Titan T1-X Home Gym Review

Titan T1-X Home Gym Review by Murray Hughes

Home gyms come in many sizes and there are hundreds, maybe thousands on the market. But in all my years of using and reviewing home gyms and home gym equipment, I have never seen or used a gym that impressed me as much as the Titan T1-X.

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Home Gym Bodybuilding exclusive: I have arranged with Titan for my readers to get a discount on any TITAN home gym: Mention the discount coupon code “HGB”  and you get 5% off any TITAN home gym.

TITAN website  www.titan-gyms.com

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"Titan T1-X home gyms are intelligently engineered, commercial-grade quality machines, destined to become the bench-mark for excellence in home gym equipment."

I want one of these home gyms!

The home gym equipment included in this package is 2nd-to-none and their remarkable user friendliness make them the only hardcore home gyms I know that successfully cross the barrier between serious-lifting and family training.

This most impressive characteristic is due to it's unique multi-functional design, 'Assisted Exercise Technology' and counter balance system not seen in any other gym in it's class - usually found only in modern commercial-gyms (read the review to learn more).

I want to avoid hyping the Titan T1-X home gyms too much or this review will not be impartial. And, as you will see once you read the 'Cons' section, this gym doesn't quite achieve perfection and has a couple of minor issues.

We've got a lot more to discuss so let's get started...

Standard Equipment

Frame: Baked-on, electrostatic powder coating, chip and scratch resistant, heavy-commercial strength, hand-welded, 11 gauge carbon-steel frame with lifetime warranty (note: smaller the gauge, thicker the steel - 12 gauge is standard in this class).

The weight plate posts are machine-milled from stainless steel pillars, contrast this with the softer chrome plated posts found on most other home gyms which use olympic sized plates (big hole). The softer chromed posts become very banged-up over time, leading to difficulty in adding and removing plates fromthe machine. Not an issue with milled stainless steel.

The frame arrives about 30% assembled and is easily completed (this was a design consideration). Moreover, complete instruction is available on TITAN website  www.titan-gyms.com

Cables: Nylon coated, 2000lb tested, high-tensile Air Craft cables (standard for home gym equipment in this class).

Pulleys and bearings: Heavy duty nylon pulleys with sealed 'maintenance-free', dust-proof industrial grade bearings. All other bearing housings are the same (smith guide rod rollers, bench guide rod rollers). 

Bench: Laminated wood-backed adjustable bench, padded with high density foam on a heavy-duty 1-1/2" steel frame along all four edges (many home gyms have a single support running up back of bench, which eventually leads to wobbling and thread shear). 

Seat and backrest are adjustable (including height adjustable). Cleverly, the bench has been designed to be adjustable to the extent that the user faces theopposite direction when doing leg-press, achieved by lowering backrest to flat position and raising seat to a perpendicular position to act as backrest.

The decline position is achieved by lying backwards on the bench when it is inclined, you are stabilized by padded leg-lock.

The bench also has a unique slide feature, allowing it to be easily moved forward or backward along steel guide rails and hardened bearings rollers, permitting optimal body positioning as per your body dimensions. Aligning a free standing bench perfectly can sometimes involve getting off and back on the bench several times, but the slide system is always exactly centered and can be moved in or out with out getting off the bench (walk it with your feet while sitting).

Some bench exercises, like flat and incline press, put your lower back into a dangerous hyper-extended position because there is nowhere to put your feet (they should be elevated to reduce forward hip rotation). The Titan T1-X has actually taken this into account bymaking the leg-lock pads angle adjustable and adding foot rests on the sides, now you can elevate your legs without compromising stability. A small detail but very good (the absence of this feature has long been a silent gripe of mine because I've had lower back injuries from training). 

Smith machine: Mario, the US national dealer informed me that the smith machine is not a smith but instead a 'Smith Hybrid' using 'Smith Hybrid Technology'. 

True, it is unlike other smiths I have used. The genius of this system is the load direction can be reversed. Standard smith machines are just a bar attached to guide rods and the load is always down. The Titan T1-X home gyms use pulleys to create counter-balance and if desired, reverse the load direction from down to up. This feature alone is worth atleast a dozen additional exercises that I can think of without being creative. 

The counter-balance system also allows for very light loads, as little as 1lb, making this home gym equipment suitable for everyone, including woman and young adults. 

For convenience and familiarity purposes, I will refer to the smith hybrid as a smith machine for the rest of this review.

The smith machine uses 1.2 inch steel guide rods (largest and strongest of all home gyms currently available), and the rod brackets glide on hardened bearings rollers with sealed ballbearing housings. The only home gym equipment using this technology. 

Usually, smith machine rod brackets are prone to becoming loose or sticky over time (depends whether bearing or bush system), leading to a shudder effect or increased load on the concentric (up) phase. Titan T1-X's hard wearing, maintenance free components have a very long use-life and should not experience these problems. 

