The Garmin Forerunner 165 is is the cheapest route to picking up a Garmin running watch with an AMOLED colour display.

Joining the Forerunner 265 and 965, the 165 is available in two versions – standard and music editions and Testers Nick, Mike and Kieran have all been putting in the marathon training time with the Forerunner 165 Music model.

Does the new Garmin impress and is a midrange running watch worthy of a place on your wrist? This is our multi-tester, running review of the Forerunner 165.

00:00 – Intro
00:09 – Price and key features
02:12 – What we liked
09:52 – What we didn’t like
17:04 – Verdict and alternatives

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Hey this is M from the Run testers and This is our multitester review of the Garian Foreigner 165 so here's those key Garmin forign 165 details it comes in two versions a Standard and music version which adds Wi-Fi and a 4 gbyte music player the Standard 465 cost £249 in the UK or $249 In the US and the music version is Priced at $289.99 in the UK or $299.99 in the US that means it's priced Within the 455 around the same price as The Garmin Viva active 5 and cheaper Than the for 255 as well as the more Expensive fora 265 it weighs 39 gr comes in 143 mm case Size option which makes it smaller than The 4 265 and a similar size to the Vivo Active 5 it has five physical buttons a 1.2 in 390x 390 resolution touchcreen And is paired with a removable 20 mm Silicone strap features wise it uses a Multi-gnss GPS setup so not the latest Garmin multiband support it uses Garmin's fourth generation Optical heart Rate sensor as opposed to the newer Generation 51 and does offer blood Oxygen saturation monitoring it works With Garmin coach gives you access to Garmin's Pace Pro pacing strategies lets You build running workouts and view race Predictions while you can use it for Interval trading it does lack garmin's

More advanced interval training supports It doesn't offer full mapping support it Does offer point-to-point navigation and The ability to follow breadcrumb Trails On the screen terms of Key Training Insights it offers training effect HRV Status recovery recommendations but Doesn't have the new training readiness Metric Smartwatch features include the Ability to view notifications Garing Connect IQ store access the ability to Access Garmin morning reports and music Playback controls for the standard Version with the added music player on The music model the battery numbers are That it can last up to 11 days in Smartwatch mode according to Garmin and A 19 hours GPS only battery life and up To 7 hours with GPS and music streaming For the music Model so likes for me on the 4Runner One65 start with the screen it's a Really nice design all around I'd say It's a lightweight watch nice bright Screen really responsive to touches like There are brands that have made much More expensive AMOLED touchcreen watches Than this that aren't any near as Responsive as Snappy as the one on the 165 it it does deliver the same kind of Experience you get from garmin's more Expensive AMOLED watches at a lower Price point and that's really the key Here like it's an AMOLED watch at a

Lower price and it is a really nice Screen it delivers on that front it's Bright to read in all conditions even When you're outside in the sun and it's A step up on memory and pixel displays When you're indoors or under cloud cover It's a lot brighter and easier to read I Find and just more enjoyable to interact With and considering the screen I was Also quite impressed by the battery life On the watch it's lasted four or 5 days On a charge quite reliably and for a Quite a small watch with a big bright Screen like this I think that's good Like in the past we were worried about AMOLED watches and sports watches Bringing them down to kind of Smartwatch Levels of battery like the Apple watch That lasting one or two days max but Actually the battery life and the screen Technology is now there that even with a Small watch like this with the bright Display which I had always on throughout My testing you're still going to get Several days of battery life and not Have to worry about finding the charger Every couple of days there is also the Option to turn the screen to rais awake And that will really bump up the battery Life to over a week the battery life Actually overall is a plus here whereas Normally you might fear it'll be a Negative with an AMOLED watch and the Thing I like I suppose about the watch

