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For most people, the best squat rack type we suggest is the power rack thanks to its availability, versatility, and most importantly, it's inherent safety features. The power rack we suggest for most people is the Rep Fitness PR-4000 Power Rack. The PR-4000 combines excellent features, unlimited expandability, great quality, lots of customizability, and best of all, a great value. It looks and performs nearly as well as any rack on the market at a price that years ago would seem unfathomable.
Although there are many power racks available, if we had to choose one for most people that meets various budgets and desires, this is what we would suggest.
If you want something similar with a bit better quality and is made in the USA at a slightly higher price point, we suggest the Rogue RML-490C Power Rack.
The Rogue HR-2 Half Rack takes our favorite squat stand, the SML-2, and adds two additional uprights along with storage pins for plates to create our top pick for the best half rack. Although we'd suggest most people go with a power rack over a half rack due to the great safety afforded by a power rack, a half rack feels awesome to train in due to its open nature. Add in some spotter arms and you'll be able to perform a majority of lifts you would be able to in a full power rack rather safely.
The Rogue HR-2 Half Rack is one of Rogue's best-reviewed squat racks, and we agree with the users. It's a great rack that can fit anywhere, doesn't have to be bolted down, is still very stable, and a majority of the abilities of a more expensive and bulkier rack like the ever-popular Rogue R-3 Power Rack. If you don't have the room for a power rack, don't want to bolt down your rack, or simply prefer a half rack, then the HR-2 from Rogue Fitness is what we suggest for most people.
If you want something more expensive with a bit more features, then our Runner Up, the Rep HR-5000 Half Rack is worth taking a look at.
The Rogue SML-2 Squat Stand is the first squat rack we ever reviewed and despite being over five years old, it still performs like new. Rogue has taken the extremely popular and reliable design of the SML-2 and added color options for those that like more flash than matte black in the Rogue SML-2C.
A squat stand is a great option for home gyms with limited space and owners with limited budgets. We've loaded upwards of 700 LB on the SML-2 without any issues and if weighed down, the SML-2 can be absolutely great for kipping pull-ups (we used it to compete in the CrossFit Open multiple years, including helping a male competitor get to Regionals.) The SML-2C features the same attention to detail, warranty, and quality as all Rogue products do and although it's a bit more expensive than some of the other competitors, with Rogue, you know what to expect.
The PRx Performance Profile Rack is the most unique squat rack on our recommendations list, and likely one of the most well-liked. After reviewing the PRO version of the Profile Rack in-depth, we've been in love with the design ever since. It's the most convenient and easy to use fold away squat rack we've tested, and if you have the money, we definitely recommend it over some of the cheaper, swing style racks.
After being on Shark Tank (and getting an offer) PRx Performance has taken off and created a myriad of other pieces of equipment, although the Profile Rack is by far our favorite. Featuring an easy-to-use fold-up design that is made possible by hydraulics, you'll have no issue parking in the garage and still having a full-fledged garage gym. We suggest the Profile version for most due to the lower price point, although the Pro Version with 3"x3" steel and laser-cut hole numbers is a joy to have if you have the money in your budget.
If the Profile Rack is a bit out of your price range, we suggest taking a look at the Rogue RML-3WC Fold Back Wall Mount Rack.
As previously stated, the power rack, also known as the power cage is our most often recommended squat rack. It's the safest, has the most versatility, and there are more options in this category than any other. With this said, if you're going to purchase a squat rack, there are an insane amount of racks available for purchase today. Here are our recommendations for the best power rack.
The Rep PR-4000 Power Rack is the best overall squat rack for most people on the market when you take into account features, quality, price, and safety. It looks and performs just like the higher-end models at a value that is palatable for most. In fact, if you purchase the PR-4000 for your garage gym, it will very likely be the last squat rack you ever buy.
The PR-4000 is made with 3” x 3” 11-gauge steel with 1” Westside Hole Spacing through the weight bench zone and is rated at a 1,000-pound capacity. These numbers are standard for this price of rack. One of the things we really like about the PR-4000 is the ability to customize just about every part of it. With multiple color, height, and depth options you can make this PR-4000 fit your space and training style exactly and not have to overspend for things you don’t want or won’t use.
