Polar A5 Heart Rate Monitor

DESCRIPTION

  • Determine your fitness level using the Self Walk Test by Polar and the UKK Institute
  • Follow the calories you consume during exercise (OwnCal)
  • Calculate your Body Mass Index (BMI)
  • Large easy-to-read display
  • Personal target heart rate zones
  • Manual and automatic heart rate limit settings
  • Heart rate Zone Pointer with alarm function
  • Shows your heart rate, exercising time and average heart rate

  • USER REVIEWS

    Showing 1-10 of 15  
    [Aug 29, 2003]
    Brent
    Cross Country Rider

    OVERALL
    RATING
    2
    VALUE
    RATING
    3
    Strength:

    Good basic fucntions. Easy to figure out without the manual.

    Weakness:

    Very prone to interference.

    When it works, it works fine. Unfortuately it is very prone to interference from high voltage lines. Its just about useless for me in the city. Between the power lines and the high voltage lines for the trains, I can't get a good reading for very long. It consistently reads in the low 200's near power lines. It works well for me mountain biking. I would not buy this model again.

    Similar Products Used:

    None, first one.

    [Oct 16, 2005]
    Pat
    Weekend Warrior

    OVERALL
    RATING
    5
    VALUE
    RATING
    4
    Strength:

    It works fine - exactly as designed. I've NEVER had any complaints on the reliability or accuracy, except my battery has finally died. This is the leader in HRM's. Go buy one. I've never tried the the 510's or other bike computer types, but that seems pretty cool.

    Weakness:

    Someone's wireless alarm system makes it read 250bpm as I pass their house. Their website stinks when you try to find information on battery replacement.

    I'd buy another one in a heartbeat, but I'd upgrade to the bike computer model.

    [Mar 08, 2002]
    Carl Horton
    Cross Country Rider

    OVERALL
    RATING
    3
    VALUE
    RATING
    3
    Strength:

    I have used the A5 everyday for about a year. I found the HR readings to be exactly the same as other machines at gyms and even at a doctors office. It has never produced irregular rates or values outside of an expected range. It appears to be extremely accurate. While I have no way of verifying the calorie expenditure function, it does seem to be about right. It typically produces results about 25% lower than gym equipment, which have always seemed too high to me.

    Weakness:

    The watch has reset itself at least once a week since I bought it. I use it in mostly moderate temperatures, 40-80 deg F., so I do not believe that its constant resetting has anything to do with cold temps. When I use it in the cold (10-40 deg F) it doesn't reset itself any more often than in warmer temps. While I don't really care what time of day is on the watch, it is time consuming to always reset my weight, birthdate, height, and other required settings.

    Works great when it works.

    Similar Products Used:

    none

    [Oct 02, 2003]
    Carlos

    OVERALL
    RATING
    5
    VALUE
    RATING
    5
    Strength:

    Not that expensive, accurate,comfty.

    Weakness:

    None

    It has worked fine for the last 6 months, no false readings or blank screen at all.

    It works for me for mtb and running.

    No Problem.

    Similar Products Used:

    Vetta hr50 other polar hrm

    [Feb 01, 2002]
    Jim Dover
    Racer

    OVERALL
    RATING
    1
    VALUE
    RATING
    1
    Strength:

    Nice looks, it is easy to read and set up, calorie counter is kind of cool.
    I've used it during SPINNING classes and it works great.

    Weakness:

    Unreliable readings on the road/trail.

    DON'T TAKE IT OUTDOORS AND DON'T BUY THIS HRM! As soon as I wore it on a road ride today, I discovered what a piece of crap it is. Within 2 minutes it started reading over 200 bpm when I wasn't even working hard yet. For the rest of the ride, it would regularly register over 200 bpm--even when coasting. It did periodically register an apparently accurate heart rate, but it wouldn't last long.
    As neat looking as it is and as well as it functions indoors, the A5 is TOTALLY unreliable in the real world of cycling. By extention, I'm not sure that I can trust any of the new Polar line--I've already had troubles with the S210 and just sent it back for warranty repairs.

