Garmin Forerunner 301

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Garmin Forerunner 301

Our Review

Garmin's easy-to-use, reliable and accurate Forerunner GPS speed-and-distance monitor has proved to be hugely popular. With the addition of a heart-rate monitor it could now stake a claim to being the only running gadget you'll ever need. The Forerunner 301 does just about everything you'll ever need a watch to ...  Continue reading

Reader Reviews

161 user reviews of Garmin Forerunner 301 See all

Overall reader score
An excellent product that has really helped me improve. Continue reading...
I got this after reading the reviews of the 305 and 405. The 405 seemd unreliable, the 305 looked too bulky. Halfords sell the 305, and I tried it on, and it was huge!!

The 301 does everything I want it to, Continue reading...
Virtual Partner makes it all worthwhile, when you have to run alone. I think it's a great running aid and worth the money I paid. Continue reading...
Great tool - I would recommend this to anyone doing long distances, either running or on the bike.
Price has now come down so even better. I have used mine for over a year. Continue reading...
Its a great GPS for the money I am a Adventure Race planner and Director which put on You Adventure race in Scotland and it helps me design and plan race routes just wish I could afford more of Garmin mapping a Continue reading...


I've read a few references to "the new Garmin Forerunner 301, out in January, which includes heart rate monitor".

I've tried searching on teh web but can find little apart from other runners on other forums repeating the same thing.

Just a simple question. Is this real information, or are we all just repeating each other's rumours?

Posted: 02/12/2004 at 13:14

Theres something on the Sportsim forum about speaking to Garmin to get the 301 to work with Sportsim.

Theres also a couple of sites in Belgium claiming to sell one for ~400Euros.

Posted: 02/12/2004 at 13:28

just phoned garmin asking about a release date

"Unfortunately we have no information about products that are not currently available on our website"

However, there is a pic here which appears to be a genuine pic on a genuine tech show website

Posted: 02/12/2004 at 16:30

Thanks YRR. Unless some mischief-maker has been busy with PhotoShop that certainly looks like a new Forerunner and a chest strap. A bit disappointing that it is a chest strap. I was hoping that they might have created a wrist sensor as part of the wrist unit.

If it really is planned for January I'm surprised they've not advertised. There must be loads of people planning to get 201s for Xmas who'd rather wait for the 301. Ah, maybe that's the reason for keeping quiet! Clear out the 201 stocks.

Posted: 02/12/2004 at 17:08

nail and head spring to mind ;-)

I'll email our accessories buyer and Garmin rep if I get a chance, see if there is anything which they know (and that I'm allowed to tell you!!!)

Posted: 02/12/2004 at 17:25

road runner
how on earth did you manage to come across that pic?
Ive used your link and found it, but can't find it from the home page on that site

Posted: 02/12/2004 at 18:24

that jpg links from the CES Innovations 2005 Awards Honorees page:

Scroll down to Garmin International on that page and you'll see the description "The Forerunner 301 is the most integrated personal training system on the market and simplifies fitness technology by providing motivational features that make athletic activities both fun and productive." along with a "view product image" link to the jpg mentioned.

Fog Man

Posted: 05/12/2004 at 03:23

OK thanks, the source sounds pretty impeccable, but what about the January 2005 launch, which I've seen repeated a few times?

Posted: 05/12/2004 at 13:11

From what I have seen on the garminf mailing list on Yahoo Groups, Garmin has a press conference for the 5th(?) of January 2005 - that seems a likely time to announce a new item like the 301.

Posted: 07/12/2004 at 13:43

Hi there, I've read all the posts regarding the forerunner 201 and had just gotten together the money to buy it and then read this on the 301. I desperately want a forerunner but wonder if you think I should now just wait for the 301 with the added heart rate monitor. Does anyone know if the rest of the functions (i.e. virtual partner) from the 201 are available on the 301? And will it be a lot higher in price than the 201? I presume it will have to be because of the added HRM but figure maybe it wont be as they may be omitting stuff from the 201 design. Does anyone know anything more about it yet? Sorry for all the questions, it's just I don't want to feel I've wasted my money


Posted: 15/12/2004 at 13:49

I see a new link on the 301.

Posted: 15/12/2004 at 14:01

Personally, I would wait until the announcement for the 301 - apparently it is supposed to be in early January (the 5th I think) and see what comes out of that - price, availabilty date, ... and make your choice from there!

Posted: 15/12/2004 at 14:02

And that site also has the garmin product number for the 301 so you can look up the software on Garmin's site. It's empty at the moment, but keep your eye on it as you should eventually be able to download the new software for it.


Posted: 15/12/2004 at 14:27

Thanks for the info, Foo-Bar. That looks pretty done and dusted now.

Cairo - I'm pretty sure that the existing functionality will be carried forward to the 301, but I don't know for sure, of course.

How important is the HRM for you? If 'very', then I'd definitely wait. If 'not very' then to be honest I might still wait, because I suspect that the 201 will drop sharply in price (as well as a lot of used 201s coming onto Ebay as their owners trade up to the 301).

Posted: 15/12/2004 at 22:45

For me, in training I use the HRM a lot - I hae a Polar that I use with my 201. I have had my training zones tested, and use the heart rate as an indicator as to where I should be training. I don't use it all the time, but I would like to have the functionality all in one unit - right now I look like a weirdo with all this stuff on!

Posted: 16/12/2004 at 11:43

Does anyone know of anyone actually selling the 301 yet?

Most recent RW has a full page add - but their website doesn't say anything more than we all know already & still none the wiser on price. But it does look good.

Posted: 05/01/2005 at 14:32

From what I have seen, the 301 is going to be officially announces at the CES show Jan 5-9, and shipping towards the end of January.