In general for me it does feel very much Like a successor to the 4Runner 245 Within gin's range which is a watch Really aimed at Runners it hasn't got Multisport features it doesn't have Cycling power support and stuff like That but is a really good watch that Offers useful extra features to Runners On top of very good basic tracking so The key running features on the watch Are really good I found that the uh GPS Accuracy has been comparable to that of A multiband watch in most situations you Get a little uptick in accuracy by Getting a multiband watch something like The coros pace 3 or garmin's multiband Watches but overall it's certainly good Enough on the 165 with the all systems Mode got the structured workout support Really clear data screens all that kind Of stuff that Garmin does really well And then you've got breadcrumb Navigation and music storage as useful Extras on the 165 music obviously that Do set it apart a little bit from other Watches because no one's really doing Music as well as Garmin in the sports Watch world and their bracom routing With turn by turn navigation is really Solid as well so yeah it's a nice little Package that I think offers a lot to Runners if not so much to other athletes The first thing I would say that's Really stood out for me has been the

Battery life because ultimately that is My biggest concern you've got a watch With an anim display I know that it will Drain the battery quicker than kind of Traditional kind of older generation Kind of display Technologies so that was My big thing here now I've got nowhere Near to the kind of stated 11 days in Smartwatch mode but that doesn't really Factor in the kind of regular loose of Kind of features like GPS tracking Notifications kind of music stream all The things that I have used and do use During my time with this watch now in Terms of my experience what I've seen is It's closer to kind of four to 5 days That's with kind of training or tracking Something or an activity for an hour I Think generally four to five days is how Regular you're going to have to be Charging this watch if you are tracking With it as well now that is mainly been With the kind of rais to weight gesture Support which generally that's what I Would use because I don't necessarily Need the o on display at all times if You do have the o on display it's Generally going to be or what I found It's been close to kind of two two days So a couple of days compared to kind of Five days so it's still pretty good but Ultimately you're going to be charging It more frequently another thing I think Is worth mentioning is the charging time

Or the charging speed that this watch Charges up is very quick and it's a bit Like what I've seen on kind of other Garmin AMOLED watches where I feel like Garmin has tried to make sure that these Are watches while they going to you're Going to have to charge them more Regularly they are going to charge Quicker than kind of its more Traditional display kind of packing Watches the other thing I would say is Now I was a bit disappointed it doesn't Have dual band GPS on the multiband GPS That kind know Garmin calls it or refers To it as what I found in my test it's Generally been actually pretty good and I've been using it against the multiband Mode on Gins 4965 I also been using it Against the duel bound mode on the Choros pace 3 and generally the GPS has Kind of matched up on most runs the Longer runs shorter runs it's generally Be fine there's been a disparity in Distance tracking but it's not been by An amount that I would be concerned About and you kind of look at the maps Routs and there's some differences there But ultimately I've been pretty satis With the GPS kind of performance overall And the last thing I'd say is and I've Kind of mentioned it you know I do use The features outside of run tracking so Things like notifications the kind of Music streaming um if I'm at the track I

Will use the music player and I can plug In my airpods and you know I don't have To what you know I have music when I'm Doing a track session so it's quite a Nice feature to have now I think those Features are enough for me in terms of Smartwatch features you know Notifications music kind of weather Reports the kind of Morning Report I Quite like as well too and I think you Know as a combination of running Features and Smartwatch features I think It's a good packaging if that's Something you are looking for plus that Kind of AMOLED display that you're Getting here as well too and touch Screen it just makes it a nice Experience to use outside of run Trackage so then the first of my likes Is a neat and compact design that you Get here the AMOLED display is obviously The hero when it comes to the 165 and It's really great it's nice and bright It's a big step on from what we've been Used to in most kind of running watches Running watch Land I mean I wouldn't Sacrifice a toe for it but it does make Your stats look nice and shiny and it's A joy to interact with the design Overall here though and build are pretty Basic in terms of materials but that Makes the watch nice and light and Comfortable there's a nice compact Disappearing feel to it on the wrist

