NordicTrack Vault vs Tempo: Which home fitness studio is best?

NordicTrack Vault vs Tempo Studio

I have been testing out both the Tempo Studio and the NordicTrack Vault for quite some time. Today, I want to compare them across nine different categories to see which home fitness studio is best.

Video Comparison

Tempo vs Vault: Design

Both of these devices essentially have the same goal of being an all-in-one home fitness studio. But they each have very different perspectives on what a home gym could look like. The Tempo comes in white or charcoal and has a very large touchscreen on the front. Underneath the screen are doors that open up to reveal multiple different weight plates and clips. Behind the screen is a hollow opening that allows you to store your workout mat or foam roller. And lastly, there are small dumbbell holders on the back to store your dumbbells or barbell.

While the Tempo went for a more straightforward home gym design, the NordicTrack Vault by iFit is trying to disguise itself a bit more. The NordicTrack Vault comes in an all-black, carbon steel frame, with the entire front being the screen. What makes the Vault unique, though, is it has a function in a room outside of just being a home gym. When the Vault screen is not on or in use, it also functions as a stand-up mirror. The entire front of the Vault is on hinges that open up to reveal the dumbbell and kettlebell sets inside. 

Even though both of these devices have very different perspectives on what a home gym could look like, they are both very nice and sleek. I would say it is a tie when it comes to comparing the two designs.

Tempo vs Vault: Screen

While the NordicTrack Vault screen is embedded into a mirror, allowing you to see yourself from top to bottom, the Tempo screen is much larger and brighter. The Tempo screen measures forty-two inches while the Vault screen measures thirty-two inches.

The difference between the two screens is not huge, so this category is actually pretty close, but I have to go with the Tempo screen because it just makes the experience better have a screen ten inches bigger and much brighter. With Tempo, you get more of a sense that you are being trained by somebody, rather than watching a trainer on a television. 

Tempo Studio’s 42″ Screen

Studio vs Vault: Software

This is a category that the Tempo absolutely demolishes the Vault in. Not only is the screen better, but internally the Tempo is much faster and has much more processing power. This allows the 3D camera to count your reps, give feedback on your form, suggest weights during classes, and also adjust your weights on the screen with no issues.

The 32-inch touchscreen included with the Vault is still very nice and high-quality. But compared to the Tempo, which also includes movement tracking, rep counting, and all the additional high-tech features, it is very obvious the Tempo wins.

Studio vs Vault: Equipment

It is a little difficult to compare the Tempo Studio and the NordicTrack Vault in terms of the included equipment since the Tempo comes in various versions. But for this comparison, I am simply going to compare the Complete Vault with the Tempo Starter Set. These are the most similar in terms of price and what they come with. The biggest difference between these, I feel, is one focuses more on quality while the other focuses on quantity.

Without a doubt, the Tempo includes higher-quality equipment. The workout mat, Olympic Style dumbbells, and weight plates are all top-notch and very nice. However, one of the issues I had was because you only have one set of adjustable dumbbells, it severely impacts how you move through the workouts. You will find yourself constantly having to adjust the weights on the dumbbells throughout. Or, for the sake of convenience, you just end up using the same weight for multiple movements.

The other issue I had was the size. The Tempo plates are pretty large compared to a regular rubber dumbbell, and they can make some movements really awkward or almost impossible. Most people will probably not have any issues, but if you are smaller, you might find the included dumbbells to be fairly uncomfortable for various movements.

NordicTrack Vault Complete

The NordicTrack Vault includes six pairs of dumbbells, two kettlebells, and multiple resistance bands. Even though the quality of the Vault equipment is not the same as the Tempo, the dumbbells are more functional and easier to use. They are more comfortable for a variety of people and they allow you to take classes without constantly having to change your weights. For that reason, the Vault wins in this category.

Studio vs Vault: Class Selection

This is another category where the Tempo dominates the NordicTrack Vault, as the Tempo has a much larger library of workouts both on-demand and with their live classes. What is disappointing about the Vault is that this does not need to be the case. The workouts on the Vault come from iFit, so you would think they would have a ton to choose from. For some reason, they have decided not to use the entire iFit library – which includes thousands of workouts.

