Polar M430 Heart Rate Accuracy
Within 24 hours of the new Polar M430 being released I had received an email asking me HOW ACCURATE is the heart rate? So without further ado I have been testing the Polar M430 in parallel with either a Suunto Spartan Sport HR (chest strap) or the Garmin Edge 820 with ANT+ HR sensor for the last month. I now have over 20 different sessions from short intervals on the turbo trainer and treadmill to 8 mile runs and 30 mile road rides.
I can confirm, as far as my tests have concluded, it’s the BEST wrist based heart rate sensor I have ever used. The latest Garmin Elevate found on the Forerunner 35, Fenix 5 and Vivosmart 3 is very good, as is the TomTom Spark 3 and Adventurer. But this new Polar M430 hasn’t dropped out or spiked ONCE in over 20 test sessions.
CardioCritic has performed more heart rate accuracy tests here.
Heart Rate Graphs
The graphs below were acquired from am 8 mile fast / hard road ride on a local Hunstanton Loop (Glebe Tri Route).
Edge 820 with ANT+ Heart Rate (Chest Strap)
This is the CONTROL heart rate acquired from a BlueLeza ANT+ chest sensor working with a Garmin Edge 820.
Polar M430 Heart Rate (wrist based)
This is the same ride data acquired directly off the wrist from the Polar M430.
Comparison / Overlay of HR Data
This graph shows the Garmin Edge Heart Rate superimposed ABOVE the Polar M430 trace. I did try layering it directly on top … however, they are SO SIMILAR it was hard to see any difference. So the TOP trace is the Edge 820 from CHEST STRAP and the LOWER red line is the heart rate trace acquired off my wrist using the M430.
Conclusions and Summary
I’m not a sports scientist so my judgement is based purely on comparing the graphs of over 20 rides and runs. They all look like these above. They M430 follows the peaks and troughs of the chest strap acquired heart rate with extreme accuracy. I have tested the Polar M430 for over 60 hours and I can say with confidence that I have not had even one spurious spike or erratic drop out. WELL DONE Polar. The Polar M430 WRIST BASED heart rate is EXCELLENT and quite possibly the best off the wrist heart rate sensor on the market.
More Polar M430 Resources
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Video Review – Polar M430