Overall and if you're not a fan of bulky Watches this will appeal for sure the Strap is also nice and fuss free it's Easy to get a good fit it feels strong And robust love the fact that you can Swap it out screen real estate is ample Even though it's a smaller display the Touch screen and buttons are Snappy and Responsive and I really enjoy the level Of customization that Garmin now offers From your run data screens to your Glances you can tweak a lot of the fine Details here to set the watch up to Match your needs that's really really Handy now my second big tick for the 165 Is accuracy in my tests I found the GPS And the heart rate to be nicely accurate I've done a lot of testing up against The multiband GPS on the 265 and the 965 I've also done against the uro 2 much Pricier on the GPS front it really holds Its own when you dig into the tracks There are occasions where 165 deviates Slightly largely it clocks total Distances well within margin for error Against those devices and there isn't That much deviation on the tracks even In more testing conditions of the Barcelona half marathon and the London Winter 10K which takes you through the Builtup city of London when it comes to Optical heart rate performance garmin's Elevate V4 sensor has been pretty Reliable for me across steady runs and

Interval sessions it's tracked nicely Against the other Optical sensor for the Price of your 4Runners and it's not been Too shabby up against the polar h10 Chest track as well it's not infallible But as Optical heart rate goes it's been Solid and it's been a decent match for Those more expensive garments as Reliable I think as you're going to get On those final positive for me is on That breadth of features there are some Emissions on the 165 there's no training Status no training load no training Readiness but that's unreliable Unscientific gobbins anyway so don't Worry about that no je band GPS and if You want things like lactic threshold Estimates you need to upgrade but on the Whole Garmin has crammed a lot into the 4 R 165 particularly all the stuff that You want when you're actually running Most of what you need to run casually or Train and race up to a marathon is Catered for here there's plenty of Support if you're new to running from Features like suggested workouts Garmin Coach adaptive training plans and Recovery time recommendations all of That stuff is here so in terms of Running when you're moving the Performance is quite similar to what You'll get higher up so this is a pretty Fully featured watch and that's a big Tick so negative to me on the watch uh

Would one would be the heart rate Accuracy now we talk about this a lot With watches but I was thinking it would Be quite good with the 165 cuz it is Quite a small lightweight watch I tend To find with Garmin that means they're a Bit more accurate than some of the big Heavier watches but Garmin didn't put His latest heart rate sensor on this Watch and it was pretty poor for me Throughout my testing like frequently Just reading way too high or jumping up And down throughout workouts on 120 mile It just locked into my Cadence for the Entire time so my heart rate was way out Of whack you know it's going to be up And down for different people in warm Conditions it'll probably be a little Bit better but you know the heart rate Accuracy isn't great here something we Say a lot with watches I think you need To pair an external strap if you're Going to use the Fairly limited training Analysis on the watch gin has added some Training analysis to this watch as a Feature and to get the best from that I Think you're going to need an external Sensor because the H accuracy will skew It quite a lot if you're going to look At things like the anerobic or aerobic Effect of your workout is a negative for People in general not not so much for me Cuz I'm not a TR athlete but you know G Hasn't given it multisport mode and

Cycling power support it's separating it Out from which is like the 255 and 265 On that front it's a classic Garmin tick Boox exercise where they basically work Out what features to give to watches at Certain prices to try and push people Towards different ones but it's a bit of A shame other brands are just giving you Multisport uh modes at this price things Like the coros pace 3 so it's a shame It's not on there and though I talked About my G the GPS accuracy being good In my like section it is still a Negative and a shame for me that Multiband isn't on this watch it is on The 4255 which similar price point the 265 obviously has it as a much higher Price point but I don't know it doesn't Feel like something that would force People to upgrade within garmin's range And I think it would be a nice thing to Have on this watch especially when you Are competing against other brands like Coros who have the pace 3 with dual band G DPS on there you know it feels like Something that could be on there Obviously it is a drain on battery life But it's very easy to switch between Modes and the battery life is pretty Good on this watch like I said in the Like section so yeah certainly a shame You haven't got the dualband GPS I think For most people it won't be a deal Breaker for me it's a really important

