The Sole B94 vs The Schwinn 170 – Which Upright Makes More Sense?

The B94 is one of 2 upright models you’ll find on Sole’s lineup and personally, I think it’s one of the best overall bikes in its class.

With the B94 you get a heavy flywheel, a heavy-duty frame, and a great warranty. It also comes with a fully-adjustable seat and the bonus of an included chest strap.

On the other hand, Schwinn’s 170 is one of the most popular home upright bikes on the market.

With 29 workouts, 25 levels of resistance, and the famous Schwinn name on its side, it’s pretty easy to see why. Not to mention the fact that the 170 is also very affordable.

So, the Sole B94 or the Schwinn 170 – which bike is the better buy?

Well, that’s what we’re here to help you figure out.

In this article, I’ll compare these 2 impressive upright bikes head-to-head so you can see how they really stack up. We’re talking performance specs, features, warranties…the whole shebang.

After reading, you’ll know which bikes makes more sense for your home.

Off we go.

Sole B94Schwinn 170
Resistance20 lb flywheel
20 levels of magnetic resistance
13 lb flywheel
25 levels of magnetic resistance
Frame123 lb assembled weight
300 lb weight capacity
63 lb
300 lb weight capacity
Lifetime frame
3 year parts/electronics
1 year labor
10 year frame
2 year parts
1 year electronics
90 day labor
Features9" LCD console
10 workout programs
Bluetooth speakers/app compatibility
USB charging port
Included chest strap
Fully adjustable seat
DualTrack LCD console
29 workout programs
Bluetooth compatible
Chest strap compatible
USB charging port
Fully adjustable seat

The Sole B94 vs The Schwinn 170

I should confess- I’m a huge Sole fan.

I think Sole is one of, if not the, best overall home fitness brands around today.

There, I said it.

And no, I don’t secretly work for them or anything, it’s just that Sole machines are easy to use and well-built for their respective price ranges.

Plus they come with awesome warranties, but more on that in a bit.

Schwinn is also a good brand, especially for folks working with a smaller budget. For their price range, Schwinn bikes are easily some of the best options around.

And in many cases, probably the best option.

And to be fair, Schwinn also offers great warranties.

The B94 is Sole’s most affordable upright bike, while the 170 is Schwinn’s most expensive upright.

Speaking of uprights, we don’t see much of these bikes anymore, what with the surge in the popularity of spin bikes and everything.

But good ol’ fashioned uprights are still around and they can still make a nice option for a home gym.


Let’s start this battle off with a comparison of each bikes’ resistance system.

Now, upright bikes aren’t necessarily designed for the intense workouts elite indoor cycles can offer, but that doesn’t mean a quality upright isn’t capable of kicking your butt.

It all boils down to how much muscle it’s packing…or in other words, its resistance system.

The B94 comes with a 20 lb flywheel and 20 levels of magnetic resistance.

Twenty pounds isn’t especially impressive for a spin bike, but for an upright bike (especially one under $1000), it’s considered pretty heavy.

Having a heavy flywheel is beneficial because the extra weight builds more momentum as it spins, which makes for a smoother feel during your workouts.

Heavier flywheels also tend to provide a little more overall resistance.

And 20 levels of resistance is pretty good too. I would argue having more resistance levels is beneficial because it gives you more control over the intensity.

More resistance levels means you can make smaller adjustments to the intensity, but it doesn’t necessarily mean more overall resistance.

The Schwinn 170 comes with a 13 lb flywheel, which is considerably lighter than the one found on the B94, but it also comes with 25 resistance levels, which is more than the B94 offers.

So, you should expect a smoother feel on the B94 (with the heavier flywheel), but the 170 gives you more control over that intensity (25 levels vs 20).

Personally, I think the heavier flywheel is a bigger advantage than the 5 extra resistance levels, so I would give the resistance category to the B94.


Resistance is important, but so is the size and feel of the frame.

By that, I really mean how stable or heavy-duty the bike feels.

When we purchase home exercise equipment, we want that equipment to feel as much like the equipment we’ve used at gyms before to feel.

Home equipment (most anyway) feels notably different for several reasons, but one of the biggest ones is that home equipment is usually a lot less heavy-duty.

Which makes sense of course, because home units aren’t expected to withstand hours of daily use from multiple users, day in and day out.

Anyway, having a heavier-duty bike is a good thing because it’ll feel more secure during workouts.

I like to get an idea of how heavy-duty a bike will feel by looking at the assembled weight and the weight capacity- seeing higher numbers in each spec is a good sign that the bike will feel more stable.

Especially the assembled weight because that’s literally how heavy the bike is.

With all of that in mind, the B94 comes with an assembled weight of 123 lb and a weight limit of 300 lb.

And Schwinn’s 170 comes with an assembled weight of about 63 lb and the same 300 lb weight limit.

