Schwinn IC4 vs Peloton: What You Should Know Before Choosing

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Quick Summary

Today, both the Peloton and the Schwinn IC4 are two of the best and most recognized indoor bikes on the market. Many indoor cycles on the market are very basic, and although they can still offer a great workout, they fall far behind bikes like the Peloton and IC4.

Features such as ergonomically designed handlebars and seats, high-quality LCD screens, dual-purpose pedals, and Bluetooth connectivity are only a few examples of many that set these bikes apart from their cheaper counterparts.

  • The Peloton bike is an excellent indoor training tool, and to be honest, it’s tough to find any negative points about it. Peloton has spent millions of dollars on Research and Development over the years, and it really shines through in all their products.
  • Then there’s the Schwinn IC4; it’s tough to go past Schwinn; they’ve been one of the industry’s most recognized brands for decades now. Every single piece of training equipment they produce is always of the highest quality. To me, the standout feature of Schwinn’s bikes is their drivetrains; they’re always incredibly smooth and quiet and provide the rider with a real sense of confidence, especially when pushing hard. 

Yes, they can be on the pricey side, but to be honest, the number of features and build quality you get is definitely worth every penny. 

peloton vs schwinn ic4

Using The Peloton App With The Schwinn IC4 

Downloading the Peloton app and then pairing it with your new Schwinn IC4 is very straightforward and requires limited fuss. The app will grant access to the whole plethora of live and recorded classes available on the Peloton app. In fact, Schwinn has already a great, detailed guide for this.

The experience is somewhat similar to Zwift, but in my opinion, the Peloton app seems to be much more immersive, which does make it one of the best apps out there. The app allows you to track several important data points, including heart rate and cadence, along with other vital tracking numbers.

The only significant data point that most users say they cannot track was their power output or “watts.” 

From what we can see by reading through the various group chats, many users have found a so-called “workaround,” which includes downloading the Kinetic app and then pairing it to the heart rate monitor. Once this step is completed, you can pair it to the Schwinn IC4 and finally go back in and open the Peloton app.

Detailed Comparison Of Peloton & Schwinn IC4 

Peloton Bike Peloton Bike
4.7

Maybe the most popular indoor cycle, and for a good reason. Excellent quality with an excellent app for beginners and experts. The only downside it that users cannot change resistance when using apps like Zwift etc.

Schwinn IC4 Bike Schwinn IC4 Bike
4.9

The Schwinn IC4 comes equipped with Bluetooth connectivity, allowing you to link to several apps such as Peloton® and Zwift®. The Schwinn really does offer excellent quality at a very affordable price.

There is no doubt that the Peloton and Schwinn IC4 are probably two of the best indoor bikes on the market today. In recent years, spin classes have become increasingly popular, and with the current pandemic, their popularity has continued to rise.

Although the Peloton and the Schwinn IC4 are at two different ends of the price spectrum, our goal was to compare these two bikes in terms of features.

Does sending more money make a difference? Or can you get a quality bike that is much less expensive?

Build Quality

Although the Schwinn IC3 was a long way off the Peloton in terms of build quality, the new Schwinn IC4 has undoubtedly made considerable improvements in this area. This does go to show that you can get excellent quality for a low price.

Space Saving

Both the Schwinn IC4 and the Peloton are very close to the 4 foot 2” measuring point. It’s a crucial factor to consider when buying any piece of gym equipment for your home or office.

Weight

Many people new to indoor riding probably might not be aware of just how significant a factor the weight of a bike can be, especially in terms of performance. 

The weight difference between the Schwinn IC4 and the Peloton is roughly about 35-pounds. This is significant because the harder you push the pedals, the more the bike will want to move around. So naturally, the heavier the stationary bike is, the more stable it will be when standing on the pedals.

The lighter Schwinn is excellent, though, especially when transporting it or moving it around the office or gym. 

Frame

Both of the bikes are made on high-quality steel that, from all reports, is durable and should last many years. 

Resistance

The resistance of indoor bikes has come a long way in recent years. In years gone by, the technology lagged, and many of the bikes were very loud and did not provide a smooth riding experience for the user. This has changed now, though.

The Schwinn IC4 has a heavier flywheel than the Peloton, and this dramatically increases the smoothness of the riding, and the noise produced is pretty much silent. It’s an excellent riding experience for less money.

Drivetrain

Nothing really to compare here, as both bikes use the traditional belt drive system. This is the best system because the system connects directly to the pedals making for an incredibly smooth pedaling stroke. This system is also great at mitigating noise, which most indoor bikes suffer from.

Screen Features

This is where the two bikes differ the most; the screen, or more importantly, what is streamed through the screen. The Schwinn IC4 offers users the traditional LCD screen and allows you to track important metrics such as heart rate, RPM, distance, time, cadence, calories burnt, and so on.

