After researching over 150 barbells and using nearly 85 of them, we've determined that the Rogue Bar 2.0 is the best multi-purpose Olympic Barbell and the Rogue Ohio Power Bar is the best powerlifting bar for most people for 2020. Factoring in price, warranty, performance, and availability, these bars stand out amongst the rest. We'd rather not have the same company hold both of the top spots, but it's hard to argue against the value these bars provide.

A barbell is the most versatile tool in any commercial or home gym. However, thanks to the exponential growth in both barbell training and home gyms there are now hundreds of companies producing thousands of different barbells. This is both good and bad. It's good because you have a plethora of options to choose from to improve your squat, deadlift, bench press, as well as Olympic Lifts and general training movements. It's bad because it's suddenly that much harder to decide which bar(s) to spend your hard earned money on.

That's where we come in. In this guide, we want to give you the best value barbells for most people by choosing the best Olympic Barbells for 2020. If you're a powerlifter and want further suggestions, we suggest checking out our Best Powerlifting Barbell Guide here. Now, I present to you, the best barbells for dollar out of the hundreds that we own and test.

Best Multi-Purpose Barbell
Rogue Bar 2.0
(6 ratings & reviews)
This is the next generation of the 28.5MM Olympic bar that helped launch the revolution. Now fully machined and assembled at the Rogue factory in Columbus, Ohio, the Rogue Bar 2.0 represents the highest level of precision engineering with a wide range of new features—including stronger 190 PSI steel, durable composite bushings, and CNC-machined groove sleeves with customizable color bands, available here Like the original flagship Rogue Bar, Version 2.0 still offers convenient dual knurl marks for both Olympic and powerlifting, with a black zinc coated shaft and bright zinc sleeves. The addition of a groove in the sleeve enables athletes and coaches to more easily identify and differentiate bars by changing out the bands. The bar comes standard with Rogue-branded bands, but you can swap them out with any of the additional color options available, or even use any custom, personalized band that matches the dimensions. The Rogue Bar 2.0 is among the first in our arsenal to use composite bushings—a self-lubricating material often found in hi-tech aerospace equipment and military vehicles. For intense, high-rep training, these bushings dramatically minimize friction to both provide a reliable spin and help extend the shelf life of the bar itself. The Rogue Bar helped us cement our reputation at the CrossFit Games and beyond, and we believe the Rogue Bar 2.0 is a worthy successor to that mantle.

The Rogue Bar 2.0 is one of the most popular barbells in the world. Combining Rogue Fitness' attention to detail, outstanding customer service, and large manufacturing power, the Rogue Bar 2.0 can perform for nearly every movement or training style imaginable. Not too long ago a barbell featuring 190k PSI tensile strength steel, a bushing rotation system, and high-quality knurl with a lifetime warranty would have cost you nearly $1,000. Thankfully, due to the growth of home gym owners and the popularity of basic barbell training, there are now a seemingly endless amount of high-quality barbells for under $300. Although the Rogue Bar 2.0 is our current pick for the best Olympic Barbell for most people, there are many others worth considering.

For 2020, we reassessed the barbells on the market including what we had on hand. Although there have been a lot of new options come to market, including Cerakote, Stainless Steel, as well as budget-friendly options, the Rogue Bar 2.0 is still the best value barbell for most people.

Best Powerlifting Barbell
Rogue Ohio Power Bar
(19 ratings & reviews)
Fully machined and assembled in Columbus, OH, the 29MM Rogue Ohio Power Bar features a 205,000 PSI steel shaft (200,000 PSI for Stainless), single powerlifting knurl marks, and center knurling. The bar’s knurl pattern is deep and coarse without being sharp or abrasive, and the 29MM shaft diameter and high tensile strength result in little to no flex or whip. This makes the Ohio Power Bar a perfectly honed workhorse for the bench, squat, and deadlift. The 45LB Ohio Power Bar includes bronze bushings, a snap ring design, and 16.25" of loadable sleeve length. When ordering, you can select from three finish options: Black Zinc shaft with Bright Zinc sleeves Stainless Steel shaft with Chrome sleeves Bare Steel Rogue also manufactures a 20KG Ohio Power Bar, with friction-welded sleeves and 16.25" loadable sleeve space. The Ohio Power Bar’s 29MM diameter steel shaft boasts a tensile strength of 205,000 PSI (200,000 PSI for Stainless), delivering superior rigidity and virtually zero whip/flex. Machined and assembled in Columbus, Ohio, the bar also features a snap-ring design and quality bronze bushings for a smooth, consistent feel. The bar includes single powerlifting marks and a center knurl, each featuring a deep, coarse pattern that produces a reliable grip / stick without being sharp or abrasive. Perfecting this knurl pattern is both a science and an art. Every bar shaft is machined in Columbus on new Haas machines (built in the USA) and fine-tuned and personally tested by the Rogue team. Depending on the look and feel you prefer, there is a version of the Ohio Power Bar right in your wheelhouse. The Zinc option (black shaft, bright sleeves) provides excellent corrosion resistance, the Bare Steel creates a classic look and natural feel, and the new Stainless Steel variation (with Chrome sleeves) strikes a balance between the two. The Ohio Power Bar’s quality construction is backed by Rogue’s Lifetime Warranty against bending. This is a barbell equipped for high intensity, everyday use. Please Note: The warranty does not cover damage due to negligent or faulty use, alteration, maintenance, storage or handling by the user, i.e., dropping the bar on a box, bench, spotter arms or pins in a power rack, excessive dropping with insufficient or damaged bumpers, or excessive dropping with iron plates, and similar usage. Any specific issues regarding a Rogue product with which a customer is not satisfied will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

The Rogue Ohio Power Bar, also known as the Rogue OPB, has been the go-to power bar for most people for some time. It's our Top Pick for the best powerlifting barbell and for good reason. Rogue has combined their large manufacturing power, attention to detail, and ability to create industry-leading products at great prices to create, in our opinion, the best power bar for any strength level. Whether you’re a beginner learning the squat, deadlift, and bench or an experienced lifter, the Rogue Ohio Power Bar can handle whatever you throw at it.

The Rogue Ohio Power Bar must be felt to experience the quality differences between it and it’s competition. The part of a power bar that should have the most attention applied to it is its knurling, and in our opinion and many we’ve polled, the Ohio Power Bar has some of the best feeling knurling on the market. It’s aggressive, but not sharp thanks to its volcanic design. In addition to the knurling, the Rogue Ohio Power Bar features a 205K PSI Tensile Strength shaft, bronze bushings, and enough shaft coatings to satisfy anyone’s interests. Whether you choose the Bare Steel, Zinc, Cerakote, or our favorite, Stainless Steel version, you’ll be satisfied. Also, if you need a bar for a powerlifting meet, the KG version is IPF-approved.

