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Overview of MuscleSport Rhino Black King's Ransom
We have always been a fan of MuscleSport. They do some really cool things with their products, especially their flavoring system. They also have been smart with limited edition launches, King's Ransom being what we believe their best one to-date.
MuscleSport Rhino Black King's Ransom pre-workout is the best pre-workout formulated by the brand ever. The formula addresses all five essentials of a workout: pump, focus, energy, strength/power and endurance. MuscleSport's pricing model is setup to support the brick and mortar stores, so the price in-store is completely justifiable for this formula. We were highly impressed that they were able to intertwine creative marketing with an effective formula.
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Testing Results and Ratings
We reviewed MuscleSport Rhino Black King's Ransom on five categories. We first start by looking at its ingredient profile. This portion of the review looks at the different ingredients used in the pre-workout supplement, what their intention is and how effectively dosed are each ingredient.
We then look at effectiveness. An effective pre-workout product will use high quality, proven ingredients, at clinically backed dosages. This is generally an extension of the profile section. The higher quality ingredients used at proper dosages, the more effective that pre-workout will be.
Then we move into the taste of the different flavors we’ve tried. We grade each flavor separately and average the scores for their overall taste rating. We were able to test out the following flavors: King's Ransom.
Mixability refers to how well the powder mixes in 6-8oz of water. We use the shaker bottle test. This would be your typical Blender Bottle with the spiral chrome ball.
Finally, we talk about value. Value is the combination of profile, effectiveness, taste and mixability in relation to cost. Another part of value are the competitors and other versions of pre-workout products on the market.
Truthfully, this is one of the best formulas we’ve seen that is well-rounded and not reliant on a stim-heavy complex. It is fully transparent with effacacious dosages of their ingredients. The formula covers pump, focus, energy, strength/power and endurance. We will be looking at the 20-serving serving size.
We start with the Nitric Oxide + Recycling Matrix. We start with 6g L-Citrulline. Citrulline is the precursor to Arginine (it has been absorption rate than exogenous Arginine hence why it is used) that increases nitric oxide. The clinical value of Citrulline is 3-5g so we are dosed correctly. AGMass Agmatine Sulfate is used next at 1g. Agmatine has some nootropic effects to it, but its main job is to regulate NO levels. This allows a constant production of NO from the Citrulline. Norvaline is used next at 250mg. Norvaline is known as an arginase inhibitor, which increases NO production. A recent study linked Norvaline to being bad for the brain, but it was one study done via in vitro. Research on Norvaline as an arginase inhibitor is not conclusive. At 250mg this is a sufficient dosage of Norvaline. We get 100mg Epimedium Extract (Horney Goat Weed) standardized to 30% Icariin. This has been shown to help increase blood flow. There are several dosing parameters for Icariin. The last ingredient is Vanadyl Sulfate at 10mg. This ingredient regulates blood glucose levels. In fact, one study has 10mg working to lowered blood glucose levels and lowered insulin sensitivity.
The next complex is known as Cellular Energy Complex. We start with a clinical dosage of 3.2g Beta-Alanine. Beta-Alanine is known for the tingles, but also it increases muscular endurance. BetaPower Natural Betaine is used at 2.5g, this is the accepted dosage. Betaine has been shown to increase strength and power output. GlycerSize is used at 2.5g. GlycerSize is a form of Glycerol. This essentially turns your muscles into a sponge to absorb the liquids to help with endurance and the pump. Creatine MagnaPower (Creatine and Magnesium) is used at 2.5g. This is a form of creatine that may aid in strength and power output.
