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Coros Apex Pro 2 Review

This watch offers the best battery life for its size, a great interface, and our favorite mobile companion app, all for less than the top premium models
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Coros Apex Pro 2 Review
Credit: Coros
Price:  $449 List
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Manufacturer:   Coros
By Matthew Richardson ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Jan 30, 2023
74
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#7 of 13
  • Features - 20% 7.0
  • Battery Life - 20% 7.0
  • Ease of Use - 20% 8.0
  • Accuracy - 20% 8.0
  • Design - 20% 7.0

Our Verdict

With an 88% increase in battery performance, the Coros Apex Pro 2 has the longest battery life for a 47mm watch. A new dual-frequency GPS chip for added accuracy and an all-new heart rate monitor are also included in this new iteration. Unfortunately, there are few added software updates to compete with the health metrics other platforms provide, and this watch loses the price accessibility the older models had. There are better value watches for your money, but despite the bump in price for this newest version, this could still be the model for you if you prioritize battery life.
REASONS TO BUY
Excellent battery life
Great mobile application
Sleek premium design
REASONS TO AVOID
Scroll wheel requires screen lock
Pricey
Lacks ANT+
Editor's Note: This newest version of the Apex Pro line was added into our lineup on January 30, 2023.

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Bottom Line Industry-leading battery life and usability, this is one watch to consider if you really are concerned about battery lifeGreat craftsmanship and design with an updated UI, menu, and AMOLED displayIf road and urban running is your top priority there is no watch on the market better than this modelThis watch excels as an affordable GPS companion, offering value and dependable accuracyAn entry-level GPS watch that does everything you need without the advanced features found on the most premium models
Rating Categories Coros Apex Pro 2 Suunto Race Garmin Forerunner 955 Coros Pace 3 Garmin Forerunner 55
Features (20%)
7.0
7.5
8.0
6.0
5.0
Battery Life (20%)
7.0
5.9
5.4
5.1
4.3
Ease of Use (20%)
8.0
8.0
8.0
8.0
8.0
Accuracy (20%)
8.0
8.0
8.0
8.0
8.0
Design (20%)
7.0
9.0
8.0
7.0
6.0
Specs Coros Apex Pro 2 Suunto Race Garmin Forerunner 955 Coros Pace 3 Garmin Forerunner 55
Watch Face Material Sapphire glass Sapphire crystal Corning Gorilla Glass DX Mineral Glass Chemically strengthened glass
Bezel Titanium alloy Stainless steel Fiber reinforced polymer Glass fiber reinforced polyamide Stainless steel
Case Titanium Glass fiber reinforced polyamide Fiber-reinforced polymer Glass fiber reinforced polyamide Glass fiber reinforced polyamide
Strap Material Silicon or nylon Silicone Silicone Silicone Silicone
Tools Required to Change Band? No No Yes No No
Model Tested Pro Stainless Steel Standard N/A N/A
Size Tested 47 mm One size only One Size only One size only One size only
Measured Main Body Size (diameter) 46.5 mm 49 mm 46.5 mm 41.9 mm 42 mm
Measured Thickness 14 mm 13.3 mm 14.4 mm 11.8 mm 12.5 mm
Measured Screen Width 33 mm 36 mm 33 mm 31 mm 26.5 mm
Measured Weight 1.9 oz 2.93 oz 1.7 oz 1.5 oz 1.31 oz
Measured Charging Time 93 min 84 min 120 min 113 min 111 min
Battery Type Rechargable lithium ion Rechargable lithium ion Rechargable lithium ion Rechargable lithium ion Rechargable lithium ion
Measured Battery Life With GPS 73 hours 50 hours 41 hours 34 hours 19 hours
Manufacturer-Reported Battery Life Smartwatch mode: Up to 30 days
GPS-only mode without music: Up to 75 hours
All-Systems GNSS mode plus Multi-Band with music: Up to 14 hours
All Systems GNSS mode plus Multi-Band without music: Up to 45 hours
Dual Frequency: Up to 36 hours
Dual Frequency with Music: Up to 11 hours
In time mode: 26 days
With 24/7 tracking and mobile notifications: 12 days
Training mode with GPS: 40h / 50h / 70h / 120h
Smartwatch mode: Up to 15 days
GPS-only mode without music: Up to 42 hours
All-Systems GNSS mode plus Multi-Band with music: Up to 8.5 hours
All Systems GNSS mode plus Multi-Band without music: Up to 20 hours
Ultratrac mode: Up to 80 hours
Smartwatch mode: 24 days; GPS: 38 hours Smartwatch mode: 2 weeks;
GPS: 20 hours
Navigation Built In? Yes Yes Yes Yes - breadcrumb No
Satellite Networks Used GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, Beidou, QZSS GPS, GLONASS, GALILEO, QZSS, BEIDOU GPS, GLONASS, GALILEO Dual Frequency
(GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, Beidou, QZSS)
GPS, GLONASS, GALILEO
Maps? Yes Yes - detailed Yes - detailed Yes - breadcrumb No
Back to Start Navigation? Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Water Resistance (max depth) 50m 100m 50m 50m 50m
Music Control? Yes Yes Yes Yes - downloads only Yes
Music Storage? Yes No Yes - 2000 songs Yes - 4gb No
Daily Fitness Tracking? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Touchless Payment? No No Yes No No
Sleep Tracking? Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Blood Oxygen? Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Compass? Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Barometric Altimeter? Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Temperature Sensor? Yes No No Yes No
Main Software App Coros App Suunto Garmin Connect, widgets for other features Coros App Garmin Connect, widgets for other features
Can Software Crossover to Different Software Ecosystems? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Warranty Info 2 year 2 year 1 year 2 year 1 year

