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3.9 out of 5 stars
Garmin Forerunner 610 Touchscreen GPS Watch With Heart Rate Monitor
Style Name: With Heart Rate MonitorChange
Price:$269.99 + Free shipping with Amazon Prime
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545 of 555 people found the following review helpful
on June 14, 2011
I'm a running gadget head.

I've had several garmins before. I tried to like the 4xx series, but to me it wasn't a big enough step up from my trusty 305.

When the Nike GPS+ came out - I bought that the first day, then returned it the next. It just wasn't accurate (perhaps because of a weak GPS receiver).

I saw the 610 was coming out in time for the Boston marathon. I tried to get one at the expo, but they were gone in minutes.

So I waited. A month later, I finally got my hands on one.

I've been running with it daily for the past 3+ weeks.

What I like:

the looks. I can actually wear it as an everyday watch. It's a little slimmer than the 4xx series, and has a longer battery life. Looks very nice. Not quite as 'cool' looking as the Nike GPS - but no where near as clunky as the 305.

the touch screen. this has a true touch screen, that works with gloves (I tested that). You can drag your finger across the screen to change views and tap to select. You press harder than on an iphone or ipad, which took a few minutes to get used to, but it works great. Very intuitive. And unlike the 4xx - the screen doesn't go haywire when it gets wet.

the vibrate for laps / notifications. I set mine to auto-lap every mile, and could feel the vibration on my wrist each time it lapped. very nice.

the 'tailor-ability' of the screen. ok - I probably made up that word, but this is more like the 305 than the 4xx. You can have up to 4 metrics on your screen and tailor to whatever you want. You can have multiple screens set up, and just tap on the dial as you're running and it'll flip between them.

getting wet. the 610 can in theory, survive under a meter of water for an hour. I was always nervous running with my 305 in the rain. I'd heard stories of people who'd had theirs die on them in those conditions. That shouldn't be a factor now. And again - the touch screen works fine in the wet.

the wireless transfer of data to your computer. I'm a computer geek and this is VERY cool ! It comes with a little USB dongle that you pair initially and then leave plugged into your computer, and then when you get near your computer with the watch - it automatically connects and uploads direct to gamin connect. It works very well. On the 305 I had to manually upload. No longer an issue.

foot pod - ok - so this works on others too, but I've got the garmin foot pod as well. You can set it up for accuracy while you're running outside with you GPS to calibrate it, and then be able to capture and log miles done on the treadmill in bad weather.

the new virtual racer feature. It remembers previous runs of yours - perhaps your fastest loop of a course you regularly run. You can then race yourself virtually, or plug in pace goals etc - it shows you a stick character and you in front or behind and by how much. And even cooler - you can download runs from other people from on line, and race those.

What I Don't like

there's a bug in the software - at least that's what I'm hoping it is. When you stop the watch - perhaps at traffic lights - then start it up again. The GPS signal is lost and the accuracy with it. For a few seconds it tries to get back in sync. This means that you often lose 0.01 - 0.03 of a mile. You can test this by making 'GPS Accuracy' one of the metrics on the display. When you stop and start - you'll see the accuracy balloon. It doesn't happen every time, but it happens enough to cause concerns. HOWEVER - there seems to be a manual fix. When you start the watch - a message appears on the screen saying 'timer started'. That stays for 5 seconds or so then disappears. It's during that period the accuracy goes wonky. What you can do, is immediately tap the message when it appears. It disappears (it's a touch screen watch remember), and the accuracy seems to be okay. This is why we think it's a software issue. Hopefully a firmware fix - SOON - will resolve.

the one other minor gripe. Garmin's are never 100% accurate. If you've ever raced with one over a set course - you know the garmin invariably is off. A half marathon might show as 13.25 miles. A full marathon, 26.5 miles. It's too much to be explained by not running perfect tangents. If you're trying to keep a particular pace - this can be annoying. You may think you ran 7.00 min/miles for instance, but find out because of the extra distance - you were actually running 7.05. A way round this on the older garmins was to set the autolap feature to 1.01 miles. That seemed to better line up with the mile markers. Unfortunately the 610 doesn't allow you to do that. You can have 0.95, 1.00, or 1.05. You can't do in 0.01 increments. I've opened a ticket with garmin support. Hopefully this is also resolved in a future software update.

