The Garmin Forerunner 255S would possibly lack the additional splash of color you get on the AMOLED-packing Forerunner 265, however that is nonetheless an ideal operating look ahead to runners getting extra severe about placing in additional targeted time on the treadmill, trails or pavement.
Garmin has a sports activities watch at just about each worth level and in case you’re a runner who’s began to get extra severe about that operating time, the Forerunner 255S is a watch constructed for you.
The follow-up to the Forerunner 245 grabs Garmin’s new multiband GNSS mode from its top-end watches to enhance out of doors monitoring accuracy in usually difficult circumstances together with providing two case sizes and remains to be one thing swimmers, cyclists and now triathletes can put to good monitoring use.
It has since been succeeded by the Forerunner 265, which most notably provides an AMOLED display screen into the combination, however with the 255S providing the same characteristic set exterior of that AMOLED for much less, it’s nonetheless a operating watch value casting an eye fixed over.
Design & construct
1.1-inch transflective show
Waterproof as much as 50 metres
The Forerunner 255S is the smaller of the 2 case choices the 255 is accessible in, with a 41mm-sized case versus a 46mm one. So in case you like the concept of a watch that doesn’t dominate on the wrist, then that is the 255 mannequin for you.
You may as well seize the 255S in music or non-music editions. The previous provides a built-in 32GB music participant to retailer your individual bought audio or offline playlists from music streaming providers together with Spotify and Deezer. Choosing the music version does push the worth up by $50/£50.
That 41mm case is constructed from polymer, which is just about the go-to materials for Garmin’s Forerunner watches and that’s matched up with an 18mm silicone strap that’s properly constructed for train and will be eliminated in order for you one thing extra trendy or vibrant as a substitute.
Together with a typical array of bodily buttons there’s a 1.1-inch, 218 x 218 decision reminiscence in pixel (MIP) show. That’s a smaller show than discovered on the 245 and likewise a drop in decision.
That does imply it lacks the extra vibrant and vibrant AMOLED you’ll discover on the brand new Forerunner 265 and it’s not a touchscreen show both. If you happen to’re blissful residing with out that AMOLED touchscreen, you then’re nonetheless getting a good-sized display screen right here with strong viewing angles indoors and outside that was additionally high-quality to view throughout pool swims.
On the swimming entrance, it carries the identical waterproof ranking as its predecessor so it may be submerged in water as much as 50 metres deep and also you don’t need to take it off when having a shower, although it’s value taking it off once in a while to scrub the sweat off the strap.
Flip the watch over and also you’ll discover Garmin’s personal optical sensor that gives coronary heart charge knowledge repeatedly and through train and moreover gives blood oxygen measurements throughout sleep or all through the day. That’s additionally the place you’ll discover the charging port, which is the spot for Garmin’s fairly common charging cable for many of its watches although it lacks the wi-fi charging assist Garmin launched to its Vivomove Development hybrid smartwatch.
Total, it’s been a really snug time sporting the 255S. Sure, it’s small, but it surely’s mild and unobtrusive and has a ok show to take in your metrics and different insights it serves up on the transfer.
Forerunner is likely to be within the identify, however like different Forerunner watches, the 255S additionally has the sensors and monitoring options to trace swimming, biking and has profiles for mountaineering, snowboarding and snowboarding amongst different extra outdoorsy pursuits.
Garmin has bolstered the sports activities profiles accessible with the 255S now getting an open water swimming mode and a devoted triathlon mode to make it a extra reasonably priced triathlon watch in Garmin’s assortment.
If you’re turning to it for operating, then there’s lots right here. It covers operating profiles for ultras and monitor operating, and you’ve got entry to Garmin Coach to sync exercises from packages constructed for 5K as much as half marathon distance. There’s additionally a visible race predictor to present you a way of what you would possibly find yourself operating on race day primarily based on exercise historical past.
The large additions right here on this division are Garmin’s new multi-band GNSS mode and SATIQ expertise. The primary of these is just like the twin band mode used on the Apple Watch Extremely, tapping into a number of frequency bands from supported satellite tv for pc methods to ship richer accuracy, significantly when close to tall buildings, timber and mountain ranges.
Utilizing multi-band GNSS means sacrificing extra battery than utilizing the usual GPS monitoring mode, however does notably ship extra correct knowledge and did after we in contrast knowledge to a non-dual band operating watch operating close to large buildings, which may usually affect on location monitoring accuracy.
The SATIQ expertise is utilized by Garmin to mechanically decide which degree of satellite tv for pc assist you must use given your environment and placement. So the concept is that you simply’re not losing battery utilizing the highest finish positioning mode once you don’t want it. Finally although, I discovered that manually choosing the GPS mode was the easiest way to go in most eventualities.
Garmin has additionally sought to supply extra by way of insights into your restoration and likewise doing a greater job of packaging your knowledge in a approach you could higher soak up it. On the evaluation entrance, you now have one thing referred to as HRV standing, which makes use of coronary heart charge variability measurements taken from the optical sensor throughout sleep. Because the watch gathers these measurements over a number of weeks it tries to higher perceive in case your physique is dealing with your present coaching load.
Whereas a faucet of the highest bodily button will reveal in case your HRV standing is nice or unhealthy, the presentation of it feels a contact complicated. It could have undoubtedly benefited from together with the Coaching Readiness characteristic, which is accessible on the brand new Forerunner 265 and different pricier Garmin watches. It takes that HRV standing and different items of your monitoring knowledge to present you a extra simplified approach of understanding whether or not you must prepare or ease off.
It’s one thing that I like concerning the new Morning Report, which you’ll see once you get up telling you ways you’ve slept, the climate forecast, prompt exercises to do for the day and a bit of motivational message to place some pep in your step. It feels a bit gimmicky, but it surely’s a characteristic I’ve warmed to over time and it’s fairly a helpful factor to take a look at very first thing once you get up.
