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2014-12-10 12:03 PM

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Subject: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
I am looking for a new motivation tool for the coming year. Both of the gadgets are expensive and on the research I've done thus far, some say Garmin, some say Polar. They seem to be fairly close in what they offer although I've seen "rattlings" about Garmin going kaput more often but I've never had a Garmin. I've had Polars in the past but just the heart rate monitors. I don't know if anyone has shelled out the money on either of these products (I saw the review on the Polar V800 here), and I realize that neither one is going to be perfect, and it's going to be my choice in the end, Through Amazon, the Polar is $400, the Garmin $500 - either way, a chunk of money, but if anyone has any feedback, I'd appreciate their input. Thank you.


2014-12-10 12:11 PM
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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
Originally posted by luv2bhealthy

I am looking for a new motivation tool for the coming year. Both of the gadgets are expensive and on the research I've done thus far, some say Garmin, some say Polar. They seem to be fairly close in what they offer although I've seen "rattlings" about Garmin going kaput more often but I've never had a Garmin. I've had Polars in the past but just the heart rate monitors. I don't know if anyone has shelled out the money on either of these products (I saw the review on the Polar V800 here), and I realize that neither one is going to be perfect, and it's going to be my choice in the end, Through Amazon, the Polar is $400, the Garmin $500 - either way, a chunk of money, but if anyone has any feedback, I'd appreciate their input. Thank you.


There is a long, quite negative thread on ST about the V800. It's mostly due to features that took too long to arrive, but are slowly arriving. The biggest beef is it's inability to work with most power meters. If a power meter is in your future, think twice about Polar.

I have always found Garmin products to be borderline in terms of quality. The 910xt had a lot of problems with the barometric altimeter that was a design weakness. I suspect the 920xt will have some glitches that will be resolved with software patches. Some people have no problems, or are unaware there is a problem.

The 920 has more features and the fact it is now an open platform will probably more for even more features. Polar will never be able to keep up on the feature front. But I believe Polar has better quality (IMO).

They look very different and some people go by the look. Good luck, it's a tough choice.


also : check out DC Rainmaker's blog

Edited by marcag 2014-12-10 12:23 PM
2014-12-10 12:48 PM
in reply to: marcag

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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
Originally posted by marcag

Originally posted by luv2bhealthy

I am looking for a new motivation tool for the coming year. Both of the gadgets are expensive and on the research I've done thus far, some say Garmin, some say Polar. They seem to be fairly close in what they offer although I've seen "rattlings" about Garmin going kaput more often but I've never had a Garmin. I've had Polars in the past but just the heart rate monitors. I don't know if anyone has shelled out the money on either of these products (I saw the review on the Polar V800 here), and I realize that neither one is going to be perfect, and it's going to be my choice in the end, Through Amazon, the Polar is $400, the Garmin $500 - either way, a chunk of money, but if anyone has any feedback, I'd appreciate their input. Thank you.


There is a long, quite negative thread on ST about the V800. It's mostly due to features that took too long to arrive, but are slowly arriving. The biggest beef is it's inability to work with most power meters. If a power meter is in your future, think twice about Polar.

I have always found Garmin products to be borderline in terms of quality. The 910xt had a lot of problems with the barometric altimeter that was a design weakness. I suspect the 920xt will have some glitches that will be resolved with software patches. Some people have no problems, or are unaware there is a problem.

The 920 has more features and the fact it is now an open platform will probably more for even more features. Polar will never be able to keep up on the feature front. But I believe Polar has better quality (IMO).

They look very different and some people go by the look. Good luck, it's a tough choice.


also : check out DC Rainmaker's blog


Thanks! That is one of the places I looked. And I actually saw you on there, correct? But the thread was comparing the 910 and I wasn't sure if the 920 was any better than the 910 since it is new. Yes, it is a tough choice! I will check that blog and read some more on ST.
2014-12-10 1:20 PM
in reply to: luv2bhealthy

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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
While getting the newest, shiniest thing might be a factor in this purchase as a motivation tool, you might be able to sneak by with nearly all the features you need and save a lot of cash.
What about either of those two watches interests you? Which features are 'gotta have its'?

