Garmin 920XT Review

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The Garmin 920XT, showing the display of Cadence, Vertical Oscillation and Ground Contact Time.

The Garmin 920XT is an update to the 910XT, adding many of the features from the Garmin 620 while shrinking in size to become far less bulky than its predecessor. It's a large watch, but I found it comfortable even on my tiny wrists. Its GPS Accuracy is disappointing, and using the Russian GLONASS satellites makes this worse. However, the 920XT is the first of several watches in the Garmin range to support the revolutionary Connect IQ. This will allow the 920XT to run application, much like a smartphone.

  • The 920XT is a great device for casual runners. Its clear display, real buttons, and rich functionality make it an attractive option if you can afford it. The Connect IQ extensibility adds some potential future proofing.
  • For marathon runners the 920XT lacks a critical feature; an accurate display of current pace. While I don't expect most casual runners will be as concerned by the lack of accurate current pace, this is critical to many marathon training programs, and to effective marathon pacing strategy. The only way I found of getting accurate current pace is to use the older Garmin 610, Garmin 310XT, or [[[Garmin 910XT]] with a Footpod.
  • For ultramarathon running the battery life of the 920XT makes it a strong candidate. See Watches for Ultrarunning for more details.

1 GPS Accuracy

The GPS Accuracy for the 920XT is middling; it's not the worst I've seen, but it's far from the best. Determining if it's good enough for you will depend on your usage.

  • The 920XT will give you a reasonable estimate of how far you've run and your overall average pace. The level of error will depend on your route; on straight lines it will be remarkably accurate (as will any other GPS watch), but on a twisty course like the one I run on, it is out by around 0.5 miles on a 20 mile run. That's enough to mess up your marathon training.
  • Sadly GPS is not accurate enough to give you a useful reading of current pace. For that you need the older Garmin 610, Garmin 310XT, or [[[Garmin 910XT]] with a Footpod. Those devices will allow you to get your current pace from the footpod while using GPS for everything else. Of course, it's quite likely that Connect IQ will allow this to be added to the 920XT.
  • I've tested the 920XT with and without GLONASS enabled, and surprisingly the accuracy is worse with GLONASS. In theory, GLONASS (the Russian equivalent to GPS) should improve accuracy, but that does not appear to be the case.

If you want better GPS Accuracy than the 920XT, then the Polar V800 is by far the best I've tested.

2 Garmin 920XT Pros

  • The 920XT supports Garmin's Connect IQ, which allows for the creation of apps in much the same way you can run apps on Android or iOS. Just like the original iPhone, this has the potential to be revolutionary, making the 920XT an extensible platform for future functionality.
  • The 920XT is quite a bit bigger than devices like the Garmin 620 that look more like a traditional watch. However, I have tiny wrists (less than 6 inches) and I found 920XT was far more comfortable than watches like the Polar V800.
  • The 920XT has a good sized color display that is easier to read than some watches. Unlike the Garmin 620, the color display on 920XT is quite strong. I'm not sure that color adds much functionality, but it does make the 920XT more visually appealing. While the 920XT has a slightly smaller display than its predecessor, the 910XT, it has nearly twice the resolution, creating a far crisper display.
  • Like the Garmin 620 and Fenix 2, the 920XT will show and record Cadence, Vertical Oscillation (VO) and Ground Contact Time (GCT). The 920XT has a nice display of Cadence, VO, and GCT that gives a color coded indication of how well you're doing.
  • The 920XT can be configured to alert you when a metric is out of range. The alert for Cadence is particularly useful. The Cadence alert will work when it's using the internal accelerometer for Cadence, as well as the HRM-Run strap or a Footpod.
  • The 920XT includes a metronome to help you keep your Cadence where it should be, a really nice feature. The metronome can be set to make a sound and/or vibrate. The vibration option is nice so you don't annoy people you're running with. You can set the alert to go off every second, fourth, or sixth beat.
  • The 920XT can display the Firstbeat Training Effect, an indicator of how hard a training session is. While I find this useful, it's important to remember that the Training Effect is strongly biased towards intensity rather than duration.
  • The 920XT includes the Firstbeat Estimate of Recovery Time before the next workout, which I also like, though you have to take this with a large pinch of salt.
  • The 920XT will cache the GPS satellite locations for the next few days to reduce startup time. This is particularly useful when travelling to a new location as older devices can take minutes to get a fix when travelling. I hate standing around on a street corner in the cold, dark, early hours of the morning waiting for my watch to tell me I can start running. In my testing the satellite acquisition was always very rapid, and the 920XT is sensitive enough to get a fix inside my house.
  • The 920XT uses six real buttons rather than a touchscreen, which I think is much better when you're running.
  • The prediction of your V̇O2max worked well for me, but I would not rely on its accuracy.
  • The 920XT will upload your workouts to Garmin Connect via WiFi without needing a computer. It will also link to a smart phone to upload a workout as it takes place, which is nice for folks tracking you during a race, though it means wearing the watch and the phone together.
  • The 920XT will not display Heart Rate Variability but it is possible for it to record Heart Rate Variability for later analysis. To enable this recording, you need to download a special FIT file from the firstbeat.com web site. (It's quite probable that Connect IQ will enable apps to provide this functionality in the future.)
  • The 24 hour battery life is good enough for many ultramarathons, and the extended mode allows for 50 hours with degraded GPS accuracy. In my informal testing of the extended mode, the 920XT did not perform as badly as I expected.
  • You can use the 920XT as an activity monitor, something that's common to many new sports watches. However, because the 920XT is only using its internal accelerometer the activity estimates are rather poor. If you need an activity monitor, I'd recommend the Basis Activity Tracker which has sensors for heart rate, skin temperature and perspiration.
  • The 920XT will record your personal best performances, such as fasted 5K or longest distance. These are a nice novelty, but for most people you want besetting PR's on a regular enough basis for it to add much value.