On prime of these new options, the 255S has every part the 245 provided. Whether or not that’s monitoring each day exercise and sleep or dispensing stress and blood oxygen saturation knowledge, it may be helpful as a health tracker and a monitor to your basic wellbeing, however lacks the extra severe well being monitoring options you’ll discover on the smartwatches just like the Apple Watch and Samsung Galaxy Watch.
The guts charge monitor carried out fairly properly each for regular paced and extra excessive depth exercises in opposition to Garmin’s personal HRM Professional Plus coronary heart charge monitor chest strap, with scope to pair up an exterior coronary heart charge monitor to bolster accuracy.
The 255S nonetheless lacks the total mapping assist you’ll get on Garmin’s top-end Forerunner, Fenix and Epix watches, but it surely does provide point-to-point navigation and the power to see breadcrumb trails in actual time, which nonetheless makes it helpful to get round or get again residence in case you’ve bought a bit misplaced.
The Forerunner 255S’s sports activities monitoring is well-rounded, providing good accuracy, a wealthy degree of coaching evaluation and a few new options that do make it extra dependable and insightful on these fronts too.
Spotify offline playlist syncing
Security and dwell monitoring options
Works with Garmin Pay
As a smartwatch, the 255S does a reasonably admirable job of being helpful once you’re not out monitoring train. It really works with Android and iOS and the expertise of utilizing the Garmin Join companion telephone app throughout these platforms is fairly constant by way of presentation and reliability of setup, pairing and syncing the watch.
By way of smartwatch options, it’s the exact same ones included on the 245. You have got entry to Garmin’s Join IQ Retailer, which isn’t at Apple App Retailer degree of high quality by way of apps, however is a helpful place for grabbing some extra watch faces, knowledge fields and further widgets if a bit of sluggish at occasions to obtain and sync them over.
Viewing notifications works properly regardless of that small display screen, although it might be a nicer expertise with the added touchscreen performance you get on the Forerunner 265. If you happen to’re utilizing it with an Android telephone, you may reply to texts and the notifications (out of luck on iPhone) and the assist normally is healthier than you’ll discover on most sports activities watches.
Garmin Pay is supported right here too, letting you make contactless funds from the watch in case your financial institution is supported and it labored high-quality for me once I wanted to rapidly seize a drink. However it does lack the slickness and supported banks you get from rival watch-based fee methods.
Then you’ve gotten the music options, which is made up of the controls you need to use for controlling audio taking part in in your telephone and the built-in music participant to retailer bought audio and playlists from Spotify, Deezer and Amazon Music.
There’s capability to retailer as much as about 500 songs and getting playlists over from supported music streaming providers will be achieved in a comparatively easy trend. Utilizing the music streaming throughout monitoring dents the battery extra, however the assist works properly, it was simple to pair a bunch of various Bluetooth headphones to make use of it.
Once more, it might be good to have a touchscreen right here to work together with the music options, however in order for you the power to stream music, podcasts and audiobooks on a sports activities watch, you need a Garmin just like the 255s in your wrist.
The Garmin Forerunner 255S is a watch I’d say is constructed to final a very good week in case you’re planning to make use of its key sports activities monitoring and smartwatch options regularly all through that week. Garmin says it must be 12 days, however attending to that quantity means lighter use of core monitoring modes. Such longevity is helped by the MIP display screen somewhat than a power-hungry AMOLED.
The most important drain on battery life right here is the music streaming and the continual blood oxygen saturation monitoring, which sees the battery life drop fairly dramatically. If you happen to can dwell with out that 24/7 blood oxygen knowledge, then it’s value disabling it.
If you happen to swap to the brand new multiband GNSSS out of doors monitoring mode, that quantity drops from 26 hours to 13 hours to present you a way of the distinction in battery utilization. Add music streaming into the combination and that drops to five.5 hours. That’s nonetheless ok to final an extended marathon, however listening to music does hit the battery arduous.
The numbers are larger than what was promised on the Forerunner 245, however in contrast to quite a lot of costlier Garmin watches, you’re getting one thing right here that can maintain out for per week with the potential to go additional in case you sacrifice a few of these extra battery-hungry options.
Value and availability
The Garmin Forerunner 255S prices $349.99/£299.99 or $399.99/£349.99 for the music model. You should buy it direct from Garmin.
The 255S undoubtedly sits at that extra midrange class of sports activities watches, so it’s a good bit of a leap from Garmin’s entry degree watches just like the Forerunner 55 ($199.99/£149.99) and the likes of the Coros Tempo 2 ($199.99/£179.99), which does provide the same characteristic set for much less cash.
It does additionally share comparable options to the Forerunner 265, which sees roughly a $100/£100 worth leap in comparison with the 255S to get that added AMOLED show and a few of Garmin’s newest software program options.
The Garmin Forerunner 255S won’t be the most recent mannequin on this specific Forerunner vary, however that doesn’t imply you must fully low cost shopping for it both.
If you happen to’re not that fussed about having an AMOLED touchscreen show and options like Coaching Readiness and some further sports activities profiles and would gladly take a much bigger battery as an alternative, then there’s nonetheless causes to go for the 255S.
It gives a very complete expertise total and never only for runners both. If you happen to had been in search of a Garmin watch that may work as a triathlon watch, then it’s value too.
The issue Garmin has is that the Coros Tempo 2 can provide quite a lot of what the 255S gives for much less cash. It’s not a greater smartwatch and the UI received’t be everybody’s cup of tea, however for sports activities monitoring and worth, it’s up there with the 255.
The Garmin Forerunner 255S gives an ideal expertise total, that’s not as expensive because the newer 265 and reveals going for an older watch isn’t essentially a nasty factor.