Garmin Approach S40 vs S42 – Golf Watch Comparison

Garmin Approach S40 vs S42 – Golf Watch Comparison

The Garmin Approach S40 and the Garmin Approach S42 are quite literally the same watch. This will become very apparent when you review the comparison tables below. 

They share identical specs in every respect, except for product name and color options. There isn’t even a battery life upgrade, which seems unthinkable but is no less true. 

Nevertheless, they are both very good golf watches that will keep most golfers happy with a solid selection of golf features and a few extra sports features like running, cycling and basic activity tracking. 

Key Similarities - Garmin S40 vs S42

Approach S40

Approach S42

PRELOADED WITH 42,000 COURSES

Yes

Yes

YARDAGE TO GREEN (F,M,B)

Yes

Yes

YARDAGE TO LAYUPS/DOGLEGS

Yes

Yes

MEASURES SHOT DISTANCE

Yes

Yes

DIGITAL SCORECARD

Yes

Yes

CUSTOM TARGETS

Yes

Yes

STAT TRACKING

Yes

Yes

GARMIN AUTOSHOT™

Yes

Yes

AUTO COURSEVIEW UPDATES

Yes

Yes

GREEN VIEW WITH MANUAL PIN

Yes

Yes

HAZARDS AND COURSE TARGETS

Yes

Yes

HANDICAP SCORING

Yes

Yes

TRUSWING™ COMPATIBLE

Yes

Yes

ROUND TIMER/ODOMETER

Yes

Yes

AUTOMATIC CLUB TRACKING COMPATIBLE

Yes

Yes

ACTIVITY TRACKING

Yes

Yes

SLEEP TRACKING

Yes

Yes

RUNNING + INDOOR RUNNING

Yes

Yes

CYCLING + INDOOR CYCLING

Yes

Yes

GPS

Yes

Yes

GYROSCOPE

Yes

Yes

ACCELEROMETER

Yes

Yes

BLUETOOTH CONNECTIVITY

Yes

Yes

SMARTPHONE NOTIFICATIONS

Yes

Yes

SMARTWATCH BATTERY

Up to 10 days

Up to 10 days

GPS BATTERY

Up to 15 hours

Up to 15 hours

PHYSICAL SIZE

43.4 x 43.4 x 11.7 mm

43.4 x 43.4 x 11.7 mm

DISPLAY SIZE

1.2 in (30.4mm) diameter

1.2 in (30.4mm) diameter

DISPLAY RESOLUTION

240 x 240 pixels

240 x 240 pixels

WEIGHT

43 grams

43 grams

Garmin Approach S40

Garmin Approach S42

Key Differences - Garmin S40 vs S42

Approach S40

Approach S42

PRODUCT NAME

S40

S42

COLOR OPTIONS

Silver/Gray, White/Gold, Black

White/Silver, Rose Gold, Black

Garmin Approach S40

Garmin Approach S42

You’re probably thinking, surely there are some actual differences between these golf watches. While your instincts may be correct, it’s fundamentally clear that the Garmin Approach S42 is actually the Garmin Approach S40, albeit with a slightly different product name. 

The S42 is not an upgrade. It is literally the same watch, with exactly the same specs, and a slighty different selection of colors to choose from. 

Personally, I find this quite disappointing, because it is misleading. I’m not sure which genius at Garmin made this decision, but I can say that he/she put commercial interests (new models sell better) ahead of the interests of their customers. That is how you end up with a disingenuous upgrade like this. 

Key Features Found In Both Watches

Sunlight-visible Display

Sunlight-Readable

Looking into the sun might affect your shot, but not your ability to read your watch.

42,000 Pre-loaded Golf Courses

The Approach S40 and S42 come preloaded with more than 42,000 CourseView maps of golf courses around the world. Download updates for the course you play most often.

Green View with Manual Pin

Greenview

Go the distance when you know the distance. Green View lets you manually position the pin.

AutoShot Detection

Autoshot-Tracking

Take your shot, and track where it landed with AutoShot detection.

Smartphone Notifications

Smart_notifications

The Approach S40 and the S42 both offer smartphone notifications and 24/7 activity tracking.

15 Hour GPS Batttery Life

Battery_Life

Up to 15 hours in GPS mode means you can play more than one round on a single charge. That’s good news for avid weekend golfers that like to play on Saturday and Sunday like true champions. 

Garmin Approach S40

Garmin Approach S42