The ATX Gold Bar – Our Review

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⭐️ Best for Shiny Powerlifting: 88/100

ATX’s The Golden Powerlifting Bar (henceforth referred to as “The ATX Gold Bar”) is equal parts beautiful and durable.

Thankfully, it lives up to it’s full namesake; if you’re looking to get serious about powerlifting, this could easily become your everyday barbell.

While ATX’s organization and equipment distribution relationships are difficult to follow, with a plethora of satisfied lifters throughout Europe, they company is obviously doing something right.

Pros

Ideal for powerlifting

Aggressive (but not too aggressive) knurling

Incredibly rigid/stable during “big 3” lifts

Cons

Multiple retailers make customer service inconsistent

Titanium coating can be hit or miss

Not really multifunctional

atx gold bar
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Overall Score

88

Sport-specific Functionality

90

Multi-use Functionality

80

Tensile Strength

95

Coating

85

Price

75

Customer Reviews

100

Warranty & Returns

N/A

Customer Service

N/A

How we test & score products

ATX is one of those companies where if you’ve stepped into a “functional fitness” gym in Europe sometime in the last ~5 years, you’ve probably encountered some of their gear. With dealers in more than half of the European Economic Area (EEA) countries, it’s not hard to see why gyms might opt for “local” products over pricier (and pricier to ship) stuff from the likes of Rogue.

As one of the juggernauts of the European fitness equipment world, it’s hard not to find what you’re looking for in their inventory. This extends into the sub-categories of different training items, most notably barbells.

In this review, we’re not going to look at just an ATX barbell…or just an ATX powerlifting barbell…

…we’re looking at the ATX Golden Powerlifting Barbell (henceforth referred to as the “Gold Bar”).

atx gold bar

Even if you don’t know the difference between dedicated powerlifting and Olympic weightlifting barbells, you gotta admit that the shiny, gold coating looks pretty nice.

Thankfully, the ATX Gold Bar does what it’s intended to do (facilitate lifters during their squats, deadlifts, and bench presses) very well, ensuring that it’s more than just a pretty face.

Unless you’re a dedicated powerlifter, it isn’t going to become your “go-to” barbell (and it really couldn’t be your only barbell), but it certainly rates well enough to secure a spot in any lifter’s barbell armory.

Sport-specific Functionality

The ATX Gold Bar doesn’t beat around the bush about what it is: a powerlifting barbell with a center knurl, aggressive knurling, and high tensile strength. Additionally, the single knurl rings put to bed any type of argument suggesting that you could just as easily bust this bad boy out for your Oly lifting session or even a more casual CrossFit metcon.

For those who don’t like to beat around the bush, I assume this is music to your ears!

In my current training regimen, I squat and front squat at least twice a week and bench and deadlift at least once a week. While I still opt for my KingsBox Great Bar for metcons and Oly lifting, the Gold Bar has become my go-to bar for the dedicated “big 3” lifts + front squats.

To be honest, I’m not a huge center knurl guy (maybe I just don’t appreciate the extra connection it gives my back to the bar when I’m squatting). With that being said, the Gold Bar feels like it…”belongs” on my shoulders when I’m squatting. I appreciate that the bar doesn’t register any give, even as the weight starts creeping up and feels consistently stable and in place throughout the duration of each lift.

Surprisingly, I appreciate how the Gold Bar feels when I’m front squatting more than any other lift. Maybe I’m too used to bars with a bit more spin, but the combination of a higher (but not too high) tensile strength and more aggressive knurling makes the bar feel…consistently stable in hands/on the front of my shoulders during each rep.

“Consistently stable”…without realizing it, this is a phrase that keeps popping into my mind as I write this review.

Again, not being able to fully appreciate the utility of the center knurl, I don’t notice any huge benefit of using the Gold Bar when I’m bench pressing. Additionally, I think I’m unique in the fact that I prefer a more aggressive knurling when deadlifting, but find that it messes with my head (and overall form) when I’m benching.

Finally, as you may have figured from what I have alluded to so far, the Gold Bar is ideally suited for deadlifting. Deadlifts normally come around later in my workouts and the knurling helps to negate some of the effects of the sweat accumulation on my hands. I also appreciate that, while I’m not Eddie Hall, there is absolutely zero bend in the bar under the more modest weights that I lift with (where I have found some other, higher-profile barbell brands to bend in the past).

If you’ve been lifting with a multifunctional barbell, the Gold Bar (likely) isn’t going to put 100 pounds/50 kilograms on your total overnight. If you’re not used to more aggressive knurling and a more brittle-than-average bar, it actually might take some getting used to.

However, as far as accomplishing it’s task of being a “powerlifting barbell”, the ATX Gold Bar passes the snif test…quite well at that. The fact that it also works very well for supplementary and complementary lifts common among powerlifters (such as the front squat) enhances it’s overall utility for it’s intended purpose.

