A watch i initially thought would not be for me, but over time. It proved me wrong, at least for the most part in this video ill scientifically test. Instinct 2 from a health tracking perspective. Ill first show you the things it was good at then ill move on to the things it was mediocre at and ill close off with the things that did not do so well. For those of you that are new to the channel, my name is rob and im a postdoctoral scientist specializing in biological data analysis in this video well test the heart rate, monitoring, gps tracking oxygen saturation measurements and sleep tracking of the garmin insync 2.. Well also compare it to many of the other garmin models that were recently released. First, let me share the most important background information on this watch. In my hand, i hold the normal instinct too, without the solar charging. If you get the version with solar charging lenses, these will be able to harvest solar energy and extend the battery life. Ive run all other aspects. Both versions have exactly the same. Design and health features and should give exactly the same results in all my testing. When it comes to the battery, i found the battery life to be pretty good on the standard model already after charging it to 100 capacity. Ive been using the instinct 2 for about a week now and in that time i wore it all day and all night, and i use it for about 7 hours of gps track exercises, plus 3 hours of non gps track.
Workouts and the watch currently still holds about half its charge, the reason the battery lasts. This long is largely because of the very low powered monochrome display it uses. This display is not a touch screen, so all functionalities need to be accessed using these five buttons. However, ive not found this to be an issue and the interface is similar to most of the other new garmin watches ive tested over the last few weeks. The sensor on the back is also similar to the one used in other high end garment watches, like the epix 2 and fenix 7 series, which means at least theoretically. It should be better than the one using the garmin vivomove sport, for instance, which uses the previous generation of sensor. However, on this channel, we like to put the theories to the test. Lets start by looking at the features that perform best in my testing and close off with the things i watched it poorly at the thing i like most about this watch is its heart rate tracking ill show you the results during spinning, cycling and weight lifting to Do that ill, compare the heart rate measurements of the instinct 2 against the polar h 10 ecg chest strap, which can generally record my heart rate very accurately, well start by looking at the easiest type of exercise for a watch to track cycling indoors. Now this involves very little movement or tension on my arms and will therefore produce less noise.
Here we see an overview of that accuracy. Each dot here has a single heart rate measurement, with long the horizontal axis, the value according to the polar h10 ecg chest strap and on the vertical axis, the value. According to the instinct 2., now the darker blacker color, the more dots there are now. The blue line indicates perfect agreement and, as you can see, theres a pretty good agreement between the ecg chest strap and the instinct too, as most points, are along the blue line. However, there are still some points away from the blue line, both above it and below it, indicating it detected both too low and too high heart rate. That is because it sometimes showed a slight delay in picking up decreases in my heart rate. Here you can see my first interval spinning session with long the horizontal axis, the time and my heart rate along the vertical axis in blue. I placed my heart rate according to the polar h10 ecg chest, strap and then red is my heart rate. According to the instinct 2., as you can see, the two lines overlap mostly very well. However, there are two moments where my heart rate decreased and the instinct too showed a clear delay in picking this up. As you can see right here, im right here, we see mostly the same thing for this second ride, with mostly a very good agreement. However, there are some moments where it showed a bit of a delay.
Finally, we see the same thing for this spinning workout right here, where, for the first break, it feel to pick up on my decrease in heart rate. However, lets put this into perspective by comparing it against some of the more recently released garmin watches. Here we have the same overview plot from before on the left and the results for the 900 garmin epix 2 on the right. These two watches have similar sensors and we also see they have roughly the same results. However, the epix 2 is, of course, more than double the price. We also see mostly the same results for the phoenix 7 on the right here, which is not surprising, given its similarity to the epics 2. and also for the garmin venue, 2, plus, with similar sensors. We again see. Most of the points are along the blue line. Only the garmin vivomoo sport, which is much cheaper and as the previous generation sensors appears to perform ever so slightly worse, though, definitely still not bad and still good overall. So all these watches appear to be good enough. Attracting my indoor cycling exercises its much harder for watches to track my heart rate, accurately, while im cycling outside, because, while cycling outside theres much more movement and bumpiness and also much more tension on my wrist, making it harder for a watch to accurately attack my heart Rate, however, looking at the overview of that accuracy, the watch still performs quite well, as we can see, most points are still along the blue line, and only a few measurements are away from it.
