Schwinn 411 Elliptical Review- Is it Worthy?

The Schwinn 411 is a mid-range elliptical trainer for indoor residential use. Built by the iconic Schwinn, it is one of the best elliptical machines in that price bracket.

For most people, the name Schwinn is synonymous with bicycles. Indeed, Schwinn has been a premier manufacturer of bicycles of all kinds, and even today the name still commands respect. 

The Schwinn brand has since been acquired by Nautilus after a series of buy-offs since 2011. However, you will be glad to know that the quality of their products is the same, if not better.

Schwinn 411 Compact Elliptical Machine

The Schwinn 411 is a recent model, introduced at the end of 2018 and became their most affordable model. In doing this, it beat their previous 430 and 470 models which are in higher price categories. It has become very popular due to its budget price and high quality.

Schwinn 411 Elliptical Machine Review

The Schwinn 411 appears to belong to a higher class than the others in its category. It is better made, has more features, and is generally more competitive.

Here is a breakdown of its technical information.

Schwinn 411 Compact Elliptical Machine

1 used from $459.08
Free shipping
Last update was in: July 12, 2020 8:49 am

Schwinn 411 General Information and Technical Specifications

  • Total weight – 120lbs (54kg)
  • Assembled size – 54”L by 24”W
  • Maximum weight capacity – 300 lbs (136kg)
  • Stride length – 18”
  • Levels of resistance – 16
  • Pre-programmed workouts – 13
  • Comes with an inertia-enhanced flywheel, weight unspecified.
  • Foldable – No
  • Transport wheels – Available.
  • Console – 5.5in, unlit
  • Bluetooth – Available.
Schwinn 411 Features and Design
General Features

The Schwinn 411 combines functionality with convenience. It does not compromise on quality, but it lacks some high-end features to keep the price down. Overall, it is a great mix of economy and class.

Schwinn 411 Compact Elliptical Machine

General Features
  • 18” stride length is just long enough to be comfortable with most people while remaining compact.
  • Frame made of high-strength steel tubing. It gives it durability and strength while remaining light enough for portability.
  • 10-year manufacturer’s warranty on the frame, 2 years on parts and electronics and 1 year on labor.
  • The whole machine is painted with powder paint for rust, dust and liquid resistance. The color scheme is black for the body and red for the cranks, which gives it a sophisticated look.
  • The machine features a front-drive design, with the flywheel mounted just in front of the pedals which gives it more stability. It also serves to make it more compact as opposed to other designs.
  • Stable design – Other than the big weight centered towards the front, this machine also has adjustable mounts so that the machine can be used on any floor type. 
  • Super smooth running – The heavy inertia-enhanced flywheel coupled with stability bars joining the pedals and flywheel serve to make your workout more smooth.
  • The Schwinn 411 elliptical is not foldable, but it has transport wheels mounted on the front which can be used to move it from one place to the other.
  • This machine is a cross-drive, which means that there are movable arms that you can use to work out your upper body as well as the lower. This is because the flywheel also provides the necessary resistance to the cross arms should you need to use them.
  • Assembly of this machine is easy and can be done by one person in about 1-2 hours. However, it is recommended that two people do and they can probably do it much faster.
Flywheel and Resistance

The Schwinn 411 features a large, heavy inertia-enhanced flywheel for a smooth feel. The heavier a flywheel is, the better because it serves to dampen jerky motions. Schwinn doesn’t specify the weight of the flywheel on this one, but it is quite heavy.

Schwinn 411 Compact Elliptical Machine

 

It features a magnetic resistance system that uses electromagnets placed near the flywheel. By adjusting the strength of magnetic interaction between them, the resistance strength can be varied. This system is preferred because it does not involve actual contact between the two surfaces and is thus silent, effective, and causes less wear.

There are 16 levels of resistance available, starting from easy to hard. Adjustments can be made easily by the use of push buttons on the console.

Pedals and Drive System

Due to its front-drive configuration, the Schwinn 411 features a simple and effective belt drive system. This allows it to have almost 100% power transfer without slipping. It is also silent as opposed to chain drives.

