Vector Outdoor Watch


Editor: Randy

Basic Description:

A modern “super watch” for outdoor enthusiasts!

The Facts:

The SUUNTO Vector is a great watch for extreme use in the outdoors as well as for mountaineering. This watch was designed for hard core performance with an altimeter, barometer, and electronic compass as well as other multiple features.


I purchased my Vector early last year and found that it has exceeded my expectations for high performance. As a wild sheep guide I spend much of my time out in the field and demand that my gear will hold up in the most difficult terrain and weather conditions! Besides the normal features that are important to me on a watch that include timekeeping, date, chronograph, time alarm functions, and water resistance this watch has much, much more to offer!


The chronograph/watch function displays the time in a bold digital/analog manner. For someone like me who has 20/10 vision but needs reading glasses for the “up close stuff” the Vector screen is very easy to read. Not only is there a digital read-out of the time, but I found that there was also a ring around the display that fills in as the seconds go by, looking similar to an analog clock.  I found this to be “really cool.” You can also “illuminate” the screen at night with a backlight. The chronograph has multiple timers with alarms, a countdown timer, and a stopwatch that will do lap split times if you wanted to use the watch for training purposes while out running, jogging or cycling. Although I’m not as good as the “young generation” with the latest technology I found that the Vector was fairly easy to figure out although it would be beneficial to first read the instructional manual before you strap the watch on. Some people may find this watch a little big on their wrist for many “normal” types of activities although I still use mine for everyday use. The Vector has proven to be extremely durable for my use and hasn’t shown the wear and tear of other watches that I have had with scratches and abrasions. However, the lettering around the housing is beginning to show a touch of wear. Extremes in temperature in cold or hot weather has not seemed to affect the Vector’s functions. I’ve only had to change the battery once and it was easy to do. I have simply loved the high end altimeter for providing detailed data on altitude. I can actually access a 24-hour log that keeps track of my elevations gains and losses while backpacking out on the mountain. I have had to recalibrate the watch several times when traveling but this should be expected. The barometer is a very convenient feature as I have to face dangerous, severe changes in the weather when guiding. The barometer includes a four-day memory and trend indicator that can be helpful. I have used the thermometer on a regular basis, although, for accuracy, you should take your reading when the watch is not on your wrist. I like to attach it to my backpack. The Vector has a digital compass that allows you to set your bearing in degrees and track that bearing over time with an adjustment for local declination. I don’t use this feature that often since I always carry a GPS with me.


With a price tag of $200 the Vector isn’t cheap but is actually one of the more modestly priced watches that Suunto manufactures with price ranges from $99.99 to almost $1200.00. I consider the Vector to be a “mini-computer although it would be classified as a “middle-of-the-road model.”  For my use it is a perfect choice.   Many of the features may not be that useful for the normal person so you must analyze carefully what you will be using the watch for.

What They Could Do Better

  • Design the watch so that you can interchange various watch bands.


  • Functionality
  • Value
  • Ergonomics
  • Durability