3 Garmin 920XT Cons

  • There is no way of displaying your current pace from the Footpod while using GPS for overall distance and course. Like all GPS watches, the 920XT does not have sufficient GPS accuracy to give useful current pace information. For situations where pacing is critical, such as running a marathon, a Footpod works better. (This is another situation where Connect IQ could enable apps to provide this functionality in the future.)
  • There is a nice map display for navigation, but Garmin has not implemented a resume. This makes the navigation pretty useless, and seems to be an intentional crippling of the device. It's possible that this might be fixed in a future firmware update, but it's also possible that the crippling is to create product differentiation for devices like the Garmin Fenix 2.
  • The 920XT includes an internal accelerometer to give you an idea of pace and distance while running on a treadmill without a footpod, but I found the accuracy was rather poor. I've yet to come across a watch that can reasonably estimate your pace from the movement of your wrist, nor does it seem likely that this functionality is practical.
  • You need to have the new HRM for the new features. It will display Heart Rate and calculate Training Effect with the older Garmin HRM, but not Ground Contact Time or Vertical Oscillation.
  • The 920 XT is not unattractive in a rather plastic way, but it's nowhere near as elegant and stylish as the Polar V800.

4 Comparisons

Here are some of the watches that our competitors for the 920XT:

  • Garmin 620. The features of the 620 are remarkably similar to the 920XT. The 620 is smaller, but has a shorter battery life. However, the biggest difference between the two is that the 920XT has the Connect IQ extensibility. I think that the extensibility of the 920XT makes it well worth the price premium over the 620, so only get the 620 if its small size is critical to you.
  • Garmin 610. The 610 the predecessor to the Garmin 620 and its price has dropped to make it an attractive option. While the 610 lacks many of the cool new features of the 620/920XT, it performs the core functionality you need is a runner as well as (or better than) the newer devices. When I'm pacing marathons, I still make use of the 610 with a Footpod to keep me on pace. (I'm hopeful that the ability to get current pace from a Footpod will be added to the 920XT through Connect IQ.) I would recommend giving the Garmin 610 serious consideration, even though it's an older device.
  • Garmin 310XT. Like the 610, the 310XT is older and its price has dropped nicely. You could think of the 310XT as a larger 610 with better battery life.
  • Garmin 910XT. The 910XT is a little better than the 310XT, but quite a lot more expensive. Until the price of the 910XT drops to be much closer to the 310XT, I don't think it's worth it; buy the 310XT or the 920XT, not the 910XT.
  • Polar V800. The V800 is a far more elegant watch than the 920XT, and is beautifully made. The V800 also has outstanding GPS accuracy, which makes it a strong contender for your money. However the V800 is quite expensive, and it can only display your Cadence if you're using the enormous Polar stride Sensor. I believe that Cadence is so critical to efficient running and injury prevention that I find it hard to recommend the V800.

