When it comes to fitness tracking, rugged, and outdoor smartwatches, there’s no other brand that can outclass Garmin, and it is not an exaggeration. It has been almost 18 years since they launched their first Forerunner watch, and after that, this brand has come up with some of the best tactical and sports smartwatches over the past couple of years.
Finding the perfect Garmin watch is not difficult, but you have to be very precise about what exactly are you looking for, and I’d tell you why.
If your daily usage requires Heart rate/sleep monitoring, a bit of casual fitness tracking, and sometimes listening to music, then there’s no point in going for an outdoor smartwatch with high-end features, which you’re probably never going to use.
Of course, it’s the users who decide what they want to wear, but instead of battery-draining issues, you can go choose the watch which suits your lifestyle and can provide the features you’re for.
For that, we have reviewed some of the best Garmin watches and will be comparing them with each other, so you can have a definite idea of which one to pick.
Garmin Watch Comparison Table
|Display||Resolution||Weight||GPS||Health monitoring||Sport modes||Music||NFC||Battery life|
|Fenix 6X pro||1.3-inch||260 x 260pixels||83g||Yes||HR, Sleep, SpO2||Yes||Yes||Yes||21 days & 15 hours in GPS mode|
|Tactix Delta||1.4-inch||280 x 280 pixels||97g||Yes||HR, Sleep, SpO2, Stress||Yes||Yes||Yes||21 days & 60 hours in GPS mode|
|Vívoactive 4||1.3-inch||260 x 260 pixels||50.5g||Yes||Stress, Hydration, Respiration||Yes||Yes||Yes||8 days & 6 hours in GPS mode|
|Enduro||1.4-inch||280 x 280 pixels||72g||Yes||Pulse Ox, SpO2, HR, Sleep||Yes||Yes, but no music storage||Yes||65 days & 80 hours in GPS mode|
|Venu 2||1.3-inch||416 x 416 pixels||49g||Yes||Stress, Respiration, HR, Sleep||Yes||Yes||Yes||11 days & 8 hours in GPS|
|Instinct||1.27-inch||128 x 128 pixels||52g||Yes||HR, Sleep, Female health tracking||Yes||No||No||14 days and 16 hours in GPS mode|
|Lily||1-inch||240 x 201 pixels||24g||No||Respiration, Hydration, SpO2, Sleep, HR||No||No||No||5 days|
|Swim 2||1.04-inch||208 x 208 pixels||36g||Yes||Breathing guide, Respiration, HR, Sleep||Yes||Yes||Yes||7 days & 72 hours in Swim mode|
|Forerunner 945||1.2-inch||240 x 240 pixels||50g||Yes||HR, Sleep, VO2, SpO2||Yes||Yes||Yes||14 days and 10 hours in GPS mode|
|Forerunner 745||1.2-inch||240 x 240 pixels||47g||Yes||Hydration, Respiration, Female health tracking, HR, Sleep||Yes||Yes||Yes||7 days and 6 hours in GPS mode|
10 best Garmin watches
Garmin Fenix 6X Pro
Asin – B07W69KKHV
Unlike most smartwatches, Garmin has launched the Fenix’s series 6 in 14 different styles, which is rare to find. Every style has a few features, which you can choose according to your preferences, but the style we’re reviewing is Garmin Fenix 6X pro because it has a mixture of everything.
First off, the watch comes in a 1.4-inch LCD, which is 36% bigger than its predecessors, and a rugged design, which can withstand extreme conditions, as it has been tested against U.S. military standards.
Garmin Fenix 6X Pro cannot only monitor your heart rate, sleeping stages but also has this Pulse Ox sensor, through which you can see the blood oxygen levels (SpO2). Although it’s not intended for medical purposes it sure gives you insights right away.
Garmin has included the PacePro feature, especially for runners in this watch, which according to them has never been done before. Through this technology you’ll get complete guidance throughout your running session about the pace, and where you should accelerate by looking at your VO2 levels and other factors.
Fenix 6X Pro also comes with preloaded TOPO maps, so you can have the backup on your wrist, if you can’t seem to find your way home, that too with more than one navigation system (GPS, GLONASS, and Galileo).
With its performance metrics features, you see stats related to running, fitness, and much more. ABC sensors (Altimeter, Barometer, compass) are there to give you details about elevation, changes in weather, and direction).
Forget about the wallet, and pay from the watch with its Garmin Pay feature. You also store and play music while working out, and will be receiving all the notifications of calls, messages, and much more.
Garmin Fenix 6X Pro can work on both lithium battery and solar charging. This gives it 21 days to go on in smartwatch mode in which you get 3 extra days if the watch is being solar-charged and 15 hours in GPS mode.
