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Let’s get one thing out of the best way proper up entrance: The Suunto 9 is the Suunto Spartan V2. Or next-gen Spartan Extremely, or no matter you need to name it. Besides Suunto modified the naming system this go round – and now it’s referred to as Suunto 9. Thus, when you’re on the lookout for Suunto’s top-dog watch, that is the one you’re on the lookout for.

Regardless of the numerous shift in naming although (for the higher), consider the Suunto 9 as extra an evolutionary replace to the Suunto Spartan sequence, somewhat than a significant revolutionary change.  Apart from the addition of the optical coronary heart fee sensor (which Suunto had positioned in different models anyway), the one three different main modifications at current are associated to battery life, new super-cool GPS monitoring modes, and a brand new GPS chipset supplier (Sony). Really, 4 when you depend the brand new common band straps – permitting you to make use of any strap you discover on the interwebs with it.

However that doesn’t imply Suunto isn’t doing extra behind the scenes on their cellular app and web site – as they definitely are. It’s simply that these modifications don’t match properly on the again of the field, nor into this intro part.  As an alternative, they require a bunch of textual content to try to clarify. Thus how you find yourself with a 9,774 phrase overview.

Don’t fear although, you possibly can watch this a lot shorter video as a substitute – which summarizes all the brand new options after which some!

Suunto despatched over (truly, I flew to them and picked it up myself) a last manufacturing Suunto 9 unit as a loaner.  I’ve been utilizing it since Might on all kinds of exercises.  After I’m accomplished with it right here I’ll go forward and put it again in a field and ship it again to them (I in all probability gained’t fly it again over since that price me a small pile of cash final time).  That’s simply the best way I roll.  For those who discover this overview helpful, you possibly can hit up the hyperlinks on the backside to assist help the location. Let’s get cookin’.

What’s within the field:


For those who’ve seen a Suunto Ambit/Spartan field prior to now, then nothing has modified.  Apparently the corporate purchased sufficient containers to final till subsequent century (solely the sleeves change for every product). So by gosh, they’re going to make use of them.  Besides, I didn’t get the ultimate sleeve with mine again in Might, so right here’s the field topless:


Inside you’ll discover the watch, the Suunto 9 charging cable (identical because the Suunto Spartan sequence), a sticker, and a guide in a dozen languages.


Like most watch containers nowadays, they proceed to get extra minimalist with what’s inside it – and that is no completely different. That’s effective, I don’t suppose anybody actually wants one other USB wall charger anyway.


Right here’s a have a look at how issues dimension up in comparison with the prevailing Suunto Spartan Extremely.  Suunto 9 is on the left on all images.

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And from a weight standpoint, I’ve bought that too:

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In order you possibly can see, it’s only a tiny bit heavier than earlier than, however not an excessive amount of.

Lastly, as a fast refresher of what’s new within the Suunto 9 in comparison with the Suunto Spartan sequence, it comes all the way down to the next:

– Added FusedTrack: Capability to get GPS tracks with out GPS knowledge (significantly, and significantly cool)
– Switched GPS chipset suppliers from SIRF to Sony
– Addition of latest battery efficiency choices
– Capability to dynamically change battery choices mid-workout to get to complete
– Capability to enter super-low energy chrono mode to complete exercise
– Added ‘clever’ low battery warnings day earlier than your lengthy exercises
– Swappable bands utilizing business commonplace 24mm straps
– Barely greater buttons (depth), completely different bezel styling too
– Added optical coronary heart fee sensor from Valencell (newest technology 1.2 sensor set)
– Added 24×7 steady HR monitoring
– Now appropriate with new ‘Suunto’ cellular app, and Sports activities Tracker based mostly net platform
– Worth is 599EUR/$649USD, and for 50EUR/$50 you possibly can add chest HR strap

Once more, I’ll cowl all these in loads of element all through this overview, however simply in case you’re scrolling by way of, the above record might be what you’re on the lookout for.

The Fundamentals:


Usually I begin this part with the watch face, however I’m going to get all loopy and blend it up this time. We’re gonna begin with the watch band as a substitute. You recognize…trigger I’m gettin’ wild.


What’s distinctive or notable about this watch band? Nicely, it’s truly changeable…lastly. See, beforehand on the Suunto Spartan and Ambit sequence watches you couldn’t swap out the band for bands you wished (besides the Spartan Baro).  Now you possibly can. Suunto has adopted the business commonplace 24mm watch bands, so you possibly can go onto Amazon and order regardless of the heck you need.


No, actually, there’s some loopy stuff you possibly can order that ought to match:


I say ‘ought to match’ as a result of whereas it virtually at all times does, there’s at all times a small factor of hope in relation to watch straps/bands and them truly becoming.  However once more, ought to work. [Update: Commentor Renton below noted that the key to finding ones that work is to ensure the spring bar heads is 1.4mm and not the more common 0.8mm – the bar itself is 2.0mm, else there will be too much play.]

Whereas we’ve bought the unit turned over, you’ll discover that optical coronary heart fee (HR) sensor on there. That’s offered by Valencell, similar to all of Suunto’s different watches.  This unit incorporates Valencell’s newest sensor, model 1.2 That implies that Suunto truly has a bunch extra that they’ll do by way of biometrics down the street in the event that they wished to by way of firmware updates.  Once more, it’s in there – however that does require software program be written round it after which software program on apps and web sites to help it as properly.


For now although the sensor merely tracks your coronary heart fee. It does it in one in all two methods.  The primary is throughout exercises, it’ll energy on and monitor you second by second.  The second is throughout 24×7 (steady) mode.  On this mode it’s not technically steady at each 1-second. As an alternative, it activates each 10-minutes and tracks then.  Typically a bit extra often it appears as properly.  It’ll keep on until it will get a HR studying locked, which is a slight change from the previous the place if it didn’t get a HR studying to lock it simply gave up (and thus you bought gaps in your charts).  This resolves that.

You possibly can see your HR readings by way of the center fee widget on the watch by merely swiping down from the watch-face.  You possibly can then swipe to the appropriate to see your coronary heart fee over the past 12 hours:

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Observe that this 24×7 HR knowledge isn’t saved wherever past the watch. That means, it somewhat disappointingly doesn’t get transferred to both of the 2 Suunto platforms, or both of the 2 Suunto apps. It simply goes into skinny air.  Solely exercise HR knowledge is transferred, however I’ll discuss that later.

Now that we’re on the watch although, let’s again up somewhat bit to that watch face I discussed earlier earlier than I bought all wild and loopy.  Suunto lets you choose from a handful of watch faces that they’ve constructed.  In contrast to most different watches nowadays you possibly can’t customise them or make your individual, so they’re what they’re.

With the Suunto 9 although you do get a brand new watch face, as seen beneath:


This watch face reveals you complete exercise time in the direction of your weekly exercise purpose alongside the opposite edge, after which battery life within that. It additionally reveals battery life on the backside too, for some duplicitous motive. It doesn’t present day by day steps or present HR both although, like many different watch faces on different watches do nowadays.

Talking of steps, these are accessed in the identical means as HR – simply by swiping down on the display, or utilizing the down button to get to it.  From there you can even view your complete steps per week as properly.  Energy will be accessed from the very same menu by merely taping the display:

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For those who proceed swiping down you’ll get coaching standing, which supplies you complete coaching time that week in addition to restoration time.  The coaching time is proven towards your weekly train purpose, whereas restoration time is proven as remaining hours till you’re recent and able to get frisky.

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A bit additional down you’ll additionally get the altimeter and temperature knowledge, alongside the barometer studying, in addition to 12-hours variants of the altimeter and barometer knowledge:

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The altimeter will be manually adjusted by way of the settings if want be.

