Garmin Approach S42 Watch Review

$299.99

Last updated on February 21, 2024 3:25 am

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The Garmin Approach S42 is a GPS golf smartwatch that offers a range of features and a user-friendly interface. It has a long battery life of up to 15 hours in GPS mode, allowing for extended use during rounds. The watch comes preloaded with over 42,000 CourseView maps, providing comprehensive coverage for golfers. Say goodbye to guesswork on the course, as the advanced golf course mapping provides precise yardages and hazards, empowering you to make informed decisions and take the perfect shot. And with real-time scoring and stat tracking, you can effortlessly monitor your performance and gain a competitive edge.

Paul Liberatore Paul Liberatore
February 20, 2024
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You will get: More than 42,000 courses mean you’ll have accurate yardage and course info no matter where you play. Sports apps track your physical activity, recovery, and overall health so you can always be prepared to perform at your best. Screen display is one of the clearest of any watch on the market.

Updated February 2024 to update current pricing information.

For as long as I can remember, the Garmin Approach family of GPS watches have been the standard by which all other golf GPS watches are measured.  With each new iteration that gets released, the tech, design, ease of use, and functions all seem to improve. 

That’s certainly been the case with the Garmin Approach S42 GPS Watch.  Its features all build on the success of previous generations. 

Let’s have a closer look.

Key Features

  • More than 42,000 courses are preloaded, so you don’t have to worry about downloading a new one when you play some place for the first time.
  • Green View and Green Contour Data give you plenty of information about each green complex and simplify the reading of putts.
  • Battery can last up to 10 days in smartwatch mode and 15 hours in GPS mode.
Where to Buy
Last Amazon price update was: February 21, 2024 4:49 pm
× Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon.com (Amazon.in, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, etc) at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.

Who Should Buy the Garmin Approach S42 Watch?

If you’re a golfer that’s tech savvy and are sick of pacing all over the place and trying to find yardages only to guess and be wrong, the Garmin Approach S42 Watch is for you.

This watch is jam packed full of features that make golf easier, faster, and more enjoyable, all while helping you improve and play your best.

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Design and Technology

As is the case with pretty much all Garmin GPS watches, the Approach S42 has tons of design and tech features. 

The first feature of note are the more than 42,000 courses that this watch comes preloaded with.  Once you’ve taken care of the initial setup, all you have to do is turn it on and it will automatically recognize the course you’re at.  No more having to download courses from the computer at home before you go play.

The battery on the Approach S42 is amazing.  It lasts up to 15 hours in GPS mode and a whopping 10 days in smartphone mode!

The color touchscreen is vibrant and light adaptive.  Unless you’re playing in the middle of the night, you’ll have no problem reading the graphics. 

The AutoShot feature tracks the distance of each of your shots and really comes in handy when you’re trying to pick a club.  If you want to get especially advanced, pair the Approach S42 with the Garmin Golf app for even more advanced stats and metrics. 

You won’t find yourself wondering about yardages either.  On each hole, you’ll get numbers to the front, middle, and back of every green, and other important distances like bunkers, doglegs, and other hazards. 

This watch is useful off the golf course too.  If you’re a fitness junkie, you can utilize all the sports apps that do things like track heart rate, calories burned, track sleep, and so much more. 

Compatible with your smartphone, there isn’t much the Garmin Approach S42 can’t do.

Specs

The most impressive physical feature of this watch is the screen.  It’s made out of chemically strengthened glass. 

The screen itself is 1.20 inches wide, and the watch only weighs 1.5 ounces. 

The display resolution is 240 pixels by 240 pixels.  Crystal clear. 

And with 64 MB of memory, you’ll be able to store plenty of data.

9.6Expert Score
Garmin Approach S42 Watch Review
Garmin Approach S42 Watch

The Garmin Approach S42 is a GPS golf smartwatch that offers a range of features and a user-friendly interface. It has a long battery life of up to 15 hours in GPS mode, allowing for extended use during rounds. The watch comes preloaded with over 42,000 CourseView maps, providing comprehensive coverage for golfers. Say goodbye to guesswork on the course, as the advanced golf course mapping provides precise yardages and hazards, empowering you to make informed decisions and take the perfect shot. And with real-time scoring and stat tracking, you can effortlessly monitor your performance and gain a competitive edge.

