Forerunner 645 Music vs Vivoactive 3 – Better Choice?

Forerunner 645 Music vs Vivoactive 3

Garmin’s two smart watch models – Forerunner and Vivoactive have been the top picks among fitness freaks for quite a long time now. Read further to know who wins between Forerunner 645 Music vs Vivoactive 3

The American multinational brand engages in manufacturing different sport and training devices.

Garmin running watches – Forerunner 645 and Vivoactive 3 are top of their game and come with high-tech features according to various individual needs.

Overview (Forerunner 645 Music vs Vivoactive 3)

Garmin Forerunner 645 Music

Garmin Forerunner 645 Music, GPS Running Watch With Pay Contactless Payments, Wrist-Based Heart Rate And Music, Black
  • Easily download up to 500 songs to your watch, and connect with Bluetooth headphones (sold separately) for phone free listening
  • Syncs music from select streaming services for offline listening (May require premium subscription with a third party music provider)
  • Garmin Pay contactless payment solution lets you make convenient payments with your watch (available for supported cards from participating banks), so you can leave your cash and cards at home
  • Provides advanced running dynamics (when used with Running Dynamics Pod or HRM Run or HRM Tri monitor, sold separately), including ground contact time balance, stride length, vertical ratio and more
  • Uses estimated wrist based heart rate data to offer performance monitoring features, including evaluating your current training status.Battery life: Up to 7 days in smartwatch mode; 5 hours in GPS...

Last update on 2024-05-15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Forerunner 645 Music

Forerunner 645 Music is a running smartwatch perfect for athletes. It has a lightweight design with an innovative music storage feature. It also provides better offline playlist integration.

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This smartwatch consists of better running stats with advanced features like tracking runs, cross train with a variety of built-in workouts.

It could track any activity from running, cycling, swimming to other outdoor activities like skiing and snowboarding.

The in-built GPS and GLONASS features start tracking your mileage, covering both splits and pace, also calculating time spent in the heart rate zones, with cadence and elevation.

It has Garmin Pay application to pay at different stores in case you forgot to bring your wallet or mobile phone, etc.

Garmin’s own Garmin Connect play store provides numerous applications (1600) to connect to the smartwatch and it also has widgets, clock faces. These apps range from fitness to music.

Vivoactive 3

Garmin 010-01769-01 Vivoactive 3, GPS Smartwatch with Contactless Payments and Built-In Sports Apps, Black with Silver Hardware
  • Garmin Pay contactless payment solution lets you pay for purchases with your watch (available for supported cards from participating banks)
  • Personalize your watch with thousands of free watch faces, apps and widgets from our Connect IQ store
  • More than 15 preloaded GPS and indoor sports apps, including yoga, running, swimming and more
  • Monitor your fitness level with VO2 max and fitness made estimates, plus keep an eye on how you handle stress
  • Get connected features such as smart notifications, automatic uploads to Garmin Connect, Live Track and more when paired with a compatible smartphone

Last update on 2024-05-16 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Vivoactive 3

It is one of the best fitness-focused watches available in the market. It consists of apps, smartphone notifications, and Garmin Pay for paying anywhere anytime with ease.

It is an ideal choice for professional athletes, runners, swimmers, and golfers. Vivoactive 3 includes a heart-rate sensor which measures the heart beats with maximum precision.

The GPS signals are also very strong and track your steps accurately. For better services, sync your watch with your mobile phone using Garmin Connect.

It monitors VO2 maximum estimate and stress levels throughout the day. You can also access thousands of apps on your watch using Garmin Connect but most of them are limited to fitness.

Differences (Forerunner 645 Music vs Vivoactive 3)


Music is undoubtedly the biggest and latest innovation in Garmin watches. This is unique to Forerunner 645 Music model.

Unlike this one, the simple version does not have this service. Forerunner 645 Music can store up to 500 songs making it possible for you to leave your phone at home.

It has collaborated with iHeartRadio to sync playlist you had already downloaded offline using the Garmin Connect IQ application.

In the watch, open Garmin Connect, search for music apps or iHeartRadio app, and install it on your phone.

You can also load up your smartwatch with MP3 and AAC files. Just install Garmin Express client app on your desktop and choose the songs to transfer.

You can also pair it with Bluetooth headphones to listen to the songs during a run.

Unfortunately, this feature is not available in Vivoactive 3.

Advanced Running Dynamics

Avid runners or athletes look for new, advanced running dynamics to monitor their workout sessions on different levels.

Forerunner 645 Music is compatible with HRM and Running Dynamics Pod to give you advanced running stats. It includes ground contact time, vertical oscillations, stride length, etc.

These metrics are very useful for professional athletes, but might not be important for others.Some fin cadence as an important feature than the stride length. Therefore,everyone depends on the customer. 

Vivoactive 3 does not have such advanced running dynamics.


The battery life in Forerunner 645 Music is pretty good. It can be used for a week straight after one time charge in smartwatch mode and for 5 hours in GPS mode with music.

If you use it to track multiple workouts with the GPS on and listen to music simultaneously, it can stay up for 4 hours which is great.

The battery backup of Vivoactive does not vary a lot. It can go about 3 days with GPS and heart rate sensor activated. It implies that you can easily wear the watch overnight.


Vivoactive 3 has a combination of touch-screen controls and a button on the side. To view a smartphone notification, you need to tap the watch face.

But to pause a workout session, press the side button. It has a round watch face giving it an analog watch look.

There are new watch faces available in the Garmin Connect app. You need to download them. If you are not using the watch, it dims the display to conserve battery.

Forerunner 645 music is sporty and functional with 5 buttons on the sides. All the buttons have labels to make it easier for users to know their respective functions. It is made up of stainless steel bezel. There are button display lights on the sides.


Garmin Forerunner 645 is much more expensive than Vivoactive 3 due to the new music feature and better battery backup. Both the products are available on Amazon (Click here to find out the price for Garmin Forerunner 645 & Vivoactive 3 ).

Golf Support

Golf support feature is available in Vivoactive 3. This is another difference between the two watches. If you are an avid golfer, then Forerunner 645 is not the ideal choice for you as it cannot measure your activity and thus the stats related to it.

Reviews (Forerunner 645 Music vs Vivoactive 3)

Both the Garmin watches do a great job at fulfilling all the needs of runners, swimmers, athletes, etc.

There are slight differences between them which can be neglected if you are not looking for that particular feature.

Here is my personal review on both the watches. With this, you can hopefully choose the better smartwatch for you.

Forerunner 645 Music

Forerunner 645 Music

Forerunner models do not have a music system but the 645 version is an exception.

Garmin inserted the music option in this app making it one of its kind. People who are using Forerunner and are satisfied with it can also upgrade to 645 Music and enjoy listening to songs while running or doing other physical activities.

It has more buttons than Vivoactive 3 which makes it easier to use it while running. It has advanced running dynamics. Lastly, it is costlier than Vivoactive 3.

Vivoactive 3

Vivoactive 3

Vivoactive 3 has all the great features necessary for sport activities and various workout metrics.

Professional athletes can make the most of this smartwatch and that too at a much lower price. Moreover, the battery backup is pretty decent which makes it a good choice among many users.

The best thing about Vivoactive 3 which Forerunner 645 lacks is Golf support. If you love playing golf and want your smartwatch to evaluate your performance providing training stats as well, then you should definitely go for this model. 

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