Sport-specific Functionality Score: 90

Multi-use Functionality

I doubt too many people are going to go out of their way to purchase a powerlifting bar to serve as their multi-purpose gym barbell. However, for those who do find themselves in this situation (or who simply want to use their bar for more than just powerlifting), the Gold Bar comes through in a pinch.

Although the shaft is rock solid with knurling that is probably too aggressive for the likings of the vast majority of weightlifters, the sleeves actually have a bit of spin to them. While this isn’t a huge benefit for facilitating Olympic lifts, it does make them easier to perform than many other non-Oly lifting barbells.

For those looking to just “blast their biceps” or perform less specialized movements, the knurling might be slightly problematic, but not so much so to make the bar unusable to those with…uninitiated hands.

If I wasn’t planning on using this bar for powerlifting, I wouldn’t go out of my way to buy it. However, if you are interested in the Gold Bar, know that you’ll likely be able to get some additional use out of it.

Multi-use Functionality Score: 80

Tensile Strength

The ATX Gold Bar boasts an impressive 215,000 Tensile Strength. As much as this might be somewhat “expected”, being that it is marketed as a powerlifting barbell and all, it’s not hard to find a lot of “power bars” on the market packing 190,00 psi.

When I compare it to the my multi-functional barbells that are in the 185,000-195,000 range, the feeling is very apparent. It’s going to take a lot of weight to get the Gold Bar to bend.

215,000 might be a little high for what it is but it doesn’t really get too far into the “brittle” territory.

Tensile Strength Score: 95

Coating

I know what you’re all thinking…gold bars are freaking gimmicky!

If I’m being honest, I generally see something gold like the the Gold Bar and assume that it’s just some crappy gold plating. However, the common link between these gold barbells (and there are actually a lot more of these than I ever realized) is that they’re actually titanium coated.

Titanium isn’t the most common barbell coating, but it is surprisingly durable and element resistant. In the case of the Gold Bar, I have found that even after a lot of abuse (I mean…powerlifters…), it isn’t showing nearly the same wear as the Black Zinc or even Cerakote bars I’ve used in recent times.

I wouldn’t say that the coating is as sleek as other titanium-coated barbells (such as my wife’s KingsBox C-Bar)…

…but, aside from the more aggressive knurling (which I do appreciate, especially when deadlifting) the titanium feels really nice in my hands

Coating Score: 85

Price

This is the part of the review where things gets “tricky” (and by “tricky”, I actually mean “annoying”).

I understand that in the fitness equipment world, there are a lot of re-sellers. By this, I mean you don’t necessarily have to go to Eleiko.com to purchase an Eleiko barbell. However, as basic logic dictates, you can purchase an Eleiko barbell on Eleiko.com if you so desire.

Unfortunately, this logic doesn’t apply to ATX.

When you go to the ATX homepage, you’re greeted by a muscular guy posing and some random comments about “tested quality” and “German engineering” before being directed to a “find your dealer” page if you’re actually interested in purchasing some equipment.

Because of this, it is impossible to find consistency with pricing, customer reviews, warranty, returns, and customer service; each dealer has a different policy!

As it is, I found the Gold Bar to be priced as low as ~303 euros ($327) on one dealer’s page. Certainly not the cheapest barbell out there, but not too pricey.

Price Score: 75

Customer Reviews

As it is, I took a look at 10 of the distributors on the ATX dealer page and, across these distributors, there were 14 reviews of the Gold Bar. All 14 of these were 5 stars (out of 5).

Can’t go wrong with perfect scores across the board.

Customer Reviews Score: 100

Warranty and Returns

Unlike the collection of reviews across a number of different dealers, trying to put a numeric value on an aggregate of different warranty and return policies doesn’t make sense.

If you decide to purchase the ATX Gold Bar, check out your selected dealer’s warranty and return information and compare it to a few others (assuming you’re in the EU and the only other difference will be shipping costs) to determine if it’s the best combination of price and warranty/returns.

Warranty and Returns Score: N/A

Customer Service

Again, like the previous two categories, I’m unable to assign a customer service score due to there being so many different dealers as the “primary seller” of the Gold Bar.

Customer Service Score: N/A

Who is The Gold Bar really for?

The Gold Bar isn’t necessarily for everybody, but as long as you’re not exclusively a weightlifter, it could find a place in your home or garage gym.

Powerlifters

As you might expect, the Gold Bar is ideal for powrlifters. Everything from the center knurl, higher-than-average tensile strength, and powerlifting competiiton-standard knurl rings screams “powerlifter barbell”.

Those who Appreciate Aggressive Knurling

I don’t want to say that the Gold Bar’s knurling is the most aggressive knurling out there, but it does the best job of riding the fine line between “this feels tough and connected to my hands” and “I feel like I’m holding a chainsaw blade”.

