Menu

Garmin Forerunner 735XT Review

 |  Garmin  | 

The Garmin Forerunner 735XT has all the multisport features you would expect from a triathlon watch, which takes all the best bits from the Forerunner 920XT and packaged into something smaller but is the Garmin FR735XT any good? Read our review of the Garmin Forerunner 735XT to find out.

Garmin Forerunner 735XT Review

Overview
The Garmin Forerunner 735XT is pretty similar to Garmin’s FR235 running watch but is a lot smaller than the FR 920XT model. It’s surprisingly lightweight weighing just 1.4 oz. or 40.2 g, because it’s made of plastic, which obviously saves weight compared to metal or glass type watches.

Garmin Forerunner 735XT Review

Garmin Forerunner 735XT – Multisport activity selector

The Garmin FR730XT is available is two colors black/gray or midnight/frost blue. The watch face is round, and the buttons are big so you can quickly access the relevant menus and stats. The screen comes with a dark background with the date and time illuminated, but it’s something that can be changed. The screen can be read easily in sunlight as well as at night due to the backlight.

The battery life on the Forerunner 735XT is also pretty amazing, offering:

  • Up to 24 hours in UltraTrac mode without optical HR
  • Up to 14 hours in activity mode with GPS and optical HR
  • Up to 11 days in watch mode, including activity tracking, smart notifications and optical HR tracking.

Optical Heart Rate Monitor
The Garmin FR735XT features an built-in optical heart rate sensor so in order to use the heart rate monitor; you need to have it tight on your arm and high in order for it to get a good reading. The screen will show the current heart rate, your resting heart rate as well as a chart showing the data accumulated in the past four hours.

Garmin Forerunner 735XT

Garmin Forerunner 735XT- Last Run Stats

Running indoors or outdoors is easy, the GPS launches automatically, and there are no delays. There are plenty of activity modes that come with the watch. The options are indoor run, indoor bike, pool swim, run, open water swim, and triathlon. If you choose triathlon, there is a button that allows you to change from one sport to another.

The Garmin Forerunner 735XT will show you the basic data you need to see such as pace, time, distance with some bonus features. The Training Effect score is a rating system that scores 1.0 to 5.0 on how your current workout is helping to improve your overall fitness. During my last run, the device informed me that I would need 24 hours of recovery before my next run. It’s great for getting a lot of feedback on your journey.

The Forerunner 735XT allows you to set a pace alert that gives you a heads up if you happen to vary from the pace you set. While you are on your run, you can see contact time balance, vertical ratio, and stride length. Using the chest strap you can also monitor your heart rate. It will even remind you if you have been inactive for too long.

There are also push notifications available; it will let you see a few lines of the notification so that you have some idea of what’s going on. You can dismiss them with a single press of a button.

If you like the idea of a sleep tracker, then you will love the Forerunner. It will log in all the time that you have spent sleeping peacefully. Unfortunately, a downfall is that if you take the watch off and leave it running that it will continue to track your sleep as if you are wearing it.

Garmin-Forerunner-735XT-Stats

Garmin Forerunner 735XT Stats

It also records other activities such as swims, and bike rides, not just running. It will also support strength training, paddle sports, cross-country skiing and hiking.

Syncing
The mobile app on the watch syncs with any number of devices that you may have. It works on iOS and Android and can sync wirelessly. It can also be synced onto your laptop if you prefer to look things over on a bigger monitor. Garmin Connect gives you more insight into your data when you log into the Web app. Many people prefer to see as much data as possible on their activity while others are happy with the basics, but it’s there if you need it.

The Garmin Connect app hasn’t always been the best app available. But they seem to be continually improving it. One if the issues that occur is the syncing will fail sometimes. It’s not as huge deal however as the Garmin Forerunner 735XT will hold up to 80 hours of activity data in the memory. It will just upload the next time it has the chance to sync. So it’s not as big of an issue if you’re getting an overall good watch.

Related Post  Garmin Forerunner 310XT Review

Garmin Forerunner 735XT App
The watch taps into the Garmin Connect IQ store where you will find all the available apps. Using the Garmin app, you can actually set another device as your primary activity tracker, if you happen to have another that works better for use during your day. If you are using the GPS a lot, then you can expect to get about 14 hours out of it before it will require a charge.

