Best Dumbbell Sets 2017 [Reviews and Comparison]
These days we all live such busy lives, that it can be difficult to head down to the gym every day for your workout needs.
A lot of us decide to have home gyms instead, because that way there is no need to venture out, and no need to pay those expensive gym memberships!
For that reason, I decided to get au fait with dumbbell sets! Perfect for working out, ideal for muscle definition, and easy to store away, there is no need to head out when you have a high quality dumbbell set in your midst.
There is of course a huge variety on the market however, so how do you know which are good and which are, well, not so good?
I’ve done the hard work for you, and reviewed five of the best on the market.
Mr. Mass Rating
PowerBlock Elite Dumbbells
2.5lb to 90lb
BowFlex SelectTech Set 552
5lb to 52.5lb
Yes4All Adjustable Dumbbells
Unipack Adjustable Dumbbells Cast Iron
105 Lbs total
J/Fit Dumbbell Set With Durable Rack
Dumbbell Set Reviews
1. PowerBlock Elite Dumbbells
This particular product is certainly ideal for anyone who is serious about improving muscle tone and lifting weights on a regular basis
Each side has a maximum weight of 90lb, and it goes up in increments, from 2.5lb in each hand, upwards, depending on how much weight you want to lift.
You can purchase additions to the set once you have it in situ, and these expansion kits mean you can move on from your weight lifting habit and continue to build and define muscle how you see fit.
This is a plate adjustable dumbbell set, and the plates are all steel, which is painted black for super durability and long-lasting life, with a steel handle on each side.
The bands on each plate makes selecting the right weight easy, so no need to waste time during your workout, and the pins also make selection easier too.
The overall adjustability is super-easy to use, which is what I really liked about this product – workouts don’t need to be made harder!
- Long increments, from 2.5lb to 90lb, to give you total control over your workout
- Colored bands on each plate so you can select your weight with ease
- Totally adjustable to your needs
- Padded wrist supports for comfort
- Durable and long-lasting
- This isn’t the cheapest dumbbell set out there, but it is one of the best, so you need to weigh up quality versus price
2. BowFlex SelectTech Set 552
This is a much more budget-worthy option than our previous choice, but it is still high quality all the same.
This is another plate adjustable dumbbell set, and it is much smaller and more compact, so it can be stored away with ease.
The set comprises of a free standing unit and two dumbbells, which have adjustable dials on each side, so you can select the weight you want without wasting further time.
The handles are made of durable steel for comfort, and are ergonomically designed to minimize the risk of injury, and for your comfort too.
This is a more traditional style of dumbbell, with the added dial technology thrown in for good measure, which is a good twist on the old pattern.
Each side has 5lb to 52.5lb increments, giving you a good, solid workout.
- More traditional appearance, which most will find easy to use
- Dials on the side of each dumbbell, to help you select your weight with ease
- Good price for a high quality product
- Small and easy to pack away, compact for use and storage
- Ergonomically designed for comfort
- Whilst the dial is an innovative way to pick the weight you want, some users have said that the dial has a tendency to stick sometimes, which is an annoyance
3. Yes4All Adjustable Dumbbells
Here we have another plate adjustable dumbbell set, and one which is definitely great for anyone who doesn’t want to spend a fortune on their workout gear.
The first impression I had of this set is that it is compact, easy to use, and very easy to pack away, which is always a bonus.
On top of this, the adjustability is very easy, and with a 105lb total, you can pick your own increment, to tailor-make your workout.
The handle is made of diamond knurled chrome, for comfort and durability once more, and the plates are cast iron, with a black finish, designed to prevent rust and any problems occurring over time.
This means your set is going to last you for a good period after your first purchase, and cost effectiveness is key these days..
- Very easy to pack away, compact and easy to use
- Plates are treated for anti-rust, and prevents damage and corrosion over time
- Small increments, so you can tailor-make your workout
- Good price, making this product available for those on a budget
- The handle is strong and durable, but doesn’t feel as comfortable to hold as some of the other products I’ve reviewed already
4. Unipack Adjustable Dumbbells Cast Iron
Another plate adjustable set to review, and another very high quality one.
Again, the perk with this set is that it is compact, and if you don’t have much space, like me, that is a great advantage to have.
Made of strong cast iron, the handles are made of iron and chrome, for serious strength, and e dumbbells don’t feel overly large or cumbersome in the hands.
You can adjust this set up to 52.5lb in each hand, so a total of 105lb, and the set comes with 8 x 5lb plates, 2 x 2.5lb plates, and 2 x 1.25 plates, so you can create the right harmony for you and your muscle needs.
I mentioned that the set is small, and it comes pre-assembled, so no need to mess around with assembly or any tools.
