Marmot Quasar Hoody — ultralight down
Dec 2, 2013 at 11:06 pm #1310521
Just got a new jacket…
I like to be prepared when I hike and that includes having an "emergency" jacket in my pack even on nice fall days. It often could be in the 30s or 40s after sunset and I feel like I should have a "what if I sprain my ankle" jacket, even though I know I'm not going to wear it 99% of the time. Like a rain jacket. You'd feel pretty stupid the one time you need it after leaving it in the car.
For winter snowshoeing, I dress "light" so I don't sweat, but need a warm hoody to put on immediately when stopping at a summit or in the wind.
I've been in a quandry. My solutions to both problems took up a lot of pack space. A fleece or a thermal lined soft shell both pack large for an emergency layer. And the heavy 650 fill down hoody for winter use also packs big. I have a Marmot Zeus 800 fill jacket (like the Patagonia down sweater) that I wear all the time. Great around town/car jacket for dry winter days. But, without a hood, it's not ideal for hiking purposes.
So, I've been waiting for a sale on the new Marmot Quasar Down Hoody. I don't think Marmot stuff is any better or worse than other brands, but I am confident in the fit of their clothes, so it's an easy choice.
It's a Pertex Quantum GL 10D nylon ripstop shell (inside and outside). Sewn through baffles. 900 fill goose down. Three pockets, two hand pockets and an outside chest pocket. Two drawcord tighteners at the hem. Form fitting hood with elastic to keep it tight, plus a drawcord tightener from the back to cinch it tight. Elastic at the cuffs. No inside pockets. Stuffs into one of the pockets (a thin rectangular shape).
Specs at the Marmot website are wrong. They list it at 13 ounces, but a Men's Medium actually measures 10.7 ounces on my digital kitchen scale.
I'm 165 pounds. The Medium fits a little loose over a t-shirt. Fits trim over PowerStretch fleece. Works great as a mid-layer under a GoreTex ski shell (If I'm ever cold enough to wear that combo). Or, I can wear it with Marmot Essence ultra-light rain hoody for a full waterproof "winter parka" combo weighing less than 17 ounces.
The price makes it hard to pull the trigger on these ultra-light down hoodies, but this is a really nice product that is going to live in my pack six to nine months a year. Because it packs so small, I can carry it even when I'm still using the small summer day pack in the fall.Dec 3, 2013 at 8:13 am #2050299greg cMember
Looks like a perfect jacket for your intended use. I'm currently in the market for a down hoody for snow camping. I was unaware that Marmot offered a hooded, lightweight down jacket. I too have the Zeus and have been pleased with its quality. Do you have any idea what the total fill weight is on the Quasar? I'm trying to gauge its warmth.
Currently I'm looking at the WM Flash XR and the Montbell Mirage. Both are a little pricier than I like so the Marmot may be the winner. Enjoy the new jacket and thanks for sharing your impressions.
GregDec 3, 2013 at 11:13 am #2050367
In their product Q&A, Campsaver says the non-hoody version of the Quasar has 150 grams (5.3 ounces) of 900 fill down. I have no idea where they got that number, but it seems about right. Comparing it to the Patagonia ultralight (3.5 ounces of down), it looks like the Marmot is probably a little puffier.
It's little hard to compare to the Zeus, because the Zeus has wide down channels (like the Patagonia Hi-Loft Down Sweater, where the Quasar has narrow channels. However, they seem like they are probably similar from an overall puffy insulation warmth standpoint. Neither is an expedition weight down parka. That's OK with me. I have a heavier down jacket, but I find that the Zeus warmth jacket is what I tend to wear, especially when I'm already wearing a light fleece layer. I'm not doing hardcore winter mountaineering. I did check, though. The Quasar hoody does fit under my heavier 650-fill down hoody. That combo has got to be insanely warm….
The big difference, compared to the Zeus, is that the Zeus has 1.2 ounce (unfinished) polyester shell material. The Quasar has 0.8 ounce (unfinished) Pertex Quantum GL nylon fabric. This Pertex GL is amazing thin. You can see through it if you hold it up to the light. It's shinier and slicker compared to the polyester of the Zeus which is a softer fabric.
