The Epix range of Garmin has now reached maturity and with it the total symmetry with the other models of the outdoor range. With the Garmin Epix Pro new sizes are also arriving.
It is no longer limited to 47mm as in the Garmin Epix 2Now there is also a smaller and a larger version, in the image and likeness of the Fenix 7. And speaking of Fenix 7, today we also present the Fenix 7 range. Garmin Fenix 7 Pro which basically covers the same new features as these Epix.
The three sizes are the main novelty of the new Epix Pro, but not the only one. Welcome is the addition of the LED flashlight on the front of the watch, the same that debuted the Fenix 7X. The optical pulse sensor is also renewed with the new Garmin Elevate v5 and now multiband is available regardless of the type of crystal you choose (you no longer need to go for the sapphire crystal version to have multiband).
Let's go through all the news and then I will detail the main features in detail.
News Garmin Epix Pro
The Garmin Epix Pro becomes the de facto AMOLED version of the Fenix 7 range. It is now available in two more sizes than before and has the same features as its Fenix 7 Pro siblings. It simply swaps the transflective MIPS display for the AMOLED display. In fact, even the weights are practically identical (gram up, gram down).
- Available in three sizes: Epix Pro 42mm, Epix Pro 47mm and Epix Pro 51mm
- Exactly the same screen sizes as the Fenix 7 and Fenix 7 Pro: 1.2″ on Epix Pro 42mm, 1.3″ on Epix Pro 47mm and 1.4″ on Epix Pro 51mm.
- Gorilla Glass or sapphire glass for an extra fee
- LED flashlight available in three sizes
- Multi-band GNSS reception in any finish (no need to go for the sapphire crystal version)
- New Garmin Elevate v5 pulse sensor
- 32GB of internal memory in any version - previous basic models had only 16GB
- Fast battery charging is added
- The Epix Pro has the same autonomy as the normal one: 16 days in clock mode, 6 days with the screen always on, up to 42 hours with GPS use.
- Epix Pro 42mm has a battery life of 10 days / 4 days / up to 28 hours while the Epix Pro 51mm is 31 days / 11 days / up to 82 hours with GPS use.
- Slight tweak to the user interface with a small redesign, new sport icons, etc.
- Red illumination mode, so that the display illumination is less disturbing at night
- New map display screens to show data in split screen or on a sphere around the map
- Information overlaid on the maps with wind, temperature or cloud data. Available in the weather widget, not on the navigation maps themselves.
- Hill Score, a new metric for evaluating your performance on slopes
- Endurance Score, another new metric to evaluate your ability to maintain physical activity over a long period of time.
- Jet lag warningalready present in the Fenix 7
- Price, starting at £949 for Epix 2 Pro 42mm and Epix 2 Pro 47mm (£100 increase over Fenix 7 Pro)
- Epix 2 Pro 51mm starting at 1.049€.
- For 100€ more on each of them, sapphire crystal and titanium bezel
As you can see it is the same as the Fenix 7 Pro but with the differences that come with AMOLED screen technology in terms of autonomy.
New features of the Garmin Epix Pro explained
If I have to keep one thing that's new about the Garmin Epix Pro, it's the arrival of the LED flashlight in all versions, regardless of size. If there is one thing I like about the Fenix 7X (and subsequently of the Garmin Enduro 2) is undoubtedly that function that many of us made fun of when it was first introduced, but once it is used, it is essential for those of us who train at night.
However Garmin forced you to go to the larger version to enjoy it.
This is no longer necessary. In the Fenix 7 Pro it will be available regardless of the size of the watch and the same goes for the Epix Pro, which not only reaches this model but will do so in all sizes: Epix Pro 42mm, Epix Pro 47mm and Epix Pro 51mm.
Hopefully it will become a staple in Garmin and end up making the jump to the Forerunner range in the next generation of models.
Multiband will also be present in all versions, accompanied by the SatIQ function. In the previous Garmin Epix it was necessary to buy the sapphire crystal version, with the additional outlay. Something that I consider was a mistake, because a few months later Garmin launched a mid-range as the Forerunner 255 in which the multiband was included at no extra cost.
