Does the Sole F80 Folding Treadmill stand up to its cost?

The Sole F80 folding treadmill has always competed with commercial machines, and thanks to recent upgrades, the new edition is more impressive than ever. This foldable cardio trainer has a spacious 22″ x 60″ running area, a thick belt, a commercial-grade 3.5 CHP motor, and an automated ramp with a maximum 15% grade.

It’s Bluetooth compatible so that you can sync to your device with the Sole fitness app. Through the fitness app, you can control programs and download workout information (no audio controls available). The Sole F80 is a compact treadmill that offers ten different workout programs (hill, fat burn, cardio, etc.) displayed in the 9” LCD screen.

The F80 supports multiple users and stores numerous results. There are two options for monitoring your heart rate on the F80: touch sensors in the handlebars and a wireless chest strap. The chest strap connects to the display wirelessly and will get more accurate results than the handlebars.

It also comes with a 2-ply Cushion Flex suspension system. This new technology has changed the way people run indoors, reducing the impact on joints by 40%. This is a fantastic feature for those who do suffer from joint pain, previous injuries, or are generally uncomfortable running.

Learn more in my complete review below

Sole F80 Folding Treadmill
Sole F80 Folding Treadmill

Product: Sole F80 Folding Treadmill

Price: For a great deal on this treadmill, merely go here on Amazon

Warranty: Frame lifetime / Motor lifetime / Deck lifetime / Electronics 5 years / Labor 2 years

My rating: 9/10

Amazon Affiliate Disclosure: I may earn commissions from purchases made through links in this post.

F80 Frame

As its name suggests, the Sole Fitness F80 folding treadmill has a folding design. The deck can be folded up, featuring an “easy assist” mechanism, which prevents it from dropping when unfolded. It also features a lever that locks it in place when folded up.

When in folded position, the machine’s dimensions are 48″L x 37″W x 72″H (122 x 94.5 x 183 cm), while when unfolded, it’s 83″L x 37″W x 58″H (211 x 94.5 x 147 cm). The front base rests on caster wheels, which facilitate the moving of the assembled machine.

However, even with these wheels, it’s rather challenging to move it because it weighs 265 lbs (120 kg). Thus, unfolding and assembling it also requires two people.

The frame is made out of steel and comes with anti-corrosive paint. It has a horseshoe design, which considerably enhances the machine’s stability. Most joints in the frame are welded, not bolted, an aspect reflected in the machine’s overall sturdiness.

There are only a few acrylic parts in the frame constructions, such as the joint covers of the console masts, for example, which only have a cosmetic role.

Sole F80 Folding Treadmill

Deck and running surface

The deck of the Sole F80 features solid construction, incorporating elements of the highest quality. To begin with, it uses 2.75″ high-grade, crowned rollers with sealed ball bearings for maximum durability and motion smoothness. These are similar to the ones used for the commercial-grade treadmills.

They’re also grounded to minimize the static effect. Of course, since the rollers are large, they offer more contact surface with the belt, which not only adds to the smoothness of the run, it also prolongs the belt and rollers’ life.

The deck integrates the Sole Cushion Flex suspension system, which absorbs up to 40% of the shock on your joints when running. However, it’s still a pretty firm deck, it won’t over flex or wobble when running, even if the user is close to the maximum supported weight. The machine’s deck is also wax lubricated, which reduces the strain on the motor during use.

The treadmill uses a commercial-grade belt, with several layers of different materials. It features two rubber layers over a PVC layer and a nylon backing. The PVC supplies the stretch-resistance, the rubber layers provide the belt’s durability, while the nylon reduces the static effect.

The belt’s dimensions are 60″L x 22″W (152 x 56 cm). It offers quite a large running surface, being able to accommodate users up to 6’5″ (196 cm) or even taller depending on their inseam length, without causing the “cramming” feeling generated by treadmills with smaller decks.

