Please delete my previous feedback, I mistakenly clicked 4-stars, not 5-stars!
I've used, owned and considered all premium barbells in the $400-700 range before purchasing the AB Elite SS Powerbar. When comparing specs against other top players of the game (Rogue, Kabuki, Lu Xiao Jun (newcomer), REP SS Bar v2), the AB SS Elite is comparable in every way save for slightly less tensile strength. I've used extensively: Rogue Ohio Power bar, Rogue Ohio Bar, York split sleeve bar and ISF's squat bar. The knurling on the AB SS Elite is bar-none my favorite when it comes to bench/press/squat; especially with chalk. For deadlift, the aggressive knurl from a deadlift bar is still needed.
The differentiator is the attention to detail that the AB SS Elite bar possesses where competitors fail. The highlights of this bar are:
- Beautiful, mild/fine knurling (yes, I prefer mild knurling vs. callous-ripping volcano or peak knurling) that have immaculate incredibly clean stopping points and cutoffs when the knurl ends
- Aesthetically superior machine TIG-welded sleeves
- Quiet, composite bushings that spin better than any of my bronze bushing bars (that includes Rogue bushing olympic bars)
- tight, ZERO side/side slop from the sleeves
These things may seem trivial to the guy who wants to just lift weights, but if you want a refined, premium barbell that offers more than just a piece of steel to work out with, this is the bar to choose.