Released in April 2021, Garmin Venu 2 is the latest in the Venu series popular for its superior AMOLED display. The company is demanding top dollars for it, almost $400, which puts it in direct competition with the likes of Apple watch series 6, Samsung Galaxy watch 2 and Fitbit Sense. It undercuts Garmin’s very own premium Fenix and Forerunner series.
Here we are going to pit the Venu 2 against the two years old Garmin Forerunner 245 Music, also known as FR 245 Music. As both watches are by the same company, we would find a large overlap of capabilities and performance, and yet they have their own strengths and weaknesses.
Read on for a thorough comparison of Garmin Venu 2 vs Garmin Forerunner 245 Music. This post would help you choose the right Garmin fit for your needs.
Disclaimer: If you buy through affiliate links on this article, we may earn a commission without any additional cost to you.
Garmin Venu 2 vs Garmin FR 245 Music: Price & Value Difference
Garmin Venu 2, as stated earlier, demands about $400 for both variants ( Venu 2/2S). This is by no means cheap compared to the top dogs in the market, but it is one of the most complete smartwatches up for sale right now. The powerful features and accuracy of data justify its price point. It also is a worthy successor to the original Garmin Venu which was launched at a similar price.
Now as compared to Venu 2, Garmin Forerunner 245 Music is a bit cheaper at about 340$, but is that 60$ difference worth going for the Venu 2? In our opinion, it is. Though Forerunner 245 Music is a powerful sport watch, it lacks advanced features like the crisp AMOLED display, Garmin Pay, and an altimeter. Alternatively, it offers a clean and intuitive UI, comprehensive sports data collection, and offline music. These features are more than enough for most users, and if you aren’t interested in music, the original Garmin Forerunner 245 is priced at $300.
Garmin Venu 2 vs Garmin Forerunner 245 Music: Design & Display Comparison
|Specs/Features||Garmin Venu 2||Garmin Forerunner 245 Music|
|Dimensions||40 mm : 40.4 x 40.4 x 12.1mm45 mm: 45.4 x 45.4 x 12.2mm||42.3 x 42.3 x 12.2mm|
|Colors||45 mm:Silver bezel with Granite Blue case, Slate bezel with Black case40 mm:Slate bezel with Graphite case, Light Gold bezel with Light Sand case, Silver bezel with Mist Grey case, Rose Gold bezel with White case||White, black, Aqua, Slate Gray and Berry.|
|Casing Size||40 mm and 45 mm||42.5 mm|
|Casing Material||fiber-reinforced polymer with Stainless steel bezel||fiber-reinforced polymer|
|Strap Size||40mm: 18 mm fits wrist of 110-175 mm circumference45mm: 22 mm, fits wrist of 135-200 mm circumference||20mm with a wrist fit of 127-204 mm circumference|
|Strap Material||Silicone (quick release)||Silicone (quick release)|
|Weight||40mm: 38.2 grams45mm: 49 grams||38.5 g|
|Water Resistance||5 ATM (Safe for both pool and open-water swims)||5 ATM (Safe for both pool and open-water swims)|
|Screen Size||40mm: 1.1 inches45mm: 1.3 inches||1.2 inches|
|Screen Protection||Corning Gorilla Glass 3||Corning Gorilla Glass 3|
|Screen Technology||AMOLED||transflective memory-in-pixel (MIP) display|
|Resolution||40mm: 360 x 360 pixels45mm: 416 x 416 pixels||240 x 240 pixels|
Garmin Venu 2 is available in 2 sizes; a 40 mm smaller one and one sizing at 45 mm. Straight up this allows the user to choose between the perfect size suiting their wrists. Forerunner 245 music on the other hand is available in only one size which can be a deal-breaker for many.
Comparing the case and overall build of these watches, both scream Garmin in your face when you look at them. They have identical build qualities with high-quality plastic casing. Venu 2 comes with a premium stainless steel bezel with grooves in it that gives it a nicer finish and added protection. Forerunner 245 has a subtly rugged approach and it follows the footsteps of Garmin’s rugged Fenix lineup. Venu 2 has a touchscreen with 2 buttons for navigation on the side while the Forerunner 245 music is controlled by 3 buttons on the left and 2 buttons on the right.
