Coros Vertix 2S review: the ultimate adventure watch just got even better

With even more accurate GPS tracking and an improved optical sensor, the Vertix is now even easier to recommend

Coros Vertix 2S watch on woman's wrist showing home screen with moon graphic
(Image: © Future)

Advnture Verdict

Cleverly designed and likeable, this watch takes the best features of the Coros Vertix 2 and adds a new biometric sensor and improved GPS algorithm for even more accurate location tracking. It really delivers, with some of the most accurate results of any watch I've tested to date, all presented in a way that's clear and easy to view. If your wallet can stretch to it, the Vertix 2S comes very highly recommended.


  • +

    Superb GPS accuracy

  • +

    New heart rate sensor

  • +

    Well designed controls

  • +

    Intuitive mobile app

  • +

    Two bands supplied

  • +

    Free offline maps


  • -

    Quite chunky to wear

  • -

    Pricey at $699

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Meet the tester

Written by
Cat Ellis
Written by
Cat Ellis

Cat has been testing GPS watches for years, having previously worked as fitness editor for Advnture's sister site TechRadar, and can usually be found running or hiking with one on each wrist (though she hasn't resorted to ankles yet).

Coros Vertix 2S: first impressions

The Coros Vertix 2 was a good watch, but the Coros Vertix 2S makes it great with a handful of small but meaningful changes.


• List price: $699
• Case size: 50.3mm
• Weight: 70g (with nylon strap)
• Display type: Memory-in-pixel
• Water rating: 10ATM
• Best use: Road and trail running, hiking, climbing

The overall design is very similar, with a circular resin case, titanium bezel, and memory-in-pixel display topped with tough sapphire crystal, but you'll immediately notice some differences. 

The new watch comes in three colorways: Earth (blue), Moon (gray), and Space (black), each of which has an attractive themed watch face preinstalled. You can easily switch to someone more conventional in the Coros app, but I found it a pleasant change from the data-focused faces favored by most watchmakers. I tested the Moon version, and the face even features animated clouds over Earth an a tiny comet that sometimes shoots across the sky.

Coros Vertix 2S watch with silicone strap, nylon strap, and carabiner accessory

The Coros Vertix 2S is supplied with silicone and nylon bands in the box. It also fits in the carabiner clip released for the Vertix 2 last year (available to buy separately) (Image credit: Future)

The watch has a textured quick-release silicone band very similar to that of the Vertix 2, but also comes with a breathable nylon strap that fastens with Velcro. Nylon is lighter than silicone and many athletes find it less likely to cause skin irritation by trapping sweat against the skin, so having both included in the package was a welcome surprise. It also accepts the same quick-fit bands as the Vertix 2 if you feel like a different look.

Speaking of packaging, Coros has also updated the reusable case supplied with the Vertix 2S. While the Vertix 2 came with a large plastic case, the Vertix 2S comes in a smaller box made from molded pulp. It's still durable, and resealable thanks to a small dot of Velcro, but it'll be much easier to recycle when you no longer need it, and the smaller size means more of the watches can be transported at once, thereby reducing emissions.

Side view of Coros Vertix 2S watch showing three buttons

The watch is controlled using a touchscreen and three buttons on the right-hand side. The central button rotates like a crown, and can be held to unlock the watch (Image credit: Future)

It's a chunky watch that's a little thicker than its predecessor, measuring 50.3 x 50.3 x 17.6mm including the slight bulge of the sensor housing at the back. That extra thickness is due to an upgraded biometric sensor package, which includes more LEDs and light sensors designed to gather more accurate data, which is fed into the watch's various health and fitness-tracking algorithms.

Despite that thickness though, The Coros Vertix 2 isn't not excessively heavy, weighing 70g with the nylon band fitted. For comparison, the tough Garmin Enduro 2 is 51 x 51 x 15.6mm, and weighs 79g with its nylon strap.