Rep stole from Sorinex playbook and are offering a clear grind option for a $150 upcharge. This is the option we chose for the Sorinex BaseCamp that currently sits in Garage Gym Built HQ and is without a doubt our favorite offering (along with most other people.) It looks good and also hides imperfections really well due to the lack of uniformity in the grind.
On top of the incredible quality of the rack, there is an ever-increasing accessory list that will make it expandable in the future with other gym equipment. You can add free weights storage, a pullup bar, safeties, and multiple j cups at the time of purchase to add some versatility to your machine. On top of those accessories, you can add stabilizing and safety accessories such as the spotter arm, rear base stabilizer, and front foot extensions. When these are added, even more accessories can be piled on like lat/low row attachment and later in the year monolift arms and jammer arms.
Almost any accessory you can think of either is or will be available with this power cage. The Rep PR-4000 has been making a lot of noise in the community, and for good reason—it’s a tremendous value.
Upgrade Pick: Rogue Monster Series Power Racks
If money isn’t a consideration in your purchasing decision, then the Rogue Monster Series, and particularly, the Rogue RM-6 Monster Power Rack 2.0 is the piece of equipment for you. Just looking at the picture makes you want to go out and purchase the rack right away, and taking a deeper look into the features available makes it even better. Rogue has thought of everything with this rack, all the way down to the accessories that perfectly match the keyholes on the side.
The only major downside of the RM-6 is the $2,000+ price tag. Coming in at a much higher price than our Top Pick, the Monster series is really designed for those who want the best of the best and don’t mind spending the money or taking up the space.
The RM-6 is the most durable and highest quality power rack in the Rogue stable of racks. With a footprint of 80” x 53”, as opposed to the starting dimensions 47” x 30” of the Rep PR-4000, this rack is a beast and offers an incredible amount of lifting space on the inside. It uses a similar 3” x 3” 11-gauge solid steel frame found in the PR-4000, although Rogue’s is US-sourced while Reps is imported. In addition, the RM-6 utilizes massive 1-inch diameter bolts which make for a very solid frame, but also just looks extremely cool.
Being Rogue’s premier offering, the RM-6 is completely customizable and has as many accessories and additions as you could imagine including a choice of multiple j-cup types. It can do everything that other power racks can do, but with a few extra accessories and increased quality of construction.
As far as safety is concerned, there are few racks that can take as much weight as the Monster Series from Rogue. You can choose between three different safeties including the monster pin and pipe set, the monster strap safety system, and the 43” flip-down safety system. While they are all very effective, it comes down to personal preference and knowing that the product that you choose will keep you safe during lifts.
As mentioned above, the biggest downside is the price. The quality, safety features, versatility, size, and available attachments are some of the best on the market, and if you can afford it then this is the fitness power rack you should buy.
If you like the Monster Series, but don’t have the space for the size that the RM-6 occupies, then we suggest Rogue’s RM-4 Monster Rack.
Another Upgrade Option: Sorinex XL Series Power Rack
Another upgrade from the Rep PR-4000 is the Sorinex XL Series Rack. Similar in quality and size to the Rogue RM-6, the Sorinex XL adds some customization options but still at a price tag around $2,000.
If you have been around the weightlifting equipment game for any period of time then you know the Sorinex brand. Sorinex has supplied the Navy Seals, Denver Broncos, Oregon Ducks, and Los Angeles Lakers among others and has become the premier name in high-end weightlifting equipment. The bottom line is that if you are looking for a bargain, look somewhere else, but if you are looking for a top of the line power rack, you have found it in the Sorinex XL.
One of the best feelings in the world is when you assemble your power rack and place it in the center of your garage gym. It exudes quality and fills you with pride in your home gym even before lifting your first weight. And even better than that, it performs as well as it looks.
The standard dimensions of the Sorinex XL are 47” wide, 94.5” tall, and 71” deep. While these dimensions are fully customizable, they also work for most garage gym needs. It’s not too tall to fit under the ceiling (see our review of the Sorinex BaseCamp for that), and the width and depth give it the perfect footprint for not taking over the room but still providing adequate lifting space.
As far as accessories and attachments go, Sorinex is right in line with the Rogue RM-6 and slightly better than the Rep PR-4000. With cable systems, lat pull attachment, chin-up bars, bar supports, and anything else you can think of for a squat cage, Sorinex offers you the ability to do almost any exercise you want.
