CooSpo H6 ANT+/Bluetooth LE HRM test

Introduction

In order to test watches I often run with multiple of them. Sometimes they use different transmission protocols (ANT+ or Bluetooth LE). It’s not always my goal to test the heart rate monitor so I’ve decided to buy 1 that supports both of the technologies simultaneously. There are many choices on the market but the price always start from about 50€ (Wahoo Tickr) to 80€ (4iiii Viiiiva). There are also the optical solutions like Scosche Rhythm+ (75€) but the battery life of 8h is not for me.

But I wanted something cheaper. Quick search on Ebay/Amazon and there it is:). CooSpo H7. Total cost with shipping was 25€. But does it really work? What are the results compared to top quality heart rate monitors like Garmin’s HRM-RUN? Let’s find out!

Unboxing

The CooSpo H6 comes in a small, rather cheap, box. The box contains:

  • The heart rate monitor itself.
  • Strap.
  • Instruction.

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What’s the build quality? Cheap – just like the box. It’s also much bigger than the HRM-RUN.

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About the monitor

The strap quality is really nice though. I’ve done many trainings with it and it’s really comfortable to use. Also what’s important – the monitor is compatible with Garmin and Polar straps (and other way around – the Garmin and Polar straps are compatible with CooSpo H7 strap).

It supposed to work for 12months for 1h daily so in theory 365 hours. I have to replace the battery already once after a month because of a issue with the ANT+ signal (described below). Afterwards it works fine already 2 months.

Tests

Ok let’s do some testing. I’ve done many runs with this strap and the Garmin HRM-RUN side by side. I’ve used the Garmin 920XT to record the data from HRM-RUN and Garmin Vivoactive to record the data from CooSpo H6.

Workout 1

HRM-RUN CooSpo H6
Average HR 172 bpm 172 bpm
Max HR 182 bpm 186 bpm
Graph workout-1-hrm-run workout-1-coospo
GC activity https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/1409066985 https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/1409058126

Workout 2

HRM-RUN CooSpo H6
Average HR 174 bpm 175 bpm
Max HR 190 bpm 190 bpm
Graph workout-2-hrm-run workout-2-coosop-h6
GC activity https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/1411700504 https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/1411664124

Workout 3

HRM-RUN CooSpo H6
Average HR  172 bpm  171 bpm
Max HR  191 bpm  192 bpm
Graph  workout-3-hrm-run  workout-3-coospo-h6
GC activity  https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/1412947495  https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/1412924247

Workout 4

HRM-RUN CooSpo H6
Average HR  164 bpm 164 bpm
Max HR  181 bpm 182 bpm
Graph  workout-4-hrm-run  workout-4-coospo-h6
GC activity  https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/1422045509 https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/1413921511

Workout 5

HRM-RUN CooSpo H6
Average HR 160 bpm 161 bpm
Max HR 184 bpm 185 bpm
Graph  workout-5-hrm-run  workout-5-coospo-h6
GC activity https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/1422045620 https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/1415737671

Test results

The results differ in max 1 bpm both on average hr and max hr. What’s noticeable, sometimes the CooSpo H6 has on the beginning a small peak in the hr (workout 2 and 3, but also in some others of my workouts). Also the graph of the CooSpo is somewhat smoothed. It appears that the hr reading frequency is higher on the HRM-RUN. But overall the results are almost identical. Beside of course the initial hr peak on the CooSpo. (btw. the same peak I’ve got on the HRM-RUN with old strap, but here it’s with brand new CooSpo strap).

Compatibility

During few months of my testings I’ve done numerous runs (testing many devices) with the H6 heart rate monitor. I’ve never got any problems with it. The devices that I’ve tested:

  • Garmin Forerunner 920XT
  • Garmin Forerunner 735XT
  • Garmin Vivoactive
  • TomTom Runner, TomTom Spark, TomTom Multi Sport
  • Polar V800, Polar M400
  • Suunto Ambit3 Peak

Most of the time I was using it also side by side with 2,3 devices (920XT, Vivoactive over ANT+ and Ambit3/TomTom over BLE). Also without any problems (all the runs from my Suunto Ambit3 Peak reviews in the GPS comparison table).

I have the Samsung Galaxy S5 Neo Android based smartphone. Those are the apps I was able to test when I can confirm the H6 works fine:

  • Endomondo (ANT+/BLE)
  • Strava (ANT+/BLE)
  • train & run (old micoach) (BLE)
  • Wahoo Fitness (ANT+/BLE)
  • Runtastic (BLE)- took about 30 seconds to connect with the HRM but worked afterwards well
  • Runkeeper (BLE)- app cannot detect the hrm

In fact I didn’t find any app where the monitor didn’t worked.

The only issue I’ve got during my few months of testing was a problem with the lack of ANT+ signal. The Bluetooth LE connection worked fine. I’ve replaced the battery and the problem was fixed. So I assume the battery was weak.

What’s also important. The HRM is compatible with Polar and Garmin straps.

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The first one is a strap for Polar H7, the second one is the CooSpo H6 strap and the last one is Garmin Soft Strap. All compatible (the Polar H7 with a small trick described in other post in near future).

Summary

Besides the poor build quality and bulky size, I think the CooSpo H6 dual band heart rate monitor is a very good piece of equipment. It doesn’t matter if you want to use it with Endomongo, Runtastic, Runkeeper or with Polar, TomTom, Garmin watch. If your device supports Bluetooth LE or ANT+ it just works! And it’s cheap:).

If you don’t need the running dynamics (top Garmin watches) or underwater heart rate transmission (Polar V800), this heart rate monitor will be a very solid choice. Especially for newbies that can use it first with the smartphone running app (both on Android from version 4.3 and iPhone 4s and above) and in the future in literally every ANT+ (Garmin, Suunto Ambit 1&2) or Bluetooth Smart (Polar V800, M400, TomTom watches, Suunto Ambit3) based watch.

I will continue to use this monitor for all Bluetooth Based watches that I will test. If something bad will happen I will certainly update the review.

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