Motorola Motoactv Review

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The discontinued Motorloa Motoactv was a revolutionary running watch, using a color touch screen, GPS and including an MP3 player. It was more like a smartphone than a traditional GPS watch; the Motoactv was brilliant, but it was also flawed. When it was originally introduced at $250, these flaws were too severe for it to compete with the Garmin alternatives. The price of the Motoactv tends to vary, but it is often available for under $150, and at that price the Motoactv is great value for money. If you can live with each of these four flaws, then the Motoactv is a great buy. (See the cons section for more details on each.)

  • Poor water resistance. Don't buy the Motoactv is you want to swim or if you're likely to forget to check the covers before your run.
  • Limited battery life. If you run for less than 3 hours, you're fine with the Motoactv. If you run for between 3 and 6 hours then think carefully. If you run for more than 6 hours, look elsewhere.
  • No usable 'current pace' display. Don't try to use the Motoactv to keep you on pace. (This is true of all GPS watches unless you can display the pace from a Footpod.)
  • Difficulty uploading workouts to a training log. If you want to keep an automated training log (and you should), the Motoactv will be hard work.
The Motorloa Motoactv with the watch strap (it's available as with a clip instead).
The covers for the USB port and the headphones have to be in place for waterproofing. The headphone socket cover is tiny and easy to lose.
The display of the Motoactv is wonderful at night. This comparison with the 310XT gives some idea of the difference, but this is with the 310XT illuminated, which only lasts a few seconds.

1 Motoactv Pros

  • With the recent price reduction the Motoactv is less than $150, which is far cheaper than any comparable product.
  • The Motoactv is easy to use, and my family prefers using the Motoactv over Garmin products.
  • The color display is nice, and the simple monochrome display of other devices seems stale and dated by comparison.
  • The combination of a touch screen and physical buttons works quite well. The screen works when wet, though I found some occasional problems when there was just a drop of sweat rather than a soaking. I also found that heavy rain drops may act as screen presses, which is annoying.
  • I love having a continually lit display for Running in the Dark. You can press a button on a Garmin to illuminate the display, but the Motoactv is much better.
  • The inclusion of an MP3 player is nice, and it claims to learn what songs make your run harder. Personally I prefer using a separate MP3 player, but having the one device that does both has some appeal.
  • The Motoactv will display a true map of the area, showing the street layout, which is a huge improvement over the breadcrumb display of the Garmin watches. If you could upload a route then this would be great for running in a new city.
  • The dimensions of the Motoactv are more pleasing than the Garmin 310XT/910XT. It still has a large display, but it is much thinner.

2 Motoactv Cons

  • The Motorloa Motoactv is discontinued, but still available.
  • The Motoactv is 'water resistant' not waterproof. There are many reports of water damage and Motorola refusing to repair them. However, there are also many reports of using the Motoactv in torrential rain, which I've done myself. I suspect the issue is that the Motoactv has small covers for the headphone jack and the USB port, and if they are not in place, water can get in and destroy the watch.
  • The battery life of the Motoactv is quite poor compared with other devices. If you use Bluetooth headphones and use the default setting the battery is dead in 3 hours. With no Bluetooth and the 'extended battery' setting it should last for 6 hours. This is probably plenty for most runners, but you have to remember to keep it plugged in, as the battery seems to drain faster than I would expect.
  • Like any GPS watch, the display of your current pace varies too much to be of any use. This is an intrinsic problem with GPS, and I found the Motoactv was out by up to a minute/mile. This is why I recommend the Garmin 310XT/910XT/610 as they can display your current pace from the Footpod while still using the GPS for everything else. You can use the 'lap average pace' to get a reasonable idea of your pace, but if you need to hit a specific pace for a training run or a race, you're better off with one of the Garmin 310XT/910XT/610 and a Footpod.
  • The Motoactv will upload your workout to Motoactv.com via a wireless network, so you don't even need a PC, which is a great idea. The problem is that it's hard to upload your workouts to any other training log. You can download each workout as a CSV file and upload it to another tool, but that sometimes requires going via a conversion program. Support for GPX export has been added.
  • The Motoactv will support a Footpod, including the Garmin Footpod
    $49.99 USD at Amazon.com
    , and it can use the FootPod to show your pace/distance. This only works if you select to run outdoors, which turns the GPS off. The bigger problem is that there is no way of calibrating the Foodpod, so there is usually an error (for me it was out by 7%). The Motoactv does have an internal sensor that can be calibrated, but this does not work for the FoodPod. The Motoactv will use the FootPod to display your Cadence, but I found the Cadence display to vary widely; my Garmin would show a steady cadence value when the Motoactv was swinging widely.

