One of our favorite camping mattresses for many years running, the MegaMat 10 is spacious, self-inflating, and offers exceptional warmth and comfort. Four inches of foam filling insulates from the cold ground and supports the pressure points of a sleeping body while dampening the "riding on air" effect of all air mattresses. This mattress does suffer compared to the competition when considering its massive size, both packed and ready to use. But these complaints are pretty insignificant when assessing its overall awesomeness — which is off the charts! It is not cheap, but it sure is comfortable.For couples who desire this level of comfort, check out the Exped MegaMat Duo 10, which offers the same performance sized for two people.
Exped MegaMat 10 Review
Cons: Large packed size, expensive
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The Megamat has been an Editors' Choice for years and remains a favorite in the camping mattress line-up. It is exceptionally warm, deliciously comfortable, and relatively easy to use. While it was nudged out of the top spot by mattresses that are slightly easier to inflate and store, and just a little more affordable, this mat will provide a lot of joy for any car camping adventure.
Comfort is a primary metric when it comes to sleeping mattresses, and this pad is one of the very best. The foam in the MegaMat 10 not only insulates, but it also pads pressure points and totally protects from rough ground. The foam works its magic when you underinflate the mattress a smidge, keeping your body equally supported by the air. To achieve your desired level of squish, fully inflate the mattress, then, when you are settled into your sleeping bag, open the inflate valve and gently press it to burp out small amounts of air.
Besides its crazy high amount of comfort, one of the things we liked best about the MegaMat is how it combines comfort with enormous size and vertical sidewalls, ensuring that you can use the entire surface for your sleeping pleasure. We tested the LW version, which measures 30 by 77.5 inches. While these dimensions are on par with some of the other mattresses in this review, the added comfort and support of the MegaMat make this an ideal choice for larger campers, side and stomach sleepers, and anyone who typically struggles with uncomfortable pressure points. While testing the mattresses in this review side-by-side, the MegaMat was one that our reviewers fought over to relax on.
Ease of Use
Exped recommends leaving the MegaMat to sit and inflate for 10-15 minutes and then use the included mini-pump to inflate it the rest of the way. There is a little toggle on the one-way inflation valve that you can insert into the valve that may make inflation faster, but we didn't notice much difference with or without the toggle. Initial inflation takes a bit longer, and we highly recommend setting this up at home before you take it camping, to get those foam cells used to having air in them.
We found that if we left this mattress for a longer period — 40-50 minutes — it self-inflates almost up to our desired comfort level with only a few pumps to top it off. But for the impatient, the mini-pump will inflate this mattress in a few minutes. The pump snaps onto the inflate valve and is quite easy to use with your hand or foot.
Deflating the MegaMat 10 is easy! It took us less than two minutes to deflate and roll-up this mattress. The deflation valve opening is large, allowing a lot of air to rush out, although it is helpful to use bodyweight to fully push out the air. While the one-way deflation valve means you don't have to open and close it while working to roll this mattress up (unlike some of the competition), you do need to close this valve after rolling up the MegaMat to prevent it from filling with air during storage.
We didn't think we would have a favorite stuff sack, but the Sidewinder stuff sack that comes with this mattress opens from the side, which drastically improves the ease of getting the mat into its sack. Once you roll up the mat, just drop it inside. The sack is spacious, meaning it can fit an imperfectly-rolled mat plus extra bedding and/or a small pillow easily. It has a small side pocket for the mini-pump, and the leash that buckles to close the sack doubles as a shoulder sling for easy carrying.
There's plenty of foam cushioning in the MegaMat 10, which helps push its R-value to 9.5. What's that mean? The higher the R-value, the better the mattress is at insulating; most winter campers recommend a sleeping pad R-value of at least 4. With an insanely high R-value of 9.5, you can comfortably sleep out on the snow or even a glacier with this model. While a few mattresses boast even higher R-values, we found no reason to complain about the MegaMat. It does a phenomenal job keeping us warm.
It's worth noting that sleeping on highly insulating mats doesn't mean you will be hot in warm temperatures. They are not heating your body, like a sleeping bag, but insulating. We found this model to be quite comfortable for lounging on the warmest summer days.
Considering the size and weight of the MegaMat, this isn't the camping mattress you'd choose to take on your through-hike of the Appalachian Trail. It lacks the versatility of some of the lightweight mattresses that pack down into a small and convenient travel package. It is huge, heavy, and fat. You really won't want to lug this 6.1 pound beast very far from your car.
The MegaMat also loses points for versatility because of its gigantic proportions. The LW version that we tested is ideal for maximum indulgent sleeping, but it completely takes over a two-person tent. As your average two-person tent is 50-55 inches wide, this mattress only leaves room for a second sleep system that is very small, which we doubt your partner will find nearly as comfy as your MegaMat. There is a slightly narrower version (25.6 inches) which may suit you, or you need to have a two-person tent that is at minimum 60 inches wide! So check your tent dimensions before purchasing this comfy mega-monster.
While not the most important feature of a car-camping mattress, packed size is still something to consider. After all, with a whole family trying to fit into the Subaru for a weekend of camping, there is only so much space to be filled, and a heap of giant mattresses could easily take up most of it. Rolling up to a whopping 9 by 33 inches, this mattress doesn't pack down very small at all. On the other hand, it is a bit smaller in packed size to others we reviewed while being one of the most comfortable.
The MegaMat is among the most expensive of the self-inflating, single-person air mattresses in our review. However, it's one of the best camping mattresses we have slept on, and never makes us crave our beds back at home. You won't regret purchasing this mattress — after all, you can't put a price on good sleep!
The MegaMat 10 is incredibly comfortable and warm and provides some of the best sleep outdoors we have ever had. If you have room in the car for big comfy sleeping mats, these are absolutely worth the cost. For reluctant campers or those that thought they never want to go camping again, we would highly recommend giving this mattress a try!
— Laurel Hunter & Matt Bento