Our Analysis and Test Results

Today's GPS watch market revolves around the almost standard 47mm case size. Besides the much larger Coros Vertix 2, the new Apex Pro 2 is the flagship model of the Coros lineup. The Vertix 2, being over a year old, leaves space for the Apex Pro 2 to bring new features and performance. The Apex Pro 2 was released along with the smaller, cheaper Apex 2, which shares many similarities in features and design but comes in a smaller 42mm case. These watches mimic the previous models' footprint and have many design similarities.

The Apex Pro 2 continues to lead the industry in battery life for its size (75 hours in GPS mode). Equipped with the same UI as all Coros watches, this watch is easy to use and is paired with an awesome companion application that allows for watch customization and visualization of health data. Sensor upgrades such as heart rate, HRV, and electrocardiogram, and new features like music storage (Mp3) and multi-pitch climb modes make this the most advanced Coros watch to date.

Performance Comparison


coros apex pro 2 - steep skiing is one of the best ways to test a gps watch - technical...
Steep skiing is one of the best ways to test a GPS watch - technical terrain and clothing interference with the antenna let us know how reliable a watch is.
Credit: Matthew Richardson

Features


The Apex Pro 2 has all of the expected features you'd want on a modern GPS device. Our team insists on a few important features such as sleep tracking, activity tracking, some form of navigation, ABC (Altimeter, Barometer, and Compass), and health stats via a heart rate monitor. The increasingly popular HRV (Heart Rate Variability) metric is newly included in this model, which can help visualize overtraining and overall health. Coros is also known for implementing substantial software updates, which we anticipate will bring new features in the future.

The Apex Pro 2 lacks features found elsewhere at this price point. Music storage is still limited to Mp3, which is confusing given today's ecosystem of streaming services. Map navigation is still limited to GPX route following and does not offer turn-by-turn directions. Health metrics are still very data-oriented and do not provide detailed insights into a user's health. ANT+ has been removed, and Bluetooth is now the only method of connecting external sensors. Also missing are features we miss, like Garmin Pay, music remote control, and inReach pairing. Coros makes up for lacking these features largely with its industry-leading battery life.

coros apex pro 2 - the coros apex pro 2 features a large touchscreen that is visible...
The Coros Apex Pro 2 features a large touchscreen that is visible even in harsh light. You can customize the watch fully though the mobile companion app which we think is the best.
Credit: Matthew Richardson

Battery Life


With 75 claimed hours of full GPS, this is the longest battery life out of any ~47mm watch. The closest competitor is the Garmin Fenix 7 with 57 hours, but it costs more and provides less juice. Coros continues its battery life domination, and, in our opinion, this is one of the main selling points of this watch. You can receive top-tier battery life and save hundreds over other premium models.

During our testing, we went from a dead battery to 100% in 93 mins (12W USB-A), and full GPS lasted for 73 hours of continuous usage. This is roughly 88% longer than the previous Apex Pro. We would prefer the included cord was USB-C, which is more convenient and potentially allows for faster charging. Regardless, this battery life was more than sufficient for all of our daily needs and even supported us on extended multi-day outings. If you plan on using dual-frequency or music while tracking, expect the battery life to drop.

coros apex pro 2 - with roughly 75 hours of gps tracking, this watch leads the...
With roughly 75 hours of GPS tracking, this watch leads the competition in the 47mm case size. If your priority is battery life without jumping up to the 51mm case size this is the model for you.
Credit: Matthew Richardson

Ease of Use


A required mobile companion app allows for easy changes to settings and data fields. This app is one of the best we've tested, and it does a good job of balancing data and space, making the UI feel clean and uncluttered. The setup is easy, and linking to third-party apps like Strava is straightforward. We experienced no lag in uploads, and the Bluetooth connection was always reliable and fast.