Sorinex is a smaller company than the ones previously mentioned, and that can have both its negatives and positives. The first negative is that shipping is often more expensive and takes longer than large companies like Rogue. It’s a simple matter of bulk shipping and discounts and increased capacity for a larger manufacturer. On the flip side of that, Sorinex has incredible customer service and long year-warranty followup. It is the same principle that applies to retail stores like Walmart compared with family-owned businesses. You may get a better price and have more options, but you will never get the customer interaction and service that is found in companies like Sorinex.
The same negative found in the Rogue RM-6 is found with the Sorinex XL...price. The PR-4000 is a game-changer because it offers many of the same features at a fraction of the price, but that price has to be made up somewhere. In the case of the Sorinex XL, the quality of construction and versatility of the machine make it worth every cent...if you can afford it. Companies like Cap Barbell can't compare to this level of quality.
Budget Pick: ForceUSA MyRack Modular Power Rack
The Force USA MyRack is not only one of the most customizable power racks on the market, but it's also one of the most feature-filled for those on a budget, but who still want a safe rack. We tested the MyRack in depth over a year ago, and since then have had it in one of our testers garage gyms being used nearly every day. Despite the abuse that's been placed on the rack and it's many accessories (we tested all of them) it still performs like it did on day one.
When looking for a budget power rack, there are many options available. However, what you'll find is that most have a low weight capacity, use too thin of steel, lack accessory options, and are frankly, a bit unsafe to use.
The MyRack excels in that it combines many budget-friendly features like thinner steel and painted on hole numbers with higher-end accessories. This provides a rack that should not only last, but be enjoyable for even the strongest who train at their home. And, most importantly, you should feel safe while using it.
One thing that is quickly noticeable about Force USA is that they've focused on the ease of buying equipment. Too often, equipment companies focus so much on the product that they forget about the actualy buying experience that a customer has to go through in order to get it to their door. People want to see what they're purchasing and they want to easily add it to their cart without having to calculate shipping and figure out how to navigate the site. Although this has nothing to do with the equipment, I feel it was done well enough that it needs to be mentioned.
Moving on, the MyRack is not the best rack available. I don't think there's many that would argue against that, the team at Force USA included. But, I don't believe Force USA was trying to create the "World's Best Rack" when conceiving the MyRack concept.
From my standpoint, the goal of the MyRack was to make it easy and affordable for people to purchase a good, not great rack, with a great selection of accessories. Seriously, there aren't many racks on the planet that can compete with the number of accessories the MyRack has and for the price, the rack excels.
In use, the MyRack is sturdier than expected. Thanks to the lower and upper braces, the MyRack has sways very little side to side when racking and re-racking weight. Although it would definitely benefit from being bolted to the floor (as all racks would) it isn't completely necessary, and you can purchase optional plate holders for rather cheap to weigh it down.
Overall, the Force USA MyRack is a great rack. It's priced extremely well and offers a ton of accessories, but there are some areas we could see for improvement.
Another Budget Option: Titan X-3 Flat Foot Power Rack
A great power rack for a smaller budget is the Titan X-3 Flat Foot Power Rack. The Titan X-3 is rated at 1,500 pounds with 3” x 3” 11-gauge steel uprights just like the more expensive models mentioned above. Because of its flat feet, the X-3 doesn’t need to be bolted to the floor and remains sturdy and unshakeable even when holding heavyweights. With a 49” x 48” footprint, the X-3 is a perfect size for tighter fits and it even comes in a “short” or “tall” model depending on the height of your ceilings. Even if you have a larger space or move into one, there are 10” and 24” extension kits to add more uprights for additional lifting or plate storage places.
As far as accessories go, the Titan X-3 has similar options as the more expensive Rogue Racks and its hole size make it open to adding accessories from other brands as well. The X-3 also uses Westside Hole Spacing through the bench and 2-inch spacing everywhere else which is something we love using to dial in the height of the j-cups and safety catches. The safety rods and j-cups that are available are decent quality (we haven’t seen many break recently, although we did early on) and there are band pegs available if you are planning to use accommodating resistance via bands while lifting.
