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  • Fenix 3 GPS accurracy

    I know this is a bit early to ask, but there are some that has got their F3 alrady so it's worth a shot.

    The other day I was just walking and talking side by side with a friend and he uses an Suunto Ambit 3.
    I was untill today using a Fenix 2 and was using it on that trip.

    I have been a little sceptical to the GPS accurracy on the F2 lately, so when I got home I decided to compare out data and this is how it looks:

    AmbitvsFenix.jpg

    The Ambit 3 really crushes the Fenix 2 for GPS accurracy. It looks like I was mighty drunk and hardly were able to hit the path at all. The Ambit 3 is fairly spot on the track here if I zoom. The Fenix 2 is almost never. It really scares me for the Garmin units and made it easy to sell my Fenix 2. I think the Fenix 3 is the best looking wrist-worn multisport watch so I already have one on preorder. The only one I would be fine with for everyday use.
    BTW: I wore the watch outside my jacket so the GPS reception should be optimal for a wrist worn.

    My question is for you who have received the F3 and used to own an F2: Do you actually experience any improvement from the F2?

    I have seen in one thread here a little comparison, but I was wondering now that you have used it for a few days how you experience it.
    Current: fenix Chronos steel
    Ex. Fenix 3 HR Titanium
    Ex. Fenix 3 HR Sapphire
    Ex. Fenix 3
    Ex. Fenix 2

  • #2
    Oh god ! Don't say that ... I'm only getting a f3 coz the gps on my iPhone is crap & the 6 is far too big to be carring on a run
    I think if I could fit it in a rear pocket 50 yds down the rd my shorts would be round my ankles with the shear weight

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    • #3
      The F3 is supposed to be better given it's based off the forerunner code set.
      That said my F1 is a lot better than that track...

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      • #4
        All Forerunners and Fenixes, including Fenix3 has Mediatek GPS chipset which will never has as good performance as Ambit3´s SiRF Star V. Moreover, Ambit has external antenna in lower part of its body. Both, new Suuntos and new Garmins support Glonass. On the other way, Garmins have better structured workout trainings then Suunto.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by aniseedvan01 View Post
          The F3 is supposed to be better given it's based off the forerunner code set.
          That said my F1 is a lot better than that track...
          Well I don't think the code set will do much for reception, but on the upside the Gps antenna and chipset on the Fenix3 is entirely different from the Fenix2 (but it is similar to the one used on the 920xt)

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          • #6
            Originally posted by KOULIK View Post
            All Forerunners and Fenixes, including Fenix3 has Mediatek GPS chipset which will never has as good performance as Ambit3´s SiRF Star V. Moreover, Ambit has external antenna in lower part of its body. Both, new Suuntos and new Garmins support Glonass. On the other way, Garmins have better structured workout trainings then Suunto.
            I think saying it will never be as good is misleading - i have had excellent tracks with my 920, far better than my F2 has done (my F2 thought i was drunk and running in the middle of a parking lot).
            Additionally, not sure where the 920 antenna is, but the Fenix 3 has a top facing antenna - in fact, that pretty metal ring IS the antenna.

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            • #7
              Which Mediatek chipset are you referring to?

              Also keep in mind that the Antenna and LNA can play a huge part in accuracy.

              Originally posted by KOULIK View Post
              All Forerunners and Fenixes, including Fenix3 has Mediatek GPS chipset which will never has as good performance as Ambit3´s SiRF Star V. Moreover, Ambit has external antenna in lower part of its body. Both, new Suuntos and new Garmins support Glonass. On the other way, Garmins have better structured workout trainings then Suunto.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by KOULIK View Post
                All Forerunners and Fenixes, including Fenix3 has Mediatek GPS chipset which will never has as good performance as Ambit3´s SiRF Star V. Moreover, Ambit has external antenna in lower part of its body. Both, new Suuntos and new Garmins support Glonass. On the other way, Garmins have better structured workout trainings then Suunto.
                From what I understand Fenix 3 and 920 have different Mediatek chipsets then Fenix 2. Beside that as others pointed out the Fenix 3 has a different antenna design and 920xt users say that GPS accuracy is very good.. so fingers crossed I hope it is also true for Fenix 3.

                I have to confirm that the tracks from Ambit 3 are way more accurate then Fenix 2 (which in my opinion was awful GPS wise.. comparing to Ambit3 my tracks looked just like AndySix showed).
                Still you have to remember that Ambit 3 doesn't give us a 'raw' recorded 1s track, it is always 'smoothed' by the software and 'Fusespeed'. The effect is very good but you cannot compare the chipset quality basing just on that. Beside that I had other GPS units with Sirfstar chipsets and they performed very poorly, so design of antenna and software are very important (as others pointed out earlier).
                Last edited by ARTIVIS; 02-10-2015, 11:58 PM.
                I run for fun with Fenix 5+ Titanium DLC
                Hard reset, firmware reinstall, data location and backup

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by KAFOLSKE View Post
                  Which Mediatek chipset are you referring to?

                  Also keep in mind that the Antenna and LNA can play a huge part in accuracy.
                  Mediatek MT3333 used in these new Garmin devices. Fenix1 and 2 and FR620/220 have chip MT3339 without Glonass support. I understand that there were lot of negative reviews on Fenixes and Forerunners , so Garmin had to come with something promising better results. And they did it - here is new EXO antenna. Great marketing name, but I'm still conservative about that. It seems that GPS performance is finally better, but there are a lot of users with bad experience with their 920XT in forests. So I'd like believe but I want to wait for summer results.

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                  • #10
                    Here's some info on the Mediatek MT3333 chipset. Note accuracy is stated to be 3m!

                    http://www.nex-robotics.com/products...33-module.html
                    -----------------
                    Teriemer


                    Biking: Edge 1030 | Vector 3 dual | Assioma Duo | Stages (G3)
                    Running: Polar V800 | Stryd
                    Daily life: F5S plus

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                    • #11
                      To be fair, there are a ton of factors that affect the end result as far as how accurate the GPS is. Where the device is position, how much sweat is on it, the design of the antenna, how much power the device is currently supplying to the GPS chip all play a factor in how well it will work.

                      So just because it has the same chip in there as another device, doesn't mean it will work as well, or worse, than that device.

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                      • #12
                        Yes, I also think so. We have to look at the whole package of gps chip, antenna, fw etc.
                        In use: fenix 5x, oregon 550t

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                        • #13
                          MediaTek GPS chipsets are widely used in airplane models and quadrocopters with a great results and low power consumption. As you said, the same important is antenna size and position etc. But from my experience, Garmin's MediaTek implementations have no good results in forests and under heavy foliage. There are typical jumps in track and sometimes the signal is lost. And even if Fenix and Fenix2 were targeted to outdoor, they were very bad in this environment. It's the reason I'm little sceptic and conservative about Fenix3. My 920XT experience is very similar to FR620 - great in "open sky", not so good during trails. So, we will see.. somebody has to try it

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by KOULIK View Post
                            But from my experience, Garmin's MediaTek implementations have no good results in forests and under heavy foliage. There are typical jumps in track and sometimes the signal is lost.
                            Strange to read. With my experience, with the FR405, FR910XT, FR620, etc... never had problems in forest, lot of tress, rain, etc...

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                            • #15
                              Weird. I had no problems with FR410 and 610 at all. But 620 and Fenix were significantly worse on my trail runs.

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