Display Size: 1.4-inches
Display Type: LCD
Resolution: 260 x 260 pixels
Heart rate & Sleep tracking
Built-in TOPO maps
Multiple navigation systems
Clear easy-to-read display
Rugged, shock & water-resistant
Garmin Pay doesn’t work in all countries
Garmin tactix Delta
Asin – B083V7HGL9
Garmin Tactix Delta is one of the best tactical and military smartwatches available in the wearable market right now, with innovative and never-seen-before features. The watch itself comes in a 1.4-inch transflective MIP LCD, with a bezel mounted on the top, 5 buttons, and a comfortable black strap.
When on the mission you’ve to prepare yourself for the worst, since you never know what kind of circumstances you’d be facing, and for that, it comes with Stealth mode, which would cut all the wireless connection and GPS positioning so that your location can’t be tracked. And, if somehow your location does get exposed, just use its Kill Switch feature, which will erase all the data of the watch at the spot.
For Paratrooping, there’s a Jumpmaster mode which would calculate the high-altitude release points using military standards, and once you have jumped, it will take you to your objective’s position as well. You will also be seeing check both positioning formats; UTM (Universal transverse Mercator) and MGRS (Military Grid Reference system) right from your wrist.
ABC sensors make sure you can have all the details about elevation data, weather changes, and location. Tactix delta also has GPS, GLONASS, and Galileo positioning systems for tracking outdoor workouts and exercises, and with the night vision mode, you can use the watch while having the night goggles on.
With all these tactical features, Tactix Delta keeps on your health as well. You can check your heart rate, get to know about light, deep sleeping zones, measure blood oxygen, and stress levels with it. For females, there’s a feature for menstrual cycle tracking, so they can track their cycles and can get heads up before their due.
After pairing it up with the compatible smartphone, your notifications of every kind will be received directly on the watch, and you can also reply to text messages if you have an android phone. Listen to your favorite playlists, pay from the watch with its contactless payment options, and use the watch underwater, since it’s water-resistant to 100m.
Garmin Tactix Delta after being fully charged can last for about 21 days, and 60 hours in GPS mode, which is indeed a good battery life.
Display Size: 1.4-inches
Display Type: Transflective MIP LCD
Stealth mode & Kill Switch
Multiple positioning systems
Can withstand extreme conditions
Perfect for paratrooping and military persons
Garmin Vivoactive 4
Asin – B07W7W8WBH
Vivoactive 4 is more of a mixture of sports and smart features. It comes in a 1.3-inch round display, and two physical buttons on the right side of it. By the looks of it, Vivoactove 4 doesn’t give much of sports watch vibes but does have the features of it.
If you’re wearing this watch on your wrist, then you won’t be needing any fitness tracker, because it’s 20+ pre-loaded GPS sports modes, can track almost every type of workout and exercise for you, whether it’s running, swimming, hiking, yoga and many more.
For your ease it comes with on-screen animated workouts, so don’t waste time downloading several videos on the phone, and just follow the instructions on the watch for the perfect workouts.
Vivoactive 4 can be a perfect fit for runners since Garmin Coach is there to make sure you cross that 5/10k and marathons without wasting too much of the energy by providing personalized coaching and training.
The number of features it contains for monitoring especially your health will boggle your mind for sure. Along with heart rate and sleep monitoring, it can track your stress and respiration as well, which is amazing. On top of this, you’d be reminded to drink water with hydration reminders and females can their periods with the menstrual cycle tracker.
Download music on the watch, connect the Bluetooth headphones, and enjoy your workout songs without hassling with the phone at all. You can also reply to the incoming text messages if you have an android smartphone, along with receiving all the notifications on your wrist.
Forgot the wallet at home? No worries, just use the NFC payment option using Garmin Pay, and pay for the stuff from it. Vivoactive 4 also makes sure that you can have a physical backup in case of emergency with its built-in incident detection, through which the location would be sent to your contact automatically or manually.
After getting charged, Garmin Vivoactive 4 can go on for 8 days and almost 6 hours in GPS mode.
Display Size: 1.3-inch
Resolution: 260 x 260 pixels
Heart rate and sleep tracking
Stress and Respiration monitoring
20+ Sport modes
Simple design and good display
Detailed health monitoring
On-screen workout coaching
Can be personalized with different watch faces, apps, and widgets
Battery life in GPS is average
Asin – B08FSL97NT
Garmin Enduro is another high-end multisport watch, which has some of the very unique features ever. With a 1.4-inch display, steel or DLC coated titanium bezel mounted on the top of it, and comfortable straps, this watch can be a good fit for outdoor persons.
