We test and review fitness products based on an independent, multi-point methodology. If you use our links to purchase something, we may earn a commission. Read our disclosures.

MuscleTech Vapor X5 pre-workout is a popular supplement among those trying to build muscle and increase lean body mass. In my deep dive into the ingredient profile, I’ve found some interesting things out about this pre-workout, all of which I’ll divulge in my MuscleTech Vapor X5 review.

Important Info About This Product

Editor’s note: MuscleTech Vapor X5 Pre-Workout contains a fat burner called yohimbe extract (yohimbine) that is banned in several countries, including the UK, Australia, and Canada, for its association with adverse health effects. For those willing to overlook the risks associated with this ingredient, we review MuscleTech Vapor X5 through our usual critical lens and discuss the potential benefits and drawbacks of this product.

Medical disclaimer: This article is intended for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for medical advice. For health advice, contact a licensed healthcare provider. GGR also recommends choosing a product that has been third-party tested for quality.

Welcome To Our Lab

By our lab, we mean our gyms, in which we’ve tested close to 50 pre-workout supplements in our quest to find the very best, from the best natural pre-workouts to the best pump pre-workouts. Our certified personal trainers, certified nutrition coaches, CrossFit L-1 and USA Weightlifting L-1 coaches, and athletes have used and researched supplements extensively so you can skip the testing phase and buy the right product for you without wasting money or time.

MuscleTech Vapor X5 Pre-Workout

MuscleTech Vapor X5

GGR Score: 3.6 starstarstarstarstar

Product Highlights

  • Very affordable pre-workout
  • Available in Blue Raspberry Fusion, Miami Spring Break, Fruit Punch Blast flavors
  • 150 mg of caffeine per serving
  • 1.5 g of creatine and citrulline per serving
  • 1.6 g of beta-alanine per serving

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Very affordable
  • Comes in three flavors
  • Good dosages of caffeine and beta-alanine

Cons

  • Not third-party tested
  • A bit light on citrulline
  • Some don't like creatine in their pre-workout

Bottom Line

MuscleTech Vapor X5 is a very affordable pre-workout available in three flavors. It contains good dosages of caffeine and beta-alanine, but is a little light on citrulline according to the research-backed daily recommended amount.

A Quick Look at MuscleTech Vapor X5 Pre-Workout

MuscleTech says that the Vapor X5 pre-workout (formerly of the full name Vapor X5 Next Gen Pre-Workout) is “specially designed to help increase energy, focus, and endurance, so you can power through your toughest training sessions.” 

All pre-workout supplements claim this, so we’re going to look deeper into the ingredients and dosages to find out if MuscleTech Vapor X5 lives up to its claims and if it’s one of the best pre-workouts

Before You Buy

  • You can take one or two scoops of this pre-workout, but with one scoop, some of the ingredients are underdosed; with two scoops, there is a very high dose of caffeine.
  • There are only three flavors available, but customers seem generally pleased with them.
  • This pre-workout contains a fat burner compound (yohimbe) that has been associated with negative side effects.

Is MuscleTech Vapor X5 Pre-Workout Worth It?

muscletech vapor x5 pre workout

MuscleTech Vapor X5 is popular in the bodybuilding community and many people who take this supplement claim it gives them explosive energy and great muscle pumps. It’s quite cheap, at $1.66 per serving or $0.83 per serving, depending on whether you take one or two scoops as a serving. 

Great for:

  • People with a high caffeine tolerance
  • Individuals on a maintenance dose of creatine (have already completed a loading phase)
  • People who don’t care much about muscle pumps and prefer to prioritize endurance and strength effects 

Not recommended for:

  • People who are caffeine-sensitive
  • Individuals looking for a pre-workout with a loading dose of creatine
  • Those who prioritize muscle pumps/nitric oxide boosters (no citrulline in this product)
  • People who want to avoid fat burners

RELATED: Strongest Pre-Workout

MuscleTech Vapor X5 Pre-Workout Specs

Price per serving$0.83 for a 1-scoop serving; $1.66 for a 2-scoop serving
Serving size1 scoop (9 g)
FlavorsBlue Razz, Miami Spring Break, Fruit Punch Blast
Caffeine content190 mg in 1 scoop; 380 mg in 2 scoops
Sugar per serving0 g
SweetenersSucralose
Other key ingredientsCreatine monohydrate, niacin, choline, sodium, potassium, betaine anhydrous, beta-alanine, taurine, Nitrosigine (arginine inositol silicate), Hawthorn extract, choline bitartrate, L-theanine, galangal extract, yohimbe extract

