I own several Suunto watches; but this S6 has been…
Price Paid: $200
I own several Suunto watches; but this S6 has been quite a disappointment. It appears that my experiences mimic those of many other users. As Suunto brings out new generations of watches (wrist-top computers), the quality and customer satisfaction drops. What I call the first generation (Vector/Altimax, Yachtsman/Mariner, Observer, X-lander - and for diving the Stinger/Mosquito), have proven themselves tough, reliable and accurate for many thousands of outdoor enthusiasts.
Next came the second generation: the X, S, M line of watches. More features, less reliability. Now comes the new 'Core' line. Word on the streets on these is that they're crap (apparently a stunningly high rate of product repairs and returns).
The S6 is a ski/snowboard-specific model that I thought would replace my old Altimax. But the S6 just sits at home and collects dust. And the Altimax keeps on performing flawlessly.
The S6 is a bit smaller than the Altimax, which is nice; but it has a completely new UI design that I feel was a step backwards. The face is less readable. The battery life sucks. In fact, that would be my biggest complaint. This thing goes through batteries like you wouldn't believe. With a fresh battery, while it is working, it's ok, but offers no significant feature advantages over the Altimax/Vector/XLander. But since it's always out of battery life, it can't really even compete. You gotta be in the game before you can think about winning.
One of the main features that Suunto seemed to be pushing with their newer generations is the concept of collecting the data from a trip (or day skiing) then uploading it to your computer and then to the Web (suuntosports.com). Kind of an interesting idea - but isn't it just a bit too 'poser' to be so into your vertical footage and comparing it with other peoples'?
If you're looking for the best ski-specific watch, track down an Altimax or and S-Lander. You can get good deals on these now. If you want a bit more functionality (compass), look into a Vector or X-Lander. If you want similar functionality in an even better looking and more robust package, check out the Observer. You can't go wrong with any of these watches. My advice would be to walk away from the S6, X6 series.
Here's what other sites are saying:
Free Shipping. Suunto S6 Watch (Fall 2007) Suunto S6 has been especially designed with downhill skiers and snowboarders in mind. Measuring and analyzing the surrounding environment minimizes the risk involved in moving around the mountains, whether on or off piste. Information on your skiing or snowboarding performance, on the other hand, provides you with knowledge necessary to improve your riding. In addition to having information available to you at all times on the slopes, the Suunto S6 records and stores data for later analysis. You can view, compare, and analyze your riding performance through a specially designed PC interface. The technical features of the wristop computer, combined with the PC interface developed for more graphical representation of your performance, and our Internet Community, where you can share information with other like-minded skiers and snowboarders from around the world, make Suunto S6 the device of choice for every true rider and snow sport enthusiast. Features Altimeter: Altitude, vertical speed, altitude alarm, asc/dsc alarm, online cumulative descent and number of runs, altitude profile, memory capacity for different recording intervals, interval reminder, alti/baro lock Barometer: Sea level pressure, absolute pressure, weather trend graph, temperature, 48-hour memory, weather alarm, alti/barolock Compass: Bearing, graphic compass rose, bearing tracking Ski chronograph: Degree of slope, maximum speed, average speed and vertical drop for individual runs Watch: Calendar, 3 alarms with date option, dual time, chrono with unlimited split/lap times PC interface software + cable Water resistant to 30 m (100 ft) Full access to SuuntoSports.com
Suunto made the S6 Watch to give skiers and snowboarders extremely accurate altitude information for their day on the slopes. In addition to tracking real-time altitude and ascent/descent rate, it allows you to chart and visualize your day by plugging it to your computer with the included PC interface. Of course, it also has the features you expect from Suunto barometer, compass, chronograph, and descent log.
- Backcountry Outlet
Suunto S6 has been especially designed with downhill skiers and snowboarders in mind. Features altimeter (altitude, # runs, vertical speed), barometer, compass, ski chronograph, time, calendar, alarm, chrono, and PC interfact + software to analyze performance. Water resistant to 100ft.
- Teton Village Sports
Description of Suunto S6 WatchSuunto S6 is a new wristop computer especially designed for alpine skiing and snowboarding. It offers a unique combination of three functional dimensions: it gives the user essential information instantly when riding on and off pistes. A level of deeper understanding comes with the PC interface. It also opens a door to an Internet community where skiers and snowboarders worldwide can share and acquire information with and from other users of Suunto´s latest wristop computer generation. Features:Measure and store your maximum speed and avarage speed of a run. Altimeter Barometer Compass Watch Skichrono and PC interface.
- US Outdoor Store