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Polar V800 Review – Polar V800 Heart Rate Monitor Review

The Polar V800 sparked pure enthusiasm with me – and I would almost begin with the conclusion. The Polar V800 is a heart rate monitor that leaves nothing to be desired. On the contrary. I do not think I’ve spent so much time on any other heart rate monitor for my pulse watch test until I’ve halfway set all the functions – understood and then tried them out. There are already many things possible with this great sports watch. And I did not want to buy this heart rate monitor at first, but I do not regret it …

At the beginning of 2014, the Finnish manufacturer Polar launched a GPS heart rate monitor that is unparalleled. She has some technical refinements that were not installed by any other manufacturer. It combines almost four devices in one. It is an activity tracker, smartwatch, heart rate monitor and regular sports watch for everyday life in one.

Five arguments why I would buy the Polar V800 again

  • massive range of functions that leaves nothing to be desired
  • The heart rate measurement in the Polar V800 is carried out very precisely via a soft chest strap
  • the battery power is mighty, would last for an Iron Man run
  • Data analysis via the Polar Flow Web Portal exceeds my expectations
  • Heart rate monitor, activity tracker, beautiful everyday watch and sometimes also smartwatch in one

When the Polar V800 HR heart rate monitor was available for purchase in early 2014, it cost 399 euros without a chest strap and a whopping 449 euros with a chest strap.  Quite a lot of money for a new training partner. That was too expensive for me. Now almost two years later I bought them for nearly 380 euros on Amazon. The price includes the chest strap, the wheel support, and the cadence sensor.

The good thing about it, I saved myself a few Euros by waiting, and Polar has made the heart rate monitor even better with more and more updates. All teething problems known to me have been corrected. No wonder that the Polar V800 pulse watch is now so popular with almost all buyers.

Polar V800 – Triathlon pulse watch for professionals!

  • including a chest strap

On request also:

  • Including bike mount
  • incl. Bluetooth Smart cadence sensor

The optics of the Polar V800 HR heart rate monitor

POLAR V800 GPS Sports Watch with Heart Rate Monitor, Black
206 Reviews
POLAR V800 GPS Sports Watch with Heart Rate Monitor, Black
  • Built-in GPS keeps track of your ride, run or hike measuring your speed, distance and route
  • Create and customize profiles for different sports and get exactly the data and guidance you need for each
  • Combines training load with 24/7 activity data for true recovery status
  • Compatible with H7 Heart Rate sensor while training and even while swimming
  • Compatible with Bluetooth Smart running and cycling sensors more details about your training

The Polar V800 is currently available in three colors. Since the beginning in black and since autumn 2014 also in a beautiful blue. (UPDATE: since July 2016 also in dark red.)  The weight of 79 grams is rather heavy compared to other heart rate monitors. All the technology and the powerful battery take up space and cost weight.

The thickness of 12.7 mm is also not very small. Although it looks clunky on the wrist because the watch body was nicely incorporated into the bracelet but for athletes who are looking for a low light heart rate monitor, this could disturb a little. The size of the sport does not bother me at all, when writing on the laptop it was a bit strange at first. The case of the Polar watch is made of aluminum and stainless steel and looks to my taste already extremely high quality. No other sports watch from my heart rate monitor has such a beautiful appearance.

At work, my colleagues were also very impressed by the optics of the Polar watch. Once again, the Finns manage to do this, and many of them also have the feeling they want to have. The operation is done via the nicely arranged buttons. They do not wobble, have a nice pressure point and also with gloves they can be used well.

The display is the very high resolution. The contrast is very high thanks to 128 x 128 pixels. I was able to read the numbers on display in both sun and darkness. Even text messages that you can of course also get on the Polar watch, I could read very well. Although they are already written a little smaller than the standard ads.

The gorilla glass that you might know from expensive smartphones prevents the Polar watch V800 HR from getting scratched. By the way. At the presentation at the ISPO fair 2014, the Polar pulse watch won the ISPO Award “Product of the Year 2014/2015”.

Especially for triathletes – Polar V800

The Polar heart rate monitor can record swimming, cycling and run. Well, other watches can do that too. But the Polar V800 can also record it as a coherent unit and also as a fixed sequence for a triathlon. I also find it very interesting that she records the transition time between the sports. Not for nothing are many professional triathletes running the Polar V800. (See picture below) Also almost unique, the Polar heart rate monitor can capture the heart rate while swimming. This, of course, requires the Polar H7 chest strap. But that should be clear that you should buy the Polar V800 HR only with the chest strap. The surcharge for the pulse belt is no more than 20 euros. Tip: When swimming, the belt should be very tight. Otherwise, he could slip. Ok not for me, but I swim too slowly. But my comrades often said that.