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Lastly inside the principle dashboard pages by way of knowledge, you’ve bought sleep knowledge.  The unit will monitor sleep (assuming you put on it to mattress).  It doesn’t should be manually began or stopped, it’ll do it routinely for you.  You can too specify a secondary do-not-disturb time for notifications, past what your cellphone already does.


The unit will present some primary particulars of sleep throughout the watch itself, in addition to by way of the newer Suunto app (however not the older Movescount one).  Observe that it doesn’t monitor your sleep HR knowledge on the app/platform, solely on the watch itself.

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Lastly, we’ll head up into the settings space briefly earlier than getting extra sport particular. It’s right here you possibly can change general settings just like the language or tones, in addition to the backlight settings.  You can too change which era zones are proven as properly.


In all probability the most important annoyance I’ve with utilizing the Suunto 9 whereas travelling is solely that it gained’t replace to the proper time zone routinely.  Just about each different watch available on the market right this moment will routinely change the time zone based mostly on both the omnipresent Bluetooth Smartphone connection or GPS sign acquisition. However within the case of the Suunto models, you must manually change to the town that you simply’re in.

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It’s additionally in these settings that you would be able to set the day by day step purpose (default is 10,000 steps), in addition to configure whether or not sleep monitoring and coaching targets are turned on.  And eventually, it’s additionally the place you pair sensors and your cellphone.  However once more, I’ll dive into all issues sport within the subsequent part.  So with that, let’s get began.

Sport Utilization:


For the overwhelming majority of purchasers of the Suunto 9, you’re going to be utilizing the watch to trace a exercise or a race.  The remaining, will probably be utilizing it for navigation. Heck, maybe you’re doing each without delay. Both means, this part is all about sports activities, and the following navigation.

To start out a exercise (both race or coaching), you’ll press the up button as soon as to get to the train menu, after which from there you’ll choose the game you need to do:

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These sports activities are customizable on Movescount, however not from the Sports activities Tracker website.  So in an effort to tweak issues like knowledge fields and such, you’ll probably need to hit up the Movescount website to customise these and different watch settings.


You possibly can see above how one can customise varied sport settings, together with knowledge fields/pages, in addition to sport-specific settings like GPS replace charges and sensors paired. All that is precisely as earlier than with different Suunto watches, excluding the brand new battery modes that I be aware within the devoted part after navigation.

With all of your customization accomplished, and your sport chosen, you possibly can go forward and tweak any final minute gadgets earlier than urgent begin.  This lets you add in interval coaching for instance, or different targets.  It additionally lets you specify a route (navigation) in addition to change the battery standing.  All of those (except for battery choices) are accessed by urgent the down button to a listing:


In terms of interval exercises, you possibly can outline a selected work and restoration period/distance, in addition to have a free-form warm-up/cool-down time interval.  It’s basically a primary on-watch interval possibility that doesn’t enable a ton of flexibility for varied different targets (i.e. setting distinctive energy targets).  Suunto additionally doesn’t help any downloadable customized structured exercises onto the Suunto 9 (akin to Garmin/Polar/Wahoo do on their models).

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However, that doesn’t imply Suunto isn’t doing distinctive energy issues.  The truth is, in relation to coaching zones, Suunto has a little bit of a leg up over the competitors.  Particularly in that they’ve zones for working energy, which Garmin lacks.  This implies you possibly can specify your working and biking energy zones individually to point out knowledge pages on, in addition to coronary heart fee zones.  So when you have a Stryd working energy meter, that’s positively excellent news.

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Which platform (Garmin or Suunto) is the most effective for working energy varies a bit on what you need out of it.  As I simply famous, Suunto has working energy zones natively, which Garmin lacks totally.  On the flipside, Suunto doesn’t report/show any of the working effectivity metrics that Garmin reveals from Stryd. Flipping again over once more, Garmin forces Stryd into utilizing third social gathering fields for working energy, whereas Suunto reveals it natively.  Which means you don’t see working energy in native fields like ‘common energy’, however as a substitute in customized fields.

As I stated, it’s not fairly black and white. I’d say that for pure runners that simply need working energy, the Suunto method is a bit higher. Whereas for these wanting the opposite knowledge that Stryd delivers, Garmin often is the higher guess.

Oh, and earlier than we press begin on this exercise (I promise you, finally we’ll), you possibly can tweak the battery profile by tapping the higher proper button, which iterates by way of the completely different battery profiles (and modifications the border colour on the display to point as such, in addition to the battery durations):


However I dive into that in way more element in a devoted part.  Thus, let’s press the beginning button (by now we’ve lengthy since acquired GPS and HR, as indicated by the 2 standing display icons) and get rolling:


At this level, you’re recording your GPS monitor, and your custom-made knowledge pages are displaying on the display.  You possibly can iterate by way of knowledge pages both by way of swipe on the touchscreen, or by utilizing the buttons on the appropriate facet.  You can too disable the touchscreen for exercise profiles if you would like, which will be helpful in actions like swimming or some winter situations.

The information fields listed here are what you make of them and the way you’ve custom-made them.  Observe that the Suunto Spartan sequence, together with the Suunto 9, doesn’t help any third social gathering knowledge fields just like the older Ambit watches did.  I haven’t heard of any path ahead to including in apps once more on the Suunto lineup.

As I usually be aware, my favourite knowledge subject/web page from Suunto is the lap one, because it permits me to simply see the laps in my exercise mid-activity and the way they evaluate.  This identical web page can also be obtainable post-workout:


In terms of issues like GPS tempo stability, I haven’t had an excessive amount of of a problem right here. It appears cheap sufficient for me whereas working, staying fairly secure (although, my working tempo stability is fairly good – which could assist).  Laps will be achieved both routinely by way of autolap on a preset distance, or manually by way of urgent the button.

After you’ve accomplished a exercise you’ll whack the cease button after which get supplied the smiley face of your option to rank your exercise.  That is then saved to Movescount for later reference.  After that you simply’ll get exercise abstract data in a protracted web page stuffed with particulars:

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All of that is additionally obtainable on Suunto’s net platforms, although the diploma of information obtainable varies on which platform you utilize.  Right here’s the identical exercise loaded to each Movescount and Suunto Sports activities Tracker.  Movescount is their legacy platform that has largely been used to this point and is being phased out.  Sports activities Tracker is what they acquired a couple of years again and is the brand new platform for brand new Suunto units going ahead.

Right here’s everything of an exercise on Sports activities Tracker:


And right here’s that very same exercise on Movescount (and be mindful, I can tweak these graphs a ton to point out far more data).


At current, Sports activities Tracker principally appears like a rehashed model of RunKeeper from half a decade in the past.  It lacks many of the sport-focused analytics present in Movescount.  The excellent news right here is that you would be able to proceed utilizing Movescount, however the dangerous information is that many of the newer options you may want round 24×7 monitoring (i.e. steps and sleep) aren’t in Movescount, or aren’t as detailed there.

Suunto says over time options will get ported over from Movescount to Sports activities Tracker, however I think we’re realistically speaking 12-18 months or so right here.  In any case, I’ve been watching this transition since final December, and I wouldn’t precisely name the progress lightning quick.

Additionally, the Sport Tracker website can’t push your exercises to third social gathering platforms akin to Strava or TrainingPeaks, however once more, you should utilize Movescount as a substitute.  It’s simply that the entire thing finally ends up being cumbersome with you having to make use of a number of apps and sync a number of occasions.  If Garmin, Polar, or Apple did this, folks can be at their door with pitchforks.

Once more, on Movescount (as seen beneath), you possibly can hook up with Strava and TrainingPeaks, and even push exercises from Movescount to Sports activities Tracker.  However that doesn’t remedy the half you largely care about utilizing the newer Sports activities Tracker platform for, which is steps/sleep/and so forth knowledge.