Feature on Garmin watches cuz their dual Band GPS is so accurate so it's a shame We didn't just sneak on to the 165 okay So into the three things that maybe I Would say probably disappointed me most About the Garmin 4 165 and my time with It I think the first thing would be the Kind of training insights and the Training um kind of Analytics you're Getting on this watch now I totally Understand what gin has done here and It's kind of paired things back and it's Not giving you everything you would get On a 4 and a 965 that totally makes Sense for the I think the type of person That's probably going to be looking at This watch but I'm a little bit Disappointed to see that training Readiness hasn't made this or made it Into this watch and I know this hasn't Been a we haven't seen it on the kind of Cheaper more affordable end of kind of Gin's range but I feel like you know if Ever that metric and it's a metric you Know there to kind of guide you not Being definitive kind of advice but Guide you in terms of maybe whether you Should be doing a a tough training day Or whether you should kind of take a day Off or kind of think about what you're Going to do it feels like we make most Sense on a watch like this you know is Kind of for those beginner Runners who Are maybe picking up a watch for the

First time and I feel like it's I'm I'm A bit disappointed it's not there when You've got something like HRV status Which fuels that kind of feature but Ultimately in isolation I don't think It's as easy to get to grips with if you Are kind of know starting to look at That kind of aspect of your running and Tracking your runs ultimately the other Thing I would say is the GPS performance Has been very good for me overall I Think you know the fact that hasn't got Duban GPS here is a bit of a Disappointment particularly when you Look that that you can get dualband GPS And very good versions of it for less Money than this from other brands namely The cars Pace 3 and I think you know It's a shame that that hasn't been added To this watch I mean you're going to Have to go up you know not buy a massive Amount but things like the 255 do offer It so you know you can spend a little Bit money for that je pan GPS support And I think the other thing here for me As well is this kind of the the Difference between the standard and the Kind of music versions and the pricing Of those two versions because ultimately If you look at garmin's range this where Things get start to get a little bit Congested you could look at something Like the Gin Vivo active 5 which Essentially matches a lot of the

Features that you're getting here on the 165 but if you're paying you're Ultimately paying maybe £10 more for That music coming or music player coming As standard whereas you've got to pay Extra for on the 165 and I think when You look at the feature sets and there's There's there's a few things maybe that You're you're lacking on the Via active 5 from a running perspective that you Are not getting on the 165 but I think There's things like kind of the more Structured more advanced interval Training that you are getting the Via Active 5 that you're not getting on the 165 so again it's that kind of disparity And those those features being saved and Reserved for different watches where I Think yeah the music element of me and Having those two models particularly When you look at where the Vivo active 5 Stands in the range I'm a little bit Disappointed you're not getting that Music feature as standard for that kind Of cheaper price that the standard 165 Is so on to the things I was less Convinced by now while the AMOLED screen Is very nice you will pay for it in Battery life battery life is shorter Than you'll find on a 4 a 55 on a 265 or A 255 and the coros past 3 and Personally I found that I wanted more Than the 165 offers in my tests I got Between 5 and eight days of General

Training usage with around 5 to 6 hours Of GPS runtime built in without using Music that was before I had to put it on Charge twice I had to charge it after Just 5 days and I'm not a particularly Heavy user of the watch in between runs I have notifications off screen settings A tweak to save power and those kind of Things also if you use that music Function on this uh 165 with music You'll see it drain far far quicker a 1 Hour run using music burned 14% on mind Beyond that without music a 1 hour 25 Marathon burned 11% a 4-Hour Marathon Burn 21% so I'd say the claim 19-hour GPS runtime ring true and it might be Enough for many Runners but I personally Like a little more staying power so next Up for me is kind of price or value or Kind of discerning which watch to buy Before the 165 landed we had the 4un a 265 and Garmin pushed the price of that Watch way up the old 255 was 299 without Music 349 with the new 265 obviously Came with music but for north of £400 Now we've got the 4 165 at 290 with Music almost slots into the space at the 265 vacated so is the 165 basically the 265 in orbit name and the 265 devices Like a new model in between the old 255 And the 965 don't know garmin's lineup I Think is getting harder to decipher for What represents good value in the Features you might want or not want and