Runner-Up Multi-Purpose Bar
American Barbell Training Bar
(9 ratings & reviews)
The American Barbell Training Bar is a solid, versatile barbell for just about any application.  We've tested it against the day-to-day abuse of heavy training and it's proven to last. The bar shaft is made from precision ground alloy steel and the strength of the shaft is tested with every shipment of raw material to ensure we have a consistent 190,000 PSI tensile strength. This attention to detail also allows for excellent whip and long-term performance of our bars.  The shaft and sleeves are finished in hard chrome for added durability and corrosion resistance, and the knurl pattern is crisp with just the right amount of tack. The bar sleeves are precision machined and each one is coated with hard chrome for protection against dropping and impact. Sleeves rotate around high strength composite bushings used in aircraft and automotive industries for smooth rotation.Application: Olympic Weightlifting, Weightlifting, CompetitionBushing SystemCenter knurl: NoShaft: Hard Chrome CoatingSleeve: Precision Ground Steel with a Hard Chrome CoatingIWF SpecificationMade in USAWarranty: Limited Warranty*

American Barbell doesn't get nearly as much love as we think they should. Their equipment is nearly all made in the USA and their attention to detail is outstanding. The American Barbell Training Bar is one of the best Olympic barbells for the value in the world. It has a great, medium-depth knurling that grips well with chalk and does well for barbell cycling if you're a CrossFit athlete and is also fine for max effort lifts for Powerlifters and Olympic Weightlifters (although we'd recommend specialized bars.) It's also completely made in the US with a lifetime warranty.

We've tested and reviewed the AB Training Bar for over three years now and still like it as much as we did on day one. This is an outstanding do-it-all barbell. If you want better corrosion resistance, than we suggest getting the Cerakote version for $25 more here.

Runner-Up Powerlifting Bar
Buddy Capps Texas Power Bar
(8 ratings & reviews)
The most popular powerlifting bar on the market, Manufactured by Buddy Capps. Used in National & World Championship Meets since 1980. We are still using the same USA steel mill we started with in 1980. The shafts are center less ground, demagnetized and oiled to the max before shipping to Texas. Once at our production facility, we machine and then knurl each shaft to create a grip that is still the best in the industry. Texas Power Bars have different finishes available including black zinc and chrome plating. The sleeves are are available raw or chrome plated. Big tensile strength numbers sound very impressive and we have them but, the proof is on the platform. Hundreds of state, national, international and world powerlifting records have been and continue to be set and broken on the The Texas Power Bar. Length - 84" Weight - 20kg (45 lb w/ basic collars) Diameter - 28.5 mm Capacity - 1500 lbs Finish - Shaft is black zinc; ends are raw

The Buddy Capps Texas Power Bar is one of the most legendary barbells ever made. It’s broken more world records and been used in more gyms than probably any other bar. We like the Texas Power Bar and know many find it the be the best power bar ever made. If you want to start an argument, just say that there's a better power bar than TPB (we do this often.) The knurling on the Texas Power Bar is aggressive and sharp, which has the benefit of staying in your hands during a max pull, however, it also has the disadvantage of ripping your callouses off.

We chose the Texas Power Bar as our runner-up for the best power bar and not our number one pick for a few reasons which we’ll list in more detail further in the article. However, the main reason is that we see it as a bar that is yes, extremely popular and a good performer, but, has been passed by bars with higher tensile strength and that utilize newer machinery and offer more options like Cerakote, stainless steel, and other materials. The Texas Power Bar is also 28.5MM in diameter, which at one time was the standard, but has since been replaced by 29MM barbells. For these reasons and many more, we believe the Texas Power Bar is still an outstanding barbell, however, we believe our top pick, the Rogue Ohio Power Bar is a superior value.

Multi-Purpose Bar Upgrade Pick
Rogue Ohio Bar - Stainless Steel
(9 ratings & reviews)
The new stainless steel version of our 20KG Rogue Ohio Bar is machined and assembled in Columbus, Ohio, and features a 200,000 PSI tensile strength shaft, chrome sleeves, and an exclusive Rogue knurl pattern that’s 100% in its original, machined form for an unmatched feel. With quality composite bushings and dual knurl marks, the Stainless Steel Ohio Bar is optimized for both Olympic lifts and Powerlifting—delivering a firm but non-abrasive grip, a consistent spin, and a unique balance of whip and rigidity. We call it the Ohio Bar because we think it represents more than just the Rogue brand. It’s a testament to where we work, who we are, and the pride we feel in making the best American-made weightlifting bars on the market. To check out the same bar with zinc or black oxide finish options, see our standard Ohio Bar page. This high tensile strength steel is manufactured in the USA and has proven to be one of the best steel variants for a multi-purpose barbell. Each barbell shaft is ground and polished prior to machining, allowing for a very smooth finish. Every bar shaft is machined in Columbus, Ohio. A great deal of pride is built into each bar as the knurling process is an art. We spent months working on the knurl we believe to be the best for the Ohio Bar. To test the knurl it is more a beer tasting process than exact measurement. There is a look and feel that go into testing every bar. With no plating, the knurl on the Stainless Steel Ohio Bar is left exactly how we machined it, providing a great feel that cannot be achieved with other finishes. It’s similar to the knurl feel from a bare steel shaft, but with better corrosion resistance. The combination of a stainless steel shaft and chrome sleeves also creates a sharp look with few equals. Please Note: Rogue recommends using a synthetic bristle brush, NOT a steel brush, to clean a stainless steel shaft. Steel on steel can cause rusting over time. The Ohio Bar is assembled with the same black composite bushings as the Rogue Bar 2.0, which act as bearing surfaces between the bar sleeve and bar shaft. This is a very robust way of building a barbell, and can produce a smooth, consistent spin not possible with lesser import bars. Each bar comes with an “Ohio Bar Card” that has the initials of the Rogue team member that built it. The multi-purpose Ohio Bar will have normal “whip” during Olympic weightlifting and enough stiffness to hold for heavy Powerlifting. The steel in this bar is proven as an excellent choice for weightlifters. Specifications: Manufactured in Columbus, OH Diameter: 28.5MM Weight: 20KG Stainless Steel Shaft, Chrome Sleeves Dual Knurl Marks for Oly and Power lifts No Center Knurl 200,000 PSI Tensile Strength Steel Composite Bushings for Reliable Spin 16.40" loadable sleeve length Rogue branded endcaps

The Ohio Bar and Rogue Bar 2.0 from Rogue Fitness are very similar bars. For this reason, we recommend the Rogue Bar 2.0 due to it's lower price point for what is essentially the same bar. However, if money is not a worry and you want a bar that will best withstand corrosion, we recommend the stainless steel version of The Ohio Bar from Rogue Fitness as a step above our top pick.

The majority of people do not need to spend $350 on a barbell and the benefits of stainless steel are not vastly superior to traditional barbell steel. This said, the corrosion resistance of stainless steel along with the superior knurling (due to no coating) are great to have if you're looking for a general purpose barbell and the increased cost is not an issue for you.

