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Wireless tunes meet multi-sport tracking.
Designed to wirelessly stream music to Bluetooth earbuds as you run, bike, hike, swim, or even train indoors, the TomTom Spark Music Plus Cardio GPS Watch is a multi-sport/activity tracker watch with 3GB (approximately 500 songs) of built-in storage for loading all your favorite workout tunes. This watch is compatible with both MP3 and AAC (what iTunes uses) files, meaning it'll load music from both Windows Media Player and iTunes, as well as many other popular music libraries on both Mac and PC. Its Bluetooth Smart sensor wirelessly streams music to Bluetooth-equipped earbuds with A2DP and AVRC profiles. Check your earbuds' specifications to ensure compatibility (Bluetooth earbuds sold separately).
The black and white LED screen offers an easy-to-read display in both bright outdoor environments and indoor gyms with dim lighting. An intuitive left/right button interface effortlessly toggles through the watch's different displays and workout screen menus. Its built-in heart rate monitor, GPS tracking, and motion sensor records heart rate, speed, pace, distance, calories burned, and workout duration when you're cycling on twisty roads, running along your favorite trails, cardio training indoors on a treadmill or stationary bike, as well as swimming laps in the pool (it's rated at 5-ATM water-resistance).
Besides monitoring important exercise statistics while you work out, this watch acts as a 24/7 activity tracker that monitors your steps taken every day, active minutes, calories burned, and sleep schedule. It also functions as a training watch for pushing your limits, offering Race, Goals, Zone, Laps, and Interval modes for competitive use. Additionally, it comes bundled with a USB charging/data transfer cable and user guide. Please note that it comes in two strap sizes, with the recommended wrist size for each respective strap noted in the dimensions specs on the left side of the product display page.
- Black & white LED display
- 3GB of music storage (plays MP3 and AAC files)
- Connects with Bluetooth earbuds (A2DP and AVRC profiles)
- Built-in heart rate monitor, GPS tracking, and motion sensor
- Multisport mode: running, treadmill, cycling, indoor cycling, swimming, gym
- 24/7 activity tracking: steps, active minutes, calories burned, sleep
- Training modes: Race, Goals, Zone, Laps, Intervals
- Compatible with TomTom MySports App (via iTunes and Google Play stores)
- Includes USB charging cable, user guide
- 5-ATM water-resistance (40-meters/130-feet)
- Item #TMT000K
- Q & A
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
- Fit: True to size
- Size Bought: Large
This thing is so sweet. I've had some more serious Garmin watches and less serious Fitbits, but this is a great compromise between the two. It is capable enough to record my mountain bike rides and other activities, but much more compact, user friendly, and wearable on a daily basis than the bigger more fully featured watches. It is just small and sleek enough that I can wear it every day as my time piece, which was important to me.
The huge thing that made purchasing this watch a no-brainer was the music functionality. That said, it's still not perfect. The music feature works exactly as described, it's easy to load up music and to play it while you're on the trail. The freedom this gives you to run, bike, etc. without a cell phone flopping around in your pocket is pretty huge. However, you have to actually download the music in order to load it up you can't just pull from your spotify/apple music playlists. This is more annoying than I expected, turns out I don't actually own much music in 2016. While I consider this a pretty big problem, it is still the only watch of its kind to allow any kind of music function at all so it gets a pass! I'm definitely looking forward to the future when I can just hit play on my streaming accounts.
Other huge advantage over the fitbit lineup is that it is waterproof, and the heart rate monitor doesn't have that obnoxious green flashing light.
Overall this watch has been super easy to set up and use, and the features you get for the price can't be beat. If these are the features you're looking for, I would highly recommend it.
My first fitness watch...
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
- Fit: True to size
- Size Bought: Small
So this is my first fitness watch. I've had a Polar heart rate monitor watch with chest strap but not an all in one like this. So far I've only used it for running. I intend to eventually use on the bike as well. It took a little getting used to the features and how to use it, but I like it now. It's nice having the music on-board in the event you don't want to take your phone or iPod. One downside as far as the music goes is that you cannot skip songs from the watch unit not from the head phones. I have Beats wireless headphones, and you can't skip songs with those, although the TomTom branded headphones apparently you can. Another limitation I have noticed is that the battery seems to have very short life between charges. As far as heart rate, I feel it is reliable and pretty accurate. It has all the other data I want - like calories, avg pace, current pace, distance, etc. I have small wrists, which is why I ordered the size small. It's just right but could not be a touch smaller or I would size up.
311 has grassroots, yall...
311 has grass roots, cmon!
(Obscure jamz reference...)