This indicates that the watch mostly agreed with the ecg chest strap. If we look at the individual rides, we indeed see that the red line of the instinct 2 follows along quite well with the blue line of the ecg chest, strap for this second ride displayed here. This is even better with almost no deviation between the chest, strap and the watch as we can see in this third right. The largest deviations occur when there are sudden dips in my heart rate, as you can see, for instance, right here, but also right here. Im right here – and we can see the same thing during this ride with almost a perfect agreement, except for the few dips in my heart rate, as you can see right here, right here, but also a few right here. Overall, im very satisfied with the heart rate tracking during cycling. It mostly agrees well with an ecg chest, strap if we compare the overall results to the epix 2. I tested 2 weeks ago, for instance, so thats displayed right here with the instinct 2 on the left and epix 2 on the right. We see that the instinct 2 definitely showed better results in these tests. It might actually be the lower weight of the instinct 2 and a different shape of the watch band that make it more secure on my wrist and therefore provide better results. Finally, during weight lifting the instinct to did less well, but this is true for almost all of the watches ive tested so far here you can see one example weightlifting session now weight lifting is the most difficult for watches, given the tension on my wrist and arms And indeed, we see a familiar pattern.
The instinct 2 can detect my heart rate in between sets, but the moment i start a set. It cannot always keep up with the peak, in my heart rate, its still able to capture the peak, sometimes as we can see right here. However, it quite often misses the peaks, as we can see right here, which we can see even more clearly during this second weightlifting session, where it could only really follow one peak, but it missed most of them. So the heart rate tracking of the instinct 2 is quite good. I would say it does quite well during indoor and outdoor cycling and like almost any other watch, it does struggle with weightlifting still, it definitely seems to be amongst the better watches out there. If id had to rate the heart rate, tracking id give it 4 out of 5 stars, given that its very good, though not the best watch, ive tested so far now before moving to the next test, if this video is proving interesting for you, my instincts are Telling me that a sub to the channel would be amazing. The next thing the watch was quite good at is gps tracking. I tracked my ride during seven bike rides. While i was cycling to and from work, and i wanted to test two things one. How long does it take for the watch to get a gps signal and two how well the gps signals overlap when cycling the same route, multiple times that is displayed here for four times i cycled back from work? I started the activity the moment.
I was ready to leave and i did not provide the watch with any extra time to acquire the signal. The green markers indicate those moments. It connected the gps signal and, as you can see, it acquired the signals almost instantly, which is good. It needs a few seconds to get a more accurate location, but it quickly locks on and once it has the signal they overlap quite well in general, as you can see here, for instance, and sometimes very good, as you can see right here, for instance, however, there Are some moments with a bit more deviation and one example of that is right here you can see that the signals disperse quite a bit, but generally, i would say they overlap quite well. Of course, this is just a qualitative comparison, but if i compare it, for instance to the epics 2 and phoenix 7, it seems to be deviating its signals ever so slightly more. That might be just by chance. Looking at cycling to work, we see mostly the same thing. The signals are acquired quickly and the signals overlap quite well. For the most part, though, there is some deviation, as we can see here, for instance, but sometimes they agree almost perfectly, as you can see right here, for instance, and also right here, its quite good, though here again theres a bit more deviation, so the performance is Potentially less good than that of garmins top models, the epics 2 and phoenix 7.
Overall id also give the gps tracking of the instinct to 4 out of 5 stars. Since it requires a signal quite quickly and is pretty consistent, though some other watches appear to be slightly better, so these were the two best performing features of the instinct 2 in my testing. One other feature it was ok at though potentially not great, is the oxygen saturation or spo2 measurements. Over the last week, i measured my oxygen saturation at ground level in the morning and evening using the instinct 2.. At the same time, i also recorded my oxygen saturation using a dedicated fingerprint exhibitor, whereas my heart rate is generally measured with green light, red and infrared light. I use to measure oxygen saturation at ground level. My oxygen saturation should be within my normal range, which is generally between 97 and 100 percent and should not fall below roughly 95. Here i displayed the results of the test on the left, are 24 measurements taken with the instinct 2 and on the right matching measurements taken with the fingerprint exhibitor. As you can see, the instinct 2 is generally within a normal range of spo2 values. However, it does detect relatively low values compared to the fingerprint exhibitor, however, to be sure of the accuracy of the instinct, 2 id have to test the oxygen saturation measurements in a low auction environment at some point still, as far as i can judge the spu2 measurements Taken by the instinct 2 are in a realistic range, though, on the low end, so id give the spo 2 measurements 3 out of 5 stars now the thing i found the instinct 2 to be worse that – and this might not come as a surprise, is the Sleep stage tracking, like most new garmin watches, the instinct 2, has advanced sleep stage, monitoring which tracks your sleep stages, oxygen, saturation of the blood and your breathing rate to check.
