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Need RELIABLE heart rate monitor suggestions(7 posts)

Need RELIABLE heart rate monitor suggestionsronniedee
Jan 5, 2003 9:35 AM
I am trying to decide on a heart rate monitor for training. After reading several reviews, it seems that they're all unreliable. Polar is supposedly the most reliable from what I've seen on this site, but I'm not willing to send it to Polar everytime the battery needs replacing.

I think I only need the basic HR monitor functions, including time spent in, below, and above target; current; and average HR...but I'm open to any input for any additional functions.

Any suggestions? $150 or less is what I expect to spend, but I'm willing to spend slightly more for a reliable, user-friendly piece of equipment.
re: Need RELIABLE heart rate monitor suggestionsAllezcomp
Jan 5, 2003 10:25 AM
You can get a jeweller to change the battery on a polar watch although Polar says that it might not be waterproof anymore.

You do have to send in the chest band for battery replacement. It is pricy but they do have a fast turn-around time. I've only had to send in my chest band once in 3 years.
re: Need RELIABLE heart rate monitor suggestionsJVG
Jan 5, 2003 12:22 PM
While not the sexiest unit, and while it doesn't have the greatest number of "bells and whistles", the Timex Ironman Fitness System has proven reliable and simple to use. I especially like that it is a wristwatch with heart rate functions, unlike the Polar units I have tested which seem to be heart monitors with a watch function thrown-in. I find the Timex easy to set, operate, and I can wear it daily as a regular wristwatch. You can also replace the batteries yourself with ease. has them on sale for $90-100 (different models).

re: Need RELIABLE heart rate monitor suggestionstrout_bum
Jan 5, 2003 12:49 PM
I got a Sigma Sport PC-14 on closeout from Colorado Cyclist- they're $39.95 now! While not the most feature laden-readings are reliable for the money. You get 1 programmable zone w/ alarm, current hr-bpm and %, avg. HR, MAX HR, time above upper limit in %, backlight, calorie, stopwatch,clock,date. Plus user replaceable batteries. More than enough to get you started.
re: Need RELIABLE heart rate monitor suggestionsIan
Jan 5, 2003 1:07 PM
I have used CatEye, Polar and just recently got a Ciclosport. The CatEye was a heart rate / cyclecomputer combo without a watch option, but that was all I needed and it worked well for the few years that I used it. I then had two different Polar models, one basic and one of their Ti models, they both worked well for the few years that I used them. And I just got one of the Ciclosport models that uses digital tranmission, it seems to work fine. The test over time for this one will be crosstalk with other riders and other types of interference, which is what the digital should eliminate. But I just have not got to use it long enough for that type of evaluation.

And just because I got rid of my CatEye and Polar, don't think I didn't like them, I'm just the type who likes to try new stuff.

Good luck,
Jan 5, 2003 2:03 PM
I've had Cardiosport, Vetta and Polar HR monitors. Both the Cardiosport and Vetta broke in less than 2 years. The Polar (ProTrainer NV) has been in use 5 years now. Others have changed the battery themselves. However for about $37 I got a new wrist unit battery and a entirely new transmitter from Polar (took one week). It took nearly 4 years for the 1st battery to go. That does not seem like a big expense over that time. You can get a Polar basic model for under $100.
re: Need RELIABLE heart rate monitor suggestionsMR_GRUMPY
Jan 5, 2003 2:13 PM
If you're looking for an easy to use HR monitor that you can change the batteries yourself, check out the Performance house brands. I don't think that you can program in multiple HR zones like some of the upper level Polar monitors can, but it's easy to change the batteries in both the receiving unit and the chest belt.
Changing batteries in polar units isn't as tough as it seems. I've had Polar products for 7 or 8 years and I've never had to send one in. You just have to take your time and not force anything. The chest belts should last 4 - 6 years. They go for about $40 for a non coded to $60 for a coded belt.