Power Bar Upgrade Pick
Kabuki Strength New Generation Power Bar
(7 ratings & reviews)
This bar is our IPF spec, multi purpose, power bar. It I a 29mm bar, with aggressive but not overly sharp knurl, and standard powerlifting markings.  What is it about our new generation bars that sets them apart? With a tensile strength of over 250k PSI and a rockwell hardness of 51 RC, this bar is harder than any other currently bar on market. What this means in practical terms is that the knurl won’t wear down over the years, leaving you with a bar that is performing sub par compared to when it was new. Even where the bar contacts the rack it will maintain that fine, tacky, aggressive knurl just like the day it was unboxed.  The knurl itself is the other piece of engineering that went into this bar this bar that we are proud of. We wanted to create something that grabbed well but wasn’t so unnecessarily sharp that it cut your hands rather than grabbing. The knurl of our bar is finer than most barbells you will find, giving the knurl more points per square inch and creating more surface area  to create friction against.  Lastly, another small feature to differentiate our bar is the center marks in the knurl. We wanted to leave the power bar with a continuous center knurl so as to not lose any of the grip effects for squatting, but still have marking to indicate the bars center for alignment purposes. We fully stand behind our product and believe in it wholeheartedly, which is why each bar comes with a 5 year warranty against any type of manufacturing defect. What this means is if your bar begins to wear prematurely, we will repair or replace it free of charge.  While our bar does have a higher tensile strength – what this doesn’t mean is that we will warranty against customer induced damage such as dropping the bar into metal safety pins. Depending on many variables such as the height and weight used this is just simply too much force into one area of the bar to not cause permanent deformation.

The Kabuki Strength New Generation Power Bar is our upgrade pick due to its insanely high tensile strength, outstanding knurling, and price. The New Generation Power Bar is the most expensive barbell on our list (certainly not the most expensive available), but for those that want something stronger than our other picks (not that we feel it’s needed) and prefer a finer knurling than our top pick, than this may be the bar for you.

After using the New Generation Power Bar since its release, we can confidently recommend it despite its high price tag. This bar is the strongest available with a tested 250K+ PSI Tensile Strength steel shaft and it is stiff. At 29MM, the Kabuki Strength New Generation Power Bar is made to take any amount of weight you can throw at it and keep on performing. The knurl utilizes a similar volcanic pattern to the Rogue Ohio Power Bar, but is much finer. We had trouble saying which one we liked best, but suffice it to say, we equally enjoy using both during training. The New Generation Power Bar also comes in a variety of finishes that should satisfy anyone’s needs, although we would like to see a Stainless Steel version.

Multi-Purpose Bar Budget Pick
FringeSport Wonder Bar V2 20KG Barbell
(10 ratings & reviews)
The Wonder Bar reigns as the nucleus of the barbell universe here at Fringe. We set out on a noble quest to design and build the best bar suited for commercial gyms, and make it available to you at a home gym price. We completed our hero’s journey and now offering our reward to you delights us. This versatile bar will serve almost everyone well. You can set world records on this bar, and use it for most training. If you're a seasoned athlete or an affiliate owner, consider stepping up to the Bomba Bar V2 (made in America) or even our Fringe Sport Weightlifting Barbell. Here are a couple of Wonder Bar features to be aware of:The 28mm shaft diameter is great for Olympic movements.The needle bearing cartridges provide great spin, but may require oiling in time.If you’re new to lifting or building a home gym and need more info to learn what type of barbell works best for you, here’s a helpful guide.We have an informal state motto here in Texas- “come and take it.” Not only do we want you to do this with the Wonder Bar V2, but we’d like to put our own spin on it. Fringe it, or forget it. WONDER BAR V2 SPECS:The Wonder Bar V2 comes in a bushing version or bearing cartridges version. Except for that, the specs for both are the same.Bushing rotation or bearing collarKiller all-black Zinc finishTensile strength: 205,000 PSIYield strength: 160,000 PSIWeight capacity: 1,600 lbWeight: 20kilograms / ~44 poundsCollars: Bushing (Yellow "W") Bronze Oil Lite Bushing Rotation or Bearing (Green "W") 4 Needle Bearing Cartridges Per CollarWhip: StiffSpin: Moderate (Bushing) or Fast (Bearing)Best Use: Garage Gym or WODing. Read below for Bushing vs. Bearing differences.Material: Alloy Steel, Black ZincPlatedLength: 86 inchesSleeve Specs:16 inches Length and 2" diameterShaft Specs: true28mm diameterKnurl: Dual Knurling - Double Ring IWF + IPF Knurling (No Center Knurl)Smooth knurl depth- neither a cheese grater nor too softWarranty: Lifetime Warranty against manufacturer's defects.

If you'd rather not spend more than $200, although we'd suggest you do, the FringeSport Wonder Bar Olympic Barbell is a more than capable quality barbell from a company with an excellent reputation. The FringeSport Wonder Bar features 205k PSI tensile strength steel, a 28mm shaft, and a black zinc coating on both the shaft and sleeves.

Although we'll go into more detail on why The Rogue Bar 2.0 ranks above the Wonder Bar and others, the smaller 28mm shaft and black zinc coating on the sleeves are less than optimal for the majority of trainees. The Wonder Bar does feature a lifetime warranty and although we don't believe FringeSport is as capable of servicing warranties as Rogue Fitness, they are a company we trust. Put simply, for $200, the Wonder Bar from FringeSport is a good barbell.

Power Bar Budget Pick
CAP OB-86PBCK Power Bar
(3 ratings & reviews)
CAP Barbell 2" solid power squat bar is designed to handle over 1000 lbs. This 7' bar has a black oxide finish and comes with proper hand placement markers and comfortable center knurling. This is the bar of choice for squats, bench presses, and deadlifts. Collars not included. Accommodates all 2" plates.Black oxide finishHand placement markers and comfortable center knurlingIdeal for squats, bench presses, and deadliftsCollars not includedAccommodates all 2 inch plates

If you are just starting out with barbell training or want a “beater bar” and need a decent, but very affordable option, we’d suggest the CAP OB-86PBCK Power Bar. It has by far the worst specs of any bar on this list, but it also has the lowest price and, simply put, gets the job done.

When it comes to having a good training bar that you can really beat up, the Cap OB-86PBCK is the bar for the job. Squats, presses, pendlay rows, landmines, etc. - if its an activity that can be done with a barbell it can be done with the Cap OB-86B.  It’s one of our favorite beater bars due to its durability and price and is our worry-free bar to rack pull with (mainly because if it bends, we’re not worried about it.) Yes, the knurling will get fatigued and worn overtime and the sleeves will most likely get scraped, but it will continue to perform when we need it too.

What Characteristics to Look for in a Barbell?

There are five physical characteristics of an Olympic Barbell that will cause distinctions between the wide array of bars available today. Those are:

  1. Steel
  2. Knurling
  3. Spin
  4. Whip
  5. Finish

The steel is the most important part of the bar and is more than just looks; it is the essence of the barbell. To determine the quality of steel used, two of the most telling specifications are the tensile strength and yield strength. Do not listen to anyone who tries to tell you that a bar is 1,000 pound test or 1,500 pound test. This is a made up fantasy designed to satisfy buyers limited amount of knowledge and is more often than not seen on very cheap bars.

