|Polar S625X Heart Rate Monitor Watch
|List Price: $389.95
Our Price: $285.00
You Save: $104.95 (27%)
The world"s first Running Computer to provide accurate heart rate, running pace and distance information right on your wrist. It delivers continuous running speed without relying on where satellites are positioned with the use of a special footpad that detects how your foot travels. With enhanced training tools and features like altitude and ascent for route profile, and the Polar OwnOptimizer recovery test-- the S625X lets you put the power of information to work for you. Also compatible with all Polar cycling sensors to give you the ultimate training tool.. Wireless ECG accurate heart rate. Avg, and Max heart rate of total exercise. Avg, and Max heart rate of each lap. Automatic Lap recording (up to 99 laps). Recovery measurement (HR/time). Exercise date. Altitude and ascent. Speed/Pace and Distance. Target pace with alarms. Trip Odometer. Run Distance. Time and distance based interval timer. Running route elevation profile.
The Polar S625X provides runners, triathletes, and coaches with a complete tool to measure performance and workout intensity. With the optional cycling and power sensors and enhanced training tools like the Polar OwnOptimizer recovery test, plus altitude and ascent for route profile, the S625X lets you cross train and put the power of information to work for you. It includes the S1 foot pod, a shoe-mounted sensor that continually relays computed velocity and distance information to a specially-adapted, wristwatch-based display. You'll be able to get data on total speed and distance, speed displayed in pace or kmph/mph as well as a distance-based interval timer.
It comes with the S625X wrist receiver, a transmitter that's worn comfortably around your chest, and an elastic strap to hold the transmitter in place. The wristwatch-like receiver features a large display that includes 12/24-hour time of day, alarm, and stopwatch. It provides readings of maximum heart rate of total exercise, average/maximum heart rate of each lap, recovery measurement (by either heart rate divided or time), and interval timers.
You can also better assess your training data using the included Polar Precision Performance (PPP) 4.0 software when you transfer data from the monitor to the PC via a wireless infrared (IR) connection. This feature requires a PC with an IR window or you will need a separate Polar IR interface.
The OwnCal feature shows your energy expenditure during one exercise session as well as your accumulated kilocalories during several exercise sessions. It also allows you to set daily and weekly exercise goals in terms of calorie expenditure. The OwnIndex feature will determine your fitness level, track your improvements, and provide motivation. Polar's OwnCode technology blocks unwanted signals from other heart rate monitors, ensuring disturbance-free transmission of your heart rate data.
The S625X's visual and audible alarms alert you when you reach your target heart rate zone. The Time in Target Zone feature calculates the percentage of maximum heart rate or beats per minute in your personal target zone. You can use this feature together with the Total Exercise Time to determine the effectiveness of your exercise program.
- Displays your heart rate as beats per minute and percentage of maximum heart rate, average heart rate, and exercise duration
- S1 foot pod shoe-mounted sensor that continually relays computed velocity and distance information to monitor
- Runners' data including total speed and distance, speed displayed in pace or kmph/mph
- Wirelessly sends exercise data to PC via infrared connection
- Allows you to set 5 exercise sets for interval training with HR target zones and recovery calculation
- Records a complete file and five summary files of the exercises
- Predicts your maximal oxygen uptake
- Reduces possible interference from other heart rate monitors
- Target heart rate zones with audible and visual alarm
- UpLink feature enables download of exercise set from Polar web site
- Large easy-to-read display with backlighting and split screen
- 24-hour clock with day/week indicator and stopwatch
- 1.5-year average battery life
- Water resistant to 30 meters
What's in the Box?
S625X heart rate monitor watch unit, S1 foot pod, wireless transmitter, elastic strap, battery (built-in CR2032 lithium cell), Polar Precision Performance (PPP) 4.0 software, printed instructions
2-year limited warranty
Polar heart rate monitors are precision instruments; consumers are not advised to change their own battery. Polar recommends that all service be done by an authorized Polar Service Center which will include a warranty for 90 days on repairs and 6 months for batteries.
