Garmin Doubles Down With New Additions to the Fenix and Epix Smartwatch Lines

The rugged GPS smartwatch juggernaut just keeps ‘em coming.

byHank O'Hop|
New Garmin Fenix and Epix Watches


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It’s a surprise to no one that a few of the staffers here are fans of Garmin. No, not because of some behind-the-scenes palm-scratching deals. We like Garmin because we use Garmin. Whether we're wrenching on homemade machines, getting lost in the woods, or even a little bit of both, Garmin goes with us. 

Put simply, Garmin makes stuff that actually holds up. It doesn't just claim to and then send cheap pieces of junk packed with fancy widgets out into the world. Its gear is hardy and is packed with all the features you’d expect to find in the latest tech.

In the case of smartwatches, Garmin's got a lot for you to work with. Everything from budget-friendly bruisers to high-end flagships. As of this morning, two new heavyweights have joined the lineup. Garmin's leading lines just got a little bigger with the launch of the Fenix 7 Pro Series and Epix Pro Series. 


Fenix 7 Pro Series 

The Fenix 7 is a favorite for athletes of all types with a particular edge in outdoor fitness. It's designed not only to handle but to track virtually everything one could tackle in that realm. From hiking and riding bikes to mountain and rock climbing, the Fenix aims to cover it all. The newest addition to the line, the Fenix 7 Pro Series, is built to deliver even more with several new features packed into the fitness favorite. 


Its function as a GPS watch is bolstered with new Up Ahead weather map overlay and relief shading features. Between getting a heads up on incoming points of interest, enhanced topographic maps, and upcoming weather conditions, you can better plan the routing and participation in certain outdoor treks. Yes, solar charging is part of the deal and can deliver hundreds of hours of battery life.

The Fenix 7 Pro Series also comes with an updated heart-rate sensor for improved performance tracking, the addition of Endurance Score and Hill Score functions, and a few new preloaded activities it can track. Among those new activities are motocross, overlanding, and white water rafting.


Aside from software updates, a few welcomed updates to the Fenix's exterior are part of the party. The first and most notable is that it comes in three sizes: 42mm, 47mm, and 51mm. All three sizes are available today with a suggested starting price of $799.99.

The variable sizes are matched with an updated MIP to guarantee a killer display. Lastly, is the addition of a built-in LED flashlight that can come in handy when searching for something in dark places or when letting others know where you are in poor-visibility conditions. 

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Epix Pro Series

For those Epix users, don’t worry, the Epix Pro Series was updated with that built-in LED flashlight, too. That's not all that's been added to create what Garmin's calling its most capable smartwatch yet. 


That claim is backed by the addition of dozens of new preloaded activities, the aforementioned Up Ahead function, an updated heart-rate sensor, relief shading, and new weather map overlays. The Epix Pro Series also comes with the new Red Shift mode. This softens the AMOLED display with red tones when the user transitions to darker environments. This makes the display easier on the eyes and may even reduce sleep cycle disturbances. 


The Epix Pro Series is also available in three sizes. Customers get to choose from 42mm, 47mm, and 51mm faces with a suggested starting price of $899.99. 

That might seem like a relatively short list of updates in comparison to what the  Fenix 7 Pro Series is launching with, but the foundation does sit just a little higher. The Epix series is a premium line built to shine in all situations. It's crafted with titanium and sapphire, which are just as tough as they are pretty. Clearly, the Epix Pro targets the athletic type who must put that emphasis on appearances. 

Garmin for Every Situation

Either of these watches is a fine choice, but they aren't all that Garmin's been busy with. A few months back, it dropped the Instinct 2X Solar, which I've had the opportunity to wear while getting all kinds of dirty both inside and outside of the garage. 

Instinct Solar 2X Hank O'Hop

Take a look at my initial impressions if you need something rugged but a little more economical. And stay tuned for my upcoming in-depth review, where I'll fill you in on the nitty-gritty of the tough GPS smartwatch.