Polar Vantage V2 – other impressions

Since last week I decided to follow the Polar half marathon running plan, I’m using exclusively the Polar Vantage V2, with all it has to offer. I noticed that at least for Vantage V2, starting with 2.0.6 firmware (I don’t know if that was also available in the 1.x firmware) there is the possibility to skip the phase of one structured workout – one of the missing features I noticed when compared with Garmin.

If you press the start (red) button
You’ll have the option to skip phase or end guidance

One annoyance is the implementation of the sensor detection – basically, if the sensor (in my case the Stryd) is in range, the watch will try to connect, no matter what sport profile you’re using and that’s just lame…I mean, it doesn’t have to waste battery to connect with every sensor you know regardless of it’s usage in the current context. For that, Polar should offer the possibility to customise the sport profiles and select only some sensors active.

For example, I won’t use my Stryd when I’m walking the dog, but since I start the session in front of my house, for the first meters I’ll have the Stryd connected and sending the pace/distance (zero) to the watch. The same applies for a Strength session indoor, getting Stryd connected doesn’t make any sense. Luckily that doesn’t happen with the Tacx, that’s only triggered for the indoor cycling.

The supportive sessions included in the plan are nice and valuable, but I would appreciate them to be sent similar to FitSpark sessions to the watch – like structured workouts, instead of me just watching the video or trying to execute from memory the phases of the workout.

Otherwise, the watch is nice to wear, light and comfortable. The journey continues…

Stay safe and run happy!

Author: Liviu Nastasa

Passionate about software development, sociology, running...definitely a geek.

7 thoughts

    1. Yes, you’re right, but until the recent firmware version for Vantage V2, I didn’t see this option being available for Polar Vantage. I remember that I actually tried that with the Vantage and concluded that Polar is more “rigid” in its approach for following the structured workouts.

  1. 👏
    Good info.
    I’m currently trying to decide whether to upgrade to the Garmin 945 or the Polar Vantage V2. Do you wear the vantage 24/7? How have you found the sleep analysis? Would you recommend it over the 945?

    1. Hi Allan, I’m wearing the Vantage V2 all the time, I’m happy with the sleep analysis, it’s in line with what I feel and also gives you some more data. I didn’t have any issues with detecting the awake/asleep moments. One thing to be noted is the fact that Polar doesn’t allow (anymore) to adjust manually the sleep period, so if it doesn’t detect the right interval – you can’t change it manually. Garmin 945 still uses the cloud-based sleep analysis and not the device based analysis (FirstBeat) that Fenix 6 line uses and that doesn’t make it very accurate, but also not completely rubbish (at least, I didn’t complain). The new sleep algorithm on Fenix 6 is very good and on-par with Polar, even though it won’t give you exactly the same values. So, if sleep and recovery is your thing, unless Garmin will push the updates from Fenix 6 to 945 (I don’t see why not, but they slowed down the new feature releases for 945 in the recent months), the Vantage V2 is a better device. The Garmin 945 is still a better device in other areas – it has maps, (music, payment if those count), a more connected environment – Garmin Connect is better integrated with Training Peaks, Final Surge. Feature wise, 945 is the better watch. From the looks, it’s subjective, but I like very much the look of Vantage V2, it’s more “premium”. You may find this comparison here still relevant https://liviunastasa.com/2020/04/10/garmin-fr-945-vs-polar-vantage-v/. The Vantage V2 is better than Vantage V in several areas, but the comparison is still useful. For sleep analysis, here you’ll find my impressions about Fenix 6 and Vantage – https://liviunastasa.com/2020/06/01/garmin-sleep-analysis-discovery-journey/.

    2. If you like the Garmin environment and features, 945 is a solid device and a good purchase. There are rumours that 955 will be soon out (maybe that’s why we don’t see that many new features released to 945). Fenix 6 might be an option (it’s a more expensive watch) because it gives you access to the latest developments from Garmin (a lot of new features, including sleep analysis were released in the recent year on this line, whereas 945 didn’t yet get all the goodies).

      If you like the Polar environment and approach, you’ll be very happy with Vantage V2.

      I bet you can find a better price for 945 these days and that makes it a better deal than Vantage V2 which is not yet that often discounted.

  2. Hi Liviu,

    Pleasure to read your initial look at the Polar Vantage V2.

    How would you compare the display to the Forerunners? The V2 looks like the interface is much easier on the eyes to read stats at a glance. For me, that would be a point of consideration; it’s just a shame they don’t make the screen larger with the large size of the watch, because I understand it has the same size screen as the Forerunners.


    1. The screen size and resolution is the same (at least compared with 945) and both 945 and Vantage V2 have large “unused” bezels. This was improved with 745 which looks more compact with smaller bezels. In terms or “raw power” Garmin is superior – I mean the brightness of the screen is customizable and at 100% they are brighter than Vantage V2 at full brightness. On the other hand, in real life use, I was very happy with Vantage V2 light – I didn’t feel the urge to press the light button as with Vantage V – the screen contrast and backlight was just fine, because of the light sensor. To be honest, in terms of real-life usage, I prefer the VV2 screen to 945 – but the gesture based backlight for VV2 comes with battery impact which is not negligible.

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