The Coros Pace 2 is an affordable GPS triathlon watch with an optical heart rate monitor and the ability to measure running power from the wrist.
The Garmin Forerunner 245 is a reasonably priced GPS sports watch built primarily for runners. It has music playback, a good selection of sports modes, advanced running dynamics and payment capabilities.
Now that you know a bit more about each watch is about, let’s dive into the details of this comparison.
Key Similarities - Coros Pace 2 vs Garmin Forerunner 245
Coros Pace 2
Key Differences - Coros Pace 2 vs Forerunner 245
Coros Pace 2
Explanation of Differences Between Coros Pace 2 and Forerunner 245
- Running Power From The Wrist – The Coros Pace 2 can measure running power without any accessories. The FR245 can also measure running power, but an accessory is required.
- Music Storage and apps – The Forerunner 245 can store music and use popular apps like Spotify and Deezer. The Pace 2 doesn’t support music.
- Open Water Swimming – The Pace 2 can track indoor and outdoor swimming. The FR245 is limited to pool swimming only.
- Triathlon Tracking – This is the biggest advantage the Pace 2 has over the FR245. The Pace 2 can track triathlons. The FR245 can’t.
- Navigation Capabilities – The Pace 2 has very few navigation features. Conversely the FR245 gives you point-to-point navigation, back to start functionality, distance to destination, and more.
- Payments from the watch – You can load your card details and make payments with the Forerunner 245 using NFC payment technology.
- Fitness Features – The FR245 has better activity tracking technology, including body energy score (body battery) and a pulse oximeter to measure your blood oxygen levels.
- Smart Features – The Forerunner 245 has more smart features, including WiFi connectivity, automatic accident detection, and a truckload of additional apps that you can download through Garmin connect.
Sports Modes Comparison
Coros Pace 2 Sports Modes
- Indoor Running
- Track Running
- Indoor Cycling
- Pool Swimming
- Open Water Swimming
- Triathlon Tracking
- Gym Cardio
- GPS Cardio
- Strength Training
FR245 Sports Modes
- Strength Training
- Cardio Training
- Elliptical Training
- Stair Stepping
- Indoor Rowing
- Treadmill Running
- Indoor Track Running
- Outdoor Track Running
- Trail Running
- Virtual Running
- Indoor Cycling
- Pool Swimming
Reasons To Choose The Coros Pace 2
1. Open Water Swimming
Both the Coros Pace 2 and the FR245 support pool swimming. However, only the Pace 2 can track open water swimming, which is obviously important if you participate in triathlons.
2. Triathlon Tracking
In addition to open water swimming, the Coros Pace 2 also offers full support for triathlon tracking. If you’re a triathlete looking for a budget-friendly GPS sports watch, the Coros Pace 2 should definitely feature on your shortlist.
3. Running Power From The Wrist
Polar was the first tech company to introduce running power from the wrist. With the Pace 2, Coros is the second tech company to do so.
The obvious benefit here is that you don’t have to use an accessory like Stryd or the Garmin Running Dynamics pod in order to unlock your running power stats. It’s also worth mentioning that the Forerunner 245 doesn’t have a barometric altimeter, which means that it doesn’t actually support Garmin running power.
4. The Coros Pace 2 Is Good Value for Money
When Coros introduced the original Pace, it shook up the wearable technology industry. No one was offering such a strong selection of endurance sports packed into such an affordable package.
With the Pace 2, they have expanded on the original value offering by introducing running power from the wrist. To put this in perspective, even the Garmin Fenix 6 doesn’t offer on-board running power support without an accessory.
Ultimately, the Pace 2 is a descent triathlon watch with a very palatable price tag.
Reasons To Choose The Forerunner 245
1. Music Storage & Apps
At this point in time, music storage is basically a stock standard feature of any decent Garmin sports watch. As a Forerunner 245 owner, you will be able to store about 500 songs directly on the watch, and you can also use popular music streaming apps like:
- Amazon Music
- iHeart Radio
2. Advanced Running Dynamics
If you choose the Forerunner 245, you can open up an array of advanced running stats that aren’t supported by the Coros Pace 2. To be more specific, you can access the following running stats with the FR245:
- Ground Contact Time – The amount of time your foot spends on the ground with each stride.
- Ground Contact Balance – The symmetry between your left and right foot when running.
- Vertical Oscillation – The degree of upward ‘bounce’ in your running motion. Lowering this stat can increase running efficiency.
- Vertical Ratio – The cost-benefit ratio with stride length. This allows you to discover the ideal stride length for chasing down a new PB.
- Cadence – Real time cadence stats displayed on the FR245.
- Stride Length – Real-time stride length stats displayed directly on the Forerunner 245.
- Garmin Running Power – Measure your running power output in Watts (kinda like cyclists do).
There is just one thing you need to keep in mind. In order to unlock advanced running dynamics and running power on the Forerunner 745, you need to invest in one of the following four accessories.
3. Payments from the watch
Like most Garmin smartwatches the Forerunner 245 has built-in payment technology. You just need to set up your debit card or credit card and then you no longer need to take your wallet with you on runs, cycles, or visits to the gym. This isn’t necessarily a dealbreaker, but it is a very convenient feature to have at your disposal.
4. Customized Training Plans for Runners
If you’re still new to the sport of running, there’s a good chance you will be able to benefit from Garmin Coach. This feature provides individualized training plans for 5K’s, 10K’s and half-marathons. Moreover, there are 3 highly respected ‘coaches’ that you can access through this feature, namely:
- Jeff Galloway
- Amy Parkerson-Mitchell
- Greg McMillan
5. Better Navigation Capabilities
This is another avenue where the Forerunner 245 has the upper hand over the Coros Pace 2. Even something as simple as ‘back-to-start’ is missing from the Coros unit. Fortunately, if you go for the FR245, you can access:
- Point-to-point navigation
- Bread crumb trail in real-time
- Back to start
- Ultratrac Mode
- Distance to destination
- GPS coordinates
6. Better Activity Tracking Features
The FR245 brings more to the table from an activity tracking perspective. More specifically, you get:
Body Battery Score: This is an overarching metric that assesses your overall energy levels. It combines training data, heart rate data, and sleep data to calculate your body’s score.
Pulse Oximeter (Blood Oxygen Measurements): The elevate V3 heart rate monitor also measures blood oxygen saturation levels to provide a clearer picture of how you’re sleeping or how you’re adjusting to altitude.
Training Load: This stat measures your exercise volume from the last 7 days and compares it to the optimal range for your fitness and recent training history. It can help you decipher if you are undertraining, overtraining, or hitting the sweet spot that will ultimately improve your performance.
7. Additional Apps, Widgets & Features Through Garmin Connect
The Forerunner 245 offers full support for Garmin connect. This is good news because it opens up a whole new world of apps, widgets, and features that can greatly enhance the overall functionality of the watch. This includes apps like:
- Custom watch faces
- Custom data fields
- Strava routes
- Learn to run app
- Beep test
- Strength training apps
In the end, this product battle comes down to your preferred endurance sport. If you’re a triathlete, it’s pretty obvious that you need to go with the Pace 2. However, if you aren’t into triathlons and you really enjoy running, the Forerunner 245 is probably the better bet.