Overall. I love the watch, but until the 2 issues I've mentioned are resolved - it's only getting 4* from me.

Still - I'd buy it again in an instant.
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228 of 238 people found the following review helpful
on December 2, 2011
I purchased this Garmin FR610 watch to replace my old FR305 that I somehow lost, even though a new 305 could be had for only a third of the price of a new FR610 at the time.

There's a lot of things to like about this watch. When turned on, it takes anywhere from a few seconds to a couple minutes to find its location but it reliably does (if you are outdoors). The touchscreen works well and its interface is well thought out. Though the screen may become somewhat unresponsive when it gets wet from rain (as it also happens to smartphones), that hardly matters because important functions that you use while running, such as Start, Stop, and Lap, are handled with the buttons on the right side of the watch. Improvements over the FR305 include a battery charge indicator, so you know how much you have left at the beginning of a practice or race and won't be left stranded while you are at it. When you press the Start/Stop or Lap buttons or use the auto-lap feature, it vibrates in addition to making the conventional beeping sound, which I found useful and reassuring to quickly know that my press of the button did register and therefore did not missed a lap. That feature may be turned off if it's a matter of personal taste. The watch also tells you when you begin a run that the chrono has not been reset to zero when that's the case. With the old 305, I had spoiled the data of many workouts by not noticing that, thus starting a run where I had left off during the previous day's practice. That's a real annoyance that just won't happen with the FR610. A very welcome new feature is that it will shut down its battery-eating GPS tracker after 5 minutes when idle. Then the screen will just show you the time of the day like a regular watch, and the battery will last a very long time (don't know how long but LONG).

As others have reported, this watch tends to overestimate a bit the distance traveled. About 0.5% to 1% by my own estimate. This appears to be systematic rather than random, but I am comfortable with it and do not believe it is excessive. Importantly, the margin if error is noticeably smaller than the FR305 unit I used to have. Anyway, I ran the Philadelphia Marathon last week (without my watch), and could not help but chuckle when I invariably heard a cacophony of its familiar lap-completed sound made by other runners' watches, always one or two or three hundred meters before reaching every mile marker.

In sum, I was very satisfied for spending $415 for the FR610 unit instead of $130 for a FR305 that does basically the same things but is bigger, clunkier, and has an older chip.

Then The Flaw revealed itself. The watch employs an innovative system of magnetic contacts that you connect to the charger by clicking the contacts into place. After a couple of months of use, the charge indicator appeared to convey that it was being discharged, i.e. the charge % decreased while connected to the charger. If allowed to reach 0, the unit wouldn't power up. I thought that maybe the watch was not making good contact with the charger, and inspected the contact points. I had not really bothered to clean and dry the watch during normal use, and it was then that I noticed that the magnetic contacts had collected some dirt and/or rust, I could not tell which. Cleaning with isopropyl alcohol and a microfiber cloth did not help much, perhaps because it is very hard to reach into the small holes where the pins and contacts are located in both the charger and the watch. (Maybe I should have paid more attention to cleaning the watch after use, but then again, I had not subjected it to abuse, other than running with it on my wrist as it was designed for, and also, the cause of the watch's erratic performance could be software-related). Back to the topic, if you are persistent and babysit it while charging, you can manage to get some charge back into it, and it behaves normally for all purposes except when you are trying to charge it. However the problem occurs with increasing recurrence at the time of this writing. I read these reviews and Garmin forums and, to my surprise, this appears to be a common problem.