Their plastic build allows them to be very light on the wrist while being sturdy and rugged. The smaller Venu 2 weighs at about 38.2 grams while the larger 45 mm variant weighs at 49 grams. This enables both of them to be excellent companions during long runs and heavy workouts.
The next point of interest is the straps. Forerunner 245 is equipped with the standard quick release 20 mm straps while the Venu 2 comes in 18 mm and 22 mm variants which you can buy in various colors from third-party vendors to increase the aesthetic appeal according to your attire or choice. The straps that come with the watches from the company are quite comfortable themselves and easy to wear and remove.
Venu 2 comes in a lot of appealing colors with different colors for bezels and cases. The colors are Slate Stainless Steel Bezel with Graphite Case and black case, Light Gold Stainless Steel Bezel with Light Sand Case, Silver Stainless Steel Bezel with Mist Gray Case, and Granite blue case, Rose Gold Stainless Steel Bezel with White Case. Lots of choices are also available in Forerunner 245 music to select from. Namely, the colors are White, Black, Aqua, Slate Gray, and Berry.
In terms of waterproofing, both the watches are rated 5ATM against water ingression. This basically means that you can go up to 50 meters underwater with your watch on. It is recommended not to push the limits though. You don’t have to take these watches off while swimming in a pool or open water. These watches are built for most over the water and underwater sports too.
Talking about the display, one of the major upgrades Venu 2 like its predecessor has over other Garmin watches is the high-quality AMOLED display. The display is 1.3 inches for the 45 mm Model and 1.1 inches for the 40 mm model. Other than the size difference the panels are the exact same.
They have excellent performance under the sun with bright and clear image quality. This is justified by the high resolution they have at 416 x 416 pixels which gives it a pixel-dense display with vibrant colors and great viewing angles. The black bezels are a little thick but nothing much to complain about.
Compared to the Venu 2, Forerunner 245 music’s display is the older MiP technology. The panel is a 1.2-inch transflective memory-in-pixel (MIP) display. This doesn’t mean that the display is bad in any way. It is perfectly readable outdoors and you don’t have to squint your eyes to read the details.
The panel is not a touch panel though and all the navigation is done quite conveniently through the 5 buttons on the sides. This setup probably suits the athletes more as it is difficult to navigate properly on a touch panel with sweaty hands. Buttons on the other hand suit the users under these circumstances.
Garmin Venu 2 vs Garmin Forerunner 245 Music: Sports, Fitness & Health Features Compared
|Garmin Venu 2||Garmin Forerunner 245 Music|
|Personal Activity Intelligence||Yes||Yes|
|Sync Data With Strava, Apple Health||Yes||Yes|
Garmin is known for its rugged, tough, and durable wearables. But we have to see how these two devices go against each other. This section will be a comparison of their sports, fitness, and health features and we will see how they fare against each other.
Garmin has loaded the Venu 2’s GPS with GLONASS and GALILEO that offer above-average location tracking and excellent coverage. The signal picking capability is excellent and it locks on in no time at all.
When it is said that it has an above-average accuracy, it means that the watch may be lacking in some places. It works great in simpler, plain areas. Things start to go a little bit downhill when complex and heavily jagged tracks or tree cover comes. A little difference (about 3-4%) occurs due to this. It is great overall.
Compared to Venu 2, Forerunner 245 music also rocks a multi-satellite GPS system available with both GLONASS and GALILEO. It is capable of mapping the path on which you run as well as the pace and intervals. The GPS itself is quick and responsive and is ready to roll in just under a minute.
The GPS + GLONASS provided in the Forerunner 245 music is very capable in terms of accuracy and speed. It’s testing in the urban and rural areas depicts results close to the best GPS smartwatches. The watch performs equally well in tree cover or underground areas too, as well as the hilly areas and mountainous tracks.
Overall, Forerunner 245 Music has a slight advantage in this department.
