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The MX Select Adjustable Dumbbells are available in 35-, 55-, and now 85-pound increments and were one of the original, quick-change adjustable dumbbells. After using them over the past year and comparing them to the dozens of competitors we have on hand, I have mixed feelings. 

In this MX Select Adjustable Dumbbell review, I’ll tell you the good and the not-so-good about this piece of home gym equipment. Like everything, there is plenty to love, but also things that could be improved upon if later iterations were to come out.

MX Select Review
MX Select MX55 Adjustable Dumbbells
MX Select MX55 Adjustable Dumbbells

The MX55 Rapid Change Dumbbell System features our unique MX Select patented rack & pinion selection system: compact size, balanced feel and totally secure.With the MX55 Dumbbell cradled you select the weight from 10-55 lbs (4.5-24.9 kg) at the turn of a dial. The selected weight level is locked into place as soon as the selector dial is pushed home.

Why You Should Trust Us

With tons of adjustable dumbbells on the market today, it isn’t surprising that I’ve been excited to get my hands on as many as possible to try. As the number of home gyms and home gym set ups has increased, so too has the amount of dumbbells that take up little space, but have a wide weight capacity range. 

I’ve tried dozens of different dumbbells, so I know the main things fitness nerds like myself are looking for in a good pair. Aspects like durability, overall value, weight range, shape, and warranty are all things I take into consideration before recommending a product.

A Quick Look at the MX Select Adjustable Dumbbells

adjustable dumbbells sitting on the ground.

The MX Select Adjustable Dumbbells and, most notably, the MX55 Dumbbells, are quick to change, compact, and balanced while training. The issue isn’t whether they’re a quality dumbbell, but that since their inception, there have been many that have improved on the design and done so at a lower cost to the consumer.

If you’re wondering how the MX55 Select Dumbbells stack up against the likes of the NUOBELLs, Powerblocks and Ironmasters, stay tuned as we cover all this and more.

Coop using the adjustable dumbbells.

Coop’s Tips:

  • MX has adjustable dumbbells that cap out at 30, 55, and 80 pounds. This is useful if you want to use more or less weight.
  • Please don’t drop these. You’ll probably start crying because you’ll have thrown hundreds of dollars down the drain when they inevitably get damaged from the fall.
The dumbbells sitting on a metal counter.

Pros:

  • Plastic knobs are quick to change
  • Very balanced and even distribution of weight 
  • Cradle looks great and prevents corrosion due to the material 
  • Compact and great for small spaces

Cons:

  • Can be difficult to get the weight back into the proper slots 
  • Cannot be dropped
  • If you want to upgrade, you have to buy an entirely new pair of dumbbells
Unopened box of the adjustable dumbbells.

Video Review

Is the MX Select Adjustable Dumbbells Worth It?

Let’s get into the meat and potatoes of the review at the jump. Should you pick up the MX Select Dumbbells or go with one of the many other adjustable dumbbell options on the market for your home gym? Here is what I recommend.

Half opened box of the adjustable dumbbells

Great for:

  • Those that want a rather fast-changing dumbbell that takes up little space.
  • People who don’t want to lift heavier than 80 pounds per dumbbell. 
  • Trainees that don’t like the feeling of a uniquely shaped dumbbell like the Powerblock dumbbells, but would prefer something more familiar.

Not recommended for:

  • If you’re cost-conscious, then I recommend looking at other options (more on those later) as these aren’t the best value.
  • Heavy lifters who want a heavier max weight
The yellow plastic dial that is used to change the weight.

MX Select Adjustable Dumbbells Specs

Footprint16.02” L x 16.29” W x 8.14” H
Total Weight118 pounds
Replaces10 sets of dumbbells
Dumbbell Body MaterialSteel
Handle DimensionsGrip Length: 5.31”
Grip Diameter: 1.29”
GripAntimicrobial contoured grip
Weight PlatesSteel coated in Polyamide Nylon
Weight Range10-55 pounds
Weight Rack and CradlePowder coated steel
Handset MechanismSteel and ABS

Using the MX Select Adjustable Dumbbells

Adjustable dumbbells like the MX Selects are some of the best home gym equipment we recommend. Although we think barbells are fantastic, similar to some of the best kettlebells, dumbbells present such a wide range of potential exercises in an extremely compact form. The MX Selects, and particularly the MX55 Selectorized Dumbbells that we brought in for review, hit this nail on the head. 

Up close pic of the knurling.

Changing the Weight

In an extremely small footprint, the MX55’s can go from 10 to 55 pounds (in 5-pound increments) with the turn of a dial.

The dial I allude to is the first thing most people notice when they see the MX dumbbells. The Weight Selector Dial lists numbers 1-10 and corresponds with the Weight Legend found on the cradle system. The dial must be changed separately on both sides of the dumbbell to get the desired weight, which does take more time than, say NUOBELLs, but not significantly more.

