The Best Smith Machines for Home Gyms, Commercial Gyms, On Amazon, and More

A smith machine can open up a world of training possibilities. We pulled all the strings to find the best ones on the market.

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Smith machines are a familiar sight in gyms around the world, both in a commercial setting and in home gyms. And that’s for a good reason. This time tested piece of equipment can be used for a wide range of purposes, from designing entire body workouts, to acting as a spotter when you plan to lift alone. You can re-rack the bar at multiple points thanks to the hooks, which can be very useful for leg day or chest day, if you don’t have a partner to spot you.

There’s been a lot of innovation with regard smith machines, so we researched brands across the spectrum — both well known and not so well known – to find the best smith machines for a number of purposes. Sure, these machines aren’t cheap when compared to buying a couple of dumbbells and kettlebells. But if you’re trying to find an all-in-one package that can basically handle any workout you throw at it, smith machines offer more options and control than what free weights typically provide. 

Best Smith Machines

Best Smith Machine Overall

When you think of a Smith machine, likely the image in your head is of a rack-like contraption with a barbell that goes up and down, has various points to hook the bar on for self spotting and not much else. While you can still get those kinds of machines, many of the modern options like the Force USA G9 have some incredible features that make them an even better value for money.

Force USA G9 Trainer

The Force USA G9 is, in our opinion, the perfect smith machine for total body training. It operates as a power rack, functional trainer, cable machine, leg press and more. There is also storage for other equipment, and as a counterbalanced smith machine, you can be sure the weight you’re lifting is a true representation of your strength unlike certain other machines that do some of the work for you.

$500 Off
Force USA G9 All-In-One Trainer
Force USA G9 All-In-One Trainer
Force USA G9 All-In-One Trainer

This all-in-one gym by Force USA can get you the total body workout you need. Features numerous cable-loaded features and doubles as a power rack for barbell movements. Right now get $500 off the G9 during Force USA's Spring Sale

Who Should Buy the Force USA G9 Trainer

  • Trainees who want to be able to train a huge variety of exercises.
  • Consumers who have limited space in which to train and want to make the most of it.
  • Athletes looking for a robust piece of equipment that won’t break and has a fantastic warranty. 

Who Shouldn’t Buy the Force USA G9 Trainer

  • Buyers who want a basic smith machine with less functionality. 
  • Consumers with a strict budget who just need a self-spotting machine.
  • Lifters who need a smith machine with a very small footprint for tight spaces. 

With both incredible build quality and a massive array of attachments and functionalities, the G9 is a monster of a machine that we can confidently recommend to almost anyone.

Best Smith Machine for Smaller Spaces

As you look around at smith machines on the market, you’ll probably find out pretty early on that none of them are what we would call “compact”. However, there are some options that are better suited to smaller spaces, and the Force USA G3 is our favorite smith machine when space is limited. 

Force USA G3 Trainer

Packing almost as much functionality as the larger G9, the G3 is still an amazingly versatile piece of kit that allows you to train legs, arms, core and more. When you run out of exercises, give us a call. What’s great about the G3 is that it’s designed to take up a smaller footprint and is a decent amount cheaper too. Force USA’s impressive warranty still applies though, so you can rest assured the quality hasn’t been compromised on this smaller package. 

$400 Off
Force USA G3 All-In-One Trainer
Force USA G3 All-In-One Trainer
Force USA G3 All-In-One Trainer

With 20 attachments included, this all-in-one trainer also features a complete storage system for your barbells, weight plates, and cables. It can be further optimized by adding a leg press and lat-pulldown seat. It's the most complete option, making it perfect for bodybuilders. Save $400 on the G3 during their Spring Sale now. 

Who Should Buy the Force USA G3 Trainer

  • Customers who have limited space in which to train and want to make the most of it.
  • Athletes looking for a piece of equipment with lots of options for expansion additions.
  • Buyers who want a machine with a great warranty and an incredibly solid build. 

Who Shouldn’t Buy the Force USA G3 Trainer

  • Consumers who prefer to spend a little more and get a top of the range model.
  • Lifters for whom space isn’t an issue and can consider larger models with more attachments. 
  • Trainees who prefer to stick with a more basic squat rack or pressing machine. 

Slightly smaller than some of the other options on this list, the G3 nonetheless packs an incredible punch for its size. If you’re operating with limited space, look no further than this machine. 

Best Commercial Smith Machine

Classically designed, anyone who has worked out at a large gym has seen something akin to the Commercial Smith Machine. Battle tested, these machines have been used and abused by gym-goers for years. They may accumulate some superficial damage, but you’re going to be hard pushed to find a more reliable machine.