I suspect a lot of people getting 920's would be shocked to see how much more they are paying for a small number features versus the 310.
2014-12-10 1:27 PM
in reply to: luv2bhealthy

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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
Originally posted by luv2bhealthy

Originally posted by marcag

Originally posted by luv2bhealthy

I am looking for a new motivation tool for the coming year. Both of the gadgets are expensive and on the research I've done thus far, some say Garmin, some say Polar. They seem to be fairly close in what they offer although I've seen "rattlings" about Garmin going kaput more often but I've never had a Garmin. I've had Polars in the past but just the heart rate monitors. I don't know if anyone has shelled out the money on either of these products (I saw the review on the Polar V800 here), and I realize that neither one is going to be perfect, and it's going to be my choice in the end, Through Amazon, the Polar is $400, the Garmin $500 - either way, a chunk of money, but if anyone has any feedback, I'd appreciate their input. Thank you.


There is a long, quite negative thread on ST about the V800. It's mostly due to features that took too long to arrive, but are slowly arriving. The biggest beef is it's inability to work with most power meters. If a power meter is in your future, think twice about Polar.

I have always found Garmin products to be borderline in terms of quality. The 910xt had a lot of problems with the barometric altimeter that was a design weakness. I suspect the 920xt will have some glitches that will be resolved with software patches. Some people have no problems, or are unaware there is a problem.

The 920 has more features and the fact it is now an open platform will probably more for even more features. Polar will never be able to keep up on the feature front. But I believe Polar has better quality (IMO).

They look very different and some people go by the look. Good luck, it's a tough choice.


also : check out DC Rainmaker's blog


Thanks! That is one of the places I looked. And I actually saw you on there, correct? But the thread was comparing the 910 and I wasn't sure if the 920 was any better than the 910 since it is new. Yes, it is a tough choice! I will check that blog and read some more on ST.


I may have posted early on as I was interested in the V800. I am not anymore. It's too little, too late and it does not support the better power meters out there. The title of the thread is Polar V800 ask me anything. http://forum.slowtwitch.com/gforum.cgi?post=5121483;page=unread#unr...

The 920 does have more features than the 910. Maybe I'll go that route. If I do, I will get a 3 year extended warranty because I know it will go in for service. I have a 910. It has been replaced a few times with the defective altimeter issue. It's warranty expires in a month and my confidence in Garmin quality has me making plans for what's next.


2014-12-10 1:34 PM
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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
"While getting the newest, shiniest thing might be a factor in this purchase as a motivation tool, you might be able to sneak by with nearly all the features you need and save a lot of cash.
What about either of those two watches interests you? Which features are 'gotta have its'?

I suspect a lot of people getting 920's would be shocked to see how much more they are paying for a small number features versus the 310."





The money is why I haven't purchased either yet. I want the best bang for my buck. I have not had a new training device in quite some time. I use MapMyRun, MapMyRide, and I have a PEAR. The swimming aspect is what appeals to me the most...and a device that can do all three disciplines. I've always wanted one device that could do all three. If the 310 can handle the swimming then I will check that out for sure. Thank you.

Edited by luv2bhealthy 2014-12-10 1:38 PM


2014-12-10 1:42 PM
in reply to: luv2bhealthy

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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
Originally posted by luv2bhealthy

"While getting the newest, shiniest thing might be a factor in this purchase as a motivation tool, you might be able to sneak by with nearly all the features you need and save a lot of cash.
What about either of those two watches interests you? Which features are 'gotta have its'?

I suspect a lot of people getting 920's would be shocked to see how much more they are paying for a small number features versus the 310."





The money is why I haven't purchased either yet. I want the best bang for my buck. I have not had a new training device in quite some time. I use MapMyRun, MapMyRide, and I have a PEAR. The swimming aspect is what appeals to me the most...and a device that can do all three disciplines. I've always wanted one device that could do all three. If the 310 can handle the swimming then I will check that out for sure. Thank you.


I had a 310 (at least 2). It is a very good watch. It does not do the pool swim metrics which I personally like a lot.
2014-12-10 2:00 PM
in reply to: marcag

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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
Yes, the 310 looks to be primarily a running watch. I guess I could get just a Finis Tempo Trainer, but the allure of having all in one device is what's pulling me in...
2014-12-10 2:16 PM
in reply to: luv2bhealthy

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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
Yup, swimming metrics is the big downside.
310 - awesome base watch
910 - for $50: adds swimming metrics, wonky (for some) baro alt, better PM metrics
920 - for $300: adds activity tracking, running dynamics, IQ apps, phone integration, better swim metrics

2014-12-10 2:19 PM
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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
Originally posted by marcag

also : check out DC Rainmaker's blog


Thank you for this. I just checked out his blog and am now considering the Suunto Ambit2 S. Doing research on this watch. Better price and while it doesn't do as much as the other two watches, it will do enough of what I need at a better price. BUT, I am willing to spend more IF one of the other watches would serve me better. Or perhaps the Suunto Ambit3 which is $400 and has similar features as the Polar and Garmin! Decisions, decisions!!!

