We’ve combed the web seeking Saris H3 reviews and information, summarizing our findings so you can learn everything worth knowing about this very popular smart trainerIf you decide to purchase the Saris H3, please consider doing so through the shopping links at the bottom of this post, as this will help support Zwift Insider. 

Wisconsin-based Saris announced the H3 late August 2019, and it may be the most exciting new trainer of the year. Compared to the previous version (H2) the H3 is quieter, more accurate, and fixes some overheating issues. Significant upgrades: and it retails for $200 less than the H2!

With a solid build and a price that undercuts the competition, this trainer should appeal to anyone looking to upgrade to a direct drive experience.

But it’s not perfect, and we may still be waiting on some firmware updates to give it polished (see below for more on this).

QUICK QUOTES

Ray at DC Rainmaker says: 

… the cadence algorithms need work any time significant power shifts are applied… But it is quieter than most other trainers, so I think for now it’ll hold it’s own.

Tariq at SmartBikeTrainers says:

I love the design of the H3. It’s a well-built machine and looks solid. However, Saris really need to address these accuracy issues.

KEY SPECS

  • Accuracy: + / – 2%
  • Maximum Grade: 20%
  • Maximum Power Output: 2000W
  • Flywheel Weight: 20 lb
  • 8.5” L x 18.5” W x 19.5” H (legs closed),  31” L x 18.5” W x 19.5” H (legs open)
  • Weight: 47 lb
  • Hub Types: 130/135mm QR, 12×142, and 12×148. Thru Axle Adapters included.
  • Cadence included
  • Cassette not included
  • Maximum weight (rider and bike): 300 lbs.

PROS & CONS

The Good:

  • Low price
  • Very quiet
  • Realistic flywheel feel

The Bad:

  • Power and cadence accuracy concerns
  • Bulky, may not fit all frames

VIDEO REVIEWS

We’ve taken a look at the best Saris H3 review videos and summarized them for quick digestion.

SHANE MILLER

  • Power accuracy needs improvement on SIM hill climbs and sprints (reading low)
  • Cadence needs work
  • Thru-axle clearance is a problem
  • Saris Mobile App needs polish

SMARTBIKETRAINERS

  • Solid build, good feel
  • Power accuracy: Overmeasured power by ~10% at high flywheel speeds.
  • Built-in cadence measures 2-3RPM low
  • Very quiet

CONCLUSIONS

The H3 is a definite improvement over the H2, and at a $999 it’s a value that may be difficult to beat. While slightly louder than the KICKR and Neo, it’s still quieter than your fan.

Clearly, there are/were some accuracy problems with power and cadence in the initial firmware release, which (sadly) isn’t surprising given our experience with new trainers in the past. Saris released new firmware Oct 29, 2019 which addressed cadence and power, so hopefully these issues are resolved.

In the end, if the cadence and power accuracy problems get fixed, the H3 will be the trainer to beat at a price point well below the competition.