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Garmin eTrex Touch 35 Review

The Garmin eTrex Touch 35 is the latest incarnation of the Garmin eTrex series. The eTrex Touch is the first eTrex with a touchscreen and offers a new compelling main menu: after startup you can choose between different activities like cycling, hunting or geocaching.

The eTrex Touch 35 provides a full feature set including GPS & GLONASS, barometric altimeter, 3-axis electronic compass, wireless unit-to-unit transfer, ANT+, Bluetooth, smart notification, fitness sensors, microSD slot, 8 GB internal memory, IPX7 rating and all typical Garmin navigation features like turn-by-turn driving directions!

The eTrex Touch is quite handy, the physical dimensions are as small as 2.3” x 4.0” x 1.3” / 5.8 x 10.2 x 3.3 cm, the weight is about 5.6 oz / 159 g with batteries. The 1.43″ x 2.15″ / 3.6 x 5.5 cm touchscreen offers a low display resolution (160 x 240 pixels). When you want to have a high resolution display you should have a look at the Garmin Oregon 700/750 with his class-leading display in terms of visibility and resolution!

Garmin eTrex Touch 35Pin
Garmin eTrex Touch 35

Battery life is amazing, with eneloop batteries we get between 10:15 hh:mm (our power mode) and 15:45 hh:mm (our energy saving mode).

The interface is quite user-friendly, but it takes some time to set up the various menus and settings (read our eTrex Touch 25 / 35 settings guide). We recommend to switch to the classic mode, which gives you an interface similar to the Garmin Oregon devices. However, a small pop-up menu (offering some useful informations and buttons) on the bottom of the screen is really annoying. You only get rid of it when starting the track log.

The eTrex Touch 35 offers a separate track manager and an activity history. This combination can be confusing, because the tracks output as activity files by default (FIT format) and you find them only in the activity history. You can convert the activities to tracks, but it might be better to save them as tracks (GPX files) straight from the beginning. In the settings you can change the output format from "Activities (FIT)" to "Tracks (GPX/FIT)".

We tested the Garmin eTrex Touch 35 during different outdoor activities like hiking and mountain biking and found a lot of good and some bad aspects (listed below)!

Garmin eTrex Touch Review – GPS

Our map provides some tracks recorded with various Garmin handhelds and wearables (fenix 3, epix, Oregon 600, eTrex 30). You can use this for GPS accuracy data comparisons and making up your own mind.

In our opinion the GPS accuracy of the eTrex Touch can be compared with similar handhelds like the Oregon 600 or the eTrex 30.

Garmin eTrex Touch Review – Key Specifications

  • Rating: IPX7
  • Weight, size: 159 g / 5.8 x 10.2 x 3.3 cm / 5.6 oz / 2.3” x 4.0” x 1.3”
  • Display: 2.6″, 1.43″ x 2.15″ / 3.6 x 5.5 cm, 65K color TFT, 160 x 240 pixels
  • Battery: Two AA batteries
  • Battery life: up to 16 hours
  • Satellite systems: GPS / GLONASS / WAAS / EGNOS
  • Interface: ANT+ / Bluetooth LE / USB
  • Memory: 8 GB (4.9 GB free for user data)
  • Sensors (ANT+): Heart rate, bike speed, bike cadence, temperature, chirp
  • Sensors (build in): Barometric altimeter, 3-axis compass
  • Wireless: Sending & receiving data from compatible devices (e.g. waypoints, tracks)
  • Smartphone: Smart notifications, live tracking
  • 4.000 waypoints
  • 200 routes (250 waypoints each)
  • 200 saved tracks
  • 2.000 archive tracks
  • 10.000 points per track
  • 250.000 preloaded geocaches
  • No limit on geocaches (outside of max number of GPX files supported and memory available)
  • Optimised for multiple activities – just select and go!
  • Preloaded with Garmin TopoActive Europe maps
  • Bright 2.6’’ colour capacitive touchscreen
  • Altimeter and 3-axis tilt-compensated compass
  • ANT+ sensor support and Smartphone Notifications
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Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on https://www.amazon.co.uk/ at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.

eTrex Touch – Best For

  • Hiking
  • Cycling
  • Geocaching
  • All-Round Use

Final Verdict – Garmin eTrex Touch Review

SUMMARY: The Garmin eTrex Touch 35 can be recommended for various outdoor activities, especially when you need a light and small touchscreen device with long battery life and a full feature set!

eTrex Touch – Pros

  • Screen visibility
  • Battery life (ranging from 10:15 to 15:45 hh:mm, with low self discharge NiMH batteries)
  • Full feature set for different outdoor activities
  • Activity profiles
  • Home screen with preconfigured activities
  • Wireless ANT+ interface for unit-to-unit transfer and sensors (e.g. temperature, heart rate)
  • Availability of maps (different types, global, free OpenStreetMaps)
  • Huge range of accessoires

eTrex Touch – Cons

  • Low resolution screen
  • Confusing combination of “activity history” and “track manager“
  • No way to save a track log as gpx only
  • Annoying pop-up window when the track log is not active
  • Virtual keyboard is quite small

eTrex Touch – Score

  • GPS: 80%
  • Battery: 80%
  • Display: 80%
  • Handling: 60%
  • Navigation: 80%
  • Features: 80%
  • Maps: 100%
  • Final Verdict: 80%
  • Optimised for multiple activities – just select and go!
  • Preloaded with Garmin TopoActive Europe maps
  • Bright 2.6’’ colour capacitive touchscreen
  • Altimeter and 3-axis tilt-compensated compass
  • ANT+ sensor support and Smartphone Notifications
(* = affiliate link / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases / image source: Amazon partner program)
×
Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on https://www.amazon.co.uk/ at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
Note: The articles may contain affiliate links. If you buy through these links I will receive a commission; thus you support the continuation of this website. There are no additional costs for you. It is up to you where and when you buy a product. I do not receive any information about the buyer.

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10 thoughts on “Garmin eTrex Touch 35 Review”

  1. I have 15 cache locations entered into the GPX file, but only two show on the screen. Is there something I can do to have all 15 show? I’ve tried a lot of the filter options, but don’t seem to have done the right thing to this point…

    Reply
    • Hi,
      where are these geocaches? Only geocaches within a distance of (more or less) 150 km from your position are visible.

      Reply
    • Well, the eTrex 30x has a superior battery life and the screen readability is also better … so I rank it a bit higher then the Touch 35!

      Reply
  2. Hello,
    I have Etrex Touch 35, I put the last firmware version 3.60 (but it was ditto with version 3.50) and I found when I am on the home screen "Hiking", that I chose another activity by putting the following "cyclotourism" for exemple, and I press the circle "cyclotourism" to access the map, the Etrex 35 goes out and this, every time I try.

    Reply
      • Hi,
        thanks for your reply, yes, a reset is the best (and I guess the only) method to solve this problem.
        cheers

        Reply
    • I owned the etrex 30 and the 35T is much better. You can navigate much faster with the touch screeen and find things on the map much easier. It is very different, the old one in my case was not as usefull as I thought, I didn´t use it. This one is diferent, the bluetooth conection conect fast with the mobile and pass all the data to strava or garmin connect.

      It is much better.

      Reply