- Heart rate monitor designed to help you hit training and fitness goals in multiple exercises
- S1 foot pod relays computed velocity and distance information to monitor
- 5 exercise sets for interval training with HR target zones and recovery calculation
- 24-hour clock with day/week indicator and stopwatch
- Large easy-to-read, backlit display with split screen; water resistant to 30 meters
- It works
Works great. The distance is very accurate. I run the same routes over and over and it always comes up with the same mileage.
It is very well made. The software is functional though the UI is a little weird. I have used the Polar software for three years and they continue to update it....more info
- If it only worked as promised
I've been using Polar 625x for over a year now. It could be such a great tool for monitoring exercise if only there was a reliable connections between the transimitter and the monitor. Often in the middle of the exercise I will notice abnormal readings (too high or no readings at all) that come back to normal in a few minutes or so. There does not seem to be any outside interference. Cleaning the straps of the transmitter does not help, nor do new batteries. Tech support was not of much help either. The problem has become so annoying that I am investing in a different heart monitor. ...more info
- Polar S625X is an Essential tool for any runner
Though I sometimes question the accuracy of the distance (and hence pace) there's no doubt that this has helped my training. I'm aiming for a marathon and usually use it in pace and distance mode. This helps me to know if I'm on target for 7.00 min mile; the autolap give me the time for the last mile and the time so far. If I'm running a new route I know precisely (~1% out) how much I've run and the heart rate monitor tells me if I'm actually over-exerting myself or just feeing lazy.
I still have a lot to learn - I haven't spent any time using the zones function but I'll do that after the marathon.
Honestly though, I never seem to analyze my runs on my PC - my main use for this equipment is Pace/speed and distance.
I'm also considering purchasing the Nokia 5140 phone (I need to change my mobile anyway), though since I don't do much post run analysis on my PC there's not much need.
(One weird thing is that a run given as say, 7 miles on the watch is given as 6.5 on the PC.) To elabourate on the accuracy, the last race I did the watch was reading 4.04 when I crossed the 4 mile line on the road, however remember that this line was drawn by someone who measured using a car - they would have driven closer to the middle of the road and therfore possible covered less than I actually did. ...more info
- Very practical and useful
I trained for the 04 Atlanta half marathon with this device.
It gave me alot of useful information before the race, like
- My max sustainable heart rate is 180.
- My mind convinces me that I am tired at mile 9 eventhough my body is capable of more output. I realize this when I see my heart rate at only 160.
- Exactly what mileage I run and the pace DURING the run, together with the heart rate. This information is all on the screen without you having to fiddle with buttons during the run. The watch also automatically beeps every 1 mile and tells you your pace!
- The watch's distance measurement did not need any calibration before the first use! Other devices are normally very off before the first use. I verified this with a treadmill and with the mile markers during my race.
The download to computer feature is very easy to use. It chronicles all my runs in a very user friendly program. The data is stored in a text file in case if you wanted to graph it differently.
The heart and distance sensors are very unobtrusive. I especially surprised by how comfortable the heart sensor was.
I already convinced 2 other work mates to buy it and they swear by it.
My only wish is that the watch logged temperature! Temperature has a substantial effect on my run and I would have like the ability to analyse it.
[Note that my first half marathon was done in 2:02:35. I don't consider my self a runner and I feel that this watch together with alot of sweat made it possible.]
Look at the profile of the half marathon run at
- Best training tool available
The Polar S625X does everything I have wanted a HRM to do for some time now. I am a triathlete and always wonder: "How far have I run?". Now you know. It does everything that the S725 does with the added running info.
There is nothing wrong with the build quality or the interface (if you are willing to read the manual).
