I really like the machine a lot and feel it helps me in skiing better....not only for helping with technique, but also in conditioning so that I can ski longer and better without getting tired. I have the IV, new from last March...and I got the Big Mountain series because of the higher slope. I debated endlessly about whether or not to get the RPM/slope simulator, but finally decided that for how I ski, I didn't need it. This was the advice of the Skiers edge salesman, too, who frankly said that unless you are on a ski team or something you probably don't need more than the Big Mountain with the standard platform! I am totally happy with the machine, and for me it was definitely worth the money. As with any sports equipment, you have to commit to actually using it for it to be worth the investment. By the way, I contemplated getting a used one, but the only ones I found for sale were older models and almost always the classic series, which had the lower slope. Since my goal in puchasing was 1) improve skiing technique, especially the edging and unweighting process and 2) conditioning-- IN THIS ORDER, I decided on the Big Mountain series. I wanted the newer model since there did seem to be some design improvements over the earlier ones, and it looked like some of the people selling the older ones wanted to sell in order to get a newer version. I figured that if I got really really good in skiing and really really used the machine heavily, I could later justify spending extra $$$ to get the RPM/slope simulator to further improve. That seemed better than buying it out the gate and regretting it later in case things didn't work out.