5 What's Missing

While I don't consider these missing features as 'cons', it's worth understanding the features that are missing compared with other watches. You'll notice that the 920XT has a rather short list of missing features ;}

  • Graphs. Instead of simply displaying a numeric value for things like heart rate, some watches will display a graph of the value over time, giving you a sense of how things are progressing. (As mentioned earlier, Connect IQ will add this functionality.))
  • Web Configuration. Some watches allow you to setup the configuration via a web site, and then download your changes. This is vastly easier than fiddling with the watch.
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This review was made possible by readers like you buying products via my links. I buy all the products I review through normal retail channels, which allows me to create unbiased reviews free from the influence of reciprocity, or the need to keep vendors happy. It also ensures I don't get "reviewer specials" that are better than the retail versions.

6 Comparison Table

I evaluate running watches in three distinct ways. Firstly, you can use a watch on its own, without any kind of Footpod. This is probably the most common way runners use their watch, but you miss out on a lot. The second rating is with a standard Footpod that is available quite cheaply. These Footpod's can be reasonably accurate once the calibrated, but calibration is a little tedious. The final evaluation is with the Stryd Footpod, which is vastly more accurate than any other type of Footpod, or and more accurate than GPS. The table below looks at the score, and the value for money of each watch for each of the three conditions. (I’ve also tested the Apple Watch 3, but I’ve not included it in these tables as it’s not really a running watch.)

Review With Stryd Score With Stryd Value for money With Footpod Score With Footpod Value for money Without Footpod Score Without Footpod Value for money Price at Amazon.com
Garmin Epix Review 47 4.5 31 3.9 23 3.4 Garmin Epix
Garmin Fenix 5X Review 47 2.9 32 2.3 24 1.9 Fenix 5X
Garmin Fenix 3 Review 45 3.8 28 3.1 24 3 Fenix 3
Garmin 935 Review 45 3.6 30 3 22 2.4 Garmin 935
Garmin Vivoactive HR Review 40 4.9 21 3.8 17 3.8 Garmin Vivoactive HR
Garmin 920XT Review 39 4.4 30 4.7 24 4.5 Garmin 920XT without HRM
Suunto Spartan Ultra Review 37 2.6 27 2.3 23 2.1 Suunto Spartan Ultra
Garmin Vivoactive 3 Review 36 4 19 2.9 15 2.8 Garmin Vivoactive 3
Garmin Vivoactive Review 34 5.1 14 3.4 10 3.3 Garmin Vivoactive
Suunto Spartan Trainer Review 34 3.9 23 3.7 18 3.4 Suunto Spartan Trainer
Polar V800 Review 33 2.8 26 2.8 22 2.7 Polar V800 without HRM
Suunto Ambit2 Review 32 3.9 25 4.3 21 4.5 Suunto Ambit2
Suunto Ambit3 Peak Review 32 3.4 29 4.1 25 4.2 Suunto Ambit3 Peak
Garmin Fenix 2 Review 31 2.9 22 2.7 18 2.5 Garmin Fenix 2 without HRM
Suunto Ambit3 Run Review 30 4 27 5.5 23 5.9 Suunto Ambit3 Run
Suunto Ambit2 R Review 30 3.5 23 3.8 19 3.8 Suunto Ambit2 R without HRM
Garmin 235 Review 28 2.9 20 2.8 12 2 Garmin 235
Garmin 620 Review 27 3.8 24 5.1 20 5.6 Garmin 620 without HRM
Garmin 910XT Review 26 3.9 26 6.1 21 6.7 Garmin 910XT without HRM
Garmin 310XT Review 25 4.6 24 8.3 18 10 Garmin 310XT without HRM
Polar M400 Review 25 4.3 15 4.5 11 4.9 Polar M400 without HRM
Garmin 225 Review 25 3.8 13 3.1 9 2.9 Garmin 225
TomTom Cardio Runner Review 25 3.3 10 2 10 2.5 TomTom Cardio Runner
Polar M430 Review 25 3.2 15 2.9 11 2.7 Polar M430 without HRM
Garmin 610 Review 24 3.3 20 4.3 14 3.9 Garmin 610 without HRM
Leikr Review 10 1 20 2.5 14 2 Leikr ($380)
Epson SF-510 Review 4 0.7 6 2 6 3 Epson SF-510
Epson SF-810 Review 4 0.6 6 1.6 6 2.3 Epson SF-810
Garmin 10 Review 2 0.3 2 0.6 2 0.9 Garmin 10 (Est.

The score is the sum of how well each watch can answer the four basic questions (how far, how fast, where are you, what's your cadence), plus some bonus points.

  1. The "How far you've run" will be based on GPS only for "without Footpod" and "with Standard Footpod", but based on Stryd if supported in the "with Stryd Footpod" table..
  2. How fast you're running assumes you're using a Footpod if it's supported, otherwise the rating is 0-2 based on GPS accuracy.
  3. The "Where are you?" is based on various navigation features such as back to start, breadcrumbs, and preloaded maps. For some watches, you have to turn GPS off to get the benefit of Stryd, so those watches have worse "where are you scores" with Stryd than without.
  4. The cadence score uses 1 point for an internal cadence sensor, 2 points for footpod support, 1 point for support from chest strap cadence, and 1 point for cadence alerts.
  5. I give 1-2 bonus points for application support, 1-2 bonus points for data upload, 1-2 bonus points for Optical Heart Rate Monitoring, and 0-1 bonus points for battery life.
  6. Value for money is the score divided by the price (at the time I last updated the table.) Your needs may be different, so you might weight the different aspects of the watches differently, or be basing your decision on different criteria totally. Hopefully this table will give you a good starting point for your decision.

6.1 Score Breakdown without a Footpod

Review Score Value for money6 How far did
you run?1
How fast are
you running?2
Where are
you?3
What's your
cadence?4
Bonus Points5 class="unsortable" |

Price at Amazon.com

Suunto Ambit3 Peak Review 25 4.2 8 3 6 2 6 Suunto Ambit3 Peak
Garmin 920XT Review 24 4.5 1 2 7 6 8 Garmin 920XT without HRM
Garmin Fenix 3 Review 24 3 2 1 7 6 8 Fenix 3
Garmin Fenix 5X Review 24 1.9 1 0 9 6 8 Fenix 5X
Suunto Ambit3 Run Review 23 5.9 8 3 5 2 5 Suunto Ambit3 Run
Garmin Epix Review 23 3.4 0 0 9 6 8 Garmin Epix
Suunto Spartan Ultra Review 23 2.1 8 2 6 2 5 Suunto Spartan Ultra
Polar V800 Review 22 2.7 9 4 3 2 4 Polar V800 without HRM
Garmin 935 Review 22 2.4 1 0 7 6 8 Garmin 935
Garmin 910XT Review 21 6.7 5 3 6 2 5 Garmin 910XT without HRM
Suunto Ambit2 Review 21 4.5 4 3 6 2 6 Suunto Ambit2
Garmin 620 Review 20 5.6 3 2 2 6 7 Garmin 620 without HRM
Suunto Ambit2 R Review 19 3.8 4 3 5 2 5 Suunto Ambit2 R without HRM
Garmin 310XT Review 18 10 7 2 4 0 5 Garmin 310XT without HRM
Suunto Spartan Trainer Review 18 3.4 5 3 4 2 4 Suunto Spartan Trainer
Garmin Fenix 2 Review 18 2.5 1 0 6 6 5 Garmin Fenix 2 without HRM
Garmin Vivoactive HR Review 17 3.8 0 0 2 6 9 Garmin Vivoactive HR
Garmin Vivoactive 3 Review 15 2.8 0 0 4 4 7 Garmin Vivoactive 3
Garmin 610 Review 14 3.9 3 2 3 2 4 Garmin 610 without HRM
Leikr Review 14 2 5 2 4 0 3 Leikr ($380)
Garmin 235 Review 12 2 0 0 2 2 8 Garmin 235
Polar M400 Review 11 4.9 3 1 1 2 4 Polar M400 without HRM
Polar M430 Review 11 2.7 3 1 1 2 4 Polar M430 without HRM
Garmin Vivoactive Review 10 3.3 0 0 0 6 4 Garmin Vivoactive
TomTom Cardio Runner Review 10 2.5 2 1 0 2 5 TomTom Cardio Runner
Garmin 225 Review 9 2.9 1 1 0 2 5 Garmin 225
Epson SF-510 Review 6 3 0 0 0 2 4 Epson SF-510
Epson SF-810 Review 6 2.3 1 0 0 2 3 Epson SF-810
Garmin 10 Review 2 0.9 0 0 0 0 2 Garmin 10 (Est.