Posted: 05/01/2005 at 14:56

Thanks Brian,

So I guess it'll be another couple of days to a week to get an official idea on price & a month or so to see them in UK shops. Just in time for my birthday.

Posted: 05/01/2005 at 15:04

Looks like its just been announced on the site under "newsflash"
with a price of $324.98 and with USB connection.

Posted: 05/01/2005 at 15:09

Does that mean that the UK price will be in the region of £175(using todays exchange rate on Yahoo Finance £1 = $1.88), or is it not that simple? I hope it is that simple, cos thats a very good price.

Posted: 05/01/2005 at 15:16

I don't know - in Canada there were price differences between what Garmin had as MSRP and what retailers were selling at, especially after conversion. I am going to wait and see what the retailers hereare going to charge for it.

Posted: 05/01/2005 at 15:20

Generally with stuff that is imported over from the states with a dollar price, you wont be far out by converting the dollars to pounds - so about £324.

one other problem at the moment, is the mapsource CD that can be used for analysing your runs, is only for the N.America

Hopefully, when it comes over here, they use Tracklogs

Posted: 05/01/2005 at 15:27


If your right on price, then I'll be looking for deals on a 201.

Posted: 05/01/2005 at 15:34

I've heard £220 somewhere, but can't be sure

Posted: 05/01/2005 at 15:35

£200 seems to be the going price for the 301 now :)

Posted: 25/01/2005 at 18:08

Online UK stores seem to range anywhere from £200 up to £245. The next problem is that stocks are very limited and a number of stores aren't even aware its been released yet.

Sporttek and Digiwoo seem to be the best bet at the moment if you want one soon.

Posted: 25/01/2005 at 18:19

Just taken delivery of my Forerunner 301. Ordered it from - £200, including next day delivery.

Used it for the first time tonight and so far (without having gone into detail on the features) I have to say I'm well impressed! It was easy to get it up and running out of the box, the software installed without a problem and I was able to download my workout easily.

Did a hill session tonight so I was able to re-live the pain by plotting heart rate against pace, etc.

This is the first time I've used a SDM so I can't compare the 301 to other models. But I'm impressed with it so far and can't wait to get out there and make more use of it. Surely this will make me run faster and further!!!

Posted: 02/02/2005 at 22:54

J-ache - don't suppose you've figured out how to change the display from km to miles or vice versa? I can't figure it out for the life of me.

I did my first run with it tonight and was chuffed to bits with the results, especially on the PC.

Posted: 02/02/2005 at 23:00

Ignore that, I was being a prize-winning idiot.

* hangs head in shame *

Posted: 02/02/2005 at 23:09

i spoke to garmin suplier and if I remember right I think 196 + vat

Posted: 03/02/2005 at 17:53

I have a timex heart rate monitor and cannto decide if it is worht waiting to get a 301 when anyone gets some stock and pay that bit extra for it, or to just go for hte 201.
any adviec form anyone who knows the products welcoem!

Posted: 03/02/2005 at 18:21

I've given my Polar HRM to my daughter and I am very pleased with the 301. It is very easy to navigate through the menus and most are self explanatory. The manual is not quite as comprehansive as I would like. For example you can display grade as a % - but what does it mean? My main niggle is with the software. When you download to the PC it always downloads every run from the 301's memory, even the ones you downloaded before. I am finding that this corrupts the previous runs by adding in extra laps. There is no save as facility in the software so you cannot save a backup file. It seems I may have to delete a run from the 301 that I have already downloaded so that it cannot download again.
The graphs the software produces are excellent, but it would be nice to be able to print them so you can compare performances on the same route, more easily.
As I said, these are just niggles. The whole bundle is excellent. Although I had to justify the purchase on the grounds of simultaneously having a birthday and some back-pay.

Posted: 03/02/2005 at 19:23

Mine doesn't do that it just downloads the highlighted days run (I think) as I've never had any extra laps on runs already done

Posted: 04/02/2005 at 14:01

HJ.. i've not found that problem with the software.

Posted: 04/02/2005 at 16:48

HonitonJohn, I have the same gripe about not being able to print or save workouts or back-up workouts to cd. However in the box with my 301 came a flyer for It's possible to subscribe to this website at no cost, and up-load workouts to it and export from it (so they say). That may be a way round the back-up/archiving problem.

It is a real pain not being able to print though, you can't even copy and paste the graphs!

Posted: 04/02/2005 at 16:54

Thanks for the replies. I must have another look at the downloading.
One way round the printing Jelly Bean, is to press the prt scr key on your keyboard. This captures the whole display to the clipboard. You can then paste into WORD or other program and use the crop tool from the picture toolbar to get rid of all but the graph. A bit long-winded but it works.

Posted: 04/02/2005 at 17:11

Jelly Bean mentioned MotionBased earlier. I've now been to their website and downloaded their "agent" (despite the fact that the UK is not currently supported). I had hoped there might be some limited functionality but when you try to upload activities to MotionBased it discards them because they relate to an unsupported country.

Looks like we'll have to make do with the Training Centre software for now.

Posted: 09/02/2005 at 23:34

I was wondering about the d/loading problem - I'd like it to only download runs that aren't already on the PC.

Posted: 12/02/2005 at 10:06

I just got mine(301)from Canada at for £146 inc P&P + Insurance Unfortunately even though it had 'gift' marked up I still got charged £35 Vat by postie, but it still is cheaper that you can get it in the UK. The base price in Canada was about £128!
It works fine, and as someone else said on another link you can charge it up on the USB cable, or just get a UK-US plug adapter -it states in the guide that it can handle 110-240v

Posted: 03/03/2005 at 14:44

Is the charger the same on the 301 and the 201. I have lost my 201 charger and thought that if I bought a 301 ....

Posted: 03/03/2005 at 20:03

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