Garmin introduces tactical GPS navigator watch
By C.C. Weiss
October 24, 2013
The GPS gurus over at Garmin must be racking up serious overtime. Hot on the heels of its first actioncam and the D2 pilot watch, the Kansas company has an all-new tactical GPS watch. The Tactix combines traditional ABC hardware with functions inspired by law enforcement operations. It's the choice for everyone from special ops to weekend recreational warriors.
Built to survive the grittiest tactical and recreational missions, the Tactix packs its altimeter, barometer, 3-axis compass (ABC) and GPS chip into a beefy housing with a forged stainless steel rear case. With a quick flick of the wrist, the scratch-resistant, curved mineral glass face provides a clear look at the LCD display, shedding hot spots caused by the sun. A green LED back light is there for when things go dark.
Like the Fenix, the Tactix is a fully-featured GPS navigator. It lets users plan routes, view their locations in latitude/longitude and MGRS (military grid reference system), record up to 1,000 waypoints, track their trips and "TracBack" to their starting point. It comes with a worldwide base map.
The Tactix also benefits from the latest in wireless functionality, with both ANT+ and Bluetooth technology. It can share routes, tracks and other info with compatible Garmin devices and smartphones running Garmin's Basecamp app. It also pairs wirelessly with cadence sensors, heart rate monitors and other performance trackers and can even act as a wireless remote control for the new VIRB actioncams.
At this point, the Tactix sounds a lot like a Fenix 2, but it does pack some toys for field operatives, too. For those leaving the comfort of land for sea and air missions, it has preloaded US tide charts and Jumpmaster software, which "follows military guidelines for calculating a skydiver's high altitude release point (HARP), auto-detecting when he has jumped to begin navigating toward the desired impact point (DIP) using the barometer and electronic compass." The green backlight, meanwhile, "won’t flare out with night vision devices or compromise the user’s position."
Getting back to basics, the Tactix includes a timer, alarms, vibration alerts, stopwatch, and world clock that can show multiple time zones, military time, and zulu time at once. It is waterproof to 164 feet (50 m). The lithium-ion battery lasts between 16 hours (full GPS mode) and five weeks (basic watch mode) before requiring a recharge.
The Tactix is available on Garmin's website now for US$449.99
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