These are two the best Garmin watches available, and both offer a good combination of everyday smart watch functions, advanced fitness tracking, and a live AMOLED display. While the original Venu is only available in one size, the Venu 2 offers two options, including a 40mm model, which is a good choice for smaller wrists.
In terms of fitness tracking, the newer Garmin Venu 2 is more capable of the two, adding more information to your wrist. It allows you to take a two-minute health snapshot at any time, includes women’s health monitoring, and displays a ‘muscle map’ graphic that shows you the key muscle groups you’ve exercised, and helps you plan your next session. It also has several new training tracking facilities, including special options for hiking, climbing and boulders. If you enjoy outdoor activities, it should be the best choice.
However, the price difference must be taken into account. Venu 2 is more expensive than the original Venu, and the older watch is often discounted from third-party dealers, making it even more affordable.
Read more about the main differences so you can choose the Venu menu that suits you.
- Garmin Venu 2 a little more expensive with the release
- Garmin Venu is often available from third-party dealers
The Garmin Venu was released in September 2019 and was priced at $ 349.99 / £ 329.99 / $ 649. It’s often available at a discount from third-party retailers like Amazon, and we’ll probably see good deals Amazon’s main day and Black Friday if you are willing to wait that long.
The Garmin Venu 2 was launched in April 2021 and was priced at $ 399.99 / £ 349.99 / $ 629 for both 40mm and 45mm case sizes.
Design and presentation
- Very similar design
- Same materials
- Venu 2 is available in two sizes
The original Garmin Venu is available in only one case size (43.2 mm), while the Venu 2 is available in 40 and 45 mm versions. The smaller model is known as the Garmin Venu 2S and is a good choice for smaller wrists.
The housings of both devices are made of a fiber-reinforced polymer with an intelligent stainless steel frame. Standard straps are made of silicone, but straps made of other materials can be purchased separately if you want a different look.
Both devices are controlled by a touch screen and two physical buttons on the right. The lower of these goes back in the menus, while the upper is context sensitive depending on the application or widget you are using. Its current function is indicated by a small icon.
Choosing a case size means little variation in weight. The Garmin Venu weighs 46.3 g, the Venu 2 is 49 g and the Venu 2S is 38.2 g.
- Both watches have AMOLED displays
- All monitors are high resolution
- Only Venu 2 always has an on mode
Both the Garmin Venu and Garmin Venu 2 feature AMOLED displays that are bright and vivid in all lighting conditions, but only the Venu 2 has an always-on feature that makes it easy to view statistics at a glance (low cost) battery life).
Whichever clock you choose, the pixel density is about the same. The original Venu screen is 30.4 mm in size and has a resolution of 390 x 390 pixels. The 45 mm Venu 2 has a screen of 33 mm, a resolution of 416 x 416 pixels, while the 40 mm Venu 2S has a 27.9 mm screen and a resolution of 360 x 360 pixels.
The amount of information displayed on the screen at one time is limited by the size of the screen, but all three options are sharp and clear.
- The battery life of the Venu 2 is much longer than that of the original Venu
- Venu 2 has an optional power saving mode
- The battery life of the Venu 2S is slightly shorter than that of the larger Venu 2
The battery life of the Garmin Venu 2 is much more impressive than that of the original Venu. It also has a new power-saving mode that allows it to go even longer between charges by sacrificing a few clocks for more advanced features.
The original Venu can operate for up to five days in smart watch mode and up to six hours in GPS mode with music.
Venu 2 lasts up to 11 days in smart watch mode, which can be extended to 12 days in battery saving mode. It can operate for up to eight hours in GPS mode with music and up to 22 hours in GPS mode without music.
The Venu 2S has a slightly smaller battery than the full-size version. It can operate for up to 10 days in smart watch mode or up to 11 days when power saving is enabled. You can train in GPS mode and with music for up to seven hours or up to 19 hours with GPS alone.
- Both support apps from Garmin Connect IQ
- Venu 2 has much more music storage space
The Garmin Venu and Venu 2 are both compatible with iOS and Android smartphones, and allow you to download more apps and dials through the Garmin Connect IQ Store.
You can receive smartphone app, call, and SMS notifications either from the clock, and Android device owners can also send text responses or reject calls with a text response (especially handy during workouts).
Both the Garmin Venu and Venu 2 include internal storage for music, but the Venu 2 has much more capacity. The original Venu has room for up to 500 songs, and Venu 2 can store up to 2,000 songs. You can control your phone’s music player to either watch or stream songs from Amazon Music or Deezer once you’ve installed the appropriate app via Garmin Connect IQ.
Both devices allow you to make contactless payments via NFC (provided your bank has one of the supported).
- Venu 2 offers additional outdoor training facilities
- Venu 2 has ‘muscle maps’ for training
- Venu 2 has improved menstrual monitoring
The Garmin Venu and Garmin Venu 2 offer a similar range of training tracking modes, but the Venu 2 also includes dedicated facilities for hiking, climbing and boulders.
Venu 2 also includes a “muscle map” graphic that shows you the main muscle groups you’ve worked on and helps you plan your next session. Both also support downloadable workout plans as well as customizable workouts.
Both Venu and Venu 2 are ANT + compatible, so you can synchronize data with additional sensors such as chest strap heart rate monitors or cycling power meters. They are also compatible golf watches when the Garmin Golf app is installed on your phone
For training safety, both watches offer a Livetrack, so a friend or family member can track your progress via GPS as well as event detection, which sends a message with your GPS location to the emergency contact if it detects a drop and doesn’t cancel the alarm.
Owners of all Garmin devices can monitor the menstrual cycle through Garmin Connect, but Venu 2 allows you to write symptoms to the device itself through an optional widget available in the action menu. This is even more detailed than a tool for women Garmin Lily.
Both watches have stress monitoring throughout the day, but with Garmin Venu 2 you can also take a “snapshot” at any time. Just select an option on the clock screen, then hold for two minutes for the device to record statistics, including average heart rate, stress level, and respiratory rate.