Recently got my Polar ft40. Love it. And yeah, for sure a good investment.
Like Dani, this is my first (and hopefully only for a good long while) HRM, so I guess you should take my views with a grain of salt.
Still, I think I really made a good investment, even if it was on the pricer side. Also, I didn't want to realize a few months down the road that I need a new HRM because mine is lacking, so I figured paying more once is better than saving a few bucks but ending up buying 3.
Looking back on things, I could have probably gotten the ft7 or ft4 and saved some money... but I wanted the fit test (which I have *yet* to use -___-; ) and the white watch really caught my fancy.
When I started looking (beyond reading through comments on SP and asking Q's here), the few people I knew in school with HRMs all insisted its worth the money to get the brand (and they all had Polars, so yeah~).
The chest strap is soft and comfortable (some kind of stretchy fabric vs the full-plastic ones I've seen), and the H1 receiver is nice and small (the only time I notice I have it is during yoga). It also syncs with most of the gym equipment (something I didn't count on since the gym has some pretty old stuff in it), though I don't think that's a Polar-specific thing. The training files don't overload me with info, just the stuff I need; time, calories burned, max and avg heart rate plus what % of the time i was in cardio vs fat burn. That last one isn't that important to me, but nice to have.
It does everything I want it to, and the fact that I can change the battery myself was a big plus (I read a review where someone didn't realize she had to ship hers back to get the battery changed... so I tripple checked before buying). No GPS, but I do all my stuff at the gym, so I didn't care about that. Its also water resistant, so I'm looking forward to seeing just how much Jet skiing will take out of me ^_^
And there's really no point getting the flowlink thing that lest you sync the files onto your comp.
edit: should have said this in the first place; I got mine off Amazon, and whatever brand you end up choosing, I'd suggest getting it from there. The ones in-store are usually priced far higher than online, and the reviews are helpful (though just like reviews on here, they should be taken with a grain of salt).
Edited by: ALORTA at: 4/4/2013 (17:06)