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ORCA 58 Quart Review

All around a great cooler that specifically boasts impressive insulation power and durability
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ORCA 58 Quart Review
Credit: Abriah Wofford
Price:  $360 List
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Manufacturer:   ORCA
By Genaveve Bradshaw, Maggie Nichols, and Rebecca Glades  ⋅  Oct 9, 2023
86
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#2 of 19
  • Insulation - 50% 9.8
  • Durability - 20% 8.0
  • Ease of Use - 15% 7.8
  • Portability - 10% 5.0
  • Additional Features - 5% 7.9

Our Verdict

The Orca 58 was one of the best coolers in our insulation testing and boasts some seriously impressive cooling capabilities. Rotomolded construction and an airtight seal help earn this cooler an IGBC certification. The tall, thin design helps it stand out among the coolers we tested, though we think it also makes this cooler a little more challenging to dig through. We also feel that this shape makes it less conducive to carry, and we weren't the biggest fans of the narrow, rigid handles. Overall, it's a high-performing cooler and might be precisely the cooler you've been searching for.
REASONS TO BUY
Excellent insulation
Great drainage
Durable
Compact design
REASONS TO AVOID
Tall narrow shape is hard to dig through
Expensive
Not our favorite handles

Compare to Similar Products

 
orca 58 quart
This Product
ORCA 58 Quart
Awards Editors' Choice Award Editors' Choice Award Top Pick Award Best Buy Award Top Pick Award 
Price $360 List
$359.95 at Amazon
$400.00 at REI
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$399 List
$399.00 at REI
$227 List$200 List
$199.00 at Amazon
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Bottom Line Top-notch insulation in a long-lasting, compact design that will last for years to comeWhile on the pricier side, you can't beat this cooler's insulationWheels that work and features you didn’t know you couldn’t live withoutWith reliable performance, this cooler is a great shape, easy to use, and a good valueA budget-friendly rotomolded option that includes great features and is available in many colors
Rating Categories ORCA 58 Quart Yeti Roadie 48 RovR RollR 60 Xspec 60qt RTIC Ultralight 52
Insulation (50%)
9.8
10.0
8.5
8.7
8.1
Durability (20%)
8.0
7.7
7.4
7.6
5.6
Ease of Use (15%)
7.8
8.4
8.0
7.4
7.4
Portability (10%)
5.0
9.5
8.0
7.0
8.5
Additional Features (5%)
7.9
7.6
9.0
7.2
5.9
Specs ORCA 58 Quart Yeti Roadie 48 RovR RollR 60 Xspec 60qt RTIC Ultralight 52
Shelf Life of Food (Measured Days Below 40ºF) 6.7 6.8 6.0 6.1 5.8
Days of Cold Beverages (Measured Days Below 50º F) 7.3 7.5 6.6 6.7 6.3
Measured Weight 30.5 Ibs 26.6 Ibs 39.0 Ibs 30.3 Ibs 21.6 Ibs
Measured Capacity in Cans 82 77 78 90 61
Measured Capacity 56 qt 45 qt 42 qt 57 qt 49 qt
Advertised Capacity 58 qt 48 qt 60 qt 60 qt 52 qt
Internal Maximum Body Height 13.0" 15.8" 14.1" 13.0" 12.0"
Does it Fit a Wine or 2L Bottle Standing Upright? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Measured Exterior Dimensions (L x W x H) 26.6" x 20.0" x 19.4" 20.1" x 19.8" x 20.8" 27.2" x 20.5" x 20.5" 29.5" x 17.0" x 18.0" 27.3" x 18.5" x 17.5"
Outer Construction Rotomolded Not listed Rotomolded Rotomolded Rotomolded
Inner Construction Manufacturer lists "Integrated insulation" Pressure-injected polyurethane Not listed 3" of polyurethane insulation Not listed

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Orca 58 is a 56-quart cooler with unbeatable insulation results. It's built to last with a rotomolded body and leakproof gasket. This impressive cooler can hold up to 82 cans or fit an upright wine bottle. Though it's a challenge to transport around, it is far easier than others its size.

Performance Comparison


The Orca comes with helpful features, like this drain.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Insulation


As one of the top performers in our torturous insulation testing, the Orca is a seriously impressive cooler. It maintained USDA-recommended safe food temperatures of 40º or less for a full 6.7 days. That's pretty much a week of safe food temps without adding extra ice. It also maintained refreshing beer temperatures of 50º or less for an impressive 7.3 days.


The Orca is one of many rotomolded coolers we tested with a rubber gasket to seal its contents and an integrated hinge to help prevent bear entry. When it comes to keeping things cold, the Orca is the top choice. The cooler is available in many colors. We tested the white option, which will provide longer results. We didn't, however, prechill the cooler prior to our tests as we wanted a clear representation of what it looks like to pack up and go. Should you need your cooler to last beyond 6.7 days, you should be able to squeeze a few more hours in by prechilling it.

orca 58 quart - overall insulation results or coolers. when compared to all others...
Overall insulation results or coolers. When compared to all others, the Orca (in dark purple) lasted the longest.
Credit: Rebecca Glades

Durability


In our durability tests, we put the Orca through the wringer. We found it to be super sturdy to sit or stand on — though its narrow base makes it easier to tip or wobble than most of the other coolers we tested. It has thick rubber latches and sturdy rope handles to facilitate this cooler's lifespan. We found the integrated hinge to be as solid as we'd hoped. When subjected to our wear and tear, it showed no signs of weakness. We jumped on it and yanked it around. Still, we had no concerns for its longevity.


