No, no really theyve actually expanded it like now. Its bigger. This is the Garmin Instinct, 2X and youd be mistaken for thinking the only difference is the size, because in reality this is more like a Garmin Instinct 2.5 than it is a Garmin Instinct 2.. It includes a number of both new hardware and software features that take it even closer to the Phoenix lineup than ever before. As always, Ive been putting this to the test, checking out what works well and not so well, across hiking and swimming and biking and running and cycling, in virtually everything else in between over the last couple months. So with that Ill, just dive straight into it. The very first thing to know is the price and for once its a good thing, the price is actually not changing at all. The price here is 449 US Dollars the same price as the rest of the existing Instinct 2 Series, thats, pretty notable because in all past cases the x is very intended to be more expensive than the rest of the series. Garmin has used the X variant on their watch, their Phoenix lineup watches for years in the past, theres always been something like the Phoenix 7s for the smallest Edition. The Phoenix 7 is a middle one and then the Phoenix 7x is the largest Edition. Now, for the Instinct 2 Series, the case sizes arent as big as the Phoenix series, theyre 40, 45 and 50 millimeters so again, smaller than the 42 47 and 52 millimeters of the Phoenix 7 Series.
As such, this watch doesnt feel as big as a phoenix 7 Series watch would because its well its smaller its also lighter as well, making a little bit more manageable for folks that want some of those higher end features, but dont want the size with it. Speaking of the size, the display here goes from 0.9 inches to a 1.1 inch display. It is a monochrome display, theres, no color, on this, its not a touch screen display. This is all about battery performance and extra long battery life and, to the end, this solar panel, there has increased by 50 percent over the previous Edition and as such, youre going to get a heck of a lot longer battery life. You can see the battery chart right here in the screen uses official specs well talk about real world uses in just a second as well, oh, and note that there is an instinct 2x tactical Edition that costs 50 bucks more 4.99. That includes a stealth mode. Basically, some kind of more tactical features, as well as a green backlight option too. Now. The first notable new hardware feature is the flashlight. You can see it says torch right there. If I go ahead and just simply double tap, this itll turn on the torque. In this case, its red, because thats what I had configured last, I can just long hold, though, to change it and go up here to torch, and you can see theres a red option and then theres a one level.
Brightness two levels, three levels and four levels of brightness. I can tap this to turn it off and if you look at the glass right there, you can see the two white lights as well as the red light. Now the torch is pretty darn bright, its more than enough to illuminate a room without any problems. Garmin says its the same: flashlight technology youll find in the Phoenix 7x series, but actually more like the Enduro 2 Series, which a little bit better flashlight than the Phoenix 7x. The difference, however, is that this little beam area here is more narrow and, as such, itll be more focused in the kind of a broader flashlight of the Enduro, 2. and thats again, because this case is smaller than the Enduro 2 case. However, I actually find it most useful, just like daily mundane sort of tasks like getting around around the house, the middle of the night, checking on the kids, the middle of the night. Using that red light option is great. Its not super bright Ive been traveling, a ton lately so be able to like navigate foreign hotel rooms at three in the morning. That kind of stuff is kind of useful with this, as opposed to finding my phone and doing all that kind of job. In addition to that, theres also a strobe mode. So if we go back here, youll see down there in the controls menu strobe and these are different, strobe settings.
I can turn this on right. There. You can see theres a blink option, theres a custom option. I can customize that if I want to theres a blitz option, a beacon and post and were back to Blink in addition in running mode, you can actually have this time to your running cadence. If youd like as well. That way, you know other people could see if youre running, perhaps on the side of a road or something like that and you dont have a light at night. You should by the way, but if you dont and at least people can maybe see that little light there and then one final Illuminating item. If you are finding this video instrumentally useful, if you can whack that like button the bottom there, it really does help with this video and the channel quite a bit now. The next big ticket Hardware item is the addition of multi band or dual frequency GPS. This is considered kind of like the Holy Grail GPS. Yes, these days and it basically increases the accuracy of GPS, especially in harder, more challenging locations, for example in downtown New York City or up in the mountains, underneath cliff, overhangs and stuff, like that and in my testing, its pretty solid Ill, save all the GPS accuracy For later on this review, but this is a huge step up over the existing Instinct 2 Series units which do not have that. Note, though, that this is not half sat, IQ sat iqs, garmins, satellite technology that will automatically go up to multi band GPS, which ruins more battery life and then go down to the regular GPS modes when theres no need for that, for example, if my middle, like Farm roads, you dont need multi band GPS, it just burns a heck of a lot of battery life, the fun of it.
