Top critical review
Not as pictured, not very warm.
26 January 2018
I wanted a synthetic insulated jacket after getting a down jacket soaked, so researched a bit and went for this.
After reading the Amazon reviews, as well as a favourable review in Trail magazine, I was somewhat disappointed with this jacket.
The one I received has distinctly less fill or ‘puff’ than the pictured item. Less volume usually equals less warmth, and testing it outside swapping between other insulated jackets (a featherweight down jacket weighing just 350g and an old Primaloft insulated North Face Redpoint jacket) I found this, contrary to other reviews, to have not much warmth at all despite the reflective lining.
Perhaps mine was just under filled compared to others. Sometimes being packaged tightly can mean the insulation gets compressed so I left it hanging up for a couple of weeks but it made no difference.
I ordered size Large after some other reviewers reported them as generously proportioned. I found it to be what I’d expect for a Large, although a little more generous than some high-end British brands who tend to undersize in my opinion. American brands are usually larger and more true to size in my experience. It’s not a close-fitting cut with a little more in the body than some.
I’m 6’1”, under 14st with 34” waist and 43” chest which sometimes means a Large is tight under the armpits, but this was ok. The sleeves were also long enough for me, the torso too, although as mentioned the torso room was ample, but the adjustable hem means it doesn’t leave gaps around the bottom.
The hood is large and loose fitting and I wouldn’t be surprised if it fitted over a climbing helmet but didn’t try it. The drawstring adjustment helped a little here too but it was still loose. There is no wired peak so it can’t be pulled in too tight or it folds in over the face.
The outer shell seems to have a good water repellent coating and the jacket looked well made.
Jacket weighs 700g so it’s not particularly light.
All in all I guess you get what you pay for, and generally synthetic is cheaper than down and less warm per volume, but you can get warmer jackets in synthetic and genuine down at more or less this price, and recent developments in hydrophobic down make up for some of its shortcomings when wet, so that’s what I’ll be doing, looking at other options.