Polar M430 GPS Running Watch
|Price:||$194.95 - $290.00|
|Sale:||Lower price available on select options|
- Compatible with PC Windows XP, Windows 7, Windows 8, and later,Compatible with Mac OS X 10.6, OS X 10.7, OS X 10.8, and later
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From the manufacturer
Track your workouts, analyze your progress and achieve more with Polar Flow – the complete fitness and training platform available on desktop and mobile.
Polar Flow helps you plan, sync and analyze your workouts, follow your long-term progress, find training inspiration and customize your Polar M430 to fit your needs.
GPS Running Watch
Chase your destiny with Polar M430, an advanced sports watch for runners who want more.
Polar M430 is packed with features that a dedicated runner looks for in a watch. Set your goals and crush them with this waterproof powerhouse.
- Wrist-based heart rate
- Integrated GPS
- Indoor running metrics
- Polar Running Program
- 24/7 activity & sleep tracking
Polar Fitness Test
Test your aerobic fitness level without any sweating in just 5 minutes with Polar’s wrist-based heart rate solution.
Polar Fitness Test
Wrist-based heart rate
Track your heart rate from the wrist easily and comfortably with Polar’s optical heart rate solution.
Track your pace, distance, altitude and route.
Indoor running metrics
Track your pace and distance indoors on the track or the treadmill with the built-in accelerometer.
Polar Running Program
Train for a running event with a personalized, adaptable running plan.
State-of-the-art running metrics, advanced GPS and the freedom of optical heart rate technology Proprietary heart rate algorithm and 6 LED optical sensors built into the watch Wrist based heart rate monitor - no chest strap required The latest in GPS and accelerometer technology to track your speed, distance and pace Records your steps, distance, calories burned, and sleep includes interval timers, stopwatch, and finish time estimator Scientifically- validated Smart Coaching tools Multiple GPS recording options for extended battery life, capable of up to 30 hours of training timeConnect via Bluetooth Smart to see notifications from your mobile phone directly on your screenTrack your training and activity, analyze your progress and achieve more with the Polar Flow app the complete fitness and training platform available on desktop and mobile
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Top customer reviews
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Cons: the initial setup, poor customer support, and frequent sync errors. (More on this below.)
Delivery was extremely fast, but setting up the watch was a real pain. I tried it twice via phone (Android), failed both times at firmware update, having lost the Bluetooth signal (why does a product that's being sold for two days need a new firmware is another question). Finally I connected it to a computer where the setup, update and sync completed in a reasonable amount of time, and I only had to resync once because of some error.
The watch itself looks nice; similar to the M400 but different enough with its smoother touch and new wristband. If you had an M400 before, there won't be surprises, the menu is practically the same.
I'm yet to try it in action, when the pain of setup will have dwindled.
Update #1: now that I have used it in action, one more star. The M430 is just great, the fifth star is missing due to it taking three attempts to sync.
It is lighter than the M400, and while a couple of extra holes in the band don't seem to achieve much, it does help with the sweating.
The heart rate is more accurate than it was on the M200 (smooth raises and drops on the graph as I pedaled up slope and downhill, instead of noticing halfway that "hey, looks like we're doing something, let's crank it up from 90 to 155" ), even with indoor training where the wrist isn't in a predictable position like it is when running.
The buttons are quick to react, the menu is easy to use.
Finally, the silent (buzzing) alarm is here. Being an early raiser married to a late sleeper, a quiet way to wake up is cherished.
And now to the GPS.
Is it accurate? Probably is. It measures the same distance my other watches measured, give or take a few meters. But... It finds a GPS signal instantly. Right away. No waiting.
Remember when on cold, dark late autumn mornings you had to wait for a minute or two in the icy rain and wind for the GPS signal? Or when you wanted to measure the distance from the supermarket to your doorstep to prove it is *exactly* one mile*, and your husband and sister politely laughed at you while you waited for your watch to find that signal? Never again!
To summarize: set it up using a computer, be patient with the phone sync, enjoy the watch.
Update#2: Attached is how a 6k run looks with the good old H7 sensor, vs the M430. There are differences, but they are minor, and the two graphs are practically the same.
Update#3: as expected, the HR accuracy is somewhat worse during weightlifting-type activities. (attached a second picture) Here I did some front- and back squats, followed by four minutes of deadlifts alternating with burpees (during which I placed the phone recording the H7 on a nearby shelf that was too far for this Bluetooth protocol, hence the gaps). The proportions are more or less there, but the numbers differ significantly. This is something I was expecting following my adventures with the M200; the accuracy improves with the band being tightened just the right way, and if one manages to sweat moderately, but (a) few are lucky enough to remain fresh and dry after 30 deadlifts and burpees (b) even then it is far from accurate.
If you want accuracy, go with the chest sensor.
I'll try biking next.
The watch stopped syncing. It connects, then claims that sync is completed after 1-2 seconds. I have to plug it into a computer. Disappointing.
After reinstalling the Polar Flow client, it syncs again, who knows for how long.
I think I figured out the sync issue. For whatever reason, the phone app switches the device off after every couple of syncs. Switching it on again (Settings - Devices) usually helps; if it doesn't, connect the watch to a computer or reinstall the app.
I'd like to mention how poor support from Polar was. I reported the sync issue to them, detailing all the troubleshooting steps I took; they responded after several days with a canned response suggesting some troubleshooting steps - some I wrote them to have tried already (wasn't even the full list), and nothing since.
The final verdict is 3 stars.
I'm hopeful that the syncing can get sured up with updates, but the proprietary charging cable is a big disappointment.
The m430 is a very nice everyday/running watch, there's enough battery life for most runs (possibly not if you are an ultra marathoner or Iron Person) and if you're not using the GPS it goes a surprisingly long time between charges, even with the all day heart rate monitoring turned on. I usually use a chest strap for heart rate monitoring but having the on-wrist monitor as a standby is nice for the occasions that I forget it.
It's worth watching the videos Polar have on their website and reading their blog articles since the instructions you get with the watch are thin to the point of emaciation. I wonder how many are missing out on the cool things you can do when setting up trainings because you actually have to dig for that information.
Long battery life relative to a smart watch
Vibrating notifications for running events as well as from your smartphone are nice and subtle
Being able to customise which info is shown during training
Polar Web service integrates with others and plays nice so you can get at your data
B&W LCD is easy to read even in bright light
Doesn't look stupid on your wrist in the office (IMO)
Activity tracking doesn't count steps when driving unlike the competing product my wife uses
Activity watch face gives you an idea of how much you've been sitting around today at a glance
GPS is quick to acquire fix although it can be confused if you're in a very built up area
Proprietary charging cable (the usb cable on the m400 was notorious, so this might be a pro for some)
Feature usage requires actual effort to research because the manuals are a bit lacking
Being in a meeting and feeling antsy because you got a time to move message and the person talking won't get to the point.