Garmin Enduro comes with preloaded sport modes which include hiking, rowing, golfing, swimming, running, and many more. To make sure you get accurate data about these outdoor activities, multiple navigation systems (GPS, GLONASS, Galileo) are there so you the stats as precise as possible.
Unlike most sports watches, which only have an altimeter for elevation data, this watch is perfect for those who are into climbing professionally, since it comes with a ClimbPro feature for the distance, elevation, gradient, descents, Flats, and much more.
Garmin Enduro suggests you do daily workouts after considering your body energy, training level, and load, so you can stay sharp and fit. Not only this, but it also tells you about the breaks you should take between workouts, so you be prepared for the next task.
You can monitor your heart rate with Enduro all the time and can see the difference in HR by comparing the resting heart rate with the one after your running session. Along with this, it would monitor your different stages of sleep and you can see how much sleep you’re getting at night.
Garmin Enduro will receive notifications of text messages, social apps, incoming calls, emails, etc. You can pay from the watch where contactless payment is accepted, find your phone, and check weather updates with it as well.
Jump into the swimming pool, or take it with you for light diving and snorkeling, as it has 100m water resistance, which can withstand such conditions. You can monitor your heart rate under the water and see how it changes after a while.
With all these amazing features, Garmin Enduro’s battery life doesn’t disappoint as well. It can last for 65 days in smartwatch mode, more than 80 hours in GPS mode, and works on solar charging as well.
Display Size: 1.4-inch
GPS, GLONASS, Galileo
Body battery dynamics
Perfect for climbers
Good battery life
Garmin Venu 2
Asin – B0911XHHCN
Garmin Venu 2 is the latest watch of this series and the successor of Venu. It was released in the first quarter of this year alongside Venu 2s, Venu Sq, and Venu Sq Music. The watch we’re reviewing is Venu 2, which looks stunning, and has some really good features. Let’s have a look at them.
Get insights about light, deep, and REM zones during the night, with the sleep score to see how much sleep you’re getting, and what bedtime changes you need to make for improving it. Venu 2 will let you track your heart rate any time of the day, along with blood oxygen levels as well.
If you’re having a stressful day at work, the watch will remind you to take a break and can do some breathing exercises for releasing that stress. On top of these, Garmin has its own women health tracking feature, through which females can track their periods, pregnancy and get nutritional education, right from their wrist.
Although Venu 2 comes with 15 indoor and outdoor sport modes, which will cover your favorite ones. That said, if you still want to make it more personal, then after downloading the Garmin Connect app on your phone, you can have more than 1400 exercises on your wrist, which is amazing.
For your ease, Venu 2 comes with animated workouts that would provide on-screen instruction on how to work out properly, and with a Garmin coach you can train yourself for marathons and running as well.
During workouts or exercises, you can listen to your favorite music without touching the phone and can make payments from the watch with its Garmin pay feature. After being paired with the phone, Venu 2 will be receiving all the notifications on it, and in an emergency, your location will be sent automatically or manually to your contacts with its safety tracking, so you can have a physical backup on time.
Garmin Venu 2 can last for 11 days in smartwatch mode and almost 8 hours in GPS or Music mode.
Display Size: 1.3-inches
Heart rate and sleep tracking
Stress and female health monitoring
Built-in sport modes
Available in different styles and colors
Good health tracking features
Can reply to texts
Battery life in GPS mode could have been better
Asin – B07HYX9P88
Just like Fenix 6, Garmin released this watch alongside 8 other styles which include Solar, Camo, Tactical, Esports, and other editions. The model we’re reviewing is Garmin Instinct, which comes in a 1.2-inch transflective MIP display, with a resolution of 128 x 128 pixels, which is low as compared to the models mentioned above, but since it was released in 2018, so we’re going to let it slide.
Garmin Instinct is more of a simpler multisport watch, which means it doesn’t have a plethora of features, but it can track your fitness and daily activities. It has preloaded activity profiles, and multiple navigation systems to keep an eye on your outdoor workouts and exercises.
Along with this, it has an altimeter for elevation data, a barometer for detecting weather changes, a compass to determine direction, and TracBack feature to get your way back home which you have used earlier for reaching destination points.
Wear Garmin Instinct on the wrist while sleeping to check the amount of deep sleep and your sleeping patterns. You can also track the heart rate manually after a workout, compare it with the resting heart rate to see the difference.
Not only it will receive notifications of calls, messages, and social apps, but you join the online fitness community with Garmin Connect to see the latest trends, tracking, etc. You can even plan your adventurous trips with Garmin Explore to truly get the essence of it.