One of my favorite features of the Titan T1-X smith machine are the shoulder pads. Whereas other smith machines only have a bar, the Titan T1-X home gyms have squat pads like those seen on commercial-gym squat machines. You place one pad on each shoulder with your head in between. But unlike most commercial-gym squat machines, there are 3 different width settings for the pads. 

Another unique feature of the Titan T1-X are the 'push/pull exercise handles'. Instead of a barbell, standard on most smith machines, there is one of these 'push/pull' handles per side of the machine. The benefit is, where the depth of the eccentric (down) phase is usually limited by the bar touching the back of your neck in shoulder press or chest in bench press, the push/pull handles allow you to descend beyond this point to achieve full lengthening of the target muscles. 

You can also center yourself when shrugging, as you would when doing dumbbell shrugs with an arm either side of your body

Titan T1-X Home Gym Review continued:

"Quick Change" locking system: A patent pending system for safe and easy transition and resting between exercises. 

Power racks: 2 power racks for work with free weight barbells. No area of this home gym equipment has been left under-utilized. Power racks are for shoulder press, military press (shoulders), dead lift (back of thigh, butt, and lower back), squat (legs, butt), upright row (shoulders), lunge (legs), flat, incline and decline bench press (chest) and so on. 

Gun racks: There are huge height adjustable gun racks that can be mounted on the front or rear power racks, much larger than other home gyms seen in this class. Gun racks are used for heavy barbell lifting or as a safe guard against getting 'stuck' at the bottom of an exercise. They also make the starting position for exercises like upright row and standing military press easier to achieve. 

Leg press: Again the innovation of Titan T1-X home gyms impress, this time with their clever leg press engineering. As a rule, leg press is usually an optional extra on home gym equipment. It requires added expense and a lot more room because it is nearly always an independent system that sometimes even requires its own weight stack.

Titan T1-X has solved this problem by eliminating the levers usually needed for leg press and incorporating the slide feature of the bench. Your feet remain stationary as you push against Diamond-steel foot plates ('Diamond' describes the high-grip surface pattern), and the bench slides in and out.

The footplates can be changed between high and low positions. High position will hit more the hamstrings and glutes (back of thigh and butt) while the lower position will place more load on quadriceps (front of thigh). Lower position is also safer if pregnant or lower back problems.

Vertical leg press: As testimony to the remarkable versatility of the Titan T1-X home gyms, they also come standard with a vertical leg press. Separately, these usually retail for about $400 on the lower end. In a vertical leg press you are lying on your back and pressing straight up; they are an excellent power exercise and a good alternative to squats. An additional set of footplates are included for this feature. 

High cable for lat pulldown (back), triceps pushdowns (back of arm). 

Low cable: The single low cable can be used for many exercises, for example, upright row, cable curls (front of arm), one arm concentration curls (front of arm) and triceps kickbacks (back of arm).

Low row station: There are footplates on the rear side of the gym especially for low row using the low cable. Rowing (on a gym) is essential for building thickness in your back, particularly in rhomboids, middle fibers of trapezius (central region of upper back) and rear deltoids (shoulders).

Pull-up handles for close and wide grips pull-ups (also known as chin-ups). Instead of a straight bar, which adducts the wrists and overloads the radiocarpal joints, the handles have 2 branches, ergonomically positioned to evenly spread the load. Small touches like these may go unnoticed by a novice but to the experience trainer, they are very welcomed. 

If you prefer chins with a straight bar, there is a bracket for placing an Olympic bar (bar with large bore stabilizers on each end - hence Olympic plates have large holes). But thebar is not included and needs to be purchased separately. Something low priced from a local retailer would be sufficient. 

The pull up handles can also be used for hanging leg raises (lower abdominals and hip flexors)

Assisted pull-up station: Most people can't do pull-ups, or only a few of them at best, which is unfortunate because they are the number exercise for building width across your back; essential if you want to be "V" shaped. Amazingly, the Titan T1-X home gyms come standard with an assisted pull-up station. You kneel on a special padded platform which is counter balanced to push up, effectively reducing how much weight you lift. Assisted pull-ups are a commerial-gym exercise not seen on other home gym equipment in this class.

Assisted dip station for shoulders, triceps (back of arms) chest and some outer back. 

Dips are in the top 3 mass building exercises for chest after barbell bench and dumbbell bench. Leaning forward hits chest and shoulders and an upright position places more load on the triceps. 

Unfortunately many people can't do dips because you need atleast enough strength to support your body weight. Even when you can, it is difficult to squeeze out 3 sets because your body is the minimum load. But using the same counter-balance system mentioned earlier to reverse the load, and specially adapted handles, you can do a dipping motion while your body remains stationary. On the Titan T1-X, anyone can do dips.

