Category Archives: Garmin Approach S5

Garmin Approach S5 vs S6

A comparison chart of product features and specifications between Garmin Approach S5 and S6  Golf GPS watch.

Note: This comparison by GPSCompared is a basic guide based on Garmin published specifications and features at their official website. And by no means that this comparison is definitive. There might be other similarities and differences which are not covered here.

Garmin Approach Golf GPS Watch
Garmin Approach S5Garmin Approach S6
ModelsGarmin Approach S5
Garmin Approach S5
Garmin Approach S6
Garmin Approach S6
Introduction DateGarmin Approach S5 was announced by Garmin on January 20, 2015Garmin Approach S6 was announced by Garmin on June 19, 2014
View product availability and current priceGarmin Approach S5 Golf GPS Watch at AmazonGarmin Approach S6 Golf GPS Watch at Amazon

What's Difference
Golfing Features
SwingTempo (measures backswing and downswing times as a ratio)NoYes
TempoTraining (audible tones convey ideal 3:1 backswing to downswing ratio)NoYes
SwingStrength™ (measures how hard you swing)NoYes
What's Common
Physical & Performance
Physical dimensions1.8" x 1.8" x 0.56" x (4.5 cm x 4.5 x 1.42 cm)1.8" x 1.8" x 0.56" x (4.5 cm x 4.5 x 1.42 cm)
Display size, WxH1.0" (2.54 cm) diameter1.0" (2.54 cm) diameter
Display resolution, WxH180 x 180 pixels180 x 180 pixels
Display typeHigh-res color touchscreenHigh-res color touchscreen
Color displayYesYes
Weight1.6 oz (46.6 g)1.6 oz (46.6 g)
BatteryRechargeable lithium-ionRechargeable lithium-ion
Battery life20 weeks (watch mode); 10 hours (GPS mode)20 weeks (watch mode); 10 hours (GPS mode)
Water rating5 ATM (50 meters)5 ATM (50 meters)
High-sensitivity receiverYesYes
Smart notifications (displays email, text and other alerts when paired with your compatible phone)YesYes
Maps & Memory
Course maps38,000 (preloaded)38,000 (preloaded)
Golfing Features
Touch-targeting (touch target on display to see the distance to any point)YesYes
Manual pin positioning (tap and drag flag on green for precise yardage)YesYes
Measures shot distance (calculates exact yardage for shots from anywhere on course)YesYes
Yardage to F/M/B (distance to front, middle and back of green)YesYes
Yardage to layups/doglegsYesYes
Tracks stats (putts per round, greens & fairways hit, average distance)YesYes
Digital scorecardyes (scoring options include Stroke Play and Stableford for a single player)yes (scoring options include Stroke Play and Stableford for a single player)
Computer scorecard review (save and review scores on computer)YesYes
Save locations (mark course points of interest for future reference)YesYes
AdditionalDedicated GreenView button: yesDedicated GreenView button: yes
Official Specs and Features
Learn more from the manufacturer site.Read more about Garmin Approach S5 at garmin.comRead more about Garmin Approach S6 at
Amazon's Customer Reviews
inclusive of the most helpful favorable review and the most helpful critical review (if available)Click here to read Garmin Approach S5 reviews from customersClick here to read Garmin Approach S6 reviews from customers
Where To Buy
View product availability and current priceClick on this link Garmin Approach S5 Golf GPS Watch at AmazonClick on this link Garmin Approach S6 Golf GPS Watch at Amazon

Introduction To Garmin Approach S5

Garmin Approach S5 Golf Watch came about seven months after the more featured S6 had been released. It sounds strange that the company did not actually bring S7, but it moved back instead to fill the gap left between the Approach S4 and S6.

It is not, however, a surprising strategy because it seems that Garmin simply wants to reach more golfers by bringing a similar device but with lower price tag.

There are some missing features from the previously released Garmin Approach S6, but most of the hardware specifications and functions remain the same.

Approach S5 Design

The recently announced Approach S5 looks very similar to the previously released Approach S6. Either of them measures at 1.8-inch H x 1.8-inch W x 0.56-inch D; each also weighs the same 1.6 oz.

The screen is 1.0-inch color touchscreen producing 180 x 180 pixels resolution. The GPS-enabled golf watch is powered by rechargeable Lithium-ion battery that provides up to 20 weeks of watch mode or 10 hours of life when GPS function is activated.

This new Garmin’s golf watch is still featuring USB interface and 5 ATM water rating.

Compared to Approach S6, the newly announced Approach S5 has some missing features such as swing dynamics including SwingTempo, SwingStrength, and TempoTraining. It does not have PinPointer function too. Features that remain are briefly outlined below.

Golfing Features

Despite the seemingly strategically backward movement from Garmin, the Approach S5 is still a feature-pack capable golf watch for most.

Most golfing features are still present and build quality is intact as well. The missing features are basically for personal skill development, so it does not really lose the essential golfing functions.

Approach S5 comes with more than 38,000 international golf courses pre-loaded, and there are free updates available.

Its color touchscreen will display any of those maps and allow user to see more detailed information about it including doglegs, water hazards, green shapes, and bunkers.

When GPS is activated, Approach S5 will automatically detect the courses nearest to your position, so you can select the proper course from the provided list.

Some functions are touchscreen-based such as viewing data of every hole and manual pin positioning. It is good to know that the screen is glove-friendly.

Green View feature makes it possible to see not only flag position, but to manually drag-and-drop the flag to get better approximation of yardage.

With Green view, the screen displays the actual layout and shape of the green, not a simple representation of how it looks. As the flag is relocated, the distance between where you stand and the flag will be automatically updated.

In addition to detailed course information, Approach S5 records score and player’s statistics such as input strokes, fairways hit, puts per round, etc.

All these statistics and score can be uploaded to Garmin Connect community for more accurate reviewing and progress tracking.

Additional Features

Apart from being a feature-packed golf watch, Garmin Approach S5 functions as smartwatch with the ability to display notification on your Bluetooth-connected compatible phone.

Notifications may include email, text messages, and other types of alerts. There is an odometer function to measure how far you actually walk down the course and how long it takes for you to finish the entire 18 holes.

It is worth mentioning that Garmin Approach S5 is tournament-legal under PGA regulations.

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