Companies test the tensile and yield strength of the barbell steel through static and dynamic testing. To give a simple example, a static test would load an enormous amount of weight (upwards of a ton) on each side of the bar and then slowly take the weight off to see if the bar returns back to being straight. A dynamic test is much more telling and involves tracking how the bar bends when dropped with a certain amount of weight. There is much more variance in this sort of test than the static test between manufacturers.

All that being said, every bar will bend if handled improperly. I don't care if you're using a $1,000 Eleiko, if you drop it on a pin with 400 lbs, it's going to bend.

Every bar will bend if handled improperly. I don't care if you're using a $1,000 Eleiko, if you drop it on a pin with 400 lbs, it's going to bend.

The next characteristic of a bar is the knurling. Knurling is what allows your hands to grip to the bar, especially when combined with chalk. For most people, a medium knurling is best due to it being sticky enough to grip, yet smooth enough for comfort. Although there are great bars with more aggressive knurling, for the majority of training purposes, it's less than desired.

Spin is determined by the rotation system used in the barbell. There are two main types of rotation systems used in barbells today – a bushing system or a bearing system. Bearings will spin quicker overall, but they also cost more and will likely not stand up to abuse as well as bushings. For this reason, we recommend for the most people to purchase a barbell with a bushing system that either uses brass or nylon bushings. A bushing rotation system will provide a smoot and consistent spin that will require little maintenance and should last for many decades.

Whip is determined by the load on the bar, the materials used, the method of steel processing and the diameter of the shaft. For most people, some whip is desired for the occasional olympic lifts, but overall the bar should be relatively stiff. Due to this, the bars we recommend are going to be made of carbon steels and not molybdenum alloys.

Finally, the finish of the bar comes down to personal preference and the environment it will be used in. Although a raw steel bar is generally regarded as the best ‘feeling' barbell, it will oxidize quicker than if a finish was applied. For the price range we recommend, more often than not, the bar will feature a black oxide as it is middle of the road in terms of oxidation and is cheaper to apply than hard chrome.

How We Picked and Tested the Barbells

To compile our list of barbells and determine the weed through the best Olympic Barbells for 2020, we researched all of the major manufacturers as well as reaching out to industry experts and various forums such as r/homegym (quick plug: I'm a mod of this subreddit, so I suggest you subscribe.) In addition to this, we went to Garage Gym Reviews HQ to rank and test what we have on hand (around 20 bars currently.) After researching around 55 barbells worth your time and money, we narrowed it down to our top picks, all of which we acquired to test out in house.

There is an overwhelmingly large amount of barbells available for purchase today. Due to the various specializations of training, each category will have barbells that hit every price point from $100 all the way up to $1,000 plus. An Olympic Weightlifting Barbell cannot be compared to a Powerlifting Barbell or vice versa. Due to this, we stuck to barbells that were more situated toward general training. If you want to use these bars for Powerlifting, they're stiff enough to do so. If you want to use them for Olympic Weightlifting or CrossFit, go for it. The spin, knurl, and whip will work for the movements within those sports.

The bars we picked to test could all be considered great for general purpose training and at prices worth considering. Although there may be “better” bars at higher price points, the value proposition is not higher than the ones within this guide. Ultimately, after some deliberation, we narrowed down our specifications to the following list of features ordered in no particular order.

  • Overall Construction: Although the barbells we recommend are not the most expensive you can find, they need to be constructed well to provide a reliable experience over its lifetime. A barbell should last a LONG time; attention to detail provided by the manufacturer will aid in reliability and consistency.
  • Tensile Strength of Steel: The tensile strength of the steel used should be a minimum of 130K PSI and preferably much higher (around 190k.) A barbell with 130K PSI should only be used if you don't plan on using over 500 lbs on the bar. This is much higher than the average lifted by most people and the only bar that features this low of tensile strength is our budget pick.
  • Knurling: The knurling should be consistent and not overly aggressive. A medium knurl is preferred that will grip well when chalk is used. A center knurl, although great for Powerlifting is not needed for the majority of people. The reason is due to how it will rough up the neck and chin area of the body when used for power cleans and front squats.
  • Spin: The rotation system should be a bushing system due to cost and for use on lifts like the squat and bench where excess spin isn't always desired. The spin should be consistent and slow to a stop, not an abrupt halt.
  • Finish: The barbell should have some sort of finish to prevent against oxidation such as surface rust.
  • Price: The price should be in accordance with the features offered. Value is more important than a low sticker price and what we've found is that for general purpose barbells, there isn't a reason to spend over $400 on a barbell. If you want a specialized Olympic Weightlifting Barbell or Powerlifting Barbell than spending above $400 may provide a better value, but not for the general purpose category.
  • Warranty: A lifetime warranty has come to be the standard offered by barbell manufacturers. The company servicing the warranty must be considered, however; a lifetime warranty is of little use if the company offering it is no longer around to service it.

During testing, we performed all of the major barbell movements including squat, deadlift, bench, overhead press, clean and jerk, and snatch. We blind tested the feel of the knurling, observed the spin of the sleeves using a 25 lb bumper plate, weighed and measured the diameter of the shafts for accuracy, and tested the oxidation of the bars over 3 weeks while left in an often opened garage in the midwest. Finally, we asked for the opinion of others on what barbell they view to be the best value for the majority of trainees.

The Best Multi-Purpose Barbell: Rogue Bar 2.0

Top Pick
Rogue Bar 2.0
(6 ratings & reviews)
This is the next generation of the 28.5MM Olympic bar that helped launch the revolution. Now fully machined and assembled at the Rogue factory in Columbus, Ohio, the Rogue Bar 2.0 represents the highest level of precision engineering with a wide range of new features—including stronger 190 PSI steel, durable composite bushings, and CNC-machined groove sleeves with customizable color bands, available here Like the original flagship Rogue Bar, Version 2.0 still offers convenient dual knurl marks for both Olympic and powerlifting, with a black zinc coated shaft and bright zinc sleeves. The addition of a groove in the sleeve enables athletes and coaches to more easily identify and differentiate bars by changing out the bands. The bar comes standard with Rogue-branded bands, but you can swap them out with any of the additional color options available, or even use any custom, personalized band that matches the dimensions. The Rogue Bar 2.0 is among the first in our arsenal to use composite bushings—a self-lubricating material often found in hi-tech aerospace equipment and military vehicles. For intense, high-rep training, these bushings dramatically minimize friction to both provide a reliable spin and help extend the shelf life of the bar itself. The Rogue Bar helped us cement our reputation at the CrossFit Games and beyond, and we believe the Rogue Bar 2.0 is a worthy successor to that mantle.

