Garmin Venu 3 vs. Garmin Vivoactive 5: Which One To Choose?
The world of fitness and smartwatches is constantly evolving, with manufacturers pushing the boundaries to offer consumers more advanced features and improved functionality. Garmin, a renowned player in this industry, has recently launched two impressive devices – the Garmin Venu 3 and the Garmin Vivoactive 5.
Both of these watches come packed with innovative features designed to cater to the diverse needs of users interested in fitness tracking, health monitoring, and smartwatch capabilities. In this comprehensive review and comparison, we will delve into the various aspects of these two watches to help you make an informed decision when choosing the right wearable for your lifestyle. Check out the latest prices here: Garmin Vivoactive 5 and Garmin Venu 3.
Design and Display
The Garmin Venu 3 comes in one size option, featuring a 42-millimeter case with an 11-millimeter thickness. This size is well-suited for various wrist sizes and offers a comfortable fit.
One of the standout features of the Venu 3 is its 1.2-inch AMOLED display with a resolution of 390 x 390 pixels. This display is protected by Gorilla Glass 3 and offers vibrant colors and excellent contrast. Garmin has optimized the display to maintain decent battery life, ensuring that it can last anywhere from four days up to over a week, depending on usage.
Navigation on the Venu 3 is intuitive, thanks to its touchscreen functionality and two-button layout. The touch screen is highly responsive, making interactions smooth and easy. A notable addition to the Venu 3 is the ability to adjust font size, enhancing readability and user experience.
In contrast, the Vivoactive 5 also features a 1.2-inch AMOLED display with a resolution of 390 x 390 pixels, protected by Gorilla Glass 3. The touchscreen functionality and two-button layout on the Vivoactive 5 make navigation a breeze. The addition of font size adjustment, introduced with the Venu 3, enhances readability and user customization.
Both watches offer a comfortable fit, stunning AMOLED displays, and user-friendly navigation. The choice between the two may come down to personal design preferences and whether you prioritize font size adjustability.
Sleep Tracking and Sleep Coaching
One of the standout enhancements in the Venu 3 is its upgraded sleep-tracking capabilities. The Sleep Coach now establishes a personalized sleep baseline for users, providing insights into the ideal amount of sleep needed each night. This feature, however, raised a minor concern, as the personalized sleep baseline appeared to be the same for multiple users, possibly hinting at a lack of true personalization.
On the other hand, the Vivoactive 5 also offers comprehensive sleep tracking capabilities, including the ability to monitor sleep stages and track naps. The latter can be tracked automatically or manually, and the watch even doubles as an alarm to prevent oversleeping. Additionally, Garmin has introduced a “Sleep Coach” feature, which suggests optimal sleep durations based on various factors, enhancing sleep management.
Both watches provide valuable insights into sleep quality and offer features to help users optimize their sleep routines. However, the Venu 3’s personalized sleep baseline issue may need further refinement to truly deliver on its promise of tailored sleep recommendations.
Daily Summary and Morning Report
The Venu 3 introduces a new feature called the Daily Summary, offering users a snapshot of their day’s activities and wellness data. This feature presents insights like weather forecasts, sleep stats, HRV status, and calendar events, making it a helpful tool to start the day informed and prepared.
Similarly, the Vivoactive 5 offers the Garmin “Morning Report,” providing a summary of vital information when you wake up, including body battery, sleep quality, recovery time, HRV status, and calendar events for the day. This customizable feature ensures you start your day informed and ready.
Both watches excel in providing users with valuable data to kickstart their day. However, it’s important to note that the Venu 3’s Daily Summary includes weather forecasts, which can be a convenient addition for those who rely on weather information regularly. Check out the latest prices here: Garmin Vivoactive 5 and Garmin Venu 3.
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Expanded Sport Profiles
The Venu 3 impressively broadens its sport profiles, encompassing a wide range of activities. From Open Water Swimming to Hand Cycling and wheelchair activities, the watch caters to a diverse audience with varying fitness preferences.
In contrast, the Vivoactive 5 also offers a plethora of sports profiles, including running (both indoors and outdoors), cycling, gym workouts (including strength training and high-intensity interval training), yoga, Pilates, meditation, rowing, stand-up paddleboarding, skiing, snowboarding, tennis, and pickleball. One of the most significant additions to the Vivoactive series is Open Water swimming, expanding its capabilities for aquatic sports.