If this review were written prior to the Rep PR-4000 hitting the market, there is a good chance that the Titan X-3 would be closer to the top of our list, mainly due to its value proposition. The biggest negative of the X-3 is that it is manufactured in China rather than in America and that can bring quality issues into question. But with the Rogue and Sorinex being clear upgrades in both quality and price, the X-3 had the niche of being the highest quality for less than $1,000. With the Rep PR-4000 that is no longer the case, and the prices of the two machines are so similar that it is difficult to find a reason to purchase the X-3 if the PR-4000 is available.
Ultra Budget Pick: Rep Fitness PR-1100 Power Rack
Rep Fitness has another power rack in addition to the others we’ve listed if the price is one of the main considerations for your purchase. Coming in at less than $250 before shipping, this is a true budget pick but a high-quality budget pick that makes it worth a look. The Rep PR-1100 Power Rack has a 48” x 47” footprint and is made from 2” x 3” 14-gauge steel with a 1,000-pound rating. The hole spacing is a respectable 3 inches throughout and the holes are numbered for easy loading and unloading. These are great specs for the price and show that the rack can handle the needs of the vast majority of weightlifters out there.
As impressive as the quality of the rack is for the price, the number and types of accessories that are available for purchase are another great quality of the rack. There’s a pullup bar, dip bars, j-cups, safety pins, a lat/row, landmines, weight horns, and more available to expand the racks capabilities as you go. The safety and quality of the PR-1100 are great and the accessories offered make it a steal at less than $250.
Despite us liking the rack, there are certainly some downsides to the Rep PR-1100. 3-inch hole spacing rather than 2-inch spacing, 14-gauge rather than the industry-standard 11-gauge steel, and fewer customization options are all negatives that will be noticed. We often recommend the PR-1100 for those with a low budget as it features a lot of things people look for, but at a much lower price.
Just be aware that you will likely want to upgrade the rack eventually. It’s a nice starter rack, but as you’ll find, having less stability and upgrade options for the rack will limit you.
Cheapest Pick: Titan T-2 Power Rack
The Titan T-2 Power Rack is somewhat similar to the Rep PR-1100 without some of the bells and whistles found in Rep’s budget offering. While the steel used for the uprights is only 2” x 2” the 9-gauge steel is thicker than any of the other racks mentioned here and give the T-2 a 3,000-pound weight rating (much more than anyone needs.) While this is two to three times more than even the Sorinex and Rogue power racks, it is a little bit of overkill. There are very, very few people in the world who are going to need more than a 1,000-pound rating. However, the rating provided by the welds and steel thickness speak to the quality of the T-2.
The biggest downside of the T-2 is its lack of customization possibilities. This includes few accessories offered and no 24” extension available like can be found with other Titan options. The price point is great as it comes in at less than $300 for a really nice looking and high-quality power rack, but the features are lacking.
At a price point higher than the Rep PR-1100, the Titan is a difficult sell. There are some definite positives, not the least of which is the incredible 3,000-pound rating and clear quality of craftsmanship in the rack. But the key in researching weightlifting equipment is to wade through the things that manufacturers want you to believe about their gear and get to the features that really mean something to you, the lifter. Will you ever need to rack 3,000 pounds on a weight bar? Probably not. But you will be glad to have numerous options and customization features with a rack that can accommodate the weight of about 99.9% of lifters in the world.
Despite the Half Rack being less safe than a full power rack, it's still extremely popular due to it's open nature, lower price, less space taken up, and its still high level of safety. We've used and tested many different half racks at all different price points and have summarized our recommendations here.
Top Pick: Rogue HR-2 Half Rack
Rogue only has two half racks in their arsenal, and the Rogue HR-2 Half Rack despite not being the best half rack they make, is the best value. It doesn’t hurt that it comes in at about half of the price of the upgrade picks in our half rack section. If you have the Monster Lite Series Squat Stand, you only need a $250 conversion kit to turn it into the HR-2 which is a great option that will add plate storage and greatly increase the stability of the rack.
The first difference you will notice is that the upright steel is a little less robust at 2” x 3” 11-gauge rather than the 3” x 3” you see in the previous offerings but the base of the machine has 3” x 3”. Other than that, the quality in this rack matches any other half rack on the market and is highly customizable and versatile. It is considered “Monster Lite” so while most of the Monster Lite accessories can be used, it will not have the same number of options as the HR-5000 or the Monster Collegiate.
