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Garmin fenix 7S Pro Watch face 1
Kaitlyn Cimino / Android Authority
aa2020 recommended

Garmin Fenix 7 Pro review: Should you buy it?

Equal features for wrists big and small.
By

Published onJune 15, 2023

aa2020 recommended

Garmin Fenix 7 Pro

The Garmin Fenix 7 Pro elevates the brand's top multisport line another rung with significant hardware and software improvements. From its highly reliable heart rate sensor to its dead useful built-in flashlight, the Fenix 7 Pro is a true fitness (and daily life) companion. New workout metrics and mapping features are easier to use than ever on an updated MIP display and the series now offers the same experience across the lineup so users of all sizes can tap into the best features Garmin has to offer.

What we like

Built-in flashlight on all sizes
Solar charging multi-band GNSS across all models
Highly accurate Gen 5 Elevate heart rate sensor
Useful new training metrics and mapping upgrades

What we don't like

No longer a cheaper base model option
Slow charging and proprietary cable
Potentially not enough to warrant an upgrade
aa2020 recommended

Garmin Fenix 7 Pro

The Garmin Fenix 7 Pro elevates the brand's top multisport line another rung with significant hardware and software improvements. From its highly reliable heart rate sensor to its dead useful built-in flashlight, the Fenix 7 Pro is a true fitness (and daily life) companion. New workout metrics and mapping features are easier to use than ever on an updated MIP display and the series now offers the same experience across the lineup so users of all sizes can tap into the best features Garmin has to offer.

Garmin Fenix 7 Pro review: At a glance

  • What is it? The Fenix 7 Pro is Garmin's latest addition to the beloved Fenix smartwatch lineup. It showcases a brand-new heart rate sensor, a sharper MIP display, and more features across all three case sizes. Every Fenix 7 Pro model now offers a built-in flashlight, 32GB of storage, solar charging, and multiband GNSS, as well as new training metrics, activity modes, and weather and mapping tools.
  • What is the price? Pricing for the Garmin Fenix 7 Pro starts at $799 across all three sizes. Sapphire models of each cost an additional $100.
  • Where can you buy it? The Garmin Fenix 7 Pro is available now from Garmin and Amazon.
  • How did we test it? I tested the Garmin Fenix 7S Pro Sapphire Solar edition for nine days paired with my Samsung Galaxy A51. The review unit was supplied by Garmin.
  • Is it worth it? The Garmin Fenix 7 Pro is a fantastic device worth considering if your budget allows it. It's accurate, reliable, offers fantastic battery life, and puts all the best Garmin has to offer on wrists of every size. The only reason you might want to hold off buying is the potential for a Fenix 8 to offer greater upgrades, but that doesn't stop this from being a fantastic addition to Garmin's multisport family.

Should you buy the Garmin Fenix 7 Pro?

A Garmin fenix 7 Pro on a user's wrist demonstrates the brightest modes of its LED flashlight.
Kaitlyn Cimino / Android Authority

When it comes to the latest Fenix 7 Pro series, size finally doesn’t matter. All Pro series devices, including the 42mm Fenix 7S Pro, 47mm Fenix 7 Pro, and 51mm Fenix 7X Pro, now offer nearly identical experiences. They’re comfortable, classy, packed with features, and available in base or Sapphire models. They also all debut an updated Memory in Pixel (MIP) display that’s more readable in low-light environments.

Most importantly, rather than relegating key features to the biggest models, the Pro series brings all the best of Garmin to wrists of all sizes. This includes solar charging, 32GB of storage for maps and music, and multiband GNSS. It also means you no longer need to strap on a massive X model to score a built-in flashlight.

The Garmin Fenix 7 Pro lineup puts more features on every case size, including solar charging, multiband GNSS, 32GB of memory, and a highly-useful built-in LED flashlight.

Understandably, emphasizing a built-in flashlight might inspire some eye rolls. In reality, it’s so useful it’s almost baffling, with four white light intensity settings and a red light mode for after hours. This week alone I’ve used the Fenix 7S Pro to illuminate a forest trail after sunset, search through my disorganized bin of fishing gear and find lures, and rummage under my jeep’s seats for a dropped credit card. I also used the red mode on a near-nightly basis to hit the bathroom without waking my partner. The feature also offers strobe effects and running modes that will match your cadence, which allows traffic to see you on evening runs.

