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Event Coverage

Hands-on with the new Garmin Fenix 5 Plus multi-sport GPS smartwatches

By Alvin Soon - 28 Jun 2018

Hands-on with the new Garmin Fenix 5 Plus multi-sport GPS smartwatches

There’s a reason why the new Garmin Fenix 5 Plus watches aren’t named the Fenix 6 to last year’s Fenix 5. Garmin sees them as complementary products and will continue selling the Fenix 5 family alongside this year’s Fenix 5 Plus watches.

The Fenix 5 Plus come in three sizes, the smallest 5S Plus (top, left), the 5 Plus (middle), and the largest 5X Plus (bottom, right).

The new Fenix 5 Plus series come with impressive updates to an excellent product. All the three variants get color maps, Garmin Pay, offline music, and multi-network satellite reception. Garmin Pay currently works here with OCBC cards. The Fenix 5 Plus series can now receive Galileo, as well as GPS and GLONASS signals. The watches work with iOS and Android smartphones.

The smallest 5S Plus (top), the 5 Plus (middle), and the largest 5X Plus (bottom) are stacked on top of each other.

The largest of the three new watches, the Fenix 5X Plus, also gets a new Pulse OX Acclimation feature. A new sensor measures pulse oxygen saturation levels or SO2. It provides a percentage value and is especially helpful for climbers or trailer runners, who have to worry about SO2 as they ascend. The 5X Plus also gains a ClimbPro page, which provides real-time information on climbs.

The Fenix 5S Plus comes in either black or rose gold.

The Fenix 5 Plus watches range in size from 42-51mm — they’re big. They’re also thick. The smallest Fenix 5S Plus has a depth of 15.4mm and weighs 65g, and the largest Fenix 5X Plus has a depth of 17.5mm and weighs 96g (the titanium version is 87g). These are rock-solid watches that you’ll want to try on for fit and comfort before you buy. In comparison, a 42mm Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) has a depth of 11.4mm and weighs 34.9g.

The watches feature Garmin’s quick-change bands, or what the company calls QuickFit. They’re easy to snap on and swap out, and there is a multitude of extra bands to choose from.

The QuickFit clasp is easy to lock and release.

The Fenix 5 Plus and 5X Plus are now available in a new diamond-like carbon (DLC) titanium finish, in addition to stainless steel. The titanium bezel variant is lighter and comes with a brushed titanium bracelet. The titanium versions look both rugged and ready for the boardroom, akin to a high-end divers’ watch. They also cost the most.

The DLC titanium bezel variant with brushed titanium bracelet is slightly lighter than their stainless steel brethen.

The Fenix 5 Plus watches cost more than the Fenix 5 watches did at launch. The 5S, for example, launched at US$600, while the 5S Plus starts at US$799.99 (their local prices are below). Part of that, Garmin says, is because of the new features.

Fenix 5 Plus Singapore pricing and availability

The Fenix 5 Plus series are expected to be available in Singapore from 1st July. Here’s how much you can expect to pay:

  • Fenix 5S Plus, black with a black band: S$1,199
  • Fenix 5S Plus, rose gold with a beige leather band: S$1,199
  • Fenix 5 Plus, sapphire DLC carbon gray with a black band: S$1,229
  • Fenix 5 Plus, sapphire carbon gray, DLC titanium with DLC titanium band: S$1,599
  • Fenix 5X Plus, sapphire DLC carbon gray with a black band: S$1,299
  • Fenix 5X Plus, sapphire carbon gray DLC titanium with a DLC titanium band: S$1,699

The Fenix 5S Plus rose gold, Fenix 5 Plus DLC titanium, and Fenix 5X Plus DLC titanium variants will also come with an extra silicone band.