3 Comparison Table

I evaluate running watches in three distinct ways. Firstly, you can use a watch on its own, without any kind of Footpod. This is probably the most common way runners use their watch, but you miss out on a lot. The second rating is with a standard Footpod that is available quite cheaply. These Footpod's can be reasonably accurate once the calibrated, but calibration is a little tedious. The final evaluation is with the Stryd Footpod, which is vastly more accurate than any other type of Footpod, or and more accurate than GPS. The table below looks at the score, and the value for money of each watch for each of the three conditions.

Review With Stryd Score With Stryd Value for money With Footpod Score With Footpod Value for money Without Footpod Score Without Footpod Value for money Price at Amazon.com
Garmin Epix Review 47 4.5 31 3.9 23 3.4 Garmin Epix $254.43 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $169.95)
Garmin Fenix 5X Review 47 2.9 32 2.3 24 1.9 Fenix 5X $699.99 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin Fenix 3 Review 45 3.8 28 3.1 24 3 Fenix 3 $449.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $349.99)
Garmin 935 45 3.6 30 3 22 2.4 Garmin 935 $499.99 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin Vivoactive HR Review 40 4.9 21 3.8 17 3.8 Garmin Vivoactive HR $199.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $144.95)
Garmin 920XT Review 39 4.4 30 4.7 24 4.5 Garmin 920XT without HRM $249.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $289.00)
Garmin Vivoactive Review 34 5.1 14 3.4 10 3.3 Garmin Vivoactive $137.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $98.00)
Suunto Ambit2 Review 32 3.9 25 4.3 21 4.5 Suunto Ambit2 $274.95 USD at Amazon.com
Suunto Ambit3 Peak Review 32 3.4 29 4.1 25 4.2 Suunto Ambit3 Peak $329.76 USD at Amazon.com
Suunto Spartan Ultra Review 32 2.2 28 2.4 24 2.2 Suunto Spartan Ultra $519.24 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin Fenix 2 Review 31 2.9 22 2.7 18 2.5 Garmin Fenix 2 without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Suunto Ambit3 Run Review 30 4 27 5.5 23 5.9 Suunto Ambit3 Run $299.00 USD (new) at Amazon.com
Suunto Ambit2 R Review 30 3.5 23 3.8 19 3.8 Suunto Ambit2 R without HRM $249.00 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin 235 Review 28 2.9 20 2.8 12 2 Garmin 235 $315.00 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $349.98)
Garmin 620 Review 27 3.8 24 5.1 20 5.6 Garmin 620 without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Garmin 910XT Review 26 3.9 26 6.1 21 6.7 Garmin 910XT without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Garmin 310XT Review 25 4.6 24 8.3 18 10 Garmin 310XT without HRM
price not listed at Amazon.com
Garmin 225 Review 25 3.8 13 3.1 9 2.9 Garmin 225 $145.00 USD (used) at Amazon.com
(Referbished $152.47)
TomTom Cardio Runner Review 25 3.3 8 1.6 8 2 TomTom Cardio Runner price not listed at Amazon.com
Polar V800 Review 25 2.1 26 2.8 22 2.7 Polar V800 without HRM $429.00 USD (new) at Amazon.com
Polar M400 Review 24 4.1 14 4.2 10 4.4 Polar M400 without HRM $124.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $114.95)
Garmin 610 Review 24 3.3 20 4.3 14 3.9 Garmin 610 without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Leikr Review 10 1 20 2.5 14 2 Leikr ($380)
Epson SF-510 Review 4 0.7 4 1.3 4 2 Epson SF-510 $79.99 USD at Amazon.com
Epson SF-810 Review 4 0.6 4 1.1 4 1.5 Epson SF-810 $115.95 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin 10 Review 2 0.3 2 0.6 2 0.9 Garmin 10 $84.81 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $45.33)

The score is the sum of how well each watch can answer the four basic questions (how far, how fast, where are you, what's your cadence), plus some bonus points.