Garmin Fenix 7S Pro Hill Endurance Scores
Kaitlyn Cimino / Android Authority

When you do take that run, you’ll also find two new fitness tracking metrics: Endurance Score and Hill Score. Endurance Score represents your ability to sustain performances over time. It’s generated by analyzing your VO2 max as well as your activity history, taking into account your training intensity and fatigue resistance. Hill Score measures your skill at ascent running. During all recorded runs, hikes, and walks, Garmin automatically detects segments with a grade of more than 2% and analyzes your hill strength (think height climbed) and hill endurance (think speed) as well as your VO2 max.

In theory, both metrics offer unique insights and potential advantages for endurance athletes. However, they also both seem to need more data before reaching their full potential. The Hill Score feature in particular requires two full weeks of data before it will provide a score.

Meanwhile, Garmin understands running isn’t for everyone (and even dedicated runners like to mix it up). To that end, the company added 30 new sport modes, including popular team sports and niche activities. As always though, tracking activity is only as useful as it is accurate and Garmin delivers there as well.

A Garmin fenix 7S Saphire Solar edition rests face down displaying its new heart rate sensor.
Kaitlyn Cimino / Android Authority

The Garmin Fenix 7 Pro features an all-new Garmin Elevate Gen 5 optical heart rate sensor that proved extremely reliable throughout my tests. It matched my Polar HR chest strap on runs, as well as during interval training, hikes, and cycling workouts. Likewise, the device provides incredibly accurate GPS tracking. Since Garmin added multiband GNSS to every case size, even my petite Fenix 7S recorded accurate routes across the board. The device also uses SatIQ to automatically utilize the most battery-efficient GPS/GNSS tracking.

For outdoor enthusiasts, Garmin added weather overlays to its maps to show precipitation, temperature, cloud coverage, and wind, as well as relief shading for more at-a-glance information about the terrain you’re covering. Garmin also introduced new view options that keep your stats on screen while looking at maps, including the split screen option shown above, and a perimeter option that pushes your stats to the edges of the display. All of these updates make navigating with the Fenix 7 Pro extremely useful.

In short, this is a very impressive device with some noteworthy upgrades. In a vacuum, it’s a fantastic buy, (as are most Garmin devices, to be honest). However, and this is a big however, it’s also a classic Garmin half-step, and not likely worth upgrading to if you already own a Fenix 7 series device, especially if it’s the Fenix 7X. Unless you’re desperate for a flashlight and solar charging, you’re better off holding tight with the new software on an older watch. Plus, we’d be surprised if Garmin doesn’t have a powerful Fenix 8 in the works anyway.

Garmin Fenix 7 ProGarmin Fenix 7 Pro
AA Recommended
Garmin Fenix 7 Pro
Built-in flashlight • Solar charging multi-band GNSS • Gen 5 Elevate heart rate sensor
MSRP: $799.99
Solar-powered premium smartwatch
Get the best convenience of Garmin's fitness tracking and smartwatch functionality in the solar-powered Fenix 7 Pro. Available in 42mm, 47mm, and 51mm case sizes, Pro series devices feature upgraded heart rate sensors, solar charging, advanced fitness tracking, and a built-in LED flashlight. For an even tougher display and titanium build, upgrade to a Sapphire model.

What are the best Garmin Fenix 7 Pro alternatives?

A variety of leading multisport watches rest on a white shelf.
Kaitlyn Cimino / Android Authority

Like a classic scary movie from the 90s, the Garmin Fenix 7 Pro’s biggest threat comes from inside the house.

  • Garmin Epix Pro ($899.99 at Amazon): A Fenix 7 Pro with an AMOLED display, the Garmin Epix Pro offers a similar experience on a much more colorful screen, plus Red Shift Mode for nighttime use.
  • Garmin Forerunner 965 ($599.99 at Garmin): The Garmin Forerunner 965 also boasts an AMOLED display, an LED flashlight, tons of Garmin’s top training features, and a much smaller price tag.
  • Apple Watch Ultra ($799 at Amazon): If you’re an iOS user looking for a more robust smartwatch experience, the Apple Watch Ultra is unrivaled, though it won’t provide training tools as advanced as Garmin’s watches.
  • Garmin Fenix 7 series ($699.99 at Amazon): Finally, we’re all about readers saving some cash by purchasing older tech and the Fenix 7 series is a great lineup. Just note that only the largest models offer the best hardware features.

