Garmin Instinct // The Review – The Adventure GPS Sports Watch

Comprehensive review of the Garmin Instinct – a durable, GPS sports watch with a design unlike most Garmin wearables. Get it here:

Heart-rate straps I recommend:

DC Rainmaker’s Analyzer:

Thanks for watching!

/// GEAR I USE ///
Favorite Wearable:
Bike GPS: &
Adventure GPS:


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Jim Lombardo says:

How was the swimming accuracy? The vivoactive 3 fails at accurately counting laps/distance. This any better?

terermate says:

great video

Mark Pape says:

I thought your review was spot on. I have bought my own Instinct and so far so good. I did battle to get used to the button arrangement after using a forerunner 230 touch screen, but once you got it you’re fine. Be aware that the device remembers which section you are in so you need to tap out of the current section before default buttons will work. Use the bottom right button to get back to ‘home”

Kadir Şen says:

The video intro is so epic 🙂

Does instinct share the same generation wrist sensor with vivoactive 3 ? My experiences are the same with you in terms of wrist hr performance. For steady state cardio it’s great, but for intervals and weight lifting so bad. And It looks like hr performance hasn’t improved with Instinct.

Gabriel Martins says:

Nice job, great review. Just a question, for the same price around 285€ what is the best option, the instinct or the Fenix 3? For running, trail running cycling. Thanks

Homer J says:

Anybody know the name of the intro track ?

Lancer Shade says:

Wanna make this thing more crazy? Garmin should copy 70% of casio gshock square design.

Clayton Parkinson says:

An extremely underrated feature of this watch is the comfort. Ive had Suunto, Fenix 5, and other watches and its unbelievable how light and comfortable this watch is!

Sanju H says:

Lovely Review… A question, what would you suggest if the option were between Amazfit stratos and Garmin Instinct. Pls advise. More towards the running side.

Nicola Prosdocimi says:

Hi, can I insert gpx tracks for mtb?

Ivan Prskalo says:

Thank you for this review. Could you please review some Garmin competition like Suunto and others?

Mark Pape says:

@Desfit is it possible to use a chest heart rate monitor from the old forerunner 230 with the Instinct?

Azzam Azzame says:

Can you review the coros apex ???

Guacamole and Foliage says:

Nicely done!! Can you recover alerts (such as hitting your targeted distance) in the pool??

360nohope says:

still extremely expensive. for the same price you can get a galaxy watch. it’s not the same concept but still.
Very good review!

Paul Kelly says:

Great work Des. Any news on how the kayak function works? Thanks

Malte M says:

That thing is perfect…but there is no music storage! Do people realy don’t need that? I would love to leave my phone (and cables off course) behind for so many activities but most watches that offer all i need lack in the music departement.

J P says:

Music storage would be awesome

Joe T. says:


Outdoor Gold says:

Great Review! AND I want to congratulate you on 30K!!! Always fun to watch your vids, the hard work, and the great content you put forward!

C Hodg says:

What was the song at the beginning?

Manuel Reichel says:

Thanks for the video 😉
Which Fenix5plus watchface do you use? It looks fantastic.

T C says:

Would you say the HR (on wrist) is more accurate/responsive than the 935 or Fenix 5? I have an AW4 now but don’t enjoy 1.5 day battery life. However, the HRM accuracy and responsiveness on the AW4 is very impressive. I do more interval type workouts. I am OK paying for the F5 if the HRM and GPS are as good as the Instinct. Thank you for the work that you do.

Kyle Gonyer says:

On a walk or hike or bike can way points be marked?

paul barton says:

Can’t help but think of a square peg in a round hole when I look at that screen.

Edward Baran says:

I would love to have this one but due to restricted budget, i got myself the Amazfit Stratos 2 instead

Damian Daniels says:

Would have been good to compare price points

sunil kumar says:

Hello Des, I’m a outdoor runner and will start preparing for triathlon very soon. Is there any reason why Garmin 735xt and not instinct .

Sergio Lj says:

I have a question that does not regard the instinct only , it is because i always wondered if for example to the heart rate strap to be used with garmin needs to be the garmin one or for instance i can get the polar one and pair it and be just fine ( mainly because i hear lots of good stuff about the polar chest straps , whereas not much about the garmin ones).

Tracy Krznar says:

There is no reason to dis the Fenix line. It is well worth budgeting and paying for.

Russell Giesey says:

Great review man. For what the product is you hit it right on the nail head. The features that it provides for the price paid makes it a great unit. Next time I see you on Mill Creek I’ll say hello. Happy Trails

Calle N says:

Good review, thanks!
I’m very pleased with my watch and it works so much better than my previous Fenix 5. The display is more readable in especially low light conditions and the range of BT and ANT+ is way better. The only complaint as you mentioned is that it underestimate meters climbed, quite a bit actually. I don’t miss connect IQ at all.

frogwater09 says:

Will it work with extended display on Garmin cycle computer?

Ali Helmy says:

Hey Des, loved the review, specially about swimming, and I appreciate it. How about just regular watch functions though? How easy is it to see time in a different time zone and to quickly start the stopwatch (my absolutely cant live without features). Secondly, is it possible to disable the GPS, heart rate and bluetooth to extend the battery for some time and is it easy to turn them back on (HR & GPS) just around the activity?

Dav1ez says:

My next purchase!

Max Fireman says:

I tried one but couldn’t get past the poor notification system. It will still notify you if the phone screen is on (really?) and every notification is always 2 vibrations. Also you have to click the notification to get more info. Just annoying. Back to the pebble. Great review Des

Kiinjja says:

What is the best watch or smartwatch for lifeguards?

Bagus Indra Ardiyanto says:

Does it receive notification from apps in our phone? Like whatsapp, instagram, etc

Michael DeAmicis says:

Still searching for the best swim tracker.

Brandon Barry says:

Great review. I also see the altimeter recording low but it appears to get the highs and lows correct but does too much smoothing between points. So on a decent it does not show all the bumps. Try comparing the the altimeter graph from the device and then use the elevation correction in Garmin connect. This is quite consistent for most of my activities with the device. Also have an old fenix and find the difference between the figures recorded on this and the corrected figure much closer.

Rob Gillingwater says:

Great review and great music too

T C says:

Just a thought.. reviews keep mentioning the long band. Could this be for putting over ski/hunting jackets for trips in the woods?

El Jefe says:

are smart watches with a solar panel a thing ? it should be ! like protrek ?

Anthony Micci says:

Can you get your fitness age in the Garmin app using this watch?

Athan Datu says:

Does it pair well with the Garmin HRM Tri strap? Thanks

Jelmer van der Burg says:

Can you replace the bands?

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