I took the Spark Music Plus Cardio GPS out on a trail run through Marin Headlanads in the Bay Area today. I'm loving the simplicity of this thing. It's really a "fire-and-forget" type of device, and while I won't use it in the same way that I use my Suunto Ambit 3 Peak (loading in tracks I drew on GoogleEarth, following those tracks in the mountains, comparing lat/longs from topos, tracking my ascent rates, etc...) I WILL use it extensively for training loops around town . The speed with which it grabs satellites is impressive when those satellite's positions are updated with the phone app everytime you sync it. I love the fact that I can load in tunes, but I still haven't figured out a way to CONTROL the tunes once I'm in an activity profile. (I can't seem to change songs, repeat songs, etc...)
I know it's not too fair to compare battery times to the Suunto Ambit 3, which, as I've testified to in other reviews, is just downright incredible enough to actually be useful for 36 hour pushes in the mountains, but the battery in the Spark Music Plus Cardio GPS leaves a little to be desired. It's not as bad as what I've read online that some people are complaining about...I guess people just like to complain. In my experience, once I charge it, it'll track my daily activities for about a week if i'm not grabbing satellites. When I'm using it to run daily I need to recharge it every three days or so, but i'm using the MP3 player the whole time I'm running. I find the battery life to be totally acceptable for what this watch is doing.
More later as I keep using it.
Turns out dogs take lots of steps...
I threw the TomTom Spark Music Plus Cardio GPS on our dog just...because. I think counted steps are measured by your Height and the fact that you're not a quadruped. Her GPS track is hilarious...
Here's a size comparison between the TomTom Spark Music + Cardio GPS, the Garmin Fenix2 and the Suunto Ambit3 Peak. The Spark is very thin and low-profile compared to the other two. Overall, it feels small and compact.
The Light Is Really Easy To Turn On...
Oh yeah. This is actually really cool. To turn the light on, you just cover the face with your palm for a second. Then it lights up and looks like this. I've found that to be super handy (pardon the horrible pun) while sleeping. Or...actually, while being awake, trying to sleep.
Sea to summit!
I shot this photo of the Tom Tom Spark Music GPS watch about 18 hours before shooting the one I just posted in my review. Why 18 hours? I had to sleep. Don't judge.
(I love California.)
Had I been thinking a little harder, i would have taken 64 more steps. Then it would have been the number in feet that i've seen on all my other various gadgetry more times than i can remember while standing on top of my favorite local crag. Because...I like that kind of stuff.
But, I was busy not thinking a littler harder.
I WAS AT THE BEACH, MAN!
Oh and also this turned out to be a nude beach and there was a dude to my left gettin a little...less burdened by woven textiles. It's hard to keep undesirable subjects out of fisheye frames...
Simple Is Sometimes Advantageous...
First of all, I'd like to thank Backcountry and TomTom for allowing me to test around with the Spark Music GPS watch. I'll post a bunch of photos and hopefully some useful reviews and comments about it as I become more familiar with it.
First, a little perspective; I'm coming from a Suunto background, (Vector, T6c, T6d, CORE, Ambit3 Peak). I also have a Garmin Fenix 2. I'm a climber first and foremost. I love to run, but I run to train to climb, i don't run to train to run, with the occasional half-ultra while pacing my wife. All of the watches listed above have so many features that a common complaint I hear is that they are TOO complicated. I'm a total nerd, as will become evident pretty quickly if you scroll through my other reviews. The more buttons and charts and knobs and dials I can tweak and turn the happier I am. When I first tried out the TomTom Spark Music GPS I was little concerned with the lack of some features I was used to. A few of the initial questions I asked silently to myself (maybe I yelled them out loud...I was rocking out to the MP3s I'd previously loaded onto it...) were:
Where's my lat/long coords? Where's my track breadcrumb trail? I can't see my elevation? Where's my meters/sec ascent speed? Why can't I drop a WP here real fast to remind me later on GE that this was a great spot to shoot a 360x180 18EV HDRi equirectangular (uhhhmm...).
And some others.
After a few days out with the watch I started to realize that it's not meant to service all those needs. The beauty of this watch is that it's fast and easy to use. I throw it on, hit "Up" once and "Right" three times and just go. (Up once starts the MP3 player, Right one time chooses the "Run" profile, Right twice accepts the "Run" profile, Right a third time starts the activity tracking after it finds a GPS fix...)
There's no need to use an HR belt. The watch shoots a laser through your skin in the exact same way that a pulse oximeter measures both HR and haemoglobin oxygen saturation (getting back into nerd territory).
Trust me. It doesn't hurt.
Speaking of that, I plan on running the exact same route with both the TomTom and the Suunto Ambit3 Peak and comparing my HR values.