Only buy it if you are going to use all the features. Without connecting it to a computer and following a well structured training programme it is definitely not worth it. Rather then opt for a cheaper model and upgrade when you see the need....more info
- Great Running Machine
I bought mine on November 2004 right after have finished a 10k race. As my ultimate goal was to run well a marathon(my first one) I started my training using the 625x. From day one i have been saving all training information in my Laptop. The Infrared connection and software works flawlessly. First the watch has an auto lap function, for every mile it automatically records the lap time, second it gives me temperature and elevation( very useful for hill training). I could also set the timer to remind me of drinking water every 20 minutes and some other cool features like creating your own interval trainning and check your VO2max. Using the software I clearly can see my progress since I started. I'm really happy with my purchase and I would recommend to everybody looking for a great running tool. Just make sure you calibrate the food pod to match your foot stride....more info
- Polar S625X
This Heart Rate Monitor was a disappointment. First the heart rate monitor didn't work; it would suddenly record 220 bpm for a minute or so several times a workout. It also was so difficult to program that I spent more time cursing at it than using it. (I have a masters in engineering so I'm not stupid.) Downloading with the IR was also finicky, and half my workouts either weren't recorded or were lost.
I gave it 3 stars instead of 1 because there are some cool features like the ability to measure your fitness level (although in my case it said I was above an elite/olympic athlete when in fact I am about a 2 on a scale from 1 to 10 in fitness). But my unit was probably a dud. If it worked, and if you have the patience to study the menus for hours, you might like it.
I got a Garmin 405 instead and it rocks! It worked immediately, and is totally intuitive. Nothing but a big smile on my fact every time I use it. (The Garmin 305 is just about as good as the 405.) And those have GPS which I thought I didn't need until I got it and realized how great it was. ...more info
- Running without it is like driving a car without a dashboard
Every once in a while, a new technology comes along that completely changes the way we behave. Some obvious examples over the past 10 years have been the web and pocketable cellphones. And now for the runner, it's a device like the Polar s625x.
There are two really enjoyable aspects with using this three-piece watch, heart rate monitor, foot pod combo. The first is while you run: you can actually see your approximate pace together with your heart rate. You can also toggle between a few different displays on the fly, such as distance covered, calories burned, speed, lap time. Before, all this stuff was complete guesswork. I never really knew how far I ran and I always tended to average up. For me, this watch forced reality to set in.
Perhaps equally as fascinating is the after-run. When you get home, you can easily load up the data gathered during your run to your PC via an infrared link (If you don't use a laptop, you'll probably need to buy the IR accessory although there also seems to be some way to transfer the data via a sound emission from the watch.) It's truly amazing to view a chart with your running data such as heart rate, pace, altitude and temperature. So you see in an Excel-style line chart how your heart rate speeds up as you are working up a hill. Or how your body responds as the temperature increases. Over time, you can track your progress. And you can even e-mail the data so you can easily transfer it to another PC. The Polar software installed easily and works well. And you can use the Windows PC program (no Mac version available it seems) as an interface for the watch, so you can input things such as date, time, and personal info using the PC and upload it back to the watch. This way you can avoid using the watch's little one-inch screen to put this data in.
It's almost not fair to complain about the device considering what a leap in technology it's been for me. I would have killed to have something like this when I was running high school track way back during the Reagan administration. But the device is not perfect.
While it is solidly built -- I would say it's almost of military-grade quality: big, bulky and solid --, I do have an immediate complaint. When I needed to replace the battery on the heart rate monitor for the first time (this is the belt-like item that you strap around your chest), the cover was on so tightly that I stripped down the groove on the cap with a coin. I then had to pry it off with a small screw driver damaging it further. It shouldn't cost much to replace the battery cap, but you never know with parts*. Anyway, it's still working fine.
The foot pod is bigger than I wish. It's not something that you would walk around with while shopping for example. Fortunately, it's easy to remove and put back on as you can leave on the bracket that holds the pod. This bracket sits underneath the shoelaces. The weight of the foot pod is not noticeable, at least to me. I wear various styles of the Asics Gel shoes, but perhaps with a much lighter shoe, the contrast would be greater.