Finally, I merely simply don’t hassle utilizing Sports activities Tracker (the brand new platform).  I think most individuals studying this overview will fall into that very same camp.  Amer Sports activities (Suunto’s publicly traded father or mother firm), merely wants to provide Suunto way more developer sources than it has.  Like, dozens of workers extra.  And even then, it’d nonetheless be closely behind on the app/net platform facet in comparison with what rivals have.  Given Amer hasn’t accomplished that, they need to as a substitute at the least concentrate on making the third social gathering partnerships to platforms like Strava and TrainingPeaks – since that’d largely cowl the foremost bases for many customers.

(Observe: You should utilize each platforms concurrently, however not each cellular apps paired to the cellphone concurrently. The Suunto 9 can solely be paired to one of many two Suunto apps, both Movescount or the brand new ‘Suunto’ app. With a purpose to straddle each platforms, you principally want to attach your watch by way of desktop USB cable to Movescount, after which pair the cellphone to the Suunto 9. Although in that configuration, which means exercises gained’t go to Strava/TrainingPeaks until you get residence to your laptop.)


Subsequent, we’ve bought the power to navigate.  Navigation can basically happen in one in all two methods: Both as a part of a exercise/exercise, or in a standalone mode.  With the standalone mode, you aren’t recording your exercise/monitor for later evaluation – it’s like a fart within the wind, it simply disappears when you’re accomplished navigating.

Whereas when accomplished along side an ‘Train’, then it’s recorded for later evaluation.  Nonetheless, regardless of which possibility you select, issues are principally the identical by way of what you possibly can navigate to.  This consists of POI’s, which will be created on-line after which downloaded to your watch, or routes – which additionally will be created on-line.

For instance, in Movescount I can create a route such because the beneath:


You’ll discover on the facet the power to pick out which watch to sync it to.  On this case I’ve chosen the Suunto 9.  The identical is true of POI’s.

Normally, I actually just like the Suunto planner for routes, as a result of it clearly shows heatmaps and different folks’s public strikes, throughout extra than simply run and bike.  It lets you discover distinctive locations to openwater swim for instance, as a result of you possibly can filter on the place individuals are openwater swimming, like beneath:


When you’ve created your route (which you can even do by importing in GPS information or copying present actions), then you definitely’ll add it to your watch and sync your watch.  At which level it’s accessible from the navigate menu, no matter whether or not or not you’re in an exercise.


You possibly can simply view the route profile together with the elevation each previous to navigating in addition to in the course of the exercise/navigation.  Observe that to pick out a route/POI to navigate to along side a recorded exercise, you’ll merely scroll down after deciding on the train sort and choose the ‘Navigation’ possibility:

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When you’ve began the exercise or your navigation, you’ll see the deliberate route as a strong line, with the dashed line being the place I’ve been.  My present route utilizing the magnetic compass is the arrow within the center.  Merely rotating your wrist can even rotate the map.


To be clear – it is a breadcrumb path map solely, and never overlaid with any precise mapping knowledge such because the Fenix 5X or Fenix 5+ sequence have.  That might require a boatload extra storage on the machine, which it merely doesn’t have.

You possibly can zoom in/out on the map by briefly holding the center button, which helps you to then management the size of the map:


You possibly can swipe-up from the underside of the display at any time on the path/breadcrumb web page to get right into a navigation-specific menu.  That is the place you possibly can change your navigation purpose (i.e. go to ‘Discover again’, change to a POI, and so forth), in addition to save your location for future reference.


One draw back I’ve seen with mapping although is that it’s fairly sluggish to answer going off-course.  For instance on this state of affairs right here (a looped route), I went the fallacious means and it took almost 100m till the unit notified me I had gone the fallacious means.


Atop that, when it does notify you, you’ve solely bought about 2-Three seconds to note it – as a result of that display then goes away leaving you with simply your dot in the midst of nowhere.  As soon as on-route once more, you’re going to get notified briefly as properly.


The general navigation expertise works effective (I used it within the Alps as properly), nevertheless it’s robust going again from having maps on different watches to not having maps.  Following a breadcrumb path is mostly nice.  However the place it’s problematic is at multi-trail junctions the place you will have 2-Four choices, particularly if a few of these are shut collectively in angle or route.  To have the ability to rapidly reference a map has been extra beneficial than I’d have initially anticipated.

I do know definitely folks have been getting alongside simply effective utilizing breadcrumb path navigation for greater than a decade – however the identical was true of landline telephones too.  When you’ve bought good maps (together with topo knowledge), it’s superb how helpful they are often in finding out off-trail conditions or workarounds.

Nonetheless, as I stated, the navigation right here on the Suunto 9 is practical, however by 2018 requirements it’s wanting a bit dated.

New Battery & FusedTrack Modes:


Suunto says one of many greatest challenges they’ve had from a help standpoint is the best way to give steerage to ultra-distance athletes on the best way to get the most effective battery life from their units.  The product staff would provide you with all these suggestions, which had been basically only a sequence of settings to allow/disable.

However that meant the settings had been tied to a selected sport profile, somewhat than a extra basic idea.  That means that you simply particularly needed to pre-configure these all into a selected sport mode, and couldn’t simply simply use a distinct sport mode together with your particular battery setups.  So Suunto aimed to separate battery modes from sport modes by way of what they dubbed their ‘Clever Battery Modes’.  These are three and a half battery modes which simplify how battery drain happens, no matter sport mode chosen.

The best way it really works is that whenever you go to begin a exercise/train, you’ll see a battery mode possibility prominently displayed within the higher edge.  Urgent the higher proper button toggles by way of the completely different battery modes:

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This battery mode then corresponds with a slew of settings hooked up to it, nevertheless it additionally corresponds to the hours remaining.  Much more importantly, it does real-time math on how a lot battery juice you’ve left to let you determine in case your deliberate exercise will go over the period required.  For instance, you possibly can see beneath what number of hours are left for the completely different modes on my watch once I took this photograph:


The three modes are ‘Efficiency’, ‘Endurance’, and ‘Extremely’.  There’s additionally a ‘Customized’ mode that lets you discover some middle-ground between these modes when you want it.  The completely different GPS accuracy modes roughly correspond to the variety of seconds between refresh charges.  ‘Finest’ accuracy is each second, whereas ‘Good’ accuracy is each 60 seconds on the Spartan.  And ‘OK’ accuracy is each 120 seconds.  Additionally be aware that in each Endurance and Extremely modes, they use FusedTrack for Operating and Path Operating modes (extra on that within the subsequent part).

The claimed battery life for a very full cost on the watch is identical as the highest of the screenshots beneath – 25 hours for Efficiency, 50 hours for Endurance, and 120 hours for Extremely.  Right here’s the complete chart of what every mode does:


As you possibly can see, there’s truly a good bit of tweaking happening right here to get to those battery ranges, particularly within the case of the Extremely one.  It’s turning off the touchscreen and Bluetooth communications. It’s lowering the brightness all the way down to 10%, and killing off optical HR (wrist HR), in addition to lowering the variety of colours the show makes use of.  All of those tweaks add up.

However, issues truly get much more attention-grabbing than this. Suunto has added two layers of mid-activity battery switching. The primary layer triggers whenever you attain 10% battery remaining, and can ask you if you wish to change to a decrease battery mode – for instance, setting all the way down to ‘Endurance’ from ‘Efficiency’.  It’ll additionally offer you how a lot battery life you’d get out of that.  So you can also make the decision as as to if that battery life change is overkill, or not sufficient.


Right here’s what it appears like in real-life, paradoxically only a few hours in the past:


But it surely even goes a step additional than that.  Relatively than the watch dying totally, when the battery will get to a good decrease degree the unit will toggle right into a ‘Chrono mode’, which shuts off all the pieces besides a easy timer.  It turns off the accelerometer and all different capabilities to easily provide the complete end time on your exercise.  Which means if all else fails, the overall time that’s proven on Movescount and within the logbook of your watch can be appropriate, it doesn’t matter what.  Clearly you hope to by no means get to that time, however at the least it’s there.

