Garmin Epix 2 and Apple Watch 6 – Why I’ve binned Fenix 7 and Watch 7 for those two

Apple Watch 6 SE 3 Compass Altimeter Barometer Routes best outdoor rugged Strap weather complicationGarmin Epix 2 and Apple Watch 6 – My Current Watches

OK, I’ll admit it, I’m a sucker for a pretty screen. There, I said it.

I don’t need the battery life of the new Garmin Fenix 7 to go on week-long adventures in the Surrey wilderness because a) there is no wilderness b) I have a life, family, friends and another job and c) I own a USB battery pack.

Must Read: Garmin Epix 2 Review – The Best Ever SportsWatch

Why the Epix 2?

The standout gimmes of the Garmin Epix Gen 2 are the beautiful screen and the maxed out Garmin feature set. The multi-band/dual-frequency stuff is an interesting distraction but that’s about it. Sapphire screen tech was also a consideration.
Buy Garmin Fenix 7
Talking of sapphire: Since I bought the Apple Watch 7 Stainless Steel/Sapphire I’ve been convinced that I have a need for Sapphire-like screen durability. So when I bought the regular, non-Sapphire Fenix 7 I was somewhat concerned that I would scratch the screen. In the end, I made a few micro-scratches on its bezel. #Bizarre.

Garmin Fenix 7 rem deep Sleep stage
F7 – some very minor but annoying bezel scratches

or Why NOT the Epix 2?

Well, it’s freakishly expensive, some of my CIQ needs still aren’t met by developers (Supersapiens are stuck on Fenix 6), and it’s a bit thick and heavy for races. I have my 935 (not 945) on my desk for emergency workouts and maybe races too, although that takes about 3 minutes to respond to any button press right now but fine once an exercise is started. Those factors aside I’ll take the Epix 2 for most workouts.

More: Detailed Supersapiens Review

Why the Apple Watch 6?

Yes, you heard that right, I’ve swapped the shiny, new AW7 with my partner’s scratchy, old Apple Watch 6 and have thus effectively downgraded my wrist. My partner is extremely suspicious that I have a hidden motive for giving them the ‘better’ watch.

Rightly so, it seems a strange thing to do.

I originally bought the Watch 7 RED but it was way too red and so I sent it back and swapped it for the more expensive Apple Watch 7 45mm Stainless Steel (+LTE +Sapphire). Sapphire lived up to its promise and I didn’t scratch it at all despite wearing it a lot.

BUT

But, but, but the Watch 7 just isn’t as accurate as the Watch 6. I have spent months looking at this and have been convinced I must be deluding myself that the AW7 isn’t as accurate or that I deluded myself that the AW6 was as accurate as it was. Bottom line: after a few re-tests of the AW6, I’m not deluded. AW6 is more accurate than AW7, at least with the GPS at any rate.

Note: Obviously now I have the AW6, it means I’m first in line for September’s AW8. See! you have to think ahead with these things 😉 That said, my partner is moaning that the Watch 7 is a bit big and too heavy to wear at night. Hmm it’s 51g (vs AW6 36g) and the physical dimensions are almost identical (admittedly the screen area is quite a bit bigger due to smaller ‘bezels’)

or Why not the Apple Watch 7?

As I just said, it’s not as accurate and that makes my comparisons with other watches a bit more annoying as I’ve lost my reference point for GPS awesomeness (well….). Plus the LTE is a bit of a con in that my provider, O2, required me to get an extra data package for the AW7 as well as for my phone. I don’t mind paying money but I don’t like being conned.

Don’t worry, at some point in the future I’ll forget the moral high ground and all my principles will go to pot. I’m sometimes fickle too.

I’m hoping beyond hope that my partner will not scratch the Watch 7 and then I’ll sell it later this year. In the meantime, I have to use a scratched Watch 6, which doesn’t bother me that much but it’s going to make taking photos for this blog a bit trickier as scratches photograph REALLY well 🙁 and are hard to avoid showing especially with a flash. Maybe I’ll get the screen fixed with my right-to-an-expensive-repair?

What other Watches?

I am using the 935 a bit and also occasionally the Wahoo ELEMNT Rival. I like the Rival but when I use it all my data flows become messed up and I suddenly get duplicates in Xert and other places whenever I go cycling.

In homage to Wahoo, I am using the Bolt 2 on pretty much every ride, I kinda like and use their SpeedPlay PowrLink Zero pedals and love the Wahoo Rollr much more than the Kickr and Kickr Core. #Surprised

Last Night’s Test

Last night I did a pathetic triathlon.

I started out with HIIT intervals on my Vasa trainer for 40 minutes then did the Carol Bike 2×20 just for the heck of it. Rounding it all off with a 2-mile ‘sprint’ round the block to prove that the AW6 was accurate on the GPS front…it was…but the oHR didn’t lock on. Grrr.

Future Tests

I do have a few two- to three-day rides planned later in 2022. I guess any of the Epix 2 or Fenix 7 or Fenix 6 will be fine for those but my Bolt might need that battery boost by the end of the second day.

Buy Garmin Fenix 7

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10 thoughts on “Garmin Epix 2 and Apple Watch 6 – Why I’ve binned Fenix 7 and Watch 7 for those two

  1. I guess deep down we all want a pretty screen 😀
    You made me rethink my next choice for replacing F6Pro. Epix is now on a wish list. I just have to decide to go with the steel (look nicer and fresh as oposed to my all black F6) or multiband black (for better accuracy, but looks exactly the same as F6 when screen in off). I do not have the courage to go with white.
    Do you plan on doing multiband accuracy test as you did with multiGNSS?

    Thanks.

  2. I sold my Fenix 6x and moved to AW6 last year, then subsequently upgraded to AW7. I haven’t looked back. unless you are doing seriously long events the battery life is a none issue. I love the AW for all the other benefits and with the Workoutdoors app it is fantastic for sports.

    Also if you create a shortcut to turn off Bluetooth and cellular and raise to wake, battery life is exceptional. I have done 10 hour bike rides and still have 40 percent battery at the end.

      1. Hi, I am also using both the epix and the AW7 can you tell me how your data flow is set up ? Do you use one main app for all your stats or just use Apple health and Garmin connect side by side ? I would rather use one source but for some reason I can’t get Garmin info to apple health .
        Thanks

      2. my workflow is pants.

        i use a 935 and wahoo bolt 2 as workout loggers for my post workout stats and cumulative stats. i pretty much manually upload files to my key 3rd party platforms to avoid accidental data corruption. things like strava, i don’t worry about duplicates as it doesn’t really matter for segments and routes. that said i do have a 3rd strava account that i just use for training load into hrv4t.

        I don’t always use apple watch for workout but i do have that as one of my primary sources of readiness/hrv data.

        you should be able to give garmin connect permission to write to apple health easily enough. it needs to be specifically set to allow workouts to be written. (I don’t do that but it is a normal feature and so should be there). if you only wear one watch at a time then your workflow should be ok to update apple health correctly as a single repository.

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