  1. The "How far you've run" will be based on GPS only for "without Footpod" and "with Standard Footpod", but based on Stryd if supported in the "with Stryd Footpod" table..
  2. How fast you're running assumes you're using a Footpod if it's supported, otherwise the rating is 0-2 based on GPS accuracy.
  3. The "Where are you?" is based on various navigation features such as back to start, breadcrumbs, and preloaded maps. For some watches, you have to turn GPS off to get the benefit of Stryd, so those watches have worse "where are you scores" with Stryd than without.
  4. The cadence score uses 1 point for an internal cadence sensor, 2 points for footpod support, 1 point for support from chest strap cadence, and 1 point for cadence alerts.
  5. I give 1-2 bonus points for application support, 1-2 bonus points for data upload, 1-2 bonus points for Optical Heart Rate Monitoring, and 0-1 bonus points for battery life.
  6. Value for money is the score divided by the price (at the time I last updated the table.) Your needs may be different, so you might weight the different aspects of the watches differently, or be basing your decision on different criteria totally. Hopefully this table will give you a good starting point for your decision.

4 Score Breakdown without a Footpod

Review Score Value for money6 How far did
you run?1
How fast are
you running?2
Where are
you?3
What's your
cadence?4
Bonus Points5

Price at Amazon.com

Suunto Ambit3 Peak Review 25 4.2 8 3 6 2 6 Suunto Ambit3 Peak $329.76 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin 920XT Review 24 4.5 1 2 7 6 8 Garmin 920XT without HRM $249.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $289.00)
Garmin Fenix 3 Review 24 3 2 1 7 6 8 Fenix 3 $449.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $349.99)
Suunto Spartan Ultra Review 24 2.2 8 2 7 2 5 Suunto Spartan Ultra $519.24 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin Fenix 5X Review 24 1.9 1 0 9 6 8 Fenix 5X $699.99 USD at Amazon.com
Suunto Ambit3 Run Review 23 5.9 8 3 5 2 5 Suunto Ambit3 Run $299.00 USD (new) at Amazon.com
Garmin Epix Review 23 3.4 0 0 9 6 8 Garmin Epix $254.43 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $169.95)
Polar V800 Review 22 2.7 9 4 3 2 4 Polar V800 without HRM $429.00 USD (new) at Amazon.com
Garmin 935 22 2.4 1 0 7 6 8 Garmin 935 $499.99 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin 910XT Review 21 6.7 5 3 6 2 5 Garmin 910XT without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Suunto Ambit2 Review 21 4.5 4 3 6 2 6 Suunto Ambit2 $274.95 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin 620 Review 20 5.6 3 2 2 6 7 Garmin 620 without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Suunto Ambit2 R Review 19 3.8 4 3 5 2 5 Suunto Ambit2 R without HRM $249.00 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin 310XT Review 18 10 7 2 4 0 5 Garmin 310XT without HRM
price not listed at Amazon.com
Garmin Fenix 2 Review 18 2.5 1 0 6 6 5 Garmin Fenix 2 without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Garmin Vivoactive HR Review 17 3.8 0 0 2 6 9 Garmin Vivoactive HR $199.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $144.95)
Garmin 610 Review 14 3.9 3 2 3 2 4 Garmin 610 without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Leikr Review 14 2 5 2 4 0 3 Leikr ($380)
Garmin 235 Review 12 2 0 0 2 2 8 Garmin 235 $315.00 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $349.98)
Polar M400 Review 10 4.4 3 1 1 2 3 Polar M400 without HRM $124.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $114.95)
Garmin Vivoactive Review 10 3.3 0 0 0 6 4 Garmin Vivoactive $137.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $98.00)
Garmin 225 Review 9 2.9 1 1 0 2 5 Garmin 225 $145.00 USD (used) at Amazon.com
(Referbished $152.47)
TomTom Cardio Runner Review 8 2 2 1 0 0 5 TomTom Cardio Runner price not listed at Amazon.com
Epson SF-510 Review 4 2 0 0 0 0 4 Epson SF-510 $79.99 USD at Amazon.com
Epson SF-810 Review 4 1.5 1 0 0 0 3 Epson SF-810 $115.95 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin 10 Review 2 0.9 0 0 0 0 2 Garmin 10 $84.81 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $45.33)