The height of the HR-2 is customizable, it boasts westside hole spacing throughout, and the rack’s footprint is 49” x 48”. As far as the quality and options for the price, you cannot beat the Rogue HR-2. The professional quality and look Rogue is known for is just as present in this rack as their others. If you’re wanting to spend less than $1,000, but still want a high-quality half rack, then this is the one we recommend.
Runner-Up: Rep HR-5000 Half Rack
The runner up to the Rogue HR-2 is the Rep HR-5000 Half Rack from Rep Fitness. The HR-5000 starts out at just over $1,100 for the single station but it comes with spotter arms, upgraded j-cups, and a multi-grip knurled pull-up bar which makes it a slightly less expensive option than the Rogue Monster Collegiate Half Rack. With similar color choices, steel quality, and even a similar “professional look” to the Rogue Monster the Rep HR-5000 is a great choice and a very good half rack that will make you want to even use it for dumbbell movements (although not sure how it will help that.)
With more options and accessories included in the price, an equal number of additional accessories, and a professional quality and look you may wonder why the Rep HR-5000 is the runner up rather than the top pick. Maybe the biggest difference is the Rogue brand including customer service, American manufacturing, and history of quality products. If you are looking for a great machine at a slightly lower price, the Rep HR-5000 is for you, but if you want top-of-the-line quality, customization, and accessories at a slightly higher price, the Monster Collegiate is still the best rack on the market.
The components of the HR-5000 Half Rack look and feel incredibly stout, which is one of the first things we noticed when we were taking it out of the box and organizing the pieces in the garage to build. Building it was very straight forward and we were easily able to build it just by looking at the overall picture displayed on the cardboard box (I’ve also put together quite a few racks over the years, so that may have helped.)
Rep has upped their manufacturing game by using robotic welders now and it’s noticed immediately. The fit and finish is some of the best we’ve seen on an imported rack which makes it easier to stomach a Chinese rack at such a high price.
Honestly, we had a difficult time deciding to go with the Rep HR-5000 or the Rogue Monster Collegiate as our Runner-Up, so you’ll be well off choosing either one.
Upgrade Pick: Rogue Monster Collegiate Half Rack
The Rogue Monster Collegiate Half Rack is the Cadillac of half squat racks. If you can spend $1,100 (or more depending on options and accessories) and are planning to use your half rack on a consistent basis then you should stop shopping and researching right now and purchase this rack. Made with 3” x 3” 11-gauge steel and powder coated black finish the quality is top-notch and allows a rating of 1,500 pounds. It can be purchased as a double or single station half rack and comes with a pull-up bar that can be upgraded at purchase, 4 Monster band pegs, 8 Monster plate storage pins, and 2 standard Monster j-cups that can also be upgraded to sandwich cups. The Monster spotter arms are available for separate purchase and I highly recommend you adding them to the rack for safety when lifting alone (I’m tired of seeing people get hurt due to a lack of precaution.)
This offering from Rogue can be used with almost any of the Rogue Monster accessories making this the most versatile and customizable half rack on the market by far. Most people who purchase a half rack over a power rack do so because of space considerations. The Rogue Monster, with a footprint of 62” x 53” is the perfect size for most garage gyms and makes great use of its space with the plate storage pins and 30” front feet for stability and band work not to mention the fact that it doesn’t have to be bolted down so it can be moved when needed.. It can be an even better space saver if you are purchasing for multiple users and need the double rack. While it doesn’t include Westside Hole Spacing (no racks with this large of hole spacing have it), the versatility of every other aspect of the rack keeps it no. 1.
Anyone who’s purchased a Rogue product in the past understands the quality and peace of mind offered by the company. In general, a half rack is built smaller and oftentimes without the same quality as that company’s full power racks, but this offering from Rogue is different. The Monster Collegiate Half Rack has the same quality and many of the same available accessories as any power rack on the market and that is why this it stole our top spot. Granted, we don’t think most people should purchase a rack this expensive, as it’s simply more than what most need, however, if you have the money, you won’t regret walking into your garage and seeing this rack staring back at you.
Budget Pick: Titan X-3 Half Rack
Titan has found its niche making “Rogue-Esque” products and specs overseas where manufacturing costs remain very low. The Titan X-3 Half Rack continues this trend and is very similar to the Rouge HR-2 and costs about $100 less. Doing a review on the X-3 would be very similar to reviewing the HR-2 as the footprint, steel quality, hole spacing, color options, accessories available, and even 1,000-pound capacity is identical in both machines.
