Garmin Fenix (2013)

When it comes to GPS watches, Garmin was there first – so you could expect its latest offering to be at the sharp edge of design and innovation. The Fenix is a little bit more brutal-looking than the similarly loaded Suunto Ambit2, but whether this is a good or bad thing depends entirely on personal taste, as both watches are surprisingly pleasant to wear. Both are also extremely advanced outdoor tools, with fully functional GPS systems, rechargeable batteries and a stack of ‘standard’ features like a barometer, altimeter, digital compass and heart rate monitor compatibility. In terms of out-of-the-box intuitive usability and battery life (50 hours in GPS mode, versus 20 hours for the Suunto) as well as the ability to transfer routes and waypoints wirelessly, the Garmin Fenix has the edge; whereas the Suunto’s superior range of sports functions and the ability to take specialised apps make it a more versatile tool for multisport users. 

Price £350 (heart rate monitor sold separately)
Type digital, rechargeable
Weight 85g
Water resistance 100m

Review by Simon Ingram
First published in Trail magazine October 2013