5 Score Breakdown with a Standard Footpod

Review Score Value for money6 How far did
you run?1
How fast are
you running?2
Where are
you?3
What's your
cadence?4
Bonus Points5

Price at Amazon.com

Garmin Fenix 5X Review 32 2.3 1 4 9 10 8 Fenix 5X $699.99 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin Epix Review 31 3.9 0 4 9 10 8 Garmin Epix $254.43 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $169.95)
Garmin 920XT Review 30 4.7 1 4 7 10 8 Garmin 920XT without HRM $249.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $289.00)
Garmin 935 30 3 1 4 7 10 8 Garmin 935 $499.99 USD at Amazon.com
Suunto Ambit3 Peak Review 29 4.1 8 3 6 6 6 Suunto Ambit3 Peak $329.76 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin Fenix 3 Review 28 3.1 2 1 7 10 8 Fenix 3 $449.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $349.99)
Suunto Spartan Ultra Review 28 2.4 8 2 7 6 5 Suunto Spartan Ultra $519.24 USD at Amazon.com
Suunto Ambit3 Run Review 27 5.5 8 3 5 6 5 Suunto Ambit3 Run $299.00 USD (new) at Amazon.com
Garmin 910XT Review 26 6.1 5 4 6 6 5 Garmin 910XT without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Polar V800 Review 26 2.8 9 4 3 6 4 Polar V800 without HRM $429.00 USD (new) at Amazon.com
Suunto Ambit2 Review 25 4.3 4 3 6 6 6 Suunto Ambit2 $274.95 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin 310XT Review 24 8.3 7 4 4 4 5 Garmin 310XT without HRM
price not listed at Amazon.com
Garmin 620 Review 24 5.1 3 2 2 10 7 Garmin 620 without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Suunto Ambit2 R Review 23 3.8 4 3 5 6 5 Suunto Ambit2 R without HRM $249.00 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin Fenix 2 Review 22 2.7 1 0 6 10 5 Garmin Fenix 2 without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Garmin Vivoactive HR Review 21 3.8 0 0 2 10 9 Garmin Vivoactive HR $199.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $144.95)
Garmin 610 Review 20 4.3 3 4 3 6 4 Garmin 610 without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Garmin 235 Review 20 2.8 0 4 2 6 8 Garmin 235 $315.00 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $349.98)
Leikr Review 20 2.5 5 4 4 4 3 Leikr ($380)
Polar M400 Review 14 4.2 3 1 1 6 3 Polar M400 without HRM $124.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $114.95)
Garmin Vivoactive Review 14 3.4 0 0 0 10 4 Garmin Vivoactive $137.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $98.00)
Garmin 225 Review 13 3.1 1 1 0 6 5 Garmin 225 $145.00 USD (used) at Amazon.com
(Referbished $152.47)
TomTom Cardio Runner Review 8 1.6 2 1 0 0 5 TomTom Cardio Runner price not listed at Amazon.com
Epson SF-510 Review 4 1.3 0 0 0 0 4 Epson SF-510 $79.99 USD at Amazon.com
Epson SF-810 Review 4 1.1 1 0 0 0 3 Epson SF-810 $115.95 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin 10 Review 2 0.6 0 0 0 0 2 Garmin 10 $84.81 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $45.33)

6 Score Breakdown with a Stryd Footpod

Review Score Value for money6 How far did
you run?1
How fast are
you running?2
Where are
you?3
What's your
cadence?4
Bonus Points5

