Garmin Enduro 2 has a killer feature I didn't know I needed

Garmin Enduro 2 has a killer feature I didn’t know I needed


Garmin Enduro 2’s top LED light illuminates the dark

Matthew Miller/ZDNET

Earlier this year I tested the Garmin Fenix ​​7X Sapphire Solar watch and enjoyed using the LED flashlight. However, the Garmin Epix’s AMOLED screen prompted me to use this watch instead. In September, the Garmin Enduro 2 arrival and despite all the other watches I’ve tested since, the Enduro 2 has earned a permanent place on my wrist.

While there are a ton of reasons to love the Enduro 2, it turns out that one feature I use pretty much every day is the built-in LED light on the top of the watch. It is advertised to be twice as bright as the Fenix ​​7X flashlight and just as the best camera is the one that is with you, the best flashlight can be the one that is always on your wrist.

Conclusion: Garmin’s Enduro 2 is the ultra-sporty watch to beat

The Many Ways I Use My Watch’s Flashlight

At first you might think having a flashlight on your watch is a novelty and you can even reassign the top left hotkey. Before switching things up, be sure to check out all the features that Garmin provides for the LED light. Here are several of the ways I use LED light in my daily life.

  • Illuminates the area under the Christmas tree while I fill the water in the stand
  • Helped me find a missing sock my dog ​​dragged under the bed
  • I lit the garage around the boxes to help me locate a screw while I was assembling an e-bike
  • Red light at night helps me find my way to and from the bathroom in the dark
  • Strobe mode is essential to make me visible when running in the dark
  • A missing ear was found under a sofa thanks to the reflection of light
  • The tire stem was on so I could inflate a deflated tire on my car at night
  • The trail in the woods was lit as we walked back to the campsite
  • Dog poo is never wasted on night walks around the neighborhood
  • Convenient for illuminating ship holds with both hands free
  • Read books at night while your partner sleeps
  • Investigate the cause of noises at night

There are many other ways to use a flashlight that is always with you. The one on the Garmin Enduro 2 and Fenix ​​7X is powerful enough to play the same role as the light on the back of your phone.


The LED light is well integrated into the top of the watch

Matthew Miller/ZDNET

How to use the flashlight

By default, when you double tap the top left button, the LED flashlight will turn on. Another double tap of that button turns it off, and at first you might think that’s it, but you’d be wrong. Go to the controls screen (press and hold the button on the top left of the Enduro or Fenix ​​7X), then select the flashlight icon for many more features.

Also: The 5 brightest flashlights

Once the flashlight app is launched, the start button on the top right is used to turn the light on and off. There are four white bars and one red on the screen. Tap the bars to choose white or red light brightness level. When you turn off the light, the watch will remember your last setting and activate the same light option the next time you turn on the flashlight.


One level for red and four for the white LED

Matthew Miller/ZDNET

In the flashlight app, press and hold the middle left button to access even more light settings. Here you can choose strobe or distress patterns. If you select strobe, available options include blitz, beacon, pulse, blink, and custom. You can select them and then scroll up and down to view the light pattern. The light pattern is also displayed at the top of the watch screen.

When you select distress, the light will flash SOS in white light while showing the owner and emergency contact on the face, so this can be useful if you find yourself in some sort of serious emergency.

Review: I put the Apple Watch Ultra through a Tough Mudder: Here’s how it held up

There are also flashlight strobe modes that you can configure for specific activities. For example, in a trail, scroll down to the strobe flashlight option. You can select the strobe to turn on after the sun goes down, then match the light to your cadence. This cadence option means that a backward swing will light up red and a forward swing will light up white. The intention here is that you can see ahead and then be seen by people behind you in red. Cadence mode works well enough, but you can also choose to shine the light in blink, pulse, beacon, or blitz.

What is the competition have?

Many other watches have a flashlight mode where a white image covers the entire display at maximum brightness. It works best on watches with OLED screens, but the glow of that only shines so far. The Apple Watch Ultra also has a night mode where a red color image is displayed to help you maintain your night vision.

Of all the other watches I’ve tested, the Apple Watch Ultra performs best and I could probably get away with most of the situations listed above. In side-by-side tests in total darkness with the Apple Watch Ultra, the Ultra’s white mode was about equal to level one out of four on the Garmin LED light. Night mode (red) is also about 25% as bright as the Garmin Enduro 2’s red mode, with red light being darker and now providing better night vision.

Most other watches have very limited visibility distance due to displaying a white image on the watch face and it’s best to use your phone’s LED light with other watches. With a Garmin Enduro 2 or Fenix ​​7X you can also use all functions of the watch with the LED light on.

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