This idea is roughly akin to what Garmin does on a few of their Edge biking models in going right into a low-battery profile mode turning numerous issues off, however, a wee bit extra drastic.

Now Suunto says they ideally don’t need folks to get into that pickle to start with, in order that they’ve added one final battery associated characteristic: Proactive battery recharge notifications. The Suunto 9 watch will truly study which days of the week you are inclined to do your lengthy runs/rides/hikes and proactively remind you the day prior if it doesn’t suppose you’d have sufficient battery to finish that.  So when you are inclined to do an 8-hour exercise every Sunday, and also you solely have 35% battery life on Saturday afternoon, it’ll remind you to provide your watch a cost.

In my 2.5 months of testing, I solely managed to get that warning simply as I used to be proofing this overview (significantly, so, like 30 minutes in the past) however it could be that my coaching schedule is kinda wonky and and not using a ton of consistency.  Whereas I are inclined to experience longer most Sunday’s, however I’ve additionally had some 5-hour rides mid-week too – in order that’s in all probability dorking issues up a bit.

However all this segues immediately into the following vital characteristic which is the brand new FusedTrack; which might be probably the most technologically revolutionary factor to come back to the Suunto 9.  Suunto has lengthy since used the ‘Fused’ branding for different areas, akin to FusedSpeed and FusedAlti.  The idea behind each of those was easy: Begin with a baseline of GPS knowledge, after which fuse it along with different sensor knowledge, akin to wrist-based accelerometer knowledge to get the absolute best real-time pacing knowledge – thus FusedSpeed.


FusedTrack although takes that to a wholly completely different degree.  The first function right here isn’t technically to provide extra correct GPS knowledge.  No, it’s to provide GPS knowledge the place no GPS knowledge exists.  See, whenever you want the Spartan to go upwards of 120 hours of ‘GPS-on’ time, which means it reduces the GPS replace frequency.  On this case, all the way down to as soon as each 60 or 120 seconds (Endurance or Extremely modes).  Meaning when you had been to plot GPS factors, you’d get a lower than superior monitor within the woods whereas working.  Certain, it’s largely effective for mountain climbing because you’re shifting sluggish sufficient – however not nice for switchbacks and such whereas working.

So what FusedTrack does is take these GPS factors each 60/120 seconds and makes use of the compass, gyro, and accelerometer to fill within the knowledge.  All of which makes an astounding quantity of logical sense.  If you consider it, if they’ve the GPS beginning location, then they’ll roughly work out all the pieces else from that time ahead.

Let’s check out a 6KM monitor I did round some woods.  Observe that points like cliffs can and can affect FusedTrack, although in taking a look at a couple of folks’s tracks which have tried it in mountains on longer path races, not horribly so (certain, it’s not good, nevertheless it’s additionally not horrendous and is unquestionably higher than lowering recording fee to each minute or so).  In any occasion, right here’s my forested comparability:


What you’re taking a look at above is spectacular.  I had deliberate three watches, however one way or the other on that backstretch I managed to cease the Suunto Coach that I had going as properly, and I didn’t discover it for an additional three minutes.  So let’s simply persist with two tracks:

Purple – Suunto 9: That is inside ‘Extremely’ mode sampling GPS as soon as each 120 seconds, and utilizing gyro/accelerometer/compass knowledge in between
Teal – Fenix 5+: That is set to regular 1-second mode, GPS+Galileo

The purpose right here isn’t to point out a ‘good monitor’ of the Fenix 5+ vs the Suunto 9. As an alternative, the purpose is to make use of the Fenix 5+ merely as a reference for the place I truly went (and it does certainly match actuality).  In fact, that’s as a result of it was sampling each single second, versus solely sampling each 2 minutes on the Suunto 9.

The patterns are actually clear.  You’ll discover that basically the Suunto 9 does rather well so long as I’m both shifting ahead, or making directional modifications which are logical.  The place it bought confused each occasions was once I did brief out and again and bumped into dead-ends.  In each instances it stumbled there, shorting my distance significantly (in complete the run was 6.01KM on the Suunto 9, versus 6.71KM on the Fenix 5+).  Just about all of that distance loss occurred in the course of the out and again sections.

Whereas once I was working persistently, it was very very shut – particularly on the straightaways.  The higher straightaway shocked me although because it dipped a bit into the sector on each side (the place I didn’t spotlight).


On this explicit run I made a degree of working in locations that had nearly no man-made buildings or electrical traces or the rest close by. There have been just a few shacks alongside the best way.

One merchandise that’s vital to notice on the 120-second Extremely mode is that the show shuts off (thus is clean).  With a purpose to see data you’ll have to faucet a button, which then turns the show again on once more, albeit the information proven is delayed till the following refresh.  That means, it’s not real-time distance on there at that time, however somewhat the space on the final level the GPS ‘checked-in’.

Additionally, the performance is restricted particularly to working and path working, since they want larger high quality (learn: constant) pacing knowledge than a standard stroll or hike would give.  And biking, after all, doesn’t offer you sufficient accelerometer knowledge to determine the pace portion (and thus, distance).  In fact, there’s additionally the truth that most individuals working greater than 24 hours (the max battery life on GPS for a single cost) are probably doing extra of a mix of strolling than pure working – and as such, that may affect accuracy (it’s solely specified for working).

Additionally, Suunto warned that it’s extremely vital you calibrate your compass with virtually nothing close by.  Like, go to a subject and calibrate it.  For those who calibrate it subsequent to a constructing or beneath energy traces or what-not, you’ll get crap for outcomes.


Now, Suunto says their visions are literally extra grand right here, particularly round swimming.  It was hoped to have FusedTrack applied in swimming by the point it shipped, however that doesn’t seem like the case but.  The purpose being to do extra of a merge of 1-second GPS monitoring with compass knowledge to get the final word openwater swim monitor.  Undoubtedly wanting ahead to that being applied as soon as Suunto is ready to.

GPS Accuracy:


There’s probably no subject that stirs as a lot dialogue and fervour as GPS accuracy.  A watch might disintegrate and offer you dire electrical shocks whereas doing so and be effective, but when it reveals you on the fallacious facet of the street?  Oh hell no, carry on the fury of the web!

GPS accuracy will be checked out in plenty of other ways, however I favor to have a look at it utilizing plenty of units in real-world situations throughout an unlimited variety of actions.  I take advantage of 2-6 different units without delay, making an attempt to get a transparent image of how a given set of units handles situations on a sure day.  Circumstances embrace all the pieces from tree/constructing cowl to climate.

Through the years I’ve continued to tweak my GPS testing methodology.  For instance, I attempt to not place two models subsequent to one another on my wrists, as that may affect sign. If I accomplish that, I’ll put a skinny cloth spacer of about 1”/3cm between them (I didn’t try this on any of my Suunto 9 exercises).  However usually I’ll merely carry different models by the straps, or connect them to the shoulder straps of my hydration backpack.  Plus, sporting a number of watches on the identical wrist is well-known to affect optical HR accuracy.

Subsequent, as famous, I take advantage of simply my day by day coaching routes.  Utilizing a single route again and again isn’t actually indicative of real-world situations, it’s simply indicative of 1 path.  The exercises you see listed here are simply my regular day by day exercises.  I’ve had fairly a little bit of number of terrain throughout the time interval utilizing the Suunto 9.  This has included runs in: Finland, Paris, Amsterdam, French Alps, Florida, US Virgin Islands, California, Germany, Austria, Italy, and many extra.  Cities and countryside, water, mountains, timber, and open-air. It’s been all over the place!

All that stated, I’m largely going to concentrate on tracks from this previous month, since that’s principally the time-period that the watch has been publicly launched and on last firmware. Sound good? Good.

