Sole F63 vs F80: Which is The Best For Your Needs?

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You’ve narrowed your treadmill decision down to the Sole F63 vs F80, but how do you decide? They’re both excellent machines that will help you stay active whether it’s too cold for outdoor running or walking and/or you can’t get to the gym. I’ll compare them here and you’ll see just how similar they really are.

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The Main Differences Between the Sole F63 and F80

Since the Sole F63 and F80 are from the same brand, there will be a lot of similarities, but let’s see how they differ. (Honestly, they’re not that different.)

  • The Sole F63 has a 3.0 HP motor, whereas the Sole F80 has a 3.5 HP motor.
  • The Sole F63 supports users up to 325 pounds, whereas the F80 supports up to 375 pounds.
  • The Sole F63 has a three-year warranty on the deck, electronics, and parts, and one-year warranty labor, whereas the F80 comes with a lifetime warranty on the deck, a five-year warranty on electronics and parts, and a two-year warranty on labor. (Both models have a lifetime warranty on the frame and motor.)
  • The Sole F63 has a 6.5-inch LCD display, whereas the F80 has a nine-inch LCD display (both white back-lit).
  • The Sole F63 has a 20-inch wide running area, whereas the F80 has a 22-inch wide running area.

What to Look for in a Treadmill

Sole F63 vs F80

With all the treadmills on the market, where do you begin? Consider these:

  • Length of the deck: Do you have long legs and a long stride? You may want extra space on the belt. 
  • What safety features does it have?
  • Incline capabilities: Do you like hiking up mountains, or will you be fine with a 10 to 12 percent incline?
  • Warranty on frame, parts, labor, and motor
  • Quality of customer service: Check around for recent reviews of customer service to see how the company is doing. How are wait times when you call? Does the company go above and beyond to help their customers?
  • Delivery delays: Are you likely to get your treadmill in two days or two months? 
  • Can it fold up? If you have a designated space in your home for a treadmill, this is less of an issue, but if space is tight and you want to easily move your treadmill out of the way when it’s not in use, this is something you won’t want to forget to consider.
  • Is there a fan to keep you cool?
  • Are there any preset programs?
  • Does it monitor your heart rate? How?   
  • Is it tied in with a specific fitness ecosystem (iFit, Peloton, etc.)? Do you want it to be? 
  • Can it hold a tablet/phone? Bottle of water? How convenient does each machine make it to use your tablet and store your water?
  • Does it have speakers? Will you want to play music through speakers on your treadmill, or are you fine with another setup?
  • Return policy: How long will you have to decide if you have the right treadmill for you? Will there be a restocking fee? 
  • How easy is it on your joints? 

The Sole F63

The Sole F63 is an excellent machine, whether you’re planning to walk or already love to run. It’s several publications’ pick for “Best in Its Price Range.”

Sole F63

Features

Here’s what you can expect from the F63:

  • A USB port so you can charge your phone or tablet while you walk or run.
  • Bluetooth speakers
  • Ability to quickly and easily transfer workout data to smart device with Bluetooth
  • Ability to transfer data to Fitbit, Record, MapMyRun, or Apple Health or download information from the Sole app
  • 3.0 HP motor
  • 20-inch x 60-inch running surface
  • Incline up to 15 percent
  • The Cushion Flex Whisper Deck protects your joints and reduces impact by 40 percent
  • Fan
  • Integrated tablet holder
  • Ability to adjust settings on the handlebars
  • Folds up using the Easy Assist Folding Deck Design, which means you can release the deck, step away, and it will fall into place gradually, so you won’t have to struggle with heavy equipment and risk injury
  • Strong steel frame
  • Speeds up to 12.0 MPH
  • Doesn’t vibrate as you run, thanks to flywheels
  • Six standard programs
  • Two custom programs
  • Two heart programs
  • Large stop switch for safety
  • Bright blue display
  • Heart rate monitoring via pulse grips or chest strap (included)
  • Two-ply belt
  • Designed to minimize static for a longer lifespan
  • Monitors speed, distance, incline, time, calories, pulse, and pace as you work out

