2017’s Best Pre-Workout Supplements for Energy, Pump, & Focus Reviewed

By Ryan Bucki / February 9, 2017

In an industry with so many players and choices choosing the right supplement for you can be difficult. The pre-workout category is no different. Pre-workouts are a staple supplement for many brands.

Many new start-up brands start with them because it is easy to copy other’s formulas and slap a label on a container and call it your own.

All of this for a minimal investment.

We’ve all read the hype about pre-workout supplements. The bark is way louder than their bite. Cool marketing slogans and product package designs make it difficult to select one that is right for you. This is especially true if you’re just starting out in the game.

We have taken the liberty to help you find your next pre-workout supplement. This is our list of the top six pre-workouts on the market. You will not find a more honest, better compiled list than ours.

The Best Pre-Workouts: 2017 Reviews & Comparison Table

Ranking

Pre-Workout

Ingredients & Features

Price

#1

Inspired Nutraceuticals DVST8 White Cut

DVST8 White Cut is best rated pre-workout supplement
  • 417.5g ThermoFocus Energy Blast containing DMHA
  • 200mg Caffeine (3 Types)
  • 40 Servings

Lowest Price

#2

NutraBio PRE Extreme

PRE Extreme
  • 350mg Caffeine
  • 6g L-Citrulline DL Malate
  • 1.75g Nitric Oxide Booster

Lowest Price

#3

Blackstone Labs Dust Extreme

DUST EXTREME
  • 75mg DMAA
  • 350mg Caffeine
  • 30mg Nootropic

Lowest Price

#4

Kaged Muscle PRE-KAGED

PRE-KAGED
  • 3.5g BCAA's
  • 6.5g L-Citrulline
  • 274mg Organic Caffeine

Lowest Price

#5

VMI Sports K-XR

K-XR
  • 632.5g Maximum Energy Blend
  • 3.3g Intense Pump Blend
  • 4 Great Flavors

Lowest Price

#6

HAK Nutrition PRE HAK

PRE-HAK
  • 275mg Caffeine
  • 6g BCAA's
  • 6g L-Citrulline DL-Malate

Lowest Price

Our Testing Process

We examined five different areas of each pre-workout supp when we compiled our rankings:

  • Profile (ingredients used)
  • Effectiveness
  • Taste
  • Mixability
  • Value

Please Note: Many of the top 10 pre-workout supplement lists you find online are written by content writers with no in-gym or supplement experience who are paid by the word count to write an article for a website trying to generate money. These lists are influenced by brands who pay for placement. These lists contain pre-workout supplements that are, for the lack of a better word, garbage.

The following products on our best of list were used by the author of this article. He used the pre-workout supplements through the duration of a full container. Sample packs were not used in determining the rankings of the following best pre-workouts.

Stop relying on faulty information that is influenced by outside writers and money. This list is the real deal. We don't steer you wrong. Be Informed. Live Fit.

Fitness Informant Guarantee on Why Our Reviews are Legitimate

We just want to remind you that these products were tested for the full duration of the product lifecycle (i.e. a 30-serving tub was taken for a full 30-servings prior to the review). We do not rely on content writers to write our reviews.

Fitness Informant prides itself on being 100% honest with our reviews. We will not be influenced by outsiders. You can trust in us that we are providing you with the absolute accurate truth in our reviews of pre-workout supplements. 

Read More About Us​


Rankings of the Top Energy, Focus, & Pump Pre-Workout Supplements

And here is our complete breakdown of the top 6 pre-workouts of 2017:

#6

6. HAK Nutrition PRE HAK

Our Rating: 7.5/10

PRE-HAK is rated #6

PRE HAK from HAK Nutrition is a solid pre-workout supplement that contains proper doses of high quality energy inducing ingredients you need. PRE HAK targets five different, important areas of your workout: energy, strength, fatigue, focus and pump. With over 21 active ingredients PRE HAK is a solid choice for a pre-workout supplement among those serious about their gym routines.

Who Makes It?

HAK Nutrition broke onto the supplement scene in 2015 with two staple supplements: a pre-workout and a post-workout. HAK Nutrition prides itself on fully disclosed, high quality ingredients and a solid manufacturing process to ensure you are buying quality.

HAK Nutrition operates without any celebrity endorsements building their name on quality alone. HAK Nutrition also donates $1 for every sale to local YMCAs.

