In the world of GPS, Garmin has earned a well-deserved place as an iconic brand in the industry. They’ve long been known to make excellent GPS devices, and they specialize in wearable technology. It’s not unexpected to have the brand produce a smartwatch that offers outdoor navigation to go with tactical functionality, and that’s exactly what you get with the Garmin Tactix Bravo.
Features of the Garmin Tactix Bravo
This isn’t really a watch, or at least just a simple fashion accessory that tells time. It’s better to think of it as a tool, or more accurately, a set of tools. It just so happens that this set of tools comes in the likeness of a wristwatch.
- The most notable features here are the set of built-in features here for numerous different types of outdoor activity. These options are Climb, Hike, Tactical, Jumpmaster, Trail Run, and Run. Pick one, and you get various features and data that can help you achieve your goal.
- This has GPS features (it is a Garmin after all) and you can use these to track your path and guide you to where you want to go. You can also mark locations such as your start and end points, checkpoints, your campsite, or your vehicle. With the special antenna and the use of GPS and GLONASS systems, you can get a fix on your position more easily even in rather challenging locations.
- You also get the ABC features: altimeter, barometer, and compass. So you’ll know your elevation, weather readings, and direction.
- Modes of viewing include normal day use and night vision goggle-compatible.
- The fitness metrics you can find out at a glance include your heart rate (per minute and variability), and running speed. You can see how you’re doing with your fitness gains by tracking the changes to your VO2 max. Based on this number, the smart watch can calculate your finish time. Plus, there’s also a recovery check and timer function.
- You also get advanced metrics like the number of steps per minute (cadence), degree of bounce, the amount of time your feet are in contract with the ground when you run, and the length of your stride. You even get scores for your performance condition, stress, and lactate threshold.
- The Connect IQ store can provide you with free downloads to customize the look of your watch face, and to add data fields to the 1.2-inch screen. The Garmin Face app can even let you use a photo to act as the face of your watch.
- Even the strap can be picked. You can use a nylon strap or a silicone band and the price for the Tactix Bravo remains the same.
- While this can be bought in several possible colors, you should get the non-reflective black model. That’s best for tactical situations when you don’t want your watch to reveal your position to other people.
- This is extremely tough, with a rugged design that’s specially made for field conditions. It’s even water rated for 100 meters, which in practical terms means you can go swimming with it.
- The battery life lasts for 20 hours in GPS mode, but the UltraTac battery saver mode can extend that to 50 hours. In just your usual smartwatch mode, you can go for up to twoor even three weeks.
You don’t have to rack your brains to realize the many good things about the Tactix Bravo.
- Unlike other smart devices, this one is designed to be tough. It’s virtually shockproof and waterproof and made for use in the field.
- The vast amount of information at your fingertips is astonishing. Just take a look at the basic and the advanced metrics you get when you’re running. You even get other tools and metrics for trail runs, hiking, climbing, and even parachute jumping. It’s really for the serious outdoorsman—or Special Forces commando.
- You can personalize its look so that you literally guarantee that your watch doesn’t look like any other wristwatch in the world. You can change its look every day if you want. So it’s like wearing a different watch every day.
- The battery life is especially nice. Some of its competitors can last for just 10 hours in GPS mode. Here you get double that.
- It’s very comfortable to wear. You can suit your watch band preferences (nylon or silicone) and you can always get both to further change the look every day.
- You’ll never get lost with this on your wrist.
- You don’t even have to take it off when you swim or take a shower.
There are some issues that may need to be faced.
- It can get a bit picky when it comes to its compatibility and the smartphone you use. You will need to keep the watch software updated.
- With so many features, you may be a bit overwhelmed at first.
Are you a true outdoorsman? At first you may think that some of the functions and metrics may not be of any use, like for parachute jumping or climbing. They’re not useless—they’re subtle encouragement for you to try new things. Who’s to say you won’t enjoy them?
It’s safe to say that for the serious guys on the field, the Garmin Tactix Bravo can be convenient or even life-saving.
With its custom looks, dependable reliability, and cornucopia of features and metrics, it’s certainly a lot of value for so small a thing as a wristwatch!