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Tuesday, 12 July 2011

garmin forerunner 610

Garmin Forerunner 610

It has been around a month-and-a-half now since I debuted the Garmin Forerunner 610 to monitor and record my runs. The 610 is the latest edition of Garmin’s famed GPS watch production line. Before I used a Forerunner, I relied on my Blackberry or the Nike+ application on my iPod. The Nike+ uses a foot pod, which meant accuracy was never there. It had to be calibrated all the time. When I bought a Blackberry, I downloaded an application called miCoach from Adidas, which was a very good running application if you’re using a GPS enabled mobile phone. However, the GPS drains life out of the Blackberry and it went kaput quite often during events which I ran in. So I turned to Garmin.

The most prominent feature of the Forerunner 610 is that this time it’s operation is fully touch screen. Unlike the overly sensitive touch bezels introduced in the previous 405, 405cx and 410 models, the 610’s touch screen does not have such problem. You either swipe, tap or scroll to change your settings, or to take a look at your different data while running. Garmin devices are worldly known for its strength in GPS, so the 610 is no exception. It has a high sensitivity GPS receiver which aptly means it takes less time to lock the satellites, and it provides improved tracking near obstacles such as trees and tall buildings.

Other features such as Auto Lap, Auto Pause and Vibration Alerts are standard in previous Forerunner models. Auto Lap detects each time you pass the starting point or when you have lapped a certain distance. Auto Pause automatically pauses your Forerunner if for example you had to take a break by the roadside to tie your shoes. All these features are customizable according to the users’ needs. There are also the Virtual Partner and Virtual Racer options which I found most intriguing Virtual Partner is for runners to run against a static pace that he or she has set, while the Virtual Racer is running against your personal best, over the same route, or an activity from another user.

After all that, you can upload your data wirelessly to your computer, and analyze your runs using an online service (which you have to register prior) at Garmin Connect. Here you can see some of the important aspects of your run such as your running distance, pace, elevation, heart rate, calories and a map where your route is shown. Those who are hooked up on the social running websites such as the dailymile or MapMyRUN, you can easily synchronize your runs once you have a Garmin Connect account. You can also do this without going into the internet using a software called Garmin Training Center.

Garmin Connect View data at Garmin Connect

The 610 uses a rechargeable lithium-ion battery, and it lasts 8 hours when in training mode. That is more than enough for me to complete my full marathon. Big Grin It may be a let down for the ultra-marathoners though, unless of course if one can complete an ultra-marathon in less than 8 hours! Tongue

All in all, the Forerunner 610 is a more-than-good-enough device for me. It has reliable GPS, tracks vital data, data transfer to a computer is simple, battery life is adequate, and decent features. It can also double up as a watch, since it looked like the normal in the streets wrist-watch to me. The standard package, which comes together with a heart monitor, is reasonably priced at RM1200 – RM1300, which is even lower than the previous models. You can also visit its website here, for more information. My advice is, if you are an avid runner, I’d truly recommend you to get one immediately. Happy

9 comments:

  1. The forerunner 405cx punya bezel is a bit annoying. No touching when basah. It'll go beserk okay maybe not beserk la, more like it'll go somewhere else coz of the sensitivity. But overall garmin watches is siok to own.

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  2. my forerunner 405 pun ada problem bila basah. Bengong!!. Lepas tu bateri pulak cepat kong..4, 5 jam je..ceh..
    Good report ye...

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  3. ouhh same watch as idola!!! yayyyy!!! :P

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  4. mas & ijam: yeah,i heard about the same thing too..not sure about the battery though..biase la bende2 elektronik ni..

    nana: sape sape? :P

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  5. Wah, dpt duit promo tak? Good report :)

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  6. hehehe..xde lah kak june..ramai org dok betanye..alang2..

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  7. 8 jam je? Tak jadi lah beli... or beli 2 lah. LOL!

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  8. 8 jam je? x cukup lah..kena cari sekurangnya 18jam :p

    nice report! sangat jambu ini jam :)

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  9. English kau speaking standard dasat woooo... Rasa macam baca suratkhabar daa. Bagus review kau (pinjam duit buleh?)

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