PRE Hak nutrition facts Label

PRE HAK uses 21 active ingredients in their pre-workout supplement touching on all the important aspects of your workout: energy, strength, fatigue, focus and the pump. PRE HAK uses high quality, patent ingredients to ensure you are getting an effectively dosed pre-workout supplement.

PRE HAK is manufactured by a reputable manufacturer that has manufactured supplements for MusclePharm in the past. PRE HAK's main goal is to provide a fantastic workout by utilizing only the highest quality of ingredients to ensure you are getting the best pre-workout supplement.

What's In It?

One serving contains:

  • 6g Citrulline DL Malate - increases nitric oxide output and enhances your pump​
  • 2g CarnoSyn® Beta-Alanine - maximizes your strength, power and endurance while fighting fatigue
  • 275mg Caffeine Anhydrous - intensify your workout while increasing your energy and alertness while fighting fatigue
  • 25mg Theacrine (as TeaCrine®) - increases energy, focus and drive without the crash
  • 2g Creatine Hydrochloride (HCL) - increases lean body mass while maximizing strength
  • 6g 2:1:1 BCAA's - fights off fatigue while speeding up muscle recovery
  • 1.5g N-Acetyl-L-Tyrosine - enhances drive and alertness
  • 2.5g Betaine Anhydrous - increases strength output

Bottom Line:

PRE HAK delivers a nice euphoric energy throughout your workouts. It has a nice pump ingredient list to where you don't need to add on any pump activators. The cognitive enhancing ingredients are a nice combination to provide great focus during your workout.

Profile
Effectiveness
Taste
Mixability
Value
75 %
Overall Score

The Highlights:

  • 21g of active ingredients
  • Explosive energy
  • Laser focus
  • Awesome pump
  • High-quality patent ingredients
  • Most active ingredients per dollar
PRE-HAK

Click for the Full PRE HAK Review


#5

5. VMI Sports K-XR

Our Rating: 8/10

K-XR Pre-Workout

K-XR from VMI Sports is a highly effective pre-workout that will enhance any workout. K-XR contains three different blends targeting three very important areas of your workout: energy, focus and pump. Backed by veterans in the industry VMI Sports delivers a high intense pre-workout supplement in K-XR.

Who Makes It?

VMI Sports was a brand formed in 2012 with sports nutrition experts with a commitment to creating products that really work. They have a wide variety of products that cover the sports nutrition world ranging from pre-workouts to pump to proteins. The leaders behind VMI Sports have served many various roles in the sports nutrition industry including the minds behind Lone Star Sports (distributor).

K-XR  Label

K-XR is not a fully disclosed label but it does work, and it contains great patent ingredients. K-XR targets three important areas of your workout: energy, focus and pump with three different blends. The doses work well together to provide an excellent workout.

VMI Sports prides itself on making products that actually work. They used patent ingredients in this pre-workout supplement to follow-up on that promise. Although we'd like to see the ingredients broken out to know doses we will take the awesome workout and entrust in VMI Sports for this formulation.

What's In It?

One serving contains:

  • 3,300mg Intense Pump Blend - contains patent CarnoSyn® Beta-Alanine, L-Taurine and Theobromine to enhance blood flow into your muscles to provide an epic pump
  • 632.5g Maximum Energy Blend - contains 400g of total Caffeine which provides an immediate energy kick, within 15-minutes of taking it and long lasting energy throughout your workout
  • 503mg Focal & Cognitive Enhancing Blend - provides great focus and increased cognitive functions

Bottom Line: 

K-XR is an awesome pre-workout supplement. If you like the energy kick then this is a great choice. It also comes in four tasty flavors which anyone can enjoy. You'll take one serving of K-XR and want to lift every weight in the gym.

Profile
Effectiveness
Taste
Mixability
Value
80 %
Overall Score

The Highlights: 

  • Great tasting flavors
  • Awesome mixability
  • 400mg of Caffeine for sustained energy
  • Great price point
  • Fantastic focus
  • High quality patent ingredients
K-XR Pre-Workout is rated #5

View our full K-XR Review


#4

4. Kaged Muscle PRE-KAGED

Our Rating: 8.5/10

PRE-KAGED is rated #4

PRE-KAGED by Kaged Muscle Supplements is one of the most popular pre-workout supplements in the world that is actually a good product. A lot of big brand supplement companies product mediocre supplements.