Of all the bars we tested, The Rogue Bar 2.0 had the best balance between quality and affordability. Every bar in this guide is a good value, but Rogue Fitness has been the innovator in this category for some time and the Rogue Bar 2.0 is a shining example of how great a barbell under $300 can be.

The Rogue Bar 2.0 was designed with the CrossFit Games in mind. In fact, the bar that has been most often seen and used in the CrossFit Games just so happens to be this exact bar. Whether you participate in a CrossFit style of training or not, it's hard to argue that CrossFit doesn't utilize a wide array of exercises, thus proving that the Rogue Bar 2.0 is great for general purpose training.

The first thing you notice when looking at the Rogue Bar 2.0 is the unique bands on the sleeves. First off, the bands have practically zero functionality in terms of protecting the bar. They are there for looks, and although unnecessary, they look pretty cool and can be interchanged with different colors. For gym owners, this is a great opportunity to produce your own bands and use your branding for a consistent look.

When you begin to look closer at the bar, you start to see how precise of an instrument it is; the knurling is a prime example of this. Rogue Fitness has invested more money in the tools designed to cut knurling than likely any company in the world. The reason for this is simple, Rogue is producing and selling more barbells than anyone else. In order to keep their reputation as an industry leader not only are they focusing on building new products, but also improving previous best sellers. The Rogue Bar 2.0 as you can see is the second iteration of Rogue's flagship general training bar. It is now made in the USA at Rogue's newest state of the art facility.

The knurling on the Rogue Bar 2.0 is exactly what you'd like out of a barbell that will be used in a jack of all trades manner. Aggressive enough to grip during max lifts, especially while using chalk, yet passive enough to prevent your hands from looking like they just went through a meat grinder. Rogue, at the request of many, has started to extend the knurling all the way to the sleeves of most all their barbells. The advantage of this for those with bad mobility or long arms is they can spread their hands out to the sleeves on movements like the snatch and still have grip.

The black zinc coating that covers the shaft of the Rogue 2.0 will continue to look great if oiled continually. If you're anything like me and don't enjoy doing much maintenance on your bars, then it will likely end up looking like the Rogue Ohio Bar I've been using for over 3 years.

All black zinc coating will fade over time, but it doesn't affect the performance of the bar. If you would like the bar to always look like the day it came, then we suggest choosing our upgrade pick, the Rogue SS Ohio Bar.

The sleeves of the Rogue 2.0 Bar are machined with the same attention to detail as the knurling. There is a slight ribbed pattern on the sleeves that provide both a great noise when plates are slid on as well as a grip. This allows the plates, whether bumpers or iron, to keep from sliding off during use (we also always recommend the use of collars.)

If you go through Rogue's barbell library, you'll likely see a very similar bar known as the Rogue Ohio Bar. This bar is essentially the same as the Rogue 2.0 except with different bushings. The Rogue Ohio Bar uses bronze while our top pick uses composite bushings. We were unable to notice any difference between the two in our testing in regards to spin both without and with load. We've also been unable to notice any differences in the long-term durability of composite vs. bronze. However, composite bushings are self lubricating and are used for much more important matters than lifting weights in your garage. Things like getting astronauts to space.

The spin of the bar is consistent and reliable; it does not spin like an Eleiko, but it's also about $700 less. I never had the thought while testing the Rogue 2.0 that "I wish this bar had more spin" and I don't think you will either.

One of the standout features of the Rogue 2.0 Bar that you hopefully won't ever have to use is the lifetime warranty. Rogue is known for their outstanding customer service, and if your bar should ever malfunction or take a turn that is less than straight, they will help you solve the problem.

The Best Power Bar: Rogue Ohio Power Bar

Best Power Bar
Rogue Ohio Power Bar
(19 ratings & reviews)
Fully machined and assembled in Columbus, OH, the 29MM Rogue Ohio Power Bar features a 205,000 PSI steel shaft (200,000 PSI for Stainless), single powerlifting knurl marks, and center knurling. The bar’s knurl pattern is deep and coarse without being sharp or abrasive, and the 29MM shaft diameter and high tensile strength result in little to no flex or whip. This makes the Ohio Power Bar a perfectly honed workhorse for the bench, squat, and deadlift. The 45LB Ohio Power Bar includes bronze bushings, a snap ring design, and 16.25" of loadable sleeve length. When ordering, you can select from three finish options: Black Zinc shaft with Bright Zinc sleeves Stainless Steel shaft with Chrome sleeves Bare Steel Rogue also manufactures a 20KG Ohio Power Bar, with friction-welded sleeves and 16.25" loadable sleeve space. The Ohio Power Bar’s 29MM diameter steel shaft boasts a tensile strength of 205,000 PSI (200,000 PSI for Stainless), delivering superior rigidity and virtually zero whip/flex. Machined and assembled in Columbus, Ohio, the bar also features a snap-ring design and quality bronze bushings for a smooth, consistent feel. The bar includes single powerlifting marks and a center knurl, each featuring a deep, coarse pattern that produces a reliable grip / stick without being sharp or abrasive. Perfecting this knurl pattern is both a science and an art. Every bar shaft is machined in Columbus on new Haas machines (built in the USA) and fine-tuned and personally tested by the Rogue team. Depending on the look and feel you prefer, there is a version of the Ohio Power Bar right in your wheelhouse. The Zinc option (black shaft, bright sleeves) provides excellent corrosion resistance, the Bare Steel creates a classic look and natural feel, and the new Stainless Steel variation (with Chrome sleeves) strikes a balance between the two. The Ohio Power Bar’s quality construction is backed by Rogue’s Lifetime Warranty against bending. This is a barbell equipped for high intensity, everyday use. Please Note: The warranty does not cover damage due to negligent or faulty use, alteration, maintenance, storage or handling by the user, i.e., dropping the bar on a box, bench, spotter arms or pins in a power rack, excessive dropping with insufficient or damaged bumpers, or excessive dropping with iron plates, and similar usage. Any specific issues regarding a Rogue product with which a customer is not satisfied will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

The Rogue Ohio Power Bar has all the features most people need to perform the traditional power lifts and is considered to be at the top of its hierarchy.

We’ve been through our share of power bars, but the instant we grabbed onto the Ohio Power Bar, feelings of being able to lift heavier weights ensued. Perhaps this is why this barbell has become somewhat legendary in powerlifting circles in the short time it has been on the scene since its introduction in 2014. This bar will quickly give you an experience of value and a feeling that you will be able to squat more, bench smoother, and train your deadlift stronger.

The Rogue OPB is so well liked, it won a recent bracket we held on Instagram that had over 100,000 entries. Not only is it us that love this bar, but it's generally regarded as the best powerlifting barbell by the home gym community.