So, I think it’s pretty safe to say the B94 is significantly heavier-duty than the 170, considering it literally weighs almost 2x as much.

Even though they both come with the same weight limit.

And keep in mind, the flywheel on the B94 is only 7 lb heavier, so the rest of that weight is from the bulk of the frame.

In terms of size, the B94 is about 2″ wider and about 5″ longer than the 170, so it takes up a bit more floor space.

But overall, the B94 is much heavier-duty than the 170.


Moving on, let’s talk warranties.

I think a good warranty says a lot about the overall quality of a bike. I mean seriously, brands aren’t going to back bikes they know suck with long guarantees.

These brands aren’t dumb and they don’t want to spend money.

Anyway, Sole backs their B94 with the following residential warranty:

  • Lifetime frame
  • 3 year parts/electronics
  • 1 year labor

And Schwinn offers the following warranty on their 170:

  • 10 year frame
  • 2 year parts
  • 1 year electronics
  • 90 day labor

Ok, looking at these 2 warranties beside each other, it’s pretty easy to see that Sole’s guarantee is better. You can’t beat a lifetime  frame guarantee and 3 years is generous on parts for that price range.

That said, Schwinn’s 10 year frame warranty is very strong for that price range, as is the 2 years on parts.

90 days on labor is low, but for the 170’s price range, any labor warranty at all is a pretty nice surprise.

Overall, I would say both bikes come with solid warranties, but in a head-to-head comparison the B94 easily wins.


That about does it for the performance side of things, so let’s move to the additional features each bike has to offer. Let’s start with the B94.

The B94 comes with a 9″ LCD console. It’s pretty basic, but it’s large enough to see all your workout stats at the same time.

The console comes with 10 total workout programs to choose from, including 2 custom and 2 heart rate guided programs.

The B94 is compatible with chest strap heart rate monitors and Sole even includes one with purchase.

This bike is also bluetooth compatible with some fitness apps and comes with built-in bluetooth speakers.

Additional features include a fully-adjustable seat, built-in cooling fan, USB charging port, a tablet holder, and dual water bottle holders.

The Schwinn 170 comes with a dual track, LCD console, meaning the screen is broke up into 2 smaller screens. Between the 2 screens you can see all workout data at the same time.

The 170 comes with 29 built-in workout programs, which is a ton for any exercise bike. So, if you like having a lot of exercise options, that’s something you might really like.

This bike is also bluetooth compatible with popular fitness apps and compatible with chest strap heart rate monitors (uncoded Polar).

Additional features include a fully adjustable seat, built-in speakers, 3 speed fan, and a water bottle holder.

Overall, both bikes come with nice features like bluetooth and heart rate monitoring, but when it comes to workouts the 170 definitely comes out on top.


I mentioned briefly at the beginning that the B94 is more expensive than the 170, but let’s get a little more specific.

At the time of writing this, these bikes cost the following:

Sole B94: $799.99

Schwinn 170: $549

Please keep in mind that these prices might vary a little depending on any promotions or based on where you purchase ’em, but generally speaking, the B94 costs about $250 more.

Both bikes are well under $1000, so I’d put bikes in the “budget friendly” category, but the 170 is quite a bit budget friendlier.

Other Considerations

I save this area for any other tidbits of wisdom I want to include before wrapping things up.  In this case, I don’t have that much else to thrown in here.

I do want to say that the 170 is very popular and highly rated by users.

The B94 is too, but it doesn’t have the same level of recognition that the 170 has.

Also, Schwinn’s customer service doesn’t have a great reputation, but it’s not nearly as infamous as NordicTrack’s.

Sole’s customer service reputation is pretty neutral I think – not especially positive, but not that negative either.

Final Thoughts

Ok, I think it’s about time to wrap this up.

I think both of these upright bikes are at the top of their game and both could easily be great additions to any home gym.

In terms of performance, the B94 wins pretty easily. Its flywheel is quite a bit heavier and it’s a lot heavier duty when it comes to the frame.

When it comes to console features, the 170 comes with a lot more built-in workouts, but the B94 comes with an included chest strap and bluetooth speakers.

The B94’s warranty is also better than the 170’s, but both are generous for budget bikes.

Overall, Sole’s B94 is the superior upright, but is it worth the extra cash?

If you’re looking for a heavier-duty bike that can handle more strenuous use (or multiple users), I’d say most definitely.

But if you’re looking for an affordable model that can provide comfortable, light-duty workouts, then I could see saving the extra money and going with the 170.

All things considered though, I would say yes, the B94 is worth the extra cash… but the 170 is still about as good as it gets for $500.



One Thought to “The Sole B94 vs The Schwinn 170 – Which Upright Makes More Sense?”

  1. David

    I wasn’t able to get the arrow keys to get to functions but holding down stop and start for 10 secs reset the machine. Thanks so much! WOW!! worked like a charm! your awesome !! Thanks

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