Garmin FR 735XT Positives

  • Measures your heart rate at the wrist so you can run more naturally without the need for chest based heart rate monitor.
  • Advanced dynamics for runners, cyclists and swimmers
  • Lightweight weighing just 1.4 oz. or 40.2 g.
  • Good battery life providing up to 24 hours when used intensively or up to 11 days just in watch mode.
  • Smart notifications so you can get all your phone notifications at your wrist.

Garmin FR 735XT Negatives

  • Screen can be a little dim to view.

Specifications

Dimensions 1.75″ x 1.75″ x 0.47″ (44.5 x 44.5 x 11.9 mm)
Display 1.23″ (31.1 mm) diameter
Resolution 215 x 180 pixels
Weight 1.4 oz (40.2 g)
Battery life Up to 24 hours in UltraTrac mode without optical HR; up to 14 hours in activity mode with GPS and optical HR; up to 11 days in watch mode, including activity tracking, smart notifications and optical HR tracking
Water rating 5 ATM
GPS-enabled, GLONASS, High-sensitivity receiver, Smart notifications (displays email, text and other alerts when paired with your compatible phone), Vibration alert, Music control, Find my phone, VIRB® control, Watch functions Yes
Running Features V02 max estimate, Recovery advisor, Race predictor, Running dynamics, Accelerometer (calculates distance for indoor workouts, without need for a foot pod), Personal records
Cycling Features Compatible with Vector™, Bike speed/cadence sensor
Swimming Features Pool swim metrics (lengths, distance, pace, stroke count/rate, calories), Stroke type identification (e.g. freestyle), Open water swim metrics (distance, pace, stroke count/rate, calories), Swim workouts
Activity Tracking Features Step counter, Auto goal (learns your activity level and assigns a daily step goal), Move bar (displays on device after a period of inactivity; walk for a couple of minutes to reset it), Sleep monitoring (monitors total sleep and periods of movement or restful sleep)

What’s in the Box
Watch Only

  • Forerunner 735XT GPS watch
  • Charging/data clip
  • Manual

Run Bundle

  • Forerunner 735XT GPS watch
  • HRM-Run™ monitor
  • Charging/data clip
  • Manual

Tri-Bundle

  • Forerunner 735XT GPS watch
  • HRM-Tri™ monitor
  • HRM-Swim™ monitor
  • Charging/data clip
  • Manual

What Other People Say About the FR 735XT
Run, get it! – Love it! Light, visible and durable. Stats are instantly available. My favorite GPS watch. The app kicks ass too – lots of details which I don’t understand. I have family and friends that run, so I post my runs to Facebook – too easy. If you like stats, this is a most have. Oh, yeah, charges fast too. By Robert

Terrific upgrade – I went from using an FR225 for runs/activity tracking + a TomTom Cardio Multisport for biking/swimming to a single watch. The interface is not perfect, but it’s quick to get used to and once you know your activities, navigation becomes second nature. Battery does suffer significantly if it’s continuously monitoring heart rate & connected to your BT4 phone. By Miguel Pereira

Works like a Garmin – Works exactly as expected. Haven’t used the transition function yet but the rest of the watch has been on point. I wear all day, sleep with it on at night, and can get about 4-5 solid workouts on it before it hits 20% battery left. By Nicole Shoenberger

Garmin FR 735XT Video

Conclusion
The Garmin Forerunner series are always impressive watches, and overall the Forerunner 735XT is no different. It’s lightweight, easy to use and enables tri-athletes to keep track of their most important stats. The FR 735XT has all the features that you’d expect for a GPS multisport watch within this price range and you can’t go wrong if you want to take your training seriously.

Where to buy the Garmin FR 735XT
You can currently pick up the Garmin Forerunner 735XT directly from Amazon, which includes free shipping where the base model comes in at $449.99, Run-Bundle (comes with HRM-Run monitor) for $499.99 or the Tri-Bundle (comes with HRM-Tri and HRM Swim monitors) for $599.99.