- Very small and compact, so you can easily store it away when not in use
- Doesn’t feel too large in your hand when working out
- Adjustable, with three different weight plates included in the set
- Very easy to set up, already assembled when you receive it
- The fact that the set doesn’t feel particularly large in your hand is a pro and a con, because for some users, this might have a ‘flimsy’ feel, compared to some other sets on offer
5. J/Fit Dumbbell Set With Durable Rack
Finally, we have a big named brand to talk about here
This is another surprisingly low priced product, and one which is more traditional in its appearance, e.g. it is a station adjustable dumbbell set, the type that you have probably already in gyms and Pilates studios.
There are four different weight choices, with four differently colored dumbbell sets to choose from. This makes it easy to identify which one you need quickly whilst you’re working out. The dumbbells are made of neoprene coating, which mean they don’t flake or scratch over time, and this also means they are non-slip whilst you’re using them.
The set includes a 18lb choice, 20lb, 24lb, and 32lb, with a pre-assembled stand.
- A more traditional dumbbell set, no adjustment needed, you simply grab the size of dumbbell that you want
- Double dipped neoprene for easy grip, no flaking, and no scratching
- Low cost
- Big named brand for confidence in your purchase
- Four different weight choices
- This set is not as adjustable as the other plate adjustable dumbbell sets I have reviewed already
What Are Plate Adjustable Dumbbells?
Adjustable dumbbells overall are much more preferable to standard ones, because it basically means that you can adjust your workout to suit your needs, rather than having to stick to one choice only.
Within that range however you have plate adjustable dumbbells, and you have station adjustable dumbbells. What is the difference?
Plate adjustable dumbbells are, as the name would suggest, a set of dumbbells which can be adjusted in terms of how much weight you want on each side, by adjusting the plates accordingly.
For instance, if you want 2.5lb on one side, and 2lb on the other, for whatever, you simply adjust the plates on each side however you like.
This can be done by either removing a plate, or by turning a dial, depending on the actual product and how it works.
Plate adjustable dumbbells do give you more control over your workout, because you get to really customise your choices, without having to stick to a pre-prescribed decision.
This type of dumbbell can be a bit more expensive than the next type I’m going to talk about but again, it depends on how serious you are about your fitness regime.
These types are also not difficult to use, because even the dial types are designed to be quick and simple to change between weights on the go, without interrupting your muscle building and defining efforts in the slightest.
What Are Station Adjustable Dumbbells?
On the other hand, we have station adjustable dumbbells, and these do unfortunately offer you a little less customisation over your workout needs.
These types of dumbbells don’t have the incremental choice that a set of plate adjustable dumbbells will have, and instead will be more like the traditional sets you’ve probably seen in fitness studios over the years.
I’m talking about a stand, with a set of dumbbells in various colors, and these will pertain to a specific weight.
Of course, this type of set is a little cheaper, and if you’re looking for a budget option then this would tick that box for you, and still give you a good workout at the same time.
I have to say however, either type of adjustable dumbbell is much easier to use and much better for your workout needs than a set that is non-adjustable.
We’re not all the same shape and size, and the ability to be able to customise your dumbbells to suit your needs is something you should be looking for when shopping around.
The large weights which are designed for overhead lifting are easily mimicked in a handheld form by the quality of today’s dumbbells on the market, and the ability to create your bespoke workout means that you can get gym standard results, in the comfort of your own home, garage, spare room, or garden, wherever you choose to workout!
By this point, my aim is that you have a clear ideal of what to look for when buying a set of dumbbells and you should also be very clear that I much prefer adjustable dumbbells over those which are not at all adjustable.
These might be a tad bit more expensive, but it’s worth the tiny extra cost overall, and does give you so much more control over your workout.In terms of which product I’d place as my overall winner, I would say the PowerBlock Elite Dumbbells set.
Whilst this product does cost a little more than some of the other products I’ve reviewed, I think it gives you a much more thorough workout overall, and also gives you more choice and control over what you are trying to achieve.
You can also purchase an expansion kit, to further develop your home gym, making it more of an investment than anything else.When shopping around for the best dumbbells for your particular requirements, always think carefully before parting with any cash.
There are some fantastic deals to be found online, and it’s simply not worth splashing the dollar on something which you’re not sure of.
Reviews are the way forward, to give you the information you need, and the five I have gone over in detail are certainly five of the best around currently.
Whether you go for my ultimate winner, or you opt for something more compact and lightweight, always be sure that you are purchasing quality and durability, so your product stands the test of time, and is up to the rigors of your workout regime, whether you’re an experienced gym-goer, or a newbie.