Kaged Muscle Supplements is becoming a big brand (especially on the likes of bodybuilding.com) but they have the heart and should of a small brand. PRE-KAGED is effectively dosed to be a well-rounded pre-workout supplement that is worthy of anyone's supplement cupboard.

Who Makes It?

Kaged Muscle Supplements hit the sports nutrition scene running with a plethora of great products backed by Kris Gethin. Kris has many years of experience in the bodybuilding and sports nutrition world. Kris spent many of his years writing for bodybuilding.com until he created his own line.

Kaged Muscle Supplements has the mastermind behind JYM Supplements as their main formulator. They pride themselves on actual test results from real-life people backed by high quality products, 3rd party label verification, real science, banned free substances and backed by a 100% money back guarantee.

Pre-Kaged Label

You won't find a sexier pre-workout supplement label than PRE-KAGED. With a 32g scoop you are getting a very well-rounded pre-workout supplement that targets sever areas of concern when it comes to your workout.

PRE-KAGED is packed with ingredients that target: pump, recovery, muscle growth, fat burning, strength & power, hydration & fatigue, and focus & energy. Backed by third party testing results you can feel confident when taking PRE-KAGED that you are getting exactly what the label says you are getting per serving.

What's In It?

One serving contains:

  • 6.5g L-Citrulline - increases your body nitric oxide production increasing your pump
  • 3.5g BCAA's - fights fatigue and improves muscle recovery time
  • 3g L-Leucine - this is in addition to the 3.5g of BCAA's listed above. This activates mTOR which induces protein synthesis aka muscle recovery
  • 1.6g CarnoSyn® Beta-Alanine - maximizes your strength, power and endurance while fighting fatigue
  • 100mg Capsimax™ - promotes healthy metabolism increasing fat loss
  • 1.5g Creatine Hydrochloride (HCL) - increases lean body mass while maximizing strength
  • 1g N-Acetyl-L-Tyrosine - enhances drive and alertness improving your focus
  • 274mg PureCaf™ Organic Caffeine - increases energy and alertness

Bottom Line: 

PRE-KAGED could be in anyone's top five best pre-workout supplements. It benefits seven areas of concern on your workout with ingredients specifically targeting each area. PRE-KAGED only uses the highest quality of ingredients formulated by the genius behind JYM Supplements.

You're going to get an awesome workout in every time with the use of PRE-KAGED. If you're looking for a well-rounded pre-workout supplement that is more than just a caffeine pill this is it.

Profile
Effectiveness
Taste
Mixability
Value
85 %
Overall Score

The Highlights: 

  • Effectively dosed
  • Highest quality patent ingredients
  • Awesome focus
  • Sustained energy
  • 100% money back guarentee
  • 3rd party verification testing
PRE-KAGED

View our full PRE-KAGED Review


#3

3. Blackstone Labs Dust Extreme

Our Rating: 8.5/10

DUST EXTREME

Dust Extreme from Blackstone Labs has blown up on the best pre-workout supplement market due to the inclusion of DMAA, a risky ingredient that produces one helluva workout. Dust Extreme fits into the "hardcore" pre-workout supplement game in that it is packed with insane energy and awesome focus. The intermediate lifter would want to approach Dust Extreme with caution. Those who have been lifting for a long time, Dust Extreme might be your ticket to breaking through plateaus.

Who Makes It?

Blackstone Labs is known to venture into the “hardcore” world of sports nutrition with their prohormones and their pre-workouts. They take the risk hoping the reward pays off.

Typically these products are highly sought out by us in the bodybuilding world. Their formulations are created by The Guerrilla Chemist, one of the most respected formulators in the sports nutrition industry. Blackstone Labs is owned by PJ Braun who has an extensive background in the bodybuilding community. You take one look at the guy and you immediately trust in him.

Dust Extreme Supplement Facts

Dust Extreme packs a major punch in terms of energy and pump but it's important to note the cognitive function of the pre-workout supplement. Dust Extreme utilizes nootropics to combat any crash you might get from the use of 1,3-Dimethylamylamine (DMAA).