 Pros

  • Folds up for easy storage and more space when you need it
  • Works with smart devices for seamless workout data tracking
  • Great for your joints
  • A lower price than the F80 (under $2000.00)
  • Good warranty (especially for the frame and motor—lifetime!)
  • There’s a fan and the screen allows you track your distance, heart rate, pace, speed, and more
  • Sending your data to your smart devices means you can track your progress over time, not just during a workout
  • Free shipping from the Sole site

 Cons

  • Smaller screen than the Sole F80.
  • Can’t support quite as much weight as the F80 (325 lbs)
  • Some users may prefer more than a 15 percent incline
  • You’ll need a separate device if you want to follow a trainer, outside of the pre-programmed workouts
  • There are less expensive treadmills on the market with similar features
  • Fans aren’t particularly strong
  • If your legs are pretty long, you may have to walk or jog so far back on the belt, you won’t be able to reach the handrails well enough to grab on when you need to
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Sole F63 Reviews

As expected, the Sole F63 has high ratings, an average of 4.5 stars on the Sole Treadmills site and 4.3 at Dick’s Sporting Goods. It only earned 3.6 stars on Amazon, but it’s worth noting that most of the reviews are from 2010 there and the treadmill has been updated since then.

At Sole, reviewers tend to be thrilled with the number of features they get and applaud the customer service (always important when purchasing expensive fitness equipment). One reported a squeaky motor after six months.

Reviewers at Dick’s Sporting Goods tend to like the amount of running space they get (though there was one report of someone hitting the plastic guard in front), how stable the machine feels, and how easy it is to fold up and down. However, moving the box it’s in and then putting it together can prove to be a tough job. Grab a friend to help you get it in the door and put it together.

A few reviewers reported an error message that Sole was able to fix in some cases. In other cases, the parts weren’t covered under warranty and customers had to either spend hundreds on a repair or purchase a new treadmill.

Though the Amazon reviews are older, it’s worth mentioning the fact that most people seemed happy with their F63 and enjoyed the features (some pointed out that the machine seemed stable), but putting it together was a daunting chore.

Some had to take advantage of the warranty after a short period of time but seemed satisfied with the customer service.

The Sole F80

The Sole F80 Treadmill is another award-winner and it’s incredibly similar to the F63.

Sole F80

Features

Here’s what you get:

  • USB port so you can charge your phone or tablet while you walk or run
  • Bluetooth speakers
  • Allows users to transfer workout data to a smart device with Bluetooth
  • Ability to transfer data to Fitbit, Record, MapMyRun, or Apple Health or download information from the Sole app
  • 3.5 HP motor
  • Incline up to 15 percent
  • The Cushion Flex Whisper Deck helps protect joints and reduces impact by 40 percent
  • Fan
  • Integrated tablet holder 
  • Ability to adjust settings on the handlebars
  • Folds up using the Easy Assist Folding Deck Design, which means you can release the deck, step away, and it will fall into place gradually, so you won’t have to struggle with heavy equipment and risk injury
  • Steel frame that’s under warranty for life
  • Speeds from 1.0 to 12.0 MPH
  • Flywheels ensure that you get a smoother ride, without the vibrations some treadmills have
  • Six standard programs
  • Two custom programs
  • Two heart programs
  • Large stop switch for safety
  • Console has a bright display that shows speed, distance, incline, time, calories, pulse, and pace
  • Heart rate monitoring via pulse grips or chest strap (included)
  • Two-ply belt
  • Designed to minimize static, which leads to a longer lifespan

Pros

  • Larger screen
  • Can support more weight than the F63 (375 lbs)
  • Folds up for easy storage and more space
  • Longer warranty on parts and labor than the F63’s
  • It Will keep you cool and let you track your distance, heart rate, pace, speed, and more
  • Being able to send data to your smart devices means you can track your progress over time—not just during a workout
  • Free shipping from the Sole site

 Cons

  • Costs more without offering a substantial number of improvements over the F63
  • Heavier machine than the F63
  • Other than the few built-in programs, you’ll be on your own to create the workouts you want to do unless you bring a tablet or phone and follow along with a trainer on an app
  • Fan isn’t especially strong
  • If you have long legs, you may have to walk so far back on the belt to avoid stepping on the front cover, reaching the handrails feels like a stretch
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Sole F80 Reviews

The Sole F80 also has outstanding reviews, with a 4.5 at the Sole site and a 4.3 at Dick’s Sporting Goods.