Sole F80 Folding Treadmill
Sole F80 Folding Treadmill

F80 Motor

The Sole Fitness F80 folding treadmill features a 3.5 CHP industrial quality motor, equipped with a large-diameter, zinc-coated, balanced flywheel. This flywheel reduces vibration, offering a more stable running surface.

It’s quite a powerful motor for a home-use treadmill, being able to support users up to 375 lbs (170 kg), at full running speed, for prolonged workouts, without overheating or choking.

The motor starts at 0.5 MPH speed and offers the possibility to adjust speed in 0.1 MPH increments. This is quite a plus, as you will be able to find the exact pace that feels the most comfortable with your workout. The transition between speed settings is done smoothly, taking several seconds, and giving you plenty of time to prepare and accommodate.

Since it’s a motorized treadmill, speed is controlled entirely from the console unit. You can adjust speed as you run, via the Manual mode, or, in case you’re using one of the preset workouts, the machine will adjust its speed automatically. There are also speed adjustment keys incorporated in the right grip of the treadmill.

One last aspect regards power requirements. Since it’s a motorized treadmill, it requires connection to a minimum 15 Amp, 110V circuit. It comes with a U.S. standard three-prong plug, not an adapter, and 6′ (1,80 m) of cable. The cable connects to the motor casing at the front. The treadmill also features an On/Off power switch.

Incline

This treadmill also features a motorized incline. As with speed, the slope is adjusted from the console, or via the keys incorporated in the left grip. You can adjust incline as you run, or, if you use one of the preset programs that involve incline, the machine will adapt incline automatically.

Sole F80 Folding Treadmill
Sole F80 Folding Treadmill

The maximum slope provided is 15%. It’s not as much as in commercial treadmills, which can offer up to a 40% incline or more. However, this particular feature considerably increases the workout possibilities on this machine.

Also, keep in mind that running at full speed, with the incline set at maximum, provides quite a challenge. Even a professional runner won’t be able to keep up for long with these settings.

The incline adjusts in increments of 1%. At 0% incline, the running surface is at approx — 8″ (20 cm) above the floor levels. At 15% incline, the front part of the deck will stand at about 12″ (30.5 cm) higher from the floor. Therefore, to determine if the room where the machine will be (used), has the right ceiling height, add at least 12″ (30.5 cm) to your height.

F80 Console

The F80 treadmill features a smaller display than the Sole F85. However, the integrated 9″ display is wide enough to supply excellent readability and has an LED blue backlight. The display indicates distance, speed, pace, pulse, calories, the selected program, and incline level.

The console offers ten workout programs and settings, including one manual mode, five preset programs, two custom user programs, and 2 HR programs. The Manual mode is the “free run” mode, which allows you to change speed and incline as you wish during your workout.

The preset programs include Hill, Fat Burn, Cardio, Strength, and Interval. The Custom User profiles allow you to create your programs, save them for re-use. And when creating a Custom Program, you will be required to input your age, weight, and desired time for your workout.

The HR programs focus on helping you keep a specific heart rate interval. And finally, this treadmill gives you the possibility to train via a 1/4 mile track function, great to have if you want to train on a professional level.

The console will track your pulse via the sensor incorporated in the front, small grips of the machine. However, it’s telemetry enabled and can read the pulse via a chest strap transmitter, which (is supplied) with the treadmill. Furthermore, It also works with the Polar class transmitters.

The console unit features keys for the gradual adjustment of speed and incline, but there also are keys for quick incline and speed adjustment. Each preset workout program has a separate key. Pause and Start keys (are also included), but the machine is only pausable for 5 minutes. After that, it will shut down automatically, and current values will reset.

Sole F80 Folding Treadmill
Accessories

When it comes to amenities and accessories, the Sole F80 includes quite a few. To begin with, it features a sound system consisting of two speakers placed on the sides of the monitor.