Garmin Venu 2: Sports, Fitness and Health Features
Garmin Venu 2 is one of the most complete sports watches out there. It seems like Garmin was trying to hit the mark of a fully packaged watch and they did it just fine. Talking about sports Venu 2 is capable of tracking just about anything. Your steps, calories, heart rate, stress, blood oxygen levels, sleep tracking, and a lot more. The tracking itself hits right up to the mark.
A welcome addition to the Venu 2 was the addition of HIIT workouts along with 25 other sports profiles like indoor climbing, hiking, and bouldering. Original Venu lacked these so this is quite appreciated.
Venu 2 also provides animated workouts. There are over 75 profiles available for workouts including Yoga, Pilates, and Cardio, etc. The new HIIT exercises work quite well and are provided with vibration feedback that lets you know whenever a new interval is starting and also every second for the last five seconds before the next interval.
Garmin has also upped the ante with its strength training in the Venu 2. The strength training profile now includes your personal best records as it is an integral part of the strength training. Another very cool feature while accessing the strength training is that it now shows a graphic animation which makes it easy to visualize which muscle groups are being targeted. This feature is especially helpful for newbies.
Another cool feature that has been in the Venu series is that the watch is able to guess your “fitness age”. Older models compared your age to the actual fitness that you have, but now Venu 2 displays more comprehensive data by keeping into account your weekly activity, heart rate, body mass index, and body fat percentage.
Health snapshot is also quite a nifty feature which when accessed, enables your Venu 2 to take a 2-minute recording of your essential health stats. All the data including your heart rate, stress, heart rate variations, and respiration rates are stored in the Garmin Connect which can be viewed later. You can also generate it in the form of a PDF to be shown to your health caretaker.
As far as the heart rate monitoring is concerned, Garmin equipped the Venu 2 with the latest 4th Gen Elevate sensor that is quite capable in extracting the data especially for a wide variety of applications where it is needed. SpO2 meter also works very immaculately as it rivals some good quality pulse oximeters with ease. Sleep tracking is another feature that is worth a mention in Venu 2.
It now depicts the quality of your sleep in terms of a sleep score that depends on how your sleep was. It gives the data alongside the sleep analysis where it shows the duration of sleep, stages (Light, Deep, REM) and total time awake.
Some other nifty features Venu 2 offers are incident detection and assistance where it calls the emergency contact if something happens to you during your workout. Women health features, hydration tracking and all day stress tracking.
Forerunner 245 Music: Sports, Fitness and Health Features
Straight up, it might not be as capable as Venu 2 but that doesn’t mean it is worth buying. It has all the basic features plus some more. Related to training, Garmin is very helpful by providing features like training status which tells the extent of your training whether you are overtraining or undertraining, training effect which shows the effect of your training on your overall strength and endurance and training load, which compares your present exercise to your overall exercise history.
Forerunner 245 music is the first forerunner watch to have a pulse oximeter installed in it. It works perfectly well in giving you an idea how your body is utilizing the oxygen. It is capable of tracking your runs be it on a treadmill or a track, along with various other sports.
During the runs you can have customizable stats on the watch face that will help you extract only the data you desire. Forerunner comes with a 3rd Gen heart rate sensor as compared to the 4th gen in Venu 2. So the performance lags a little bit behind. But it is expected from a watch that is about 2 years old. It still performs great compared to the watches of its time. It is quite accurate but if you still want to extract more, you can connect a chest strap using the watch’s Bluetooth.
Like Venu 2, Forerunner 245 Music also has the option of interval training and strength training. It also provides you with the option of vibration feedback which allows you to keep a check on how many of the intervals have you passed.
One of the things missing in the FR 245 Music is the barometric altimeter that works quite well in the Venu 2. The elevation readings in the FR 245 music are not as accurate because it relies totally on the GPS to give the elevation readings.
Overall health tracking in FR245 Music is up to the mark covering all the important aspects like calories, steps, workout intensity, heart rate, distance covered, menstrual tracking for women, and stress. It also works underwater when it comes to gathering data where it even tracks the heart rate, stroke type, and the distance swum.
