Back in 2008, Muscletech Nano Vapor was the first pre workout I ever tried. It had a massive serving size, and was loaded with stimulants and everything grizzly. Being my first pre workout, that stuff will always hold a happy memory for me.
Since then I have reviewed every single Vapor pre workout by Muscletech.
Over the last 10 years, there have been about 8 formula changes to the once “Nano Vapor” and now “Vapor X5” line.
This isn’t a surprise, as you can see that they do this with all of their products (Neurocore, Hydroxycut, etc).
Really, it’s a marketing tactic.
Nearly every year, the formula has a new breakthrough that builds all sorts of hype. And as we all know, hype is good business.
Though from a technical standpoint, the only thing that we’ve noticed is the formula sizes getting smaller and less complex.
Muscletech VAPOR X5 Pre Workout Quick Review: Unlike previous Nano Vapor versions, the new VAPOR X5 lineup delivers even smaller formulas for a quick energy hit to power through your workouts. Across the board, caffeine dosages are reduced along with pump ingredients, while Yohimbe remains high. Overall, this is a down-grade in comparison to previous Nano Vapor products; however it is also less expensive.
Quick Strengths: Quick hitting, great tasting energy.
Quick Weaknesses: Touted ‘clinical dosages’ are based off taking two servings (thus 15 servings per container). This is basically just an energy drink that comes in 3 variations, that’s it.
How to Take Vapor X5 Pre Workouts: I wouldn’t take any of the Vapor X5 pre workouts more than 40 minutes before a workout, since the stimulants are significantly less. 15 minutes before lifting would be preferred. For users not brand new to pre workouts, dosage doubling will happen rather quickly.
Vapor X5: Next-Gen, Ripped, Neuro Rating Factors
Energy Effects: 5/10 (average)
If you are new to pre workouts, then Vapor X5 and its variants will likely be an impressive product to you. However, if you are a standard pre workout user, then the 150-190 mg of caffeine per Vapor X5 serving isn’t going to cut it. In this case, you will be increasing to 2 scoops per serving, and thus 300-380 mg caffeine per serving. Now we’re talking! Only one small problem… You’re now taking in 50 mg of Yohimbe and likely sweaty and jittery. For that reason, none of the new Vapor X5’s do well in our energy department.
Strength Effects: 5/10
Across the board, there are not any significant strength boosters aside from caffeine and under-dosed creatine in Next-Gen and Neuro.
Important Note: This product does claim to increase strength… But didn’t for us.
Endurance Effects: 5/10
Caffeine comes and goes, and that summarizes Vapor X5 so well. Unless you re-dose mid workout, do not expect a true endurance boosting experience.
Note: Again, Vapor X5 claims to increase endurance, which is doesn’t.
Crash / Aftermath Effects: 6/10
For all Vapor X5 formulas, a small dosage of L-theanine is included to smooth over the caffeine and create less of a crash. Though, it isn’t quite enough.
For this category, Vapor X5 Neuro out-performed the others with its extra nootropic ingredients. This essentially keeps your brain fed even after the caffeine begins to wear off.
Taste: 9/10 (all versions tasted delicious)
While large mainstream brands tend to cut serious corners on product performance… They NEVER skimp on taste. While the flavors and sweeteners aren’t exactly natural, they are delicious.
For a noob or low-stimulant lover, the price to value is more like 8/10 – since you are getting 30 servings for about $30. However for us, we had to double up servings to get a decent response, therefore granting 15 servings for $30. Previous Nano Vapor versions suited our needs better.
Muscletech has taken a unique product line, and made it basically run of the mill. Pre workouts similar to Vapor X5 include their primary competitor line: Cellucor C4.
Likewise, there is no denying the similarities between the Vapor X5 line, and other Muscletech brands like:
And of course Neurocore. We’ve maintained a comparison for Neurocore Vs Vapor X5 here dating back a few formula versions.
Review Conclusions: 6/10 – Preference towards Vapor X5 Neuro Version
Overall, Vapor X5 Next Gen, Vapor X5 Ripped, and Vapor X5 Neuro are a complete regression for Muscletech pre workouts. For 2018 Muscletech is clearly a marketing company and not an innovative supplement manufacturer.
Vapor X5 Ingredients Compared and Explained
When comparing the ingredients across Vapor X5 Next-gen, Neuro, and Ripped – there are a few small differences hidden across very non-uniform labels.
So, what makes each product unique?
Vapor X5 Next Gen Unique Factors:
|190 mg caffeine||750 mg Nitrosigine|
|62.5 mg L-theanine||1.25 grams betaine|
|1.5 grams creatine monohydrate||1.6 grams beta-alanine|
Vapor X5 Ripped Unique Factors:
|150 mg caffeine||50 mg L-theanine|
|No Creatine||1.5 grams L-citrulline|
|L-carnitine tartrate and rosemary||1.2 grams beta-alanine|
Vapor X5 Neuro Unique Factors:
|150 mg caffeine||50 mg L-theanine|
|1.5 grams creatine monohydrate||1.5 grams L-Citrulline|
|100 mg N-acetyl-L-Carnitine HCL||10 mcg Huperzine A|
There are very small differences between each product. Between them all, we definitely prefer the Vapor X5 Neuro.
Something we didn’t like, is all the different “matrixes” and “blends” that Muscletech categorized ingredients in.
- In Ripped, L-theanine and choline fall into the “Neurosensory blend”
- In Neuro, “Ultra Neurosensory matrix”
- And in Next-Gen, its split between “Neurosensory blend” and “explosive energy matrix”
If you dissect the labels and compare, you will find lots of random marketing BS jargon like this across all Muscletech products. These are mistakes that educated nutraceutical formulators DO NOT MAKE, so why is Muscletech making them?
Our Verdict on Vapor X5 Next-Gen, Neuro, and Ripped
Overall we’re not that impressed as gym junkie supplement reviewers. When a new pre workout comes out, we expect it to be better, cooler, more effective… The Vapor X5 line isn’t any of that, it just has a “new” label on it.
For that reason, we label this as a beginner’s pre workout and leave it at that.