This watch does not have the hardware cable to be able to go ahead and switch between those different modes dynamically. So you kind of have to choose for that particular sport profile, which mode you want and the battery implications of that now. The last Hardware change before we dive into all the big software changes is actually a software change dependent on Hardware, which is the ability to see Lux hours. You can actually see it right now on this watch face up at the top there 1′ 000 hours. I spent most my day indoors but went out briefly here and you can see. Ive got quite a bit of sun from that. I can also tap down there and see the solar intensity as before, but then here I can see the Lux hours. This is not on existing Instinct 2 Series units because theres some Hardware differences under the covers that enable them to pull this off now, as with other Garmin solar devices, theres, basically, two types of solar panels. On top of this, the first one is on the outside edges: that kind of like radish area, that you can see there, that is a 100 photovoltaic level now theres, some like technical Nuance to that, but just for simplicitys sake, its capturing 100 of the suns goodness And converting it into battery power, but then over the rest of the display, theres, also a solar panel as well at 10. So, in that case, its only capturing 10 of the energy but its a much bigger panel, because its over the entire thing and those two things combine, give you 50 percent more solar panel than existing Instinct 2 Series units do, which is a pretty big jump up And again contributing that battery life chart that we saw just a second ago now, if you see my Garmin Edge series devices using the solar panels on those devices, youll know that on those devices it frankly doesnt mean a whole lot, its like trivial and almost gimmicky, Not quite gimmicky, but like really close to gimmicky.
However, on the Instinct series devices, because these have such low power draws, the solar panel is legit realsies like it. Actually, you can go into unlimited mode where you never have to plug this in anymore, depending on your GPS usage, if youre doing multiband GPS, then I promise you youll be plugging this in because Ive been plugging it in doing multiple band GPS, but if youre not Doing that you can go for many many many many weeks I without ever actually plugging this in now. Lets look at the biggest software feature on this, and this is something thats going to remain. According to Garmin exclusive to the instant into X Series, which is the addition of training readiness, a training readiness has garmins umbrella like basically metric for whether or not you are ready to train exactly. As a name implies, it has a couple of core components underneath it. So if I tap into this right here, you can see my training. Readiness level is 48, just in The Fringe of going up to the next bucket there, and I can go down here and I can see the factors theres sleep its upset about my uh four hours of sleep last night, but down below that recovery time, Im full Recover for my last workout, my HRV status is in here and Im in the balance, but something on the lower edge of that which is kind of understandable. And then my cute load is low because in the last couple days, Ive been ramping down a little bit of training trying to get all these reviews out the door.
In addition, not shown in here is also your stress history and your sleep history, a Garmin says these widget like glance sections down here, arent built out for those quite yet as part of one of the factors, but behind the scenes it is still taking that into Account now this is different than something like trading status, which you would have seen in the past. If I go back here, one more time or up and down One Direction, you can see training status there thats, where youd see productive, maintaining unproductive. That is more about your training like load and schedule versus training. Readiness is looking at sort of your life and your training load and figuring out. Should you be doing that next big workout, or are you ready to do that next, Big Workout versus training status is more about? Are the types of workouts youre doing beneficial to? Ideally your training goals or kind of making you more and more fit training readiness was something that was launched about a year ago on the 400, 255 and 955, and now weve seen it on virtually all of garments. Hiring watches from roughly 350 and up the exemptions to that being are the exceptions to that being the venue 2 Series, as well as the Instinct 2 Series, when at least that box has been checked now for the Instinct 2x. But it does seem really weird to me that, given these are all the same price, its not coming to the Instinct too, like I dont – does not compute in my brain now.
