Hands-on Gear Review

Outdoor Research Tantrum II - Women's Review

The Tantrum has a unique carrying system that made it our favorite piece for running.
By: Shey Kiester ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Apr 6, 2018
Price:  $109 List  |  $63.34 at Amazon - 42% Off
Pros:  Good wind resistance, interesting feature set, soft fabric feel
Cons:  Waist belt can feel bulky when jacket is in use, lacks DWR finish
Manufacturer:   Outdoor Research
67
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#6 of 8
  • Wind Resistance - 20% 8
  • Breathability - 20% 7
  • Durability - 20% 7
  • Weight and Packability - 20% 6
  • Versatility - 10% 6
  • Water Resistance - 10% 5

Our Verdict

The Outdoor Research Tantrum II links wind resistance with breathability admirably, and it has a feature set that allows it to be easily carried even when you don't have a harness or backpack. Because of this, we liked the Tantrum best for runs when we expected a few gusts along ridgetops. However, this piece lacks a DWR finish, so if you're expecting light precip, as well as wind, this is not the best piece for you.

New Version
Outdoor Research has released the Tantrum II! Read on to find out how this wind jacket has changed.


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Our Analysis and Test Results

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The Outdoor Research Tantrum II vs. the Tantrum


Outdoor Research made some changes to their classic lightweight wind jacket, exchanging their integrated waist-belt carrying option for a pocket stuff sack with a clip-in loop. They also changed up the seams and color offerings. See the Tantrum II on the left below, followed by the OG Tantrum on the right.

  • Seam changes — OR has nixed the seam lines across the torso of this new version for a cleaner, sleeker look.
  • No more integrated waist belt — It looks as though OR has dropped the lower back pocket stuff sack and integrated waist belt in favor of a…
  • Chest pocket with clip-in loop — The chest pocket now doubles as a stuff sack with a clip-in loop. There is also now a storm flap over the chest pocket zipper.
  • New colors — The Tantrum II is offered in 4 new shades, like the light teal shown above.

As we haven't tested out this new version, the review that follows refers to the original Outdoor Research Tantrum.

Hands-On Review of the Outdoor Research Tantrum


The OR Tantrum is made of a 100% nylon 20D mechanical stretch ripstop fabric and does not have a DWR (durable water repellent) finish. There are one external chest pocket and a lower back pocket that the jacket stows into with a clipable belt loop for clipping it onto your waist. It weighs 4.6 ounces and comes in a few different colors.

The Tantrum was right in the middle of the pack in most of scoring metrics, and our reviewers found that its unique feature set detracted from its performance when hiking with a pack or climbing with a harness, but made it perfect for running.

Value


At $109, the Tantrum is one of the least expensive models in our review. With a relatively durable build, this jacket is an excellent choice for runners, who are less likely to abrade the material, thus getting more life out of the jacket for their money.

This model had one of our favorite fits in the review field.
This model had one of our favorite fits in the review field.

Wind Resistance


The Tantrum's nylon fabric held out the wind well, keeping our testers draft free in moderate winds. The zipper flap keeps drafts from coming in the front, and the well-fitting hood allowed our reviewers to seal out drafts. However, on super blustery days, the light fabric didn't feel quite bulky enough to take on the drafts. Models like the Patagonia Houdini and Arc'teryx Squamish performed better in this category.

This model works well as part of a layering system or when used alone.
This model works well as part of a layering system or when used alone.

Breathability


Because of its light material, the Tantrum sacrificed some wind resistance for a more breathable build. We noticed that this model was not likely to build up perspiration on the inside, like the Eddie Bauer Uplift, but it did become slightly damp during high-energy activity, much like the Black Diamond Alpine Start.

This piece is a good choice for almost any activity.
This piece is a good choice for almost any activity.

Durability


None of the contenders in our fleet showed extensive wear during testing. However, our testers identified jackets that were likely to experience problems because of abrasion or material breakdown. The Tantrum has relatively few added features that add to the chances of something on the jacket breaking, but its thin material makes it more likely to become caught in the zipper of a layer. For a more durable piece, we liked the Patagonia Houdini.

A good design allows this jacket to look as good as it performs.
A good design allows this jacket to look as good as it performs.

Weight and Packability


The Tantrum presented an interesting conundrum in this category. At 4.6 ounces, it was on the lighter end of our test group, and it packs into a tight package. Instead of a harness clip loop that was seen on every single other model in our tests, the Tantrum features a belt that clips around the user's waist when the jacket is stowed. When not stowed, the jacket is stored in the pocket at the lower back. This belt is somewhat bulky and is uncomfortable with a harness or backpack. For this reason, we felt that models like the Patagonia Houdini or Eddie Bauer Uplift that featured a tighter packing system and a harness clip were better performers in this category.

A closer look of this model's carrying system  which could be a plus for runners.
A closer look of this model's carrying system, which could be a plus for runners.

Versatility


The Tantrum's unique waist belt, which allows the wearer to clip it around their waist when stowed, earned the Tantrum lower scores in the versatility metric. Although this belt system was pretty incredible while running, it proved to be annoying on climbing or backpacking trips, as the belt itself would become uncomfortable under a harness or backpack. For a more versatile windbreaker, consider the Black Diamond Alpine Start or Rab Windveil.

The jacket's packed size
The jacket's packed size

Water Resistance


The Tantrum is one of only three jackets in our review that does not feature a DWR (durable water repellent) finish. As a result, it did not score high in the water resistance category. This jacket quickly became saturated in light precip. However, because of its lightweight fabric, it also dried relatively quickly. If you don't expect precip, it is still a good choice for you; but, since wind is often accompanied by rain, you might consider a piece like the Patagonia Houdini or Arc'teryx Squamish, which both feature DWR.

This piece lacks a DWR finish  and it won't handle light precip as well as a jacket that does boast DWR.
This piece lacks a DWR finish, and it won't handle light precip as well as a jacket that does boast DWR.

Best Applications


The Tantrum was by far the best jacket for running, with a wind resistant yet breathable design and a unique waist belt carrying system. This makes this jacket, not as ideal for roped climbing or hiking with a backpack.

Conclusion


With a unique design that makes this jacket best-suited to runners, the OR Tantrum was breathable and wind resistant enough to allow it to perform well on a quick ridge run or single track jog.

Shey Kiester

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