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Garmin Forerunner 745 vs 945

Garmin Forerunner 745 vs 945

Garmin is an industry leader in fitness smartwatches. With their recent release of the 745, you likely want to compare the Garmin Forerunner 745 vs. 945 before making your purchase. 


Thanks to its excellent battery life, extra storage, and advanced features, the 945 is the best watch. However, both watches have their assets. We’ll be showing you a detailed comparison between the two to help you with your decision.

Garmin Forerunner 745


Garmin Forerunner 945


Garmin Forerunner 745 vs 945: 745 Summary

The 745 is a brand-new watch for athletes who want to track their stats. It’s a good option for people who want a smaller watch and don’t mind a shorter battery life with less storage. 

Forerunner 745 Summary
Garmin Forerunner 745

745 Technical Specifications

Below are the technical specifications of the 745.

  • Size: 43.8 x 43.8 x 13.3 mm
  • Wrist circumference: 126 – 216 mm
  • Display size: 1.2” diameter
  • Display resolution: 240 x 240 pixels
  • Weight: 47 grams
  • Battery life: 7 days on smartwatch mode, up to 16 hours on GPS mode without music
  • Water Rating: 5 ATM


  • Smaller diameter making it a good option for narrow wrists
  • More economical
  • Lighter by 3 grams 
  • Suggests workouts 


  • Seven days of battery life in smartwatch mode
  • Less storage for maps, activities, and music


  • Metrics for biking, running, and swimming
  • Extensive outdoor activity profiles from kayaking to skiing
  • Streams music
  • Workout suggestions
  • ConnectIQ options for applications
Forerunner 945 Features Summary
Garmin Forerunner 945

Garmin Forerunner 745 vs 945: 945 Summary

Ideal for athletes who put lots of hours under their belt, the 945 has the latest technology, superb battery life, and much more storage space. 

945 Technical Specifications

Below are the technical specifications of the 745.

  • Size: 47 x 47 x 13.7 mm
  • Wrist circumference: 130 – 220 mm
  • Display size: 1.2” diameter
  • Display resolution: 240 x 240 pixels
  • Weight: 50 grams
  • Battery life: 14 days on smartwatch mode, up to 36 hours on GPS mode without music
  • Water Rating: 5 ATM


  • 14 days of battery life in smartwatch mode
  • More storage space including up to 1,000 songs
  • Offline maps
  • Golf mode with over 40,000 golf maps


  • More costly
  • Larger and slightly heavier

Features Face to Face

When comparing the Garmin 745 vs. 945, this may surprise you: both watches share a number of the same features, although in some cases, they diverge in the depth those features offer.

We’ll walk you through the key features of these two watches. At the end of this section, we’ll explain why the 945 is our favorite choice.

  • Accurate and high-tech GPS
  • Ultra-lightweight with a durable and waterproof design
  • Music syncing
  • Contactless payment
  • Safety tracking features
Garmin 745 vs 945 side by side comparison


The 745 and 945 are designed to withstand heavy activity, sweat, and the outdoors. Both watches are equipped with a strong silicone band and fiber-reinforced polymer. Additionally, the durable Corning Gorilla Glass DX lens ensures the screen remains sharp and responsive.

Both watches have a water rating of 5 ATM. They can withstand pressure from a water depth of up to 50 meters. So, you can swim, dive, and be out in the elements without ruining your watch.  

Winner: Tie 


Never worry about missing a workout thanks to the smart clock technology in the 745 and 945 since you can set an alarm clock or timer. The watches also come with a stopwatch, sunrise and sunset times, and automatic daylight savings time changes.

These watches offer other daily smart features such as weather reports, a calendar app, and “Find my phone” and “Find my watch” support. Since the 945’s dimensions are 47 x 47 x 13.7 mm versus the 745’s 43.8 x 43.8 x 13.3 mm, it’s easier to read the screen.

Winner: 945

Both Forerunners have the Assistance Feature


Feel safe with your 745 or 945 on remote trails or a solo night out on the town, thanks to their safety and tracking features.


If you feel unsafe, manually send your location to your emergency contacts directly from your watch. Alternatively, the watches sense if an incident is occurring and will automatically notify your emergency contacts.


Since the 945 has twice the battery life as the 745, you’ll be able to stay out longer having peace of mind that you’ll have access to the safety feature.


Winner: 945

Storage Space

Both the 745 and 945 offer storage space, but you’ll need to decide how much space you’ll need before making your decision. 


