The complete analysis is already finished, so if you are interested in knowing all the details of Suunto Spartan, I recommend you to read the complete review by clicking here.
Presented today to the public, Suunto Spartan Ultra is the new flagship of the Finns. It comes to the market with a clear objective, to attack a Garmin Fenix 3 that has been at the top of the adventure and multisport watches for just over a year. Suunto had to make a strong bet to stand up to Garmin, not only in terms of aesthetics, but also in terms of performance and technology. Or at least that's the conclusion we can reach by looking at the images we've been shown.
Not that the Ambit3 series would have been outdated, as it was and still is a very capable watch in most respects, but when it came to considering other features such as a more traditional aesthetic or usability as a smartwatch; the Ambit3s were clearly behind.
Suunto has been doing his homework, and this is the result of years of work.
Suunto Spartan Ultra Specifications
Although it was made official today, we still know little or nothing about the performance of the Suunto Spartan Ultra. What is certain is that aesthetically, the new Spartan Ultra no longer looks like a Suunto. With the screws removed from the bezel of the watch (which gave it a much more robust look, but perhaps too "ruggedized" to wear with a suit), now what presides over the imposing front is the touchscreen. That's right, the new Spartan Ultra has a touchscreen, as if it were a smartwatch.
But that does not mean that the buttons are lost, although they have been reduced in number. Now there are only three that we find on the right side, going from the five buttons that we had before. They are still maintained as they continue to be essential in multisport and swimming activities.
These are the specifications that are known so far, based on the press release and the information that has been leaking for days
- High-definition color display optimized for outdoor use
- Touch control
- Three buttons located on the right side of the watch
- Sapphire glass
- Stainless steel or titanium bezel, depending on the model
- Autonomy of 20h for 1s GPS, and up to 200h for extended GPS recording
- Daily Activity Monitor
- Barometric altimeter
- Magnetic compass
- Route navigation
- Various sports modes (interval, run, long or indoor)
- GPS antenna integrated into the watch bezel (therefore no antenna on the strap)
- Vibration warning
- FusedSPeed and FusedAlti, similar to what was offered in the Ambit3
- Records for specific distances
- Submersible to 100m
- Bluetooth connectivity (and no, no ANT+)
At the moment it's what we know, there's no more.
What are the most important developments?
The most important new feature is the screen, both because it is in colour and because it uses touch technology. Until now, Suunto has used black and white screens in the Ambit range, which only allowed the background to be changed to black with white text or vice versa. With the Spartan Ultra, Suunto has followed the trend started by Garmin and brings a full colour screen to its multisport watch.
Is it better? Well, it depends. The final verdict can only be given after seeing the watch physically, because at the moment the only thing we have are rendered images in which everything always looks very nice, but is not real. Details such as brightness, contrast, lighting...
There will be mixed feelings, because no matter how good the screen is, it will not be able to match the easy reading of a monochrome screen. But on the other hand, the amount of information that the new screen will be able to represent (both by colors used and by definition) is far from what we are used to see in Suunto.
Another important new feature is that Suunto seems to be losing, for good, the antenna on the belt. First it was the Traverse, then the Vertical and now the Spartan Ultra confirm the trend. Only tests will confirm if the new model is able to reach the accuracy of the Ambit3 with independent antenna, which have always been very well appreciated for their ability to receive GPS signal when conditions were more unfavorable (forests, mountains, cloudy days, etc.).
Now the screen allows you to display more information, going from the three fields we had before to four and distributing it in a varied way on the screen.
Movescount is also renewed
The Spartan Ultra is not the only thing announced today. Movescount also gets a facelift and new features. In fact right now in maintenance and it is not possible to access the web to check your training data.
But I'll save that for a separate entry where we can talk more calmly about their news.
When can I expect more information?
It's a strange release. The clock becomes official today, but nothing or almost nothing we know yet. Yes, we have images and we can know the basic details of control and display. But we know nothing about the software possibilities, beyond knowing that, now, it has activity monitor.
Suunto promises to give us more details within a month, so you'll have to keep an eye out for all the new features we're going to find in the new top-of-the-line Finns.
Suunto Spartan Ultra, availability and pricing
The Suunto Spartan Ultra will be on sale soon, throughout the summer. It is expected to go on sale on August 1st. But it won't be cheap, because Suunto's range stops have never been cheap. There will be two versions, depending on the material of the bezel. The only difference is slightly the weight and the color of the bezel.
- Suunto Spartan Ultra steel: $649 ($699 with pulse sensor)
- Suunto Spartan Ultra Titanium: £749 (£799 with pulse sensor)
A lot? Probably, especially compared to the Ambit3 Peak which can be obtained for more than half its priceBut I can tell you little more about it without having more information about the watch, without knowing what new features it has in the software section and especially without being able to check if the GPS signal reception is up to their models with an antenna on the strap. So, if you are interested in the new Spartan Ultra, the best thing you can do is keep an eye on the page because there will be more information as soon as Suunto tells us more news.
And with that... thanks for reading!
For those who need more information, the quick user guide is also available: