Smart watch for workouts/trekking

A.Bennett

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Hey guys. I'm looking at GPS smart watches. Didn't realize there are so many options. Trying to stay sub 400. GPS, alto, baro, Compass and being able to keep pace are the biggest functions. I need it for back woods hiking, matches like mammoth to make sure my pace is where is should be and general every day use. Looking at the suunto traverse and traversa alpha. The new Fitbit. There's a Garmin's I've heard people mention. Any suggestions?
 

dirthead1

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I have a Garmin Forerunner 235 and really like it. I use it when hiking to keep time, pace, mileage, altitude, etc. It's very easy to use and the battery life is great when using only as a watch. It's easily customizable with downloadable faces and apps. I have not tried any of the others, so can't offer a comparison.
 

Nap Mag

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I have a Garmin Fenix 3 which I’ve worn since 2016. Feature rich and rugged - was integral during training for Mammoth. More expensive models out nowadays but the Fenix 3 still checks all the boxes. You can even download the TruFlite ballistics calculator app from the Garmin store - gives you elevation and windage which are surprisingly accurate (although I forget how many gun profiles you can save). I’ve used it as a backup when my Kestrel 5700 is not around.
 

A.Bennett

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Suunto traverse alpha... great watch, really simple, great customer service
This is the one I'm leaning towards. It has outstanding reviews. is it lacking anywhere that matters?
 

missed

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I have been waiting for my Fitbit to die then upgrade to full smart watch myself. The Garmin Forerunner and instinct looks pretty good.
 

Runnineh

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I haven't noticed any shortfalls with the traverse. I've done a couple 5 day hikes, summited 2 mountains, use it for setting targets in the desert, use the gps for work, as well the altimeter. Is great, you won't regret it.
 

lowlight

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depends what you want to do, one includes a heartbeat sensor on the watch the other does not, otherwise they are only different in size and weight.

I wear the Bravo on the range, and the Instinct everywhere else
 

A.Bennett

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depends what you want to do, one includes a heartbeat sensor on the watch the other does not, otherwise they are only different in size and weight.

I wear the Bravo on the range, and the Instinct everywhere else
It's mostly for back woods hiking, but I'll use it for pace at mammoth and for general outdoor activities. Itll be an everyday wear thing. Really could go either way on the heartbeat monitor. It's not a feature I'll use probably.
 

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After my research today and seeing what lowlight said I'm leaning to the Instinct tactical.
 

A.Bennett

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After my research today and seeing what lowlight said I'm leaning to the Instinct tactical.
That's what I'm thinking as well. Looks like it checks all the boxes
 

A.Bennett

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Garmin just launched the new Fenix 6 line. You may be able to find deals on a Fenix 5 right now.
I haven't looked into the fenix line. How's it compare to the instinct? I can look at the stats but prefer real world experience if it's available lol
 

A.Bennett

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Yeah lol that's a touch out of my price range I think. I'd pay it. Talking the wife into letting me pay it is a whole new problem lol.
 

Crabcore

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I haven't looked into the fenix line. How's it compare to the instinct? I can look at the stats but prefer real world experience if it's available lol
i don't own a Fenix 5 personally, but quite a few of my running friends do. I do not hear many complaints. Most of my friends are marathon runners, and have logged thousands of miles with them and wear them all day every day.

I personally wear a 920xt or 245, depending on what i am doing.

for a really good review of all of these devices, check out dcrainmker.com He is the foremost authority on sports tech.
 

TACC

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there is a Mil version of the Instinct might be a good compromise... the Instinct is lighter by a wide margin
How has the battery life been on the Instinct? I was concerned that it had to be charged very often, especially if the GPS functions were being used frequently.
 

A.Bennett

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How has the battery life been on the Instinct? I was concerned that it had to be charged very often, especially if the GPS functions were being used frequently.
15 hrs I believe with the gps on highest setting if I read right. That's according to the website. So no real experience.
 

A.Bennett

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i don't own a Fenix 5 personally, but quite a few of my running friends do. I do not hear many complaints. Most of my friends are marathon runners, and have logged thousands of miles with them and wear them all day every day.

I personally wear a 920xt or 245, depending on what i am doing.

for a really good review of all of these devices, check out dcrainmker.com He is the foremost authority on sports tech.
I'll look into it. I didn't realize there are so many options.
 