    Similar Products Used:

    Polar s210, Cardiosport Exel Sport (should have never sold that one)

    [Jan 11, 2002]
    Walter Stewart
    Cross Country Rider

    OVERALL
    RATING
    3
    VALUE
    RATING
    2
    Strength:

    This watch has some basic features that make it useful for training purposes - i.e., average heart rate, zone alarms, and zone displays.

    Weakness:

    Lots of features such as Body Mass Index, Calorie Count, and Fitness Test that are not useful for Heart Rate Training.

    I got my A5 for Christmas, just returned it for the Polar S410. It has some features that might be useful for someone interested in exercising to lose weight, but not for training. If you want to buy this product for training, save some money and buy a HRM with fewer features.
    You might add a couple of Chilli's to Value if you're paying in US Dollars!

    Similar Products Used:

    Polar S410

    [Jan 02, 2002]
    Randee

    OVERALL
    RATING
    4
    VALUE
    RATING
    4

    Well here's the thing - I have no issues with the function of the watch or the accuracy of the readings. My third time wearing it, the plastic piece used to secure the elastic band to the chest transmitter snapped. On the bright side, CHPONLINE sent me out a new one the next day no questions asked.

    So it's kind of early to review - so there may be a follow up.

    Oh yeah, and a necessity is The Heart Rate Monitor Book for Outdoor and Indoor Cyclist by Sally Edwards.

    [Nov 12, 2002]
    Slamigo
    Weekend Warrior

    OVERALL
    RATING
    4
    VALUE
    RATING
    4
    Strength:

    Looks good, easy to use, chest strap is almost unnoticeable and very unobtrusive. I got mine for $100 CAD ($60 US) because I had just purchased a treadmill at the same time.

    Weakness:

    Seems that after reading other reviews, that there may be some reliability/longevity issues, but I have not experienced anything like that yet. (I will repost if my A-5 needs to worked on.)

    I think that people have to keep in mind that this HRM is intended to be used mainly indoors and also by beginners. This is my first HRM and so far I am pleased with its performance. Right now, I am using this device as an aid to help get back in shape. I use it mainly on my treadmill where I can control all of the variables (distance/speed/HR/etc). I don't know how effective this unit would be on the trails. Obviously, if I decide to pursue using a HRM to train seriously, I would upgrade to a more capable piece of equipment. But based on what this unit is designed for, (beginners), and the excellent price that I paid, I have to give it 4 Flaming Chilis.

    Similar Products Used:

    None.

    [Oct 19, 2003]
    TDOG

    OVERALL
    RATING
    4
    VALUE
    RATING
    4
    Strength:

    Simple, reliable, comfortable.

    Weakness:

    I'm a little leary of having to send it in to Polar for battery replacement. It will give crazy readings if the chest strap is not positioned the right way.

    This was on sale at REI....and so far has been fun to use, relatively hassle free, and durable. I MTB 4-5 days a week and was expecting this unit to fail from all the funky single track...but it has stood the test of time( a full summer) For the price, it is what I was looking for.

    [Jul 29, 2003]
    Dan
    Racer

    OVERALL
    RATING
    4
    VALUE
    RATING
    5
    Strength:

    The product has been 97% accurrate for the last year I've used it. I wear it almost daily as a watch and about 5x's a week for running or cycling. It keeps good time and a consistent HR reading.

    Weakness:

    The monitor has wigged out in the past and temporarily given me HR readings in the 200's, for less than 30 seconds. Also, it has gone blank twice requiring me to reposition the battery in the watch.

    The HR monitor/watch has had a few glitches over the last year and a half but nothing that wasn't easily fixed, although annoying. The monitor continues to work, for the most part, in all its functions and I would buy it again!

    Similar Products Used:

    None

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