Experience Using MuscleTech Vapor X5 Pre-Workout

Kate Meier, GGR head of content and product tester, bought MuscleTech Vapor X5 pre-workout to share with the members of her Olympic weightlifting team. Jacob, one member of the team, shared his experience with MuscleTech pre-workout with us: 

“I felt more awake pretty quickly,” he says, after taking a two-scoop dose, which has 380 milligrams of caffeine—no surprise there. 

muscletech vapor x5 pre workout review cover

“I took this at the end of my work day about 15 minutes before my workout session,” Jacob says, “and I could tell some of that low-energy feeling I had at the end of the work day went away.”

Jacob didn’t experience any tingling despite the 3.2 grams of beta-alanine stated on the label, just intense alertness. Did he get the “unparalleled energy” that MuscleTech promises? No, but enough good energy to make a difference.

Price Per Serving

MuscleTech Vapor X5 has one of the best prices per serving we’ve seen. If you opt for a 1-scoop serving, you’ll enjoy a very low cost per serving of just 83 cents. Unfortunately, a 1-scoop serving is quite underdosed, as I’ll explain more in the formulation section. 

For the clinically backed doses of pre-workout ingredients you’re probably looking for, you’ll need to take two scoops, which bumps the price per serving up to $1.66 per serving—still on the inexpensive side. 

muscletech vapor x5 pre workout

Formulation

This chart outlines all of the ingredients in MuscleTech Vapor X5 pre-workout, the doses they are present in, and what they are for. 

IngredientDosagePurpose
Niacin15 / 30 mgPart of the coenzymes NAD and NADP1 and participate in anabolic reactions, but exercise implications are unclear2
Choline40 / 80 mgAn amino acid important in many steps of metabolism3
Sodium5 / 10 mgHydration and muscle contraction, but the dose is negligible4 
Potassium45 / 90 mgHydration and muscle contraction, but the dose is negligible4 
Creatine monohydrate1.5 / 3 gProven to result in increased lean muscle mass, power, strength, and endurance5
Betaine anhydrous 1.25 / 2.5 gMay improve endurance by boosting endogenous carnosine production6
Beta-alanine1.6 / 3.2 gAnti-fatigue agent/muscle endurance enhancer due to its effect on carnosine production7
Taurine500 / 1,000 mgAmino acid that may prevent breakdown of muscle fiber (catabolism)8
Nitrosigine (arginine inositol silicate)750 / 1,500 mgArginine is an amino acid and nitric oxide booster associated with increased aerobic and anaerobic performance9
Caffeine anhydrous190 / 380 mgStimulant for energy and focus
Hawthorn extract200 / 400 mgHistorically used to treat heart failure10; thought to have positive effects on blood pressure11 and anxiety12 due to polyphenol content. More research is needed.
Choline bitartrate100 / 200 mgMay support focus13
L-theanine62.5 / 125 mgMay support focus14
Galangal extract25 / 50 mgRich in antioxidants and may fight pain, but research is unclear15
Yohimbe extract20 / 40 mgUsed as a fat burner16, which may have dangerous implications 

I’m surprised to see that there is no citrulline in this pre-workout, since L-citrulline and citrulline malate are considered the top ingredients for muscle pumps. 

It does contain a “Musclebuilding Matrix” of creatine and betaine, as well as Nitrosigine, an arginine compound. But personally, I think this pre would be better off skipping the creatine and instead including citrulline, which is one of the best pre-workout ingredients.

The last three ingredients are part of MuscleTech’s “Neurosensory Blend,” which is supposed to act as a nootropic and enhance focus and mental clarity.  

Unfortunately, this pre-workout is underdosed if you only take one scoop. So if you’re not ready for the 380-milligram serving of caffeine in MuscleTech’s full “Energy+ Matrix,” you’re better off looking elsewhere. 

My chief complaint about this pre-workout, though, is that it contains an extract used as a fat burner that has been associated with negative health effects, including GI distress, high heart rate, high blood pressure, and anxiety, according to a 2010 review in the Annals of Pharmacotherapy17. There are also reports of inaccurate labeling with this ingredient, as detailed in a 2016 report in Drug Testing and Analysis18.

Yohimbe is banned as a dietary supplement in some countries, including Australia, Canada, and the UK19.

Taste and Solubility

Jacob, our product tester, tried the blue raspberry flavor (Blue Razz Freeze). “It’s a pleasant taste,” he says, noting that “it doesn’t smack you in the face as being overly strong” and it “tastes like your standard berry-flavored drink.” Jacob also says it mixes really well with no grittiness.

