The Garmin Forerunner 255 and the Coros Pace 2 are both excellent running watches for athletes who want something in the mid-range price category ($200-400). Both watches offer a variety of features, such as GPS tracking, heart rate monitoring, interval training, and more.
Garmin is the industry leader in GPS watches; Coros is a relative newcomer but has quickly made its place by offering tried and tested features of Garmin in an affordable price range.
Here, We will compare Garmin Forerunner 255 vs Coros Pace 2 in detail and find out which one is the best running watch for you.
Disclaimer: If you buy through affiliate links on this article, we may earn a commission without any additional cost to you.
Garmin Forerunner 255 vs Coros Pace 2: General Comparison Table
Garmin Forerunner 255 vs Coros Pace 2: Price
The Garmin Forerunner 255 and 255S retail for around $350, while the Coros Pace 2 retails for around $200. The music variant of Forerunner 255 goes for $400.
Here, Coros seems to be offering a better deal as you get more features for a lower price. In fact, it is priced the same as the FR 55, the entry-level Garmin watch for runners.
Winner: Coros Pace 2
Garmin Forerunner 255 vs Coros Pace 2: Design and Display
Garmin has introduced two sizes with Forerunner 255, which have almost identical features and designs except for the screen resolution and battery performance.
Both models are protected by Gorilla Glass 3; have 5 ATM water resistance, 5 button navigation system, a transflective memory-in-pixel (MIP) display, and silicone straps.
Here is a brief breakdown of their dimension and screen resolution.
- Garmin Forerunner 255 (46mm): 45.6 x 45.6 x 12.9 mm, 49g, 22mm quick-release Strap
- Garmin Forerunner 255S (41mm): 41 x 41 x 12.4 mm, 39g, 20mm quick-release Strap
Coros Pace 2 is almost the same size as the Forerunner 255S (42 × 42 × 11.7mm), and it is also protected by Gorilla Glass. Its always-on memory display is also transflective and has great visibility in direct sunlight.
Pace 2 has a 5 ATM water-resistance rating, and 2 button navigation system (digital crown and button), and comes with a 20mm quick release band.
However, the watch weighs only 35g with the strap. For runners, weight is an important consideration as every gram counts when you are running long distances.
Garmin Forerunner 255 vs Coros Pace 2: Features
As far as smart features are concerned, the main difference between the two watches is that the FR255 can store music as well as stream playbacks on Spotify, Deezer, iHeartradio, and Amazon Music. You can also download podcasts and music for offline listening. There is no Wi-Fi support on the Coros Watch.
Next, the Garmin watch can make contactless payments using Garmin Pay. This is a great feature for runners as it means they can leave their phone and wallet at home while going out for a run. Coros Pace 2 simply doesn’t.
Also, you can find more sports modes on the Garmin watch than on the Coros watch. To mention a few: yoga, Pilates, and cross country skiing.
Though both watches have fairly accurate GPS, Garmin goes a step further by offering dual-frequency GPS support on FR 255 that allows it to connect to both GPS and GLONASS satellite networks. This means that the watch can pick up a signal in challenging environments like forests and urban canyons.
In the health tracking department, both watches come with all-day heart rate monitoring and sleep tracking. However, Garmin comes with a Pulse oximeter that can be used to measure blood oxygen saturation levels. This is a great feature for hikers and mountaineers as it can help them acclimatize to high altitudes.
In the performance and recovery department, Garmin yet again takes the lead with its Training readiness, Training Status, and body battery. Plus, it has introduced new features like 24/7 HRV monitoring, native Running power, acute load, and more with the FR255.
Winner: FR 255
Garmin Forerunner 255 vs Coros Pace 2: Battery Life
The Garmin Forerunner 255 has up to 14 days of battery life in smartwatch mode and up to 30 hours in GPS mode. So there is no need to charge it every day as you do with a smartwatch.
However, the battery life drops to 10 hours if you use the music playback feature along with GPS. To make it even more simple, you would be able to get almost 3-5 days of battery performance on a single charge.
Keep in mind that the numbers drop a little if you are going for the FR 255S.
Coros Pace 2, on the other hand, has a lot to offer in this department. The watch can last up to 22 days in the smartwatch mode, and 30+ hours in the GPS mode. This is particularly impressive when you consider that both watches have almost the same display type.
Winner: Coros Pace 2
Garmin Forerunner 255 vs Coros Pace 2: Final Verdict
The $150-200 price difference is too high to justify the extra features on the Garmin FR 255. For those who are just getting into running and are on a budget, the Garmin watch is a big no. Forget the bells and whistles, go for the Pace 2. It offers much more value for the money, the same display, and more battery life.
However, if you have already invested in the Garmin ecosystem, and want more accuracy or advanced training metrics, the FR 255 is a good buy. The price seems fair for the sports tracking it offers compared to Fenix 7 or Forerunner 955 watch.
Garmin Forerunner 255 vs Coros Pace 2: Specs And Features
|Product Name||Garmin Forerunner 255||Coros Pace 2|
|Dimensions, Weight||46mm: 45.6 x 45.6 x 12.9 mm, 49g | 41mm: 41 x 41 x 12.4 mm, 39g||42 × 42 × 11.7mm | 35g-36g|
|Band Size||45mm: 22mm | 41mm: 18mm||20mm|
|Colors||Tidal Blue, Slate Gray, Light Pink, Powder Gray, Whitestone, Black||Black, White|
|Display Size||46mm:1.3 inches | 41mm: 1.1 inches||1.2 Inch|
|Screen Type & Resolution||sunlight-visible, transflective memory-in-pixel (MIP) | 46mm: 260 x 260 pixels, 41mm:218 x 218 pixels (active area)||Always-On Memory LCD, 240 x 240 pixels|
|Screen Protection||Corning Gorilla Glass 3||Fiber Reinforced Polymer|
|Companion App||CONNECT IQ||Coros App|
|Storage||4G & up to 500 songs||16MB to 64MB|
|Timer & Alarm||Yes||Yes|
|Customizable Watch Faces||Yes||Yes|
|Music Storage, Control||Yes||No|
|Make calls, send texts & Emails||Yes(Text response/reject phone call with text (Android only))||No|
|Contactless Payment||Yes (Garmin Pay)||No|
|Built-in GPS||Yes (GPS, GLONASS, Galileo)||Yes (GPS/QZSS, GLONASS, BeiDou)|
|Heart Rate Tracking||Yes||Yes|
|Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis||No||No|
|Sync Data With Strava or Apple Health||Yes||Yes|
|Battery Performance||Up to 6.5 hours to 14 days (mixed usage)||Regular use: 20 days, Full GPS mode: 30 hours, UltraMax mode: 60 hours|
|Charger Type||USB charging cable.||Charging dock|
|Fast Charging||No||No(1-2 hours)|