Overall, the cooler feels well-made and unlikely to break. Thanks to its rubber gasket, the cooler didn't leak too much while we transported it from destination to destination. Almost every cooler had at least a small leak from the lid, and the Orca wasn't immune to this, as a few drops of water escaped.

orca 58 quart - the orca comes with thick rubber latches.
The Orca comes with thick rubber latches.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Ease of Use


With a simple design, the Orca is reasonably user-friendly. The thick rubber latches are slightly more challenging to operate with a single hand than some of its competitors. But the Orca does have one of the easier drains to use, with a sloping channel that facilitates a complete water exodus, rather than blocking it with an ill-placed ledge leading up to the drain, as several others do.


The lid opens past a 90-degree angle and stays open throughout the entire packing process. We were pleased with how easy it was to dump in the ice and pack up for a picnic. It also includes an exterior mesh pocket to hold loose, non-refrigerated snacks.

orca 58 quart - the orca 58 has a mesh pocket that is great for holding onto...
The Orca 58 has a mesh pocket that is great for holding onto miscellaneous items or extra non-perishable snacks.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Our biggest complaint about the usability of the Orca has to do with its size. As a tall, narrow model, it's all too easy to lose items in the bottom of the cooler underneath layers of other food and ice. This translates into more time spent with the lid open searching for that last craft beer or the Dijon mustard you swore you brought with you. This is at least partially offset by the slightly smaller size of the Orca 58, but compared to the long, low profile of other models we tested, we certainly noticed the difference.

The whale-tail-shaped handles make sure to give this cooler a tight seal.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Portability


Tipping the scales at 30.5 pounds and with a measured capacity of about 56 quarts, the Orca is about average weight vs. capacity among the coolers we tested. Without wheels, this cooler isn't bound for portability magic. It's more narrow profile does facilitate a single person being more comfortable to carry it for short periods, and if it's not too full. However, this same taller profile also bumps uncomfortably against the knees and legs of some of our testers. Like several other coolers we reviewed, the Orca has a second set of handles for two people to better co-carry it from the car.


The handles are comfortable to hold onto, thanks to their grippy, padded design. When transporting the Orca around, we had no trouble with water splashing out due to its watertight gasket. We also tipped it on its side to see if it leaked. It had just a few drops of water escape, but nothing overwhelming. You can rest assured that you won't be returning to a mess in the event it gets knocked over while you're away from the campsite or car.

orca 58 quart - a narrower design helps make the orca more manageable for one person...
A narrower design helps make the Orca more manageable for one person to carry.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

Additional Features


The 58 has an exceptional and unique feature that we find quite handy — a large netted pocket on the back of the cooler. Though we don't think it's the best space for squishy objects like a loaf of bread or bag of chips, it works remarkably well to bring along spices for the barbecue, plates for the guests, or paper towels for clean-up. For us, we specifically had it hold onto our sandals as we towed it across the sandy beach. The Orca also has tie-down points on either end to secure your cooler in transit while still being able to open it and retrieve a refreshment or the next ingredient in your outdoor meal.


The Orca is available in a whopping nine color options. We recommend sticking with a lighter color to optimize its insulation performance. Though we didn't test them, the 58 is compatible with a handful of Orca-specific extras, such as a fishing rod holder, dry goods baskets, and locks. Should you need it, replacement parts are available through Orca.

orca 58 quart - stash some of your dry goods in the mesh pocket on the back.
Stash some of your dry goods in the mesh pocket on the back.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

Should You Buy the Orca 58?


In what sometimes feels like a sea of identical coolers all making fantastical claims, the Orca 58 Quart brings something a little different to the table. With great insulation and durable design, this handy model pulls it together in a slightly different shape than most of the competition. If this shape ticks the box for what you want, we think you'll be quite pleased with the performance of the compact Orca 58.

orca 58 quart - the orca keeps its drinks cooler for longer thanks to its rotomolded...
The Orca keeps its drinks cooler for longer thanks to its rotomolded body and gasket.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

What Other Coolers Should You Consider?


If you're not too concerned about how long your cooler keeps its items chilled but would prefer a budget-friendly option, the Coleman 316 is worth checking out. Across the board, it's not the most impressive, but it gets the job done for a quick trip. On the other hand, the Yeti Roadie 60 is a premium option that incorporates both great insulation and unbeatable portability. With its two burly wheels and retractable handle, it's capable of tackling almost any road ahead of it. If these options still don't appeal to you, see our review of coolers for more detailed analysis.

orca 58 quart - all of our coolers underwent head-to-head tests against the same...
All of our coolers underwent head-to-head tests against the same five performance metrics.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

Genaveve Bradshaw, Maggie Nichols, and Rebecca Glades