Both watches offer an extensive list of sports profiles, ensuring that users can track their preferred activities accurately. The choice between the two may come down to the specific sports you engage in.
Heart Rate Monitoring and GPS
Garmin has introduced an Elevate V5 Optical heart rate sensor to the Venu 3, which is also present in their high-end models. In real-world testing, this new sensor delivered accurate heart rate data across a range of activities, matching the accuracy of chest straps in interval workouts and longer runs.
The Vivoactive 5 utilizes Garmin’s fourth-generation elevated heart rate sensor, which performs admirably in cardio-based activities like running and cycling. During indoor and outdoor cycling sessions, the watch consistently delivered accurate heart rate data.
Both watches excel in heart rate monitoring, providing users with reliable data for various activities. However, for activities like weight training and high-intensity interval training, wrist-based optical heart rate sensors can struggle to maintain accuracy, and an external heart rate monitor may be advisable.
Additionally, the watch’s GPS performance was commendable, especially in challenging urban environments. Surprisingly, even without the multi-band technology found in some competitors, the Venu 3 demonstrated superior GPS accuracy.
The Vivoactive 5 also boasts a built-in satellite chipset, allowing you to record outdoor activities without needing to carry your smartphone. In terms of GPS accuracy, the Vivoactive 5 performs exceptionally well, consistently providing precise speed, distance, and pace data.
Both watches offer reliable GPS tracking, making them suitable companions for outdoor activities. However, the Venu 3’s superior GPS accuracy may appeal to users who frequently engage in activities in challenging environments. Check out the latest prices here: Garmin Vivoactive 5 and Garmin Venu 3.
While the Venu 3 focuses heavily on sports and fitness, it’s worth noting that some smartwatch features are present, such as phone notifications, calendar integration, and even a speaker and microphone for calls and music playback. However, the lack of standalone cellular connectivity sets it apart from rivals like the Apple Watch and Samsung’s Galaxy Watch.
In contrast, the Vivoactive 5 isn’t just a fitness tracker; it’s a full-fledged smartwatch compatible with both iPhones and Android phones. It offers seamless notification handling for texts, calls, and app alerts. Weather information synced from your phone, along with calendar events, keeps you informed throughout the day.
Both watches offer smartwatch features, but the Vivoactive 5 goes a step further by allowing Android users to respond to messages with quick pre-set messages and view photos sent to the watch. Additionally, the Vivoactive 5 introduces an on-screen keyboard, a feature that was previously exclusive to the Venu 3, expanding communication options.
Music enthusiasts will appreciate the Vivoactive 5’s capability to store music on the watch and stream it to Bluetooth headphones during workouts. Popular music streaming services like Spotify, Deezer, and Amazon Music are supported, allowing users to enjoy their favorite tunes without carrying their phones. The watch also provides music control functions for your paired smartphone. For convenience, Garmin Pay is included, facilitating contactless payments directly from the watch.
The choice between the two watches in terms of smartwatch features may come down to whether you prioritize advanced communication and music streaming capabilities (Vivoactive 5) or focus primarily on fitness and health tracking with basic smartwatch features (Venu 3).
Battery life is a crucial factor for any wearable device, and both the Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5 offer impressive longevity. The Venu 3 can last around four days in always-on mode, depending on usage, and charging the device takes about an hour, ensuring minimal downtime between uses.
The Vivoactive 5, when used solely as a smartwatch, can last up to 11 days on a single charge, provided the always-on display is disabled. Enabling the always-on display reduces this duration to around four to five days. However, real-world battery life can vary based on factors such as the frequency of outdoor activities, GPS usage, and the status of the SP2 sensor.
During testing, using the always-on display mode, tracking blood oxygen saturation levels during sleep, and recording approximately an hour of outdoor activity each day, the Vivoactive 5 delivered nearly four days of battery life.
The Vivoactive 5’s battery life is commendable, especially when compared to other smartwatches like the Apple Watch, which typically requires daily charging. Garmin’s optimization of the AMOLED display ensures that users can enjoy extended usage without frequent recharging, making it an excellent choice for those who value longer battery life.