If the instinct 2 can detect, my sleep stages are compared to an eeg device called the dream: 2 headband that can actually measure my brain waves and has been shown to be relatively reliable at sleep stage tracking – and here i show an overview of those sleep test – Results for getting an overall impression of how well the instinct 2 performs the dream. 2 headband should likely be good enough. However, the gold standard would be polysomnography which id also like to try on the instinct 2 in the future. Now, on top are the sleep stages, as recorded by the eeg device on the left, the sleep stages, as recorded by the instinct 2. I were both the eeg device and the instinct 2 to bed for 5 nights and ill see how close the predictions of the instinct 2 are to those of the eeg device. Now each column here sums to 100, meaning that we can see what percentage of each of the sleep stages. According to the dream, 2 was predicted as a sleep stage by the instinct 2.. If they perfectly agree, all values on the diagonal should be 100. First of all, we see that only ‘ of what was deep sleep according to the eeg device was also deep sleep according to the instinct 2., most of what the eeg device identified as being deep sleep was actually detected by the instinct too. As light sleep. Now this is not very good and it actually gets a bit worse for 2 out of 5 knights, the instinct 2 detected no deep sleep at all and one example knight is displayed right here.
On top, we have the sleep stages according to the dream: 2eg headband, with the clock time on the horizontal axis and the sleep stages on the vertical axis on the bottom is a similar plot. But now for the instinct 2 ive highlighted all the eeg recorded deep sleep in purple here, as you can see, the instinct 2 did not detect any of this deep sleep or any deep sleep at all. For that matter. We see this same thing for this second example knight right here, where no deep sleep at all was detected by the instinct 2.. Now the deep sleep detection does not appear to be very good, but the light sleep detection appears to be okayish light. Sleep agreed with the eeg device at about 57. If they did disagree, this was mostly by the instinct 2 predicting ram sleep ram. Sleep also did not agree very well between the eeg device and instinct 2.. Only 35 percent of what the eeg device marked as ram sleep, was also marked as ram sleep by the instinct 2.. A larger percentage was actually classified as light sleep by the instinct 2.. Take this example knight, for instance, in red. I marked a ram sleep as recorded with the eeg device and, as you can see, theres only a marginal agreement. At best between both devices. You go through roughly four to six sleep cycles, each night, each one, starting with light sleep and deep sleep which is marked in blue and each one ending in rem.
Sleep marked in red, as you can see, i likely had four complete sleep cycles. This night, the one could argue at 5 and because the ram sleep detection by the instinct 2 does not seem great. I would judge that we cannot see the sleep cycles based on just the data from the instinct 2. awake detection did show a relatively high agreement with the eeg device at over 80 percent. If the instinct 2 did classify awake time as something else in the eeg device, this was mostly as light sleep which makes sense. Given that light sleep is the closest sleep stage to being awake, as you can see, martial and green. The awakening i had was indeed also detected by the instinct 2, but a lot of extra awake moments were also detected. We see mostly the same thing for this knight right here. The one clear awake mode i had was also detected by the instinct 2, but it did judge it to last longer and it also detected some extra awake moments. So this does not bode well for the instinct 2 when it comes to sleep stage tracking. However, it is good to put these results into perspective. This graph shows an overview of the agreement of different watches with the eeg device along the horizontal axis. We have the average agreement over the four individual sleep stages and on the vertical axis we have the agreement of the worst sleep stage, the better the agreement, the more to the top right of the device is and, as you can see, the best agreeing devices include Different fitbits, in this case the fitbit sends inspire 2 in charge 5.
The root strap 3.0 4.0 and the widthing sleep analyzer, as you can also see the garmin fenix 7 epics, 2 venue, 2 and venue 2 plus do not show a high level of agreement. However, the garmin view moves. Sport does quite well, as you can see up here. This is the only garmin device, ive tested so far. That does quite well at sleep tracking. If we now plot the garmin instinct two in the same plot, we see that it is quite close to the test results. I got for my second round of testing of the phoenix 7 both have an average agreement over the 4 stages of about 55. Now this is still not very good compared to some of the better devices out there, which are closer to 70 or 75. Now, based on these results, i would say that the sleep stage tracking of the instinct 2 is not very good and generally very similar to many of the other garmin devices i recently tested. The main thing i would use it for is tracking my total time and bet, since it does seem to be quite okay, detecting the moment you fall asleep and the moment you wake up. Therefore, overall id give the sleep tracking of the instinct to 2 out of 5 stars. Initially, i did not think id like the garmin instinct too much taking it out of the box. It somehow felt somewhat cheap and i did not like the look ive having used it for a while.
The watch grew on me and i actually started to like the way it looked and i quite enjoyed using it. I also really appreciate the great battery life and the fact that i did not have to think much about charging it based on my experience. So far, overall id give the watch 3.5 stars. It has pretty good heart rate, tracking and gps tracking, whereas the main thing it does not do so well is sleep stage tracking. So if you care about heart rate tracking, it seems to be a solid choice. Speaking of heart rate, im currently testing the huawei watch gt runner, which is very similar to the huawei gt3, which had amazing heart rate tracking check out that video right here. The apple watch is still the undefeated heart rate king. If you want to see more, you can find those videos right here ill, also link the recent reviews added on other garmin watches right here now. I hope this video provided you with some value.XEPjAS7MWP0