RELATED: Best-Tasting Protein Powder

Side Effects

Some ingredients in MuscleTech Vapor X5 might result in minor side effects. 

Caffeine in high doses can cause jitters, nervousness, anxiety, GI distress, temporary high blood pressure, and temporary high heart rate. 

Creatine can cause GI distress, too, particularly bloating due to water retention. 

Beta-alanine is known to cause paresthesia, a tingling sensation of the skin that’s often more intense on the face and extremities. Paresthesia is nothing to worry about, and it generally becomes less noticeable the more you take pre-workout.

Yohimbe extract is associated with anxiety, GI distress, high heart rate, and high blood pressure16

Third-Party Testing 

From what I can tell, MuscleTech Vapor X5 is not third-party tested. We include third-party testing in our criteria against which we rate products because it’s the only way a brand can truly prove that its labels are accurate. 

If a product lacks third-party testing, we look for other indications of label transparency and efficacy, including exclusion of proprietary blends and inclusion of clinically backed ingredient dosing. 

MuscleTech Vapor X5 doesn’t include any proprietary blends and does list the amounts for each ingredient in the product. However, the inclusion of yohimbe extract, although disclosed, makes us hesitant to recommend this pre-workout to just anyone. 

MuscleTech Vapor X5  vs Redcon1 Total War Pre-Workout

Redcon1 Total War Pre-Workout

Redcon 1 Total War Pre-Workout

GGR Score: 3.9 starstarstarstarstar

Product Highlights

  • Original, long-standing Total War formula
  • 20+ unique flavors
  • Full, effective dosages in every scoop
  • Caffeine from multiple sources for longer-lasting effects

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Fully transparent label
  • No proprietary blends
  • Ingredients targeting pump, energy, and focus
  • Effective dosages of ingredients
  • 320 mg of caffeine per scoop
  • Dicaffeine malate for long-lasting energy
  • Competitively priced at $1.43/serving

Cons

  • High dosage of caffeine can be too much for some users
  • Beta-alanine may cause uncomfortable itchiness

Bottom Line

Total War is a complete pre-workout with effective dosages, a transparent label, and flavors galore. This is a great overall option for any gym-goer, though the caffeine-sensitive may need to start with a half dosage.

Redcon1 Total War Pre-Workout is another popular bodybuilding pre-workout supplement. Here’s a look at how it compares to MuscleTech Vapor X5. 

MuscleTech Vapor X5Redcon1 Total War
Price per serving$0.83 or $1.66$1.43
Flavor options327
Caffeine per serving190 / 380 mg320 mg
Other key ingredientsCreatine monohydrate, niacin, choline, sodium, potassium, betaine anhydrous, beta-alanine, taurine, Nitrosigine (arginine inositol silicate), Hawthorn extract, choline bitartrate, L-theanine, galangal extract, yohimbe extractSodium, citrulline malate, beta-alanine, taurine, agmatine sulfate, juniper berry extract, green tea extract, theobromine, naringin extract, BioPerine
Third-party testedNoNo

As you can see, the formulas are quite similar. Total War contains citrulline malate and BioPerine (a nutrient absorption aid), but doesn’t contain choline, arginine, creatine, or betaine. 

I would say that MuscleTech Vapor X5 is the better choice for increased strength, power, and endurance, while Total War is better for focus, mental acuity, and muscle pumps. 

Read my full Total War pre-workout review for a more in-depth look at this product.

Customer Experience 

It’s unclear how long the return window for this product is. On the product page on the website, a 30-day return policy is highlighted. However, the official refund policy page states that MuscleTech offers a 60-day return policy. Since this product includes 30 servings, I’m inclined to tell you to request a refund or return within 30 days to be safe.

Shipping is free on orders over $20, and this product costs $24.99 for a one-time purchase or $19.99 for a subscribe-and-save purchase, so it qualifies for free shipping if you choose the former.

If you have any questions or concerns with your product, you can contact the company via an email contact form on the website.

Ordering MuscleTech Vapor X5 Pre-Workout

You can order MuscleTech Vapor X5 directly from the MuscleTech website, where you can sign up for a subscribe-and-save option to save $5 on each tub of the pre-workout. You can also find it on Amazon or at other retailers, including GNC, Muscle & Strength, iHerb, Bodybuilding.com, Vitacost, Vitamin World, AllStar Health, Walgreens, and more.

