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Garmin Forerunner 45, 245 and 945: 3 new amazing running watches

by Philippe Baudoin © Copyright (published 15/10/2019)
Forerunner 45, 245 and 945 running and triathlon watches

High performance watches that should make running and triathlon enthusiasts happy

Garmin announces the release of 3 new connected sports watches designed for running and triathlon. From the entry-level to the very high-end, these 3 watches are in fact significantly improved versions of the previous models (Forerunner 35, 235 and 935). They offer even more powerful tools for athlete monitoring and, depending on the model, include relevant functions such as mapping, an mp3 player, pulse oximeter, a new Body Battery function and much more. This is enough to seduce many athletes looking for a high-performance watch. The point in this article.

Garmin is renewing part of its Forerunner range, watches designed especially for running fans but also suitable for cyclists and swimmers. Three watches (5 references in total) were created: Forerunner 45 and 45S, Forerunner 245 and 245 Music and Forerunner 945. These new models benefit from innovations already present on other top-end models but also from new functionalities. Garmin also strengthens performance analysis tools for even better monitoring.

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The American company surprises us again by the extent of the improvements delivered in these new models. The autonomy is increased, the cases are thinner and lighter, the resolution is significantly improved, the color is generalized. Color mapping, which was only available on the Fenix 5X and Fenix 5 Plus now equips the Forerunner 945. SO does contactless payment. The mp3 player is becoming standard on all models except on the Forerunner 45. New features and measures are integrated such as the Body Battery™ energy monitor, incident assistance, breathing frequency, blood oximeter, menstrual cycle monitoring for women and much more. Each model also allows you to download and follow training programs for classic races (5 and 10 km, half-marathon, marathon) on your watch.

Garmin has perfect control of the market with increasingly complete and attractive watches.

Forerunner 45: the essential and simplicity at a low price

Forerunner 45
The essential at a low price, with access to training and coaching

The Forerunner 45 (or 45S in a smaller format) is the entry-level model in the series. Ideal for beginners or people looking for an easy-to-use watch, it offers the essential functions for running, walking, cycling or training at home, elliptical, yoga, treadmill, 1.31 spinning)). She also manages Garmin Coach training programs.

This model is available at an affordable price of 199 €. It comes in 2 case sizes: 39.5 mm for thin wrists (Forerunner 45S) and 42 mm (Forerunner 45). Buy this model.

Equipped with GPS, a heart rate meter on the wrist and an accelerometer, the watch records your course and race metrics (pace, distance, pulse, time, calories expended, heart rate), guides you in your training (coaching) and has assistance in case of an incident: the watch detects falls and can transmit your position to a friend.

It manages Smart notifications (call management and SMS), monitors your activity 24/7 (number of steps, distance, calories burned, sleep analysis and more) and calculates your VO2max. An accelerometer allows you to train in the gym. It is compatible with cadence sensors for running and cycling.

For athletes used to the Forerunner 35, this model is an improvement. It is equipped with a 208 x 208 px colour display (compared to 108 x 108 px for the old model). It is thinner and lighter and offers an autonomy of 13 hours in GPS mode and 7 days in watch mode.

In terms of functionalities, this new model offers more sports profiles (elliptical, yoga, indoor sports such as elliptical cycling, treadmill). The watch determines your stress and energy level.

Our opinion: If your budget is limited or if you are not looking for features designed for running or even cycling, this model should satisfy you fully.

Buy Garmin Forerunner 45 and 45S

Price (from)
149 119 €
171.07 €
169 149 €
199 149 €
119.99 €

Commercial links. Prices are not contractual. Please visit the merchant site.

Garmin Forerunner 45 : the entry-level watch in the series offering most of the functions for low-cost running

Forerunner 245 and 245 Music with GPS navigation and advanced training tools

Forerunner 245 Music
The best compromise for runners, with GPS navigation, advanced training tools and mp3 player on model 245 Music

Very lightweight at 38.5 g, the Forerunner 245 or Forerunner 245 Music (with integrated mp3 player) is the replacement for the Forerunner 235. It offers advanced metrics and powerful tools for athlete assistance, performance monitoring and statistics without being too complex. It is therefore a good compromise between the entry-level model and the top-of-the-range model.

Its features are ultimately very close to the Forerunner 645 Music, the upper range, which nevertheless remains better equipped for mountain outings (trail for example). Its price remains affordable compared to the richness of the functions offered: €299 for the Forerunner 245, €349 for the Forerunner 245 Music. Buy this model.