Another advantage of the belt drive is that it requires no lubrication. This makes maintenance of the machine much easier. It also allows for reverse drive, so that you can target different muscle groups by changing the direction of your pedalling.

The pedals on this elliptical are oversized, being made of solid ABS steel for durability (ABS steel is the same standard used in ships). The large size accommodates different foot sizes and also provides safety and stability. The pedals are covered by rubber inserts which improve grip and helps cushion the feet.

Schwinn 411 Compact Elliptical Machine

The pedal bars move over a  set of rails with rollers and sealed ball-bearings. This is essential to the elliptical path created and overall stride length. These are also the most sensitive parts of the machine and require regular maintenance. The good thing is that Schwinn uses industrial grade material for durability.

The rails and pedals allow a stride length of 18”, which is within the optimum. The best machines have a stride length of 18” – 22”. Also, the pedals have a step-up height of 9” above the floor and a maximum height of 18”. In general, people of up to 6’2” should be comfortable using it.

Console

The Schwinn 411 has a 5.5” console which is unfortunately not backlit. This means that you need to use it in an environment with good lighting. On it, you can track your exercise metrics such as time, mileage, speed, calories burned, heart rate and RPM. It uses both metric and imperial units which can be interchanged at will.

There are also 13 workout programs available on this machine. These can be categorized into 1 Manual program and 12 Interval programs of which 1 is for heart rate control.

The manual program allows you to exercise freely changing the controls as you go. The heart rate control program is designed to help keep your heart rate at one value, of which the default is 135bpm. The rest of the programs are preset and are designed to help you achieve different fitness goals, such as fat loss.

The console is also telemetric and can connect with a wireless chest strap for pulse monitoring. However, the chest strap is not included and you will have to buy one separately.

A tablet holder is available so that you can keep yourself entertained as you work out. Alternatively, you can connect to the RunSocial app which is a mixed reality app through which you can experience running through 19 scenic locations all over the world, through 27 different routes. You can do this alone or with friends and family.

The LCD display screen shows the following parameters:

  • Pulse Monitors

    There are EKG pulse monitors integrated into the rubber grips of the fixed handles. These offer pulse monitoring with a decent level of accuracy, and you can check out your readings on a dedicated section on the console.

Schwinn 411 Elliptical Pros
Pros

Like every other machine, the Schwinn 411 is not perfect. It has its strong and weak points. The good thing is that the strong points far outweigh the weak ones.

Pros

  • Sturdy and solid build.
  • 16 level magnetic resistance with easy adjustment.
  • Compact design.
  • 18” stride length is perfect for everyone but the tallest users.
  • Bluetooth and telemetric capabilities to connect wireless phones or tablets and wearable sensors, respectively.
  • Oversized pedals with rubber inserts for extra stability and grip.
  • Moving arms allow you to work out your upper body at the same time.
  • Compatible with RunSocial and other fitness apps.
  • Tablet and bottle holders included for convenience.
Schwinn 411 Elliptical Cons
Cons
  • The console is not backlit. It would be difficult to use it in poor lighting.
  • The tablet holder is directly in front of the console display so that a tablet would block you from seeing the console display while in use.
  • You will have to purchase a separate chest strap as it does not come included with the machine.
  • Not ideal for very tall people (taller than 6’2”) as the stride length would feel constrained.

Schwinn 411 Compact Elliptical Machine

1 used from $459.08
Free shipping
Last update was in: July 12, 2020 8:49 am

Verdict

The Schwinn 411 elliptical is a clear winner in the below $500 category. It is made of solid construction and will perform flawlessly for many years will minimal maintenance. 

The best thing about it is that it bears some features which are only usually found in higher priced models. These include magnetic resistance, telemetry, Bluetooth, long stride length, among others. Essentially, this elliptical is punching above its weight and getting away with it.

The customer reviews available for the Schwinn 411 are mostly positive, and there are many happy owners for the time it has been around. Most of the issues raised concern noises after a few days of use, but Schwinn’s technical team has since been able to confirm that these result from improper assembly and are easily fixed.

With that, the Schwinn is easily the best elliptical machine for under $500.