The 945 offers storage space for 1,000 songs plus plenty of room for maps and activities.

On the other hand, the 745 can only hold up to 500 songs. You can also download maps and activities, but you’ll have less space to do so than the 945.


Your smartwatch will download your playlist from your favorite streaming services such as Spotify, Amazon Music, and Deezer.


Winner: 945

Garmin Coach

Put your days of paying for a personal trainer behind you by using the Garmin Coach. Both the 745 and 945 offer tailored training plans from experienced coaches. You’ll have access to numerous fitness plans, and the workouts will sync to your watch. 


The 745 differs from the 945 because it offers daily workout suggestions. Suggestions are tailored based on your typical activity.

Winner: 745


Discover the benefits of a three-tier satellite system; GPS, GLONASS, and Galileo. Both watches come equipped with this precise tracking tool. Multi-GNSS is ideal for people who exercise on off-the-beaten-path type locations that aren’t tracked well by GPS alone.


Winner: Tie 

Sports Apps

Let’s face it—no one wants to do the same routine every day. With Garmin’s built-in sports apps in the 745 and 945, you’ll never have to worry about your exercises not being correctly recorded.


Activity profiles are numerous, including triathlon, cycling, swimming, elliptical, and stair-stepper, among others. Doing a race or brick workout? No problem. Simply switch up your sport with the press of a button.


The 945 offers more storage space for sports apps than the 745.


Winner: 945

VO2 Max

Do you want to know how you’ll perform before your foot even hits the pavement? With the VO2 Max feature in both the 745 and 945, its metrics will let you know how well you can expect to train before starting your workout. 


A variety of measurements go into pre-judging performance, including heat and altitude. The 945 offers topographical maps, so you’ll be able to have a better understanding of the terrain you’re traversing. 


Winner: 945

Vo2 Max Features on the Garmin 745 and 945

Heart Rate 

When you wear a 745 or 945, your heart rate will constantly be monitored. You’ll be alerted if it gets too high or low when you’re not exercising. When you’re working out, you can monitor your heart rate for any activity, including if you’re underwater. 


Winner: Tie 

Running Dynamics

Ideal for runners wanting to improve their speed, the 745 and 945 both offer the option to add running dynamics to your smartwatch. When combined with an accessory, this feature will measure your running metrics like stride length, cadence, and balance.


Long distance runners will find the 945 a better value thanks to its long battery life.


Two Great Options from the Garmin Forerunner Series

Winner: 945

Performance Condition

During the first 6 to 20 minutes of your workout, the performance condition feature found in the 745 and 945 will analyze your progress. It becomes more accurate with time as it assesses your fitness level. 


Performance condition is an excellent motivator for athletes. The higher the number on the screen, the more likely you are to perform well that day.


Winner: Tie 

Training Status

The 745 and 945 are equipped with a training status, which will let you know if your training is higher, lower, or average based on data from your fitness history.


Provided by Firstbeat, the training status feature is designed to reward balance. If you push yourself too hard and too often, your calculation will decrease. Similarly, if you take too much time off from your average training routine, your status will be negatively impacted.


Since the 745 offers tailored daily workout suggestions, it will help you maintain balanced activity.


Winner: 745

Training Status and Maintenance 745 vs 945

Training Effect and Training Load

The training effect tool is another prediction feature that the 745 and 945 share. Garmin knows you work out because you want results, so the training effect analyses how your current workouts could improve your future endurance, speed, and power.

There’s a training effect feature for both aerobic and anaerobic workouts. Since the training effect adjusts in real-time, you can push yourself more or less depending on the aerobic and anaerobic numbers. By doing so, it puts you in control of the future fitness results you’re striving for.

When it comes to training load, your smartwatch will measure your exercise volume from the last seven days. It will compare this to your recent training history and optimal fitness range. 

Winner: Tie 

Pulse OX Sensor and Body Battery Energy Monitor

The Pulse OX Sensor offers an understanding of how well you’re sleeping and adjusting to altitude if you’re in a high-altitude area. 

To supplement this sensor, the Body Battery Energy Monitor in the 745 and 945 will alert you to the best times for activity and rest, using energy level monitoring technology.

The 945 offers up to 14 days of battery life, so it’s ideal for 24/7 monitoring, especially if you’ll be spending time in areas without power.

