- Extra durable with sapphire crystal display and built-in wrist heart rate monitor
- Advanced features for running, cycling, swimming, golf and outdoor activities
- Fully loaded with all activity and sleep tracking features
- Robust smartwatch features
- Easy-to-use with great battery life
- Large watch face
The fenix 3 HR is the best fitness watch of 2015 and 2016.
The fenix 3 HR was Jeff’s go-to watch for well over a year. This is a multisport watch, outdoor watch, smartwatch, activity and sleep tracker, and heart rate monitor all in one. While the fenix 3 was in many ways ahead of its time with all of its features, the fenix 3 HR really took things to a new level adding the wrist heart rate sensor and a sapphire display. It’s a heck of watch and if you live to run, cycle, swim, or explore, it’s going to be hard to pass up on, unless you look at the price tag. Original price tag was $600 but has seen a big price drop [Check on Amazon]. The other knock on the fenix 3 HR is that it’s rather large and heavy by watch standards, but it’s actually quite comfortable and you can interchange the bands so that it can look more or less like a sport watch. In any case, here’s what you can expect from the fenix 3 HR.
It will give you all of your standard activity and sleep tracking metrics (i.e. steps, calories, all of that). It also tracks your HR 24×7. Additionally, it has smart features such as the ability to relay smartphone notifications, display your calendar and the weather, and control music on your phone as well as the VIRB action camera. It has access to Connect IQ so you can download custom apps, widgets, watch faces, and data fields. It syncs via Bluetooth and USB to Garmin Connect, which is where all of your personal data is stored. That’s a pretty good app and Garmin pays a lot of attention to it in terms of regular updates. In terms of sports, here’s their deal.
- Running (indoor/out) — route, distance, pace/speed, calories, cadence, timing info, heart rate (also ground contact time, vertical oscillation, GTC balance, stride length, and vertical ratio while wearing either the HRM-Tri or HRM-Run)
- Cycling (indoor/out) — route, distance, speed, calories, timing info, heart rate (also speed/cadence with the sensor and power info with a power meter)
- Swimming (pool/open water) — distance, stroke count, stroke rate, interval data, SWOLF score (also HR with HRM-Tri or HRM-Swim)
- Golf — distance to front, middle, and back of the green plus distance of each shot and a scorecard
- Hiking, Trail Running, and Climbing — big thing added here is altitude info
- Skiing, Snowboarding — 3D distance and pace added
- Stand Up Paddleboarding, rowing (indoor/out)
- Strength, Cardio
- Jumpmaster, Tactical
It also has GPS, GLONASS, and UltraTrac mode. It’s water resistant down to 100 meters and can be paired with ANT+ sensors such as the Garmin Tempe sensor and heart rate monitors.
The bottom line is the fenix 3 HR is a stud, but it’s expensive. It can do a heck of a lot, but there are downsides here and there. Battery life is good, but GPS accuracy sometimes can be spotty. The WHRM is nice to have but it’s really only reliable for running. The watch looks great, but it’s not that convenient when it comes to interchange bands. The smartwatch features are neat, but not as robust as that of the Apple Watch or Moto 360. It’s a solid sport watch, but lighter and more streamlined watches exist (like the FR735XT). It’s a burly outdoor watch, but more hardcore watches exist (like the epix).
We really like this watch. As the price point drops, it becomes even more attractive though! Here’s a link to check out the fenix 3 HR at Clever Training—free shipping and no tax (excl. FL).