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(Pocket-lint) - Tag Heuer has a new Connected watch, bringing some innovation to smartwatches with the introduction of modularity.

It looks very much like the previous Connected 46 watch, with both offering a sporty style and firmly placed in the luxury segment of the smartwatch market. 

But which Tag should you go for? Here's how the differences break down. 

Tag Heuer Connected Modular 45 vs Connected 46: Design

  • Both offer sporty design
  • Modular 45 offers much greater customisation
  • Better waterproofing on Modular 45

The Tag Heuer Connected Modular 45 sticks to the same design as the Connected 46, offering sporty looks like Tag's "normal" Carrera watches. Both watch bodies are titanium (although there are rose gold and other material options), but the original Connected 46 is grade 2, the new Modular 45 is grade 5, a titanium alloy.

The Modular 45 is a smaller diameter at 45mm compared to 46mm of the older model - hence the names. The older Connected 46 is 12.8mm thick whereas the new Modular 45 is 13.75mm thick. The new Modular model is 62.5g compared to 52g of the 2016 model. 

The case back on the new Modular 45 is also titanium, whereas the original Connected 46 is plastic. The original watch is IP67 rated, whereas the new Modular 45 is rated to 5ATM, so it's better protected.

However, the biggest design change is that the lugs are a separate piece from the watch module - so the lugs can be changed - and the watch module can be swapped from the Android Wear unit to a mechanical unit on the Modular 45. You'll be able to buy a Calibre 05 automatic or tourbillon chronograph module separately, providing a lot more options.

The strap designs are similar, with both offering rubber in many colours, leather, ceramic and metal band options, but the Modular 45 has the obvious advantage of being more customisable.

Tag Heuer Connected Modular 45 vs Connected 46: Display 

  • AMOLED display with higher resolution on the 45
  • Old Connected 46 has a larger display 

Ignoring the mechanical options on the Modular 45, the new watch comes with an AMOLED display that's 1.39-inches diameter with a 400 x 400 pixel resolution, for 287ppi. The original Connected 46 has a 1.5-inch LCD display with 360 x 360 pixel resolution for 240ppi. 

The new model is smaller, but it is a better type of display technology with a higher resolution, so it looks better.

Both are topped with a sapphire glass cover for protection.

Tag Heuer Connected Modular 45 vs Connected 46: Hardware specs

  • Same Intel Atom Z34XX processor
  • Less RAM in the new watch
  • Same 410mAh battery 

Both watches are Intel powered, the Connected 46 offering an Atom Z34XX processor with 1GB RAM and 4GB storage. The new Modular 45 is also powered by an Atom Z34XX processor, but is detailed as having 512GB RAM and 4GB storage. There doesn't seem to be much difference in performance based on our experience.

Both Tag Heuer models also have 410mAh battery that use contact changing. Both watches also claim to be able to give you 24 hours of use, although the new model is pushing a higher resolution display and has more sensors to support. In reality, both watches need charging overnight.

Tag Heuer Connected Modular 45 vs Connected 46: Sensors and connectivity

  • Modular 45 gets NFC
  • Modular 45 gets GPS

The new Tag Heuer Connected Modular 45 gets a range of new upgrades that open the door for more options. Both watches offer the regular Bluetooth and Wi-Fi for connectivity, and both also include motion sensors and gyroscope. 

The Modular 45, however, has GPS, meaning its better placed to serve you as a sporty device. You'll be able to track your location in various apps, so you'll know how far you've walked, run or biked without the need for your phone.

NFC also means you can use the Modular 45 with Android Pay. This adds convenience, meaning you can just tap your watch on compatible payment terminals, so there's no need to get your card or phone out of your pocket.

Neither watch offers heart rate tracking, but you could use a Bluetooth heart rate sensor.

Tag Heuer Connected Modular 45 vs Connected 46: Price 

  • Tag Heuer Connected 46 is £1100
  • Tag Heuer Connected Modular 45 from £1200

The Tag Heuer Connected 46 is £1100, with the Modular 45 available from £1200. As detailed, you get a range of enhanced technologies for your money like those additional sensors and a better display. The expense is more likely to be explained away by the modular nature, in addition to the titanium backplate. This is only at the core level, however. 

The advantage that the Modular 45 offers is the wide range of customisation you're offered. Although the Connected 46 offers 11 base models - apart from opting for the £7500 rose gold body - the only real difference is the strap.

The Modular 45, however, has 56 base models in the collection. Not only can you choose the straps, you can choose the lugs - diamond set, rose gold, black ceramic - you can buy a mechanical watch body to replace the digital body, as well as pick a body that with a different colour bezel.

There's the potential to spend a lot more money with the Modular 45 as you choose the perfect watch for you, but at the same time, there's so much choice, you can make your watch a masterpiece. However, if you've one design in mind, the Connected 46 could save you a little cash.

Writing by Chris Hall. Originally published on 14 March 2017.