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good heart rate monitor/watch

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good heart rate monitor/watch

Old 05-05-05, 09:05 AM
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sh_wn
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good heart rate monitor/watch

I don't want to go the route of the cyclocomputer just yet... I'm still pretty new to this, but I want to get a heart rate monitor/watch... I really want the gps function, too, but I don't want to pay the 300 just yet.

Any opinions? I have been looking at TIMEX, but if anyone has better ideas, let me know...

Thanks!
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Old 05-05-05, 09:31 AM
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I started out with a Polar A3. It was OK for basic monitoring while doing everyday riding for fun. At the suggestion of a local CAT2 racer, I upgraded to the Sports Instruments Pro 9 for race training. I like the functionality so much more than the Polar I had or the other equivalently priced Polars.

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My local bike shop has also been suggesting some of the Nike HRMs to people.
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Old 05-05-05, 10:04 AM
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Look into the Polar CS200. It does both heart rate and bike computer functions. Its not all that readily available in the US, but they should be very soon. The only other options that I know of with GPS built in as well as HRM would by those by Suunto (I think), and they are much more costly.
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Old 05-05-05, 10:16 AM
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If you are at all interested in GPS, consider the Garmin Forerunner 301. It has all the functions of a cyclocomputer (except cadence) with HRM and GPS, which can all be dumped on your computer, displaying a geographical map, terrain profile (elevation, weather, wind), etc. Your activities can also be shared online at www.motionbased.com.

The GPS capability is great for my needs and combined with HRM, it's nice to see how your body reacts to hills you attacked along your ride.

Got mine for $215, shipping included.
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Old 05-05-05, 10:31 AM
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For what you're looking for and describe, the Polar S210 will cover it.
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Old 05-05-05, 11:46 AM
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If you google you could find polar vantage nv(old version of the 810i) watches on sale at cost price.
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Old 05-05-05, 11:52 AM
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I've heard bad things about the heart rate function on the forerunner 301. There are a lot of posts on the motion based forums about erratic heart rates with the FR301.

I'm getting a Polar CS200 (on order with my bike shop, don't know when its gonna come in.) I also carry a GPS with me (Garmin eTrex Legend) so I can get a map and elevation profiles with motionbased.
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Old 05-05-05, 11:56 AM
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i have a polar s150. it has special cycling features that a normal cycling computer would have (speed, ave speed, max speed) and then all the normal heart rate functions. basically you could do all the normal functions with this watch. the interface is a little hard to use (it's a challenge to push those tiny buttons) so i end up only using it to monitor heart rate. i haven't tried to programe zones into it yet. but only because of the interface. it's a nice looking watch too, i wear it everyday.
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Old 05-05-05, 12:35 PM
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The Sports Instruments ECG 5 is a great basic HRM for $50: https://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?sku=9753
Comparable Polar models cost twice as much or more.
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Old 05-06-05, 10:58 AM
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Does anyone use Ciclosport stuff?
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Old 05-06-05, 10:59 AM
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Hey Sunninho, I sent a PM to you about the 301...

I have a 201 on loan from a friend right now... It's not bad but maybe a little too much...
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Old 05-06-05, 11:01 AM
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another vote for the Polar S150 - timmhaan mentioned that it's got the hrm and cycling functions you need to get started. but also it's only $89 for Team Performance members right now.
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Old 05-06-05, 11:31 AM
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Originally Posted by sh_wn
Hey Sunninho, I sent a PM to you about the 301...

I have a 201 on loan from a friend right now... It's not bad but maybe a little too much...
Got your PM sh_wn, you can get the Forerunner 301 at www.tvnav.com for $215, plus $10 shipping.

Regarding the HRM, I haven't had too many problems with mine. It takes some getting used to at first and you just have to maintain a wet contact between the strap and your chest, which comes naturally
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Old 05-09-05, 08:43 AM
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Thanks for the info... I am also looking into the Polar series, too!