Customer Reviews

On the MuscleTech website, Vapor X5 pre-workout has an average rating of 4.9 out of 5 stars. On Amazon, it has a rating of 4.2 out of 5 stars. Customer reviews indicate that the majority of buyers are happy with their purchase. 

One customer wrote, “I really like this pre-workout. I have been working out for several months already and this product really makes a difference. I have a high caffeine tolerance, and even so, one scoop of this is more than enough to get you going through your workout. It tastes good and at least for me, it starts kicking after 15 min on an empty stomach.”

That same reviewer recommends that caffeine sensitive people “take it easy” and take a lower dose, otherwise they may risk GI discomfort and insomnia. 

Several buyers wrote that the flavor is just OK or “eh,” but remember that taste is very subjective; our product tester had no issues with the Blue Razz Freeze flavor. 

Final Verdict of Our MuscleTech Vapor X5 Review

This MuscleTech product is clinically dosed and effective with a two-scoop serving. It contains key pre-workout ingredients that can help you stay focused and work harder in the gym, eke out more reps, and lift heavier weights. 

However, for those who do not want to consume 380 milligrams of caffeine in one sitting, a different pre-workout is best since a one-scoop serving of MuscleTech Vapor X5 is underdosed.

Additionally, people should be aware that the ingredient yohimbe extract has been used as a fat burner and is associated with negative health implications, as well as being banned in several countries. 

MuscleTech Vapor X5 Full Rating

MuscleTech Vapor X5 Pre-Workout

MuscleTech Vapor X5 is a high-stim pre-workout with clinically backed doses of key pre-workout ingredients. However, it does contain a fat burner compound associated with negative effects.

Product Brand: MuscleTech

Product Currency: USD

Product Price: 24.99

Product In-Stock: InStock

Editor's Rating:
3.6
Price Per Serving – 4.5
Formulation – 3.5
Taste – 4.75
Solubility – 5
Side Effects – 3
Third-Party Testing – 1
Customer Service – 3
Customer Reviews – 4.2
Check Price

MuscleTech Vapor X5 FAQs

What are the benefits of MuscleTech Vapor X5?

MuscleTech Vapor X5 pre-workout may give you energy, help you focus, and generally improve your performance during your workout.

How much caffeine is in MuscleTech Vapor X5?

In one scoop, MuscleTech Vapor X5 contains 190 milligrams of caffeine. In two scoops, there are 380 milligrams.

When should I take MuscleTech Vapor X5?

For the best results, take pre-workout 15 to 60 minutes before your workout, depending on how your body reacts to caffeine. 

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any diseases.