Let’s begin off with one thing GPS-wise kinda straightforward, my run from this previous Saturday. It was a comparatively simple loop main out from Amsterdam in the direction of a close-by lake, round it and again once more. It was largely within the forest or alongside the canal, with solely small bits within the ‘metropolis’ (although these had been fairly low buildings).  Right here’s the overview, in contrast towards a Fenix 5+ on the opposite wrist, after which a FR935 as properly.  The Fenix5+ was in GPS+Galileo mode, the FR935 in GLONASS mode, and the Suunto 9 in Efficiency mode.  Right here’s the information:


As you possibly can see, at a excessive degree there’s no enormously fallacious chunks, all three models look fairly good at this degree.  However let’s zoom in somewhat bit, to this part approaching a bridge. Thoughts you, all models truly left the large freeway underpass appropriately, however completely different models had difficulties on the method.  On the left facet, I’m going southbound (thus, down), whereas on the appropriate facet I’m going northbound.


You possibly can see that coming into it the Suunto 9 is off within the tennis membership a bit (no massive buildings right here, simply tree cowl over a path).  The 2 different models are effective.  In the meantime, coming again by way of that space you’ll discover the three models are all offset from the precise bike path.  The Fenix 5+ is on the water’s edge, whereas the Suunto 9 and FR935 are on the within edge. I used to be on the bike path itself, technically extra near the water’s edge than not.  Certain, all the models on this return part had been inside 2-Three meters, however none had been spot-on good.  Whereas on the left facet, the Suunto 9 unit is extra incorrect than the others.

As I wander by way of the rest of the monitor although, the models had been by and huge fairly darn shut to one another. Often one would wander a couple of meters offset by some means, however largely they had been very shut.

image image

The one different part of concern was on a tree-lined path that was inside about 30-meters of some tall buildings.  On this space the Suunto 9 went a bit askew, maybe 20-meters or so adjoining to the precise path:


Wanting on the totals, the Suunto 9 and Fenix 5+ are very very shut. I’m not totally certain the place the FR935 ‘misplaced’ distance, because the tracks definitely don’t present any reducing of corners of that size. However that’s the ‘official’ distance it recorded within the .FIT file, so it’s what it’s.


As for ascent, Suunto watches don’t correctly adhere to the .FIT file spec for displaying that metric, thus, we don’t enumerate it within the analyzer.  Nonetheless, on Movescount it does present as 16m for this run, which may very well be proper. My run included a few bridges, so my guess is between 15 and 30 meters can be correct.  Although, you possibly can see from the general elevation plot that the Suunto 9 did that an incoming storm clearly shifted the altimeter downwards:


Nonetheless, the Fenix 5+ plot did the very same, beginning/ending in the identical spots, however with a 30ft unfavorable unfold:


Observe that whereas there are sections of the Netherlands which are beneath sea degree, my particular part isn’t a kind of.

Okay, shifting onto one thing positively not beneath sea degree – the Italian Alps. Really, technically it’s a mix of Swiss and Italian Alps, because the experience goes by way of each.  The Stelvio go experience is famed after all for its jagged street etched into the facet of the mountain, pressuring each cyclists (and runners), in addition to GPS units.  It’s additionally a enjoyable take a look at of altimeters as properly.

At a excessive degree, right here’s the loop I did. I positively notice a chart zoomed at this degree is nearly ineffective, however we’ve gotta begin someplace.  Plus, you possibly can go all interactive if you would like by simply utilizing the Analyzer hyperlinks that I’ve offered.


Let’s zoom into the street somewhat extra intently although.  The primary level the place all of the models have bother is a tunnel of kinds. Extra like a thingy over the roadway to guard it from slides and such.  As you possibly can see, no GPS is an effective match for a ceiling:


Because the switchbacks begin although, for probably the most half all of the models are fairly darn shut:


I don’t actually see any clear winner or loser amongst them. All of them just about persist with the street, minus very occasional flirtings with the sting of the street by at most a meter or two:


And once more, the identical up larger as properly:


Even on the town, issues are fairly tame.  You see some scrambles as I enter/exit one of many buildings, and doing a little taking pictures of video/images close to the highest, however that’s all contained inside a small space.  You possibly can click on to increase these.

image image

It isn’t till I get virtually all the best way again all the way down to the valley flooring, on the Swiss facet, going by way of some last switchbacks on a fast descent that I begin to see some separation:


However even to try to choose that aside can be robust. Every may be very near the street, with tall timber and occasional rock cliffs. And once more, hardly a transparent winner/loser there.  Total, I’d say all models did very properly right here.

So what about elevation acquire?  Right here’s that plot:


It’s very shut going up, with all of the models very slowly spreading aside a bit as I climbed.  On the best way down you possibly can see the Fenix 5+ displaying a bug launched in current firmware that overly smooths quick descent knowledge.  That bug was supposedly fastened after my experience (within the final 10 days or so), however I haven’t been within the mountains since then to verify it.

As for which one bought the summit elevation appropriate?  Nicely, the said elevation of the go at a sign-post alongside the street is 2760 meters.

The Suunto 9 at that very same level?  2760.1 meters

No person likes overachievers, Suunto.

Very strong, properly accomplished.

Okay, let’s get within the water.

Now you might keep in mind my video from final month the place the Suunto 9 and Fenix 5+ confronted off within the water…and each face-planted in failure. Severely, their collective ranges of suck would impress even the most important of jet engines.

However I took them again out once more onto the water a couple of days in the past for a redux.  Similar rivals, identical course, heck, even the identical topless woman close to the beginning space.  I’m all about consistency.  And this time, issues had been positively completely different – ultimately for Suunto:


Like earlier than I used a FR935 hooked up to my swim buoy as a reference GPS.  This offered a recognized good above the water for which to check.  In any case, with openwater swim modes the social gathering trick is in having the GPS work out the place you went, regardless of being beneath the water half the time.  However as you possibly can see above, this time the Suunto 9 did very very properly.

Rattling, it was strong.  It tracks virtually exactly alongside the reference GPS monitor all the time. At worst it was a couple of meters away, although, it did truncate very barely the return for some motive – you possibly can see it’s a bit brief.  This regardless of ready 10-15 seconds above water afterwards simply to make sure.


Once more, all through the swim, zero apparent points – each within the recorded knowledge, but in addition extra importantly whereas I used to be swimming as properly.  Examine that to the Garmin Fenix 5+ that stopped counting distance every time it reached 550y from the final time I finished (which, paradoxically, was an enchancment over the June swim the place it simply didn’t depend distance in any respect).


In fact, you might be questioning the place the Fenix 5+ monitor is within the above – it’s the Drunk Uncle blue line that’s meandering throughout your display like an errant line of mustard that missed the recent canine totally.  Distance-wise, the Suunto 9 and Fenix 5+ ended up very shut, as did the reference buoy.  Within the case of the Fenix 5+, that’s largely simply dumb luck of being fallacious half the time and proper half the time.


As for Garmin’s swim-specific woes – I don’t know what’s up there. They made one go at fixing it, nevertheless it’s clearly not doing it. Not less than not in GPS+Galileo mode.  I think they’ll determine this one out, merely as a result of the items that had been damaged on the Fenix 5+ had been additionally damaged on the FR935 and Fenix 5 in current firmware updates.  Thus collectively, Garmin simply must spherical up a bunch of workers, stick watches on them, and have a swim day or one thing to get some knowledge.

That apart, from what I’m seeing on my particular Suunto 9 with GPS tracks, issues are largely good. Excellent, no. However largely good. I do know some individuals are seeing ‘wobbles’ on their Suunto 9 GPS tracks, which is including about 1-2% distance.  I haven’t seen that on my runs, it appears to trace cleanly and be wobble-free.  Additionally, as some of us know I had some tough GPS tracks again in June (each above and within the water) – however I haven’t seen these right here in July – so I feel issues is likely to be settling out.