Any more info about them?
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Old 05-09-05, 09:00 AM
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Originally Posted by sh_wn
Thanks for the info... I am also looking into the Polar series, too!

Any more info about them?
I have a polar A3. There's no cycling functions and nothing fancy about it, however it does have an audio alarm on it when you get outside of your predetermined range which I suspect that almost all wrist mounted HR monitors will have. This is really the only feature I care much about as far as a HR monitor goes. Personally I can't see the need to get a wrist HR monitor with cycling features if price is your hurdle, because by the time you pay for it you're going to be close to the price of a cyclocomputer with HR functions.
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Old 05-09-05, 09:05 AM
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What about calorie functions? That's something I'm curious about...
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Old 05-09-05, 09:14 AM
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One note on the GPS issue: all the other GPSs (e.g. Garmins) discussed here are way bulkier than a wristwatch-size Polar HRM. Some of the larger GPSs will provide the convenience of a real map display, but not the entry-level Forerunners.

To my knowledge the only manufacturer with small combined GPS and HRM is Timex, but even there you will wear not only the "watch" but a HRM strap and a separate GPS unit too. The watch will display all the data, but no maps for the GPS (obviously).

Suunto do not have a model with both GPS and HRM, but their GPS enabled models (X9 and M9) do not require any additional hardware, just the "watch". No maps here, either. They have several models with HRM, with those you will be wearing some kind of a strap.

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Old 05-09-05, 01:00 PM
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The Timex sporadically cuts on and off. Eventually, it just stops working. So far, Timex has no answer on how to resolve this issue. I wouldn't try it if I were you. I experienced the same thing with all the gps I bought for my clients. Bleah.

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Old 05-09-05, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by sh_wn
What about calorie functions? That's something I'm curious about...
After dumping data from the Garmin, calories get calculated by the software (Training Center) provided with the Forerunner. I'm not sure how they calculate it, though.
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Old 05-09-05, 06:05 PM
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I have a Sports Instrument ECG5. Good entry level monitor that won't break the bank.
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Old 05-09-05, 06:20 PM
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HAC4 + eTrex Vista (costs alot more than you want to spend but then again you want it to work, don't you?)
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Old 05-09-05, 06:55 PM
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I use the Sigma Fit Watch. Pretty easy, reliable and cool looking.
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Old 05-09-05, 07:14 PM
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Sports Instruments ECG 5. Great monitor with all the features you need at an awsome price. I've never had any problems with interference or not recieving the signal.

TJ
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Old 05-09-05, 07:53 PM
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another vote for Sigma Fit Watch ...

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Old 05-09-05, 08:42 PM
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i second the vote for the garmin forerunner 301. i've had both the timex and the polar combined hrm/computer (i have different bikes, different sizes, blah blah, so i wanted one computer that would work on everything). the timex would cut out for no reason, lose the signals on a clear sunny day, it's computing was erratic, the 'smoothing' was too slow, the distance from the receiver in my pocket to the watch was beyond the limits when in a time trial position, and a four hour ride would eat a set of batteries. i fought with it for six months and finally gave up. the polar simply wouldn't work on a cold day for some reason, and the watch itself froze up after about a year. i finally tried the garmin and haven't had a problem. it's rechargable, its reception is better than the timex, the entire unit is self-contained so there is no distance problems like the timex, it worked in a 36 degree time trial two weeks ago. calories is a bogus computation, in my opinion, but if you want 'em, the computer software figures it. two things about this unit - since the gps receiver is built into the watch, it's a big damn thing on your wrist. you could probably call scotty and have him beam you up. personally, i don't care. it's easily readable while i'm in the aerobars on my time trial bike, and i usually mount it directly onto the 'bars of my road bike. the other problem is that the heart rate readout is a really tiny number in the upper right corner. the fix? the display window has three panes of info; one window lets you customize all three panes. put the heart rate on one of them. it's pricey ($225-300), but it works well, which is better than i can say for either the timex or polar
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