Another new feature coming into the Instinct 2x from those other watches, is the morning reports. Each morning, when you wake up youll, see basically a good morning message: itll show you kind of your summary. From last night, your sleep history from sample youll see the upcoming daily workouts, whether it be daily, suggested, workouts or ones that youve pre scheduled, as well as the weather and your training readiness level as well as your HRV status. You can customize whats shown on there. You can get rid of it entirely if you dont want it there, but people tend to like I like it, its just a quick little glance at the day. Now, let me just talk about three areas. Really quick before we talk about accuracy, Im going to talk about user interface, Im going to talk, sport modes and navigation and navigations got a gotcha. I want to kind of dive into briefly so this is the watch face right here. It is fully customizable. You can customize the components on change. Different watch faces also download third party watch faces from garmins connect.q App Store, but if I tap on down here, these are the widget glances each one of these we saw earlier on. I can tap into, for example, the weather right now I can see the weather outside. I can go down, look the hourly weather daily weather, the daily Trend and the air quality index. This is for all these are customizable, so I can rearrange these.
I can add, and remove ones, add third party ones. You can see these different ones. There HRV status Sunrise last sport steps heart rate, all the data from this, whether it be steps or sleep or any of these things are synced automatically to your phone. With the Garmin Connect Mobile app. You can see some screenshots right here. Some different kind of random things there so its all kind of done behind the scenes using Bluetooth on your phone and Bluetooth in this watch next to go ahead and start a workout youll go back here and tap the upper right hand button. At this point, you can choose one of the sport profiles, theres tons and tons of sport profiles, even some new ones here with the Instinct 2x, including Optical course, racing mode and then coming a little firmware update, will also be a boxing and an MMA sport profile. Those arent here today, but they will be here soon. Each of these sport profiles can be customized both with data pages and the data fields within them. You can customize it on the watch itself or you can customize it using the Garmin Connect Mobile app once youve chosen a given sport profile, you can tap into that. Youll then see the daily suggested workout for that particular sport profile. In this case, just running or or cycling – and this is automatically generated or itll, pull from anything Ive got on my structured calendar and those are all calendar items I can put on there from Garmin connects app tons of free training plans, and things like that.
If I can cancel out of that, though, Im down to the timer page here and now, Im going to go ahead and start my particular workout once Im out rotting or running or hiking or swimming or whatever it may be, you can go ahead and see all This information in real time and you can also transmit via live track to your friends and family. As long as your phone is within range of the watch, itll send them a link, then go ahead and see basically your course profile. They can see where you are. They can even see your heart rate and your power numbers and your paces and all that kind of fun stuff I automatically have my watch – send that to my wife every time I start a workout, so she can see where I am, and vice versa. Now, once your workouts are complete, itll go ahead and show you a summary screen or a bunch of summary screens. In fact, and then all the information gets transmitted to the Garmin Connect the platform, the mobile phone, app all the things and then from there on any third party apps like Strava training Peaks and whatever else you got connected to your account. Now, if I wanted to follow a course or route in my workout, I can do that. So I hold this left hand button right there and I go down into navigation and then I have a bunch of different options in my case, youre most likely just going to use courses, but you could follow a past activity.
Go to a save location. Go to a pair of coordinates in this case someone go back to courses and I can go down here and load a given course up. So Im gon na load up one lets see here. We go this one right here, this hike, I did a couple weeks ago, cracked that open about 24K, so uh roughly like 17 miles 15 miles. Something like that, and I can look at this course here. I can see the map for the course right here. I can also go down here and look at the elevation plot as well. You can see that right there and if I go back here, I can go ahead and do the course itself now. This is where the catch is and because right there youll see 50 course Point Max exceeded 66 course. Points will not be shown. Remember this is only a 25k or whatever so was uh hike a run. So roughly more than half of the course isnt shown. So like it can only do about 12K on this particular hike. What that means is that it will not give you turn by turn. Instructions will not tell you when to turn itll still show you the breadcrumb trail. You can see a picture of that right now. On the screen throughout the entire course, but it wont tell you that hey you should have turned back there on that trail, it will theyll go ahead and give you an off course warning after you go buy that point for about 50 meters.