Garmin Instinct is 100m water-resistance, which makes sure that you can wear it while swimming, showering, light diving/snorkeling, and it won’t get damaged at all.
Depends on the features you’d be using the most, but it can last for 14 days in smartwatch mode, and 16 hours in GPS mode.
Display Size: 1.27-inches
Display Type: Transflective MIP
Resolution: 128 x 128 pixels
Sleep and heart rate tracking
Female health monitoring
Good battery life
Available in multiple styles and colors
good fitness tracking features
No NFC payments
Doesn’t have underwater heart rate tracking
No safety tracking
Asin – B08RMFLLH2
Garmin launched this smartwatch especially for females, and it can be perfect for girls who want to keep an eye on their health and fitness activities. Lily comes in a 1-inch display, which is small considering the above-mentioned watches, but female watches tend to have smaller displays and sizes because of their wrist.
“Don’t judge a book by its cover” fits perfectly on Garmin lily, which comes with so many health-tracking features, in such a compact design. First off, the wrist-based heart rate keeps track of your HR and sends notifications if it goes high or low. Secondly, you can monitor your sleep at night and can get all the details about light, deep, and REM zones during the night.
If you’re feeling tensed or stressed, the watch will let you know about it, so you can take a couple of minutes off, and relax for a while with its reminders. You can also do breathing activity, and can get stats about respiration throughout the day.
Along with this, the watch has body battery energy, through which you can get an idea about the best-suited time for workouts and exercises. Hydration tracking is also there, which gives you all the details about fluid intake, goals, and progress as well.
Since the Garmin lily is made for females, and that’s why it has a female health tracking feature, which would allow them to prepare for their menstrual cycles on time, get info about different exercises and nutrition, right from their wrist.
Lily is more of an activity tracker than a fitness tracker per se since it can track your daily step count, distance traveled, and burnt calories, but it doesn’t have any sport modes or built-in GPS for outdoor fitness tracking.
It will receive all the notifications of incoming calls, messages, and other apps. You can reply to the texts if you have an android phone, and with its safety tracking, your location will be sent to the contacts in emergencies. And, surprisingly enough, Garmin Lily has 50 water-resistance for your swimming session as well.
Garmin Lily will be lasting for 5 days in smartwatch mode, with moderate usage.
Color: Rose Gold
Display Size: 1-inch
Display Type: TFT LCD
Heart rate and sleep tracking
Hydration and Respiratory monitor
Body battery energy tracking
Comfortable in wearing
Perfect for females
God-tier health tracking
No Sport modes
No built-in GPS
No advance fitness tracking
Garmin Swim 2
Asin – B07XHLF7TV
Just like Garmin smartwatches for running, climbing, and outdoor adventures, this amazing watch is designed specifically for swimmers. With a 1.04-inch round display, resolution of 208 x 208 pixels, physical buttons on the side, and lightweight design, this can be a perfect fit for any swimmer out there.
Garmin Swim 2 is not some ordinary smartwatch with water resistance, with the type of features it possesses, it’d be a good fit for even professional swimmers. First off, the watch can be used for pool swimming and open water.
When you’re swimming in the pool, it will record your distance, stroke, pace count, stroke type, and SWOLF which determines how efficient your swimming has been. The watch will also be keeping track of the whole swimming session along with the rest intervals, so you see the stats in detail.
For open water, Garmin Swim 2 will be using its built-in GPS for keeping track of your swimming sessions in lakes, rivers, and oceans. You will be getting the stats of stroke distance/counts, SWOLF, pace, etc. without having to track any of them manually.
Along with this, Swim 2 also has some advanced swimming features, which you can use to train yourself professionally, such as Critical Swim Speed, turn-based pacing alerts, Drill logging, and lets you track the rest intervals as well.
With Garmin Swim 2 you can even track your heart rate under the water when you swim, and not only this, but with the Garmin Connect app, you can even see the differences between heart rate zones during rest intervals easily. It can also monitor your sleep, keep track of your stress, and body battery through which you can see if you’re even ready for the next swim or not.
Swimmers can also use the breathing guide if they face a hard time breathing due to several reasons, and in this way, this will have a physical backup at their wrist all the time.
Apart from swimming, you can also track your fitness activities. You will get all the notifications on the watch and can connect yourself with the online community, where you have the option to upload your workout data, interact with friends/family members as well.
Garmin Swim 2 can last for 7 days in smartwatch mode and almost 72 hours in swimming mode.
