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Rab Neutrino 800 Review

A good choice for temps between 0 and 30F
Rab Neutrino 800
Photo: Backcountry
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Price:  $500 List | $499.95 at Amazon
Pros:  Good warm-to-weight ratio, very compressible
Cons:  Not as warm or as comfortable as the Kodiak
Manufacturer:   Rab
By Matt Bento ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Mar 31, 2019
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66
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#8 of 13
  • Warmth - 20% 7
  • Weight - 20% 7
  • Comfort - 20% 7
  • Packed Size - 15% 7
  • Features - 10% 6
  • Weather Resistance - 15% 5

Our Verdict

The Rab Neutrino 800 has a similar look and feel as the value-studded Rab Ascent 900, but it's warmer, lighter, more compressible and (you guessed it!) more expensive. While the Ascent series is geared towards affordability, the Neutrino is equipped to run with the big dogs, offering performance closer to top-shelf offerings from Western Mountaineering, Feathered Friends, and Big Agnes, at a relatively friendly price. This bag uses 800 fill power goose down and Pertex Quantum on the exterior and the interior to keep the weight low and the warmth and compressibility factors high.

Product Updates

Rab updated the Neutrino 800. The new bag is a dark yellow and retails for $500, which is a full $70 cheaper than the version we tested! It still contains 28 oz of 800 fill power responsibly sourced down and utilizes Pertex Quantum fabric for the shell. We link to the updated bag above.

March 2019

Compare to Similar Products

 
Rab Neutrino 800
This Product
Rab Neutrino 800
Awards  Editors' Choice Award Editors' Choice Award  Top Pick Award 
Price $499.95 at Amazon$710.00 at Backcountry$619.95 at Backcountry$619.00 at Feathered Friends$499.95 at Amazon
Compare at 2 sellers
Overall Score Sort Icon
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Star Rating
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Pros Good warm-to-weight ratio, very compressibleWarm, awesome comfort, great warmth to weight ratioOne of the warmest bags in the test, excellent color schemeWarm, highly weather resistantComfortable, spacious, lightweight, elasticized baffles allow you to sit cross legged
Cons Not as warm or as comfortable as the KodiakExpensiveLack of hydrophobic down, missing top hood cinchSmall hood, tight cutSignificantly less warm than similarly rated bag, enormous footbox, vents
Bottom Line This bag offers decent warmth and weight for $100 less than the top performersThe Kodiak is the cream of the crop when it comes to loft and comfortWithout hydrophobic down, this one earns a top score among our test bagsThis bag has a weight saving fitted cut and is great for alpine missions when you'll encounter wet snowLoaded with features, this bag is great for those looking for a little luxury in the backcountry
Rating Categories Rab Neutrino 800 Kodiak MF Mountain Hardwear Phantom 0 Feathered Friends Snowbunting NEMO Sonic 0
Warmth (20%)
7
8
8
8
6
Weight (20%)
7
7
8
7
6
Comfort (20%)
7
8
8
6
9
Packed Size (15%)
7
7
5
7
6
Features (10%)
6
7
8
6
9
Weather Resistance (15%)
5
7
6
9
7
Specs Rab Neutrino 800 Kodiak MF Mountain Hardwear... Feathered Friends... NEMO Sonic 0
Measured Weight (lbs, size Regular) 2.85 lbs 2.85 lbs 2.68 lbs 2.85 lbs 2.95 lbs
Fill Weight (oz) 28 oz 30 oz 29.6 oz 25.3 oz 24 oz
Type of Down Fill European Goose Down Goose Down Goose Down RDS Cert/Fluorine Free Goose Down Down
Fill Power 800 850 850 900 800
Material Weight (excludes down, oz) 17.65 oz 15.65 oz 13.28 oz 20.3 oz 23.3 oz
Temperature Rating -4°F 0°F 0°F 0°F 0°F
Pocket Yes No Yes No Yes
Shoulder Girth (inches) 59" 66" 58" 60" 61"
Hip Girth (inches) 51" 57" 52" 56" 58"
Foot Girth (inches) 49" 41" Not listed 38" 53"
Shell Material Pertex Quantum MicroLite XP 10D nylon Ghost ripstop, DWR finish Pertex Shield EX 20D nylon ripstop, DWR treatment
Continuous Baffle Yes Yes No Yes Yes

Our Analysis and Test Results

Performance Comparison


After sitting out for around 15 minutes, this bag has an impressive...
After sitting out for around 15 minutes, this bag has an impressive amount of loft.
Photo: Matt Bento

