Garmin Forerunner 945 vs 935 : Compare the 2 GPS triathlon watches.  With over £150 difference between the two watches is the Garmin Forerunner 945 worth the extra money?  We look at the specifications of each watch and do a side by side comparison.  

Whats new in the Garmin Forerunner 945?

There are a number of additional features in the Garmin Forerunner 945 compared to the earlier 935 model.  Most notably the new model has 8GB of internal storage to support music storage and playback via bluetooth headphones.  The biggest other change has been the inclusion of contactless NFC payments using Garmin pay.  There are a host of changes tracking your progress and aids including on-board maps with heat map data.  

Garmin Forerunner 945 GPS watch


The Garmin Forerunner 945 is one of our favourite triathlon watches.  It truly is a masterclass in multi-sport smart watch technology.  The Garmin 945 provides excellent multi-sport tracking including a dedicated triathlon mode, something perfected through earlier Forerunner models.  Garmin have worked to refine the recipe since the 80’s inspired 910XT.  Each rebirth of this classic has added more functionality and slimmed down the profile.  The latest model cosmetically looked very similar to the 935 with the same 5 button no touchscreen interface.  Weight wise it is broadly the same with an extra 1 gram likely the result of a new 8GB of internal storage and contactless payment functionality.  If you are looking for options we have a top 3 alternatives to the Garmin 945 in an earlier article that is well worth a look. 

Garmin 945 Specifications

Lens material: Gorilla Glass
Display size: 1.2″ (30.4 mm)
Display: 240 x 240 pixels colour display
Water Tolerance: 100 meters
Weight: 50 grams
Satellite connectivity: GPS, Glonass, Galileo 
Data Transfer: Bluetooth / Smartphone / Wifi / Ant+
Memory: 8GB
Sensors: Accelerometer, Barometric altimeter, Compass, Gyroscope, Thermometer
Heart rate monitor: Garmin Elevate wrist based heart rate monitor
Touchscreen: No
Music Streaming Services : Spotify, Deezer, iHeartRadio
Payment Services: Garmin Pay
Recharging: Via proprietary dock (1-2 hours)
Battery life: GPS mode with music – up to 10 hours, GPS mode without music – up to 36 hours, Smartwatch mode – up to 2 weeks

Best price for the Garmin Forerunner 945

Buy Garmin Forerunner 945 for £449 from Chain Reaction cycles.

Having dived into the Garmin 945 lets move to cover the Garmin Forerunner 935 to get an in-depth view on this watch as a comparison.

Garmin Forerunner 935 GPS watch


The predecessor to the Garmin Forerunner 945 the 935 is still an excellent watch today.  The 935 moved Garmin on massively from the mono Garmin 920XT and the interim Garmin 735 that moved Garmin onto the circular design.  Launched in 2017 the 935 delivered a wealth of new features for Garmin.  Two of the biggest additions being wrist based heart rate monitoring and full colour screen to transform the user experience.  Saving £150 on the latest model there is a lot to like here that is reflected by the fact Garmin still sell this model and one of their biggest sellers. It features a full set of triathlon features and accurate GPS tracking with a wealth of metrics to support metric based training.  Thanks to firmware updates benefits from many of the newer version operating system and capabilities.  Like the Garmin 945 the watch also benefits from the excellent Garmin Connect watch application with Bluetooth for data synchronisation.  Grab a bargain now and get yours while you can.  

Garmin 935 Specifications

Lens material: Strengthened Glass
Display size:1.2″ (30.5 mm)
Display: 240 x 240 pixels colour display
Water Tolerance: 50 meters
Weight: 49 grams
Satellite connectivity: GPS, Glonass
Data Transfer: Bluetooth / Smartphone / Wifi / Ant+
Memory: 64MB
Sensors: Accelerometer, Barometric altimeter, Compass, Gyroscope, Thermometer
Heart rate monitor: Garmin Elevate wrist based heart rate monitor
Touchscreen: No
Music Streaming Services: Not available
Payment Services: Not available
Recharging: Via proprietary dock (1-2 hours)
Battery Life: GPS mode up to 24 hours.  GPS tracking in UltraTrac mode up to 50 hours.  Smartwatch mode up to 14 days. 

Best price for the Garmin Forerunner 935

Buy the Garmin 935 from Wiggle who have this discounted at £299.

Further articles from Trivelo

Hopefully this has helped you make a decision on your next multi-sport watch with the Garmin Forerunner 945 vs 935 comparison.  Make the most of your new watch and check out these useful articles. 

For those who have wondered about the swimming metrics on the watches and the SWOLF score we have the answers.  Learn exactly what the SWOLF score means for your swim performance and what makes a good SWOLF score. 

For those going long in 2021 and full distance Ironman triathlon races then read our article on how to set up your watch for an Ironman. Making sure the battery lasts up to 17 hours can be a worry so read our step by step guide. 

Watching the pennies if you are looking on the second market there are plenty of Garmin Forerunner 920’s available.  Read our full review of the Garmin Forerunner 920XT with a detailed review of this excellent watch.

Garmin 935 vs 945 comparison infographic


If you train listening to music running or cycling you face the constant worry about staying aware of your surroundings. We have reviewed the Oladance open ear headphones that don’t block out all the surrounding noise. Find out if Nick thought this was worthwhile as a runner and cyclist who never used headphones before for this reason.

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Billy Ferguson

Having founded Trivelo in 2015 after many years competing in triathlon Billy continues to enjoy training and triathlon. Founder Billy is strongest in the water but continues to try and convince his body that he is an ultra runner.


Sean · 28/02/2024 at 8:38 am

Great comparison of the Garmin Forerunner 945 vs 935! I’m a triathlete and I’ve been considering upgrading my current watch. Your post has really helped me understand the key differences between these two models. I’m particularly interested in the battery life and the additional features on the 945. Thanks for taking the time to write this post!

Terry · 18/01/2024 at 7:27 am

Great comparison post! As a triathlete, I’m always on the lookout for the best GPS watch to suit my needs. I’m particularly interested in the Garmin Forerunner 945 vs 935, as both have received great reviews. I appreciate the detailed comparison you’ve provided, it’s given me a good idea of the features and differences between the two. I’ll definitely be considering these points when making my decision. Thanks for the informative post!

Lats · 10/01/2024 at 5:19 am

Interesting comparison! I’m currently deciding between these two watches for my triathlon training and racing. It’s great to see a side-by-side comparison of their features and strengths. Any recommendations on which one would be better suited for someone who wants to track their swim sessions and running zones? Thanks for the post!

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