Innovation
10
Performance
9.2
Design/Sound/Feel
9.3
Value
9.7
PROS
  • More than 42,000 courses mean you’ll have accurate yardage and course info no matter where you play.
  • Sports apps track your physical activity, recovery, and overall health so you can always be prepared to perform at your best.
  • Screen display is one of the clearest of any watch on the market.
CONS
  • There are less expensive watches with similar functions available.
  • Order and shipping times can vary based on supply and demand.
  • Initial setup can be difficult if you’re not tech savvy.
image 13

Our Experience

If you guys have read many of our product reviews here at Golfer’s Authority, you know I’m all about tech that makes golf more fun, faster, and helps you get better all at once.

That’s precisely what the Garmin Approach S42 does.  Its tech, features, functions, ease of use, and deadly accuracy make for an unbeatable combination both on and off the course. 

Having tried just about every sports watch under the sun, I’m happy to endorse this one as one of my favorites. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the Garmin Approach S42 Compatible With Other Garmin Golf Devices or Sensors?

Yes, the Garmin Approach S42 is compatible with other Garmin golf devices and sensors, allowing seamless data integration. This enhances your golfing experience by providing comprehensive, accurate information for improved performance and analysis.

Can the Garmin Approach S42 Be Used for Activities Other Than Golf, Such as Running or Cycling?

Yes, the Garmin Approach S42 can be used for activities other than golf, such as running and cycling. It offers fitness tracking and multi-sport capabilities, making it a versatile option for various athletic endeavors.

Does the Garmin Approach S42 Have a Feature for Tracking Club Distances or Recommending Clubs Based on Previous Shots?

Yes, the Garmin Approach S42 has a feature for tracking club distances and recommending clubs based on previous shots. It offers accurate tracking and provides shot recommendations to assist with club selection.

How Does the Garmin Approach S42 Handle Software Updates and Improvements?

I feel like the Garmin Approach S42 handles software updates and improvements like a pro. The user interface enhancements and performance tuning keep my watch running smoothly, ensuring I always have the latest features and fixes.

What Accessories Are Available for the Garmin Approach S42, Such as Additional Bands or Protective Cases?

I found a variety of interchangeable accessories for the Garmin Approach S42, including additional bands and protective cases. These options provide customization for personal style and protection, enhancing the overall experience of using the smartwatch on the golf course.

Conclusion

Ever since I was a kid, my father told me that it’s impossible to buy a golf game, even though people have been trying for centuries. 

And there’s certainly a significant element of truth in that statement.  At the end of the day, it’s up to you to put in the work you need to get better.

But I will say, investing in the right technology that makes the game more fun, helps you get better quicker, and play faster in general is an investment I’m behind 100%. 

And for that reason alone, I fully endorse the Garmin Approach S42 GPS Watch. 

So, if you like tech, want to get better, and have more fun with golf, you could make a lot worse purchases than this watch from Garmin – the most trusted name in GPS golf watches.

$299.99
February 21, 2024 4:49 pm
× Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon.com (Amazon.in, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, etc) at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
12 new from $299.99
3 used from $249.99

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Paul Liberatore
Paul Liberatore

As the Founder of Golfers Authority Paul Liberatore Esq. has spent the last 7+ years writing about the best golf equipment or instruction from the top golf instructors in the world. He has been a contributing writer for Sports Illustrated Golf and GolfWRX. After graduating with honors from Purdue University, he realized that he had a passion for the golf business and the law. When he's not practicing law, or creating golf content on YouTube, he can be found on his syndicated Behind the Golf Brand podcast both on Apple and Spotify talking with the most prolific leaders in the golf industry. 

Garmin Approach S42 Watch Review
Garmin Approach S42 Watch Review

$299.99

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