The shaft of the Ohio Power Bar is 29MM, which has become the standard when it comes to power bars, and for good reason. For the slow lifts (squats, bench press, deadlift, and overhead press), a slightly thicker bar simply feels better and more secure than slightly thinner bars (except for deadlifts, which is why most deadlift bars are 27MM.) Rogue chose to go with a 29MM diameter shaft for a few reasons, but one of the major reasons is that a thicker shaft, creates a stiffer bar. Whip is great for the Olympic lifts, but is less than desirable for squats. A 29MM shaft will cause much less whip than at heavier weights when compared to a 28MM or 28.5MM barbell (it’s why squat bars are 32MM.) Although a 0.5MM larger diameter seems small, it’s not insignificant.

If you have yet to experience what a volcano knurl feels like, you’re missing out. The reason a volcano knurl is superior (in our opinion, again, the feel of knurling is subjective) to the traditional “peaky mountain” knurling that dominated the industry for so long is because it gives you more contact surface area with the epidermal layering of your hands or with the various fibers on the back of your favorite squat shirt. Essentially, because there are more peaks to grip your hand (four times as many as would be if the tops of the peaks weren’t chopped off) you don’t need as “sharp” of a knurl. This leads to a greater grip and less ripped calluses and blood on the platform. This is why we feel, for a power bar, this is the best type of knurling.

Finally,  the Rogue Ohio Power Bar is our top pick for the best power bar for most people of all the bars we’ve reviewed. We truly feel like this could be the last barbell you will ever buy (plus it’s listed at a very fair and affordable price and their warranty should cover you.) Using a quality barbell is an experience and one that is, in our opinion, the most valuable aspect of your home gym that, hopefully, you may one day be able to pass down to your kids.

Power Bar Runner-Up: Texas Power Bar

Power Bar Runner-Up
Buddy Capps Texas Power Bar
(8 ratings & reviews)
The most popular powerlifting bar on the market, Manufactured by Buddy Capps. Used in National & World Championship Meets since 1980. We are still using the same USA steel mill we started with in 1980. The shafts are center less ground, demagnetized and oiled to the max before shipping to Texas. Once at our production facility, we machine and then knurl each shaft to create a grip that is still the best in the industry. Texas Power Bars have different finishes available including black zinc and chrome plating. The sleeves are are available raw or chrome plated. Big tensile strength numbers sound very impressive and we have them but, the proof is on the platform. Hundreds of state, national, international and world powerlifting records have been and continue to be set and broken on the The Texas Power Bar. Length - 84" Weight - 20kg (45 lb w/ basic collars) Diameter - 28.5 mm Capacity - 1500 lbs Finish - Shaft is black zinc; ends are raw

The Texas Power Bar was one of the first of its kind. Produced by Buddy Capps, the Texas Power Bar quickly became the ruler other companies would use to measure themselves against after years of tried and true service. Up until about the last decade, the Buddy Capps Texas Power Bar would have been the best power barbell for most lifters. When it comes to barbells, times have changed, with new manufacturers and leaders building upon and improving the science behind what make a good barbell designed for powerlifting.

As stated in its name, the Buddy Capps Texas Power Bar is produced in the great state of Texas.  They have been around since 1980, and have quite the history associated with them. In all actuality, it could be reasoned that more world records have been registered using the Buddy Capps Texas Power Bar than any barbell ever fabricated. That’s crazy to think about, but it’s one of the reasons that the TPB is still considered one of the greatest barbells available, despite its construction and steel being more or less the same as it was when it was first introduced.

The knurling quality of the Texas Power Bar is detailed and focused; each little “knurl” will remind you of the Matterhorn. The Texas Power Bar utilizes the “peaky mountain” style of knurling that we would describe as being aggressive and assuring. Many lifters prefer this style of knurling due to this feeling of precise sharpness that just seems to work when held across your back or wrapped tightly with your fingers. Although we prefer the “volcano” style used on the Rogue Ohio Power Bar, you can read more about our comparison between the Rogue OPB and Buddy Capps TPB here, we realize that knurling is a preference, and took the preferences of others into great consideration.

All around, the Buddy Capps Texas Power Bar is a good, trusted barbell with a long backed reputation. While it is not our favorite bar, it is reliable and has stood the test of time as a treasure among powerlifters.

Multi-Purpose Bar Upgrade Pick: Rogue Ohio Bar - Stainless Steel

Upgrade Pick
Rogue Ohio Bar - Stainless Steel
(9 ratings & reviews)
The new stainless steel version of our 20KG Rogue Ohio Bar is machined and assembled in Columbus, Ohio, and features a 200,000 PSI tensile strength shaft, chrome sleeves, and an exclusive Rogue knurl pattern that’s 100% in its original, machined form for an unmatched feel. With quality composite bushings and dual knurl marks, the Stainless Steel Ohio Bar is optimized for both Olympic lifts and Powerlifting—delivering a firm but non-abrasive grip, a consistent spin, and a unique balance of whip and rigidity. We call it the Ohio Bar because we think it represents more than just the Rogue brand. It’s a testament to where we work, who we are, and the pride we feel in making the best American-made weightlifting bars on the market. To check out the same bar with zinc or black oxide finish options, see our standard Ohio Bar page. This high tensile strength steel is manufactured in the USA and has proven to be one of the best steel variants for a multi-purpose barbell. Each barbell shaft is ground and polished prior to machining, allowing for a very smooth finish. Every bar shaft is machined in Columbus, Ohio. A great deal of pride is built into each bar as the knurling process is an art. We spent months working on the knurl we believe to be the best for the Ohio Bar. To test the knurl it is more a beer tasting process than exact measurement. There is a look and feel that go into testing every bar. With no plating, the knurl on the Stainless Steel Ohio Bar is left exactly how we machined it, providing a great feel that cannot be achieved with other finishes. It’s similar to the knurl feel from a bare steel shaft, but with better corrosion resistance. The combination of a stainless steel shaft and chrome sleeves also creates a sharp look with few equals. Please Note: Rogue recommends using a synthetic bristle brush, NOT a steel brush, to clean a stainless steel shaft. Steel on steel can cause rusting over time. The Ohio Bar is assembled with the same black composite bushings as the Rogue Bar 2.0, which act as bearing surfaces between the bar sleeve and bar shaft. This is a very robust way of building a barbell, and can produce a smooth, consistent spin not possible with lesser import bars. Each bar comes with an “Ohio Bar Card” that has the initials of the Rogue team member that built it. The multi-purpose Ohio Bar will have normal “whip” during Olympic weightlifting and enough stiffness to hold for heavy Powerlifting. The steel in this bar is proven as an excellent choice for weightlifters. Specifications: Manufactured in Columbus, OH Diameter: 28.5MM Weight: 20KG Stainless Steel Shaft, Chrome Sleeves Dual Knurl Marks for Oly and Power lifts No Center Knurl 200,000 PSI Tensile Strength Steel Composite Bushings for Reliable Spin 16.40" loadable sleeve length Rogue branded endcaps

While we think most people will best off with our top pick, the Rogue Bar 2.0; if you're interested primarily in corrosion resistance and the feel of the knurling--and willing to pay significantly more for it--we recommend the Rogue Ohio Bar - Stainless Steel. The Rogue Ohio Bar was at one time the flagship barbell for Rogue Fitness. It was made in the USA and featured the best steel and components that Rogue offered at a great price. The Rogue Bar 2.0 has since taken pretty much everything the Ohio Bar has, sans bronze bushings, and is at a lower price.

