The Universal Power-Pak 445’s are a set of adjustable dumbbells with weights ranging from 4 to 45 lbs, in 5 lb increments. Compared to the Bowflex 552’s this is a little less than the 52.5 lbs of weight they offer, but the Universal set still offers a few important advantages.
This product article takes a closer look at their design, compares them with the Bowflex set, and even provides a summary of the thoughts being expressed in the customer reviews.
If you are thinking about setting up your own home gym, a crucial part of any weight training setup is a good quality set of dumbbells.
With conventional fixed weight dumbbells, the problem comes when you need to store a variety of different weights. Even if you want to warm up with 10 lbs and workout with 30 lbs, that’s still 10 separate dumbbells (5 pairs), accounting for a 5 lb increase each set.
There’s also the problem of keeping larger sets of dumbbells organised. Unless you have a storage rack, there’s a good chance that the dumbbells will get mixed up during the course of your workout.
This leads to less time spent working out and less time resting between sets, which is why the Universal Power-Pak 445 adjustable dumbbells have proved so popular.
A large dial at the end of each dumbbell makes it quick and easy to change the weight whenever you need to, without having to worry about spinlock collars and stacks of weight plates.
Simply by turning the dial you can go from lifting 5 lbs of weight, all the way up to 45 lbs.
As well as making your workouts more efficient, it’s also much easier to keep up with popular training programs, such as P90X or Focus T25.
To prevent you having to pick the weight up off the floor before you start each exercise, the Universal Power-Pak 445’s are also supplied with a useful storage rack.
Universal Power-Pak 445 – Features Summary
- Each dumbbell adjusts from 4 to 45 pounds, in 5 pound increments, allowing you to rapidly switch from one exercise to the next
- Great space and money saver
- The Universal Power Pak replaces 9 sets or 18 individual dumbbells
- Includes an ergonomically designed dumbbell stand to neatly store your dumbbells
- Durable thermoplastic rubber handle for a comfortable non-slip grip
- Workout guide
- Exercises Available: 30+
- Weight Settings: 9
- Weight Settings in pounds: 4, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40 and 45
Whether you want to build a workout entirely around dumbbells, or use them for isolation exercises after your main compound lifts, they remain one of the most versatile pieces of fitness equipment available.
When used on their own, the Universal Power-Pak 445’s can be used for a variety of upper and lower body exercises.
You can even combine them with a Bosu, swiss ball, or weights bench for an even wider range of workout options.
The following list is just a few of the 30+ exercises that are possible when combined with a simple adjustable weights bench:
- Abs – Weighted crunches
- Triceps – Overhead extensions, skull crushers, kickbacks
- Biceps – Hammer curls, concentration curls, preacher curls
- Quads – Lunges, squats
- Hamstrings – Squats, stiff-legged deadlifts
- Shoulders – Shoulder press, side lateral raises, upright rows
- Back – Bent over rows, shrugs, pullovers, Kroc rows
- Chest – Dumbbell fly, incline press, flat bench press
Comparison with the Bowflex 552’s
Whenever you take a look at any set of adjustable dumbbells, it’s difficult not to compare them to the SelectTech sets from Bowflex.
The closest comparison is between the Universal Power-Pak 445’s and the Bowflex SelectTech 552’s, based on both cost and maximum weight per dumbbell.
Although the Bowflex dumbbells do have an increased maximum weight of 52.5 lbs, compared to 45 lbs for the Universal set, there is an additional cost of close to $100.
Despite their heavier weight, the Bowflex dumbbells aren’t supplied with a stand. A stand is available to buy separately, although this will usually set you back an additional $130.
In terms of comparing the quality, it’s best to do this across a wide selection of customers who have used the weights.
While we take a closer look at customer reviews in the next section, it’s worth bearing in mind that the percentage of 5 star reviews for the Bowflex set was only fractionally higher than for the Universal set.
To find out whether the lower price meant a lower standard of quality, we took a look at the customer reviews for the Universal Power-Pak 445 dumbbells.
While they don’t have as many as the Bowflex 552’s, the average rating is still equally as high.
With well over 100 of the 5 star rated reviews to read through alone, we’ve collected some of the most frequently mentioned pros and cons and put them together in one easy to read list.
I highly recommend this product if you are looking to maximize your home workouts. It is a great value especially with the stand included. It does the job well and looks good in your home. – M + O, Amazon Verified Purchase
- High quality stand provided to save having to pick the weights off the floor each set
- Hexagonal shaped weight plates prevent any rolling while keeping the weight evenly distributed
- Quick adjustability makes them ideal for workout programs such as P90X, Body Beast, and Focus T25
- Saves having to store racks of separate dumbbells
- Coated handles protect your hands and improve your grip
- Lower priced than the Bowflex 552’s
- Durable coating to the weight plates to prevent scratches
- Some reviews report the weight plates are not tight enough to the bar when they workout, causing small shifts in their position
- Occasional cracks in the plastic
Although these two negative points are important to bear in mind, these were only brought up in a very small handful of reviews.
It was difficult for us to find reviews under 4 stars on any shopping or review site, with the vast majority of customers rating these weights at the full 5 stars.