(Observe: All the charts in these accuracy parts had been created utilizing the DCR Analyzer device.  It lets you evaluate energy meters/trainers, coronary heart fee, cadence, pace/tempo, GPS tracks and many extra. You should utilize it as properly on your personal gadget comparisons, extra particulars right here.)

Coronary heart Charge Accuracy:


Earlier than we transfer on to the take a look at outcomes, be aware that optical HR sensor accuracy is somewhat different from particular person to particular person.  Features akin to pores and skin colour, hair density, and place can affect accuracy.  Place, and the way the band is worn, are *an important* items.  A unit with an optical HR sensor needs to be cosy.  It doesn’t want to depart marks, however you shouldn’t have the ability to slide a finger beneath the band (at the least throughout exercises).  You possibly can put on it a tiny bit looser the remainder of the day.

Okay, so in my testing, I merely use the watch all through my regular exercises.  These exercises embrace all kinds of intensities and situations, making them nice for accuracy testing.  I’ve bought regular runs, interval exercises on each bike and working, in addition to tempo runs and rides – and even working up and down a mountain.

For every take a look at, I’m sporting further units, normally 3-Four in complete, which seize knowledge from different sensors.  Usually I’d put on a chest strap (normally the HRM-TRI or Wahoo TICKR X), in addition to one other optical HR sensor watch on the opposite wrist (together with largely the Scosche Rhythm 24). Observe that the numbers you see within the higher proper nook are *not* the averages, however somewhat simply the precise level my mouse is sitting over.  Observe all this knowledge is analyzed utilizing the DCR Analyzer, particulars right here.

Just like the GPS accuracy part, I’m largely going to concentrate on actions from this previous month, somewhat than issues in beta. First up is that very same previous Saturday run from above.  This was about as completely secure a run as humanly attainable when it got here to depth.  I merely began off and let my HR slowly rise all through it.  The HR monitor needs to be virtually completely flat, simply rising slowly.  Right here’s the information.


As you possibly can see, the Suunto 9 had different concepts.  Particularly, it thought I used to be having a coronary heart assault the primary 10 minutes.  I don’t know why after that time it determined to hitch the remainder of us, nevertheless it did, after which it was completely effective for a protracted whereas earlier than beginning to lose the plot once more in the direction of the final 20-30 minutes.  I’m unsure what else there may be to say about that run from a HR standpoint.  It was fairly simple actually – the accuracy sucked initially, after which was completely effective for nearly an hour, earlier than going a bit wonky once more.

However issues don’t at all times begin out wonky.  For instance, take this additionally comparatively simple run I did a couple of days prior. I used to be time-limited, so it solely ended up being about 30 minutes, however you’ll see that by and huge it tracks properly sufficient:


The one caveat can be on the very peak of that brief dash, that it doesn’t fairly nail the utmost HR – it falls a bit brief.  However in any other case, the three models monitor very cleanly all through the run.  Observe the explanation why the HR appears sorta like Tetris blocks above is that the size isn’t too massive and my variations in HR are fairly small, so it’s like little blocks up/down.

Now we’ll shift over to driving, and fortunately that Stelvio experience is a superb proxy for displaying numerous experience varieties in a single experience.  From steady-state driving to sprints, descending to cease and go.  It’s good – even a café cease.  Right here’s that beast of a HR chart:


Now, across the 2hr 42min marker is the place we reached the summit after which did a bunch of filming stuff and even went inside to warm-up and have a drink.  What’s semi-interesting right here is that on the 3hr marker I truly paused the Suunto unit by way of recording, nevertheless it apparently nonetheless data the HR knowledge in paused mode.  I had particularly paused it and the Garmin in order that they wouldn’t do funky GPS stuff inside for an hour.  Anyway, thought that was attention-grabbing.

Wanting on the climb first, right here we go:


Right here’s a easy breakdown of the timeline above:

00:00:00-00:15:00: Heading by way of city simply, stopped briefly to get sunscreen at retailer
00:15:00-01:22:00: Dying.
01:22:00-01:28:00: Not dying, stopped at a viewpoint.
01:28:00-02:22:00: Dying once more.
02:22:00-02:32:00: Not dying, stopped to fill water bottles and shoot some video.
02:32:00-03:00:00: Dying once more.

Now, what’s attention-grabbing right here is you possibly can see how shut the HR was between all of the units whereas truly climbing at a steady-pace.


There’s some slight blips right here and there, which can be on account of holding a digicam or such whereas climbing and the optical HR sensor, however by and huge, issues are good…besides that final part from 2hr32minutes and upwards.  I’ve bought no concept why everybody went all wonky for this last part, because it was no completely different than the remaining.

After which there’s the descent:


Clearly, that’s a cluster-fudge. Clearly the Suunto is most fallacious at 50-60bpm, however the Fenix 5+ isn’t far behind on the wrong-train.  What about that yellow line I added?  Humorous you ask.

That’s the place we stopped descending and needed to do legit work for 20 minutes throughout the valley flooring, so once more, a pleasant steady-state effort.  As you possibly can see, issues are at the least within the ballpark there.

Finally – these outcomes match precisely what I’ve seen on in all probability dozens of rides with the Suunto 9 since receiving it: Its biking HR accuracy is completely effective whenever you’re doing a gentle tempo or different steady-state effort.  It’s completely ineffective when doing the rest.  The excellent news is that they’re in good firm there, because the Fenix 5+ is in the identical boat.

Subsequent, let’s have a look at a health club/circuit exercise.  I’ll say upfront this graph is hard to learn, however when you at the least learn this paragraph, it’ll make sense.  I had on one wrist the Suunto 9, and the opposite the Fenix 5+. All workouts/actions on this set had been dual-handed, if involving fingers, so equal pressure on each. I additionally had a Wahoo TICKR-X HR strap as properly, which was paired to a FR935.  Initially I put that on a stationary water bottle, as that appeared like a logical place for it (to not intervene with both wrist).  However then a few the stations took me out of vary of the bottle, so that you see it drop briefly.  On the 2nd and third rounds I went forward and simply hooked up the FR935 to my waistband so I had good connectivity.

Right here’s what that knowledge appears like:


So what you’re seeing is comparatively easy:

A) Purple drops once I walked out of vary early on, simply ignore these.
B) The Fenix 5+ did blah, not horrendous, however not nice. Simply sorta within the tough ballpark among the time, and a bit exterior others.
C) The Suunto 9 did worse than both, seemingly oscillating everywhere extra usually

Often all three units agreed, however hardly fairly often.  It was extra probably the TICKR and Fenix 5+ would agree, however even that was hardly ever spot-on, it was once more extra within the basic neighborhood.

So the place are issues? Nicely, like I stated – I attempted to select a sampling from a wide range of sports activities, that I felt most mirrored what I’ve seen over the previous few months.  In abstract, I’d say:

A) Operating: Usually OK, however I see some points initially of runs generally, and a tiny little bit of lag on some sprints.
B) Biking: For steady-state driving, it’s effective, however any kind of cease/go driving, or descending and all of it falls aside
C) Health club exercises: Appears to be all around the map right here
D) Swimming: Whereas I didn’t analyze it above, you possibly can have a look at my linked swim HR knowledge within the GPS units.  It didn’t appear terribly correct.

Finally, I feel the most important problem Suunto has with HR accuracy on the Suunto 9 is solely the design of the Suunto 9.  It’s a really ‘top-heavy’ machine, which any optical HR sensor firm will inform you isn’t best as a result of it causes bounce, and bounce interferes with the measurement of HR readings optically.  It’s why most different watches with optical HR sensors attempt to preserve a low-profile on the wrist, and attempt to scale back weight.

The truth is, Suunto themselves greater than a 12 months in the past famous their issues about including an optical HR sensor to the Spartan Extremely for exactly these causes – and in the end, they had been spot-on: It produces much less correct outcomes than their inexpensive watches with the very same sensor (which I’ve had higher luck at).