Warmth


Rab gives the Neutrino 800 a lower limit of -4F. While local temps didn't dip below zero during our testing period, we suspect we'd be pretty uncomfortable at that temperature, and would probably want an additional down puffy jacket and booties around 0.
This bag isn't as warm as the similarly rated Western Mountaineering...
This bag isn't as warm as the similarly rated Western Mountaineering Kodiak, but it is less expensive than our Editor's Choice Award winner.
Photo: Matt Bento

Weight


The Rab Neutrino 800 weighs 45.65 oz or 2.85 lbs according to our scales, which happen to be the exact same weight as our Editors' Choice Award winner, the Western Mountaineering Kodiak MF. However, the Kodiak is warmer, uses higher quality down, and has a roomier cut, which makes it more comfortable. Because the Kodiak uses lighter materials and better down, it has a better warmth-to-weight ratio. The Neutrino has a good warmth-to-weight ratio just not as good as the top-performing bags. It's worth noting that the Neutrino costs significantly less than most of these bags.

This bag weighs 45.6 oz after you subtract the weight of our stuff...
This bag weighs 45.6 oz after you subtract the weight of our stuff sack.
Photo: Matt Bento

Comfort


The Neutrino 800 feels much wider than its measurements suggests because it's less tapered than some of the other bags with similar measurements. The slight taper makes for plenty of room to roll around if you're a smaller person. Extra room in a sleeping bag will let you sleep in a variety of positions, but remember that extra room equates to uninsulated dead space, so when it's really cold you should fill that space with extra clothes and puffy jackets. The extra room makes this bag a less efficient insulator and not the top choice for ounce-counters who are trying to move fast in the backcountry. It does make this bag a better choice for base camping and long trips where you'll be spending a lot of time in your bag.

The elastic drawstrings are very stretchy, leaving lots of slack...
The elastic drawstrings are very stretchy, leaving lots of slack dangling inside the bag when you cinch the hood down tight.
Photo: Matt Bento

Packed Size


This bag is very compressible for its warmth. It comes with what's described as a "dry bag compression stuff sack," but the sack doesn't have any actual compression straps. We packed it into the same compression sack that we used with the warmer bags, and the Neutrino packs away slightly smaller than these bags.

For it's warmth, this is an exceptionally compressable sleeping bag.
For it's warmth, this is an exceptionally compressable sleeping bag.
Photo: Matt Bento

Weather Resistance


This bag features down that has a Nikwax hydrophobic treatment to help the down maintain some of its loft if it gets weight and speeds up the bag's drying time. We aren't ripping open these $500+ sleeping bags and looking at the down, so we're not sure how much weather resistance we can really attribute to the Nikwax treatment. What we can see is how well water beads up on the shell fabric and how long it takes to wet out, and the Pertex shell fabric does a fine job of repelling light mist and melting frost, but we don't recommend sleeping in this bag while exposed in a heavy rainstorm.

A Pertex Quantum shell is our first defense against moisture, with...
A Pertex Quantum shell is our first defense against moisture, with Nikwax Hydrophobic down for back up.
Photo: Matt Bento

Features


We like the Neutrino's small zippered internal pocket that will keep your phone, headlamp, and a few camera batteries warm, dry, and easily accessible while you sleep. We don't like this bag's hood and collar cinch cords. They are elastic and are very long, so when we tightened the cords to snug the hood around our faces, it left long loops of slack that hang uncomfortably in the bag. The extra slack issue can probably be solved with some careful aftermarket modification. The zipper snags a lot more than the zippers found on the Western Mountaineering bags.

A draft collar keeps out the drafts, with one cinch cord dedicated...
A draft collar keeps out the drafts, with one cinch cord dedicated for the collar, and another for the hood.
Photo: Matt Bento

Value


For the money, this bag is a good deal. It's over 150 dollars less than creme de la creme of bags and is pretty versatile because of its low weight and full-length zipper.

The toe box provides ample space for our testers boot liners. He...
The toe box provides ample space for our testers boot liners. He likes it.
Photo: Matt Bento

Conclusion


This bag isn't quite the screaming deal as its heavier and less expensive cousin, the Rab Accent 900. It does provide a less expensive option, with good performance, just a notch below the top performers in this review. If you want to save a hundred bucks or more and you'll be facing temps in the teens on your adventures this winter, you can expect to sleep comfortably in the Neutrino 800. It's a great bag, but there are a few higher-end models that outperform it.

Matt Bento