Instead, they offer just over a dozen programs that they pull all of their workouts from. This has not been updated in quite a while even though they have plans to continue expanding their library. To me, it makes no sense why they have not incorporated all of the other classes that they have available. So the Tempo wins in this category, but they win it primarily because the Vault and iFit have not included the vast majority of workouts that they should have available.

Studio vs Vault: Program Selection

The program selection is actually a category I find a bit weak for both the Vault and the Tempo. The Tempo has a good number of programs; however, the majority of the more complete programs require a barbell. Since we are only comparing the Tempo with the dumbbells to the NordicTrack Vault with the dumbbells, then the program selection on the Tempo is a lot weaker.

As I just mentioned, the NordicTrack Vault is also missing a lot of their programs, and they only offer a little over a dozen. But the dozen or so that they do offer are more complete than what the Tempo currently offers. So as far as program selection, the NordicTrack Vault is the winner. 

Studio vs Vault: Class Experience

The Tempo Studio certainly has more bells and whistles, and it is great to see your reps, a leaderboard, and get form feedback. You would think that they would easily win when it comes to class experience. But just because something has more features, does not mean it is better if those features are not good.

The form correction on the Tempo is a great idea with some great technology, but it is hardly utilized at all. I have only seen three different form corrections throughout the dozens of hours I have used it. While the rep counting and weight tracking are great, they do not really help a ton and I think most people are not going to really utilize this at all after the first week.

The Vault definitely does not have near as many features as the Tempo, but where they surpass the Tempo with class experience is that with the Vault you do not have to constantly change the weights between every movement. You can just grab the next set of dumbbells and go back and forth between a variety of weights. This just makes the entire experience of taking the class a whole lot smoother. Because of that, this category is going to be another tie since one includes more features and the other includes more functions.

Studio vs Vault: Stat Tracking

Stat tracking is another easy win for the Tempo, because the Vault simply does not offer it. They do not have a stat-tracking page, and you cannot track what you have done in any of the prior workouts or the weights that you have used. The Vault does not even offer a calendar, so you can’t see how many workouts you have done week to week or month to month.

The Tempo, on the other hand, provides quite a lot in terms of showing you how much you have done per week or per month, what movements you have done, and what weights you have used for each of those movements. The stat tracking on the Tempo is way more complete and wins this category hands down.

Studio vs Vault: Ecosystem

If you want a home fitness studio that will be one part of your home gym that might grow over time, then you will want to invest in something that has a large ecosystem. For the Tempo, you can definitely expand upon it by purchasing the kettlebell, barbell, and other equipment. Those things will allow you to take more classes on the Tempo, but they do not offer any other complete devices as of right now.

Since the NordicTrack Vault is part of the iFit family, it allows you to expand your home gym even further. iFit is utilized in many other devices like treadmills, rowers, bikes, and more. So if you have the Tempo and you want to add a bike to your home gym, that is a whole other membership that you will have to pay for, whereas for the NordicTrack Vault you will only have to pay for one iFit membership, which will cover you for a variety of products. Since the iFit ecosystem is so much larger than Tempo is currently, that gives an easy win to the Vault in this category.

iFIT offers a larger Ecosystem which includes bikes, treadmills, rowers and more

Which home fitness studio comes out on top?

The final score across all nine categories is two ties, the Tempo Studio with four wins and the NordicTrack Vault with three wins. Even though I like both products a lot, I have to say the Tempo is the winner. But I think the biggest deciding factor for most people comes down to if they want the highest quality product that allows for the most expansive strength training. If that is the case, then the Tempo is clearly what you will want. If you would like to find out more about the Tempo Studio, you can check out our full review.

But if you prefer something that offers a bit more functionality in terms of working out with dumbbells, and you like that your home gym is also a mirror, then the NordicTrack Vault might be your best bet. Plus, it is the better option if you are considering growing your home fitness studio over time with other fitness equipment like a bike, treadmill, or rower. If you would like to find out more about the NordicTrack Vault, you can check out our full review.

Buy NordicTrack Vault here. (link includes Free Shipping, Delivery, and 1 month of iFIT)

Buy Tempo Studio here. ($450 off for a limited time!)


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