I like how this watch works and would like to recommend it. But the problem I described is something major, so I strongly advice that you save yourself some aggravation and a few hundred dollars by first researching and finding to your satisfaction that this issue has been addressed by Garmin. Or if you are upgrading from another device, don't sell the old one yet.
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189 of 202 people found the following review helpful
on June 2, 2011
I made this purchase as soon as I heard about the product. I was lucky that the Nike+GPS was out of stock at the time or I would have ended up with one of those... funny how that works. I made the switch from the 405 (first generation) to the 610. I did enjoy the 405 and logged a couple thousand miles with it. My biggest beef was the useless bezel (you probably already know this). The 610 has blown the competition out of the water with the 610. Granted I have only done a few runs and about 25 miles with it, but my initial reaction is WOW. The touch screen works PERFECTLY on runs. Very easy to read and tap through screens. I love the vibrating alert feature (great for us audiophiles), which also can be set to back light. I run often in the darkness of the early morning so the that alert (set at 1 mile auto lap) reminds me to look down and check my split. I did have a few issues upload data to garmin connect, HOWEVER that was probably user error on my part. I decided to download the desktop software and try that out instead of the website. I attempted to send a workout to the watch, which cause the ant agent to "hold" the data and I never did get the watch to take it. I had to uninstall the gconnect and the ant agent. I am back to the garmin connect, which is just fine with me.
The training screens are very customizable, I use two screens of two data fields... pace and distance on field one and ave pace and timer on page two. You can use four fields on a page and you can have a total of three pages... that is A LOT of data. I do not use a heart rate monitor so I cannot comment on that. The watch has WAY more data than I am concerned with, but maybe in the future I could use it. I do have a foot pod, but don't have in connected yet. Honestly, just too lazy to take it off my other shoes and also I don't feel it is necessary. The history setting on the watch is also FANTASTIC. It allows you to review your workouts on the watch, including splits. This great for times I am traveling and work out several times before getting back to my home computer.
I saw a few reviews and a post or two on the garmin site pointing out some gps errors. I am not concerned with those. I don't really KNOW what the most accurate GPS data even is. I have measured routes with google maps, google pedometer, my car, bing maps, garmin, nike+, etc and they are NOT identical so I expect some error. Some days with my 405 I ended up with slightly different distances running the exact same route. I compared data from my 405 to the 610 on the same route and the 610 measure a .02 difference. That could be a starting at a difference place in my driveway, crossing for a car, etc. I am not concerned at all with the GPS accuracy.

Bottom line, I love the watch and would recommend it to others.

Update 12/18/2012
I still love the watch. I am now having major issues charging the watch. It has gone from a minor annoyance to frustration. I used to be able to slap a guitar capo on it while it was charging and it would be fine. Now I have to get the contacts just right, apply the right pressure, in the right direction, and then squeeze it to clamp on a heavy spring loaded carpenter clamp. If I am lucky I can get it to start charging. The watch holds a charge great. It works perfectly on runs, flawless data upload... the CHARGING PROCESS! AGGHHHH. I understand over time all of our beloved electronics bite the dust... but this only has 18 months on it and around 2000 miles. Does anyone know if buying a new charger make the issues go away for awhile?

Update 5/8/2013
I was finally at a point where I could longer get the watch to charge. I emailed Garmin Support and they immediately replaced my charger and bam instant success! The watch is working flawlessly. There has been a time or two when I was having trouble get my data to upload to garmin-connect. I needed to simply have the ant agent forget the device and then repair. This watch is tough to beat. This time around I will take more care to dry my watch before charging. I think corrosion played a major roll in the charger failing.
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48 of 51 people found the following review helpful
on August 22, 2011
Originally I just wanted the 110 for my first ever GPS watch, but more research led me to the 610. To put it bluntly, I loved everything about this watch. But over time as more people got their hands on this watch, I started reading reviews, mainly from Amazon. One of the first complaints was about GPS accuracy; that was fixed by subsequent firmware updates and now the GPS is rock solid. After that, there was a wave of reviews about reverse charging, YIKES! Looked on the Garmin forum board and saw more people talking about reverse charging, YIKES! So now i'm like "Great, first it was the GPS, now its reverse charging". So naturally I thought about if that could happen to me if I purchased the watch. But then I realized that when a product is mass produced, there will always be those very few people who get the bad apples and have issues. And with the advent of the world-wide-web, it has become remarkably easy to find and gawk at these minority groups of people with bad apples while the majority are enjoying their juicy, succulent apples. Then I thought about DC Rainmaker, the guy that did a very in-depth review about this watch; he had NO problems with GPS accuracy or reverse charging, and to make it better, I knew a few close people that actually had the 610 and loved it with no problems. So when I finally got the money, I went for it. It was mildly risky I knew, but I would be taken care of with the warranty if something did go wrong.

