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Editor’s Note: The NordicTrack CX 938 elliptical is no longer in production. We suggest viewing the NordicTrack Commercial 9.9 elliptical as the best alternative, or view our Best NordicTrack Ellipticals roundup for more options.

The NordicTrack CX 938 elliptical was an affordable elliptical that retailed for just under  $900. It has now been discontinued by NordicTrack, since they released a new line of high-end ellipticals that all feature built-in screens. It has many technological additions indicative of its time, such as an earlier version of iFIT compatibility, and a console that could connect to your CD player or VCR. The CX 938’s stand-out feature was its adjustable stride length.  

While it is no longer being manufactured, you may find a used one at a yard sale or one for sale elsewhere and might be curious if it’s a good buy. Find out with this NordicTrack CX 938 Elliptical review.

We Love Home Gyms

The team at Garage Gym Reviews spends countless hours researching and testing all kinds of fitness equipment so you can build the perfect home gym. We use our collective knowledge as athletes, home gym owners, certified personal trainers (CPT), and CrossFit-L1 trainers to give you the bottom line on everything we test. Our team has tested all kinds of ellipticals including: rear-drive, center-drive, incline, and budget. There is nothing we haven’t seen. Unfortunately, we haven’t worked out on this machine, since it’s discontinued and hard to find. This CX 938 elliptical trainer review will combine our knowledge of exercise equipment, online specs, and reviews to let you know if the CX 938 is worth your time or if you should check out one of the many alternatives.  

Looking for an Alternative to NordicTrack CX 938 Elliptical?

Best Alternative to NordicTrack CX 938 Elliptical

NordicTrack Commercial 9.9 Elliptical

GGR Score: 3.6 starstarstarstarstar

Product Highlights

  • 7” smart HD Touchscreen
  • Water bottle holder, dual 2” digitally amplified speakers
  • AutoBreeze workout fan, oversized cushioned pedals
  • 22 levels of digital resistance and up to a 20% incline
  • Constructed with heavy-duty solid steel

Pros & Cons


  • Programming options
  • iFIT enabled
  • Quiet
  • Sturdy build
  • 30 pre-programmed workouts
  • Incline options


  • Stride length is small for a commercial elliptical
  • Requires a 4-year iFIT membership
  • Heavy

Bottom Line

Intended for commercial use, the Commercial 9.9 Elliptical is a sturdy treadmill that offers interactive programming through its required 4-year membership to iFIT.

If you’re looking for something to replace the CX 938, we recommend starting with the NordicTrack Commercial 9.9. It is the most affordable NordicTrack elliptical in their new line. It is more expensive than the CX 938 was, at $1,499, but you’ll get a much nicer machine. It has a 7-inch HD touchscreen, 22 digital resistance levels, and much simpler iFIT compatibility.

If that is out of your price range, we’ve reviewed a variety of ellipticals under $1,000.

A Quick Look at the NordicTrack CX 938 Elliptical

The CX 938 retailed for $899 when it was available. It featured a rear-drive flywheel and 10 levels of silent magnetic resistance (SMR). The machine had 10 workout programs built into the console, and, while the machine was also iFIT compatible, it wasn’t quite as seamless as it is now. The real standout feature was the adjustable stride length with a maximum 18-inch stride length.


  • Affordable 
  • 10 workout programs 
  • Adjustable stride length with 18-inch stride max
  • AutoBreeze cooling fan


  • 250-lb max user weight is below industry standard 
  • Complaints of complicated assembly
  • iFIT compatibility is complicated 

NordicTrack CX 938 Elliptical Specs

Footprint75” L x 23” W
Weight181 lbs 
User Weight capacity250 lbs
Type of resistanceSilent Magnetic Resistance (SMR) 
Resistance levels10 levels 
Display7” x 10” backlit display 
Stride length18” maximum with Stride Select adjustable stride
Workout Programs10 onboard (8 preset, 2 heart rate) + iFIT compatibility via CD or VCR
Heart Rate MonitorsContact grip sensors
Warranty1-year frame, motor, parts, and labor 

Key Features of the NordicTrack CX 938 Elliptical

The CX 938 elliptical trainer is a budget elliptical that lacks the many modern conveniences people are accustomed to now. The CX 938 stood out from other budget ellipticals with the Stride Select adjustable stride length. 

