Suunto M5 Review – Simple And Effective With Heart Rate Monitor


Heart Rate Functions


Fitness / Sport Features


Ease of Use


Battery Life


Where To Get It

A Deep Dive Into The Suunto M5

Suunto M5 Fitness monitor reviewed and tested by Tristan Haskins. An attractive, well made HRM for those looking for 3 x HR zone training with a comfortable chest strap HR transmitter.

The Suunto M5 can be paired with optional GPS pod for speed and distance when biking or running.

NOTE > heart rate monitors have really moved on since 2012 with regard to lithium ion batteries, Bluetooth connected smartphone apps, wrist based heart rate and built-in GPS etc.

If you want a self contained heart rate monitor watch that does NOT connect to your smartphone and runs on a regular CR2032 coin-cell battery … the Suunto M5 is still a competent sports focused heart rate monitor, however, how long it will be supported I do not know …. (comment Jan 2017)

>>Not your thing? Check out our list of outdoor adventure watches here<<

  • Who Is It For?

  • Video Review

Should you buy one now?

No … sorry Suunto, but I would have to recommend something like the Polar M200 or Garmin Forerunner 35 for runners looking for built-in GPS plus convenient wrist based heart rate.

For more serious exercisers / runners I’d recommend the Garmin Forerunner 230 or Polar M400 with chest strap HRM and built-in GPS. All of these watches are supported by brilliant smartphone apps and websites.

Garmin Forerunner 35 user friendly, competent GPS running watch with wrist based HR

Polar M200 a more basic GPS running watch with wrist based HR & activity tracker

Polar M400 a more technical GPS running watch with chest strap HR, activity tracker & 5 x HR zones

Garmin Forerunner 230 another technical GPS running watch (VO2 etc) with chest strap HR

Key Features

  • Real time heart rate monitoring
  • Automatically switches between 3 x heart rate zones to help reach personal targets
  • (Note – 3 x target zones are AUTO set – user cannot define their own zones)
  • Calories burnt – based on exercising heart rate
  • Time of day
  • Date
  • Daily alarm
  • Both units with SELF CHANGE batteries
  • Fitness Test (not found on the M2) – put the Suunto M5 in Fitness Test mode – walk for approx 10 – 30 minutes and the Suunto M5 will tell you how FIT it thinks you are – and hopefully show some improvement since last test.
  • 3 personal targets to choose from – improve fitness, weight management and free training
  • Daily exercise instruction with ideal duration and intensity
  • Automatically adapting exercise program for the next 7 days – if you miss a day, it will adapt.. if you do too much … it will adapt… if you sit on the couch all day.. IT WILL KNOW ….
  • Real time intensity guidance during workout
  • Motivational feedback messages
  • Upload exercise data with the MOVESTICK
  • Download training programs from the MOVESCOUNT website to the Suunto M5 watch (not found on M4)
  • Track speed and distance (with optional Foot POD, Suunto Bike POD and Suunto GPS POD) (not supported on Suunto M4)
  • What’s In The Suunto M5 Heart Rate Monitor Box?

  • Suunto M5 heart rate monitor watch (black and gold)
  • Suunto Dual Chest Transmitter
  • Suunto Movestick
  • Suunto M5 heart rate monitor “Quick Start Guide”

  • Top Alternatives

    Next Model UP

    Even though the Suunto M5 heart rate monitor is the top of the range, you may wish to look at the Suunto Quest heart rate monitor, where you can do laps/splits/intervals, have % of max HR, have the Recovery feature and also a more detailed PC download.

    Next Model DOWN

    suunto m2 review

    This would be the Suunto M2. It does NOT feature training load indication nor can you download training programs from the Suunto Movescount web site back to the watch. Neither does it have the ability for speed & distance measurements.

    Andrew Wyatt

    Andrew Wyatt

    Andrew Wyatt from Texas has been the best-selling author in 2014. He was the most appreciated writer in 2015. Different organizations have honored him with different awards and memberships as well. He is a tech shop owner and completed graduation in Electrical Engineering.

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