A day before the watch arrived in the mail, I tweeted this to DC Rainmaker: "My 610s coming either tomorrow or thurs and have seen reviews about reverse charging. Odds of that happening are slim huh?" His reply: "I think pretty slim. I haven't had it happen yet with either of the watches I've had (dev or prod). Enjoy!" So with all that being said and the theories as to why the watch I buy should be straight, and the affirmation from DC Rainmaker, I felt good about my purchase.

On delivery day, I eagerly got the watch from the mailbox and took it out the package. The black box looked smaller in person and the watch was tucked neatly in the center where you can see it. It was remarkably easy unboxing everything and before I knew it, the watch was on the charger with 50% battery already, nice! It took roughly an hour to charge, pretty fast in my opinion. By this time, I was ITCHING to run. When the sun got lower, I went on my maiden 3 mile run. The watch had GPS signal before I could finish locking my front door, and a few seconds later I was off! At every mile, the watch was set to lap. At each lap, it would vibrate, beep, and flash a message with my mile time on the screen, AWESOME!!! This experience of knowing my mile splits in real time was pure ecstasy. I also loved how I could fit 4 data fields on one screen and tap to look at other pages of info. Also during this run, I had Virtual Partner going at 7min pace so I knew that if I was ahead of him, I was hitting in 6min pace.

So far, i've racked up 10 miles and 4 workouts on this watch and haven't had to charge it yet since i've gotten it. I power it down when i'm not running with it. And don't worry, when its time to turn it on it comes up in a snap with correct time and everything (I love not having to set time!). There's no annoying wait times to get GPS signal either; I have always gotten GPS signal within 30secs.

SUMMARY

1. "Instant Pace" Feature is a joke, keep it on "Average Pace" and you will get more accurate pace calculations.

2. 4 optional data fields on ONE screen is really the biggest plus on this watch, You can go from 4 data fields all the way to just 1.

3. Consider a cheaper option like the Forerunner 210 if you are not a hardcore racer or professional athlete that is data hungry and likes to devote mental strength to crunching numbers or the person who likes to get lost in uncharted territory and needs a GPS navigation system in a watch to take them home. If all you care about is how far, how fast simply get skip the 610, the 410, the 405, and get the 210. Garmin could afford to make this under $300. For now, save your money and stick with this watch until the higher end models drop in price and are more affordable. At the end of the day, the only two data fields you will be most interested in are time and pace. Do not think this watch is THAT much better than more affordable options. Think about it. When it all comes down to the fundamentals, the GPS GARMIN watches are simple satellite receivers that should only display basic tracking information. If it was not for the optional 4 data fields in one screen, contrast touchscreen, and virtual racer/pacer features, this watch would not be worth that much.