Garmin Fenix 7 Pro specs

Garmin Fenix 7 Pro, 7S Pro, and 7X Pro
Display
Fenix 7S Pro:
1.2-inch sunlight-visible MIP
240 x 240 resolution

Fenix 7 Pro:
1.3-inch sunlight-visible MIP
260 x 260 resolution

Fenix 7X Pro:
1.4-inch sunlight-visible MIP
280 x 280 resolution
IP rating
10ATM
Dimensions and weight
Fenix 7S Pro:
42 x 42 x 14.2mm
Base Solar models: 63g (with band)
Sapphire Solar model Titanium version: 58g
Sapphire Solar model Stainless Steel version: 65g

Fenix 7 Pro:
47 x 47 x 14.5mm
Base Solar models: 79g (with band)
Sapphire Solar model: 73g (with band)

Fenix 7X Pro:
51 x 51 x 14.9mm
Base Solar models: 96g (with band)
Sapphire Solar model: 86g (with band)
Compatibility
Android, iOS
Storage
32GB
Lens material
Base Solar model: Power Glass
Sapphire Solar model: Power Sapphire
Build materials
Bezel
Base Solar models: Stainless steel
Sapphire Solar model: Titanium

Case
Base Solar models: Fiber-reinforced polymer with steel rear cover
Sapphire Solar model: Fiber-reinforced polymer with titanium rear cover
Connectivity
Bluetooth Smart
ANT+
Wi-Fi
Smartwatch features
Connect IQ-compatible
Smartphone notifications
Text response/reject phone call with text (Android only)
Controls smartphone music
Plays and controls smartwatch music
Find my phone/find my watch
Incident Detection
LiveTrack
Input
Five face buttons
Touchscreen
Sensors
Garmin Elevate heart rate sensor (Gen 5)
GPS
QZSS
GLONASS
Galileo
Beidou
Multi-band GNSS
Barometric altimeter
Compass
Gyroscope
Accelerometer
Thermometer
Pulse ox blood oxygen saturation monitor
Battery
Fenix 7S Pro:
Smartwatch mode: Up to 11 days / 14 days with solar
Smartwatch mode (w/ battery saver): Up to 38 days / 87 days with solar
GPS only: Up to 37 hours / 46 hours with solar
All satellite systems: Up to 26 hours / 30 hours with solar
All satellite systems + Multi-band: Up to 15 hours/16 hours with solar
All satellite systems + music: Up to 7 hours
Max battery GPS: Up to 90 hours / 162 hours with solar
Expedition GPS: Up to 26 days / 43 days with solar

Fenix 7 Pro:
Smartwatch mode: Up to 18 days / 22 days with solar
Smartwatch mode (w/ battery saver): Up to 57 days / 173 days with solar
GPS only: Up to 57 hours / 73 hours with solar
All satellite systems: Up to 40 hours / 48 hours with solar
All satelite sytems + Multi-band: Up to 23 hours/26 hours with solar
All satelite systems + music: Up to 10 hours
Max battery GPS: Up to 136 hours / 289 hours with solar
Expedition GPS: Up to 40 days / 74 days with solar

Fenix 7X Pro:
Smartwatch mode: Up to 28 days / 37 days with solar
Smartwatch mode (w/ battery saver): Up to 90 days / 1+ year with solar
GPS only: Up to 89 hours / 122 hours with solar
All satellite systems: Up to 63 hours / 77 hours with solar
All satelite system + Multi-band: Up to 36 hours/41 hours with solar
All satellite systems + music: Up to 16 hours
Max battery GPS: Up to 213 hours / 578 hours with solar
Expedition GPS: Up to 62 days / 139 days with solar
Garmin Pay
Yes

Garmin Fenix 7 Pro review: FAQ

The Garmin Fenix 7 Pro features a 10ATM water resistance rating.

Like the previous generation, the Garmin Fenix 7 Pro takes nearly two hours to charge from 0 to 100%. Battery life also largely mimics the same stats reached with a Fenix 7 device as well.

Sapphire Garmin Fenix 7 Pro models feature titanium cases and Sapphire glass for added durability.

The Fenix 7 Pro is compatible with both iPhones and Android phones.

You can both accept or decline phone calls from your Garmin Fenix 7 Pro, however, you will need to use your paired phone to talk.

Yes, the Fenix 7 Pro supports Garmin’s extensive sleep-tracking platform including daily sleep scores.

Yes, the Fenix 7 Pro tracks Heart Rate Variability (HRV).

Yes, the Fenix 7 Pro uses a wrist-based pulse oximeter to measure blood oxygen saturation (SpO2).