6.2 Score Breakdown with a Standard Footpod

Review Score Value for money6 How far did
you run?1
How fast are
you running?2
Where are
you?3
What's your
cadence?4
Bonus Points5 class="unsortable" |

Price at Amazon.com

Garmin Fenix 5X Review 32 2.3 1 4 9 10 8 Fenix 5X
Garmin Epix Review 31 3.9 0 4 9 10 8 Garmin Epix
Garmin 920XT Review 30 4.7 1 4 7 10 8 Garmin 920XT without HRM
Garmin 935 Review 30 3 1 4 7 10 8 Garmin 935
Suunto Ambit3 Peak Review 29 4.1 8 3 6 6 6 Suunto Ambit3 Peak
Garmin Fenix 3 Review 28 3.1 2 1 7 10 8 Fenix 3
Suunto Ambit3 Run Review 27 5.5 8 3 5 6 5 Suunto Ambit3 Run
Suunto Spartan Ultra Review 27 2.3 8 2 6 6 5 Suunto Spartan Ultra
Garmin 910XT Review 26 6.1 5 4 6 6 5 Garmin 910XT without HRM
Polar V800 Review 26 2.8 9 4 3 6 4 Polar V800 without HRM
Suunto Ambit2 Review 25 4.3 4 3 6 6 6 Suunto Ambit2
Garmin 310XT Review 24 8.3 7 4 4 4 5 Garmin 310XT without HRM
Garmin 620 Review 24 5.1 3 2 2 10 7 Garmin 620 without HRM
Suunto Ambit2 R Review 23 3.8 4 3 5 6 5 Suunto Ambit2 R without HRM
Suunto Spartan Trainer Review 23 3.7 5 4 4 6 4 Suunto Spartan Trainer
Garmin Fenix 2 Review 22 2.7 1 0 6 10 5 Garmin Fenix 2 without HRM
Garmin Vivoactive HR Review 21 3.8 0 0 2 10 9 Garmin Vivoactive HR
Garmin 610 Review 20 4.3 3 4 3 6 4 Garmin 610 without HRM
Garmin 235 Review 20 2.8 0 4 2 6 8 Garmin 235
Leikr Review 20 2.5 5 4 4 4 3 Leikr ($380)
Garmin Vivoactive 3 Review 19 2.9 0 0 4 8 7 Garmin Vivoactive 3
Polar M400 Review 15 4.5 3 1 1 6 4 Polar M400 without HRM
Polar M430 Review 15 2.9 3 1 1 6 4 Polar M430 without HRM
Garmin Vivoactive Review 14 3.4 0 0 0 10 4 Garmin Vivoactive
Garmin 225 Review 13 3.1 1 1 0 6 5 Garmin 225
TomTom Cardio Runner Review 10 2 2 1 0 2 5 TomTom Cardio Runner
Epson SF-510 Review 6 2 0 0 0 2 4 Epson SF-510
Epson SF-810 Review 6 1.6 1 0 0 2 3 Epson SF-810
Garmin 10 Review 2 0.6 0 0 0 0 2 Garmin 10 (Est.

6.3 Score Breakdown with a Stryd Footpod

Review Score Value for money6 How far did
you run?1
How fast are
you running?2
Where are
you?3
What's your
cadence?4
Bonus Points5 class="unsortable" |