The biggest issue I have is the accuracy of the device. Out of the box you will get about 95% accuracy, but for some reason, I just wasn't able to calibrate it to get more accurate results. I ran around a 400-meter track a number of times with the watch in calibration mode. It showed each lap as 390 meters (although I know at times it showed I was running too much) and then it should have figured out the formula to adjust that up to 400 meters. But then the distance measurement was even further off. After a few attempts of doing 1.2 kilometer runs on the track to calibrate the watch, I tried a manual adjustment given the distance I knew was covered and distance the watch thought was covered. That didn't help either. It seems like 94 - 96% accuracy is something at least I'm going to have to live with. This does make quite a difference when you are checking your pace at a race. I was really hoping that the device could monitor my lap times with great accuracy, for example, at one kilometer, one mile, or even 400 meter intervals. Note that when you move the pod to another shoe, it will change to accuracy of the device again.
The usability of the device is also something that can use some tweaking. First, the manual is written as if people don't have anything else to do with their lives other than use the watch. It's full of terms which at least are unfamiliar to me. For example, here is something that was highlighted as being important in the manual: "Your choice of HR, % of HRmax or Pace limit type in limits 1 determines the way they will be displayed in all other limits. Only one limit type can be selected in an exercise set." I've had the watch for a number of months now and have actually read the manual a few times, but I have no idea what that means. There was a glossary in the back listing these terms, but it was all so much work to understand. On the watch, you are never quite sure what the buttons are going to do. It's really takes some figuring out. But the real basic functions, the ones that people really want to use, were easy to get going right out of the box.
Some practical advice: As anyone who's seen the movie "The Green Mile" knows, the conductivity power of water can't be underrated. You really have to wet down the electrode areas to get the heart rate measurement. A few times I forgot to do this and the monitor didn't transmit anything to the watch. When the device shows no heart beat, I was thinking like one of the Marx Brothers: either I'm dead or the heart rate monitor isn't working.
Other devices you might want to check out include the Garmin Forerunner 301 Trainer, which uses GPS technology for better measurement accuracy (if you run in open areas), and cool devices from Suunto, who seems to be the other leading maker of cool HRM watches. There must be something about the cold arctic Finnish air that give Polar and Suunto the edge in making these devices.
(*UPDATE: After contacting Polar support about the damaged battery holder, they quickly sent me a replacement part without any questions.)...more info
- SX625 some great aspects, some not so great aspects
I have been using this watch for about 2 years, mostly for training and for during trail ultramarathons. I have mixed feeling about this product. I had the opportunity to trade it in for another unit and decided to keep it. Part of the reason I kept it was that it took me some effort to figure out how to download the data using the IR device. I did not want to restart the process with the microphone/speaker system. The manual is poor. Let me comment separately on each component/feature.
Wrist unit: It is big and ugly, but you can see that from the photos. However, it sits comfortably on my wrist. For a while, I used a cheap Sigma HRM that slid down my wrist and chafed my skin. I have used my Polar in several 100 mile runs with good comfort. The display is great. It provides heart rate plus two configurable fields. These two fields can read time of day, total stopwatch time, lap time, elevation, total elevation gain, etc and are easily changed. The elevation features work quite well. The controls are easy to use but difficult to learn how to configure.
Chest strap: This is the most comfortable chest strap I have used. It does not slide or rub. If I wet it before putting it on, it always works right away. My old Sigma had problems with slipping and starting. The battery is easy to replace
Foot pod: The foot pod distance readings vary by about +/- 10% on the same route on different days. It seems to vary most with running speed. It goes through batteries rather quickly and has problems when the battery voltage drops just a little bit. It would not work with my rechargable batteries. I don't use it. If accurate distance is important, I suggest looking at GPS units.
IR download device: I bought a cheap IR interface on ebay for about $7 including shipping. It works well.
Software: The software is clunky and difficult to use. The documentation is not helpful. It took me a rather long time to figure out how to download the data from the wrist unit. (Note that I am a highly trained engineer and natural nerd.) The software tries to upgrade everytime I run it. If the computer is not connected to the internet, the software throws errors. If I am connected to the internet, the upgrades always fail. Thus, I make sure to disconnect before starting the software. The graphs on the software are usable, but poor. If I really want to look at the data closely, I export it to another program.