This sound system is compatible with most smartphones, tablets, and MP3 devices, which can be connected to the console via a standard cable with a 3.5 jack. The sound rendered is not the best, but it’s still better than the audio supplied by your phone or tablet integrated speaker(s).

The top part of the console integrates a set of fans, while the area under the display features a media tray that can host a book, magazine, or tablet.

Last but not least, the console’s dashboard has two built-in accessory compartments. However, there is also an accessory tray that you can connect to the console masts under the console to keep your water bottle, towel, etc.

F80 Assembly and Maintenance

The Sole F80 is not difficult to assemble, but this task does require two people, as the machine is heavy. The deck comes fully assembled, with the motor and lift motor in their place. The F80 comes with tools and owners manual.

Thus, to construct, you need to connect the console masts to the deck, connect the wires, and finally mount the console and the tablet tray. The whole process shouldn’t take more than 45 minutes.

Just as for any treadmill, when it comes to maintenance, the running surface must be kept clean, so you’ll have to vacuum it periodically and wipe it with a clean damp cloth. It’s also recommended to lubricate the belt after every 50 hours of use. A tube of lubricant comes with the machine.

Sole F80 Folding Treadmill

Features and Specifications

  • Assembled dimensions: 83L x 37W x 58H inches (211L x 94W x 147H cm)
  • Tread belt dimensions: 60L x 22W inches (152L x 56W cm)
  • Product weight: 265 lbs (120 kg)
  • Supported weight: 375 lbs (170 kg)
  • Motor: 3.5 CHP, DC type
  • Incline: Automatic, 0%-15%
  • Deck cushioning: Yes
  • Speed levels: 0.5-12 MPH.
  • Console: 10 training programs
  • Amenities: HR chest strap, sound system, cooling fan, tablet holder, bottle/accessory holders
  • Warranty: Frame lifetime / Motor lifetime / Deck lifetime / Electronics 5 years / Labor 2 years

Pros

  • Sturdy, heavy frame assembly;
  • Elegant design;
  • Folding deck;
  • Solid deck construction, similar to commercial treadmills;
  • Deck cushioning elements;
  • Rollers and belt designed to minimize the static effect;
  • Industrial quality, 3.5 CHP motor;
  • Offers speeds up to 12 MPH, the required speed for professional training;
  • Quiet drive;
  • Speed adjustments in 0.1 increments, offering the possibility to select the perfect pace for your inseam and workout;

    Sole F80 Folding Treadmill
    Sole F80 Folding Treadmill
  • Motorized incline, with a slope of up to 15%;
  • Speed and incline adjustment keys incorporated in lateral grips;
  • Front grips with pulse sensors;
  • The console is telemetry enabled and HR chest strap transmitter included;
  • Ten workout programs, including one manual, five preset, two user-profiles and two heart rate;
  • Various amenities, including cooling fans, sound system, media tray, accessory tray;
  • Easy to assemble;
  • Little maintenance required;
  • Great warranty plan.

Cons

  • No online connectivity;
  • A tablet or book may partially cover the console display when placed in the media tray;
  • It is a heavy machine, difficult to move and handle when fully assembled.

Sole F80 Folding Treadmill Summary

The Sole F80 is one of the best treadmills that you can get under the mark of $1,500. This machine offers impressive features, challenging workout programs, and won’t take up too much space in your home.

It’s a heavy-duty treadmill, with solid deck construction, similar to the commercial models. Its deck is also foldable, which makes it perfect for home use. It uses an industrial quality motor, which performs flawlessly at high speeds, even if the user is close to the maximum weight capacity.

When it comes to its fitness-oriented capabilities, it’s a perfect machine for cardio training, weight loss, stamina, and strength building, also offering the training set required by long-distance runners.

Last but not least, this machine offers excellent value for the price. It’s not the most affordable model, but its overall construction and range of features stand up to its cost.

I hope you found this article helpful and informative. If you have anything that you’d like to share or opinions about the content on my website, please do speak up. I look forward to your comments, questions, and the sharing of ideas.

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