Display Size: 1.04-inch
Resolution: 208 x 208 pixels
Open water and Swimming pool tracking
Underwater-heart rate tracking
Perfect for swimming
Not offering many features of fitness tracking
Garmin Forerunner 945
Asin – B07QTVMWVL
This aesthetic watch comes in a 1.2-inch Transflective MIP round display, with a resolution of 240 x 240 pixels, ensuring the clarity in seeing it under direct sunlight, and if you’re looking for a premium GPS watch, then Forerunner 945 can be a really good fit for your wrist.
Forerunner 945 is the ultimate beast in tracking your fitness activities, sport modes and provides complete training. First off, the watch has a built-in colored mapping for your outdoor running, cycling, and hiking, so you never be lost out there. Secondly, you can get the best routes and trails with its Treadline popularity routing, that too directly from the watch.
Apart from this, you can train yourself professionally for running, cycling, and other sports with it using Training status which gives you the detailed stats of workout history. You can check also check when exactly will your body be ready for the next workout with its recovery time feature as well.
All of this outdoor tracking carries out with its multiple navigation systems (GPS, GLONASS, Galileo) so you can have the accurate stats of your workouts and exercise sessions.
Garmin Forerunner 945 can track your heart rate in no time. Just wear it on the wrist, and within a few taps, you will have the heart rate on the display. You can also check sleeping stages, and blood oxygen levels with it, which are not meant to be used for medical purposes but it’s still good for getting indications about it.
Premium Music player
You might have to buy the premium subscription for the 3rd party music apps, but the watch itself can store up to 1000 songs which you can listen to after connecting Bluetooth headphones and enjoying morning walks/running sessions without hassling with your phone.
Forerunner 945 lets you pay from the watch where contactless payments are accepted, so you can stop carrying your wallet everywhere. After pairing with a compatible smartwatch, you will be receiving notifications of it, and you can also switch to its LTE version, for more standalone features.
You can use Garmin Forerunner 945 for 14 days with moderate usage, and 10 hours in continuous GPS mode.
Display Size: 1.2-inch
Display Resolution: 240 x 240 pixels
Premium running features
Standalone music player
Average battery life in GPS mode
Garmin Forerunner 745
Asin – B08G585XYJ
Garmin Forerunner 745 is our last but not the least pick in this article. With an aesthetic design and innovative features, it has the potential to be one for you.
It comes with built-in sport modes for cycling, running, swimming (both open and pool water), and your other favorite workouts as well. You can get proper cycling and running dynamics, such as cadence, stride length, balance, etc. along with deep insights to improve these sessions.
With its Training load and training effect feature, you can see your fitness activities over the past 7 days and will know exactly how it’s affecting your speed, along with other factors.
Forerunner 745 will be giving you all the details about light, deep, and REM zones during the night. You can also have your sleeping score to see how well you’re sleeping at night. On top of this, it can monitor heart rate, hydration, blood oxygen levels, Respiration rate, Female health tracking, etc.
You can respond to incoming messages with Forerunner 745 if you have an android phone, and it will receive the notifications without any delay. You can also find your phone, play/Store music in it, and can pay from the watch as well.
Garmin Forerunner 745 can last for 7 days in smartwatch mode and 6 hours in GPS mode.
Display Size: 1.2-inch
Resolution: 240 x 240 pixels
Heart rate and sleep tracking
Respiration and hydration tracking
Female health monitoring
Running, cycling features
Perfect for cycling
Can store music
Accurate outdoor tracking
Garmin Pay doesn’t work everywhere
All the watches mentioned above are the best Garmin watches without any shadow of a doubt. That said, I would choose Fenix 6X Pro over everything, and here’s why.
Firstly, the watch is a piece of art when it comes to having aesthetic look, and secondly, it has every feature you’d need in a multisport watch. So, I’d recommend you go with this one.
That said, it can be a hefty pick, so if you’re short on money, Garmin Instinct can be a good choice for you, which has some good features and it won’t be costing you much as well.
Are Garmin Smartwatches worth it?
Garmin smartwatches are worth it if you’re looking for a rugged outdoor watch, which can withstand extreme conditions.
Can you make calls on Garmin watches?
You cannot make calls from every Garmin watch, but only from those which have a built-in microphone and speaker, such as Vivoactive 4.
Can you reply to texts from Garmin watches?
Ans: Yes, you can respond to texts from Garmin watches but this feature only works if you have an android phone.
Can you swim with Garmin watches?
Ans: Yes, most of them come with 50 or 100m water-resistant, which makes sure you not only swim but also track them as well.
What are the best Garmin watches for men?
Ans: Garmin Fenix 6X Pro, Tactix Delta, Enduro, Forerunner 945, and Swim 2 are some of the best Garmin smartwatches for men.
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