Price at Amazon.com

Garmin Epix Review 47 4.5 10 10 9 10 8 Garmin Epix
Garmin Fenix 5X Review 47 2.9 10 10 9 10 8 Fenix 5X
Garmin Fenix 3 Review 45 3.8 10 10 7 10 8 Fenix 3
Garmin 935 Review 45 3.6 10 10 7 10 8 Garmin 935
Garmin Vivoactive HR Review 40 4.9 10 10 1 10 9 Garmin Vivoactive HR
Garmin 920XT Review 39 4.4 10 10 1 10 8 Garmin 920XT without HRM
Suunto Spartan Ultra Review 37 2.6 10 10 6 6 5 Suunto Spartan Ultra
Garmin Vivoactive 3 Review 36 4 10 10 1 8 7 Garmin Vivoactive 3
Garmin Vivoactive Review 34 5.1 10 10 0 10 4 Garmin Vivoactive
Suunto Spartan Trainer Review 34 3.9 10 10 4 6 4 Suunto Spartan Trainer
Polar V800 Review 33 2.8 10 10 3 6 4 Polar V800 without HRM
Suunto Ambit2 Review 32 3.9 10 10 6 0 6 Suunto Ambit2
Suunto Ambit3 Peak Review 32 3.4 10 10 6 0 6 Suunto Ambit3 Peak
Garmin Fenix 2 Review 31 2.9 10 10 6 0 5 Garmin Fenix 2 without HRM
Suunto Ambit3 Run Review 30 4 10 10 5 0 5 Suunto Ambit3 Run
Suunto Ambit2 R Review 30 3.5 10 10 5 0 5 Suunto Ambit2 R without HRM
Garmin 235 Review 28 2.9 10 10 0 0 8 Garmin 235
Garmin 620 Review 27 3.8 10 10 0 0 7 Garmin 620 without HRM
Garmin 910XT Review 26 3.9 10 10 1 0 5 Garmin 910XT without HRM
Garmin 310XT Review 25 4.6 10 10 0 0 5 Garmin 310XT without HRM
Polar M400 Review 25 4.3 10 10 1 0 4 Polar M400 without HRM
Garmin 225 Review 25 3.8 10 10 0 0 5 Garmin 225
TomTom Cardio Runner Review 25 3.3 10 10 0 0 5 TomTom Cardio Runner
Polar M430 Review 25 3.2 10 10 1 0 4 Polar M430 without HRM
Garmin 610 Review 24 3.3 10 10 0 0 4 Garmin 610 without HRM
Leikr Review 10 1 5 2 0 0 3 Leikr ($380)
Epson SF-510 Review 4 0.7 0 0 0 0 4 Epson SF-510
Epson SF-810 Review 4 0.6 1 0 0 0 3 Epson SF-810
Garmin 10 Review 2 0.3 0 0 0 0 2 Garmin 10 (Est.