Price at Amazon.com

Garmin Epix Review 47 4.5 10 10 9 10 8 Garmin Epix $254.43 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $169.95)
Garmin Fenix 5X Review 47 2.9 10 10 9 10 8 Fenix 5X $699.99 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin Fenix 3 Review 45 3.8 10 10 7 10 8 Fenix 3 $449.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $349.99)
Garmin 935 45 3.6 10 10 7 10 8 Garmin 935 $499.99 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin Vivoactive HR Review 40 4.9 10 10 1 10 9 Garmin Vivoactive HR $199.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $144.95)
Garmin 920XT Review 39 4.4 10 10 1 10 8 Garmin 920XT without HRM $249.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $289.00)
Garmin Vivoactive Review 34 5.1 10 10 0 10 4 Garmin Vivoactive $137.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $98.00)
Suunto Ambit2 Review 32 3.9 10 10 6 0 6 Suunto Ambit2 $274.95 USD at Amazon.com
Suunto Ambit3 Peak Review 32 3.4 10 10 6 0 6 Suunto Ambit3 Peak $329.76 USD at Amazon.com
Suunto Spartan Ultra Review 32 2.2 10 10 7 0 5 Suunto Spartan Ultra $519.24 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin Fenix 2 Review 31 2.9 10 10 6 0 5 Garmin Fenix 2 without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Suunto Ambit3 Run Review 30 4 10 10 5 0 5 Suunto Ambit3 Run $299.00 USD (new) at Amazon.com
Suunto Ambit2 R Review 30 3.5 10 10 5 0 5 Suunto Ambit2 R without HRM $249.00 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin 235 Review 28 2.9 10 10 0 0 8 Garmin 235 $315.00 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $349.98)
Garmin 620 Review 27 3.8 10 10 0 0 7 Garmin 620 without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Garmin 910XT Review 26 3.9 10 10 1 0 5 Garmin 910XT without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Garmin 310XT Review 25 4.6 10 10 0 0 5 Garmin 310XT without HRM
price not listed at Amazon.com
Garmin 225 Review 25 3.8 10 10 0 0 5 Garmin 225 $145.00 USD (used) at Amazon.com
(Referbished $152.47)
TomTom Cardio Runner Review 25 3.3 10 10 0 0 5 TomTom Cardio Runner price not listed at Amazon.com
Polar V800 Review 25 2.1 10 10 1 0 4 Polar V800 without HRM $429.00 USD (new) at Amazon.com
Polar M400 Review 24 4.1 10 10 1 0 3 Polar M400 without HRM $124.99 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $114.95)
Garmin 610 Review 24 3.3 10 10 0 0 4 Garmin 610 without HRM price not listed at Amazon.com
Leikr Review 10 1 5 2 0 0 3 Leikr ($380)
Epson SF-510 Review 4 0.7 0 0 0 0 4 Epson SF-510 $79.99 USD at Amazon.com
Epson SF-810 Review 4 0.6 1 0 0 0 3 Epson SF-810 $115.95 USD at Amazon.com
Garmin 10 Review 2 0.3 0 0 0 0 2 Garmin 10 $84.81 USD at Amazon.com
(Referbished $45.33)