Since Polar’s update in late 2014, the V800 has been able to support both swimming and swimming in the open water. With the “Swolf” function you can even improve your swimming efficiency. Polar recommends turning off the GPS function in the water because the GymLink transmission to the H7 chest strap may interfere.

The Activity Guide of the Polar V800

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As I wrote at the beginning, the heart rate monitor Polar V800 is a training comp with Activity Guide. This means that the sports watch if you want every day proposes a personal training goal. Here, the developers have much software and experience of the hugely successful  Polar Loop Activity Tracker incorporates. Using an activity guide bar, you can always see how far you are from your training goal. This can be quite motivating for Coach Potatoes, as I am. You have countless settings that you should make best on the Polar Flow website first. Because it depends on how tall, heavy and old you are. What kind of person you are. Rather active or not. Whether you sit at your job or move a lot. All that you should enter into the Polar V800 to get as accurate as possible an initial situation. Then you have different levels 1-3 you can choose. And you get your activity goal.

The Polar V800 uses the internal 3D accelerometer to detect your wrist movement. The polar watch analyzes whether you are doing housework, intensive sports or sitting in the pub with friends. Well, ok, that’s not it. It does not recognize how many kilos of weight you are holding in the gym on the weight bench. Therefore, whenever you have an active unit where you barely move your wrist (cycling is essential), you should put on the pulse belt. Otherwise, the Polar V800 HR does not calculate very well. With the more passive units, you can do without the chest strap.

Of course, the Polar V800 also analyzes your sleep behavior. The heart rate monitor informs you if you have slept quietly or somewhat restless. Personally, the sports watch disturbed me at night. I always take her down there. Even if the evaluation was very interesting. With me came out that I sleep very restless. So I changed a lot of my sleep environment and evening routine. I think it used something. Are you interested in more of the Activity Tracker of the Polar V800?   

Smart coaching

I would translate smart coaching with “intelligent coaching.” With that, the Polar Watch tries to give the athlete a lot of help so that he can easily achieve new training successes. That can be very motivating with under, I have stated.

Training Load (training load)

The Training Load shows you how different types of training of possibly different sports can affect your training success. It shows, for example, how a bike tour with 500 meters in height compared to a slow jogging run affects your condition.

By continuously monitoring the training load, you can better tune your workout intensity and duration with your training goals. The Polar V800 HR has a specific factor for each sport and power and can thus calculate the training. (Training Load is also built in the M400 and RC3 GPS  from the Polar)

Running Index – a must at Polar Watches

If you want to increase your athletic performance or get top performance, then the running index is an excellent performance value. After each training session, the Polar V800 tells you how high your Running Index value is. The higher, the more skilled you are. It is based on heart rate and running speed. This, in turn, recognizes the Polar clock based on the built-in GPS sensor. You do not need a particular running sensor to buy it for you.

The Running Index also has the Polar watches  M400 and the RC3 GPS. Whereby only the V800 recognizes automatically whether you run uphill or downhill. Of course, that makes a lot and means that the running index is much more accurate at the Polar V800.

Remove weight with the Polar V800 HR

Yes, it’s possible. The Polar heart rate monitor V800 has with the Smart functions OwnCal, which claims to have the most accurate calorie measurement on the market. Based on your weight, your height, your age, gender and your maximum heart rate (HRmax) and the exercise load, the Polar heart rate monitor calculates the calories burned.

The consumption of calories is displayed in real time on the Polar V800. That motivates! OwnCal also shows how many calories of it were burned in% of fat and how much of it was burned in% carbohydrates. This can be especially interesting for the runners who do not want to be fitter but who want to lose a few kilos. OwnCal shows you how!

Recreation status – nice info but not anymore

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The Polar V800 HR wants to suggest the perfect balance between training and recovery before you set new training stimuli. The recovery status is based on the sum of all activities of the day. Both the training sessions as well as the everyday activities.

Training too hard and too often and not taking enough time for rest can lead to fatigue and lower your performance. In the long term, the recovery status helps you to keep the total amount of your workout under control. In the short time, it simplifies the planning of your future training sessions.

My Opinion: These recovery counselors have a handful of new, more expensive heart rate monitors. They are also quite useful for some of the average athletes. Nevertheless, I give to consider that this recovery status is only partially true. It is simply based on too many estimates.

