Should I buy the CS600 w/ power?

Discussion in 'Power Training' started by MattQ, Mar 5, 2008.

  1. BtonRider

    BtonRider New Member

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    I'm still skeptical about this. The more I think about it the less confident I am in the Polar product. If you're on a nice, smooth road the vibrations will be much less than on rough, chip-n-seal, obviously. If you're picking up on those vibrations to determine the tension on the chain, the intensity and/or frequency of those vibrations will be dependent on the quality of road surface you’re on. Thus the road quality will affect your measure of tension (and in turn power).

    I also find it interesting that when it comes to the CS600 everyone questions the quality of the data. People talk about wanting more features or the price of the PowerTap or SRM, but the features they have apparently are spot-on reliable. What’s the point of paying $700 for something you can’t trust 100% of the time? If you watch the sales you can pick up a PowerTap for only $100 more than the Polar CS600.
     


  2. vetboy

    vetboy New Member

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    I still am not convinced that I have made myself clear. The size of road vibration has nothing to do with what is read by the power meter pick-up. A rough road will not result in a different power reading than a smooth road. The pick-up is only reading chain vibration that results from the power you put to the chain.

    As for price - I'm aways suprised when people say you can get a powertap for a similar to the polar - they never mention the new rim, spokes and build you will have to pay for.

    Joe
     
  3. RChung

    RChung New Member

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    I wouldn't have said that body position is wildly variable since it's something you can control. Hold your position. I didn't say--but should have--that you must not use your brakes. Wind is a trickier issue but as long as it's consistent and not gale force you can correct for it. The bottom line is that it is possible to do field tests that would show whether the Polar's readings differ for different ring-cog combinations.
     
  4. RChung

    RChung New Member

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    If you watch the sales it's possible to get a PT Pro w/ wheel for about $100 more than the CS600 + power module. OTOH, a used S710+power module is often quite a bit cheaper than a PT w/wheel. On yet another hand (if you have three), that means the PT holds more of its initial value.
     
  5. goodboyr

    goodboyr New Member

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    Just came back from a 2 hour ride with two buddies. Theyve got PT's, Ive got the CS600. We all matched within reasonable amounts. I'm happy!
     
  6. vetboy

    vetboy New Member

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    I got my CS600 for $500 brand new. Can you find a new PT with wheel for that?
     
  7. jcjordan

    jcjordan New Member

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    Having had a Polar CS600 now for nearly 12 months I though I might throw my 2c in.

    I have never had any problems with my unit like some other so I and have gotten consistent data on all terrains and road surfaces and cant see why this would effect the measure of power as its based on chain speed and tension.

    I know with the previous power unit for the S series there were some problems with using it on some turbo trainers, my understanding was that this had something to do with magnetic field interference. Having spoken to a mate who has used the previous unit and the current one he never had any problems but he has always used fluid based resistance trainers.

    In regards to the accuracy of the data I think this is mostly down to poor set up by the user. Last January I had the opportunity to run a PT wheel while using my CS600 and the values coming from the two units was almost identical (at most a 5w difference both up and down from each unit). The CS600 was a little slow on occasion to pick up the first initial surges of power, but I am not bothered by this.

    If you do buy the C600 get onto the web and look at the set up instructions provided by a number of different sites as the polar ones provided are not very good. There are a couple of things you should make sure you get right with the set up:
    • weight the chain each time you install (ie new chain weight it again, they can be quite different) one as this is a key variable in the power calculation algorithm
    • measure your chain stays and put this in exactly into the set up
    • use the ETRTO rating for accuracy and remember that not all tires are the same so double check

    Something else you may want to consider is the potential need for service. Both PT and SRM need to be re-calibrated at least once every 12 months of heavy use (AIS here is Australia re-calibrates every 3 month). So you need to think about where you can get this done. If you take somewhere like Australia where there is no where that can recalibrate your PT which means either breaking up the wheel or sending it whole to the US ever 12 months. The SRM is a bit better as you can get it re-calibrated at the AIS in Canberra, but will still set you back a couple of hundred dollars and mean no riding for a while unless you have a separate chain set.
     
  8. RChung

    RChung New Member

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    Haven't looked, and haven't needed to since I got my PT a few years ago. Back then I got my PT Pro w/wheel brand new for $725. I did have to use a coupon. And my PT works on a trainer.
     
  9. BtonRider

    BtonRider New Member

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    I paid $535 for mine... with wheel ... new
     
  10. vetboy

    vetboy New Member

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    From the back of a van at the local Walmart doesn't count;)
     
  11. swampy1970

    swampy1970 Well-Known Member

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    Where from? Dare I ask?
     
  12. BtonRider

    BtonRider New Member

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    Performance.com They had them marked down 11% and I had a 10% off coupon plus they ran a 20% off special over the weekend. Since I only had to use a single coupon and everything else was from their store specials, they honored all of the specials together.

    Like I said, you just have to watch the online specials. Although, I noticed they have a mastercard that gives you points toward $20 coupons... could add up fast.
     
  13. vetboy

    vetboy New Member

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    Imagine how cheap the CS600 would be after similar discounts:D

    Joe
     
  14. lnyndhlp

    lnyndhlp New Member

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    Cheap junk is still junk
     
  15. vetboy

    vetboy New Member

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    Please tell us about your bad experience with the polar:rolleyes:

    Joe
     
  16. Digital P

    Digital P New Member

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    Don't buy Polar, the service sucks....... And you will need it (at least nine out of ten do)......
     
  17. jeff262

    jeff262 New Member

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    I had a problem with mine about 9 or 10 months ago. Polar promptly issued me an RA with no questions asked and I had a new unit back within a week of sending the old one out. My system has worked perfectly ever since. I had problems and many others have, but my experience with Polar service was good.
     
  18. swampy1970

    swampy1970 Well-Known Member

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    I had a problem with my old Polar SportsTester that I bought in England back in 1991. (Vantage XL in the US) After I moved to the US and after over a decade off the bike I decided on my first outing on the bike to put on the heart rate monitor - well the plastic had hardened to the point where the brittle strap broke! So, about 13 years after the initial purchase which was made 6000 miles away in a different continent, Polar USA said "sure, we have a couple left - what's your address.... that'll be $x for postage"

    Now that's what I call kick ass service.
     
  19. lnyndhlp

    lnyndhlp New Member

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    It sounds like people on this forum are trying to convince themselves that they've bought a good product, not withstanding evidence to the contrary.





    I’ve had two different CS600 power meters installed on my bike (by authorized dealers) and sent them both back. The first one didn’t work at all. With the second one, I saw a 5-10% difference in power readings between the CS600 and my PowerTap. Depending on the gear I was in.




    I had both set up on the same bike, because I was going to transfer my PowerTap to a new race bike. The CS600 also misses spikes so sprint powers are misreported. There’s way too much evidence out there that the CS600 is unreliable to invest so much money and time in it. There are way more reports about the problems with the CS600 than the PowerTap or SRM. If you bought the CS600 and your getting good results with it, you’re one of the minority. I’m happy for you, but most people are not going to be so lucky.
     
  20. vetboy

    vetboy New Member

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    No convincing needed - mine works great.



    Yea, I've heard those PTs can be off slightly;)


    My point in defending it is that when researching before I bought, I read lots of negative press (often by people who never used one - just rehashing what they knew about the older polar PM) and yet most who were actually riding one and took the time to post reported excellent results (as I have had). People who rant about what junk it is will scare off those cash strapped riders who really want a PM, but can't afford the others. They would really benefit from the polar and the power data it provides.

    Joe
     
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