It doesn't matter if you are putting together a home gym or your schools fitness center, you will need to start to think about what type of gym equipment you will need to get the maximum return for the effort involved. Each machine is different and has its own pros and cons, but you will still have to decide on what machines to get that will give you the maximum fitness benefit for your time, money and space constraints.
The modern day, professional gym has every conceivable type of gym equipment in it and it doesn't take long for the average person to get confused as to what is the best piece of equipment that they can buy / rent to achieve good results.
If setting up a home gym and you are after muscle toning, then some of the weight training machines will do the best job.
Add an adjustable bench and you should have a basis of a home gym that most members of the family can use.
You could throw in a pilates machine, will round out the home gym very well. If you have the fund then one of those multi-station gym machine are great when space is at a premium.
Although some of the better quality weight machines are a bit expensive, you do have to remember that they should last a lifetime. Plus many of the more popular brands have easy to find replacement parts plus, a weight machines is fairly easy to repair.
If your budget is a bit tight, then consider buying something second-hand. It may be a little scratched but quality fitness machines are very hard to break and you are sure to have quality equipment for a fraction of the new price tag.
Definitely check out some of the online auction sites, like eBay when looking for your next piece of fitness equipment.