The Garmin S60 Vs The Vivoactive 4

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Choosing a golf watch can be difficult. There are so many of them that have a multitude of features. But it seems like there is never that perfect one that lines up with all the sports and exercises that you like to do.

That is a problem that we have run into – some of us like golfing and running while some of us like to ski and do Pilates. It seemed like there was no universal fitness watch that we could all wear and be happy with. In the end, the perfect fitness watch for you will depend on how you like to work out and exercise.

But in this review, we think we have hit on a couple of watches that cover almost all of the bases. We selected these 2 watches based on the idea that we wanted to highlight watches that would fit the needs of as many people as possible.

If you are having trouble choosing a fitness watch or selecting one to give as a gift, the following review will shed some light on 2 very viable choices for golf and fitness lovers.

The Garmin Approach S60

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Are you or the person you are buying a fitness watch for a golfer? Look no further than the Garmin S60. The Garmin S60 is the pinnacle of golf watch technology. It is Garmin’s latest and greatest effort towards improving golfers’ games and making it easy to play a round.

It is a sleek, full-color, touchscreen display smartwatch that gives aerial view maps of over 40,000 courses from around the world. It has a TruSwing golf sensor that automatically detects the kind of shot you are taking and records its distance.

All you have to do is start it up when you get to the course and it will automatically detect which course you are on and pull up all pertinent information on it including distance to the front, back and center of the green.

The Garmin Approach S60 is not just a golf watch though. It also features the most fitness functions and apps of any Garmin golf GPS watch.

It includes a pedometer with a daily step goal, a sleep monitor, it keeps track of how many calories you burn on any given day, an active bar alert that notifies you when you’ve been idle too long, an odometer and apps for cycling, running, rowing, paddle boarding, snowboarding, swimming and skiing.

The Garmin Vivoactive 4  

This watch is a fitness enthusiasts dream. It keeps track of your pulse, heartrate, breathing, sleep and even alerts you when you should drink water based on your level of activity.

One of the features that amazed us the most about this watch was the incident detection. Using GPS, the Vivoactive 4 can actually send alerts to your emergency contacts if something should happen while you are out running and doing certain other outdoor activities.

The Vivoactive 4 comes with free marathon training plans but you can also download your favorite workout programs. One of our team members really liked the animated yoga workout regimens that come with this watch. She said it was very useful and convenient during her home yoga exercises.

Like the Approach S60, the Vivoactive 4 also comes with preloaded activity profiles for running, pool swimming, cycling and more.

And if you are looking to save time at the gym and not have to carry your phone around, this is a great watch to have. It automatically detects strength training activities and keeps track of your reps.

Price Point Comparison

In most cases, you will find that the price point for both of these watches is almost the same. You can expect to pay around $300 for both the S60 and the Vivoactive 4.

Performance Comparison

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There are some things to note here. First of all, the Vivoactive has a slightly larger watch face than the S60. The S60 is 1.2 inches while the Vivoactive 4 is about 1.7 inches.

Another glaring difference is that you can listen to music with the Vivoactive 4 (when paired with headphones or other devices) which is not an option with the S60. You can even use Spotify and other music streaming apps on the Vivoactive 4.

They both feature a color touchscreen interface but the Vivoactive 4 weighs less than the S60 (1.2 ounces versus 1.6 ounces).

You can download custom digital watch faces, apps and widgets on both watches through the Garmin Connect IQ store. And of course, the Garmin Vivoactive 4 has no golf GPS features.

Pros & Cons of the Garmin Approach S60


  • Many helpful golf features
  • The wristband is easy to change without tools
  • The battery lasts for at least 3 full rounds of golf
  • Applications for both golfing and fitness activities
  • Sleek, attractive design
  • Easy to use out of the box


  • Limited fitness functions
  • Downloaded apps can be buggy
  • Can’t play music through it
  • Garmin customer support isn’t the best

Vivoactive 4 Pros & Cons

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  • Tons of fitness features
  • Preloaded and downloadable workout plans
  • You can listen to music through it
  • Lightweight
  • Full color display
  • You can sync it to your phone for push notifications


  • No golfing features
  • Limited battery life
  • Tracking features can be buggy
  • Requires premium music streaming subscription for some apps

What We Recommend

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As you can see, these are two very high quality watches that offer a lot in their own respects. We tried to make a decision without our bias towards golf and golf watches and give a recommendation based on overall value.

With that being said, we still recommend the Approach S60. It just offers more overall. Yes, it lacks many of the fitness tracking and music features that the Vivoactive 4 offers, but it still comes with the essential fitness tracking features that we view as non-superfluous.

Not that the added fitness features of the Vivoactive 4 are superfluous, but they are more useful to a niche market. You basically get more of what you need for golf with the S60 so be sure to check it out!


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Vivo Active 4

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