I have not used the limits features or testing options...more info
- Overpriced & User Hostile
This watch is very complicated to program and the user manual provides the absolute minimum of guidance. In other words, you are on your own as far as programming this watch for your individual exercise needs. You will have to waste a lot of time on every aspect of this watch from setup to regular usage. Even downloading data to the computer is a hit or miss challenge which works as often as it doesn't. Also, this watch is very inconvenient for everyday usage b/c it has too many parts. It's much more convenient to have a gps watch which eliminates the foot pod and leaves only the heart rate device as the one xtra thing u have to remember to put on. Additionally, it's insanely overpriced for such an old and obsolete model. In fact, it costs more now than when I bought it years ago. Yes, years ago, that's how long this model has been out. Lastly, I wish I could have my $ back!!!!...more info
- Functional With A Few Significant Flaws
The Polar S625x Heart Rate Monitor Watch is a sophisticated piece of equipment that the manufacturer refers to as a "running/cycling computer", and rightly so. It is a heart rate monitor, distance pedometer, altimeter, thermometer (max/min temp for a session), and chronograph. It calculates and displays running speed (min/mile or mile/hour) on-the-fly. It can be programmed to alert you with audible beeps if you fall below the target zone for heart rate or speed at selected intervals. I won't get into the capabilities of this watch since the user manual is available for download at the Polar site. But I will mention a couple of drawbacks:
Like many reviewers have pointed out, programming this watch is complicated. Although the user manual has a Road Map that shows how the hierarchical menus are laid out, it is hard to decipher what each cryptic menu title stands for, much less understand the functions it encompasses. Be prepared to spend hours studying the manual, which provides minimal information and instructions. Some features take a little figuring out by playing around with the watch.
Bad Software (Polar Pro Trainer)
This is a big one. The software is slow and clunky. The calendar display refreshes and flickers with just about every mouse click - a real annoyance!
The usefulness of the software is limited to giving you a graphical plot of speed, altitude, and distance vs. time. The interpretation of the data is left entirely to you. Fair enough.
But the software doesn't let you superimpose the graphs from multiple sessions, so you won't be able to analyze how well you've performed in one session with respect to another and see how you've progressed or regressed.
It would be nice if they had included some analysis tools that help you gauge your performance and offer suggestions for improvement. The software is therefore little more than an exercise journal.
The software does have one redeeming feature: it lets you export your exercise data to a tab delimited data text file that you can simply drag and drop it into excel to see the tabulated data, which contains a column for time (increments of 5 or more seconds depending how frequent you've set the watch to take data points), distance, and altitude. From the data you can calculate the derived quantities such as speed and cumulative distance traveled at each instance in time. I export my data for some of my sessions so I can plot and superimpose several sessions on a graph to see how I've progressed.
The watch looks absolutely hideous! This is a minor point if all you're concerned about is functionality.
It's way overpriced for such an antiquated albeit still very functional model. Again, a minor point if you're looking for functionality and price is not a concern.
I considered getting an exercise watch with GPS but decided against it because 1) The GPS receiver takes time to lock on to satellites. 2) I use my exercise watch on my treadmill, so the GPS feature won't work in monitoring distance. On the other hand, GPS-based watches give you a VERY accurate measurement of distance.
Now, I'm having second thoughts, having read some very positive reviews on a Garmin model, which is much easier on your pocketbook. It's something you might want to look into too.
In my judgment, the Polar S625X Heart Rate Monitor Watch is the best value of all the high-end models that Polar makes. It even has a couple of features that models that cost more than twice as much do not have. For example, it has an altimeter, which I find very handy on hikes, and which Polar has decided to omit from some of the high end models. Visit the Polar site to see a side by side comparison of all its models.
