Skip to main content

Garmin’s Fenix 6 GPS watches harness solar power for long-lasting adventures

Garmin Fenix 6 series
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Garmin’s Fenix 5 series is known for its “won’t-quit” design that’ll endure even the most rugged backcountry adventures. So it is not surprising to see this same winning formula in the company’s newly announced Fenix 6 series of multisport GPS watches. The Fenix 6 series is more than just a clone of the Fenix 5. It’s equally as rugged but more refined than its predecessor with larger displays, longer battery life, and a new PacePro guidance feature that compensates for elevation. One of the most significant additions to the lineup is the flagship Fenix 6X Pro Solar which includes solar technology that allows you to charge without connecting to a power source.

The first thing you notice about the Fenix 6 series is its small bezel and brilliant sunlight-readable display that is up to 36% larger than previous Fenix models. Though it has a bigger screen, the Fenix 6 is 10 to 15% slimmer than the existing Fenix 5 series. With a choice of either a silicone band or a new nylon band, the 6 series has a comfortable fit that’ll make you forget you are wearing a rugged, multisport, adventure watch.

For those who struggle with battery life, the new Fenix 6 series has a customizable Power Manager feature which allows you to control the various settings that influence battery life. Users can view their predicted battery life and then adjust the battery modes to extend the life of the watch on the fly. If you need the maximum amount of battery life possible, Garmin’s Fenix 6X Pro Solar has a solar-charging glass lens that harvests the sun’s energy to give your battery a boost when you need it the most.

Most people who choose a Fenix watch for their mountain adventures will appreciate the new PacePro feature that takes into account the elevation of a course when determining their target pace and split times. It’s a smart version of pace bands used by marathon and long-distance runners. Runners can view their split times, their target split pace and how far they are ahead or behind their pace. There’s also an improved VO2 Max metric that adjusts for heat and altitude and a recovery advisor that helps balance your workout time with your rest time.

Fenix watches are known for their outstanding topographic maps, and now these maps have been expanded to include more than 2,000 ski resorts and 41,000 golf courses worldwide. The ski maps not only show the runs on each mountain, but they also include the run names and difficulty ratings. These details decrease the chance you’ll accidentally end up on Corbet’s Coulior when you wanted the bunny slope.

As it has done in the past, Garmin’s new Fenix 6 series is available in a variety of configurations and price points to accommodate a wide range of outdoor enthusiasts. The Fenix 6 and 6S are the base models, which drop music, maps, and Wi-Fi in exchange for a low starting price tag of $599. The $699-plus Pro models are the next step up and offer music, maps, and Wi-Fi on top of a solid user interface and slim, but durable design. The flagship is the $999 Fenix 6X Pro Solar which is the only model to include solar charging.

Editors' Recommendations

Kelly Hodgkins
Kelly's been writing online for ten years, working at Gizmodo, TUAW, and BGR among others. Living near the White Mountains of…
Garmin listens to feedback, adds Spotify to Fenix 5 Plus Series watch
Spotify on fenix 5 Plus and fenix 5S Plus

Garmin is rolling out Spotify support for its Fenix 5 Plus series of GPS multi-sport GPS watches, the company announced Wednesday, October 3 at a New York City event. Fenix owners can visit the online Connect IQ app store and download the Spotify app immediately. The addition of Spotify is a huge win for the smartwatch maker, which is pushing music as one of the flagship features of its Fenix 5 line of fitness trackers.

Designed for serious athlete and adventurers, the Fenix 5 Plus series launched earlier this year with integrated music, but the platform supported only iHeartRadio and Deezer. Spotify was noticeably absent -- an omission we noted in our recent review of the Fenix 5X Plus, and one that spurned consumers to band together and voice their complaints. Garmin was silent and would not say if or when the popular music service would be added to its devices. The announcement is a pleasant surprise for all Fenix 5 Plus series owners.

Read more
This $4,000 titanium beauty is the ultimate square G-Shock
The G-Shock MRG-B5000B.

Do you want the very best Casio offers in manufacturing, design, and technology from your new G-Shock, all wrapped up in that highly recognizable square case? In other words, the ultimate version of a truly classic G-Shock watch? If so, the new MRG-B5000B is exactly the model you will want, provided cost is no object. We’ve been wearing it.
What makes MR-G so special?
Although Casio is best known for tough watches that won’t break the bank, Casio also has decades of watchmaking experience, and it showcases its talents most effectively in its highly exclusive MR-G family of watches. These models, its most luxurious, are assembled by hand on Casio’s Premium Production Line located in the Yamagata factory in Japan, where only the company’s most experienced, specially certified technicians work on the top MT-G and MR-G models.

The square G-Shock is one of the most popular models, having been around since the G-Shock brand first started in the early 1980s, and bringing it to the luxury MR-G range is going to see a lot of people reaching for their wallets. What makes it so special? It’s the first time the classic, beloved square G-Shock has been given the MR-G treatment, with most other MR-G models over the past few years featuring an analog dial. There's a huge section of an already large fan base waiting for this.

Read more
Fitbit recalls Ionic smartwatch after several burn reports
best walmart deals on apple watch garmin and fitbit ionic smartwatch adidas edition ice gray silver

Fitbit Ionic smartwatch users need to stop using their devices right now. The company has recalled its Ionic wearable after over 150 reports of the watch’s lithium-ion battery overheating, and 78 reports of burn injuries to the users. It will offer a refund of $299 to the Fitbit Ionic smartwatch users who return the device.

Fitbit has received at least 115 reports in the United States and over 50 reports internationally about the Ionic smartwatch's battery overheating. It is recalling the device as there are two reports of third-degree burns and four reports of second-degree burns out of the 78 total burn injuries report.

Read more