Body-Solid SCB1000 Pro

Designed with reliability and simplicity in mind, the club-quality bearings in this machine should make it ideal for handling a large volume of usage and still maintain a smooth feel. Able to handle up to 1000lbs of weight, it’s perfect for any level of lifter, and with a 6lb counterbalance, even beginners won’t have any issues getting started with it. 

Body-Solid SCB1000 Pro
Body-Solid SCB1000 Pro
Body-Solid SCB1000 Pro

For athletes and home gym warriors who need a reliable commercial smith machine, the Body-Solid SCB1000 Pro is a warhorse that is easy to use and requires very little maintenance.

Who Should Buy the Body-Solid SCB1000 Pro

  • Buyers looking for a very durable and easy to maintain machine capable of loading up to 1000lbs.
  • Lifters who want an easy to use piece of equipment that won’t give out even with high volume training. 
  • Gymgoers looking for a smith machine with plenty of weight plate storage.

Who Shouldn’t Buy the Body-Solid SCB1000 Pro

  • Athletes looking for a machine with more cables and add-on options. 
  • Customers on a tighter budget who need more function for this price point. 
  • Those looking for a smith machine that doesn’t have a slight pitch to the bar path. 

Simple and reliable, this smith machine is a great option for athletes who are going to put in a lot of time under the bar and need a reliable machine to hold up under daily wear and tear. 

Best Smith Machine with a Power Rack

Luckily for consumers, it’s pretty common nowadays to be able to purchase equipment that combines many, many functionalities into one neat package. We spotted a lot of options that combine a the functions of a power rack and smith machine, but Force USA’s G9 stood out from the rest. 

Force USA G9 Trainer

The G9 has a commercial grade adjustable power rack, an innovative smith machine, and much more. If you’re looking to get one piece of equipment that allows you to train bodybuilding, powerlifting, CrossFit and more, then we can’t recommend this piece of equipment highly enough. 

$500 Off
Force USA G9 All-In-One Trainer
Force USA G9 All-In-One Trainer
Force USA G9 All-In-One Trainer

This all-in-one gym by Force USA can get you the total body workout you need. Features numerous cable-loaded features and doubles as a power rack for barbell movements. Right now get $500 off the G9 during Force USA's Spring Sale

Who Should Buy the Force USA G9 Trainer

  • Athletes who want the benefits of both a smith machine and a power rack all in one.
  • Lifters who like a large variety of movements in their training programs.
  • Customers who want a machine with a great warranty. 

Who Shouldn’t Buy the Force USA G9 Trainer

  • Consumers with a tighter budget. You’re paying for a lot of function here, but the price tag is an investment.
  • Lifters looking for a machine that has a small footprint and takes up less floor space. 
  • Trainees who want a simpler machine for cable and accessory work. 

Unparalleled in its versatility, the G9 lets you train your main lifts, accessory movements and more all in one well designed package. 

Best Smith Machine on Amazon

Shopping for big piece of gym equipment online can be overwhelming at the best of times, and we have to admit that the enormous selection of smith machines on Amazon is shocking. We did the research though, and if you’re looking to purchase a smith machine from Amazon, the Commercial Home Gym is a solid bet. 

Commercial Home Gym

Sturdy, multi-functional, and pretty darn good looking, the Commercial Home Gym combines a smith machine, power rack, chin up bar, crossover cable system, and more all into one package. It does require assembly, but there is an option to pay extra for in home installation to save you even more time. Able to handle loads up to 990lbs, you can rest assured you won’t run out of training options.

Commercial Home Gym
Commercial Home Gym
Commercial Home Gym

Packing an incredible selection of exercises and function into one solid piece of equipment, this commercial home gym smith machine is an investment that enables users to train the full body all at one station. 

Who Should Buy the Commercial Home Gym

  • Lifters who want a pulley machine and would like to combine it with other functions for maximum efficiency.
  • Consumers who want a machine with different color options and customizations. 
  • Anyone looking for a durable option that can handle over 900lbs of weight. 
  • Shoppers worried about shipping snafus, as most people are comfortable with Amazon’s shipping and tracking service. 

Who Shouldn’t Buy the Commercial Home Gym

  • Athletes with a tighter budget.
  • Home gym owners looking to avoid setting up a piece of equipment. 
  • Those who prefer a machine with a longer warranty. 

All the best gym machines combined and all the perks of using Amazon’s shipping network, the Commercial Home Gym is a solid option for anyone looking to workout at home without ever getting bored.

Best Smith Machine Power Rack

We’ll admit that most of the picks on this list are more like smith machines that come loaded with additional functionality. But for those looking for a piece of equipment that functions more like a power rack, with smith machine benefits built in, we think the Marcy Pro Smith Machine fits the bill quite nicely. 