Bottom line: unless you can get past the non-intuitive user interface and bad aesthetics of the Polar S625X Heart Rate Monitor Watch, AND you have more sophisticated software that can help you better analyze your performance (isn't that the whole point of getting an exercise watch?), you will do well to look at other alternatives.
- The running function is rubbish
I bought this useless model for one main reason - the pace function. I wanted to know how fast I was running at any point in time so I could train where I wanted without worrying about kilometre markers. Well, my pace seems to vary from 3:50 - 7:50 and out to 17:00 - all while running at pretty much the same clip! I am an experienced runner and it is maddening to have this watch tell me I am all over the shop.
I've tried all the suggestions - new batteries, swapped feet, different locations - the pace function just does not work well.
Surprisingly, I've found it to be extremely accurate over total distance - within 100m over 10Km.
The foot pod is large and bulky and ugly. It does interfere with your lacing and if you've ever had inflamed tendon problems, steer well clear.
The watch is also very bulky - the largest in Polar's range.
The user interface is classic Polar - completely unintuitive. Be prepared to read and reread the manual.
The 2 stars is for the heart rate function which is the one thing polar seems to do better than anyone else....more info
- Beta Product, Not ready for consumers!!
This is the third polar product I have bought, no problems with the first two. THe 625 X is a real training computer, when it works. Initially everything worked fine, but when the foot pod started asking for battery replacement the problems began. First was the foot pod's on/off switch, got broken. I sent it to the Service Center and got repaired, but stop working again a week later. Then I sent it to the Warranty Center and told me they would send a new one, got the same one, with the same malfunction. Called Customer Service, and after 20 minutes waiting on the line they suggest to replace the battery, no luck. Will keep trying....more info
- Do not try to use with Vista
This is an incredible piece of equipment, when you have Xp or an earlier version of windows. Polar states it is compatible with Vista, but I assure you you will have serious compatiblility issues if you try, up to and including lock ups and data loss. I have used this device with XP and the transfer of data is super easy. The only drawback to the user interface is the initial frustration of learning how to select between cycling and running modes and then learning how to toggle between options while exercising. I have owned much stronger HRM's, but this one, although sluggish, works pretty well.
In the end. If you have Vista, you will pay a high price for a device and add ons for your device, spend hours trying to figure out why it just does not really work and then you will be stuck with a $500+ system that you can only use as data storage, without the benefit of data transfer or the nice software to track your progress.
Until Polar decides to step up and deal with the Vista issue, I would warn anyone against a Polar product.
- EXCELLENT HRM that will take 4 to 6 hours to learn.
I LOVE my Polar S625X Heart Rate Monitor... and I'm VERY picky about the design and implementation of techno gadgets. There are only three things I've thought of that it could do better.
First, the temperature sensor is on the wrist side of the watch. So, when I was running and the air temperature was about 16 degrees fahrenheit, the sensor reported 65 degrees. Since I know of no good reason for this design decision, I have to call this a silly and unfortunate design error.
Second, the accelerometor could probably very easily provide a pedometer reading, i.e., "How many steps did that run require?" It doesn't... at least as far as I can tell.
Third, the menu system appears to be inaccessible during a recording session. That is, you have to stop the recording session to look at or change file information or user information, etc.
But, other than these 3 things, I'm very impressed. (I'd be very very impressed if the pedometer and menu shortcomings mentioned above could be fixed via an EPROM upgrade via the Infra Red port.)
The Polar S625X Heart Rate Monitor is a complex tool. Plan on spending between 4 and 6 hours of concentrated study to learn to use it to its full capability.
And finally, I'd like to add that PC Coach/Biometrics, Inc. shipped on time and provided EXCELLENT technical support when I asked them questions about this HRM. I highly recommend them.
The original battery is still working! That's about 3.5 years of regular usage 2 to 5 times per week!! I'll soon have to replace it. But I'm very happy with the S625X's battery life.
There is one thing I hope the folks at Polar will do for me, however. Wouldn't it be cool if Polar would make a bathroom scale that would interface via wireless to the S625X so that the watch could gather my weight and body mass index info, too?!! ;-)...more info