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  1. #1
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    HAC4 frustration

    Bought a HAC4 plus HR/Computer today. I am totally frustrated and confused. Finally got the connection
    to the computer but have no clue how to do anything useful with the raw data file I was able to download
    after 6 hours.

    I am computer literate, and have done a fair amout of programming in Java, and Python on both Windows and Linux but I am amazed that the "documentation" is so confusing and complicated
    Can anyone shed any light on this for me? I am beginning to feel really dumb, and am very close to taking it back to the dealer. I have spent much time trying to help myself by searching on the web, but
    all I seem to see is hype or enticing graphics but no real instructions on how to use this thing.

    PLEASE HELP ME!!!

    DAn

  2. #2
    Senior Member Bontrager's Avatar
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    I love mine.

    What do you need to know?

    My raw data file downloads in about 60-100 seconds. I set the virtual serial port to 11520 bauds and xon/xoff.

    It is a pain until you grasp what it is they were trying to say in their german-english translation. I don't use the software to its full potential - right now the statistic download is for documentation only. I mainly use HacTronic but others that use their HAC more have said that they use CicloTour. I haven't used CicloTrainer yet.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member Bolo Grubb's Avatar
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    I would like to get a HAC4 from what I have read about them but the price tag is making me hold off for now

  4. #4
    Senior Member Bontrager's Avatar
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    I got my HAC4+ (comes with the cradle, software, cadence) for about $280 on eBay from this guy who's name is StyleKingz.

    The HAC4 and the HAC4+ is the exact same computer. The + just comes with stuff you can buy separately later.

    Just make sure you get the English (Imperial) version unless you like meters and stuff. The English/Imperial version HAC 4 + comes with a USB cradle and the euro version comes with a Serial cradle.
    08 Giant TCR Alliance Custom Build
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    08 Fuji Outland Pro Custom Build (mostly Forge stuff)
    08 Forge Sawback 5xx MTB frame
    08 Downtube IX FS folding
    09.5 Downtube Front Suspension folding
    09 Diamondback Insight 1 flatbar road/beer
    09 Diamondback Clarity 1 flatbar road/beer
    1 bedroom apartment

  5. #5
    hors category TandemGeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dannykmcdaniel
    ....but have no clue how to do anything useful with the raw data file I was able to download after 6 hours.
    This is a link to something I posted in response to a similar question:
    HAC 4 Plus

    In short, you can do as much or as little with the data as you like or have the patience for.

    Me, I use the Hactronic S/W to "suck" the data out of the watch and save it to a working file on my hard drive. Double-clicking on any of the "records" that appear in the first data table that comes up once the HAC4 completes downloading will open the record and provide you with several different tabs that reflect different views of the data: Graphic is a histrogram that plots anywhere from one to all of the data in the record; you toggle the individual features on and off with the software. Analysis is a series of tables that reflect the maximum values and averages. There are some others but I don't recall them off hand (doing this from memory). Anyway, from the expanded view you can save the record as a .tur file for call up later if you like. Bear in mind, the HAC4 will continue to build up records that remain stored in the watch until ~64 hours worth of data are collected, after which the oldest records will begin to drop off. Therefore, if you do an annual event that you would like to recall in the future, you would be wise to safe that record as a .tur file. It's also worthwhile to note that you can go into the datafile view and clear-out any data points from your ride where you took breaks, etc... so as not to have that factored into some of the calculations that you intend to store in your working file or use in the other programs. Note: you will find that each program and the watch don't always agree on the data since each program uses different logic and/or processes the data differently. Again, I haven't take too much time to over analyze the data since it's meeting my basic needs, e.g., measuring performance improvements against a known baseline for HRM, ave speeds, etc. Virtual power; never use it.

    OK, next comes the Ciclotrainer S/W. This is basically a training diary. You can also suck the data off the HAC4 with this program or you can import the data from a saved copy of the downloaded data, i.e., my so-called "working file". Each time you select the "Import Data" from a source file or the computer every record will show up in a pop-up menu with a check box next to it. You merely go to the end of the list and select the files that aren't already stored in your Ciclotrainer data file. You can create annotations for each of the diary entries during this process, e.g., was it ridden on a Road Bike, Off-Road, your Tandem, was it a running event, etc... You can also plug in your weight, resting heart rate, and other information that you want to keep track of in your training diary that could relate to your recorded performance. As with the Hactronic S/W, there are a variety of ways that you can look at each file; single day's effort, specific or *** metrics by week, month, or annual, etc... It keeps a running tally of your mileage, vertical gain, average HR in zone, weight, etc... at the bottom of the diary.

    Finally, there is the CicloTour which provides you with even more functionality. I've played with this but haven't truly mastered how it works as I basically get what I need from the quick look at the Hactronic data and the diary.

