vivoactive HR: vivoactive HR review

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Last updated on February 10, 2019 12:40 am
vivoactive HR: vivoactive HR review
vivoactive HR: vivoactive HR review

$314.11 $295.80


With the Garmin vivoactive HR ,Garmin brings together the best features of the popular fitness bracelet, the vivoactive concept, and further develops the concept consistently. The vivoactive HR looks slightly sportier than the vivoactive and also has a heart rate sensor on the wrist, as well as the vivosmart HR. The multisport functions have been expanded, the display is convincing, and there are also intelligent functions such as the automatic adjustment of the display brightness or MoveIQ. 
The result is an ingenious GPS sports watch that is fun and has completely convinced us in the test: the test winner.

vivoactive HR review

The design is also a matter of taste and clearly designed for sportiness. Otherwise, the GPS sports watch in this category can completely convince.

The color touchscreen is even easier to read than the predecessor Garmin vivoactive, even though the pixel density of 183 PPI is not outstanding. The transflective display is always readable, the light turns on when the wrist is turned or when a button is pressed. In addition, the backlight is now intelligent, that is, it adapts to the brightness of the environment. Wearing comfort is good thanks to the soft wristband, and the Garmin vivoactive HR at 48 g is much lighter on the wrist than, for example, the Polar V800, Nevertheless, the vivoactive HR is so thick that it could be too unwieldy for many people as a fitness tracker in everyday life and is worn rather as a watch replacement. Positive is the pin buckle, which keeps the GPS sports watch securely on the wrist. The watch has vibration alarm.

The operation is simple and intuitive, the display responds quickly and reliably to touch. The battery life has become eight days shorter than the Garmin vivoactive HR, which is likely to be due to the larger display and especially the pulse sensor. Charging takes place via a charging clamp (ie a proprietary charging cable), which is included in the delivery. As usual with other Garmin fitness watches, the vivoactive HR is water resistant up to 50 meters.

Very good activity tracker

The Garmin vivoactive is excellently usable as an activity tracker. The inactivity bar and alarm are also included here. The pedometer is – as usual with Garmin – very accurate, a sleep analysis is also possible. The distance measurement also works well and is very accurate, especially during workouts through the GPS. With a barometric altimeter, the fitness watch also counts the crested floors. In addition, compared to its predecessor, the permanent heart rate measurement via the wrist. This also makes the estimation of the calories burned even more accurate.


vivoactive HR

vivoactive HR

Excellent for training records and analysis

Garmin vivoactive HR

Garmin vivoactive HR

After the Garmin vivo active already had extensive multisport functions (running, swimming, cycling and golf), this is once again exceeded in vivoactive HR. Apps for other sports, such as skiing or rowing, are now available. For example, with the app for swimming, you can measure the number of strokes and the number of laps traveled. In total there are the following sports apps: running, walking, cycling, rowing, swimming (in the pool), golfing, skiing / snowboarding, cross-country skiing and stand-up paddle boarding.

The heart rate measurement is possible in addition to the wrist via a chest strap (accessory) connected via ANT +. The advantage of this is the higher accuracy of the measurement. In addition to a heart rate sensor and various other sensors can be connected, for example, a speed or a cadence sensor. 
What’s new is that activities are now automatically detected with a feature called Garmin MoveIQ.

The vivoactive HR – the “little” smartwatch

The “vivoactive HR” also includes a “small” smartwatch, because as a fitness watch, it also contains many of the features that only smartwatches usually have. 
The smartwatch features of the vivoactive HR are extensive: With the clock you can control music, watch news (including from social apps like Whatsapp), and view calendar events and incoming calls. There is also information about the weather. In the Garmin IQ Connect App Store, there are 1,300 apps available for vivoactive HR, according to Garmin – that’s of course an advantage. These include many different clock designs (“watch faces”).

In the category “App” we give the Garmin vivoactive HR 4.0 out of five. The app convinces with extensive functionalities.

The App Garmin Connect convinces with numerous evaluation options. It is also available for Android, iOS and Windows Phone. Only the clarity could still be better. Due to the larger display, more evaluations can now be displayed directly on the display of the Garmin vivoactive HR (for example, the course of the heart rate, see figure), which is why the app is needed less than, for example, the Garmin vivosmart HR.


Compared to Garmin vivoactive, vivoactive HR is another improvement. Although the clock is a bit chunkier, it can convince in total, reaching 4.7 out of five. 
With the price of currently around € 269 you have to invest more than in some other GPS sports watches – the price-performance ratio thus achieved, despite the very good rating “only” 4.1 out of 5 points. Thus, the watch is more likely to appeal to users who really have high expectations for a fitness watch and do not want to compromise with the masses

Value for money
Test result
+ Positives:
  • Excellent equipment
  • 24/7 pulse measurement on the wrist
  • Pulse measurement additionally possible via chest strap
  • Can also be used as an activity tracker in everyday life
  • Very good multisport features
  • High accuracy pedometer
  • Fast color touchscreen
  • Top smartwatch features
  • MoveIQ - automatic activity detection
- Negatives:
  • A bit clunky
  • Accuracy of heart rate measurement on the wrist is not perfect

Additional information

Specification: vivoactive HR: vivoactive HR review


Wireless Phone Accessory



Clothing Size




Unisex Adults'



EAN List

0753759154400, 0753759154370, 0667649006673

Item Dimensions

Height: 50, Length: 890, Weight: 10, Width: 120









Number Of Items


Package Dimensions

Height: 268, Length: 614, Weight: 57, Width: 323

Package Quantity


Part Number




Product Group


Product Type Name




Release Date



XL (16.2cm-22.5cm)




Garmin Vivoactive HR GPS Smart Watch with Wrist Based Heart Rate – X-Large-Black



UPC List

753759154370, 667649006673, 753759154400

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