Garmin Fenix 3$499
Ease of use8/10
GPS tracking features9/10
- GPS+GLONASS for faster fix
- New Sapphire Lens
- 1.2” sunlight-readable Display
- Connect IQ
- Stylish, rugged design
- Recovery Advisor takes a while to adjust to your fitness level.
- Basic instructions provided, researching online will be required to get more advanced details.
Best Outdoor GPS Sport Watch Review
Rise above your limits with the new Fenix 3 GPS sport watch for demanding athletes and outdoor adventurers.
Garmin Fenix 3 is the latest outdoor smartwatch from the leading wearable GPS technology company. Fenix 3 boasts a wealth of fitness and outdoor training features not seen before, packed into just one device. This smartwatch should appeal to trail and ultra runners, triathletes, cyclists and mountaineers alike, anyone looking for an outdoor GPS watch to track their activities, help them train or navigate harsh terrain.
- Easily customized with downloadable data screens and watch faces from Connect IQ
- Wireless sync with Garmin Connect fitness/training app
- Data tracking for a range of multi sports
- Waterproof to 100 meters
- Rugged good looks and stylish
- Version with Sapphire screen is expensive
- Large masculine/chunky design
Garmin Fenix 3 Design & Style Review
There’s no escaping that Garmin Fenix 3 is a large smartwatch, yet it is still an improvement on the previous Fenix 2 which wouldn’t fit under your shirt sleeve due to the bulky design. However it more than makes up for it size with stunning good looks and supreme build quality, making for one good looking watch.
Read authentic Garmin customer reviews for the Fenix 3 before buying:
There are 3 versions available, an expensive, premium Sapphire version with genuine crystal lens for extra strength and increased scratch resistance, or the cheaper Silver with red band and silver face and Grey with black band.
Both of these standard versions have a mineral glass lens which is also hard wearing and scratch-resistant. Sapphire version comes with a heavier metal strap which is also available to purchase separately, although the lighter version should prove better for running and fitness activities.
The Garmin Fenix 3 looks stunning, and can be worn just as easily with your office suit as with your running gear.
Garmin Fenix 3 screen size hasn’t changed from the earlier version but it does now come with a color Chroma display and increased pixels (218×218) for improved clarity in all light conditions. The large watch faces, design and style are appealing to the full-time business professional, who exchanges the suit for adventure gear in their spare time.
Premium materials, a rugged aesthetic and smartwatch capabilities make Fenix 3 the perfect watch for someone who lives a rigorous lifestyle. Designed to handle even the most rugged conditions, Fenix 3 provides comprehensive multisport features[/easyazon_link] that can be fully customized to the user, making it easy to transition into everyday activities.
Garmin Fenix 3 breaks the mold from other multi-sport watches including the Forerunner 920XT, which is clearly a sport watch (available in black/blue or white/red). The 920XT does have a slight weight advantage, weighing in at just 61g compared to Fenix 3 (Sapphire) at 92g. Despite the weight you’ll soon get used to Fenix after a few days, it feels balanced and natural on your wrist.
Long Battery Life
Ultra-runners will appreciate the Fenix 3 long battery life of up to 20 hours in GPS mode and up to 50 hours using UltraTrac mode. UltraTrac decreases the update rate of GPS data received which saves on battery life, also useful on a long hike. You’ll get 6 weeks from Fenix 3 in just normal watch mode. USB and mains charger are included in the box.
The stylish, smart multi sports GPS/GLONASS Fenix 3 watch offers feature sets for fitness training and outdoor navigation, plus a new EXO antenna for faster fixes and accuracy.
Fitness and Training Features
Fenix 3 is perfect for multi-sports and triathlons. It packs in all the features found in the Forerunner 920XT and advanced 620:
When paired with HRM-Run chest strap, Fenix 3 gives feedback on Cadence (steps per minute), Vertical Oscillation (bounce when running) and Ground Contact Time. Essential running data is also included; time, distance, pace, calories, speed, lap data, and heart rate. You can also check your VO2 max (fitness level).
Swimming & Cycling
Garmin Fenix 3 can be worn for swimming in the pool or open water, calculating your SWOLF score, strokes per minute, distance and pace. Connect to a power meter to receive cycling data.
Daily Activity Tracking
To help you stay active during the day new activity tracking is available. The move bar signals when you’ve been inactive for too long and encourages you to move. Count your steps, calories, distance and monitor sleep movement at night.
Ski / Board Mode
Use on Garmin Fenix 3 on the slopes to measure 3D speed, distance, time, runs and auto run detection. It also features ski specific data pages, history of runs with performance data.
For the technical part, Fenix 3 has GPS + GLONASS which gives a faster satellite fix for improved accuracy. GLONASS is an alternative navigation system with global coverage. Manufacturers of GPS devices such as Garmin say that adding GLONASS has made more satellites available to their devices, positions can be fixed with speed and accuracy. Particularly useful in situations when a normal GPS fix may be obscured.
Using GLONASS during a city marathon (Boston, London etc) will give improved accuracy when amongst 1000’s of other runners trying to receive a GPS signal.
See what Fenix 3 customers are saying, read unbiased reviews and check product ratings.
GLONASS is received by a new Exo Antenna on the surface of the watch. Garmin quality navigation and tracking functionalities give clear guidance on the map page. So you can always find your way back thanks to TracBack navigation. Garmin Fenix 3 also comes with ABC sensors and Autocalibration so you can easily get elevation and barometric pressure readings, it also has a 3-axis electronic compass.
Want more feature details? Compare the Fenix 3, Fenix 2 and Epix outdoor watches.
Fenix 3 Image Gallery:
Garmin Fenix 3 Review | Key Features:
- Stainless Steel EXO antenna with GPS + GLONASS Support for fast fix and accuracy
- Sunlight readable color Chroma display
- Altimeter, barometer and 3-axis compass with auto calibration
- Classic Garmin outdoor features like Waypoint/Route/Track navigation including TracBack
- Fitness training features including: VO2 max, Running Dynamics, Recovery Advisor and more
- Trail/Running functions: Auto-climb/ run detector and vertical speed
- Battery performance – Rechargeable; up-to 20 hrs GPS mode, up-to 50 hrs UltraTrac GPS mode, and 6 weeks in watch mode
- Water rated to 100 meters (10 ATM)
- Swimming Functions: distance, pace, stroke count/rate, SWOLF score (pool/open water), log drills
- Cycling Functions: full Vector support, gradient data, bike profile, compatible with optional sensors for speed, cadence and heart rate
- Smart features like Smart Notification and Connect IQ App support for further customization
- Connected features; uploads to Garmin Connect for live tracking and sharing
- Use as activity tracker (Step counting, calories, distance throughout the day, stay active with move bar, track sleep)
Fenix 3 – Best Outdoor GPS Watch Review Summary
Garmin Fenix 3 is the best outdoor GPS watch Garmin have produced to date. It has stunning good looks and all the features you’ll ever need for tracking sport and outdoor activities. With added GPS + GLONASS it will help navigate you on the trail and record essential data you need on your run, swim or bike. If you’re looking for a stylish smartwatch you can wear daily then buy the Fenix 3, you’ll be the envy of your training buddies.