TampaBud

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Couple of things to consider here: Battery life, GPS, Trek Modules, back light, comfort & HR. i've got 2 Suunto watches, 1 being the Traverse. Great watch, solid bezel, HR function and GPS work pretty well. Programming it (or adding free programs from MovesCount is not easy). Active GPS if moving will draining most watches pretty quick. I happen to keep a charger near my desk and hook it up every couple of days. I did a lot of research this past summer on HR monitors on watches - anything on the wrist is not terribly accurate. Chest straps are by far the most accurate.

I like the Traverse for hunting with the shot indicator, GPS and red backlight. Nato band is comfortable. I did break the area where the pin goes into the watch, sent it to Suunto and they had it back within a week. The ap and/or program online for the Traverse is pretty cool. If you haven't seen an example, check it out. Tons of content and work out tracking.

I looked at the Fenix 5 and it was a bit salty for my taste but have a large group of triathletes in Tampa that swear by it. Like many have said, it will just come down to price and desired functions for usage. Like when buying a scope, go with last years version. I'd also go try them all on and see what fits your wrist the best.
 

A.Bennett

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The Bravo Tactix is just a blacked-out "tactical" Fenix 5...
You have any complaints with your instinct? I think I've settled on it or the suunto traverse. But I'm hearing the Garmin is easier to work with
 

lowlight

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No, the Instinct is actually pretty awesome, I might get a second and replace the Bravo because of the size, weight, and features.

The Bravo is a couple of years old, well used, and I dig it, the Instinct is new and I am baby-ing it a bit because I didn't get it for the field, more walking around, casual wear but I like the size and weight and features better, plus it appears the battery is a touch better, and the Bravo is great battery wise.

I can charge it before a trip, even the 10-day Alaskan ones and it's still got 25% when I get home, the Instinct has even better battery life it appears to me.
 

EchoDeltaSierra

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I'm pretty surprised the Apple Watch isn't being talked about and that @lowlight isn't wearing one. I've worn one since the first edition released. In it's current iteration, it does heart rate, workouts with 1st party apps and a wide variety of 3rd party stuff (e.g. Strava), and one of the cool new software features is noise level measurements. I've beat the snot out of my Apple Watches over the years and not had one fail on me yet.
 

MPHReallyRightStuff

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Love my Fenix 5 Sapphire! Wore it through the last 3 deployments I did. I can only remember it shutting off once due to overheating while running the base loop. It would still record data but screen went into survival mode in the hottest part of the summer in the direct sunlight.

I use it with all the apps I have for golfing, mountain-biking, running, and hiking. I really like the heartbeat monitor and the Garmin connect app on the phone. I can track my sleep and it helps me figure out how to get better sleep, at the same time it can log your stress patterns. So i can try to take lunch around those high times and lower any stress or work issues I am having.

Pretty cool that you can change the face into really anything you want, any style, you can add your own pictures to the image.

When this one dies (if ever), I will buy another. Get the Sapphire glass upgrade, it'll help to not scratch it as much. Crashing on a bike over and over is my biggest reason for needing the more resistant type.

Forgot to mention the straps switch out immediate and is an awesome feature. I have metal link for going to nice places or a leather one, and I have the rubber one for all the activities.
 
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EchoDeltaSierra

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I have an Apple watch, I am okay with it, the battery is nowhere near these ... the Garmin's smoke the Apple watch, just the watch has more connections to the phone.
The battery does need feeding and I charge daily plus usually carry one these. And, it's from such a good company in your neighborhood.

 

ChadL

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Love my Fenix 5 Sapphire! Wore it through the last 3 deployments I did. I can only remember it shutting off once due to overheating while running the base loop. It would still record data but screen went into survival mode in the hottest part of the summer in the direct sunlight.

I use it with all the apps I have for golfing, mountain-biking, running, and hiking. I really like the heartbeat monitor and the Garmin connect app on the phone. I can track my sleep and it helps me figure out how to get better sleep, at the same time it can log your stress patterns. So i can try to take lunch around those high times and lower any stress or work issues I am having.

Pretty cool that you can change the face into really anything you want, any style, you can add your own pictures to the image.

When this one dies (if ever), I will buy another. Get the Sapphire glass upgrade, it'll help to not scratch it as much. Crashing on a bike over and over is my biggest reason for needing the more resistant type.

Forgot to mention the straps switch out immediate and is an awesome feature. I have metal link for going to nice places or a leather one, and I have the rubber one for all the activities.
I've been looking at the Fenix 5 line pretty hard. Primarily because I can use this watch for golf too. I have the garmin TruSwing and this watch works with that sensor. That on top of everything else makes it ideal for me.
 

zeroforhire

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I have had good luck with the garmin vivoactive 3. It isn't as rugged as some, but it won't die on me.