Need new HR monitor
May 21, 2011 7:20 PM   Subscribe

My Polar S610i heart rate monitor just died. I loved the download and graphing capabilities it had. Unfortunately, I do not like the website that the newer Polars download to. There's minimal graphing capability and I'd prefer to keep the data on my own PC. I do not need GPS, temperature or altitude. I just need HR min/max, average and a nice visual representation of the workout. I'd also prefer not to spend more than $150-200. Any suggestions?
posted by TorontoSandy to Health & Fitness (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
If you don't need a coded strap, you can use this widget from Oregon Scientific to record data from whatever HR strap you like. I use it with the cheapest Oregon Scientific HR strap. The software it comes with does OK graphs, or you can save the data as a CSV and graph it in, say, Excel.
posted by anaelith at 8:24 PM on May 21, 2011

Best answer: I know you don't need GPS, but the Garmin 305 is relatively cheap right now on Amazon, and has all the features you want (plus, uh, GPS). The drawback, of course, is that it's pretty big. The 405 is quite a bit smaller, but more expensive, though a factory-refurbished one is still within your stated range. Please note I've based this on US Amazon prices, as your in-profile location is stated as US, despite your Canadian user name. I dunno about Amazon Canada pricing.
posted by dersins at 9:54 PM on May 21, 2011

I'm old school and just enter the data manually into Excel. In the past, I did this because I had to because I'd buy the lower end HRMs, and then later because Polar had no love for Macs.

My last few Polar HRMs have been F6 models* that you can get for under $100. It doesn't capture minimum heart rate but that's a non-issue for me since I only reach the minimum when I start working out.

*I have to get new ones because I will do stupid things with them like lose them crush them, not because they died due to shoddy workmanship. I just get new batteries when they need them and I'm good to go.
posted by birdherder at 10:09 PM on May 21, 2011

this is a little OT, but i was researching to see if i could hook up my polar to my iphone (no).

it turns out, however, that at least some of the garmin units can be hooked to a smartphone, via a technology called ANT+.

polar is apparently working on their own competing version of the tech, but idk how compatible that will be. they apparently have something to do with the nike+ app, but i can't see much about their own tools.

just in case this influences what you need to do with the thing.
posted by patricking at 10:12 AM on May 22, 2011

Do you know that you don't have to transfer your data from the newer Polar watches to You can still download the data to your computer using Polar's ProTrainer software. ProTrainer has tons of functionality and plotting/display capabilities.

There are also 3rd party software packages that can transfer the watch's data and store/manage them locally. I'm aware of iSMARTtrain for the Mac (though I've never tried it myself), and I'm 99% sure I came across a PC program too.
posted by StrawberryPie at 10:21 AM on May 22, 2011

Response by poster: Just an update - I bought the Garmin 305 from Amazon. It worked once and then died. So, I'm looking again.
posted by TorontoSandy at 4:14 PM on May 28, 2011

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