7 Basic Features

Review

Released GPS
Accuracy
Weight (oz) Size (CM3) Display (mm) Resolution (Pixels) Waterproofing Pace from
FootPod with GPS Enabled
Heart Rate
Monitor
Cadence Data Upload
Garmin Epix Review 2015 6.2 3.0 48 29 x 21 (609mm2) 205 x 148 (30.3K total) Good (50m) Yes Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Garmin Fenix 5X Review 2017 5.6 3.5 36 30.5 (round) (731mm2) 240 diameter (45.2K total) Good (100m) Yes Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Garmin Fenix 3 Review 2015 6.2 2.9 33 30 (round) (726mm2) 218 diameter (37.3K total) Good (100m) Yes Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Garmin 935 2017 5.6 1.7 24 30.5 (round) (731mm2) 240 diameter (45.2K total) Good (100m) Yes Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Garmin Vivoactive HR Review 2016 4.9 1.7 19 21 x 29 (609mm2) 148 x 205 (30.3K total) Good (50m) No Yes (+OHRM) Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Garmin 920XT Review 2014 6.6 2.2 35 29 x 21 (609mm2) 205 x 148 (30.3K total) Good (50m) Yes Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Garmin Vivoactive Review 2015 5.4 1.3 13 29 x 21 (592mm2) 205 x 148 (30.3K total) Good (50m) No Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Suunto Ambit2 Review 2013 7.6 3.1 30 29 (round) (661mm2) 128 x 128 (16.4K total) Good (100m) No Yes Internal/Footpod Yes
Suunto Ambit3 Peak Review 2014 7.9 2.9 30 29 (round) (661mm2) 128 x 128 (16.4K total) Good (100m) No Yes Internal/Footpod Yes
Suunto Spartan Ultra Review 2016 7.1 2.7 38 32 (round) (804mm2) 56 x 32 (96K total) Good (100m) No Yes Internal (Limited Footpod) Yes
Garmin Fenix 2 Review 2014 5.7 3.2 32 31 (round) (755mm2) 70 diameter (3.8K total) Good (50m) No Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Suunto Ambit3 Run Review 2014 7.9 2.5 30 29 (round) (661mm2) 128 x 128 (16.4K total) Good (50m) No Yes Internal/Footpod Yes
Suunto Ambit2 R Review 2013 7.6 2.5 30 29 (round) (661mm2) 128 x 128 (16.4K total) Good (50m) No Yes Internal/Footpod Yes
Garmin 235 Review 2015 4.9 1.5 19 31 (round) (755mm2) 215 x 180 (38.7K total) Good (50m) Yes Yes (+OHRM) Internal/Footpod Yes
Garmin 620 Review 2013 7.1 1.5 20 25.4 (round) (507mm2) 180 diameter (25.4K total) Good (50m) No Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Garmin 910XT Review 2011 7.5 2.5 49 33 x 20 (660mm2) 160 x 100 (16K total) Good (50m) Yes Yes Footpod/Alert Yes
Garmin 310XT Review 2009 7.5 2.5 63 33 x 20 (660mm2) 160 x 100 (16K total) Good (50m) Yes Yes Footpod Yes
Garmin 225 Review 2015 6.2 1.5 24 25.4 (round) (507mm2) 180 diameter (25.4K total) Good (50m) No Yes (+OHRM) Internal/Footpod Yes
TomTom Cardio Runner Review 2015 6.0 2.2 30 22 x 25 (550mm2) 144 x 168 (24.2K total) Good (50m) No Yes (+OHRM) Internal/Footpod Yes
Polar V800 Review 2014 8.0 2.8 31 23 x 23 (529mm2) 128 x 128 (16.4K total) Good (30m) No Yes Internal/Footpod Limited
Polar M400 Review 2014 4.4 2.0 24 23 x 23 (529mm2) 128 x 128 (16.4K total) Good (30m) No Yes Internal/Footpod Limited
Garmin 610 Review 2011 7.3 2.5 41 25.4 (round) (507mm2) 128 diameter (12.9K total) Fair (IPX7) Yes Yes Footpod/Alert Yes
Leikr Review 2013 7.3 2.4 25 41 x 31 (1271mm2) 206 x 148 (76.8K total) Fair (IPX6) Yes Yes Footpod Limited
Epson SF-510 Review 2015 4.4 1.7 24 28 x 22 (616mm2) 128 x 96 (12.3K total) Good (50m) No Yes Limited Internal Limited
Epson SF-810 Review 2015 5.5 1.8 28 28 (round) (616mm2) 128 diameter (12.9K total) Good (50m) No OHRM Only) Limited Internal Limited
Garmin 10 Review 2012 3.8 1.3 33 25 x 24 (600mm2) 55 x 32 (1.8K total) Good (50m) No No No Yes