What you're getting I think there's two Ways of looking at this though if you're Not bothered by the bright screen and The music you might be better off Looking at the 4Runner 255 it packs a Much better battery life you get Dualband GPS and you can find deals on That watch you'll also get more post-run Training insights so overall that makes The 165 look like less value if you Don't care so much about the post-run Training insights or having a longer Battery life then during the run the Performance of the 165 is actually right Up there with a much pricier for and a 265 so all of a sudden based on Performance just for that moment of Running this does actually look like Good value now if you're happy to look Outside the Garmin stable I think the Corus pace 3 would be another really Good alternative to look at here again There's no AMOLED screen on that but you Do get dualband GPS a much longer Battery life and it's got the same sort Of almost lightweight fuss-free design Vibe going on with it Too fun it is that the 165 is a really Good option it's probably the option That makes the most sense for most Runners within garmin's range if you do Want that AMOLED screen which I do think Is an upgrade like if you don't like Those screens that's perfectly fine

There are load watches out there that You can buy and make a bit of a saving By getting a non- AMOLED screen and I Think that will work for lots of Runners As well but I think the AMOLED here Doesn't come at a huge cost either in Terms of price or battery life so I do Think it's a really nice feature to have On a watch and it's probably the running Watch I'd look at in garmin's range if I Was looking for a really well-rounded Watch uh that offers loads of features At a lower price point than some of the Big hitters like the 965 or even the 265 When you're comparing it to the 265 You're going to get a reasonable upgrade There with dual band GPS and things like Training readiness I don't think it's an Essential upgrade for most people unless OB you're a triathlete and need that Multisport mode 265 is a fantastic watch But is a lot more expensive than the 165 And I if I was a runner I'd be looking At the 165 for sure I just think you get Enough here to really satisfy everything You're going to need and then if you're TR athlete you probably will have to Look at upgrading and then around the Same kind of price there are watches of Amed screens that are fantastic the Corus pace 3 I still think is probably The best all round value you know Whatever you want to call it watch for Runners You' got great battery life

You've got dual band GPS which is more Accurate than has been on chorus watches In the past I think it's a really Accurate GPS watch it's very lightweight Nice design you know it's a little bit Cheaper the extra features are kind of There you get you do get breadcrumb Navigation the music storage is a bit Iffy the way chorus does it because it's All drag and drop but Overall the corus pace 3 is probably the Watch I'd lean towards buying myself if I was starting from scratch again now Just because it is such a well-rounded Watch you don't get the AMOLED screen But I think the battery life and the Dual Band GPS and the slightly lower Price is a fair tradeoff so that's a Really good watch to consider and then The Gin 4 and a 255 if you want to stay Within garmin's ecosystem which Obviously a lot of Runners are already In and it is very good I think you get Better Music Experience from that watch You do get dual band GPS multisport Modes and all that and the 255 without The moled screen like you non Amed Screens are still nice I prefer an moled Screen but it really depends on how much You're willing to pay extra for it and That's a really good watch people would Rather have a triathlon mode and dual Band GPS over the AMOLED screen on the 165 at around the same kind of price so

Yeah I think it's a nice addition to the Garmin's lineup for sure I do think it Was needed I think they needed something At the lower end because that's where Corus in particular is putting out some Very strong watches it's not quite as Cheap as I'd like it to be in the UK but Actually in the US the price is really Quite good and like I said earlier in my Mind it read do almost feel like a Successor to the 4un a 245 which was Still the watch I was recommending to Lots of Runners who wanted the Garmin Just because it does such all the Running stuff really well and it was so Much cheaper than the newer models I Think this is now a good price to give You a load of great running features a Lovely screen a nice design and then Some really useful extras Light Breadcrumb navigation and music which You know you'll know yourself if you're Going to use a lot or not but I use Navigation quite a lot I don't use music So much but I really like having it on My watch and it's all in a very Attractive package works well yeah can't Really f it too much and it'll be a Watch lookout for in sales because Garin Watches always pop up in sales even in The year they released so it will be an Even better value option to Runners uh In those periods now before I get into The verdict some context for me my go-to