The Rogue Ohio Bar - Stainless Steel barbell features one of the most coveted steels available--stainless steel. Stainless steel is an excellent choice for barbell steel due to its ability to resist corrosion while offering the feeling of a raw steel bar. It's honestly the best of both worlds, and if you don't mind paying extra, it's worth the extra cost.

The SS Ohio Bar features the same knurling and build quality as the Rogue Bar 2.0 along with the industries best warranty. Although the knurling is technically the same as the standard Ohio Bar and Rogue Bar 2.0, it will feel more aggressive due to their being no coating applied after the knurl is cut. If you've never used a raw steel bar, you're in for a treat. It's truly the best a barbell will feel, although you have to determine if the increased cost is worth it for a better feel and corrosion resistance.

Power Bar Upgrade Pick: Kabuki Strength New Gen Power Bar

Power Bar Upgrade Pick
Kabuki Strength New Generation Power Bar
(7 ratings & reviews)
This bar is our IPF spec, multi purpose, power bar. It I a 29mm bar, with aggressive but not overly sharp knurl, and standard powerlifting markings.  What is it about our new generation bars that sets them apart? With a tensile strength of over 250k PSI and a rockwell hardness of 51 RC, this bar is harder than any other currently bar on market. What this means in practical terms is that the knurl won’t wear down over the years, leaving you with a bar that is performing sub par compared to when it was new. Even where the bar contacts the rack it will maintain that fine, tacky, aggressive knurl just like the day it was unboxed.  The knurl itself is the other piece of engineering that went into this bar this bar that we are proud of. We wanted to create something that grabbed well but wasn’t so unnecessarily sharp that it cut your hands rather than grabbing. The knurl of our bar is finer than most barbells you will find, giving the knurl more points per square inch and creating more surface area  to create friction against.  Lastly, another small feature to differentiate our bar is the center marks in the knurl. We wanted to leave the power bar with a continuous center knurl so as to not lose any of the grip effects for squatting, but still have marking to indicate the bars center for alignment purposes. We fully stand behind our product and believe in it wholeheartedly, which is why each bar comes with a 5 year warranty against any type of manufacturing defect. What this means is if your bar begins to wear prematurely, we will repair or replace it free of charge.  While our bar does have a higher tensile strength – what this doesn’t mean is that we will warranty against customer induced damage such as dropping the bar into metal safety pins. Depending on many variables such as the height and weight used this is just simply too much force into one area of the bar to not cause permanent deformation.

The Kabuki Strength New Generation Power Bar is certainly one of the best power bars we’ve ever tested. Put simply, it’s one of the highest quality bars on the market at any price point. The knurling. The steel. The feel. If you want one of the best bars that money can buy, this is near the top of the list.

To understand why the Kabuki Strength New Generation Power Bar was produced, you need to understand more about the man, co-founder of Kabuki Strength, Chris Duffin. Duffin is an accomplished powerlifter, loves the strength world, but what’s really important to note is that he has a distinguished engineering background. This makes many of the products coming out of the Kabuki Strength lab unique in that you can tell they are focusing and researching how to make the best products within the given category. In fact, some of our favorite products are Kabuki Strength manufactured, that being the Kabuki Strength Duffalo Bar (one of our favorite specialty bars) and the Kabuki Strength ShouldeRök.

In terms of feel, it’s been hard to pick which bar is the “best.” Again, this is very much a preferential argument, and we’ve gone back and forth between the Kabuki NGPB and the Rogue OPB. Suffice it to say, when it comes to knurl, you can’t go wrong with either one.

The Kabuki Strength Next Generation Power Bar measures in with a diameter of 29mm, with an overall length of 86.5”. We are pleased with the 29mm diameter as this seems to be a favorite among lifters when squatting and pressing (overhead or on a bench). The sleeves utilize self-lubricating bronze bushings which provide a reasonable spin that in not excessive and has become the standard for power bars as of late (we generally prefer them to composite bushings for longevity purposes.)

The Kabuki Strength New Generation Power Bar certainly is one of the most detailed, well thought out barbells on the market today. Currently, Kabuki Strength offers a 5-year warranty. When a company offers less than a 5-year warranty, it feels like they aren’t fully confident in their product. At the price, the Kabuki Strength New Generation Power Bar is currently listed at, we would hope that one day they could reason as to offering a lifetime warranty as Kabuki itself continues growing as a company. 5 years for this price of a barbell does seem a bit low.

Multi-Purpose Bar Budget Pick: FringeSport Wonder Bar

Runner-Up
FringeSport Wonder Bar V2 20KG Barbell
(10 ratings & reviews)
The Wonder Bar reigns as the nucleus of the barbell universe here at Fringe. We set out on a noble quest to design and build the best bar suited for commercial gyms, and make it available to you at a home gym price. We completed our hero’s journey and now offering our reward to you delights us. This versatile bar will serve almost everyone well. You can set world records on this bar, and use it for most training. If you're a seasoned athlete or an affiliate owner, consider stepping up to the Bomba Bar V2 (made in America) or even our Fringe Sport Weightlifting Barbell. Here are a couple of Wonder Bar features to be aware of:The 28mm shaft diameter is great for Olympic movements.The needle bearing cartridges provide great spin, but may require oiling in time.If you’re new to lifting or building a home gym and need more info to learn what type of barbell works best for you, here’s a helpful guide.We have an informal state motto here in Texas- “come and take it.” Not only do we want you to do this with the Wonder Bar V2, but we’d like to put our own spin on it. Fringe it, or forget it. WONDER BAR V2 SPECS:The Wonder Bar V2 comes in a bushing version or bearing cartridges version. Except for that, the specs for both are the same.Bushing rotation or bearing collarKiller all-black Zinc finishTensile strength: 205,000 PSIYield strength: 160,000 PSIWeight capacity: 1,600 lbWeight: 20kilograms / ~44 poundsCollars: Bushing (Yellow "W") Bronze Oil Lite Bushing Rotation or Bearing (Green "W") 4 Needle Bearing Cartridges Per CollarWhip: StiffSpin: Moderate (Bushing) or Fast (Bearing)Best Use: Garage Gym or WODing. Read below for Bushing vs. Bearing differences.Material: Alloy Steel, Black ZincPlatedLength: 86 inchesSleeve Specs:16 inches Length and 2" diameterShaft Specs: true28mm diameterKnurl: Dual Knurling - Double Ring IWF + IPF Knurling (No Center Knurl)Smooth knurl depth- neither a cheese grater nor too softWarranty: Lifetime Warranty against manufacturer's defects.

