When it comes to high-end home gym experiences, there are teams that clearly stand out from the rest: Tonal and Mirror. These are two of the best examples of wall-mounted gym technology designed to give you a complete workout experience almost anywhere in your home.
How can you get a solid workout with a wall mounted rig? These are smart home gyms based on large wall-mounted touchscreens that help guide you through exercises, practice fitness, attend fitness classes, and much more. You don’t need extra home gym equipment, stationary bikes, or anything else to get a decent workout. All you need is the panel, the included accessories, and a couple of floor pads. However, while both Tonal and Mirror take this approach, these home gyms have a few key differences. Here’s which one best suits your training goals.
The design of Tonal (51 inches tall and 22 inches wide) and Mirror (52 inches tall and 22 inches wide) are basically the same. They are large touchscreens with sensors that you can safely mount on a wall in the corner of your home. Note: There must be enough space to exercise around you and the floor must be able to take a beating safely when you exercise).
However, upon closer inspection, several important design differences emerge. The Tonal panel is bigger, bulkier and heavier. As we discussed in our Tonal review, it’s made with sturdy sides that can support training bars in various positions to set up resistance training, connected training benches, and more.
The Mirror, meanwhile, is a slim, beautiful model, focused on looking like, well, a mirror. The team uses touchscreen options, training tools, and sensors similar to Tonal’s, but in a more compact package. That design element comes in handy if you’re short on space. It’s easier to set up too, but it doesn’t have the same comprehensive training versatility as Tonal.
We awarded this category to Tonal for a more robust design.
Let’s see the trainings that each model offers! Integrated guides are one of the biggest benefits for each product. They offer large, clear guides for all movements and help control your form to avoid mistakes that could cause injury or prevent gains. Both allow you to create a custom profile based on the type of workouts you want. Both units also feature a library of thousands of different workouts.
There are a couple of key differences that crop up. Tonal cares more about form and progression than broadcasting live workouts. Mirror has frequent live events and encourages the social aspect of workouts.
While both panels support a wide variety of workouts, Tonal, and its impressive array of accessories, is clearly more focused on strength training, with its weights and resistance, than the Mirror. You can view the 200+ strength training movements with the tonal supports in multiple settings, from barbell presses and deadlifts to resistance-based bicep curls and squats. It’s an impressive lineup, especially if you want to replicate an entire home gym without taking up too much space.
Mirror, on the other hand, does not focus on strength training but rather on cardio and endurance. There are no additional features that can mimic weights other than an optional accessory. Mirror’s featured workouts include boxing, cardio dance, Pilates, meditation, and ballet. If a workout requires props, like a kettlebell session, you’ll need to bring your own and let Mirror know you have it. The way you support these workouts is fun and effective, but it’s not a panel for building a lot of muscle.
This category is a tie, because workouts vary a lot. If you are looking to build strength, Tonal is the best option. If you want to tone up and do more cardio, the Mirror is a better fit.
Both panels have smart features that monitor your form and give you goals or progression scores to help you stay on track. Touchscreens can accurately track workout times and stages, as well as set robust schedules for your activities.
However, Tonal goes much further with smart tracking for those who love data. Smart handles and smart bars track your reps. A “digital weight” system can automatically increase resistance as you get stronger, ensuring you’re always getting better. The Tonal provides a large number of custom training reports with graphs and percentages. It takes a huge investment of time to set it up, but you get a lot of training data in return and you never have to worry if you’re choosing the right weight.
Mirror is easier to use, hands down. However, access to smart training data is more limited unless you opt for the “smart weights” dumbbell accessory. Mirror is more about what’s on the screen, in the moment, as you move. The data focuses on endurance stats like how much time is left in exercise and time improvement, along with some basic smart recommendations for classes you might like. There’s a more social factor too, with the Mirror panel making it clear when you’re doing the same workouts with the rest of the class. You even have options to share images and have the feeling of being in a group at home. Find out more from our Mirror review here.
We give Tonal this category for all the detailed data it offers.
Pricing and availability
You can buy both Tonal and Mirror online right now, but the packages they offer differ once again.
Tonal offers a $ 2,995 package for the basic home gym panel, plus shipping and installation fees that are posted as separate payments. Then there’s the $ 495 Smart Accessories Bundle, which is pretty much a required purchase to get all of Tonal’s unique strength training benefits. That brings the total to more than $ 3,500.
Mirror offers several packages, depending on the accessories. The basic package currently retails for $ 1,495 and includes only the Mirror panel with its basic configuration components. For $ 100 more, you get a variety of smart fitness monitor accessories, as well as a collection of Lululemon equipment for various exercises. Pay $ 100 more than that and Mirror adds a set of pesos. Again, accessories aren’t that important to Mirror’s approach to body-based workouts, but you can pay more to unlock more strength training options. Still, Mirror is much less expensive than Tonal.
Let’s not forget the membership fees. None of the home gym dashboards really work without a membership to access content and all smart features. Mirror specifically requires it, and while Tonal doesn’t make it all that obvious, there’s little point in investing in either mirror unless you also subscribe to the service. Mirror services cost $ 39 per month for up to six different profiles. Tonal’s service costs $ 49 per month.
This category goes for Mirror, as it is clearly the more affordable option of the two.
Tonal will provide you with a better workout, especially if you are interested in building muscle or charting clear progress. Mirror is a more social option with lots of live events and lots of ways to break a sweat with bodyweight exercises. However, there is relatively little focus on strength training. Despite their superficial similarities, these are very different types of home gym technology. For less than half the cost, Mirror is an easier entry point, but those who want serious results may be happier with Tonal, even at the high entry price.
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