One fundamental truth in the fitness world is that real athletes don’t wear smartwatches! It simply does not meet their needs in terms of durability, battery, and features designed to provide real metrics on performance. Since 2018, COROS has been creating affordable GPS fitness watches that bring only the best features in a premium build but at an affordable price and the Vertix 2 is the best watch they have made to date.
COROS is a performance sports technology company that helps athletes train to be their best. With a focus on those that are passionate about the outdoors, mountains, and living an active lifestyle, they seemingly work to combine high-grade hardware with innovative technology to provide endurance athletes with the gear they can rely on in the world’s most extreme environments. Last year, we praised their budget-friendly Pace 2 as being “the only fitness watch you should buy” but after using the Vertix 2 this past 3 months, this premium offering truly is a whole other beast.
Let’s start with the build, it simply doesn’t get better than this – a large 1.4-inch ultra-clear display that is protected by diamond-like sapphire glass, housed within a premium titanium bezel with a very clever and convenient mechanical navigational dial and it’s also dustproof and water-resistant up to 10ATM. It also features 32GB of internal storage, meaning you can download and play your favorite music, podcasts, or audiobooks and it easily pairs with your favorite Bluetooth headphones.
The Vertix 2, like its predecessor, offers all-day activity plus sleep tracking and features such as advanced navigation, offline mapping, camera controls, and premium health features like heart rate variability and blood oxygen monitoring. However, the star of the show is its new global offline mapping features with landscape, TOPO, or hybrid mode options that are helped in part by the watches’ ability to communicate to all five major satellite tracking systems – GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, QZSS, and Beidou. You can even download your own TOPO maps by region for free using the quietly brilliant COROS app.
The watch is also stacked with a multitude of different indoor and outdoor workout tracking profiles including – run, bike, mountain climb, hike, pool swim, speedsurfing, windsurfing, rowing, whitewater, flatwater, triathlon, strength, gym cardio, ski, snowboard, cross-country ski, multisport, multi-pitch, walking and more. It is the most comprehensive list we have seen on a fitness watch to date. This is aided by seamlessly never-ending battery life, seriously, it is so good we misplaced the charging cable because it lasts that long! COROS promises 60 days in basic watch mode or 140 hours straight in full GPS mode and we fully agree with this estimate in our testing. Put plainly, this is not your annoying 1.5-day Apple Watch battery life. It is a game-changer.
Last but certainly not least is the Vertix 2’s ability to give users legitimate and accurate HRV (heart rate variability) measurements and Sp02 readings at any time and log them in the app. Monitoring your Sp02 can help optimize your health, sleep, and fitness. It’s also an indicator of important changes to your health which is a must for performance athletes.
To sum up, if you are an adventure junkie, an athlete in training or you just want one of the most comprehensive fitness watches on the market the COROS Vertix 2 checks all the right boxes and more and is our top pick in this category in early 2022.