The main difference, again, is the brand choices. The Titan brand is more known for its bargain pricing than its quality and customer service. In the end, you are paying about $100 for Rogue quality and name, and in this reviewers opinion, that peace of mind and quality is often worth it.
Scanning reviews of the X-3 Half Rack, we see a common thread: people overall like the rack, but have had issues with the quality. Take this one for instance:
“I have a problem with one of my j-hooks but Titan send me another one really fast .. we have a rogue fitness rack and this is very similar to the quality and way cheaper.”
We see this often and if you’re willing to be patient, Titan will get you what you ordered...eventually.
A half rack is a great, compact squat rack that doesn’t leave much to be desired, and the X-3 Half Rack from Titan gets the job done at a good value.
Although squat stands have been around a while, in recent years they've begun getting quite popular thanks to their increase in stability and addition of a pull-up bar. There are many squat stands available, but we've found this particular product category to be fraught with ultra-cheap products that are unsafe and not enjoyable to use. The following squat stands are the ones we recommend.
Top Pick: Rogue SML-2 Squat Stand
The Rogue SML-2 Squat Stand is the best value and the best quality squat stand on the market. Period. More than five years after purchasing, and using it since day 1, the Rogue SML-2 still looks and feels brand new. In fact, it was the first squat rack I ever had and one of the first reviews we ever published. Many equipment reviews, out of necessity, can only speak to features and initial quality, but this review comes from long term experience. This is a top-notch squat stand.
If you are looking for a stand with great accessories, high-quality manufacturing, and that takes up a small amount of space then the SML-2 is perfect for you. Starting out at under $500, this is a great budget alternative to the power racks and half racks that seem to be dominating the market and can be used for CrossFit movements like kipping pull-ups rather easily if you weigh down the bottom frame. On top of that add the Rogue name, quality, warranty, and customer service and you can plainly see why this is our top pick.
The SML-2 is made from 3” x 3” 11-gauge steel which means it is top of the line type of quality when it comes to squat stands. It is equipped for numerous exercises including squats (of course), bench press, pullups, and more and with a 49” x 48” footprint it can fit virtually anywhere. The “Monster Lite” accessories produced by Rogue are almost universally accepted by the SML-2 making it quite versatile and the different height levels and portability make it one of the most customizable squat stands out there. On top of that, you will find westside hole spacing through the bench area and 2-inch spacing everywhere else making it easy to choose the correct level for your lift.
Runner-Up: Titan X-3 Squat Stand
The Titan X-3 Squat Stand compares to the Rogue SML-2 very much like the Titan X-3 half rack compared to the Rogue HR-2. In fact, if you took the review of the SML-2 and copied and pasted it here minus the weld quality, warranty, customer service, and domestically made aspects of the review it would work just fine for the Titan X-3. That’s how much Titan mimics Rogue and for some that is a good thing due to the lower price, for others it angers them.
From the thickness of the upright steel to the accessories to the hole spacing and everything in between these machines are similar. Even the price is, at first glance, similar until you realize that spotter arms and upgraded accessories come in at the $450 price tag with the Titan. The Rogue SML-2, on the other hand, will have to be upgraded, either at, or after purchase making it a considerably more expensive option.
It must be understood, though, that you may deal with issues in getting the rack from their warehouse to your door. If you’re patient, however, the lower price is often worth it for most people.
We went through the reviews on Titan’s site, and although Titan screens their reviews (meaning they remove the negative ones...a reason we allow you to review products on our site) this is what one reviewer had to say in comparing the X-3 from Titan to the Monster Lite Series from Rogue:
“(Rogue) Monster Lite does have prettier paint, prettier welds, right/left configured J hooks, and it's made in the USA. X3 paint is good enough (paint on either is going to suffer through the use of the rack), welds are professional-looking.”
Essentially, if you notice details, you’re going to want to stay away from Titan, generally. However, if you just want something that works, the price is hard to say no too.
The bottom line is that if you have the money, you go with Rogue or Sorinex or someone similar. If you are more budget-conscious and don’t mind the lack of a warranty and after the sale support, then the Titan X-3 is a great choice.