And the same goes for the 32GB of internal memory, which is now a staple in any watch in the range. Yes, solar charging is not available on the Epix, but I think this is to be expected given the high battery consumption of the AMOLED display.
New version of the optical pulse sensor. More green LEDs and the two orange LEDs remain, for greater precision in certain skin tones. Of course the oxygen saturation estimation of the past is maintained. In terms of accuracy I don't expect any changes, because the previous sensor worked really well.
But it may give way to other functions such as ECG, skin temperature measurement and some other additional measurement. It may not work in the beginning (because of having to receive different certifications from different health organizations), but I'm sure the changes are going in that direction.
Regarding the software, the new models bring two new metrics. The first one is Hill Score. To define it quickly, it is a metric that tries to define with a single number your ability when running on a slope. That way you can train and see if the metric gets better or worse to determine if the training is having an effect.
It is necessary to accumulate a minimum of two weeks of training in which there must be some elevation. That is to say, you have to be training on hills, it is not enough to train on the flat.
It is based on the trail activity-specific VO2Max that was introduced with the first Garmin Enduro, so it is the metric that is running below this number.
Depending on the metric data, 1TP7 will provide different categories: amateur, trained, expert, elite, etc.
And there will also be differences in terms of your strengths divided into strength and endurance (Hill Strength and Hill Endurance). The former based on your ability to maintain strength on climbs for short, intense periods, while the latter is for the ability to climb for longer and lower intensity.
Additionally the watch will give you some generic tips on how to improve your metrics (and thus your speed on climbs).
Endurance Score, on the other hand, evaluates your performance in long-duration physical activities, and tracks this type of training.
As with Hill Score, Endurance Score requires a minimum record of two weeks of activity. It will take into account all the activities of various sports, but in the calculation it will prioritize the longest ones.
You can do 20 different sports and all of them will count in the calculation, but the top three will have the most influence on this metric. A wink with triathletes in mind...
Review Garmin Epix Pro
When it launches something new, Garmin's modus operandi is always the same. First it launches it timidly and, if the results are positive, shortly afterwards it turns it into a product in its own right.
This is basically what has happened with this Epix range. At first only one size came to the market, the most common 47mm. Once the market has given it a good reception, it is time to expand the range and offer more sizes. Something totally positive, because everyone podrá choose the size you prefer.
But beyond the different sizes the best news is that the flashlight also makes an appearance. I always say it and I will always say it, when Garmin introduced the Fenix 7X and said it had a flashlight it was taken pretty much as a joke. Well let me tell you... it's one of the best new features to come along in recent years.
It offers powerful illumination and several modes of use, which is not only useful to be seen if you run at night but also to light your way. I've used it a lot while I've been testing the Fenix 7X and also the Enduro 2 (with a little more brightness, which is the flashlight these Epix come with), and it's what I miss most about those models.
This is perhaps what makes the Epix Pro launch more eye-catching than the Garmin Fenix 7 Pro. Having more sizes available and the addition of the flashlight makes it a much more appealing model than the regular Epix.
The new Garmin Elevate v5 sensor will perhaps allow for more capability going forward, more health-focused features or other estimations rather than heart rate measurement, but I suppose those features will come later.
And the new software features that will undoubtedly also come to the previous models, but also do not represent a sufficient reason for purchase, especially considering the new turn of the screw on prices.
But as with every Garmin launch, it's time to talk about the price. The Garmin Epix Pro starts at 949€ for the 42mm and 47mm versions, with a 1049€ price tag on the 51mm which simply brings a bigger screen and more autonomy. But those more than 1,000€ don't even get you sapphire or titanium crystal! To have it you would have to pay even more.
The truth is that I can't explain why a 47mm Garmin Epix Pro costs 949€ with a 1.3″ screen and steel bezel, while the Garmin Forerunner 965 costs 300€ less with a larger screen (1.4″) and titanium bezel. And it is most likely that the new software features presented today will also end up coming to the 965.
Does the flashlight and additional software cost 300€? Or up to 600€ more if we want to match in terms of titanium and screen size (Epix Pro 51mm Sapphire Titanium)? I think Garmin should review this pricing policy, and obviously not by raising the price of the Forerunner.
And with that... thanks for reading!