Edited by luv2bhealthy 2014-12-10 2:25 PM
2014-12-10 2:28 PM
in reply to: dfroelich

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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
Originally posted by dfroelich

Yup, swimming metrics is the big downside.
310 - awesome base watch
910 - for $50: adds swimming metrics, wonky (for some) baro alt, better PM metrics
920 - for $300: adds activity tracking, running dynamics, IQ apps, phone integration, better swim metrics




Very accurate

The 920 does open the door to apps which I believe could be really interesting



2014-12-10 3:32 PM
in reply to: marcag

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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800

I have the 310 and it is a perfectly viable triathlon watch with a usable multsport mode.  It works well in races in that you can switch between s/b/r with a push of the lap button and you can add T1 & T2.  With the speed/cadence sensor it provides adequate metrics on the bike (I think you will need the same sensor for any of the three garmin watches).

For about half of the price of the 920 watch, you could get the 310 + the speed/cadence sensor + the quick release kit.

The 920xt is nice, new, shinny, has more features and will probably be what I replace my 310 with when the time comes.

 

 

 

 

2014-12-10 6:20 PM
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2014-12-11 7:27 AM
in reply to: luv2bhealthy

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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
You will be MUCH happier with a Suunto than a Garmin or Polar, it's not even close. I switched and I will never look back.

The apps for Garmin won't catch on much in my opinion, Garmin has put up too many barriers for developers, and there's no benefit to them to develop on the platform. Suunto has allowed developers to create functions on the watch for years, this is old hat for them. I personally think going the Ambit3 route is best - you get a more limited palette of power meters, but by no means limiting. You can get a PowerTap with a bluetooth cap or a Stages, both good choices. I think the ability to capture heart rate under water (only Suunto does this) is going to prove to be pretty interesting stuff. Very cool times.

Ask me anything about the Suunto, I'm very familiar with it at this point. I *just* published a review of it, for what it's worth:
http://quantitativetriathlon.blogspot.com/2014/12/suunto-ambit-3.ht...
2014-12-11 7:31 AM
in reply to: marcag

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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
Originally posted by dfroelich

Yup, swimming metrics is the big downside.
310 - awesome base watch
910 - for $50: adds swimming metrics, wonky (for some) baro alt, better PM metrics
920 - for $300: adds activity tracking, running dynamics, IQ appsa promise to have apps, phone integration, better swim metrics



fixed that for ya.
2014-12-11 9:48 AM
in reply to: fisherman76

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2014-12-11 10:13 AM
in reply to: Beer League Champ

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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
Yep, and the author of the thread said she was looking at the Suunto Ambit series after reading DCRainmaker's blog. Feather in your cheerios this morning?
2014-12-11 10:35 AM
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Edited by Beer League Champ 2014-12-11 10:38 AM
2014-12-11 10:43 AM
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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
Sorry then - I'm edgy today, been on the phone with too many idiots today.
Thanks for the info about the Polar, I didn't realize! I'll update my review accordingly.
2014-12-11 10:48 AM
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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
Originally posted by fisherman76
you get a more limited palette of power meters, but by no means limiting. You can get a PowerTap with a bluetooth cap or a Stages, both good choices.


Powertap limits your choice of wheelsets and Stages is known to be inaccurate for some. Sounds pretty limiting to me but maybe others are happy with these choices

I have only heard good things about Suunto quality.