The FringeSport Garage Series Squat Rack is a cheaper, more basic squat stand than our other picks, but it works. Coming in at about $250 and with considerably cheaper accessories, this is the perfect stand for the budget-minded trainee. Add to that the free shipping that is consistently offered at FringeSport and you have a great bargain (especially considering FringeSports customer service. Shoot them an email after you order and tell them Coop sent you and they’ll likely throw in a free banner.)
Now that you have heard about the terrific price, you are probably wondering about safety and quality. The FringeSport is made with 2” x 3” 12-gauge steel which, though lower quality than the previously mentioned stands, is more than enough strength for virtually any garage gym (if you’re a powerlifter, I wouldn’t suggest a squat stand anyways.) It comes with a pullup bar and dip horns and spotter arms can be bought separately (we suggest both and if you’re going to bench, please do not do so without spotter arms.) Even with the purchase of these, the rack is considerably cheaper than our other budget pick, albeit with fewer features and thinner steel.
The main thing that you want to be aware of when looking at more budget-friendly exercise equipment is the safety factor. If you spend less money, does the quality of the equipment go down so far that it is no longer worth the purchase. In the case of the FringeSport Squat Rack, the answer is no. There are available spotter arms, j-cups, high-quality steel, and sturdy construction that make this not only a budget-friendly rack but also a safe one.
Cheapest Pick: CAP Barbell FM-905Q Power Rack Squat Stand
If you are just starting your weight training journey, do not lot lift a lot of weight, or are hoping to upgrade to a new rack soon, then the CAP Power Rack Squat Stand might be for you. Available for purchase at Walmart or Amazon near you for right at $100, the price is right. The problem is that not much else is. It can only hold up to 300 pounds, and it does not hold this weight very well. It is constructed with higher gauge steel (higher is actually worse in this case if you were wondering) which means it could bend and break more easily than other racks.
This rack made the review only because there are some people out there who are just starting to lift and are wondering if lifting is for them. If this describes you and you do not want to pay an arm and a leg for a rack that you may not be using in a couple of weeks, then definitely try this out. But, understand that when you taste the sweetness that is training in your own home, you’ll want to upgrade. Thankfully, because this rack is so cheap, you can either resell it or give it to a friend that’s constantly bugging you about what home gym equipment you have.
Fold-Away Squat Racks are a newer type of squat rack that has cropped up due to the large number of people starting garage gyms. In most cases, they're as sturdy, if not sturdier than power racks. Although they often only have two posts, they have a lot of customization options available and there's a variety of different ways that the rack fold-away. All of this said, the most legitimate reason to have a fold-away rack is that you want to park your car in the garage.
Top Pick: PRx Performance Profile Rack
As previously stated, a fold-away rack is only worth having if you actually fold it away. Unfortunately, due to the amount of adjustments required, most fold-away racks never actually get "folded away." That is not the case with our top pick. The PRx Performance Profile Rack is by far the best fold-away rack on the market.
This rack’s stability, foldability, and overall usability make it an even better rack for most people seeking a collapsible rack but at an even higher price of around $750.
We’ve reviewed the PRx Profile Rack (and bench) in-depth and constantly recommend them to those seeking a great rack that also folds away. Although the components used in the PRx Racks aren’t superior to those used by Rogue and others, what separates them is the patented fold-away system. No other rack on the market folds-away as easily and simply as PRx Racks and they’ve literally built their entire business on this element (getting a deal on Shark Tank also helped.)
Although having a fold away rack like our other picks is nice, what we’ve found is that a majority of users with them in their home gyms simply leave them unfolded due to the difficulty and time involved in putting them away. With the PRx Profile Racks (Pro or Regular) they fold up so easy that you’ll rarely leave them folded out for an extended period of time—which is exactly how collapsible racks were meant to be used. If you’re not ever going to fold the rack away, there’s little reason to get one as they’re more costly and less functional than a full power rack that would take up the same space when assembled.
The PRx Racks have the option to come with no pull-up bar, a standard pull-up bar, or a kipping pull-up bar. We would definitely suggest the kipping pull-up bar for its versatility and height. And, despite the racks not being secured to the floor, they are incredibly stable. We loaded up over 600 LB on the rack and it didn’t even budge during unracking and re-racking. Same goes for when the pull-up bar is used. Whether my dainty Wife or 300 LB fried are using it, they enjoy the same rock-solid experience.