If you want something more affordable and don't mind black zinc sleeves, we also like the FringeSport Wonder Bar. Unlike our top pick, the Wonder Bar comes with black zinc coated sleeves, a slightly smaller 28mm shaft listed at 205,000 PSI tensile strength, and bronze bushings. The Wonder Bar also features one of the most well done end caps out of any barbell we tested (this isn't a very high bar considering nearly most companies at this price point use stickers.) Overall, the Wonder Bar is a well-constructed bar from a company with a reputation for making good equipment at great prices.

Despite the low price and great features, the Wonder Bar from FringeSport does not beat the Rogue Bar 2.0 overall.

One of the standout features of the Wonder Bar is the tensile strength which is listed at 205,000 PSI. The fact that you can purchase a barbell for $200 with a tensile strength over 200,000 PSI reflects the current state of the barbell industry: an arms race to have the cheapest bar with the highest tensile strength. Let me remind you that a higher tensile strength does not equate to a "better" barbell. Although a bar with higher tensile strength will often be stronger, it's also often stiffer.

The Wonder Bar is rated as being "stiff" while the Rogue 2.0 is said to have a "good whip." This isn't definitive and most people will never experience whip that is advantageous due to not being strong enough, but based upon the PSI of the bars and the companies ratings, the Rogue likely a has better whip. No matter what, neither I nor anyone else has really been able to quantify whip, and until that time, perceived whip shouldn't play a huge factor in deciding what barbell to purchase.

One feature of the Wonder Bar that is a drawback compared to the Rogue 2.0 Bar is the black zinc coating on the sleeves. Although black zinc is a fine coating for the shaft of a bar, the sleeves experience much more abuse, and after only a few sessions you'll start to notice ugly marks on the sleeves.

One other reason we listed the Wonder Bar from FringeSport as a runner-up is due to the shaft diameter of 28mm. This is the standard shaft diameter for barbells used in Olympic Weightlifting, but for general training we believe this is too thin for most people. If you have small hands, you may like the 28mm shaft, but 28.5 seems to feel better for most applications outside of the classic lifts.

Multi-Purpose Bar Competition

Rogue Ohio Bar - Cerakote: Cerakote is an incredible coating for barbells. Not only does it look awesome thanks to the vibrant colors that can be applied, but it's very durable and resistant to oxidation that occurs so often in a garage gym. Despite this, although we have many bars coated in Cerakote, for most people, it's not necessary. If you like the colors and want the extra protection against rust, then by all means we recommend them, but most people are looking for the best bang for the buck, and these don't meet that standard as well as our other recommendations.

American Barbell Training Bar: This all-purpose barbell is a great performer. Although our first impressions of the bar were outstanding, it hasn't faired as well over time. The bar has developed surface rust and despite the bar employing composite bushings is one of the slowest spinning barbells we tested (our hypothesis is that too much grease is packed in the sleeve.) We're big fans of American Barbell, their innovation, and attention to detail, but the Training Bar and California Bar are too expensive for the features offered to make our top picks when compared. That said, we're always excited to see what they come out with next and be looking out for their power bar to make the top

Vulcan Strength Standard Bushing Barbell: Vulcan is producing some outstanding equipment, but the bar that we tested features a bright zinc finish that hasn't fared too well against the elements. It spins decently and isn't overpriced, but its lack of corrosion resistance kept it from being in our top picks.

FringeSport Hybrid Barbell: We're actually big fans of this bar. It's very similar to the Chan Bar from Rogue, although it's imported. For the price though, we prefer the Rogue Bar 2.0 and FringeSports more budget-friendly Wonder Bar.

FringeSport Bomba Barbell: Although FringeSport's lower-priced barbell made it into our top picks, the Bomba Barbell has similar features but with a higher price tag. It's a great bar, just not worth the extra cost in our opinion.

FringeSport Wonder Bar Stainless Steel Barbell: A stainless barbell for $300 is pretty impressive, however, we prefer the specs and knurling on the Rogue Ohio Bar SS.

FringeSport CeraColt Cerakote Olympic Barbell: A great bar at a great price, but still more expensive than our other picks.

Rogue Ohio Bar: The standard Ohio Bar is a great barbell, but not worth the extra cost over the Rogue Bar 2.0.

Rogue B&R Bar 2.0: The B&R 2.0 Bar from Rogue Fitness came very close to being in our top picks, but due to the slightly thicker shaft, cost, and more of a powerlifting focus it did not make it. That said, if you don't really desire whip, enjoy a thicker barbell, and don't mind providing extra maintenance to a raw steel bar, then the B&R 2.0 is a great choice.

Rogue Chan Bar: The Chan Bar by Rogue Fitness was another bar that barely made it off our top picks list. Featuring some innovative ideas like a light center knurl and an increased distance between the outer knurling, the Chan Bar is pretty unique. Unfortunately, Rogue no longer offers the bar in different finishes and charges extra for nothing that really costs them extra; the Chan Bar will have to remain an honorable mention (we still love you, Matt!)

Rogue Ohio Power Bar: The Rogue Ohio Bar is an outstanding barbell, especially if you focus on the big 3 (squat, deadlift, bench) but due to this guide being for the majority of people, the Ohio Power Bar will remain an honorable mention. However, it was chosen as our Top Pick for the Best Powerlifting Barbell that you can find here.

Further reading

The Best Bumper Plates for 2020 Cover Image

The Best Bumper Plates for 2020

After researching over 70 bumper plates, using 32 of them, we've determined that the best bumper plates for most people are the FringeSport Bumper Plates. The best competition bumper plates for most people are the Rogue Black Training Bumper Plates. Taking into consideration rubber used, durability, noise, appearance, price, warranty, and availability, these bumper plates will work well for any home gym, commercial gym, or CrossFit Affiliate. Read More

The Best Powerlifting Barbell for 2020 Cover Image

The Best Powerlifting Barbell for 2020

After researching over 50 power bars and legitimately testing 11 of them, we've determined that the Rogue Ohio Power Bar is the best power bar for most people. Considering price, tensile strength, warranty, performance, knurling, availability, general consensus, and durability, the Rogue Ohio Power Bar offers the best quality for the price of any powerlifting barbell currently on the market. Read More

The Best Budget Home Gym Equipment for 2020 Cover Image

The Best Budget Home Gym Equipment for 2020

Just about everyone loves the idea of walking out of your garage door or into your basement or even into a bedroom and having a place where you can hone your physical and mental abilities. Unfortunately, many people have the idea that a home gym or garage gym has to be expensive; we’re here to crush that notion. Here is the best home gym equipment for those on a budget so you can start training at home on your time without breaking the bank. Read More

The Best CrossFit Equipment for a Home Gym in 2020 Cover Image

The Best CrossFit Equipment for a Home Gym in 2020

CrossFit requires constantly varied movements performed at a high-intensity. Therefore, a home gym designed for CrossFit will require varied pieces of equipment made of high-quality (due to the intensity and work required.) These are the pieces of equipment and our suggestions for each to build the ultimate CrossFit home gym. Read More