******UPDATE JUNE 24th 2012*****
I used to have this watch but sold it nearly full price on eBay, went watchless for months when I had a relapse from running and decided to get the 210 off eBay for nearly $200 less when I decided to run 8.3 miles to and from work 4Xs a week. As a runner, all I need is time, pace, and distance. "Virtual Racer", being able to set location waypoints, and a touchscreen that can show 4 data fields' simultaneously is cool, but if you want to save $195+ and buy only what's necessary, go for more affordable options that will get the job done as well as the 610 without all the fluff! I refuse to update to a newer Garmin until newer models come out and the highe end features become standard and more affordable, which will be at least 1.5+ years.
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60 of 67 people found the following review helpful
on August 29, 2011
I don't feel like writing a long review but thought an experience with battery life would be helpful to some. I just ran a 50k with vibrate and audio alerts on for each mile split and heart rate monitor going the entire time. It took me 6:03 to complete the 31.5 mile race...I know I'm not fast but at least I did it so BACK OFF. Anyway, I had the battery completely charged and turned it off before I left the house. Just before the race, I turned it on, started the timer at the beginning of the race and when I completed the race (6 hours 3 minutes later), the battery life read 31%. I was quite pleased to read that I most likely would have reached the advertised 8 hour battery life if I needed it. I just thought someone would benefit from knowing that. Have a nice run.
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79 of 90 people found the following review helpful
on June 4, 2011
I'm so impressed with the 610. This is my first GPS watch and it's a helluva watch to start out with. I'm sorta new to running so I wanted to have a heart rate monitor around. After being in the market for a watch anyways, I ended up purchasing it. (I went over a month from looking at normal thin watches for $50 to a fully functional GPS watch for $400. A lot of research led me to a great watch).

Pros: 1st - size was a big deal for me with a GPS watch. If you're going to spend $400 on a watch, you should be able to wear it normally, this does the trick. The band is super comfortable and the retaining strap is very clever and actually slides and hooks into the band (hard to describe but well designed). The displays provide as much information as you can pull from the device (which are a lot of features). I really ended up using 1 screen to give me the data I want in 1 glance and got all the other data in my post workout review. I THINK THE HEART RATE MONITOR STRAP IS COMFORTABLE. I've had on a few heart rate monitor straps and while none of them are great, this one has been the best. Back light is great and buttons are great.

Cons: I'm an IT guy and I had a hard time getting aclimated to everything here. Once you have your configurations set up and you're familiar with the menu, it's not too bad. Expect a few workouts to nail out everything you'll want to see. The screen takes practice. It's durable but you have to learn which way works best for you to touch it. I started out using my nail and then figured out the correct pressure to navigate everything (again, you'll get used to it). I had troubles syncing the device to the computer. Go to Garmin's website and look for ANT AGENT, you'll need this and it's not provided with the package.

Why I love it: THE DATA YOU GET AFTER A WORKOUT. The mygarmin website has so many cool features, I'm much more impressed than the website I used for my android running GPS app (Runkeeper Pro). The watch is super comfortable and the form factor, while a little big, is more than practacle.

SO why 4 stars? It's a bit hard to set up unless you've had a gps watch before. You have so much functionality with the watch, it takes time to figure out how to use it. It doesn't pass my "dad test" where if I gave it to my dad, he'd be frustrated trying to figure it out. IF YOU'RE THINKING ABOUT THIS WATCH - get it. It's worth the time investment. Still, may be difficult for tech challenged people.

Overall, very happy. Garmin has done a great job and I hope they keep developing on this watch. I'm super happy with the results and I know the data is really going to help with training. (Strong recommend if tech savvy)

MAKE SURE TO GET ANT AGENT ONCE YOU TRY TO CONNECT YOUR DEVICE. YOU NEED IT TO PAIR THE WATCH. I kinda had a hard time finding the software for myself so I just want everyone to know what it's called. :)
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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
on April 28, 2012
I bought this watch to replace a Suunto T6c that I lost when the band broke. I have been a long term Suunto user but I decided not to buy a Suunto replacement because Suunto refuses to use ANT+ meaning you cannot connect to anything but Suunto equipment. I like the 610 -- the built-in GPS is excellent -- I am not so finicky as others about errors of a 1% in distance especially since the Suunto required a separate big, battery eating GPS Pod that took forever to lock on. The only negative I have to say about the 610 is that I cannot use it as a regular watch, the touch screen is so sensitive, except when you want it to be, that the rubbing of shirt turns it on so I'm constantly having to turn it off. I guess if I had to do it all over I'd get a 910XT so I could use buttons and not deal with the touch screen. Unfortunately at the time, I needed a watch and the 910XT was not available. To really take advantage of the watch's considerable capabilities, read the (poor) manual and be sure to use Garmin Connect. For those of you who like lots of data, the 610 supports First Beat Athlete software. If you are a PC user (not Mac), try it -- you'll be very pleased.