Not for those Seeking an Oly Lifting Bar

This probably doesn’t come as much of a surprise…a powerlifting bar not being all that great for weightlifters?

That being said, I would rate the Gold Bar as being slightly better at facilitating Olympic lifts than your average, run-of-the-mill, no name gym barbell. The sleeves actually have a bit of spin to them and while the shaft itself doesn’t move (at all) it wouldn’t be the worst Oly bar in a pinch

…but seriously; don’t buy this if you only plan to snatch and clean with it.

How we reviewed The ATX Gold Bar

As I mentioned before, I normally bench a couple of times a week while I deadlift and bench one day a week, each. I don’t always opt for the Gold Bar during these lifts, but I probably use it at least twice a week for these sessions.

Additionally, I have intentionally worked the Gold Bar into a few metcons (with light barbell cycling) as well and have performed a few Olympic lifting sessions with lighter weights with the bar.

The Gold Bar Alternatives

The Great Bar does what is does pretty well, but if you’d rather opt for something that is pretty similar, check out our picks of top alternatives:

Best alternative

ROGUE – The Ohio Power Bar

There isn’t much to say about Rogue that hasn’t been said before. Powerlifting’s take on Rogue’s most iconic barbell with a less brittle feel and a more diverse selection of coating options than ATX’s Gold Bar.

Pros

The most beloved barbell manufacturer?

A number of coating and price options

Subject to Rogue’s lifetime warranty

Cons

Not inexpensive

Some users have cited shipping problems

Inexpensive Alternative

Bells of Steel – Barenaked Powerlifting Bar 2.0

Canada’s budget power bar option is impressively durable. With more aggressive knurling and standard bare steel coating, a niche powerlifter will love this bar.

Pros

High tensile strength

Inexpensive

Limited lifetime warranty

Cons

Bare steel looks nice; hard to maintain

Overly aggressive knurling

Gritty Alternative

Texas Power Bars – The “Original”

The love child of the likes of Buddy Capps and Mark Rippetoe, Texas Power Bars are used in major powerlifting competitions around the world. The “Original” makes a nice addition to any lifters arsenal.

Pros

Powerlifting bar developed by powerliting champions

Bar has been updated and modified multiple times over the years

A beloved powerlifting company with over 40 years of barbell production

Cons

A niche company not as popular with casual lifters

So many power bar options leads to analysis paralysis

Frequently Asked Questions

I love it. It doesn't move around in my hands at all (like many multi-functional and all Oly lifting bars do) so I can better focus on the task of...bench pressing.

Probably, but you will have to check with your respective dealer/whoever you end up purchasing the bar directly from (someone likely other than ATX).

The "official" numbers (which are all that I can give since my lifts aren't anywhere close to these: are

700kgs(!) for bench press

500kgs (!) for deadlift

400 kgs (!) for squat

If you're human, this bar will handle more than enough for you!

“Is All that Glitters (a) Gold(en Bar)?”

There is a lot to like about the ATX Gold Bar and if you happen to live in Europe and have a little bit of cash, it’s worth a serious look.

Sure, there are multi-functional barbells and even some dedicated powerlifting barbells that are less expensive, but I know I would rather go for the “sure thing” than rolling the dice on something random.

(Of course, some random guy on the Internet (me) telling you something is a “sure thing”…makes it a sure thing!)

The gold/titanium coating might be off-putting to those seeking the polar ends of either sleek stainless steel or raw bare steel, but I think you’ll come to appreciate it. I mean, how many people can say that they own a golden barbell, anyways?

Summary

Overall Score

88

Sport-specific Functionality

90

Multi-use Functionality

80

Tensile Strength

95

Coating

85

Price

75

Customer Reviews

100

Warranty & Returns

N/A

Customer Service

N/A

How we test & score products

ATX – The Golden Powerlifting Bar

ATX’s The Golden Powerlifting Bar (henceforth referred to as “The Gold Bar”) is equal parts beautiful and durable.

Thankfully, it lives up to it’s full namesake; if you’re looking to get serious about powerlifting, this could easily become your everyday barbell.

While ATX’s organization and equipment distribution relationships are difficult to follow, with a plethora of satisfied lifters throughout Europe, they company is obviously doing something right.

Pros

Ideal for powerlifting

Aggressive (but not too aggressive) knurling

Incredibly rigid/stable during “big 3” lifts

Cons

Multiple retailers make customer service inconsistent

Titanium coating can be hit or miss

Not really multifunctional

Photo of author

AUTHOR

Tom, CrossFit Level 1 Trainer, ISSA-CPT, PN1-NC, DPA, CAPM has been CrossFitting for over 10 years. He has participated in a number of team and individual CrossFit competitions across Europe and the United States. He was the 2012 Chick-fil-A Race Series champion (North Georgia Circuit) and has put together a few gnarly garage and basement gyms in his time!

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