- Published on Amazon.com
I had been afraid that the PHRM26 was going to be HUGE, like it looks in the pictures, but in actuality it is really quite reasonable in size. What seems like a 4"x3" face is more like 1¼"x1". Part of what makes it look so large is the black bump in the at the top of the watch. That bump is NOT mirrored on the bottom, and is actually INSIDE the band. What is inside the bump is a naked USB connector for plugging the watch into your computer. The connector fits into a little notch in the wristband to protect it, and the bump as actually much larger than it need be.
I had purchased the PHRM26 for it's ability to measure my heart rate. The instructions are a bit hard to follow, and there is no mention of how to activate the Heart Rate Monitor belt. APPARENTLY, you just put it on, and it works. No need to turn the belt off and on. (Makes no sense to me, the battery would last longer.)
I had a heck of a time getting the heart rate monitor to work because I was taking my cell phone with me, and it was interfering with the signal from the band. I didn't like the idea of having to leave it behind, but once I realized the problem, I used a Cell Phone Arm Band on my right arm, and kept the watch on the left arm, with my body between the two. After that it seemed to work perfectly.
Pyle Audio is a German company, and the manual is pretty poor translation into English, one that I doubt was done by a fluent English speaker. In fact, one of the most important parts of the manual was written by hand, is really in the wrong place in the manual, and gives a very slip-shod impression. Especially when you realize that the list price is well over $100! They could spend a little money and fix their manual.
Calling the included program disappointing would be an understatement of huge proportions, and is the reason why I don't give the PHRM26 a 5 star review. Oddly, it REQUIRES both a username AND password to use. In some ways this is neat, as multiple usernames allow people to SHARE the watch, as long as they exercise at different times. But the PASSWORDs can cause problems if, like me, you forget the password you used. I actually had to abandon my first username because I forgot it's password. Leaving me with an account I can neither use, nor delete. Once you get into the program itself, it's rather difficult to really make a lot of sense out of what it shows you, though it DOES allow you to both EXPORT and IMPORT CSV files that you can use in a spreadsheet program, which is nice. That allows you to keep your own records and manipulate the data in any way you see fit.
One pretty major drawback, is that the PHRM26 can only hold data for your most-recent exercise. Meaning if you forget to upload the data from the watch, the next time you exercise you will either delete the data from the previous exercise, OR you will ADD your current exercises to your last exercises, so when you finally upload the data, the current day will show the data for both days. So basically you need to upload your data every day.
The Pyle Audio (the manufacturer) website lists the PHRM26 at like $135 or something close. IMHO that is FAR above it's value. I see them regularly going for $45 - $75 in different places including Amazon, and IMHO that is STILL more than what it is worth. I was fortunate to find this one being sold by Amazon Warehouse Deals as an open package for about $25, and I feel that I paid just about the right amount for what I got. Now, the fact is that I'm a cheapskate, and I'm sure that there are many others who feel that it's worth much more, but the fact is that comparing the software that comes with the watch with the free exercise website LoseIt.com, and it's free Android app, the PHRM26 comes out very far on the low side of that comparison.