In fact, these outcomes aren’t all that completely different from Garmin’s Fenix 5+ optical HR outcomes both. Certain, Garmin has fared higher in each HR take a look at right here, however for something however working, I’d in all probability nonetheless defer to another kind of HR sensor as a substitute of the built-in ones if I used to be targeted on wanting correct HR for that exercise.  However that’s simply me.

Product Comparability Charts:

I’ve added the Suunto 9 into the product comparability charts, which lets you evaluate it towards every other merchandise I’ve reviewed or had hands-on time with.

For the aim of this overview I’ve in contrast it towards the Fenix 5+, Fenix 5, and Suunto Spartan Extremely watches.  These are realistically the models you’d be evaluating towards. As a lot as folks may need to evaluate it towards the Polar V800, I don’t suppose there’s anyone nowadays contemplating a brand new V800 vs a brand new Suunto 9.  However worry not, in case you are, you possibly can merely evaluate them by way of the full product comparability device.

Perform/CharacteristicSuunto 9 BaroSuunto Spartan ExtremelyGarmin Fenix 5 Plus (5/5S/5X)Garmin Fenix 5 (5/5S/5X)
Copyright DC Rainmaker – Up to date October 25th, 2020 @ 6:09 am New Window
Worth$599 (non-baro is $499)$699$699/699EUR$599
Product Announcement DateJune fifth, 2018June seventh, 2016June 17th, 2018Jan 4th, 2017
Precise Availability/Transport DateJune 26th, 2018August 2016June 17th, 2018March 2017
GPS Recording PerformanceSureSureSure (with Galileo too)Sure
Information SwitchUSB & Bluetooth SensibleUSB & Bluetooth SensibleUSB/Bluetooth Sensible/WiFiUSB/Bluetooth Sensible/WiFi (Sapphire solely)
WaterproofingSure – 100mSure – 100mSure – 100mSure – 100m
Battery Life (GPS)As much as 120 HoursAs much as 65 hoursAs much as 32hrs in GPS-on, as much as 85hrs in UltraTrac GPS (varies by mannequin)As much as 24hrs in GPS-on, as much as 75hrs in UltraTrac GPS
Recording IntervalVariableVariable1S or Sensible1S or Sensible
Fast Satellite tv for pc ReceptionNiceNiceNiceNice
Backlight GreatnessNiceNiceNiceNice
Capability to obtain customized apps to unit/machineNoNoYEsYEs
Acts as day by day exercise monitor (steps, and so forth…)SureSteps solely (not distance/sleep)SureSure
MusicSuunto 9 BaroSuunto Spartan ExtremelyGarmin Fenix 5 Plus (5/5S/5X)Garmin Fenix 5 (5/5S/5X)
Can management cellphone musicNoNoSureSure
Has music storage and playbackNoNoSureNo
Streaming CompaniesNoNoSpotify, Amazon Music, Deezer, iHeartRadioNo
FundsSuunto 9 BaroSuunto Spartan ExtremelyGarmin Fenix 5 Plus (5/5S/5X)Garmin Fenix 5 (5/5S/5X)
Contactless-NFC FundsNoNoSureNo
ConnectivitySuunto 9 BaroSuunto Spartan ExtremelyGarmin Fenix 5 Plus (5/5S/5X)Garmin Fenix 5 (5/5S/5X)
Bluetooth Sensible to Cellphone ImportingSureSureSureSure
Cellphone Notifications to unit (i.e. texts/calls/and so forth…)SureSureSureSure
Reside Monitoring (streaming location to web site)NoNoSureSure
Group monitoringNoNoSureSure
Emergency/SOS Message Notification (from watch to contacts)NoNoNoNo
Constructed-in mobile chip (no cellphone required)NoNoNoNo
BikingSuunto 9 BaroSuunto Spartan ExtremelyGarmin Fenix 5 Plus (5/5S/5X)Garmin Fenix 5 (5/5S/5X)
Designed for bikingSureSureSureSure
Energy Meter SuccesfulSureSureSureSure
Energy Meter Configuration/Calibration ChoicesSureSureSureSure
Energy Meter TSS/NP/IFNoNoSureSure
Velocity/Cadence Sensor SuccesfulSureSureSureSure
Strava segments stay on machineNoNoSureSure
Crash detectionNoNoNoNo
OperatingSuunto 9 BaroSuunto Spartan ExtremelyGarmin Fenix 5 Plus (5/5S/5X)Garmin Fenix 5 (5/5S/5X)
Designed for workingSureSureSureSure
Footpod Succesful (For treadmills)SureSureSureSure
Operating Dynamics (vertical oscillation, floor contact time, and so forth…)NoNoWITH RD POD, HRM-TRI OR HRM-RUN (NOT VIA OPTICAL HR)WITH RD POD, HRM-TRI OR HRM-RUN (NOT VIA OPTICAL HR)
Operating EnergyWith further sensorWith further sensorWith further sensor
VO2Max EstimationSureSureYEsYEs
Race PredictorNoNoSureSure
Restoration AdvisorSureSureSureSure
Run/Stroll ModeNoNoSureSure
Monitor Recognition ModeNo
SwimmingSuunto 9 BaroSuunto Spartan ExtremelyGarmin Fenix 5 Plus (5/5S/5X)Garmin Fenix 5 (5/5S/5X)
Designed for swimmingSureSureSureSure
Openwater swimming modeSureSureYEsYEs
Lap/Indoor Distance MonitoringSureSureSureSure
Document HR underwaterSureSureWITH HRM-TRI/HRM-SWIM (Not with optical HR)WITH HRM-TRI/HRM-SWIM (Not with optical HR)
Openwater Metrics (Stroke/and so forth.)SureSureSureSure
Indoor Metrics (Stroke/and so forth.)SureSureYEsYEs
Indoor Drill ModeNoNoSureSure
Indoor auto-pause characteristicNoNoNo (it’s going to present relaxation time afterwards although)No (it’s going to present relaxation time afterwards although)
Change pool dimensionSureSureYEsYEs
Indoor Min/Max Pool Lengths15m/y to 1,200m/y15m/y to 1,200m/y14M/15Y TO 150Y/M14M/15Y TO 150Y/M
Capability to customise knowledge fieldssuresureSureSure
Can change yards to metersSureSureSureSure
Captures per size knowledge – indoorsSureSureSureSure
Indoor AlertsNoNoSureSure
TriathlonSuunto 9 BaroSuunto Spartan ExtremelyGarmin Fenix 5 Plus (5/5S/5X)Garmin Fenix 5 (5/5S/5X)
Designed for triathlonSureSureSureSure
Multisport modeSureSureSureSure
ExercisesSuunto 9 BaroSuunto Spartan ExtremelyGarmin Fenix 5 Plus (5/5S/5X)Garmin Fenix 5 (5/5S/5X)
Create/Comply with customized exercisesNoNoSureSure
On-unit interval CharacteristicSureSure (added Mar 31st, 2017)YEsYEs
Coaching Calendar PerformanceSureSureSureSure
CapabilitiesSuunto 9 BaroSuunto Spartan ExtremelyGarmin Fenix 5 Plus (5/5S/5X)Garmin Fenix 5 (5/5S/5X)
Auto Begin/CeaseNoNoSureSure
Digital Accomplice CharacteristicNoNoYEsYEs
Digital Racer CharacteristicNoNoSureSure
Data PR’s – Private Data (diff than historical past)NoNoSureSure
Everyday watch capabilitySureSureSureSure
Searching/Fishing/Ocean InformationNoNoSureSure
Tidal Tables (Tide Data)NoNoNoNo
Jumpmaster mode (Parachuting)NoNoSureSure
GeocachingNoNoThrough GPS coordinatesThrough GPS coordinates
Climate Show (stay knowledge)NoNoSureSure
NavigateSuunto 9 BaroSuunto Spartan ExtremelyGarmin Fenix 5 Plus (5/5S/5X)Garmin Fenix 5 (5/5S/5X)
Comply with GPS Monitor (Programs/Waypoints)SureSureSureYEs
Markers/Waypoint RouteSureSureSureSure
Routable/Visible Maps (like automotive GPS)NoNoSureSure (5X Solely)
Again to beginSureSureSureSure
Impromptu Spherical Journey Route CreationNoNoSureSure (5X Solely)
Obtain programs/routes from cellphone to unitSureSureSureSure
SensorsSuunto 9 BaroSuunto Spartan ExtremelyGarmin Fenix 5 Plus (5/5S/5X)Garmin Fenix 5 (5/5S/5X)
Altimeter SortBarometricBarometricBarometricBarometric
Compass SortMagneticMagneticMagneticMagnetic
Optical Coronary heart Charge Sensor internallySureNoSureSure
SpO2 (aka Pulse Oximetry)NoNoFenix 5X Plus solelyNo
Coronary heart Charge Strap SuitableSureSureSureSure
ANT+ Coronary heart Charge Strap SuccesfulNoNoSureSure
ANT+ Velocity/Cadence SuccesfulNoNoSureSure
ANT+ Footpod SuccesfulNoNoSureSure
ANT+ Energy Meter SuccesfulNoNoSureSure
ANT+ Weight Scale SuccesfulNoNoNoNo
ANT+ Health Gear (Health club)NoNoNoNo
ANT+ Lighting ManagementNoNoSureSure
ANT+ Bike Radar IntegrationNoNoSureSure
ANT+ Coach Management (FE-C)NoNoNoNo
ANT+ Distant ManagementNoNoNo (can management VIRB although)No (can management VIRB although)
ANT+ eBike CompatibilityNoNoNoNo
ANT+ Muscle Oxygen (i.e. Moxy/BSX)NoNoSureSure
ANT+ Gear Shifting (i.e. SRAM ETAP)NoNoSureSure
Shimano Di2 ShiftingNoNoSureSure
Bluetooth Sensible HR Strap SuccesfulSureSureSureSure
Bluetooth Sensible Velocity/Cadence SuccesfulYEsYEsSureSure
Bluetooth Sensible Footpod SuccesfulSureSureSureSure
Bluetooth Sensible Energy Meter SuccesfulSureSureYEsYEs
Temp Recording (inner sensor)SureSureSureSure
Temp Recording (exterior sensor)NoNoSureSure
Software programSuunto 9 BaroSuunto Spartan ExtremelyGarmin Fenix 5 Plus (5/5S/5X)Garmin Fenix 5 (5/5S/5X)
PC SoftwarePC/MacPC/MacGarmin CategoricalGarmin Categorical
Net SoftwareSuunto MovescountSuunto MovescountGarmin JoinGarmin Join
Cellphone AppiOS /AndroidiOS /AndroidiOS/Android/Home windows CellphoneiOS/Android/Home windows Cellphone
Capability to Export SettingsNoNoNoNo
BuySuunto 9 BaroSuunto Spartan ExtremelyGarmin Fenix 5 Plus (5/5S/5X)Garmin Fenix 5 (5/5S/5X)
Intelligent Coaching – Save with the VIP programHyperlink
Aggressive Bike ownerHyperlinkHyperlink
DCRainmakerSuunto 9 BaroSuunto Spartan ExtremelyGarmin Fenix 5 Plus (5/5S/5X)Garmin Fenix 5 (5/5S/5X)
Evaluation HyperlinkHyperlinkHyperlinkHyperlinkHyperlink