Reviewers at Sole mentioned the treadmill’s wonderful quality, reliability, stability, quality, and belt length. Some had trouble putting theirs together, however, and one user reported that their heart monitor (on the handles) wasn’t accurate, though that seems to be common with handlebar heart rate monitors on fitness equipment; a chest strap will generally be more reliable.

Reviewers at Dick’s Sporting Goods loved the folding feature, the running surface, motor quality, and preset programs, though some complained about the shock absorption and how weak the fan was, and one user said it stopped working after two uses and the store wouldn’t take it back (they didn’t indicate whether they called Sole for help, however).

Some reviewers did complain about Sole’s customer service when they called because something was wrong with their machine. Check out how Sole F80 compares to NordicTrack 1750 here.

Comparison at a Glance

If that looks like a lot of information to digest at once, here’s the quick comparison at a glance:

  Sole F63 Sole F80
Dimensions 80”L x 33”W x 60”H 80”L x 33”W x 58”H
Weight 254 lbs 278 lbs
Screen size 6.5” 9”
Warranty Lifetime on frame and motor, 3 years on parts and electronics, and 1 year on labor Lifetime on frame and motor, 5 years on parts and electronics, and 2 years on labor
Bluetooth speakers Yes Yes
Fan Yes Yes
Weight supported 325 lbs 375 lbs
Speed Up to 12 MPH (3.0 horsepower) Up to 12 MPH (3.5 horsepower)
Incline Up to 15% Up to  15%
Preset programs 6 standard, 2 custom, 2 heart rate 6 standard, 2 custom, 2 heart rate
USB port? Yes Yes
Tablet holder? Yes Yes
Fold up? Yes Yes
Shock-absorbing/cushioning? Yes, up to 40% easier on joints Yes, up to 40% easier on joints
Displayed while you exercise Speed, distance, incline, time, calories, pulse, pace Speed, distance, incline, time, calories, pulse, pace
Running surface 20”  x 60” 22” x 60”
Price Under $2000.00 Over $2500.00 when not on sale

Frequently Asked Questions

Let’s hop right into a few quick answers:

Question: What is the difference between Sole F63 and F80?

Answer: Not a whole lot. With the F80, you’ll get a slightly bigger screen, a longer warranty, and a couple of extra inches on the running area. 

Question: Is the Sole F63 good for running?

Answer: Absolutely. In fact, it’s won awards claiming it’s one of the best options in its price range. With speeds up to 12 MPH and special features that cut down on impact and vibration of the machine, there’s a good chance you’ll love running on it.

Question: Is Sole better than NordicTrack?

Answer: Maybe. It depends on what you’re looking for. Some NordicTrack machines have extra features you won’t find on a Sole and NordicTrack allows you to access iFit on the screen (with subscription). As far as the machines themselves go, they’re both good options.

Question: Is Sole a good brand?

Answer: Absolutely, one of the best.

Question: What is the best treadmill for the money?

Answer: See some of my top picks here.

Question: How long do Sole treadmills last?

Answer: They’re built to last, so you can expect to get at least the average treadmill life of seven to 12 years out of it. 

Question: What year did Sole F63 come out?

Answer: 2009

Question: What year did Sole F80 come out?

Answer: 2009

Question: Is Sole F80 a good treadmill?

Answer: Yes, one of the best on the market in its price range, though it may not be worth the price difference between it and the F63. It has a variety of features and Sole seems to have thought of everything. 

The Verdict: F63 or F80?

The Sole F63 wins. There aren’t enough differences to justify the extra $1000.00 for the F80 treadmill. You probably won’t miss two extra inches of width on the running surface and I don’t feel that the F80’s bigger screen makes it worth the extra cost.

One thing you might miss is the warranty extension on the F80’s electronics (extra two years), parts (extra two years), and labor (extra 1 year), and that could push the F80 into “worth it” territory. 

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Final Thoughts

You can’t go wrong with the Sole F63 or F80. If you want a treadmill with bells and whistles, joint protection, and the ability to enjoy shows, workout apps, music, or podcasts (thanks to a tablet holder and Bluetooth speakers), look no further.

How To Build A Home Gym On A Budget

 

(Even if you have small or limited space!)

 

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