- 1.4” GPS touchscreen on your wrist
- Preloaded mapping with options to add
- Advanced fitness and training features
- Free 1 year Garmin map subscription
- Rugged design
- Doesn’t have a regular watch design
Garmin have shaped themselves into the market leaders in GPS technology. They now have innovative GPS watches available for every outdoor sport imaginable, from mountaineering, trail running and hiking to camping, hunting and geocaching, even back country skiing. Whatever your sport, there is a Garmin GPS watch to help navigate and track your activity.
Garmin Epix Review – GPS Touchscreen Watch with Outdoor Maps
Garmin are the industry leaders in wearable GPS technology for a range of sport and fitness activities, announcing their latest wearable line up at the annual 2015 Consumer Electronics Show in January. These announcements included the Epix as well as Fenix 3 and Vivoactive GPS smartwatch.
These products highlight Garmin’s intentions to continue growth in wearable technology, offsetting a trending decline in other markets such as automotive PND. Fenix 3 is a stunning watch packed with sport and fitness features, intended for everyday use and can easily worn to the office.
Epix whilst still containing fitness and training features, comes with a worldwide shaded relief basemap for advanced outdoor navigation. Epix and Fenix 3 are both designed for extreme outdoor environments. Garmin Vivoactive is a lightweight GPS smartwatch with downloadable sport apps and designed to compete with the Apple Watch.
Garmin Epix Summary
Epix is the first hands-free Garmin navigator offering high resolution color touchscreen and preloaded mapping right on your wrist. Epix is packed with high-end navigation features such as GPS and GLONASS supported by innovative EXO antenna technology, barometer, auto-calibrating altimeter and electronic 3-axis compass plus full-color maps that let you not only track where you’ve been, but also plan for what’s ahead of you. Epix is also a smart watch: it supports LiveTrack, Smart Notifications and Connect IQ Apps for further customization.
Garmin Epix Review | Key Features
- Large 1.4″ high resolution Chroma color touchscreen
- Preloaded mapping (TOPO 100K available), ability to add more detailed maps
- GPS + GLONASS (fast satellite fix and improved accuracy)
- Connect IQ allows you to customize your watch face, add widgets, new data fields
- Turn by turn navigation on roads when using TOPO maps or City Navigator Garmin maps
- Long battery life – 24 hours in GPS mode, 50 hours UltraTrac mode, and 16 weeks watch mode (depends on settings)
- Barometric altimeter (elevation and barometric pressure) and 3-axis electronic compass with auto calibration (GPS)
- Record the track your on with TracBack feature, also allows you to navigate back to your starting point
- Keep an eye on the weather conditions by using the barometric altimeter to plot barometric pressure over time
- Sight’N Go allows navigation to a location that is within sight, but not immediately accessible due to terrain.
- Easy and quick access to multiple activities, such as hiking, navigation, cycling, running, mountaineering, skiing, swimming, indoor workouts and more.
- Water rated up to 5 ATM/50 meters; suitable for use in water related sports and activities.
- Automatically uploads data wirelessly to Garmin Connect, LiveTrack and social media (using Garmin Connect Mobile app on smartphone), plus features Smart Notification so you can receive emails, texts and alerts directly on your watch.
- Pair with optional ANT+ sensors, such as heart rate monitors (including HRM-Run), tempe temperature sensor and speed/cadence
- Includes vibration alerts, tones, timer, stopwatch, alarm and world clock with automatic time zone calibration and the ability to display several time zones at once.
Touchscreen Mapping on Your Wrist with Garmin Epix
Garmin Epix is the first high resolution, color touchscreen GPS mapping watch. There are several versions available depending on your map preferences: Worldwide Shaded Relief / US TOPO 100K / TOPO Canada and TOPO Europe for our friends on the other side of the pond. As the Epix has 8GB of internal memory you can easily add more maps.
Garmin maps are the best in the business and feature details such as forests, terrain, elevation, lakes and points of interest – now there’s no excuse for getting lost on the trail. Epix also comes with a 1 year free subscription to BirdsEye Satellite Imagery which is easy to download using the Garmin BaseCamp software – a unique selling point. Other maps available include City Navigator and BlueChart marine maps.
Epix Rugged Design and Looks
Epix has a square screen (see comparison chart) in order to help support the touchscreen mapping. Epix is not designed to be an everyday activity tracker watch or style statement in comparison to the Fenix 3. Garmin are targeting Epix to a very specific set of customers, it’s an adventure watch for outdoor navigation enthusiasts. The design is rugged with a mineral glass lens and PVD-coated surfaces, Epix can be handled roughly and will withstand harsh conditions and environments.
Wirelessly Sync Epix with your Smartphone
Another useful feature seen across many of Garmin’s wearables are ‘smart notifications’. You can receive smartphone alerts via the watch when it’s paired with your smartphone. Epix and Fenix 3 are both similar to the Garmin Vivosmart activity tracker/fitness band in this sense – when your phone receives a text, email or alert, they will display the alert on screen.
Smart notifications are very useful when running or taking part in an activity when your phone is strapped to your arm or buried in a rucksack, now when you receive an alert one quick glance at the watch to see what the alert is, and if you need to take further action. You can scroll through the alerts on the screen but unfortunately can’t delete or respond via the watch.
Customize Epix and Download Apps
Connect IQ is the new Garmin app store for it’s latest range of fitness and outdoor GPS watches. Developers are able to design and build new interfaces and submit them into the app store for customers to download, this really is a smart move by Garmin and sets them apart from other competitors. You’ll be able to login and customize watch faces, add widgets and new data fields so you can have a unique, personalized Epix watch face design.
Garmin Connect Training with Epix
If you already own a Garmin running watch such as Forerunner or an Edge cycling computer you should be familiar with Garmin Connect, if you’re not then you’re really missing out on a great training application and not really using your Garmin GPS device to it’s full potential.
Epix wirelessly syncs to Garmin Connect automatically, once you’ve created an account and set it up. When connected you’ll be able to monitor all of your fitness and sport activities such as running, cycling or swimming. Connect shows you data from your watch including distance, pace, calories, heart rate, elevation and shows you where you’ve been on a map (with milage/KM counters).
Epix has advanced fitness training features similar to the Garmin Forerunner 620, one of the best GPS running watches available, and is perfect for runners looking to improve their form or technique. These advanced features include VO2 Max estimate which essentially shows you how fit you are compared with others, running dynamics (cadence, vertical oscillation and ground contact time), Virtual Partner is also included.
Get the best online price for the Garmin Epix Outdoor GPS watch.
Garmin Epix Review Summary
Garmin already have large range of handheld touchscreen mapping devices such as the Oregon and Dakota, now they have put the mapping available with these products in an outdoor smart watch so you can have the best of both worlds. Epix can be used to track just about every sport imaginable including indoor training, skiing, swimming, hiking, running and cycling.
If you’re an outdoor adventurer looking for hands-free navigation the Epix is ideal.