My husband and I decided to buy the Garmin Forerunner 305 for ourselves for Christmas. We found such a cheap price for the Garmin Forerunner 305 that we just didn’t want to pass up on the opportunity. It’s been too many too many years since my old heart rate monitor, the Polar Beat has been fully functioning and with my quest to qualify for the Boston Marathon, we thought that it was time to take the plunge.
When I started researching and reading reviews for the heart rate monitors, I came across the best price for the Garmin 305 at Amazon. This was a couple years ago and the Garmin Forerunner 305 was cheaper than it is today. I couldn’t believe that I could get a heart rate monitor and a GPS system (and more) for the same price as what I would pay for a decent heart rate monitor. Just for curiosity , I dug out my old Polar Beat heart rate monitor (that was year’s old) and on the box it had a price of $139.99. The Beat never had any features – no target heart rate, average heart rate or upper and lower limits. Just a plain and simple heart rate monitor which was actually very useful to my training in it’s day.
Now that I was interested in GPS systems instead of a simple heart rate monitor, I thought I should compare the Garmin Forerunner 305 vs 405. At the time of writing this, the Garmin Forerunner 405 was slightly out of our price range at $349.99, and I’m not sure why, but they sure have come down a lot in price over the last 2 years.
Because of the price difference, we chose to buy the Garmin Forerunner 305, but I still wanted to compare the two units. The easiest way for me to compare the technology of the two GPS/heart rate monitor systems was to draw up a table, which I would like to share:
Garmin Forerunner 405 vs 305 – A Comparison
|Features||GARMIN FORERUNNER 305||GARMIN FORERUNNER 405|
|Weight||2.72 oz||2.11 oz|
|Dimensions (WxHxD)||2.1″ x 2.7″ x 0.7″||1.9″ x 2.8″ x .65″|
|Display Size||1.3″ x 0.8″||1.06 diameter|
|Battery Life||10 hours||8 hours|
|Lap Heart Rate|
|Average Heart Rate|
|Heart Rate Zones|
|Lap History||stores 1000 laps||stores 1000 laps|
|Waypoints/Favorites||stores 100 locations||stores 100 locations|
|Routes||stores 50 routes|
|Wireless Heartrate Transmitter|
|Unit to Unit/PC Transfer
(shares data wirelessly
with support of USB ANT stick)
Differences Between Garmin Forerunner 305 and 405
The biggest seen difference of the two units was the size. Some don’t like that the Garmin 305 is bulky, however those that use it say that it is very comfortable to wear.
The Forerunner 405 has a whole different look and feel in that instead of the square bulky look, it is round and looks like a watch and could double for a watch, since it has all the sport watch features. Surrounding the watch face is a touch bezel that allows the user to scroll through the functions screens, unlike the 305 that is operated through push buttons. Though user reviews felt that the touch bezel was awkward to operate.
The navigation capabilities were comparable on both units. They both let you mark or find locations and also navigate you back to your starting point. I think that this will be a very nice feature if you go for a run anywhere that is unfamiliar and there is the possibility of getting lost. This would definitely let me be more adventuresome in my route planning.
After reading multiple reviews of both units, it was clear to me that the Garmin 305 was a very well liked product. It performed well and would work great for our needs. And compared to the Polar Beat – well, there is no comparison. We bought our Garmin Forerunner 305 through Amazon a couple years ago. I have put it to the test and have written a very detailed Forerunner 305 review.
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