However, this is where the Peloton separates itself. The Peloton comes with Bluetooth connectivity allowing you to live-stream classes directly from their New York Headquarters. There is obviously an extra cost involved here, but it’s well worth the money. 

The bike screen on the Peloton can also swivel, making it pretty much fully adjustable and a good fit for a user of any body type.

IC4 Review 

The Schwinn IC4 is an excellent bike and comes supplied with Bluetooth connectivity, enabling you to link to various apps like Peloton and Zwift. 

The possibility to encounter some of the world’s most dependable cycling apps on a reliable and economical bike makes the Schwinn IC4 an attractive choice for novices to the market. 

The Schwinn IC4 is perfect for newcomers yet also offers experienced spinners a powerful workout. The amount of magnetic resistance levels possible makes it viable for riders of all levels to find their optimum threshold.

Although more expensive bikes are equipped with high-tech features, the Schwinn IC4 has not that many; However, that does not reduce its outstanding characteristics and functionality. 

The Schwinn IC4 offers premium quality at an affordable price point. 

Schwinn IC4 Bike Schwinn IC4 Bike
4.9

The Schwinn IC4 comes equipped with Bluetooth connectivity, allowing you to link to several apps such as Peloton® and Zwift®. The Schwinn really does offer excellent quality at a very affordable price.

Specs

  • The frame comes with a 10-year warranty.
  • Chainset and components have a 3-year warranty.
  • The Schwinn IC4 is 48.7” long and 21.2” wide, perfect for most home gyms. 

Features

  • The 3lb dumbbells included 
  • 40-pound drivetrain gives adjustability to all users
  • Connectivity to all your favorite apps such as Zwift
  • The resistance comes with over 100 adjustments allowing for ease of use
  • An ergonomically designed rack to secure your device

Pros & Cons

  • The Schwinn IC4 comes equipped with dual-purpose pedals allowing the user to ride in sneakers or cycling shoes.
  • Ergonomically designed handlebars perfect for those longer rides.
  • The saddle can be adjusted vertically and horizontally.
  • High-tech enabling you to track your workout data.
  • Workouts variation is insufficient due to no preset buttons being installed.
  • The bike does not come equipped with a fan.
  • The data displayed is very basic; however, in saying that, the LCD is very high-quality.

In my expert opinion, the Schwinn IC4 is an excellent bike overall, and the fact the bike is very affordable makes it perfect for those looking to dip their toes into the indoor cycling world.

As I mentioned earlier, although the IC4 does not come equipped with any preset workout buttons, it does not take anything away from the quality and value for the money of the bike. You can simply connect to Zwift or your preferred app and ride until your heart’s content.

Peloton Review 

The Peloton bike has several features that set it apart from other indoor bikes. When you think about Peloton, most people think of the app, but the cycle is actually an excellent machine.

The flywheel and belt drive are probably two of the most important features on any bike, so it’s no surprise to learn that the Pelton doesn’t let you down in this regard. The cycle also includes a 22” full touch screen with a quality sound system.

Turning on the power and logging in is made straightforward by utilizing the touchscreen. Some users have reported that if the wifi connection were lost, the screen would temporarily freeze; however, it did return to the previous screen relatively quickly. 

The resistance knob is placed in a strange position between the handlebars which certainly took many user’s time to get used to, and some riders even reported knocking it while riding; ouch! 

The seat and handlebars are second to none; they are fully adjustable, providing the rider with several different riding positions, and the seat is competition level comfortable. Being fully adjustable makes it ideal for families who may want to share the bike.

Another excellent feature that should not be overlooked is the wheels that make the bike very easy to move around your home gym or office, notwithstanding the bike’s 60kg weight. 

The saddle can easily be changed if you have a particular saddle you use. The pedals, however, are only compatible with Look cleats, meaning you will have to invest some money if you choose to use the pedals included. It’s not a deal-breaker, though, because the overall quality of the bike is simply outstanding.

The Peloton bike allows the user to track critical data points from their workouts, but the numbers can be off when compared to external devices such as Garmin or Wahoo. The algorithm used to calculate power is done by combining cadence and resistance. The majority of power meters give different measurements, and none of them are ever identical, so it’s not that big of an issue. 

Peloton Bike Peloton Bike
4.7

Maybe the most popular indoor cycle, and for a good reason. Excellent quality with an excellent app for beginners and experts. The only downside it that users cannot change resistance when using apps like Zwift etc.

