What are the key differences between the Garmin Forerunner 945 and the 245?

The past few months have been very hectic for Garmin. The Forerunner 245 and Forerunner 945 are two of the numerous new smartwatches that it has brought to market so far this year under the Forerunner brand.

The first is a refreshed model of the well-known running watch that was released earlier this year in the month of April. The second is a multi-sport watch that Garmin introduced just in time for the 2019 IFA show in Berlin.

Both of these are exceptionally well-functioning, high-quality devices that come packed with a variety of features. Continue reading for a comprehensive analysis of the features and specifications of each option, which you may use if you are unsure which one is best for you.

When it comes to appearance, the Forerunner 245 and 945 are virtually identical to one another. Both of them are constructed out of fibre-reinforced polymer and include a Corning Gorilla Glass protected, sunlight-visible, transflective memory-in-pixel (MIP) display that measures 1.2 inches in diameter (30.4 millimetres). Silicone straps come standard, but you are free to swap them out for any of the other available options.

Because there are a lot of things that are the same, you are probably wondering if there is anything that is unique. To begin, there are a few things to consider.

To begin, the actual dimensions are completely different from one another. The Forerunner 245 (as well as the Music variation of this model) has dimensions of 42.3 by 42.3 by 12.2 inches (mm). The more advanced 945 model has dimensions of 47 by 47 by 13.7 millimetres to accommodate the bigger battery and more intelligent components.

Both of these gadgets only exist in one size, in contrast to the Fenix line of watches and a few of Garmin’s other models of watches. Those who have very thin wrists may consequently find that the 245 is a better option for them.

The larger form-factor of the Forerunner 945 also contributes to it having a significantly greater weight. Comparatively, the 245 weighs 38.5 grammes, while this item weighs approximately 50 grammes.

Both watches have a water-resistant rating of 5 ATM, which is very high. This indicates that they are capable of surviving depths of up to 50 metres, which should be sufficient to meet the requirements of the majority of users.


Under the hood, the Forerunner 945 has a couple of features that work to its advantage. In addition to the features found on the 245 (accelerometer, GPS/GLONASS/Galileo, Elevate wrist heart rate monitor, compass, and PulseOx), this model also includes a barometric altimeter, gyroscope, and thermometer in its standard equipment.

Aside from that, the 945 is equipped with NFC, which enables contactless payments, as well as audio storage for up to 1,000 songs. The standard version of the 245 does not come with any kind of music storage or controls, but the Music (245M) model does. It has the capacity to store up to 500 songs in its memory. Garmin Pay support for NFC is not included with either of these.

Battery life is another significant point of differentiation between the two. In smartwatch mode, the 945 has a battery life of up to 2 weeks, while the GPS mode has a life of 36 hours (without music). When compared to 7 days in smartwatch mode and 24 hours in GPS mode, the 245’s battery life is laughable (without music). Taking into consideration the other options, this is still above average in terms of quality.

Comparison of the Garmin Forerunner 945 and 245 with regard to tracking activities and intelligent features 

If you are searching for a sports watch, you should definitely consider any of these two selections. They come with the majority of the items that the normal person requires for activity tracking 24 hours a day, seven days a week, in addition to a plethora of behavioural and physiological indicators that will keep data junkies busy.

However, you should be aware that the 945 comes with certain additional features. Some people might find that these make a difference in their experience, while others might be content to do without them.

To begin, the barometric altimeter that is standard on the 945 is not included in the 245, for some reason. This indicates that there is no floor count, which is computed by calculating changes in height using air pressure and contributes to the calorie count.

Aside from the tracking of fundamental fitness metrics, it is important to emphasise that the 245 is primarily a running watch, whilst the 945 is more suitable for use across a variety of sports. However, despite the fact that the 245 comes with virtually everything you require to keep track of your running, it is missing several features that can be found on the 945.

This consists of a few Firstbeat metrics, such as acclimation to high heat and altitude, training load focus, and main benefit (Training Effect labels). These are some great add-ons, however, they are not a deal-breaker by any means. The 245 comes with a total of 11 Firstbeat functions, while the 945 comes with 18 such capabilities.

If you are interested in activities other than running, cycling, and swimming indoors, you will find that the 945, which is a multi-sport watch, will serve your needs more adequately. It supports activities such as golfing, mountain biking, swimming in open water, and more. It also comes with additional functions for outdoor recreation.

When it comes to the smart feature, the musical version of the 245 and the 945 both come with built-in storage for songs of their respective models. While the 245M can save up to 500 songs, the 945 can store up to 1,000 tracks on its internal memory. As was previously reported, the 945 is equipped with NFC for use with Garmin Pay.

Garmin Forerunner 945 versus 245: Bottom line 

If you are searching for a sports watch, you should consider purchasing either the Forerunner 245 or the Forerunner 945. Each one of them comes with a number of significant improvements over the gadgets of the previous generation.

The design of the 245 is comparable to that of the 245, but it has a smaller “footprint” and is lighter. As a result, it is more suited for people who have smaller wrists. This is primarily a running watch, but it can also track other sports like cycling and swimming indoors, as well as a variety of outdoor recreation activities including climbing, skiing, snowboarding, rowing, and kayaking.

The 945 is a fully-featured multi-sport watch with all of the necessary functions. It comes with a tonne of additional features, such as additional activity data and sports profiles, and it has approximately double the battery life of its predecessor. This gadget comes fairly close to packing all of the best features that Garmin has to offer. It should not come as a surprise that it is far more expensive.

Therefore, the most important factor in determining whether to get the 945 or not is whether or not the additional features and sports profiles are worth the additional cost. And whether or not the larger form factor is something that suits your needs.

The website of Garmin allows customers to place orders for the watches. The 945 will cost you $600 to purchase. The price of the Forerunner 245 in its ordinary configuration is $300, while the music variant costs $350. You are able to view the most recent pricing information on Amazon.

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