Marcy Pro Smith Machine

The Marcy Pro Smith Machine has a larger footprint than many of the other machines on this list, but if the bulk of your work will be with a rack, it could be a worthy investment. The smith machine still works really well for accessory training and you also have cables as the icing on top of the cake. Finally, we think that many consumers will appreciate the price, which makes it one of the best value options on this list.

Marcy Pro Smith Machine
Marcy Pro Smith Machine
Marcy Pro Smith Machine

Power racks are great, but with the Marcy Pro you get a true power rack plus a smith machine, which opens up a whole world of exercises to help users advance every aspect of their strength training.

Who Should Buy the Marcy Pro Smith Machine

  • Buyers with a tighter budget, the Marcy Pro Smith Machine clocks in at a very reasonable price point. 
  • Trainees who want a versatile, multifunctional machine that truly feels like a power rack. 
  • Lifters who have a good amount of training space to work with. 

Who Shouldn’t Buy the Marcy Pro Smith Machine

  • Customers who are shy on space, this piece of equipment is about 7 feet deep and 6 feet wide. 
  • Athletes who prefer a machine with a robust warranty.
  • Gymgoers who want a machine with more accessory options. 

The Marcy Pro is a great option for those who want more out of their power rack. Packing the extra functionality of the smith machine and cables, you should be able to easily increase the size of your exercise toolbox with this machine. 

What to Consider Before Buying a Smith Machine

A smith machine isn’t a casual purchase. They’re large, heavy, and require assembly. These are some of the things we think you should ponder before you splash the cash.

Your Budget

Smith machines will typically set you back a minimum of $1000, but you can very easily end up spending five times that amount. For most people, this is going to be one of the deciding factors in which option they pick, because it is such a large chunk of change. For that kind of money you could get a barbell, plates and maybe even more. So make sure you know what you’re buying and that you’re committed to the purchase. 

Versatility

Some smith machines are pretty basic and offer simply the bar, track, and rack, while others come with all kinds of bells and whistles attached. Several on this list have pulleys, attachments for dip bars and more.

Available Training Space

One of the main downsides to a smith machine is the size and weight. You need a decently sized area to house one, and though there are larger and smaller options available, there is a point where it’s just not feasible. Measure out your available area and see which machines can work and which can’t. Be sure to factor in the bar width and some additional breathing room so you don’t feel hindered while getting your pump on. 

Durability

With such a large upfront investment, you’re going to want to make sure the smith machine you buy is durable. All of the models on this list are fabricated using steel, so unless you start searching elsewhere for something extra cheap, you can rest assured that the picks on this list will have great longevity. We always recommend checking to see if other customers have noted any common problems also. 

Ease of Assembly

For some people, buying anything that requires assembly is part of the fun. For others, it is one of the most exquisite forms of torture. Be aware that all of these machines need some form of assembling, but some are more involved than others. The simpler the machine, the less you’re going to have to wrap your head around. 

Warranties

With an expensive piece of equipment, it’s always nice to have a warranty as a safeguard in case it does break early on. As with all products, warranties are available in varying lengths and coverages. Find one that you are comfortable with and get to training.

Design

None of these machines will have you gazing for hours at their unfathomable beauty. Several, however, have put some thought into innovations that add extra functionality, save you space, or generally make using them a bit easier. Where possible, look for a machine that has done one or more of these things rather than just sticking to the bare minimum.

Final Word

We know that there is a group of people out there who say you should never ever use smith machines, and that they need to be consigned to the scrap heap post haste. However, in our eyes, the smith machine is simply another helpful tool in your program design toolbox. They can be very valuable when programmed for the right reasons and shouldn’t be overlooked — the same way we would never overlook foam rolling or cardio training simply because someone on the internet said so. Do a bit of research, find out how a smith machine (or any other piece of equipment for that matter!) could be useful for you, and then purchase accordingly. 

FAQs

What are smith machines useful for?

Smith machines are very versatile training tools, allowing for a wide range of movements to be performed while also bringing several other benefits. The bar is easily racked using the built in hooks which can allow for self spotting. The bar path is stabilized which can enable greater targeting of specific muscle groups, and they are usually less intimidating for beginners.

Why get a smith machine instead of a rack?

You can have both if you purchase the right product, but ultimately it depends on your training preferences and goals. Ultimately, the smith machine may be a little more helpful if you mostly train on your own and want to lift heavy, thanks to the option of racking more easily without dropping anything.

I’ve heard smith machines can be dangerous, is this the case?

Any machine where you’re moving heavy weight can be dangerous, but smith machines can alleviate some of the worries as you can rack weight even at the bottom of a lift. If you plan on lifting heavy or going for a 1 rep max, we highly recommend having a spotter at the ready, as opposed to relying on your wit and a machine in a tight situation.