Specs

  • The bike is 48” in length and 24” wide
  • The weight of the bike is 135lbs
  • LCD Screen size is 22” and is a full-touch screen
  • Magnetic flywheel resistance
  • Wifi connectivity

Features

  • Super nice quality high-tech LCD screen 22” 
  • Ergonomically designed frame and handlebars
  • Fully adjustable seat and handlebars
  • You change the seat very quickly for your own
  • Easy to use resistance knob’
  • Smooth magnetic resistance 

Pros & Cons

  • The entertainment value is such high quality it draws beginners in.
  • The Peloton bike comes fully equipped with Bluetooth connectivity. 
  • The bike is fully adjustable, making it straightforward to change between different users.
  • The bike is very pricey.
  • The Peloton bike will not change resistance when using apps like Zwift.
  • No estimated power measurement or data tracking.
  • It lacks other critical data and tracking points to.

Other Alternatives 

Bowflex C6

Wow, wow, wow; The Bowflex C6 is a standout when it comes to indoor cycling and getting the most out of your workouts. The design, construction, and thought put into the features are simply incredible. 

However, the bike is not perfect and has one or two cons, such as the monthly fees for the streaming apps and several other bikes offering similar features for a more affordable price. 

Related:
Bowflex C6 vs Schwinn IC4

The Bowflex C6 is fully adjustable and straightforward to set up in terms of streaming and getting ready for your workouts. The ergonomically designed frame, including the handlebars and seat, provides a very comfortable ride experience.

The Bowflex C6 comes equipped with a heart rate monitor with Bluetooth connectivity and offers the rider the opportunity to track their ride data accurately. 

When it comes down to the nitty-gritty, the Bowflex C6 is a well-thought-out indoor bike that provides the user with all the top-notch features you’d expect from a bike brand of this stature.

Bowflex C6 Bike Bowflex C6 Bike
4.9

An excellent alternative option to Peloton or other streaming bikes. A quiet magnetic resistance bike, proficient enough to link with the many available streaming devices such as Peloton® and Zwift®.

Echelon ex5s

Another excellent option when it comes to indoor bikes is the Echelon Smart Connect EX5. Priced at a little over $1400, it’s a little bit on the expensive side, but the good news is you can get it cheaper directly from the Echelon site.

The bike is excellent for those looking for a realistic and interactive riding experience, and with 32 levels of magnetic resistance, finding the correct difficulty level is a piece of cake. 

A standout feature is a saddle that is world-class competition level and offers the sort of comfort you’d expect from a brand like Echelon. Another well-thought-out feature is the adjustment knob for the magnetic resistance, which comes with superior indexing, making it easy to see and remember your previous ride setting.

The handlebars are ergonomically designed and are referred to as an “aero handlebar system.” With a nice mount that lets you attach your device securely, two water bottle holders, and precise build quality, this bike is well worth the money.

Echelon EX5-S Echelon EX5-S
4.4

New and improved stabilization handles and seat post adjustments including a competition seat with 6' lever-style adjustment, and a precision resistance motor are just a few of the exciting new features you only get with the EX5-S.

Nordictrack s22i

The NordicTrack bike brings an intelligent artistic and ergonomic design that makes this bike a real serious alternative. The frame itself moves in multiple ways that mimic riding outside on the road or riding up your favorite mountain pass.

Another outstanding feature is the ability for cycling instructors to change or modify your workouts by remote control. This is great because it lets you concentrate on the training itself instead of fiddling around with the control buttons.

Although the fan is pretty loud, it’s an excellent feature that any cyclist will appreciate, primarily through those summer workouts; on the other hand, the flywheel is very quiet and almost silent, to be honest. 

Unfortunately, users have reported that the software is a little bit glitchy, which can cause the screen to take a few seconds to recalibrate; not the best thing to happen during your workout. 

Let’s be honest here; overall, the NordicTrack is a bike for the serious athlete who wants to get the most out of their workouts. 

Nordictrack Commercial S22i Nordictrack Commercial S22i
4.7

22 inches Interactive HD Touchscreen Display streams on-demand iFit workouts directly to your equipment and provides easy stats tracking; Adjustable display mount allows for 360-degree screen rotation.


Verdict: Which Is Best For Me?

The bike that best suits you is always a difficult question because of the individual factors and circumstances that need to be considered. 

Factors such as how many times per week you intend to ride, your budget, the amount of space you have at home, the quality of your wifi, and your connectivity to apps are just a few. In this case, both bikes are excellent options and come from brands with a long history of building quality indoor training equipment. 

If push came to shove and I was forced to choose, then I would probably go with the 

Schwinn IC4 solely on looks. Both bikes offer the latest high-tech goodies, and there’s not much to differentiate them from each other. At the end of the day, it comes down to personal preference.

Brenton Barker

Brenton holds a Degree in Sports Coaching from the University of Delaware and was the former Head Advisor for the Japanese Government's Sports Science Institute.Brenton currently consults with several Professional Athletes and clients in Self- Accountability, Health, and Goal Orientation.