Differences of the Garmin chest strapsHowever, there are important differences, which are also responsible for the quite large price difference.
Weight, dimensions and belt lengthIn the basic version the HRM-Run and HRM-Tri are identical. Both have a module weight of 49 grams and dimensions of 29.4 x 51.4 x 8.5 mm. This makes the two very compact.
The belt of both can be freely adjusted between 60 and 142 cm.
The Garmin HRM-Dual stands out a bit here. The chest strap is a bit heavier and a bit more bulky. The module weighs 54.4 grams and measures 62 x 34 x 11 mm.
With the HRM-Dual the belt can also be adjusted freely. But only within the range of 63.5 to 132 cm.
Thus the HRM-Dual does not perform as well in comparison. This is also the case with the functions, as you will see in the course of the test.
Connectivity - Bluetooth and ANT+Connectivity is a very relevant point for the use of chest straps. This does not only apply to Garmin models.
Bluetooth is not the standard here. Only the HRM-Dual* offers you the possibility to use the chest strap via Bluetooth. The other two, HRM-Run* and HRM-Tri*, can only be connected via ANT+.
If you want to connect your chest strap as with your smartphone or generally via Bluetooth, you have to use the Garmin HRM-Dual. This is also the cheapest model of the three. It offers only a few functions, but this is sufficient for most of them.
ANT+ has the disadvantage that not every device supports this connectivity. You should check this before buying a Garmin HRM-Tri or HRM-Run. Especially Garmin watches are of course optimized for use with the two. But not all of them either.
Swimming (Waterproof)The two more expensive ones, HRM-Run and HRM-Tri, are waterproof up to 50 meters (5ATM). The cheaper HRM-Dual is only waterproof up to 10 meters (1ATM).
However, only the Garmin HRM-Tri is suitable for use in swimming pools. For the other two, the manufacturer points out that the units are not suitable for chemicals in the swimming pool.
There are also differences in the functions. Because only the Garmin HRM-Tri is optimized for swimming. Thus, the device has a non-slip design and can collect statistics for swimming and offer them for evaluation.
If you want a chest strap for professional swimming, the HRM-Tri* is your choice. The device is generally optimized for triathlon.
RunningAs you can guess from its name, the Garmin HRM-Run is optimized for running. But the same applies to the HRM-Tri.
Through the optimizations you get statistics and evaluations of your runs. So you can analyze them and improve your running techniques.
Step frequency, step length, vertical movement and balance of the ground contact time are recorded.
But you should also make sure that you use it with a compatible device from Garmin.
If you want a chest strap for (professional) running training and do not need swimming options, the HRM-Run* is your choice.
Battery lifeBattery life is not a big issue with chest straps. All devices are powered by a battery, which can be replaced. The battery life is different for all harnesses, but extremely high.
- Garmin HRM-Dual: 42 months (3.5 years)
- Garmin HRM-Run: 12 months
- Garmin HRM-Tri: 10 months
Which Garmin HRM chest strap is the best?You can get the best Garmin chest strap with the HRM-Tri*. However, this is only usable with ANT+. However, the device offers you a great added value. You get statistics about your runs and swims. If you have a Garmin watch, then you will have a great time here. In this case, I recommend the HRM-Tri*.
If you only need the heart rate, then the HRM-Dual will do. If you want to use the chest strap via Bluetooth, then you have no other choice than to buy the HRM-Dual*. For the simple function of the heart rate also clearly sufficient.
- ANT+, more functions and added value with a Garmin watch: Garmin HRM-Tri*
- ANT+ and Bluetooth, simple chest strap: Garmin HRM-Dual*
I would not recommend the HRM-Run* because of the price-performance ratio. Here I rather recommend to buy the more expensive HRM-Tri*. You will get some nice extra features.