Interacting with the Apex Pro 2 is smooth and precise, but we would still prefer dedicated buttons over the larger scroll wheel. We found the dedicated back/backlight buttons useful and are glad they were kept around for this iteration. The touch screen is still limited to certain data screens but is not enabled throughout the entire device. It's probably most useful moving the navigation screen, but we almost always rather pull out our phone. The screen lock is still one extra step we could live without. Really our biggest complaint is the continued implementation of the scroll wheel; it has never felt like a natural way to interact with the watch. Still, if you've used any tech products in the past five years, the Apex Pro 2 will feel familiar.

coros apex pro 2 - the included loop band prevents easy attachment to other gear. we...
The included loop band prevents easy attachment to other gear. We prefer the classic watch clasp design that is easy to take on and off and get the tension right every time.
Credit: Matthew Richardson

Accuracy


This model received an updated heart rate monitor, which we found closely matched the data we received from our leading accuracy models. We also had good GPX track results in technical terrain thanks to a new dual-frequency satellite chip. A multi-pitch climbing mode allows for better tracking in steep sheltered areas, which was nice when ice climbing in Colorado. This new chip also helps prevent spikes and errors and does not cause as frequent inaccuracies in elevation data.

The previous version of this model scored highly for accuracy, and the new model closely matches that data, so while these new technology claims are useful, we didn't notice a huge difference in performance. This watch fit great on our wrist, which is essential for getting accurate heart rate data. We also found that the antennas were strong enough to achieve accurate results even when wearing a shell while skiing or ice climbing.

coros apex pro 2 - the updated heart rate sensor claims an improvement of 50% but it...
The updated heart rate sensor claims an improvement of 50% but it closely matched the previous model which also scored highly. Regardless, the Coros metrics have improved and closely match our leading Garmin/Apple models.
Credit: Matthew Richardson

Design


While the form factor hasn't changed with this newest iteration, Coros has switched up the design a bit, offering new colorways and a standard loop wristband. The durability of the materials and the tactile feel of the buttons and haptics are quality. There is a new watch face specific to this model, and it does a good job of sharing data without leaving the timing field cluttered. We prefer the slightly more angular design of other watches, but we can see the appeal of the rounded design found here.

Unlike the Vertix 2, which ships with a loop and normal watchband, the Apex Pro 2 only ships with a loop band — a normal watchband is available as an accessory. We prefer a watch strap because it is easier to attach to other gear or a bag. The ability to micro-adjust your watch is nice, but we actually prefer the ability to index the tightness based on the hole count. Largely this will come down to your preference, and overall this model is a sleek-looking design and competes with the competition on durability and premium materials.

coros apex pro 2 - seen here is the size difference between the coros apex 2 (42mm) and...
Seen here is the size difference between the Coros Apex 2 (42mm) and the Coros Apex Pro 2 (47mm).
Credit: Matthew Richardson

Should You Buy the Coros Apex Pro 2?


If your primary concern is battery life, this is the best on the market for the price point. However, if you don't mind sacrificing some hours, there are other watches with more features, some which are very useful. Without a doubt, this is the best watch Coros has released, but we wish it also included some additional features found elsewhere.

coros apex pro 2 - the coros apex pro 2 excels with its battery life, we just wish...
The Coros Apex Pro 2 excels with its battery life, we just wish there were a few more features that competed with the Apple and Garmin offerings. Still, if your top priority is battery life, this is a great choice.
Credit: Matthew Richardson

What Other GPS Watches Should You Consider?


If battery life is less important to you, but you still want a solid adventure watch, we'd recommend the Garmin Forerunner 955. It has multiple software features that we appreciate, like Spotify Music, Garmin Pay, ANT+, and turn-by-turn navigation. If you're on a budget but still want a great watch, we'd recommend the Coros Pace 3.

coros apex pro 2 - we hope our review of the coros apex pro 2 helped narrow down your...
We hope our review of the Coros Apex Pro 2 helped narrow down your decision.
Credit: Matthew Richardson

Matthew Richardson