Garmin Venu 2 vs Garmin Forerunner 245 Music: Smartwatch Features Compared
|Garmin Venu 2||Garmin Forerunner 245 Music|
|Connectivity||Bluetooth 5.0||Bluetooth 5.0|
|Companion App||Garmin Connect||Garmin Connect|
|Music Storage||650 songs||500 songs|
|Timer & Alarm||Yes||Yes|
|Customizable Watch Faces||Yes||Yes|
|Music Storage, Control||Yes||Yes|
|Contactless Payment||Yes ( Garmin Pay )||No|
Both of these watches have almost identical smartwatch features (and also the most essential ones). For example, both of them have Smartphone notifications enabled, you can reject a phone call with a text response on both of them but this feature works only for the android users.
You can use both of these watches to control the music running on the phone as well as the music available on the onboard memory of the watches. You can also use your smartwatch to find your lost phone or your phone to find your lost smartwatch.
Talking about the music alone, Venu 2 has more memory when it comes to song storage. Venu 2 can store up to 650 songs while FR 245 Music can store up to 500 songs. Both come with offline Spotify support though and can also connect to the Deezer and Pandora apps on your phone to sync your favorite tracks or podcasts. You can listen to your favorite content via Bluetooth paired headsets of your choice. The connectivity provided by both of these wearables is immaculate and the pairing process itself is quick.
A major caveat that FR 245 Music faces is that it has no Garmin Pay. This can be a bummer for those who seek convenience in their payments via contactless payment methods. All the other features like incident detection for instance are present in both of these smartwatches and none are better than the other.
Garmin Venu 2 vs Garmin FR 245 Music: Battery Life & Charging Comparison
|Garmin Venu 2||Garmin Forerunner 245 Music|
|Battery Type||non-removable Lithium-polymer||non-removable Lithium-polymer|
|Battery Performance||45 mm:Rapid chargingUp to 11 days in smartwatch modeUp to 8 hours in GPS mode + music40 mm:Rapid chargingUp to 10 days in smartwatch modeUp to 7 hours in GPS mode + music||Smartwatch mode: Up to 7 daysGPS mode with music: Up to 6 hoursGPS mode without music: Up to 24 hours|
|Charger Type||Proprietary 4 pin connector||Proprietary 4 pin connector|
|Charging Time||1.5 hours||2 hours|
Battery and charging conditions are quite varying for both of the devices. Talking about the Venu 2, the battery powering it is capable of pushing it to 11 days in the smartwatch mode with minimal to no use of music and GPS. When they are turned on, the watch runs only for 8 hours which makes sense as standalone GPS and music playing can be drastic for a battery’s endurance.
The smaller 40 mm variant is capable of going for 10 days in the smartwatch mode while it goes for about 7 hours in the GPS and Music mode. There is also an always-on mode but that affects the battery life too. The charging situation is quite encouraging here as they both (Venu 2 and 2S) support fast charging using the standard clip-on proprietary cable which charges it from 0 to 100 in about 1.5 hours. A 10 minutes charge will give you a day of usage in the smartwatch mode and an hour of usage in the GPS / Music mode.
Now if we compare the FR 245 Music to Venu 2, this goes slightly downhill. The same modes are present in the FR 245 but the results are quite different. In the Smartwatch mode, it can go on for about 7 days before it dies. Only GPS mode allows it to run for 24 hours while GPS with music allows it to run for about 6 hours. Sadly enough, fast charging is not supported which might act as a deal-breaker for some people.
Verdict: Which One You Should Buy?
Considering all the facts and figures in mind, the plus point FR 245 Music has, is its price. It is about 60$ cheaper than the Venu 2 but are those 60$ worth saving? You might not be able to get the Garmin Pay, some fitness features are also missing. FR 245 also lacks in the battery department. Fast charging is not supported.
In our opinion, despite the fact that the Venu 2 is a bit more expensive than the FR 245 Music, it is one of the latest the company is selling right now. The latest watch means that the software support is going to be longer than the older models, and improved hardware. As the most comprehensive and complete smartwatch out there, Venu 2 is capable of fulfilling all your needs by gaining what FR 245 Music lacks.