Anyway, it's very easy to use. It's controlled by a little 4-way rocker below the face (i think that's where the GPS receiver is housed as well.) Getting around the various feature screens is really simple and intuitive once you get used to the rocker.
Once of my favorite screens is the one that appears in the photo I'll add to this review. It's basically a percentage chart that tells you how long you've spent in each HR zone. This is crucial info, as any serious athlete will know. I design my training sessions around HR zones because it's physiological shorthand for a much more complicated underpinning of concepts. What the little chart in this photo is telling me is that i've had a horrible training session. (To be fair, I wasn't training, I was just hanging out in ze mountainz...it was a great way to spend super bowl sunday.) The goal is to get a large percentage value in your target zone for your day's training plan. Most of the time, that zone is either One or Three. Two is to be avoided at all cost, (usually...) Four and Five are reserved for specific sessions in which you are stressing your anaerobic metabolic systems. I was bouncing all over the place here. (Which is exactly why I run to train for climbing).
While not readily obvious in this screen, the zones are clearly labeled in the previous screen, and when you slide over to this one, it's not confusing at all.
I'd like to be able rename the zones, though.
To see all your workouts, you need an account on TomTom's MySports web page. There's also an app for your phone. I've used both and I really like them. Very clean UIs and very streamlined displays of data. More on that in a later review.
The character counter says i'm out of
Just kidding. But seriously it says 9 now...
TomTom Spark Music
A great start, finally 1 device for all
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
- Fit: True to size
- Size Bought: Large
Going on just about 2 weeks now with the TomTom Spark Music + Cardio and so far it has been a great experience, albeit with some issues that you can expect from any new product, but I hope that future updates will address them.
The Spark is surprisingly small, it is much smaller than many competitor and previous models, especially in the depth, and especially considering that this has a built-in optical HR monitor. The reason that they moved away from the partnership with Mio for this sensor is because of exactly this issue- they wanted the watch to have a lower profile and could not accomplish it with the Mio sensor. So far it has paid off.
The biggest feature of this watch by far is the music.
+ Music syncs easily using a Macbook
+ Playback is simple, and possible without being in an activity
+ Pairing with headphones is very easy, but may require re-pairing at times, however it is very easy to do
- The biggest gripe that I have is that when in any activity there is no way to change the music tracks using the watch. You can pause the workout and change the playlist that you are listening to, but you cannot skip forward or backward on tracks. In the future this could be easily remedied by adding a screen when pressing up or down in an activity, that shows the current track, and then left and right buttons would skip tracks. Otherwise you just have to use your headphones/speaker to skip tracks.
+ picks up heart rate very easily
+ very accurate while running (and doing leg workouts)- used a Scosche Rhythm + to compare HR
- when doing any type of upper body lifting the HR monitor is not that accurate (especially when doing exercises that involve forearms). it will not pick up the increases in HR quickly (used a Scosche Rhythm + to compare this)
+ picks up signal extremely quickly
+ maintains signal easily
+ customizable metrics- you can choose what to display in the lower left and right of the screen no matter what the main screen is on- depending on each activity
+ so many metrics to pick from for display
+ Running offers a number of options, including intervals, which use vibration alerts, that I LOVE, especially when it is cold out and you might not be able to see the watch face- and the interval workout includes a customizable warm-up and warm-down period
+ Alarm is great for silent wake-up, but would be nice to be able to set with the phone
+ love the backlit screen (actually didn't know how to activate it until reading the forums- just cover the whole screen with your hand and release)
+ battery life so far is great
- step count is not that accurate (in my opinion) but this could be fixed with future updates
- lack of color screen is not a big deal, but would have been nice
- no phone notifications: this I actually am not sure about- I love the idea of notifications, but at the same time I like to be disconnected from my phone and not know every time someone calls or messages me
- ANT+ not sure if a future update can fix this, but would be nice to be able to pair other sensors with the watch- such as my Scosche Rhythm + for days like arm day so that I can get an accurate HR reading throughout the workout
I love this watch. I can finally exercise and have my music with me, without needing to carry my phone, or two devices. The build quality is good, it could fit a bit better into the watch band, but it is also nice that I will easily be able to swap band colors. At this price point, you absolutely cannot beat this!
Silly question.. but do you have to have bluetooth headphones to pair it with to hear the music, or does it just play it out loud for all to hear? I want to get this for my husband but he hates wearing headphones.
It needs headphones to pair with, it doesn't have built-in speakers.
large or small... how do i know which size is for me?
I went large, liked the look better. There's a ton of adjustability in the strap and you the excess doesn't flap thanks to the attachment.
Do you have in stock TomTom Spark Music Plus Cardio GPS with large strap? Thank you
Large is currently in stock.