Standard Accessories – all standard accessories which are included in TITAN T1-X are listed on main website  www.titan-gyms.com

 in MENU -> ACCESSORIES

Optional Equipment – there is a possibility to buy additional options, which extend the variety of exercises. All extra options for TITAN T1-X are listed on main website  www.titan-gyms.com

 in MENU -> EXERCISES

Size

Minimal gym room size for TITAN T1-X – without extra option O (universal bench)

L x W x H: 169,3 x 118,1 x 88,6 in / 430 x 300 x 225 cm

Minimal gym room size for TITAN T1-X – with extra option O included (universal bench)

L x W x H: 196,9 x 118,1 x 88,6 in / 500 x 300 x 225 cm

Weight (not including barbell or weight plates) 
1.375lbs / 624 kg

Load Capacities 
Smith machine -  700lbs / 318 kg
Power rack and gun racks – 800lbs / 362 kg

Warranty

Lifetime on the frame - sign of a confident manufacturer, all the top producers offer the same. 
2 years on pulleys and rollers.
1 year on upholstery and cables.

Pros

Where do I start? The Titan T1-X home gyms are the best home gym equipment we have ever reviewed, by a very wide margin. I'll give it to you in point form to keep it short:

  • The manufacturers say there are 300 exercises total on this gym but I think I could get more. The number 1 problem with even the best home gym equipment is boredom resulting from limited exercise potential. The Titan T1-Xs are the most exercise packed home gyms I've ever seen. 
  • Superior construction, better than usual materials (ie. 11 gauge steel, Diamond-steel footplates, solid stainless steel weight posts etc.)
  • Smith Hybrid Technology with counter balance system to reverse load direction on smith.
  • Smith machine and counter balance system can work independently and therefore more than user is possible.
  • Leg press is standard and has 2 different foot positions.
  • Vertical leg press is standard. I've never seen a home gym wih this feature, a big bonus if you want to build powerful legs 
  • Assisted Exercise Technology - assisted dips, assisted pull-ups. These kinds of exercises are usually strictly the domain of commercial-gyms and really open these great exercises to anyone who wants to do them (not just the strong).
  • Variable positions on ergonomic pull-up bars.
  • Plenty of cable handles.
  • Width adjustable squat shoulder pads.
  • Push/pull handles instead of a bar so you can go dumbbell deep on your exercises.
  • Unique sliding bench for easy positioning. 
  • Detailed and wide instruction available on main website www.titan-gyms.com
  • Comes 30% assembled and designed to be easily put together (I often get questions asking how to assemble a gym or where to get a manual).
  • Many options - options on other gyms I've reviewed are usually a leg press (standard on this gym) or hanging leg raise or hip ab/adduction arm and you can only have one or the other. The options on the Titan T1-X home gyms are unique and mostly multi-functional and you can get all of them if you desire. Specifically I liked the following: 
  • Opt. JA – the lever arms where you can perform over 20 exercises.
  • Opt. RM – rowing exercises – the one and only multi-functional machine TITAN T1-X which includes this type of rowing exercises.
  • Opt. DR – check this extra option on our website, this feature is incredible!

Cons

Yes, it wasn't perfect. There a couple of things I didn't like:

  • Nothing for soleus. Soleus makes up the volume in the lower portion of your calf. But no other home gyms have a soleus exercise either.
  • No standing calf raise block. With any exercise you need to go through full motion to get full growth. The web site shows the user standing on a 20lb plate but it is not high enough for full range. A short length of 4"x4" timber with a couple of feet on it would do the trick for $10 or less. 
  • The squat demonstration on their website uses the same weight plate under the heel, but as a sports therapist and gym instructor I can't condone that. A short length of 2"x1" timber with feet would be better.

Overall

Anyone who has the room and the budget for something in this class should buy the Titan T1-X, absolutely no doubt about it. They are the best.

It is by far superior in design, innovation and versatility than any other home gyms I have ever reviewed.

Sellers

If you are interested in purchasing TITAN machines, please contact the official distributor for the US and CANADA market.

TITAN EQUIPMENT LLC

Rockefeller Group Business Centers
48 Wall Street 11th Floor
New York, NY 10005
USA

Mario Szultka – Sales Manager
Phone: +1 888 368 5550
10:00 – 21:00 EST / 14:00 – 01:00 UTC
Email: support@titan-gyms.com

Home Gym Bodybuilding exclusive: I have arranged with Titan for my readers to get a discount on any TITAN home gym: Mention the discount coupon code “HGB”  and you get 5% off any TITAN home gym.

TITAN website  www.titan-gyms.com

Webmaster's Note: Titan gyms may cost more than the typical home gym, but I have spent at least $7-8K on my home gym just by buying, reselling and changing out different gym machines over the years when I could have just purchased a Titan in the beginning.

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