To adjust the weight, you must first depress the Weight Selector Release Button, which then pops up the dial. This is all a pretty quick and smart process that is somewhat satisfying during a training session.

Silver knurling of the adjustable dumbbells.

Storage

One accessory that is pretty much a necessity for most will be the Dumbbell System Weight Stand. It works with the MX30, MX55, plus the MX85’s and allows the dumbbells to sit off the floor, making them easier to remove or put back in place. The entire system and stand create an attractive, modern design that would look good in a garage gym like mine or in someone’s spare bedroom.

After you select your weight and plunge the dials in, you simply grab the handles and pull the dumbbells out. There are two lips on each weight plate that secures into the ones next to them while an internal rod (that is adjusted via the dial) keeps them from falling off. This is an ingenious solution that keeps the plates secure without overcomplication.

Coop doing farmers carries with the adjustable dumbbells.

In Use

When pulled off the stand and placed on your knees before laying back on a weight bench for bench press, the flat ends sit comfortably on your quads. During press or curls, the MX55’s feel very balanced and comfortable even at their max weight. This isn’t often the case with rapid-change dumbbells, as they’re known to have long handles that feel unwieldy and unique shapes that aren’t as balanced.

When you’re done with your set and want to change the weight or simply finish your workout, you place the dumbbells back in the cradles. Although this does take a bit of skill at first, over time the handles get easier to place in their slots.

Adjustable dumbbells sitting next to the silver MX55 stand.

Construction

Gym equipment gets used and abused, even if you’re taking extra precautions. Here’s what makes up the MX Select Rapid Change Dumbbell System.

The Handles

Conjoining the two heads of the dumbbell heads together is the handle. Approaching the MX Selects for the first time during a training session, the steel knurled handle was great to use. I personally prefer knurled, straight handles which is why the fixed set in my garage are the REP Rubber Hex Head Dumbbells that we’ve reviewed.

Although my set and all of the ones I’ve seen on the market use a knurled handle, MX Selects now come standard with a contoured grip handle that is antimicrobial. It’s understandable that they would offer an antimicrobial option with the amount of germs in the gym, but 99% of adjustable dumbbells are used in a home gym setting by a single user or a couple of people that are family.

I wish the knurled handle was still available as an option, but maybe that’s something that can be done in the future.

Weight Selection System

Each dumbbell has two plastic dials with the numbers 1-10 listed on top. They’re quick to change and are satisfying to use. The dials extend a metal rod that’s inside of the handle to capture the desired amount of plates.

Weight Plates

Each end of the MX dumbbell handle has weight plates. These plates have a steel core that is coated in polyamide nylon. Nylon makes for a quiet dumbbell during training that also lasts a long time.

The inner workings of the adjustable dumbbells with the slim metal inside.

Weight Rack and Cradle

The cradle that the dumbbell sits in is bent steel that’s been powder coated in silver gloss paint. It looks good and prevents corrosion.

Coop doing a curl with the adjustable dumbbells.

MX Select vs NUOBELLs

The dumbbells that are most similar to MX Selects are NUOBELLs. It would seem that the creators of NUOBELLs saw the popularity and smart design of MX55 and tried to improve the functionality. Both of these dumbbells are using similarly designed internal mechanisms that utilize metal rods to select the correct amount of weight.

MX Select vs NUOBELL
NÜOBELL Adjustable Dumbbells
NÜOBELL Adjustable Dumbbells

NÜOBELL give you the convenience of all-in-one adjustable 5-80lb dumbbells that are easy to use and have superior durability thanks to its machined steel weight plates. This set of innovative dumbbells will quickly become your go to favorites.These are sold as a set of 2 x 80lb dumbbellsWeight Range lb5-10-15-20-25-30-35-40-45-50-55-60-65-70-75-80The material is steel and plastic Net weight: 80lbIncludes portable cradles for both adjustable dumbbells.

Although MX Select’s were the original, NUOBELL’s are faster to change, go heavier (except for the latest MX85 release,) and are cheaper on a dollar per pound basis. Neither is able to be dropped and both have their quirks when it comes to placing the handles back in the weight stack.

I like both options, but if you want a heavier dumbbell, then we prefer NUOBELL’s over MX Selects.

I suggest checking out our in-depth review of NUOBELL Dumbbells for more details.

Regular picture of the adjustable dumbbells on the ground.

MX Select vs Bowflex SelectTech 552s 

The Bowflex SelectTech 552 Dumbbells are the most popular adjustable dumbbells in the world at the moment. This is for multiple reasons, but it’s largely because they combine a decent max weight capacity at 52.5 pounds per dumbbell with a budget-friendly price.