Watch is the Garmin and Juro 2 which is A big old rugged beast but I love the Big screen real estate and the fact that You only have to charge it once a month Is a win for me that staying P just Really suits the way that I run on my Running needs and my sort of slightly Lazy personality really well but battery Life aside I've really enjoyed using the 4run 165 of music it's been a refreshing To wear something that's more compact The tracks runs as effectively as the Bulky more premium pricey devices and I Think Garmin has produced another very Capable watch here that competes on Reliability and for the bright screen It's standard solid Garmin Fair overall That tis many of the right boxes and has Condensed a lot of the best bits that You find on gan's more premium watches Into a simpler somewhat cheaper model Also in that more compact package that Some I think would enjoy if you've been Hankering after a bright crisp display But the 265 price has put you off this Is definitely an option but it's not Just about that bright screen it's Backed up by a very reliable largely Fully featured watch however if you can Foro the amalo screen and the music the Non-music 4Runner 255 might be a better Value option so my vot it's on the Garmin 4L 165 I think overall my Experience has been very good I mean I

Think the main thing as I said was you Know would that Amo display massively Impact on the kind of battery level that You would get on this watch compared to Other watches around it now you Definitely can get or spend a little bit More and get a little bit more battery Life but I think ultimately for most People wanting something that can last a Week worth of training this is going to Be a watch that's going to serve you Well I think also things like GPS Performance I don't think you're Massively missing out or most people Aren't massively miss out on that dual Bound GPS kind of support that you can Again pay a little bit extra for things Like the 255 and you can get that there As well I think in terms of the core Running features the training insights And features you're getting here the Smartwatch um features you're getting Here on the 165 as well and that AMOLED Display it really kind of elevates how It is what it's like to use as a running Watch and as a smart watch I think as a Package makes it a very affordable good Performing watch at a good price I think Ultimately it's going to be a watch that A lot of people are going to look at the Other side of it is you look at other Watches that are out there that may be Kind of offering a lot of what Garmin Does minus the kind of Amo display

Namely the carus pace 3 which like the 4165 has that kind of bradc navigation Has all the kind of running modes kind Of extra running analysis as well too But does have that band GPS and it does Perform very very well and you're Getting very good battery life when you Don't have that amade display to have to Think about powering as well and then I Think about and I've kind of mentioned The Gin Viva active 5 which is slightly More expensive than the standard 165 and You're getting music you are getting a Kind of kind of fancy bezel on there You're getting kind of similar levels of Battery life you're getting the kind of More advanced interval training kind of Mode there as well too a little bit more On sleep uh monitoring a little bit more Wellness monitoring and those things That you care about then it may be worth Looking at the Vivo active 5 I think if You've been looking at the 265 the 965 And they felt a little bit too expensive For you the main things for me you are Lacking from the 165 to the 265 really Is that kind of duelband GPS support That you're missing out a little bit More on the training analysis side of Things which I think most people are Probably going to live will be able to Live without and maybe a little bit more Bachelor but not a huge amount the 965 Really it's about that kind of extra

Mapping you get then again you're Getting the best of Gins features in Terms of that training analysis and as Kind of insight so I think if you Looking for an affordable Garmin with an Amo display and you're looking for that Strong performance then this is Absolutely worth looking at I do think If you're looking at or looking for the Best value running watch I still feel Like the corus pace 3 is the best option If you can live without that Amal Display but if you want the amade Display with that kind of Garmin Ecosystem the best or you know as much Of the kind of running smarts that you Really kind of need or most people need Then this is definitely worth looking at Okay so there you have it that is our Multitest to take on the Garmin 4165 now don't worry we definitely have Got some watch comparison videos on the Way to keep a lookout for those now if You got any questions about the 4165 or Any other watches do let us know in the Comments as always like And subscribe Hit that little bell to find out about Our latest videos and yeah we see you For next round Test's Video