    In practice, I only download the HAC4 about once a week unless I'm interested in checking out my performance on a epic ride of some sort (not too many of those these days). It's a quick dump to the Hactronic S/W where I save my working file and then into the Ciclotrainer S/W to import the new data that keeps my training log up to date. I don't bother to add much data to the training log except to identify which type of bike/ride the data was recorded on, e.g., single road, tandem road, fixed-gear road, single off-road, or tandem off-road. For off-road, while I initially would move over the speed sensor and change the wheel size setting, I've since decided it's just easier to use a separate SigmaSports computer to collect the mileage data and then input those numbers along with ave. speed, and time into the Ciclotrainer diary with the HRM and other data that comes off the HAC4 worn as a wristwatch. You can also just create manual diary entries for rides where you leave the HAC4 at home if you want to be really anal about logging your mileage.

    Anyway, just one users view. I'm really happy with the CicloSport products and my HAC4. My wife has a Polar S720i which is also a good product with a steep learning curve.

  6. #6
    hors category TandemGeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bontrager
    I got my HAC4+ (comes with the cradle, software, cadence) for about $280 on eBay from this guy who's name is StyleKingz.
    Same, except I bought from Whatadeal a year or so ago who seems to be selling the whole kit & caboodle for $305. http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll ViewItem&category=42319&item=7134344535&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW

    I also bought a few extra Cadance mounts which gives you a receiver head w/o the front wheel pick-up. I've found I can move the fork-mounted wheel pick-up from bike to bike in about 1 minute so it was a far more economical way to have multiple bikes fitted with the unit vs. buying the entire 2nd bike kits. Any spoke-mount magnet will work with the units.

  7. #7
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    Wow, I thought the Polar software/interface was bad... I'll stop complaining now.

  8. #8
    Senior Member jazzy_cyclist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TandemGeek
    Same, except I bought from Whatadeal a year or so ago who seems to be selling the whole kit & caboodle for $305. http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll ViewItem&category=42319&item=7134344535&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW

    I also bought a few extra Cadance mounts which gives you a receiver head w/o the front wheel pick-up. I've found I can move the fork-mounted wheel pick-up from bike to bike in about 1 minute so it was a far more economical way to have multiple bikes fitted with the unit vs. buying the entire 2nd bike kits. Any spoke-mount magnet will work with the units.
    TandemGeek, are these modules that you mention (Hactronic, Ciclotrainer, Ciclotour) included as part of the caboodle, or are they separate? I've been eyeing the HAC4+...

  9. #9
    Senior Member Bontrager's Avatar
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    They're part of the Hac4+ package. 3 CD's.
    08 Giant TCR Alliance Custom Build
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  10. #10
    hors category TandemGeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jazzy_cyclist
    TandemGeek, are these modules that you mention (Hactronic, Ciclotrainer, Ciclotour) included as part of the caboodle, or are they separate? I've been eyeing the HAC4+...
    They are included.

    Buyers should also make a point to download the updates from CicloSport's Web sites:
    http://www.hac4.com/downloads.htm or here
    http://www.ciclosport.de/cgi-bin/anz...oads/start.htm

    You can also look at some some of the software demo's & screen shots at this Web site:
    http://www.hac4.com/hactronic.htm or here
    http://www.ciclosport.de/cgi-bin/anz...oads/start.htm

  11. #11
    hors category TandemGeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by F1_Fan
    Wow, I thought the Polar software/interface was bad... I'll stop complaining now.
    Bad = not intuitive? Yeah, they both have steep learning curves; no doubt about it. However, the more you learn about these wristtop /handlebartop computers and their software the more you begin to appreciate how complex they are and just how much you can do with them, if you do desire. Biggest beef with the HAC4 is the low sampling rate which causes altitude gained to lag behind actuals by about 10% - 15% depending on how undulating the terrain is. Polar now lets you adjust your sampling rate but trades off more data for less time capacity. It's a good trade off for cyclists, IMHO; you just need to remember to download more often.

  12. #12
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    I purchased a new HAC4 Plus and am able to transfer the data (the transfer is represented by the progress bar), but no data appears in the Trainer software other than the date it was recorded. Thought?

  13. #13
    Senior Member Bontrager's Avatar
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    See my post in the other thread - you're not telling your hac4 to record...
    08 Giant TCR Alliance Custom Build
    08 Trek 1000 Discovery Channel
    08 Fuji Outland Pro Custom Build (mostly Forge stuff)
    08 Forge Sawback 5xx MTB frame
    08 Downtube IX FS folding
    09.5 Downtube Front Suspension folding
    09 Diamondback Insight 1 flatbar road/beer
    09 Diamondback Clarity 1 flatbar road/beer
    1 bedroom apartment

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