Review

Battery
Life (hr)
Tested Battery
Life (hr)
Extended
Battery
Life (hr)
Charge On The Run? Training
Effect
HRV GPS cache Sensors
Garmin Epix Review 24 17.6 50 Yes (with USB=Garmin) Yes Record Yes Ant+
Garmin Fenix 5X Review 20 23 35 Yes, but can't be worn Yes Record Yes Bluetooth/Ant+
Garmin Fenix 3 Review 20 22 50 Yes (with USB=Garmin) Yes No Yes Ant+
Garmin 935 24 60 Yes, but can't be worn Yes Record Yes Bluetooth/Ant+
Garmin Vivoactive HR Review 13 13 Yes (with USB=Garmin) No No Yes Ant+
Garmin 920XT Review 24 19 40 No (terminates) Yes Record Yes Ant+
Garmin Vivoactive Review 10 10 10 Yes (with USB=Garmin) No No Yes Ant+
Suunto Ambit2 Review 15 50 Yes Yes Record Yes Ant+
Suunto Ambit3 Peak Review 20 100 Yes Yes Record Yes Bluetooth
Suunto Spartan Ultra Review 18 17 26 Yes, but can't be worn Yes Record Yes Bluetooth
Garmin Fenix 2 Review 15 50 Yes (with USB=Garmin) Yes No Yes Ant+
Suunto Ambit3 Run Review 10 10.5 100 Yes Yes Record Yes Bluetooth
Suunto Ambit2 R Review 8 7.3 25 Yes Yes Record Yes Ant+
Garmin 235 Review 11 11 Yes, but no optical HR Yes No Yes Ant+
Garmin 620 Review 10 10 No (resets) Yes Record Yes Ant+
Garmin 910XT Review 20 20 Yes, but no display Yes Record No Ant+
Garmin 310XT Review 20 20 Yes, but no display No No No Ant+
Garmin 225 Review 10 11 10 No (resets) No No Yes Ant+
TomTom Cardio Runner Review 8 6.3 8 No (resets) No No Yes Bluetooth HR
Polar V800 Review 13 24 50 No (terminates) Yes Display Predictive Bluetooth
Polar M400 Review 8 8 Yes, but can't be worn No No No Bluetooth
Garmin 610 Review 8 8 Yes, but no display Yes Record No Ant+
Leikr Review 5 6.5 5 Yes, but can't be worn No No Yes (few hours) Ant+
Epson SF-510 Review 30 30 30 No No No Yes (few hours) Bluetooth HR
Epson SF-810 Review 20 26 20 No No No Yes (few hours) None
Garmin 10 Review 5 5 No No No No None

8 Navigation Features

Review

Color Maps Breadcrumbs Courses To Waypoint Compass Reverse course Beeline to start Connect IQ Altimeter
Garmin Epix Review Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes
Garmin Fenix 5X Review Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes
Garmin Fenix 3 Review No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes
Garmin 935 No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes
Garmin Vivoactive HR Review No No No No No No No Yes Yes
Garmin 920XT Review No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes
Garmin Vivoactive Review No No No No No No Yes Yes No
Suunto Ambit2 Review No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Suunto Ambit3 Peak Review No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Suunto Spartan Ultra Review No Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes
Garmin Fenix 2 Review No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes
Suunto Ambit3 Run Review No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Suunto Ambit2 R Review No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Garmin 235 Review No No No No No No Yes Yes No
Garmin 620 Review No No No No No No No No No
Garmin 910XT Review No Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes No Yes
Garmin 310XT Review No Yes Yes Yes No Yes No No No
Garmin 225 Review No No No No No No No No No
TomTom Cardio Runner Review No No No No No No No No No
Polar V800 Review No No Yes No No No Yes No Yes
Polar M400 Review No No No No No No Yes No No
Garmin 610 Review No No Yes Yes No No Yes No No
Leikr Review Yes Yes Yes No No No No No No
Epson SF-510 Review No No No No No No No No No
Epson SF-810 Review No No No No No No No No No
Garmin 10 Review No No No No No No No No No

For "navigation":

  • Color Maps gives you full color maps, rather like a smart phone, with roads and paths marked out.
  • Track Outline is a display of where you've run, rather like a breadcrumb trail. If there are maps, the outline is superimposed otherwise this is just the outline on its own without any context.
  • Course Outline is an outline of a route that can be downloaded. I've found this useful during ultras or in unfamiliar cities where I've needed to know where to go.
  • Back To Start is a simple arrow point to your starting point, so it won't help you backtrack.
  • Back To Waypoint returns you to a previously marked location using a simple arrow to point.
  • Compass. A magnetic compass can help you orient yourself or the map. Without a magnetic compass you have to be moving for the GPS to give you a sense of direction.


(Older Reviews: Polar RC3 GPS, Soleus 1.0, Motorola Motoactv.)