An athlete who prepares for a triathlon or other competition will hardly miss one or the other training session just because the training computer suggests it. I think every athlete should take care of his training and listen to his body feeling. For those who do not want to do that, such a relaxation guide, like the Polar V800, is not bad at all.

Training benefits – great motivation

The Polar V800 heart rate monitor gives you immediate feedback right after your workout. That’s something we can all benefit from. Did you train very easily, quickly, moderately, hard or even at the maximum of personal heart rate?

If you want to determine the effect of different workouts, this feature tells you exactly what you want to know. You will get a quick overview of each unit, either right on the display of the Polar V800 or for detailed feedback you can access your training file or a detailed analysis.

The Fitness Test – lying down with the Polar Watch V800

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The fitness test takes precisely 5 minutes and is done while lying down. I usually do it once a week after getting up. He will show you after you have strapped on the chest strap and you start the Polar V800, where you are currently in training.

Is your shape going up or down? The fitness test is only helpful if you have not done a Kneipp tour the day before. Polar’s fitness test was based on the Cooper test (named after American sports physician Kenneth H. Cooper) Since mid-2016, the Polar V800 is available in a dark red as a JNG Special Edition at a very reasonable price. Very interesting for bikers who the wheel mount and the Bluetooth Smart Cadence Sensor is included in the bundle.

As an alternative to the Polar V800, I can recommend the Garmin Forerunner 735 XT especially for triathletes or the slightly cheaper Garmin Forerunner 235. If you are looking for a great smartwatch with many sports settings, then the Polar M600 could give you a lot of pleasure. All three pulse watches can be used very well unlike the Polar V800 even without a chest strap.

GPS signal and battery power

The Polar Watch V800 HR has a built-in LiPo battery with 350 mAh. Polar indicates a battery life of up to 13 hours in GPS training. In GPS power saving mode even up to 50 hours. (Without GPS up to 4 weeks) That’s about my experience. This makes this Polar pulse watch with the best battery life. But the clock is a bit bigger and heavier than the Polar M400.

The GPS signal has always found my Polar V800 very fast. The first time at the new location it took about 30 seconds, a few days later at the same place only a few seconds. Even thunderstorms and running in the city jungle let the GPS signal never break with me. So also here top.

Additions to the Polar V800

The Polar pulse watch V800 can be upgraded with a few other components. The chest strap H7 sensor is, of course, a must. You need to take advantage of all the functions of the heart rate monitor at all. By contrast, I think of the wheel sensor and the foot sensor relatively little. The battery life is not too long. The battery replacement is not possible. Do you buy the supplements extra, they are quite expensive, everyone costs around 60 – 70 euros. The bike mount is great!

However, since the beginning of 2016, Polar has responded and is now selling the JNG Special Edition at a discounted price. In the Special Edition, the Bluetooth Smart Cadence Sensor and the wheel mount are now included in the scope of delivery of the Polar V800  and cost almost nothing extra. Therefore, I can currently recommend the Polar V800 in the bundle to buy. 

Polar Flow and smartphone apps

The Polar V800 heart rate monitor comes with a USB cable to sync data to the PC / Mac. The software used is the Polar Flow-Sync. Here you also get more and more updates. The easiest way to read the data is via Bluetooth with your smartphone.

By tapping on the display or the H7 chest strap sensor,  you can view various settings/functions. What exactly can you set very comfortable with the smartphone app? For example, when you touch the screen, the light goes on or whatever you want to see quickly and efficiently while running.

More functions

The Polar pulse watch V800 has so many features that it would go beyond the scope here if I would describe and describe each in detail. I have not tried many of them myself since I’m not through with the 100-page manual. I want to walk more than reading. But please who has any questions can read here again.

My conclusion about the Polar Watch V800

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The Polar V800 HR is a gift for triathletes, for all athletes who are looking for a heart rate monitor not only for running it is a great training partner. For a reasonable price, you will receive a professional sports watch that delivers exact results and includes a motivating activity tracker. Likewise, you have a few smartwatch features and can use them as a very chic everyday clock.

Since mid-2016, the Polar V800 is available in a dark red as a JNG Special Edition at a very reasonable price. Very interesting for bikers who the wheel mount and the Bluetooth Smart Cadence Sensor is included in the bundle.

As an alternative to the Polar V800, I can recommend the Garmin Forerunner 735 XT especially for triathletes or the slightly cheaper Garmin Forerunner 235. If you are looking for a great smartwatch with many sports settings, then the Polar M600 could give you a lot of pleasure. All three pulse watches can be used very well unlike the Polar V800 even without a chest strap.

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