Health and Activity Tracking
The Garmin Venu 3 excels in health and activity tracking, offering a wide range of metrics to help users monitor their well-being. It tracks essential health data, including steps, calories burned, heart rate, respiration rate, and blood oxygen saturation levels. Additionally, it assesses stress levels and measures intensity minutes, indicating the time spent in vigorous activity.
One of the standout features introduced with the Venu 3 is Garmin’s “Body Battery,” and it’s also present on the Vivoactive 5. This feature provides users with an estimate of their energy levels throughout the day, on a scale of 1 to 100, considering factors such as sleep and activity. A recent enhancement allows users to see specific activities’ impact on their energy levels, offering valuable insights.
Both watches offer comprehensive health and activity tracking, including stress monitoring and Body Battery. However, the Venu 3’s personalized sleep baseline and superior GPS accuracy may appeal to users seeking advanced sleep tracking and outdoor activity tracking capabilities.
Outdoor Activity Tracking
The Garmin Vivoactive 5 is a versatile companion for outdoor enthusiasts, offering a plethora of sports profiles to choose from, including running, cycling, gym workouts, yoga, rowing, skiing, snowboarding, and more. One of the most significant additions to the Vivoactive series is Open Water swimming, expanding its capabilities for aquatic sports.
One notable feature is the new “Workout Benefits Summary,” introduced with the Vivoactive 5. This feature offers insights into how each specific workout impacts your fitness, providing valuable feedback on the benefits derived from your training sessions.
Additionally, each workout is associated with a specific value indicating its effect on your body battery, giving you a holistic view of how exercise affects your energy levels throughout the day.
The watch also calculates your VO2 max for running and determines your “Fitness Age,” providing relatable figures to assess your overall fitness level.
The Venu 3 impressively broadens its sport profiles, encompassing a wide range of activities, from Open Water Swimming to Hand Cycling and wheelchair activities. The inclusion of new structured workout options directly on the watch is also a notable upgrade, making it more convenient to follow training plans without relying on external devices.
In terms of outdoor activity tracking, both watches offer a comprehensive set of features to cater to a wide range of sports and exercise preferences. The choice between the two may come down to the specific sports you engage in and your preference for the Workout Benefits Summary feature (Vivoactive 5) or the broader sport profile selection (Venu 3).
Accuracy in Tracking
When it comes to tracking outdoor activities, both the Garmin Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5 excel, thanks to their onboard GPS capabilities. The watches boast built-in satellite chipsets, allowing you to record outdoor activities without needing to carry your smartphone.
In terms of GPS accuracy, both watches consistently provide precise speed, distance, and pace data during various outdoor activities, demonstrating their reliability. However, it’s important to note that the Venu 3 demonstrated superior GPS accuracy, even in challenging urban environments.
For heart rate accuracy, both watches perform admirably in cardio-based activities like running and cycling, delivering reliable heart rate data. However, for activities like weight training and high-intensity interval training, wrist-based optical heart rate sensors can struggle to maintain accuracy, and an external heart rate monitor may be advisable for more reliable data.
Overall, both watches offer accurate tracking for outdoor activities, but the Venu 3’s superior GPS accuracy may be a deciding factor for users who frequently engage in activities in challenging environments.
In conclusion, the Garmin Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5 are both feature-rich smartwatches that cater to a wide range of users. The choice between the two ultimately depends on your specific needs and preferences.
Choose the Garmin Venu 3 if:
- You prioritize advanced sleep tracking with personalized sleep baselines.
- Superior GPS accuracy is crucial for your outdoor activities.
- You want a smartwatch with sports and fitness features but don’t require advanced
- communication capabilities. Buy Garmin Venu 3 here>>
Choose the Garmin Vivoactive 5 if:
- You seek a comprehensive health and activity tracking experience, including stress monitoring and Body Battery.
- Smartwatch features like messaging and music streaming are important to you.
- You engage in a variety of outdoor sports and appreciate the Workout Benefits Summary feature. Buy Garmin Vivoactive 5 here>>
Both watches offer impressive battery life, comfortable designs, and stunning AMOLED displays. Whichever model you choose, you can expect a versatile and reliable companion for your fitness and wellness journey. Check out the latest prices here: Garmin Vivoactive 5 and Garmin Venu 3.