Winner: 945

Menstrual Tracking

Women can use their 745 or 945 to track their menstrual cycle and any physical and emotional symptoms they experience. In addition to keeping track of irregularities, the menstrual tracking feature is perfect for women who want to plan for upcoming races.

Winner: Tie

Garmin Pay Features 745 vs 945

Garmin Pay

Forget fumbling with cash and credit cards in your wallet or purse. With the Garmin Pay system that’s included in both the 745 and 945, checkout is easy with their contactless payment system.


Winner: Tie 

Smart Notifications

If you want to leave your phone behind while working out but still want to be notified of incoming emails, texts, and alerts, you can set up your 745 or 945 accordingly. Garmin’s notification software is compatible with Apple iOS and Android.


Working with your smartwatch a lot increases the use of the battery. For this reason, the 945 is ideal for those planning to rely on smart notifications since it has twice the battery life as the 745.


Winner: 945

Connect IQ Store

With Connect IQ, you can download apps from Google Play and the App Store, add data fields, and customize the watch face. Keep in mind that the 945 offers more storage you can utilize with Connect IQ than the 745.


Winner: 945

Garmin Connect

Exercising can feel like a solo endeavor, so Garmin Connect offers you the opportunity to interact with a large online community. 


By syncing your 745 or 945 watch to the Garmin Connect app, you can communicate and even compete with other users. The app also allows you to post your results on social media.


Winner: Tie 

Garmin Forerunner 745


Garmin Forerunner 945



Although the 745 and 945 share many features, when comparing the Garmin Forerunner 745 vs. 945, the 945 is the clear winner. 


The 945 offers double the battery life, topographical map functions and has twice as much music space. It’s also a larger watch for easier viewing of the screen.


That being said, the 745 is newly released and is a strong contender, especially for people looking for a more economical option and daily workout suggestions.

Stand Out Features

Now that we’ve taken a look at Garmin 945 vs. 745 features regarding their similarities, let’s take a look at where they diverge. 


  • Battery life: The 945 lasts for an incredible 14 days on smartwatch mode, whereas the 745 lasts for seven days. When it comes to GPS mode without music, the 945 lasts up to 36 hours and the 745 up to 16 hours.
  • Topographical maps: Hike, run, or bike knowing you’ll be guided with the 945’s colorful onboard maps. They can be used in the city, but this feature is ideal for trail hikes and runs. The 945 also offers ClimbPro maps to map your current and upcoming climbs as well as turn-by-turn navigation and suggested routes with round-trip routing.
  • Golf mode: Triathlete golfers will love that the 945 comes with 40,000+ preloaded golf maps. 
  • Workout suggestions: The 745 offers daily workout suggestions based on your training load and status. Workout suggestions is a key difference from the 945, which doesn’t offer this feature.
  • Price: The 945 costs $100 more than the 745. Is it worth it? We think so. But it’s important to analyze your own fitness smartwatch needs and budget to determine which watch is best for you.


Long story short? When comparing the differences between the Garmin Forerunner 945 vs. 745, the 945 excels in areas that are important to most athletes.


However, the 745 is a reliable option for athletes looking for a more economical option. It’s smaller and equipped with exercise and health stats, making it a good contender among fitness watches. 


When comparing the Garmin 745 vs. 945, it’s important to note that both watches have a lot to offer, but they do have key differences. Here’s a closer look at which watch is the best for you. 

Use the Garmin Forerunner 745 if:

  • You have a smaller budget.
  • You prefer wearing smaller watches.
  • You’d like daily workout suggestions 

If you’re looking for a more economical option that comes equipped with decent exercise features, the Forerunner 745 is a great choice. You can check it out here. 

Use the Garmin Forerunner 945 if:

  • You’re a high performing athlete requiring a smartwatch with long battery life.
  • You run or hike on trails frequently so you can utilize the topographical maps.
  • You have a big music collection and use apps that require lots of storage space. 
  • You’re a golfer.

If you’re an athlete that racks up workout hours and wants the latest fitness smartwatch technology, the Forerunner 945 is an excellent option. It’s available here. 

Regardless of the watch you choose, you can be sure your 745 or 945 Forerunner will utilize smart technology to keep you on track with your fitness goals. 

Picture of Robby McClung

Robby McClung

This article was written by the editorial staff of the Canaan Valley Running Company and Robby McClung. Robby is the founder of the Canaan Valley Running Company. You can read more in the about section of the website on Robby and the Canaan Valley Running Company.

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