Stacked NO Reviews
IntroductionAs always thanks to RCSS for supporting the TROOPS
RCSS actually sent me both the capsule form and powder form of Stacked NO (I'll abbreviate it to SNO), so although this is a TROOPS review for the capsules, I'll review the powder in here as well. Actually RCSS initially sent me Yeah Buddy PWO in error, so I will review that separately too. So with 3 products to review, its a BigRon month for me right now - lets see how it went...
Ingredient ProfileSNO caps and powder feature the same ingredients at the same doses. Obviously the caps have some mag stearate for the capping process, and the powder has some filler (maltodextrin) to bulk it out into a (small) scoop sized portion. Active ingredients are identical. There is 1500mg citrulline malate (1:1), which is a bit underdosed but I find gives more of an endurance benefit than pump anyway. The common pump ingredient agmatine is in there at 500mg, which I think is just right. There there is a 325mg prop blend (which I really dislike), that contains L-ornithine, which has been used forever (I remember taking it in the 1990's) and recognized as an endurance enhancer through reduced ammonia blood levels. Astragin is an RCSS favorite and others have commented that it really helps with absorption of the other compounds in here. I dont doubt it since SNO was very effective for me.
Unfortunately no RCSS products have been tested on Labdoor.com yet so we dont have any independent check on the contents.
Taste/Mixability/DosingI took 3 caps with my PWO. For the powder i simply mixed in a scoop with my PWO. I had the strawberry watermelon taste which was actually very pleasant - better than Yeahbuddy's electric lemonade. However I rarely had SNO on its own since it was easier to throw it into the PWO and chug both together.
Whats the deal with RCSS and dyes though? SNO powder is loaded with red dye. Yeah Buddy is loaded with blue dye. I found that an awesome combo was a scoop of each as a PWO - but what you then get in your bottle is shown in the photo below - a tribute to Prince! (sorry - couldn't resist that)
EffectivenessI have reviewed a pump product before and that is VASST, which works great. Although the components are somewhat different, I put SNO on a par with VASST in effectiveness. I saw some increase vascularity (biceps. maybe a little in shoulders) before leaving the house - a clear indicator of vasodilation. And then really solid pumps, especially in biceps but also tris. I also felt back pumps on back days. An additional benefit of all this blood flow I think is the flushing of waste products. I felt I could definitely get an extra couple of reps, especially when using creatine HCl at the same time. One thing I did find was that I had to watch how much agmatine was in the PWO I was taking along with SNO. 500mg agmatine in the PWO was the sweetspot. Along with the 500mg in SNO that made 1g. Some PWOs, like Nutrabio PRE which is one of my favorites, already have 1g agmatine in them. At a total of 1.5g agmatine, the pumps became painful due to lactic acid buildup - to the point of distraction. I was constantly stretching to try to ease the soreness. Definitely something to watch if you experience that. On additional point: although some PWOs contain 1g agmatine, and usually plenty of cit malate, I never got as good pumps with them as i did using SNO, so the combination of ornithine, or maybe the absorption power of Astragin, really magnifies the pump effect with SNO. Maybe the key is the amounts of those components, hence the reason for the prop blend.
ValueSNO caps are $28 for 90 on Allstarhealth right now. For me, 3 caps work and I didn't feel the need to take more, so under $1/workout, which is very good value. Even better value is the powder. RCSS saves a little by no having the product capped and passes the saving on: a serving of the powder is 4g, which contains the same active ingredients (and amounts) as 3 caps. You get 30 scoops in a tub which is retailing at only $21.40 on Amazon right now, so only $0.71 per workout. This is one of the best values on the whole of the supplements business right now. At a higher price point I would probably use a pump product just for arm days, but at 71 cents a scoop, I am adding it every workout.
ConclusionRCSS has done a great job here with this product, at an excellent price point for the capsule form. In powder form the value is off the hook and for me is going to be a regular addition to any PWO (just watch the total weight of agmatine). Recently I have been using 1 scoop Yeah Buddy/1 scoop SNO and 2.5g creatine HCl as a PWO and the combo is awesome.