6.4 Basic Features

Review

Released GPS
Accuracy
Weight (oz) Size (CM3) Display (mm) Resolution (Pixels) Waterproofing Heart Rate
Monitor
Cadence Data Upload
Garmin Epix Review 2015 6.2 3.0 48 29 x 21 (609mm2) 205 x 148 (30.3K total) Good (50m) Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Garmin Fenix 5X Review 2017 5.6 3.5 36 30.5 (round) (731mm2) 240 diameter (45.2K total) Good (100m) Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Garmin Fenix 3 Review 2015 6.2 2.9 33 30 (round) (726mm2) 218 diameter (37.3K total) Good (100m) Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Garmin 935 Review 2017 5.6 1.7 24 30.5 (round) (731mm2) 240 diameter (45.2K total) Good (100m) Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Garmin Vivoactive HR Review 2016 4.9 1.7 19 21 x 29 (609mm2) 148 x 205 (30.3K total) Good (50m) Yes (+OHRM) Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Garmin 920XT Review 2014 6.6 2.2 35 29 x 21 (609mm2) 205 x 148 (30.3K total) Good (50m) Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Garmin Vivoactive 3 Review 2017 1.5 17 30.5 (round) (731mm2) 240 diameter (45.2K total) Good (50m) Yes (+OHRM) Internal/Footpod Yes
Garmin Vivoactive Review 2015 5.4 1.3 13 29 x 21 (592mm2) 205 x 148 (30.3K total) Good (50m) Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Suunto Spartan Trainer Review 2017 7.8 2.0 25 24 x 23 (529mm2) 128 diameter (12.9K total) Good (50m) Yes (+OHRM) Internal/Footpod Yes
Suunto Ambit2 Review 2013 7.6 3.1 30 29 (round) (661mm2) 128 diameter (12.9K total) Good (100m) Yes Internal/Footpod Yes
Suunto Ambit3 Peak Review 2014 7.9 2.9 30 29 (round) (661mm2) 128 diameter (12.9K total) Good (100m) Yes Internal/Footpod Yes
Suunto Spartan Ultra Review 2016 7.1 2.7 38 32 (round) (804mm2) 320 diameter (80.4K total) Good (100m) Yes Internal (Limited Footpod) Yes
Garmin Fenix 2 Review 2014 5.7 3.2 32 31 (round) (755mm2) 70 diameter (3.8K total) Good (50m) Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Suunto Ambit3 Run Review 2014 7.9 2.5 30 29 (round) (661mm2) 128 x 128 (16.4K total) Good (50m) Yes Internal/Footpod Yes
Suunto Ambit2 R Review 2013 7.6 2.5 30 29 (round) (661mm2) 128 diameter (12.9K total) Good (50m) Yes Internal/Footpod Yes
Garmin 235 Review 2015 4.9 1.5 19 31 (round) (755mm2) 215 diameter (36.3K total) Good (50m) Yes (+OHRM) Internal/Footpod Yes
Garmin 620 Review 2013 7.1 1.5 20 25.4 (round) (507mm2) 180 diameter (25.4K total) Good (50m) Yes Internal/Footpod/Heart Rate Monitor/Alert Yes
Garmin 910XT Review 2011 7.5 2.5 49 33 x 20 (660mm2) 160 x 100 (16K total) Good (50m) Yes Footpod/Alert Yes
Garmin 310XT Review 2009 7.5 2.5 63 33 x 20 (660mm2) 160 x 100 (16K total) Good (50m) Yes Footpod Yes
Garmin 225 Review 2015 6.2 1.5 24 25.4 (round) (507mm2) 180 diameter (25.4K total) Good (50m) Yes (+OHRM) Internal/Footpod Yes
TomTom Cardio Runner Review 2015 6.0 2.2 30 22 x 25 (550mm2) 144 x 168 (24.2K total) Good (50m) Yes (+OHRM) Internal/Footpod Yes
Polar V800 Review 2014 8.0 2.8 31 23 x 23 (529mm2) 128 x 128 (16.4K total) Good (30m) Yes Internal/Footpod Yes
Polar M430 Review 2017 7.2 2.0 24 23 x 23 (529mm2) 128 x 128 (16.4K total) Good (50m) Yes (+OHRM) Internal/Footpod Yes
Polar M400 Review 2014 6.6 2.0 24 23 x 23 (529mm2) 128 x 128 (16.4K total) Good (30m) Yes Internal/Footpod Yes
Garmin 610 Review 2011 7.3 2.5 41 25.4 (round) (507mm2) 128 diameter (12.9K total) Fair (IPX7) Yes Footpod/Alert Yes
Leikr Review 2013 7.3 2.4 25 41 x 31 (1271mm2) 206 x 148 (76.8K total) Fair (IPX6) Yes Footpod Limited
Epson SF-510 Review 2015 4.4 1.7 24 28 x 22 (616mm2) 128 x 96 (12.3K total) Good (50m) Yes Limited Internal Limited
Epson SF-810 Review 2015 5.5 1.8 28 28 (round) (616mm2) 128 diameter (12.9K total) Good (50m) OHRM Only) Limited Internal Limited
Garmin 10 Review 2012 3.8 1.3 33 25 x 24 (600mm2) 55 x 32 (1.8K total) Good (50m) No No Yes