Now, from a practical standpoint, this doesnt usually matter as much to me if Im hiking because of the fact that definitely its a lot slower movement and you kind of see those Trail options coming up versus if Im cycling, whether it be mountain biking or Road biking. Having an alert me of the changes to my trail is actually kind of important thatll blow past it and have to go back its a typical mess either way. This is absolutely bonkers. The fact that this cant do more than a 12K course in 2023, like what garmins competitors like pseudo and everyone else could have done this 15 years ago on all the devices and this cant do this on a 400 500 watch and garmins own other watches can Do this, just not the Instinct series look, this is a software design issue and Garmin needs to fix it, and this has been an issue for years in the Instinct, but as the Instinct has gone from being more like casual outdoorsy to legit training and Outdoors tool, This is important like this is also just insane anyways and, finally, its also a disappointment. The good news, though, is there are things that are not disappointments, which is the accuracy so lets dive into the accuracy first of GPS, heart rate and elevation. Now, looking at this first hike right here, you can see that in most cases, its pretty much the same, a couple, dining differences in the trees and whatnot, and under this Cliff here the Instinct did better than the Amaze fit T Rex, Ultra the pine large across The board its pretty much a wash, in fact the elevation was pretty much exactly the same between all the units and the battery life, even despite navigation, Optical heart rate and phone connectivity nailed the actual specifications from garmins Battery claims.
Next, looking at roads, cycling down these tight switchbacks, no problems with ascending and descending at speed and again the elevation is spot on with a bunch of different units. Even the heart rate actually is pretty good here on the climb, a little minor bloop at the beginning, but definitely better in the Amaze fit T Rex, Ultras, heart rate, while cycling and again the battery life, despite connectivity to power meter and a multi band GPS and All the things turned on is pretty much exactly on spec now, looking at something a little bit less exciting GPS wise. You can see this run here in Amsterdam, just like looking through the trees and stuff and its essentially a watch between the other units, really not that exciting. What is exciting, though, is this heart rate craft. This is crazy. These are really hard 10 by one uh. Basically, all out intervals and it pretty much Nails this across the board, like very, very good compared to the polar h10 chest, strap and then. Finally, looking at Open Water swim with the Instinct 2x on one wrist and the Amaze fit T Rex, Ultra on the other wrist and a high level looks similar. But once you dive in you see that the TRX Ultra kind of miatres a bit ultimately adding 500 meters compared to the reference track from a swim baby versus the Instinct 2x, is virtually identical to the reference track. Gps thats on the buoy Behind Me.
Overall, its awesome to see the Instinct 2x performance basically match the higher end. Garmin GPS, watches okay. So with that, where do we stand well overall? This is a pretty solid option if you were looking for an instinct but wanted a bigger instinct or you wanted the Phoenix flashlight or you want a trending Readiness and you didnt want to pay for it. Now you dont have to pay for it, like the fact that this is the same price is still like mind boggling to me, but Im not complaining, Im, just like dang for once its a good deal, and so in this case this is a good deal. If youre, looking at the Instinct series, especially if youre looking at the Instinct 2 and you wont really sure which one to choose this isnt, that much bigger than most of the other watches, you might have chosen anyways. So its not like one of the bigger x series watches normally from the Phoenix lineup that just feels like a much bulkier watch the addition the flashlight there is great. I love it. Ive loved it on the other watches as well. Just I didnt want the bigger watches, and now I like having it on a smaller watch, Mostly for the mundane tasks, more than like you know, being out in the middle of back country and meeting a flashlight, and that then, of course, gets you to seeing their Downside here, which is the course Max Point thing I wouldnt be in back country with this watch because Id been lost a long time ago.
If, however, you dont go Trucking with stuff and want this watch, its awesome, like its great for every other use case and Ive got no real problems, recommending it at all with that, thanks for watching, if you found this video useful, definitely do not forget to whack That, like button the bottom there or subscribe for plenty more Sports technology goodness this is a busy week. Its really really busy have a good one.tRJt1J_Jnd8