If you have the money and want the best fold-away rack available, this is it. We suggest the 3x3” Pro Series, although the standard Profile Rack will perform admirably.
Runner Up: Rogue RML-3WC Fold Back Wall Mount Rack
The Rogue RML-3WC Fold Back Wall Mount Rack is the Runner Up for the Best Fold Away Squat Rack largely due to its value. When purchasing garage equipment, space is oftentimes an issue (let’s be honest, it’s almost always an issue,) and Rogue has created a rack that helps you fight this space issue at a great price. The way it works is that you screw the rack's cross-members into the wall or stringer of your room/garage, and then it folds up when not in use to give you maximum space in your garage or weight room.
With 90” uprights, the ability to choose color finishes, two depth choices, and solid construction this foldaway rack is perfect to be the center of your small garage gym. Just like many of the other Rogue offerings, it is made from 3” x 3” 11-gauge steel which allows it to hold any weight that you will put on it. It is really easy to assemble and install and it looks great folded up or on display.
One reason to choose Rogue for a squat rack (and a reason so many do despite their being cheaper options) is due to accessory compatibility. If you’re buying a rack, it’s likely that you’ll expand it with different accessories in the future, and the RML-3WC has that capability due to its standard upright and hole size that’s similar to the other racks in Rogue’s line.
We like the Monster Lite 3WC because it’s also available in different colorways that allow your gym to have a pop of color for not much more money. When garage gyms started, pretty much everyone had a black power rack, now the tide is shifting and we see colors that run the gamut from lime green to hot pink. There’s something for everyone.
To make install easy, Rogue also offers custom CNC’d stringers that look good, increase rigidity of the rack and make it install a breeze. For $50 extra, we highly suggest getting them.
When you are purchasing a foldaway rack, you are purchasing it for one reason...space. You do not have enough and you need something out of the way. Rogue has seen this as an issue for garage gym owners and they filled that need with their traditional quality and features and all for under $600. Forget parking in the street, with a fold-away rack, you can park in the garage (although we will likely never do this...)
Budget Pick: Titan T-3 Series Folding Power Rack
If you haven’t noticed the trend yet, Titan Fitness is taking similar designs as Rogue Fitness and offering them at cheaper prices due to the nature of them being imported from some distant land. The Titan T-3 Series Folding Power Rack is no different and although their means of bringing products to market is questionable, the functionality of their products are not.
The T-3 is a well-liked squat rack in the community (we did a full comparison between it and the Rogue R-3 that you can find here) and the T-3 Folding Power Rack utilizes the same steel and hardware but adds in the ability to fold the rack away when not in use. This type of rack has become extremely popular and for good reason, it simply works extremely well and can be done at a good price point.
The T-3 Folding Rack from Titan is the best priced fold-away rack currently on the market. They aren’t the only company making this style of rack, in fact, there are others that likely have the same rack made in the same factory as Titan (see the FringeSport Retractable Power Rack as an example)\
Although we’re fans of American Manufacturing and have had issues with Titan’s shipping and customer service in the past, it’s hard to not be enticed by the price. The T-3 Folding Rack will get the job done if you’re on a budget, no doubt.
How much should I spend on a squat rack?
This is very much a personal preference. Some choose to buy $1,000 racks while others make their own. The biggest suggestion we can give is to buy the best you can afford. Squat racks are, in their nature, long-lasting products. Ideally, you'd be able to buy a squat rack and never have to upgrade, unless you wanted to. So, buy what you can afford and don't forget that a squat rack will not make you stronger, using it will.
Rogue Fitness vs Titan Fitness?
We get asked to make this comparison quite a bit. We certainly prefer the quality, customer service, resale value, and overall build that comes with Rogue equipment. However, Titan is much cheaper in most instances and as such is a popular option. In our opinion, although we think Rogue is superior, Titan is honestly good enough for most people.
If a squat rack is cheap, does that mean it's unsafe?
Not necessarily. Racks have been getting cheaper and cheaper over the years due to the amount of buyers that are now present. A cheap rack does not automatically equate to it being an unsafe or "bad" rack. However, in most cases, the more you spend, the safer and "better" a rack will be.
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