Rab Electron Pro Review
Compare prices at 2 resellers Pros: Harness friendly pockets, excellent warmth to weight ratio, highly packable, elastic wrist cuffs
Cons: Difficult to layer over
Manufacturer: Rab Equipment
Compare to Similar Products
Rab Electron Pro
|Price||$259.96 at Backcountry|
Compare at 2 sellers
|$243.74 at Backcountry|
Compare at 2 sellers
$359.00 at Amazon
|$209 List||$100 List|
$99.95 at REI
|Pros||Harness friendly pockets, excellent warmth to weight ratio, highly packable, elastic wrist cuffs||Incredibly light, compact, warm for its size and weight, effective hydrophobic down||Lightweight, stylish, high warmth to weight ratio||Inexpensive, fully featured adjustability||Inexpensive, lightweight|
|Cons||Difficult to layer over||No hood cinch, no chest pocket||Expensive, not super durable||Moderate warmth, noisy material, no internal zip pockets||Minimal features, boxy fit|
|Bottom Line||Packs down small and brings a ton of warmth, making it a great layer for climbing and other mountain pursuits||Offers high versatility, comfort, accommodation of movement, and light weight||If you are looking for a warm, light layer for a trip where ounces count, this is a great selection||This down offers the warmth and quality of more premium choices at an approachable price point||This is an inexpensive jacket that is ideal for casual hiking and wearing around town|
|Rating Categories||Rab Electron Pro||Mountain Hardwear G...||Arc'teryx Cerium SL...||MontBell Superior Down||REI Co-op 650 Down...|
|Water Resistance (15%)|
|Specs||Rab Electron Pro||Mountain Hardwear G...||Arc'teryx Cerium SL...||MontBell Superior Down||REI Co-op 650 Down...|
|Down Fill||800 fill power down||800 fill RDS certified, down insulation||850 fill goose down||800 fill goose down||650 fill power down|
|Total Weight||17.25 oz||8.5 oz||7.6 oz||8.7 oz||10.44 oz|
|Baffle Construction||Sewn-through baffles||Sewn-through baffles||Sewn-through||Sewn-through baffles||Sewn-through baffles|
|Main Fabric||Pertex Quantum Pro||Recycled polyester ripstop, DWR finish||Arato 7 nylon||10 denier ballistic airlight nylon||Recycled nylon taffeta|
|Compression Method||Stuff sack||Zips into pocket||Included stuff sack||Stuff sack||Stuffs into pocket|
|Pockets||2 zippered hand, 1 zippered internal chest||2 zippered hand||2 zippered hand||2 zippered hand||2 hand|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Rab Electron Pro is a warm and feature-heavy option designed to combat the cold and wind. While it’s not necessarily a jacket we’d want to clip to our harness and climb with, it’s absolutely a coat we’d throw in a pack when we knew we were in for long cold belays or to wear around camp while backpacking.
The Electron Pro is one of the warmest jackets we tested this season. Purpose-built for wintertime activities like alpine climbing and skiing, it's also comfortable and warm for use around town, or on a cold-weather hike. The 800 fill down used in this medium bordering on heavyweight coat accomplishes its goal. Constructed with zoned midi and micro baffle stitching, this jacket is less bulky than other comparable down jackets and has fewer cold spots due to the stitching.
While the surplus of warmth is ideal for truly cold days or putting on between activities, this coat might be too much for summer and spring missions in the mountains.
With a size medium weighing in at 17.25 ounces, this jacket was the second heaviest in our test group. That being said, it was also one of the warmest. When you consider the warmth provided by this jacket, our testers felt it was surprisingly lightweight. Its light weight makes it comfortable to wear, and it will keep you surprisingly toasty. This jacket makes an excellent belay coat, given its weight to warmth ratio. It’s not too heavy to schlep out to the crag but it is plenty warm when standing still for long interrupted periods. By the same token, this jacket is great for layering up while ski touring. The weight of this jacket didn’t discourage our testers from packing this coat along for just about any adventure, as long as weight wasn’t an absolutely critical factor.
The Electron is perhaps a little too heavy for ultralight backpacking missions or multi-pitch rock climbing. The bulk and weight of this down was cumbersome when clipped to a harness and probably overkill. If you’re ice or alpine climbing, however, this down will be just right.
As with most down jackets, the Electron has its limitations when it comes to water resistance. The outer shell is coated with a DWR (durable water repellent) finish, and the 800 fill down has been treated with Nikwax to help make sure it stays lofted even when it gets a little moist. These waterproofing measures make it suitable for light rain, or even a short period in more substantially wet weather.
But, do not consider the Electron a replacement for a good rain jacket. It performs well compared to other down jackets, but none of the down jackets we tested are suitable for extended use in wet weather without a proper rain layer on top. On the technical side, it makes it a great wintertime insulation layer when you might be dealing with dripping ice and small amounts of snowmelt.
Our testers thoroughly enjoyed the fit of this jacket. Given its warmth and weight, we were expecting it to be a whole heck of a lot bulkier. The jacket has a somewhat long-waist hem which gives you maximum coverage and insulating abilities all the way down to your butt. The arms and wrist hems are long enough to give you full coverage but not comically long enough to cover your hands. This coat comfortably accommodates a base and mid-layer underneath; we’d go as far as saying that this jacket has an athletic cut. With a bit of taper towards the waist, this jacket doesn’t just turn you into a big square blob as some heavy puffys do.
Designed primarily for cold and dry conditions, this jacket works great with a base and mid-layer underneath; however, if you need to put a rain layer on top, things start to feel pretty bunchy and your mobility starts to become impaired significantly.
Compared to the entire field of down jackets we tested, the Electron doesn’t compress down into the smallest package. It’s by no means an“ultralight” jacket and takes up a noticeable amount of space. That being said, all of the options that pack down smaller don’t even come close to providing the same amount of warmth. This jacket is built to stand up to seriously cold weather. When you’re going out in extreme conditions, your gear will almost always be heavier and take up more space.
This jacket has just the right amount of features to be useful without them starting to feel superfluous or gimmicky. The partially elastic writs cuffs keep the wind out and gloves tucked safely inside.
The brimmed hood helps keep the hood from covering your eyes and helps light precipitation bead away from your face. This coat has two external zippered hand pockets that sit high enough to still be accessible while you are wearing a harness. It has one internal zip chest pocket that easily fits a large smartphone and wallet. The upper portion of the zipper that touches your face when fully zipped is fleece-lined for comfort. The waist hem is equipped with cinchable drawstrings, and the hood is minorly adjustable via a small piece of velcro.
For a jacket of this weight, we would have liked to have seen some internal drop pockets. Drop pockets are great for keeping gloves, skins, and even climbing shoes warm and dry when the conditions get nasty.
The Electron is a top-tier product that comes with a premium price tag attached. It’s not the most expensive jacket we tested but is no doubt pricy. While it’s not always true, we have found that you really do get what you pay for when it comes to down jackets. Our testers found this jacket to provide consumers with a good value. The warmth, fit, and overall quality of this jacket justify the price tag. It’s priced similarly to comparable models from other top-selling brands.
The Rab Electron Pro is a high-quality jacket built for cold-weather adventures in the mountains. Featuring 800 fill hydrophobic treated down, this is one of the more water-resistant downs we tested. Sporting useful but not over the top features, this jacket will meet the needs of skiers, climbers, and backpackers looking for extra warmth without overloading their packs in relation to space or weight.
— Buck Yedor
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