Review

Battery
Life (hr)
Tested Battery
Life (hr)
Extended
Battery
Life (hr)
Charge On The Run? Training
Effect
HRV GPS cache Sensors
Garmin Epix Review 24 17.6 50 Yes (with USB=Garmin) Yes Record Yes Ant+
Garmin Fenix 5X Review 20 23 35 Yes, but can't be worn Yes Record Yes Bluetooth/Ant+
Garmin Fenix 3 Review 20 22 50 Yes (with USB=Garmin) Yes No Yes Ant+
Garmin 935 Review 24 24.5 60 Yes, but can't be worn Yes Record Yes Bluetooth/Ant+
Garmin Vivoactive HR Review 13 13 Yes (with USB=Garmin) No No Yes Ant+
Garmin 920XT Review 24 19 40 No (terminates) Yes Record Yes Ant+
Garmin Vivoactive 3 Review 13 13 No Yes Bluetooth/Ant+
Garmin Vivoactive Review 10 10 10 Yes (with USB=Garmin) No No Yes Ant+
Suunto Spartan Trainer Review 10 11 30 Yes Yes No Yes Bluetooth
Suunto Ambit2 Review 15 50 Yes Yes Record Yes Ant+
Suunto Ambit3 Peak Review 20 100 Yes Yes Record Yes Bluetooth
Suunto Spartan Ultra Review 18 17 26 Yes, but can't be worn Yes Record Yes Bluetooth
Garmin Fenix 2 Review 15 50 Yes (with USB=Garmin) Yes No Yes Ant+
Suunto Ambit3 Run Review 10 10.5 100 Yes Yes Record Yes Bluetooth
Suunto Ambit2 R Review 8 7.3 25 Yes Yes Record Yes Ant+
Garmin 235 Review 11 11 Yes, but no optical HR Yes No Yes Ant+
Garmin 620 Review 10 10 No (resets) Yes Record Yes Ant+
Garmin 910XT Review 20 20 Yes, but no display Yes Record No Ant+
Garmin 310XT Review 20 20 Yes, but no display No No No Ant+
Garmin 225 Review 10 11 10 No (resets) No No Yes Ant+
TomTom Cardio Runner Review 8 6.3 8 No (resets) No No Yes Bluetooth HR
Polar V800 Review 13 24 50 No (terminates) Yes Display Predictive Bluetooth
Polar M430 Review 8 8 8 No No No Yes Bluetooth
Polar M400 Review 8 8 Yes, but can't be worn No No No Bluetooth
Garmin 610 Review 8 8 Yes, but no display Yes Record No Ant+
Leikr Review 5 6.5 5 Yes, but can't be worn No No Yes (few hours) Ant+
Epson SF-510 Review 30 30 30 No No No Yes (few hours) Bluetooth HR
Epson SF-810 Review 20 26 20 No No No Yes (few hours) None
Garmin 10 Review 5 5 No No No No None

7 Navigation Features

Review

Color Maps Breadcrumbs Courses To Waypoint Compass Reverse course Beeline to start Connect IQ Altimeter
Garmin Epix Review Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes
Garmin Fenix 5X Review Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes
Garmin Fenix 3 Review No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes
Garmin 935 Review No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes
Garmin Vivoactive HR Review No No No No No No No Yes Yes
Garmin 920XT Review No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes
Garmin Vivoactive 3 Review No No No No No No No No No
Garmin Vivoactive Review No No No No No No Yes Yes No
Suunto Spartan Trainer Review No No No No No No Yes No No
Suunto Ambit2 Review No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Suunto Ambit3 Peak Review No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Suunto Spartan Ultra Review No Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes
Garmin Fenix 2 Review No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes
Suunto Ambit3 Run Review No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Suunto Ambit2 R Review No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Garmin 235 Review No No No No No No Yes Yes No
Garmin 620 Review No No No No No No No No No
Garmin 910XT Review No Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes No Yes
Garmin 310XT Review No Yes Yes Yes No Yes No No No
Garmin 225 Review No No No No No No No No No
TomTom Cardio Runner Review No No No No No No No No No
Polar V800 Review No No Yes No No No Yes No Yes
Polar M430 Review No No No No No No Yes No No
Polar M400 Review No No No No No No Yes No No
Garmin 610 Review No No Yes Yes No No Yes No No
Leikr Review Yes Yes Yes No No No No No No
Epson SF-510 Review No No No No No No No No No
Epson SF-810 Review No No No No No No No No No
Garmin 10 Review No No No No No No No No No

For "navigation":

  • Color Maps gives you full color maps, rather like a smart phone, with roads and paths marked out.
  • Track Outline is a display of where you've run, rather like a breadcrumb trail. If there are maps, the outline is superimposed otherwise this is just the outline on its own without any context.
  • Course Outline is an outline of a route that can be downloaded. I've found this useful during ultras or in unfamiliar cities where I've needed to know where to go.
  • Back To Start is a simple arrow point to your starting point, so it won't help you backtrack.
  • Back To Waypoint returns you to a previously marked location using a simple arrow to point.
  • Compass. A magnetic compass can help you orient yourself or the map. Without a magnetic compass you have to be moving for the GPS to give you a sense of direction.


(Older Reviews: Polar RC3 GPS, Soleus 1.0, Motorola Motoactv.)