Over the years, Garmin has come up with several high-end smartwatches that have made fitness enthusiasts splurge money without a thought. With Epix Gen 2, Garmin has taken things a little further as the smartwatch carries a heavy price tag but at the same time brings a performance-heavy smartwatch with the company's best display so far.
I have used Forerunner 245, Forerunner 245 Music, Forerunner 45, Forerunner 55, and Venu Sq so far and have tried Fenix 6s for a couple of weeks and a jump to Epix Gen 2 is quite a long one but then you start noticing the details and features crucial if you take fitness seriously.
Coming back to Garmin Epix Gen 2, the smartwatch costs a whopping Rs 1 lakh, which is way too much for a fitness wearable and that makes it a product only for those into serious fitness and at the same time, can afford to pay this much.
That said, I used the smartwatch for close to two months and used it almost every day for running, fitness sessions, and walking to see how it fares in the long term and I'll be talking about that in this review.
Garmin Epix Gen 2: Design and build
The Epix Gen 2 features a 1.3-inch AMOLED screen (416x416 pixels) with a 47mm case size with a 14.5 thickness. This comes with a 22mm-wide strap and the watch looks really heavy but weighs around 50 gm which is decent enough.
The display is by far the best from Garmin; it's finally brighter, crispier, and colourful, and the touch response is pretty quick and smooth in daily use.
Garmin watches with a screen this good has been a wish for many for all these years, especially when Apple and others have been setting the benchmark way too high.
Their display is visible even under direct sunlight so you hardly struggle to read anything when you're outdoors.
The overall design is pretty similar to what we have seen in the Fenix series but the Epix Gen 2 is chunkier and will look well if your wrist size is large, the watch is slightly on the heavier side but it's comfortable for all-day use but for sleep tracking, it will take some days for you to get used to sleeping wearing this big smartwatch.
There are five familiar buttons if you've used a Garmin before, it won't take time for you to get used to the navigation. Besides, it's a touch display so you can easily navigate from one screen to another.
The sapphire glass and titanium bezel make it look really attractive and add more toughness.
There are two versions of the watch -- Sapphire Black Titanium (Rs 99,990) and Slate Steel (Rs 89,990).
Garmin Epix Gen 2: Battery life
The Epix Gen 2 lasts for about a week on a full charge and this may sound too less but smartwatches with AMOLED screen fare even less than that and from that point of you, this is pretty impressive more so because this on-battery time includes 4-5 days of activity tracking as well.
However, this is way less than what the Fenix series offers you. So yes, with a good display, you would have to compromise on battery time but it isn't as bad as in the case of some other fancy smartwatches out there.
The Epix Gen 2 can last for about two weeks in standard smartwatch mode with everyday fitness tracking, notifications, etc.
That said, I used the watch almost every day for some fitness activity or that other, at times I used to twice in a day alongside the regular use. So, an almost 6-7 days of on-battery time with the use of almost all features looked pretty decent in my case.
Garmin Epix Gen 2: Features and performance
There is pretty much every feature you can expect from a dedicated high-end fitness smartwatch but at the same time, there is a key noteworthy feature that you get on Apple and other smartwatches that are missing here.
That said, this watch is geared more towards fitness and then you have the lifestyle features on it so it may not be appealing to those looking for a lifestyle watch.
For example, you can't reply to notifications or take calls using the watch, which other high-end smartwatches offer.
However, Garmin Epix Gen 2 is at par with any premium smartwatch dedicated to fitness. Although you have pretty much everything the Fenix series can offer, the AMOLED touch display is one excellent addition to the whole mix.
I used the watch for over a month for several workouts, including running, cycling, weight workouts, and even HIIT, it tracks all your fitness metrics.
The estimated recovery time the watch shows after every workout is usually accurate. The Spo2, hydration, sleep, stress, temperature, heart rate, and step counter are highly efficient in tracking all the data.
The watch has Garmin’s latest stamina monitoring and improved GNSS location technology with “multi-band GPS”.
It also has Garmin Pay for contactless payments but I never got the chance to use it.
Garmin Epix Gen 2: Verdict
There is not much you won't like about the watch as it fits almost everywhere -- as a lifestyle watch and as a dedicated fitness watch.
The battery easily lasts for 6-7 days even after tracking several activities, so that's an impressive point. The watch is really sturdy, the glass is really strong as it did accidentally hit rough surfaces while I was using it but there was no sign of damage anywhere.
However, I felt there are some notable downsides too if you're spending nearly Rs 1 lakh on a smartwatch. From a value perspective, I felt a mic to take calls would have been a good addition. You can't even reply to messages so that will pinch many, also, the third-party apps aren't too attractive and efficient.
But then you have a GPS smartwatch that tracks pretty much every metric with high accuracy and the Garmin Connect App is a treasure for those who take fitness seriously.
I would say the Fenix series is any day a better option if you are looking for something more about value, but the Garmin Epix Gen 2 has its own charm and you do realise that once you use the watch for some time. It's indeed one of the finest premium smartwatches money can buy.