DMAA is seen as a risky inclusion on many products due to the FDA sending out warning letters for supplement companies to remove it. Anytime that the FDA sends out warning letters for an ingredient you know it is good. Dust Extreme uses ten ingredients that will kick your ass into overdrive in the gym. 

What's In It?

One serving contains:

  • 6g Citrulline Malate - increases your body nitric oxide production increasing your pump
  • 2.5g Beta-Alanine - maximizes your strength, power and endurance while fighting fatigue
  • 1g Agmatine Sulfate - promotes production of nitric oxide and increased pumps
  • 500mg N-Acetyl-L-Tyrosine - enhances drive and alertness improving your focus
  • 350mg Caffeine Anhydrous - increases energy and alertness
  • 75mg 1,3-Dimethylamylamine (DMAA) - provides insane energy
  • 30mg Noopept - nootropic that improves cognitive function and reduces crash

Bottom Line: 

Dust Extreme is an amazing pre-workout supplement for the more advanced supplement user. The inclusion of DMAA provides insane energy and massive pumps.

Dust Extreme is a pre-workout supplement that will help you break through plateaus by providing laser focus and insane energy. If you have a high tolerance for caffeine then Dust Extreme should be a great choice for you.

Profile
Effectiveness
Taste
Mixability
Value
85 %
Overall Score

The Highlights:

  • DMAA provides insane energy
  • Massive pumps
  • Nootropics improve cognitive functions
  • Minimal crash
  • Explosive strength
  • Formulated by the Guerrilla Chemist
DUST EXTREME

View our Dust Extreme Review


#2

2. NutraBio PRE Extreme

Our Rating: 9/10

NutraBio PRE Extreme rated #2

PRE Extreme from NutraBio is a more "extreme" version of their popular pre-workout supplement PRE. PRE Extreme includes more caffeine than the original PRE. PRE Extreme was formulated to target five areas of your workout: pre-load, endurance & performance, electrolyte & hydration, focus and pump.

PRE Extreme is a high quality pre-workout supplement made by one of the most well-respected brands in the sports nutrition industry.

Who Makes It?

NutraBio has been in business since 1996 producing some of the highest quality supplements you can buy today. They not only promote awesome, high quality products, but education as well.

NutraBio has been trying to educate the consumer on the sports nutrition industry for several years to ensure that you are purchasing supplements of high quality and not just a marketing gimmick. All of their products contain a 100% transparent label to ensure you know what you are putting in your body.

PRE Extreme Label

PRE Extreme is a step-up from NutraBio's PRE pre-workout supplement. PRE Extreme is a stimulant based pre-workout supplement that we guarantee will enhance your workouts and take you to the next level.

PRE Extreme includes high quality ingredients targeted at specific areas of concern during your workout: athletic endurance and performance, power strength and recovery, hydration and electrolytes, focus and cognitive functions and nitric oxide production. The label is 100% transparent so you know the exact dosage you are receiving per serving.

What's In It?

One serving contains:

  • 15g Highly Branched Chain Dextrin - pre-workout energy in the form of fast digesting carbs
  • 6g L-Citrulline - increases your body nitric oxide production increasing your pump
  • 2.5g  CarnoSyn® Beta-Alanine - maximizes your strength, power and endurance while fighting fatigue
  • 2g Creatine Monohydrate - promotes muscle strength and gains
  • 1g Creatine Hydrochloride (HCL) - increases lean body mass while maximizing strength
  • 3.5g L-Leucine - activates mTOR which induces protein synthesis aka muscle recovery
  • 1.5g Taurine - increases muscle strength and endurance
  • 1.2g N-Acetyl-L-Tyrosine - enhances drive and alertness improving your focus
  • 350mg Caffeine - increases energy and alertness
  • 300mg TheaPure™ L-Theanine - increases focus
  • 1g Agmatine Sulfate - promotes production of nitric oxide and increased pumps

Bottom Line: 

PRE Extreme is a fully packed pre-workout supplement that works, and it works very well. There are no risky ingredients in PRE Extreme. The ingredients used are high quality well researched ingredients by one of the best companies in the world.

PRE Extreme will provide the energy and pump you desire while keeping you on-point with your focus in the gym. This pre-workout supplement will make you not want to stop during your workouts. PRE Extreme could have very well been our number one best pre-workout supplement since it is that good.

