(Pocket-lint) – Garmin has significantly expanded its range of fitness-tracking smartwatches over the past few years to include a number of different styles and shapes.
One of the newer watches is the Venu Sq 2, this is the second generation of its square Venu model with an AMOLED display, and is one of the few Garmin wrist gadget models that does not have round wallpaper.
We got our hands on IFA 2022 to see what this affordable new rectangular watch has to offer.
With its relatively low starting price, handy square AMOLED display and a comprehensive feature list of Garmin’s greatest hits, there’s a lot to like about the new Venu Sq 2.
It might not have the most exciting or premium build quality, but with support for things like Body Battery, Garmin Coach, and the full range of different workout types, it looks like it could be excellent value for money.
- Affordable price
- Bright, easy-to-read display
- 11 day battery life
- Water resistance 5ATM
- Not the most premium build quality
- If you want music support, it costs extra
- Square design – 5ATM waterproof
- Corning Gorilla Glass 3 lens
- 40.6 x 37.0 x 11.1mm – 38g
- Silicone Strap – Fiber Reinforced Polymer Case
Design-wise, the Venu Sq 2 is a fairly simple watch built out of plastic or – what Garmin calls it – fiber-reinforced polymer. This is a similar material to what it uses on some of its other non-metallic watches, and it’s generally a durable, long-lasting case material.
It is offered in six different colors. Three for the slightly more expensive music edition and three for non-music. The unit we reviewed is the French gray case and silicone strap, but there are also black, white and mint green offerings.
The first thing we noticed picking it up and wearing it was how simple the design is (not in a bad way) and how lightweight it is. You can practically ignore it’s on your wrist thanks to its 38g weight. It is much lighter than larger, more expensive models like the Fenix or Epix.
The Venu Sq 2 also has two buttons on the side, which work with the touchscreen on the front to control the interface.
As for durability, like most Garmin sports watches, it’s 5ATM water resistant, so you can wear it in the rain, shower, take it swimming and just live with it, without worrying that it is damaged by moisture.
The silicone strap is soft and flexible, with plenty of clasp holes for adjustment, so it should fit many different wrist sizes. Plus, it has a universal 20mm fitting, so you can swap it out for another strap at any time.
Display and battery
- 1.41 inch rectangular screen
- 320×360 resolution
- 11 days of autonomy – 26 hours of GPS tracking
Less than the standard Venu range, the Venu Sq has a square screen, which means that the contents of this screen seem to have a little more room to breathe, and makes text and menus a little easier to read.
Like the round displays on the other Venus, this is a bright AMOLED display, which means the colors are really vibrant, especially compared to the quieter Memory-in-Pixel displays you find on many other Garmin models.
The added contrast and depth of the screen’s black and dark elements add to this feeling that this is also an easy-to-read screen. On the face of it, it’s not the fastest or smoothest display we’ve ever seen, but that’s okay. And we wouldn’t expect super smooth frame rates on such an affordable watch, especially not with the battery life promised here.
Garmin suggests that you can get around 11 days of battery from the new Venu Sq 2 when using it in smartwatch mode. This means that even if you use it to track your daily exercise with GPS, you probably won’t need to charge more than once a week.
Plus, Garmin has endurance athletes in mind too, and says you can do 26 hours of continuous GPS tracking activity with the second-gen Venu Sq before you have to plug it back in.
Fitness, features and health tracking
- All-day heart rate, sleep, stress and Spo2 tracking
- Body Battery Metric
- Garmin Coach Support
- Music editing offers offline playlists
Let’s move on to the most important health and – of course – we cannot test the accuracy of this in a short practical period. But, this Venu Sq 2’s feature list means it should match most of Garmin’s other offerings in terms of what it can track and how it presents that data to you.
The company has brought things like the Body Battery graph to the watch which analyzes your activity and rest to determine how much you have left in your figurative tank. That – of course – also means it can track your sleep each night if you want, and track your heart rate throughout the day, using that data to determine stress levels as well.
There’s also a Pulse Ox sensor for blood oxygen saturation, a menstrual cycle or pregnancy tracking feature, plus various breathing exercises and a “fitness age” metric that rates your performance to determine fitness. of your body.
It is a very complete offer, which we have appreciated for a long time on the Garmin product line.
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As for activity tracking and training, you can engage in a number of sport modes, including the usual run, walk, bike, strength, HIIT, and cardio, as well as preload different workouts to track on your wrist or even start a Garmin run. Training plan to improve your running speed or just train to reach a specific distance.
Another thing to note: music editing. If you want music loaded onto your watch from services like Spotify, Deezer, and Amazon Music, you’ll need to shell out an additional $50 to get the Music Edition watch.
Garmin’s latest watch offers all the essentials and in-depth fitness capabilities you expect, but in a watch that doesn’t cost the earth.
Written by Cam Bunton.