*****Update

Update -- it took about 4 years for the band on my Suunto T6c to break. It took a couple on months for the 610. I'm very unhappy. The pin holding the strap to the watch failed -- I can't find it so I don't know the failure mode. The irksome issue is the pin isn't a standard watch pin. I have a call into Garmin to get a replacement but I haven't heard back -- its been two days. Not good for a watch you use every day to record exercise data -- there are workarounds but they are awkward.

*****Update 2

I did get an email back and Garmin promised to send me some spare pins. In the meantime I ordered a wrist strap from Amazon -- thank you Amazon -- it arrived before Garmin responded. I like the strap because the strap is continuous with two pints of attachment -- if one pin fails the other will (hopefully) hold. It took 1/2 a day for one of the pins to fall out. The devil is in the details -- the technology in the watch is excellent, but the details of the strap are awful. The strap pins are press fit and obviously can and do fall out. My next step I guess is to try to glue the pins in. This isn't what I should have to do with a new $400 watch. I have dropped my rating to 2 stars -- I'm really furious.

*****Update 3

Well Garmin gets some credit. I called about the watch and they offered to replace it. I returned it Fedex and after they received mine back they are sending me a refurbished watch. I should be happy I suppose but they send the replacement via snail mail (DHL to USPS). I guess they forget we actually use these things for training on a daily basis. The replacement is a refurbished unit. I bought a new 610 in January and I get a refurbished unit as a replacement -- does seem unfair. The refurbished unit has a 90 day warranty or the remainder of the original. Seems they don't have much faith in the refurnished units. I've been a loyal Garmin user (GPSMap 60csx, eTrex30, Edge 305, and an earlier Forerunner) but I think I will start to look elsewhere for my sports instruments.

*****Update 4

This is almost funny -- it is now over 2 weeks and I have yet to get my replacement -- DHL tracking shows it stalled in Salt Lake City -- Garmin used some cheap service that they send via DHL and then DHL transfers to the USPS -- now I know why it is so cheap -- they don't actually have to deliver. I have given up and ordered a Suunto. The Suunto may not be perfect but it at least lasted a few years. I've given up on Garmin. I wish I could rate it 0 stars. One thing I forgot for those of you who want or have a 610 -- the wireless dongle for your PC is fragile -- be sure to protect it and I suggest removing it after you download data.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on July 10, 2011
I bought this Garmin 610 after reaching the end of the frustration line with my Garmin 305. First I worked through several software upgrades trying to get the 305 compatible with my MAC then missed an entire run because of no satellite acquisition on a clear day. The final straw was when the 305 would only power on while attached to the charger.