Edited by marcag 2014-12-11 10:56 AM
2014-12-11 12:08 PM
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2014-12-11 11:17 PM
in reply to: fisherman76

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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
Thank you and to everyone else who responded to my thread. This is such a big chunk of money that I really do want to get the best option. The DC Rainmaker blog is phenomenal. He is really in-depth. I did not realize there was a brand called Suunto until I read that blog. The only problem with their product is it's currently only for iPhone and not Android until 2015. So your advice would be to go with the 3 instead of the 2. I just know that I want something that helps with the swim. I guess everyone is going to have their preference and have good and bad experiences. I just know that if I am going to spend $400 - $500 on something, I want it to be the best I can get.
2014-12-12 5:42 AM
in reply to: luv2bhealthy

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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
Originally posted by luv2bhealthy

Thank you and to everyone else who responded to my thread. This is such a big chunk of money that I really do want to get the best option. The DC Rainmaker blog is phenomenal. He is really in-depth. I did not realize there was a brand called Suunto until I read that blog. The only problem with their product is it's currently only for iPhone and not Android until 2015. So your advice would be to go with the 3 instead of the 2. I just know that I want something that helps with the swim. I guess everyone is going to have their preference and have good and bad experiences. I just know that if I am going to spend $400 - $500 on something, I want it to be the best I can get.


It is really tough.

Do you have speed sensors on the bike or foot pods on the run ? The reason I ask is the ambit 3 and Polar are Bluetooth only. Some sensors are Ant+ and won't work with these 2 watches. This is where the comment from Fisherman, Fred and I are coming in about power meters, but it also applies to Ant+ sensors. This is a deal breaker for me since my power meter is Ant+. This is too bad because I really like the look of the Polar.

If you have a power meter in your future take this into consideration, if not, it's not that big a deal.



2014-12-13 10:06 AM
in reply to: luv2bhealthy

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Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800

I have the V800.  I was not such a diligent shopper as you.  I did read DC Rainmaker's review.  I don't know much about the Garmin 910 or 920.  I needed to replace my watch and just bought it.  I have had mine about a month now.  I also got the Polar Bluetooth speed and cadence sensor and recently ordered the footpod.  

I have been using the activity monitor features of the V800.  It monitors sleep and steps automatically.  It beeps at you if you sit too long.  I have not been training hard (sick and hurt) since I got it but I think recovery monitoring might help me too.  I need to do the self assessment tests to calibrate it because with the default settings, even a fairly modest 3 mile jog puts me 150% of my "daily goal".  With some effort on my part to learn to use it correctly, I think the monitoring and training assessment will be useful.

I think this Polar watch is better built that my previous Polar watches.  It seems pretty solid and it looks ok, but wearing one does make a statement, "I am a techno-geeky exercise nut."  To get the benefit of activity monitoring, you have to wear it all the time.  I don't mind wearing it.

At this point, software is pretty good.  I don't have any issues to report.  I don't use a power meter on the bike personally.  Speed, cadence are enough for me.  My only issue is that the Bontrager Duotrap that I have on one of my bikes is not Bluetooth compatible.  The Duotrap speed and cadence sensor slips into a compartment made into the chain stay of my Trek bike.  I have the older model Duotrap.  The newer Duotrap-S is compatible with Bluetooth but does not fit into my frame.  I keep hoping that Bontrager would introduce a Bluetooth model for my bike.

 

TW

 

2015-07-13 8:43 AM
in reply to: 0


2

Stamford, Connecticut
Subject: RE: Garmin 920xt vs Polar V800
Originally posted by fisherman76

You will be MUCH happier with a Suunto than a Garmin or Polar, it's not even close. I switched and I will never look back.

The apps for Garmin won't catch on much in my opinion, Garmin has put up too many barriers for developers, and there's no benefit to them to develop on the platform. Suunto has allowed developers to create functions on the watch for years, this is old hat for them. I personally think going the Ambit3 route is best - you get a more limited palette of power meters, but by no means limiting. You can get a PowerTap with a bluetooth cap or a Stages, both good choices. I think the ability to capture heart rate under water (only Suunto does this) is going to prove to be pretty interesting stuff. Very cool times.

Ask me anything about the Suunto, I'm very familiar with it at this point. I *just* published a review of it, for what it's worth:
http://quantitativetriathlon.blogspot.com/2014/12/suunto-ambit-3.ht...


Respectfully, both the Suunto Ambit 3 and the Polar V800 capture heart rate while swimming, though they use different approaches to doing so. Polar's issue is that until recently, the V800 was not able to capture other swim metrics (that is, when it was released, the only thing it could capture while swimming was heart rate data). I agree with the point others made that Polar has been slow to deliver on initially promised features; but both the Ambit 3 and V800 capture heart rate data while swimming.

Edited by darkpath 2015-07-13 8:45 AM
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