The last section is the Mind-Muscle Connection & Focus Matrix. We start with 750mg L-Tyrosine. This dosage is OK, we do like to see 1g but with everything else in here we are fine with the 750mg dosage. L-Tyrosine has been shown to increase cognitive abilities. The next ingredient is Alpha-GPC at 600mg. Now, we assume this is the full dosage yielding 50% AGPC which would be 300mg Alpha-GPC which is acceptable. This is our favorite nootropic ingredient. The dosage on this is wonderful. Next we get 300mg of Caffeine Anhydrous. This is the purest form of caffeine which hits right away. At 300mg we are a fan of this dosage. Eria Jarensis, a cognitive enhancing and energy producing ingredient, is used at 125mg. The recommended dosage is 125-250mg per day. L-Theanine, the relaxation ingredient, is dosed at the correct amount of 100mg. This helps alleviate stress to impact focus. Next we get 100mg Hordenine. This is the biggest dosage of Hordenine we have ever used. It is a stimulant that helps increase energy and burn fat. We typically see this dosed at 50mg. A second version of caffeine is used, Di-Caffeine Malate (Infinergy) at 50mg. Di-Caffeine Malate is approximately 75% caffeine. With that said, we are getting about 37.5mg more of caffeine for a total of 337.5g caffeine. An ingredient known as Octopalean is used at 50mg. This is the branded version of Octopamine HCl, which is known as an alternative to ephedrine for fat loss. This is a stimulant, but that will increase energy. The last ingredient is 200mcg of Huperzine A. Huperzine A is a strong cognitive enhancing boosting ingredient. The common dosage is 100mcg.
We will be honest, this is one of the more complete profiles we’ve seen here at FI. It uses several branded ingredients and full doses to achieve a 23g serving size that will speak to pump, energy, focus, strength/power and endurance. Solid work by the crew at MuscleSport. This is their best pre-workout ever.
MuscleSport’s Rhino Black King’s Ransom is a very effective pre-workout. As we mentioned in the profile section, they nailed what we want to see in a pre-workout. We will break this one down by section.
Yes, you achieve a pump with King’s Ransom. You are fighting against the the 300mg+ caffeine and 100mg Hordenine, which are vasoconstrictors, but the use of clinical dosages of Citrulline, AGMass, Norvaline, Icariin and GlycerSize really helps get over that vasoconstriction. You can still supplement with a pump powder (non-stim) but many of you should get a pump from this product. We did. The pump is better overall with the addition of a non-stim pump that utilizes ingredients like Nitrosogine, but overall, pump is solid.
At over 300mg caffeine and 100mg Hordenine you better get energy. If you don’t, you need to lay off the stims. The addition of Eria Jarensis is a staple for MuscleSport products and it aids slightly in energy. If you take this and wait too long to go to the gym you will get antsy. So make sure you take it and within 20-30 minutes your clanging and banging. We will say there is a slight crash to this product which is a negative, but it’s not as bad as a DMAA pre-workout.
This is our favorite part of this pre-workout. The use of Alpha-GPC, Eria Jarensis, Tyrosine, Huperzine A and the stimulants give you one of the best focus pre-workouts on the market today. They don’t just give you these ingredients, they give you high dosages (600mg Alpha-GPC yielding 300mg is clutch). The one area many of us struggle is maintaining focus in the gym. You won’t have that issue here. We would work out at 5:30am, right after waking up, and had great workouts.
Betaine is the main ingredient here contributing to this, but it is a branded version at the high-end dosage of 2,500mg. AGMass can help contribute to this as well, along with the pump complex. We did not experience any declines in strength/power, and we did not experience huge gains, but it remained consistent.
Beta-Alanine is used at the dosage of 3.2g which aids in muscular endurance. The addition of GlycerSize also aids in muscle endurance. We did not feel overly fatigued with the workouts and recovery was well.
The final takeaway here is that it is a very effective pre-workout. Energy and focus are top notch, pump is good, and strength/power/endurance are optimal. The only “negative” is the minor crash we experienced.
MuscleSport is one of the best brands out there in terms of flavoring their products. King’s Ransom is a fruity flavor that is refreshing and delicious. It is hard to tell the actual flavor profile, but the company says it is like a skittles flavor with citrus added…we can see that. Either way, it is an enjoyable flavor that we really liked a lot.
Each serving (at two scoops) is 23g. This is a big scoop. They also have “gold flakes” in the formula too. The flakes can be seen clear as day in the dry powder, but it mixes well per the instructions. We mixed it up with 12-16oz of water via our FI Cylcone Cup. We were impressed with the mixability.
See the video above for a full mixability test.
We have to look at MuscleSport’s products a bit different than most. The website has this pre-workout listed at $69.99. They have coupon codes floating around for 20-40% off the product making them more reasonable. But they price it this way on their website to get you to go into a GNC or Vitamin Shoppe to purchase. The retail price at GNC or Vitamin Shoppe should be around $41.99. At $41.99 for 20-servings we are looking at just over $2/serving. For this pre-workout, which has a great profile, top notch effectiveness, taste and mixability, the price is definitely justified.
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