classes through another platform, and actually, you can sign up for Hydrow’s even without the machine. Your Concept2 comes with a Device Holder so you can watch classes.
The main difference in price here is a screen, and in terms of value, that’s up to you to decide if it’s worth the extra dough.
Hydrow vs Concept2: What Do Customers Think?
If there’s one thing you should always do before buying something, it’s read the reviews. Hopping around from website to website to get an accurate image of the brand can be time-consuming, so a lot of people don’t.
That’s why this Hydrow vs Concept2 review exists, and in this section, you’ll find a summary of feedback available across the web in one convenient place. I’ll include both ratings and common points of feedback, starting with Hydrow first.
- Hydrow: 4.7/5 stars from 9,002 reviews
- BestBuy: 4.8/5 stars from 464 reviews
- Amazon: 4.6/5 stars from 66 reviews
- Start Rowing: 4.8/5 stars
One of the most common pieces of feedback about Hydrow is its engaging team of athletes that lead you through classes. Here’s what else buyers had to say about the brand:
- Classes are fun and challenging
- Rowing machine is solid and well constructed
- Rower is very quiet
- Customer service is helpful and quick to respond
Customers seem to love the machine, but say that it’s best for those who want live classes. The Concept2 is built similarly, so if you don’t want the whole “big-screen” experience, you may find that a lower costing rower will do the trick.
Next, I’ll take you through a few ratings for Concept2, then dive into common feedback.
- Argos: 5/5 stars from 192 votes
- Amazon: 4.9/5 stars from 8,933 reviews
- Rogue Fitness: 5/5 stars from 1,353 reviews
- VeryWellFit: 4.6/5 stars
Overall, customers are highly impressed with the RowErg. They say it’s an incredibly well-built machine and the above ratings are a great indication of that. Check out some other common points of feedback below:
- Machine is smooth and quiet
- Has a high-quality, “last-forever” kind of durability
- Efficient, friendly customer service
The main gripe with this machine is that the screen is a little ancient-looking. It’s outdated, and hard to compare to the Hydrow considering its screen is 22” and offers full-blown, life-like color. The Hydrow was designed to be this way and because of that, it comes with a higher price tag.
If you’re not concerned with physically watching your instructors, then the Concept2 RowErg is built for strength. I’d say it ranked higher among customers in terms of durability.
Hydrow vs Concept2: Promotions & Discounts
No Hydrow vs Concept2 review would be complete if I didn’t mention deals, right? In this section, you’ll find everything you need to know in the realm of discounts.
I scoured the websites for both brands to uncover every last one of them because…why pay full price for anything if you don’t have to? I’ll start with Hydrow first, and you’ll find a point list below of everything it has to offer.
- Save up to $150 when you buy any package
- Refer a Friend: Give $250, get $250
- Free standard delivery ($150 savings)
- Free 1:1 Personal Training ($79 savings)
So here’s the thing about Concept2: It’s already such an affordable, quality piece of equipment, that the brand doesn’t offer deals like free shipping. Perks are great, yes, but they matter a little more with products that cost a little more.
In this comparison, Hydrow takes the cake when it comes to deals, but it’s important to realize that Concept2 still comes in way lower on price in general. Once you calculate shipping, it’s possible that it still may be less expensive.
Hydrow vs Concept2: Shipping & Returns
When starting a new fitness program, you need your machine to arrive at a reasonable time. Who wants to wait two months? This part of my Hydrow vs Concept2 review will give you the lowdown on shipping so you know what to expect after you hit ‘purchase.’
After that, I’ll check out the returns policy and warranty details just in case you ever have to use them. Let’s start with Hydrow first.
- Free standard delivery
- You can expect to receive your machine to arrive in 2-3 weeks
- Ships to the continental US and the UK
- Hawaii, Puerto Rico, Alaska, and Canada orders are available through partner retailers
- In-stock items ship right away
- Customers say machines arrive on time
Your Hydrow rower will come with both a 12-month and 5-year warranty. If you export the machine to any country outside of the one you purchased it from, the warranty will be voided.
Your 12-month warranty covers defects in the screen and labor, but the frame comes with protection against defects in materials for 5 years.
If this is your first-ever purchase from Hydrow and you bought it directly from the company’s website, then your machine is backed by a 30-day risk-free trial. Go ahead and try out the machine in your home for the duration, and if it’s not up to your standards, return it for a full refund.
Hydrow will send someone to pick it up along with a prepaid shipping return label for you to send back accessories. Concept2 offers a 30-day return policy as well, but it requires you to pay all return shipping fees.
The policy only applies to US and Canadian customers. Here are the brand’s shipping must-knows:
- Continental US shipping costs $55-$105
- Ships to the US and Canada only
- Available through partner retailers around the world
- Order processing takes 2-3 business days
- Delivery time estimates available at checkout
- Customers say machines arrive quickly
Your entire Concept 2 RowErg is backed by a 2-year limited warranty for everything other than the frame. Repairing or replacing your machine should it fail due to defects in material or workmanship for parts, if your frame has any defects, you’re covered for the first 5 years.
Concept2 slightly pulls ahead of Hydrow in terms of warranty length, while Hydrow does one up from its competitor with its offer of free returns.
In regards to shipping, well, Hydrow’s free standard delivery is certainly a perk, but for either brand, customers say they arrive promptly.
Who Will You Shop With?
Since we’ve reached the end of the Hydrow vs Concept2 review, you’ve come to know the major differences between these two brands.
Hydrow is called “the Peloton of rowing” for good reason, and if you’re looking for live classes and fun, engaging workouts, it may be of more interest to you.
Concept2 delivers fun in the form of workouts too though, only through a slightly less impressive screen. In the end, its lack of an LED screen means it costs $1,500 less than its competitor, so it’s the ideal pick for those who want a performance rower for a low cost.
Both of the brands have been said to deliver high-quality rowing machines, with customers reporting sturdy frames, quiet resistance, and a smooth ride.
Regardless of the one that feels right to you, you’re getting the benefits of a heart-pounding full-body workout that rowing is so loved for.
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