References 

  1. Djadjo S, Bajaj T. Niacin. [Updated 2022 Mar 28]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK541036/
  2. Davis GR, Nelson AG. Niacin supplementation impairs exercise performance [published online ahead of print, 2021 Oct 26]. Int J Vitam Nutr Res. 2021;10.1024/0300-9831/a000736. doi:10.1024/0300-9831/a000736
  3. National Institutes of Health. Choline: Fact Sheet for Health Professionals. Office of Dietary Supplements.
  4. Nielsen OB, Clausen T. The Na+/K(+)-pump protects muscle excitability and contractility during exercise. Exerc Sport Sci Rev. 2000;28(4):159-164.
  5. Kreider, R.B., Kalman, D.S., Antonio, J. et al. International Society of Sports Nutrition position stand: safety and efficacy of creatine supplementation in exercise, sport, and medicine. J Int Soc Sports Nutr 14, 18 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12970-017-0173-z
  6. Arazi H, Aboutalebi S, Taati B, Cholewa JM, Candow DG. Effects of short-term betaine supplementation on muscle endurance and indices of endocrine function following acute high-intensity resistance exercise in young athletes. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2022;19(1):1-16. Published 2022 Mar 22. doi:10.1080/15502783.2022.2041988
  7. Hill CA, Harris RC, Kim HJ, et al. Influence of beta-alanine supplementation on skeletal muscle carnosine concentrations and high intensity cycling capacity. Amino Acids. 2007;32(2):225-233. doi:10.1007/s00726-006-0364-4
  8. De Carvalho FG, Galan BSM, Santos PC, et al. Taurine: A Potential Ergogenic Aid for Preventing Muscle Damage and Protein Catabolism and Decreasing Oxidative Stress Produced by Endurance Exercise. Front Physiol. 2017;8:710. Published 2017 Sep 20. doi:10.3389/fphys.2017.00710
  9. Viribay A, Burgos J, Fernández-Landa J, Seco-Calvo J, Mielgo-Ayuso J. Effects of Arginine Supplementation on Athletic Performance Based on Energy Metabolism: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Nutrients. 2020;12(5):1300. Published 2020 May 2. doi:10.3390/nu12051300
  10. National Institutes of Health | U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Hawthorn. National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health.
  11. Verma T, Sinha M, Bansal N, Yadav SR, Shah K, Chauhan NS. Plants Used as Antihypertensive. Nat Prod Bioprospect. 2021;11(2):155-184. doi:10.1007/s13659-020-00281-x
  12. Hanus M, Lafon J, Mathieu M. Double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled study to evaluate the efficacy and safety of a fixed combination containing two plant extracts (Crataegus oxyacantha and Eschscholtzia californica) and magnesium in mild-to-moderate anxiety disorders. Curr Med Res Opin. 2004;20(1):63-71. doi:10.1185/030079903125002603
  13. Penry JT, Manore MM. Choline: an important micronutrient for maximal endurance-exercise performance?. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2008;18(2):191-203. doi:10.1123/ijsnem.18.2.191
  14. Owen GN, Parnell H, De Bruin EA, Rycroft JA. The combined effects of L-theanine and caffeine on cognitive performance and mood. Nutr Neurosci. 2008;11(4):193-198. doi:10.1179/147683008X301513
  15. Altman RD, Marcussen KC. Effects of a ginger extract on knee pain in patients with osteoarthritis. Arthritis Rheum. 2001;44(11):2531-2538. doi:10.1002/1529-0131(200111)44:11<2531::aid-art433>3.0.co;2-j
  16. Ostojic SM. Yohimbine: the effects on body composition and exercise performance in soccer players. Res Sports Med. 2006;14(4):289-299. doi:10.1080/15438620600987106
  17. Kearney T, Tu N, Haller C. Adverse drug events associated with yohimbine-containing products: a retrospective review of the California Poison Control System reported cases. Ann Pharmacother. 2010;44(6):1022-1029. doi:10.1345/aph.1P060
  18. Cohen PA, Wang YH, Maller G, DeSouza R, Khan IA. Pharmaceutical quantities of yohimbine found in dietary supplements in the USA. Drug Test Anal. 2016;8(3-4):357-369. doi:10.1002/dta.1849
  19. EFSA ANS Panel (EFSA Panel on Food Additives and Nutrient Sources Added to Food), 2013. Scientific Opinion on the evaluation of the safety in use of Yohimbe (Pausinystalia yohimbe (K. Schum.) Pierre ex Beille). EFSA Journal 2013; 11( 7):3302, 46 pp. doi:10.2903/j.efsa.2013.3302

Further reading

Fitbit Charge 4 Review: Wearable, Affordable Fitness Tracking Cover Image
Fitbit Charge 4 Review: Wearable, Affordable Fitness Tracking

For under $130, the Fitbit Charge 4 is a reasonably priced fitness tracker that sports a sleek design. With new features like on-board GPS and Spotify control, the Charge 4 is definitely an upgrade from the Charge 3, which was released in 2019. In my opinion, this is the best fitness tracker for most people.In this Fitbit Charge 4 review, I’ll give you the ins and outs on all the features, ease of operation, and if it is worth your money. As with any equipment I review, I put the product to the test to give you all the positives and negatives in order for you to make the best buying decision for you.My Favorite Things:Built-in GPS24/7 heart rate trackingSleep tracking capabilitiesWater resistant up to 5 ATM/50 metersUnder $130My Callouts:Narrow screen at under an inch wideBattery drains quickly with use of GPSGrayscale display Read more

Types of Protein Powder and How to Find the Right One For You Cover Image
Types of Protein Powder and How to Find the Right One For You

Overwhelmed and confused by too many types of protein powder? We’ll help you sort through them and decide on the best option for you. Read more

Ironmaster Promo Code (2024): Best Ironmaster Deals and Special Discounts Cover Image
Ironmaster Promo Code (2024): Best Ironmaster Deals and Special Discounts

Our Ironmaster promo code page will help you find the best Ironmaster discounts, sales, and deals. Read more

Bridge Built Phoenix Squat Rack Review 2024: A Solid Space-Saver For Your Home Gym Cover Image
Bridge Built Phoenix Squat Rack Review 2024: A Solid Space-Saver For Your Home Gym

A beefy, overbuilt squat rack that saves space in your home gym; check out our Bridge BUILT Phoenix Squat Rack review. Read more