I ran the first 5 miles of a 14 mile run in the rain and the Garmin 610 was flawless throughout! The watch is so easy to use that I set up the watch without reading one word of the user guide. I used my HR monitor from the Garmin 305 without any issues.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
This is my first GPS watch, HR monitor & footpod. It is everything I was hoping it would be & more.
Slimmer profile, think larger man's sportswatch(like an ironman triathlon) so you can wear it as a daily timepiece if you chose to. I'm a lady(and a smaller one at that), I think it might be slightly outside my "comfort zone" size wise to wear with short sleeves casually. But right now, with long sleeves or sweatshirts it is fine & unobtrusive. After about a day of wearing, I hardly notice it is on. Who knows? The size might grow on me & I might find it fine for casual short sleeve wear. I've only had it a few days so far.
The touch screen works well, it is more pressure based as opposed to electrical based like smartphones/tablets. This took a bit to figure out but once I got it, I totally got it & it was easy. Works with gloves on & in various temperatures & moisture levels.
You can customize what fields you see as you workout, along with how much info is on each screen & if it auto scrolls or you choose to manually tap to change info screens. There are up to 4 fields per screen. You have a timer screen, a heart rate screen, & 2 custom whatever you want screens. You can choose to disable the time of day screen in auto scroll thru the newest update Garmin has when you register your device. So you have a possible info stream of 16 data fields PLUS time of day, all on your wrist!
Data transfer via wireless USB dongle was easy & fast. Charging via wall charger was quick & effective, the points contact areas countersunk in the underside of the watch & magnets hold onto the back securely.
The stock band is beefy & well designed with a retention slider that clips into the band slots(no extra band flop!). The watch is contoured a bit towards your wrist on the bottom & top, so it wears alot smaller & closer than you might think it would.
The illumination is excellent at night & the screen is very clear & crisp even with all 4 data fields active on a screen. I had no issues glancing down and seeing all my info without changing my stride or moving my wrist up from a normal running position(90 degrees slightly above my waist).
The HR monitor is excellent & fits very well & reads accurately. I had no issues with abrasion or dropouts & the fit was adjustable & comfy. The monitor itself removes via denim jeans type pressure snaps so the strap can be easily washed & the batteries changed on the monitor itself without issue.
Accessories I recommend:
I bought the Wahoo ANT+ dongle & can't recommend it enough if you own an i-device. I use my iPad for most everything anymore & the thought of turning on our ancient desktop or using my hubbs beloved gaming laptop just wasn't my cup of tea. The dongle does EVERYTHING the wireless USB sensor does via the Wahoo fitness app(use with the dongle & share to Garmin Connect!). Easy peasy!
I also bought a footpod. If you EVER wanna use your garmin inside doing anything fitness related(p90x, boxing, treadmill, weights, jump rope, etc) this is a must have. And using it outside in conjunction with your GPS enabled only gives you more specific info such as cadence & smoother pacing.
ZAGG screen protector(39mm plain watch face) With everything this watch will be exposed to & frequency of use & initial cost of purchase....seriously, how can you not protect your gadget's main interface??? No brainier!

Honestly, this device is pricey but worth it. Not only is it incredibly useful but super fun! My kids like to see my forth screen in the car as I have it set to show our elevation, speed, heading, and grade. They can't wait to see what it shows on an airplane! I must admit that I find my forth screen info entertaining too:) Then when you get home(assuming you recorded this trip as an "event"), you can see where you went & the stats of said trip.
Errands have never been so much fun!

Con:
I wish it was fully waterproof. Knowing I can't swim with it is a bummer.

UPDATE: after 10 months, Garmin came out with this watch in white! My black one worked flawlessly so I sold it to buy the white. I never had strap issues. I never had reverse charging issues. The touchscreen is pressure sensitive and NOT resistive like an iPod/iPad/iPhone, changing screens WILL take a bit of pressure to do. This isn't a flaw, it just is how the screen works! If you know this, you'll expect what you get and like it. If you think it works like a resistive touch screen, you will be disappointed. FYI. The black got worn daily as a wristwatch and used to run nearly 1000 miles in 2012 with accurate and reliable recording/sensor pairing/data uploads. I never contemplated getting another watch brand or model. Six stars all over!
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52 of 62 people found the following review helpful
on August 2, 2011
Just bought my new 610 in July. The unit reverse charges meaning the battery depletes when I attempt to charge it. Check out the Garmin Forum to see all the other people having the same issue. Garmin Customer Service said they are working on a fix (they've been working on it for months) but there is no use exchanging it because I'll most likely end up with another defective unit. Why in the world doesn't Garmin pull these from the shelves???? I paid $350 for something that won't charge. This is a nightmare.

Other than the fact that it doesn't charge, I think this is the best version of the Forerunner so far. I've owned all other versions and this seems to fix many of the issues of previous versions.
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