Footprint, Portability, and Durability

The CX 938 elliptical trainer has a large footprint, at 75 inches long and 28 inches wide. That is pretty standard for ellipticals; ellipticals are big machines. NordicTrack has included front-mounted transport wheels to make moving the machine easier, but it is pretty heavy at 181 pounds, so we wouldn’t recommend doing that often. 

Budget machines generally aren’t as durable as more expensive machines. The 250-pound user weight limit is lower than the industry standard of 350 pounds, which isn’t great. The one-year warranty on frame, motor, parts, and labor is longer than most budget machines, which makes us feel better about the CX 938’s durability. 


The maximum 18-inch stride length should accommodate most users. Shorter users will be able to shorten the stride length to make the machine more comfortable. Users taller than 6 feet might prefer something with a longer stride length, as we usually recommend at least a 20-inch stride length for people over 6 feet tall.

The CX 938 also features both stationary and moving handlebars. The stationary handlebars feature a contact-grip pulse sensor to check the user’s heart rate. The moving handlebars help you incorporate the upper body into your workout. 

Technology Benefits and Conveniences

This is a discontinued model, so it is lacking a lot of the modern conveniences customers are used to now. The CX 938 has a basic 7-inch by 10-inch display. The display console features a Training Zones bar which will indicate the type of training you are doing; performance, endurance, aerobic, fat burn, warm-up, or cool-down. The display will also display traditional workout stats like distance, pace, speed, resistance, and calories. There is also a carb counter, which will show the approximate grams of carbs you have burned. The console also features an integrated AutoBreeze cooling fan. This fan can adjust to go faster based on how hard you are exercising.

The elliptical trainer has iFIT compatibility but you’d have to purchase CDs and videocassettes from the iFIT website to use it, and these are no longer available (obviously!) since iFIT has been upgraded to be a streaming workout service. 

Final Verdict of Our NordicTrack CX 938 Elliptical Review

The CX 938 elliptical trainer was a budget pick for home users to get their cardio in while it was available. Users were often able to purchase it for as little as $500, making it a decent choice at the time. The CX 938 is difficult to find on the secondhand market, however, and honestly, we think you should skip it anyway. Do you really want a machine that has the ability to connect to a CD player or VCR in the year 2023? There are lots of newer budget machines you can get in a similar price range. 

NordicTrack CX 938 Elliptical Rating

NordicTrack CX 938 Elliptical

Learn about this affordable, now-discontinued elliptical machine with our NordicTrack CX 938 Elliptical review.

Product Currency: $

Product Price: 1499

Product In-Stock: InStock

Editor's Rating:

NordicTrack CX 938 Elliptical

Value – 4

Footprint and portability – 3

Durability – 3

Customizations – 4

Adjustability and ergonomics – 4

Conveniences – 2

Tech Capabilities – 2

Dynamic Programming – 2

NordicTrack CX 938 Elliptical FAQs

Is a NordicTrack elliptical worth it?

Yes, NordicTrack discontinued their cheaper ellipticals to introduce a newer line of high-quality machines. NordicTrack elliptical machines are not cheap, but if you can afford it you’ll get a great elliptical. 

How much does NordicTrack CX 938 weigh?

The NordicTrack CX 938 elliptical trainer weighs 181 pounds.

How much clearance do you need for a NordicTrack elliptical?

We couldn’t find how much clearance you need for the CX 938 elliptical specifically. A conservative estimate would be the height of the tallest user, plus 20 inches.

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