And don’t overlook you can also make your individual comparability chart by way of the full product comparability device.



Suunto’s in a tricky spot by way of competitors nowadays, they usually admit it themselves. Once I met with them they had been clear that they’re not making an attempt to compete on characteristic counts with Garmin. It’s merely not going to win there, Suunto simply doesn’t have the sources (particularly, builders) to take action.  As an alternative, Suunto is aiming to compete on making a tool they consider is extra sturdy and attuned to what endurance athletes need: Higher battery life, higher GPS and altimeter tracks, and strong reliability.

In terms of reaching these objectives, it could simply be too quickly.  In an effort to seek out these higher GPS tracks, Suunto modified GPS chipset distributors as famous, which implies they’re going by way of a little bit of a teething section proper now with the brand new Sony chipsets.  As I tweeted although, fixing GPS accuracy points is at all times a really lengthy street – and generally that street doesn’t have a contented ending.

What is obvious although is that Suunto’s work in long-battery situations is extremely cool, and positively market main.  For those who’re somebody aiming to do a run (particularly, a run) greater than 32 hours, then the Suunto 9 most positively needs to be atop your record. The 32-hour marker is the max that Garmin can do at 1-second GPS recording, so when you’re past that time it comes all the way down to a low-battery bake-off between Garmin and Suunto, and Suunto’s tracks win each time in that mode on account of their new FusedTrack.  As I stated, it’s extremely cool. Completely good? No. However nonetheless actually rattling cool and higher than what Garmin gives.

For those who’re utilizing the machine for beneath 32 hours of GPS-battery life, then the Suunto 9 pitch is a more durable one.  Just about all of the options applied into it had been focused on the Extremely runner.  The corporate eschewed including in among the decrease priced Suunto Three options round adaptive coaching plans into the Suunto 9 – thus minimizing attraction to those that may need these capabilities and aren’t planning on working a 50Ok race anytime quickly.

Lastly, I hope that as we quick ahead to the tip of the 12 months and past we’ll see extra options shifted from Movescount into the brand new Sports activities Tracker platform, enabling that to higher compete with…properly…Suunto’s very personal present platform.  Doing so, in flip, makes the Suunto 9 extra interesting, because it begins to consolidate the assorted knowledge streams it’s amassing into one cohesive place.

Discovered this overview helpful? Help the Website!

Hopefully you discovered this overview helpful.  On the finish of the day, I’m an athlete similar to you on the lookout for probably the most element attainable on a brand new buy – so my overview is written from the standpoint of how I used the machine.  The critiques usually take a variety of hours to place collectively, so it’s a good bit of labor (and labor of affection).  As you in all probability seen by wanting beneath, I additionally take time to reply all of the questions posted within the feedback – and there’s fairly a little bit of element in there as properly.

I’ve partnered with Backcountry & Aggressive Bike owner, which assist help the location right here whenever you buy by way of them.

Suunto 9 GPS Watch
Suunto 9 Baro GPS Watch
Sunnto 9 Baro Titanium GPS Watch 

For European/Australian/New Zealand readers, you can even pickup the unit by way of Wiggle on the hyperlinks beneath, which helps help the location too! With Wiggle new prospects get 10GBP (or equal in different currencies) off their first order for something over 50GBP by utilizing code [Currently Disabled] at check-out after clicking the hyperlinks beneath.

Suunto 9 GPS Watch (EU/UK/AU/NZ – Wiggle)
Suunto 9 Baro GPS Watch (EU/UK/AU/NZ – Wiggle)

Moreover, you can even use Amazon to buy the unit (all colours proven after clicking by way of to the left) or equipment (although, no low cost on Amazon).  Or, the rest you choose up on Amazon helps help the location as properly (socks, laundry detergent, cowbells).  For those who’re exterior the US, I’ve bought hyperlinks to all the main particular person nation Amazon shops on the sidebar in the direction of the highest.  Although, Intelligent Coaching additionally ships there too and also you get the 10% low cost.

And eventually, right here’s a useful record of a few of my favourite equipment for Suunto watches. In fact, being Bluetooth Sensible appropriate, you don’t need to restrict issues to only Suunto equipment (actually, I wouldn’t suggest any Suunto-branded equipment).

Polar H9
Wahoo Cadence
Wahoo RPM

Thanks for studying!

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