Profile
Effectiveness
Taste
Mixability
Value
90 %
Overall Score

The Highlights:

  • Pre-load carbs
  • Insane energy
  • Massive pumps
  • Explosive energy
  • 100% transparent label
  • Highest quality of ingredients available
PRE Extreme

View our PRE Extreme Review


#1

1. Inspired Nutraceuticals DVST8 White Cut

Our Rating: 9/10

DVST8 White Cut rated #1

DVST8 White Cut by Inspired Nutraceuticals is one of the first products created by this company. DVST8 White Cut utilizes the popular DMHA instead of DMAA to provide insane energy and laser focus.

DVST8 White Cut has been rated number one by many different websites, and it is no different here. DVST8 White Cut pre-workout supplement uses high quality, well researched ingredients that work well together to provide an amazing workout experience.

Who Makes It?

Inspired Nutraceuticals is owned by Chris Waldrum, a former sales rep for Dymatize Nutrition is a self-taught success story. He spends the first three hours of his day, per his Facebook, researching new ingredients for new projects. Inspired Nutraceuticals was built on the philosophy of "no fkn gimmicks" only results.

They believe in product over profit ensuring they are creating the highest quality supplements available on the market through the use of pharmaceutical grade ingredients and honest manufacturing processes.

inspired nutraceuticals dvst8 white cut label

DVST8 White Cut uses interesting titles on their label as they are attempting to be different. The V-Fuel Blend are your basics you get in a pre-workout supplement in terms of vitamins and minerals. The Truth Matrix is your power and strength matrix. The MaxVo2 is your pump matrix, increasing your muscle volume. The ThermoFocus Blast is your focus and energy portion of the pre-workout.

DVST8 White Cut utilizes 2-Aminoisoheptane (DMHA) instead of DMAA. DMHA has the safe effects of DMAA but does require a higher dosage of DMHA to be effective.

What's In It?

One serving contains:

  • 4g L-Citrulline - increases your body nitric oxide production increasing your pump
  • 1.6g  Beta-Alanine - maximizes your strength, power and endurance while fighting fatigue
  • 2g Betaine Anhydrous - increases strength output
  • 1g Taurine - increases muscle strength and endurance
  • 50mg Theobromine - increases blood flow to your muscles
  • 7.5mg Cocoa Extract - enhances blood flow and inhibits production of myostatin
  • 200mg Caffeine - increases energy and alertness
  • DMHA - insane energy

Bottom Line: 

DVST8 White Cut has lower doses of specific ingredients versus others on this best pre-workout supplement list but it includes DMHA which I am a huge fan of. DVST8 White Cut provides amazing energy and even better focus than it's counterparts.

DVST8 White Cut utilizes pharmaceutical grade ingredients to ensure you are getting a high quality supplement. DVST8 White Cut pre-workout supplement was rated number one by many different websites because it works and it works very well. If you have not taken a DMHA based pre-workout supplement this is your go-to.

Profile
Effectiveness
Taste
Mixability
Value
90 %
Overall Score

The Highlights:

  • DMHA provides insane energy
  • Phenomenal pumps
  • Amazing focus
  • Increased endurance
  • Pharmaceutical grade ingredients
  • Myostatin inhibiting (larger gains)
DVST8 White Cut

View our DVST8 White Cut Review


Why You Should Trust Our Rankings:

There are a lot of "best of" lists out there but none as honest as our best pre-workout supplement list. Why? Because we actually used these products. We've tested each one and rated them on their ingredient profile, effectiveness, taste, mixability and value. We don't let outsiders influence our decision. We made this list based on what actually works, not on the marketing slogan or product packaging. 

Pre-workout supplements are saturated. There are far too many underwhelming pre-workout supplements that are touted as great by second-rate websites. No longer will we sit around and let you be fooled by the uneducated. Each product reviewed here has their own separate full review on our site. 

If you are struggling to find the right pre-workout supplement for you then read this list. Find out what is important to you. Put high quality ingredients in your body. Obtain the epic pumps you're looking for. Get the insane energy you need. Finally, become laser focused in the gym to achieve your goals by the use of any one of our six top rated pre-workout supplements.

Do not be fooled. Trust in us as we are steering you in the right direction. Buy into quality. Buy into effectiveness. Buy into honesty.

Be Informed. Live Fit.

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