This model includes a GPS-compatible GPS chip, GLONASS and now Galileo, an optical sensor on the wrist and many new features: mp3 player (about 500 songs can be stored), compass, pulse oximeter for blood oxygen measurements (the watch evaluates acclimatization to altitude and heat and monitors oxygenation during sleep), advanced GPS navigation (Ariane's thread, return to the starting point, TracBack, point-to-point navigation, etc.).

Forerunner 245 also offers an assistance function that detects incidents and warns someone if necessary (requires a Smartphone). There are the connected functions (Smartphone notifications, VIRB camera control, weather, data sharing via Garmin Connect, dial downloads, etc.). ) and activity monitoring. Its autonomy is excellent with 24 hours in GPS mode (15 hours for the Forerunner 235).

This new model offers many performance monitoring and training assistance tools, including advanced running metrics (running dynamics, vertical oscillation, stride length, ground contact time), physiological measurements (VO2max, lactic threshold, breathing rate, etc.) that are used to predict running time. Some measures require an additional accessory.

Our opinion: this model is very complete and should appeal to a large number of athletes. The success of Forerunner 235, one of the brand's best-selling products in the world, is to be recalled. If your budget allows it, this watch is an excellent choice, whether you are a beginner or experienced. For the trail, prefer the Forerunner 645 which includes an altimeter for calculating elevations and altitude profiles.

Buy Garmin Forerunner 245 and 245 Music

Price (from)
299 €
412.03 €
249 €
429.98 €
349 255 €
249 €

Commercial links. Prices are not contractual. Please visit the merchant site.

Garmin Forerunner 245 and 245 Music : with or without mp3 player, GPS navigationadvanced training tools

Forerunner 945: ultra-complete, with music and maps. The best watch for professionals, triathletes and enthusiasts

Forerunner 945
A complete watch for triathletes. Mapping, payment, GPS navigation, advanced training tools. It's all there!

The Forerunner 945 is an improved version of the popular multisport watch Forerunner 935, a triathlon watch with similar functions to the Fenix 5 Plus but in an ultralight version with greater autonomy. Garmin completes this model by adding the latest innovations already installed on other watches, and they are of size:

  • An mp3 player. The watch can load about 1000 songs and works in streaming with a Spotify or Deezer subscription
  • The Garmin Pay function which allows you to pay for small purchases with your watch
  • Colour mapping and cycle paths in Europe. Only the Fenix 5X and Fenix 5 Plus offered this luxury.
  • A pulse oximeter. It is used to measure blood oxygen levels to estimate acclimatization to altitude or heat and oxygenation during sleep.
  • A popular TrendLine route generator (community-recorded routes) and a round-trip route generator
  • New functions for runners, cyclists and swimmers. It's hard to do better than that!
  • 41,000 golf courses worldwide

In addition, the watch is complemented by new functions useful for cyclists (Vector support, altitude profiles, cadence sensor support) and swimmers. Performance analysis tools are completed as well as physiological measurements. The autonomy goes from 24 to 36 hours in GPS mode!

This model is available for €599.99 or, in triathlon pack (with HRM-Tri and HRM-Swim belt), for €799. Buy this model.

Our opinion: this watch is undoubtedly the best running and triathlon watch in the world today. It will delight professional runners or triathletes or enthusiasts who want to optimize their training or have complete statistics on their sport. The mapping, navigation functions, route generator, mp3 player and payment function make it a very practical watch. For a versatile use (hiking, exploration, other sports), we nevertheless recommend the Fenix 5 Plus while waiting for the expected release of a Fenix 6 !

Buy Garmin Forerunner 945

Price (from)
744.59 €
599 498 €

Commercial links. Prices are not contractual. Please visit the merchant site.

Garmin Forerunner 945 : with mp3 player, contactless payment and color mapping: the top of the range for triathletes, pros and enthusiasts

Comparison between Forerunner 45, 245 and 945 models

We offer this comparison to help you understand the differences between these 3 watches and allow you to choose the model best suited to your objective.

Features and characteristics4545S245245 Music945
Weight (g)323638,538,550
Screen definition (px)208x208208x208240x240240x240240x240
Housing diameter (mm)39,54242,342,347
Thickness (mm)11,411,412,212,213,7
Autonomy (watch/GPS)7d / 13h7d / 13h7d / 24h7d / 24h14d / 36h
Pulse oximeter  
Racing dynamics  
Racing dynamics  
Training status and load  
Stroke predictor  
GPS navigation  
mp3 player   
Group Livetrack    
Contactless payment    
Barometric altimeter    
Prices199.99 €199.99 €299.99 €349.99 €599.99 €
Comparison Forerunner 45, 45S, 245, 245, 245 Music, 945
Philippe Baudoin
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