Garmin vívoactive Review

The Garmin vivoactive has been retired. Check out our current recommendations for today's best golf rangefinders..

'Garmin vivoactive'

Garmin vivoactive
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This is our Garmin Vivoactive review. If you are looking for a model that includes heart rate, check out the Vivoactive HR.

Garmin vivoactive User Rating: 4.00 Stars 4.00 out of 5 (1613 reviews)

Score compiled from multiple sources.

The Garmin Vivoactive gets good reviews as a multi-sport watch. However, there is minimal feedback from golfers on this watch. We don’t think it’s the best golf watch out there, but if you want a multi-sport smartwatch that you can use for golf as well running, biking, swimming, and/or walking, this is a really good value.

If you are looking for a golf watch with a nice activity tracker built-in, we suggest the Garmin Approach S20.

For Golfers: You get distance to the front, middle and back of every green, plus distances to layups and doglegs. It also has a shot measuring feature and a stroke-play scorecard for one player.

What you won’t get that can be found on most golf watches are distances to hazards, green shapes, and in many cases manual pin placements. If you’re not looking for a multi-sport watch, we suggest taking a look at our picks for “Best Golf Watch“.

Beyond Golf: The vívoactive is thin and lightweight, with a very readable screen. Apps for golf, running, swimming, biking and walking are built right into the watch. Garmin has been a leader in all of these sports watch markets for years.

The vívoactive has an accelerometer, so it also serves as a fitness tracker to track your steps and daily activity. It will even remind you if you haven’t been moving for awhile.

Like the latest Garmin golf watches, the vívoactive will have access to notifications from your smartphone. And like any good smartwatch, you’ll also be able to customize the look of your watch face!

Garmin also allows third-party developers to create apps for the vívoactive. That means many other apps will be available and already you can find a weather app, stock market app and more. We think it’s possible that a third-party golf app might even be able to make it a better golf watch in the future.

Garmin vivoactive Specifications
Garmin vivoactive
Course Download Fees No
Pre-loaded with Courses N/A
Full Hole Views Yes
Slope / Elevation N/A
Battery Life 10 hrs / 3 wks
Battery rechargeable lithium
Size (Width x Height x Depth) 1.52 in. x 1.72 in. x .32 in.
Measure Shot Distance Yes
Screen Size 1.13 x .8
Resolution 205 x 148
Display Type color touchscreen
Weight 1.34 oz.
Rainproof Yes
Touch Screen Yes
Touch Targeting No
Manual Pin Positioning No
Stat Tracker No
Digital Scorecard Yes
Computer Analysis Tools Yes
Ground Verified N/A
Alternate Targets Yes
Green Rotates to your shot angle N/A
USGA Compliant (local rule) Yes
Notes Where to start... Smartwatch, fitness tracker, all sports watch.
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  1. Bill Hensley says

    I have a golf course downloaded to my iPhone connect and when I play the course it finds gps and transfers info, it says but there isn’t any yardages and it doesn’t function at all.
    any ideas why this is happening. It seems to work on other courses ok only this one doesn’t work.

  2. Nick Briggs says

    The Glen Golf Course in North Berwick does not appear to be available to download from Garmin Connect. Why is this?

  3. Valentino Yrastorza says

    Can I download more than 1 golf course on my Vivoactive gps watch?

    • Golf Rangefinder Shop says

      Hi Valentino. I believe you can that you can download more than one golf course on Garmin Vivoactive because the manual indicates that you only have to download a course before the first time you play it.

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