Back view of Coros Vertix 2S watch showing charging port and heart rate sensor

The Coros Vertix 2S has an upgraded heart rate sensor to provide more accurate biometric data (Image credit: Future)

The watch is controlled using a touchscreen, two physical buttons on the right-hand side, and a central crown that can be turned to scroll through options or pressed to select the one currently highlighted. Hitting the top button at any time activates the backlight, which is bright and doesn't muddy the screen colors like the lights of some other MiP sports watches.

Coros Vertix 2S: on the road

The Coros Vertix 2S is a very likeable watch, with various smart touches that show it was designed by active sportspeople. For example, the watch's controls are cleverly implemented in a way that eliminates the risk of accidental button presses, even when you're messing about with gloves and layers. The backlight is activated by pressing the top button, but to perform any other actions you'll need to unlock the watch by holding the crown button for three seconds. It's a simple system, but one that works extremely well (some watches make it all to easy to turn the crown by mistake).

The resin case back might not look at slick as a full titanium case, but it's light and does a great job resisting knocks and scratches. I was also pleased to find that the Coros Vertix 2S fits the carabiner clip that the company released for the Vertix 2 last year. This means you can keep your wrists free when climbing and still track your location, without worrying about scuffing your new device on a rock.

Coros Apex 2S watch on woman's wrist showing completed 6.2-mile run

My pre-measured 10km run was measured with impressive accuracy (Image credit: Future)

Another major change for the Coros Vertix 2S is a new algorithm for improved GPS accuracy. This update is particularly aimed at climbing activities, but the new algorithm is also good news for runners. During my pre-measured 10km run, the Coros Vertix 2S plotted the distance correct to within 100 meters. That's no mean feat for a route that passes between tall buildings and occasionally under bridges, which have been known to throw other watches off massively (including, most recently, the Garmin Forerunner 165). 

Sleep and activity data syncs automatically with the Coros app on your phone, which is well laid out and simple to use, making particularly good use of graphs  to illustrate changes in your health and fitness over time. It's a small touch, but the ability to tap a graph and see a zoomed-in view in landscape orientation is very helpful and makes it much easier to read the data presented. 

Data captured by Coros Vertix 2S watch displayed in Coros mobile app

The Coros app is packed with rich data, clearly labelled, and you can tap any graph to see it full-screen (Image credit: Future)

The watch comes with simple interval sessions pre-programmed, but if you've got a specific goal in mind then you can create your own training plans or import them from third-party tools like TrainingPeaks (which is my preference for marathon training). Just select the 'Third party apps' option in the Coros mobile app and follow the on-screen instructions to connect your accounts and transfer your plan across. The app will transfer seven days of structured workouts at a time, and currently supports running, swimming, cycling, and gym training. When you finish tracking a workout with the Vertix 2, it will sync with TrainingPeaks automatically.

Maps can be imported for free through the Map Manager tool in the app, which makes it easy to download only the areas you need by allowing you to select blocks from a world map. It's an intuitive interface, and will make you wonder why other watch makers don't organize maps the same way.

Data captured by Coros Vertix 2S watch displayed in Coros mobile app

Like all sports watches, the Vertix 2S works best when worn all day and night, allowing it to track activity and recovery (Image credit: Future)

Once downloaded, your maps will be available offline whenever you need them, so there's no need to worry about having a Bluetooth connection to your phone or mobile data connectivity. No longer need a section of map? Just select it in the Map Manager and remove it.

Do bear in mind that you can only download maps when your phone has a Wi-Fi connection to avoid burning through your mobile data plan.

Battery life is slightly sorter than for the Vertix 2, which is likely due to the demands of the new heart rate sensor. However, it still blows most rival adventure watches out of the water. According to Coros it will run for 40 days in everyday use, and that seems to be an understatement; after my first three weeks of testing the battery will still on 67%.

It's certainly not a cheap watch, with a list price of $699, but that's no different to the Coros Vertix 2 at launch, and is par for the course for a high-end GPS watch with a MiP display (about the same as the Garmin Fenix 7 when it launched in 2022).

Cat Ellis

Cat is the editor of Advnture, She’s been a journalist for 15 years, and was fitness and wellbeing editor on TechRadar before joining the Advnture team in 2022. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better), usually wearing at least two sports watches.