4.50
MX Select vs Bowflex 552's
Bowflex SelectTech 552 Adjustable Dumbbells
Bowflex SelectTech 552 Adjustable Dumbbells

These adjustable dumbbells replace 15 sets of weights. Weights adjust from 5 to 52.5 lbs in 2.5 lb increments up to the first 25 lbs. Easy-to-use selection dials for adjusting weights. They are sold as a pair. Easily switch from one exercise to next and with the turn of a dial you can change your resistance, enabling you to gradually increase your strength. Versatile workout for your legs, back, chest, abs, shoulders and arms. Compatible with the free Bowflex SelectTech® training App for iOS and Android.No more picking up 30 different dumbbells to give you the results you want! Say goodbye to 15 sets of dumbbells cluttering your workout space. With weight that adjusts from 5 to 52.5 lbs., you'll continue to see results as your fitness level improves. Durable molding around metal plates provides for a smooth lift-off and quieter workouts...no clanging metal plates! With the wider weight range you can do heavy exercises such as shrugs and lunges as well as lighter exercises such as curls and raises.

In our review of the Bowflex SelectTech 552s, we really liked the value proposition, which comes out to almost half the cost of the MX55s. We greatly prefer the compact form of the MX Select Dumbbells over Bowflex’s as well as the handle, but they’re vastly different price points.

If you’re on a budget and looking for the best budget home gym equipment, we’d suggest the 552s over the MX Selects, but we think most people would prefer the experience of the MX Selectorized Dumbbells over the Bowflex SelectTech series.

Silver MX55 stand.

Customer Experience 

The warranty provided on these dumbbells is 12 months. This is okay, but not exceptional for something you’ll be paying over $500 for. If you order through Amazon, you’ll be able to return these within 30 days of receiving them, provided you don’t send them back in used condition. 

On the MX Select website, there is an option to contact the brand with any questions you have. However, they do encourage you to read through the FAQs before sending an email inquiry. I was disappointed to note that they do not have a live chat option. 

Ordering the MX Select Adjustable Dumbbells

We received the MX55 and MX80 dumbbells to review. Both showed up in branded cardboard boxes with strapping. Each box had a large red “DO NOT DROP” sticker that delivery drivers like to ignore, but the boxes were all in pretty fair shape.

Each dumbbell sat in styrofoam encasing within their box and was wrapped in plastic.

Although there was some minor cosmetic damage to the boxes that happened during shipping, the dumbbells themselves looked pristine and untouched.

I was a happy lifter.

Customer Reviews

On Amazon, the MX Select Adjustable Dumbbells have an overall rating of 4.7 out of 5 with close to 50 reviews. Customers love the helpful stand, easy adjustment, and their typical dumbbell shape, which can be uncommon with adjustable dumbbells. One positive review from someone with the screen name “The Bullfighter” said this: “If you’re not looking to go over 55lbs and want to save space and money, this is it. Highly recommended.”

On the other hand, some customers felt that these adjustable dumbbells were getting stuck in the stand if you put them in slightly crooked at all. Others also mentioned that you should absolutely not drop these when weightlifting because you could compromise the durability of the dumbbells. 

Final Verdict of Our MX Select Adjustable Dumbbells Review

Overall, I would recommend the MX Select Adjustable Dumbbells if you’re looking for a solid option with a traditional fixed dumbbell shape. However, if you’re looking for a heavier expandable option or want to be able to drop your dumbbells, these are not the best option for you. I do think they are a solid buy and you likely would not be disappointed with your purchase if you decide to go with the MX Selects, provided you’re not on a super tight budget.

Inside of the adjustable dumbbells.

Full Rating

MX Select MX55 Adjustable Dumbbells

The MX Select Adjustable Dumbbells are available in 35-, 55-, and now 85-pound increments and were one of the original, quick-change adjustable dumbbells.

Product Brand: MX Select

Product Currency: $

Product Price: 599.99

Product In-Stock: InStock

Editor's Rating:
4.2

MX Select MX55 Adjustable Dumbbells

Construction – 4.3

Handle – 4.3

Compactness – 4.5

Weight Capacity – 3.5

Stand – 4.5

Value – 4

Customer Service – 4

Customer Reviews – 4.7

MX Select Adjustable Dumbbells FAQs

Do the MX Select Adjustable Dumbbells come with a warranty?

Yes, they come with a 1 year warranty.

For strength training, is it better to use fixed dumbbells or an adjustable dumbbell set?

Either will do a fantastic job at helping you gain strength at home. However, if you have a set of adjustable dumbbells, you might end up having more weight options than you would with limited fixed dumbbells.

What kind of training routine should I do using the MX Select MX55 Adjustable Dumbbells?

You can use this weight set for a variety of things when doing a home workout. These include things like squats, deadlifts, curls, or pretty much anything you’d do with a traditional fixed dumbbell.

RELATED: Dumbbell Exercises

How do you know what dumbbell weight to use?

Again, this all comes down to personal preference and what your fitness level is. Like with any fitness equipment, play around with the different options and see what feels challenging but not impossible. This is a great place to start.

Further reading

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