The Quasar hoody weighs 10.7 ounces compared to my men's MED Zeus (no hood) at 14.6 ounces. They both stuff into a pocket. The stuffed Quasar stuffs into a rectangular pillow about 2/3rds the size of the Zeus, so it's significantly smaller and lighter than the Zeus. I don't know if the difference between 800 fill down and 900 fill down amounts to much in the real world. Maybe that's part of it, but I think it's mostly the fabric.
Here's a link to a pretty good video that shows the jacket and shows the stuff size, although the video uses the stated 13 oz weight, not the 10.7 ounce mine actually weighs:Dec 3, 2013 at 11:39 am #2050382Max DiltheySpectator
I'm not alone in the sentiment, but my distrust of Marmot after shoddy workmanship left me with uselessly torn rain jackets and delaminating seam tape in conditions where I needed a reliable coat makes me hesitant to pick up anything from them in the future.Dec 3, 2013 at 1:10 pm #2050419
There is no seam tape on the Quasar Hoody. It's not intended to be waterproof.
Personally, I would not wear a Pertex GL jacket for bushwhacking. These 10D nylon fabrics are definitely not "burly"Dec 3, 2013 at 1:44 pm #2050428Max DiltheySpectator
Oh yeah, what I mean is, if their rain jackets failed so spectacularly I have little faith in the company.Dec 3, 2013 at 1:48 pm #2050431Trill DaddyBPL Member
I was checking out the Quasar the other day. Even with 20% off, I thought it was pretty darn pricey.
Personally, I really like most things Marmot makes. They have a real gift when it comes to down products compared to other corporate manufacturers- just look at their sleeping bags.
Very interested to see if the jacket actually has 5.3oz of down- that's equivalent to the Hi loft Down hoody by patagonia and others.
How do you like the elastic hood? I have mixed feelings about these… one of the reasons I went with the Patagonia UL hoody over other options. WISH I would have waited for this thing.
Other than fit, I don't see any reason to get Patagonia UL over this thing
btw, Greg- I have a Mirage for sale on Gear Swap :)Dec 3, 2013 at 3:08 pm #2050460Rick MBPL Member
delDec 3, 2013 at 3:26 pm #2050468
>> Oh yeah, what I mean is, if their rain jackets failed so spectacularly I have little faith in the company.
If you read the customer reviews of rain jackets that have sold high volumes over the years, I don't think you'll find a brand that has escaped some coating delamination issues. It's kind of the nature of the evolving technology. Name a brand, and I bet you can find people who had waterproof coatings fail.
The way I look at it, any waterproof coating/lamination short of 3-layer GoreTex Pro is probably going to fail at some point. I haven't had that happen to any of my Marmot stuff, but if it does, I'll send it back and probably get a new one.
But, I'm sure all of us have a positive or negative experience with a particular brand that shapes future purchases. For example, I have a Marmot Pinnacle down sleeping bag that I've had for nearly 25 years that has been an absolutely superb product. If you've had a bad experience with on brand, it makes perfect sense to gravitate towards a difference brand… or vice versa.
I don't think there's any difference in inherent quality in any of the comparably priced brands. The stuff is all made in the same factories. YKK zippers are YKK zippers. Pertex Quantum GL is Pertex Quantum GL. 850 or 900 fill romanian goose down is 850 or 900 fill romanian goose down.Dec 3, 2013 at 3:38 pm #2050477James holdenBPL Member
marmot seems to have more issues of delamination than any other brand … including some from BPL members …
in some cases they make the customer happy, in others they dont
any brand can and will delaminate …rain jackets are the one area where i absolutely recommend buying from a place with a no questions asked guarantee … as you can use it minimally for 3-4 years, itll go poof … and some companies may claim that you go the "usable" lifetime out of it …
with OR, MEC, EB, etc … you dont need to worry …
also a note on goretex … with gore you have an additional option where they may cover it as well
a quick search shows …. and these are only a few examples … theres tons more …
Thought this would be a good jacket for cycle touring. I was wrong.
After less than a year the lining delaminated and disintegrated, and one of the zips broke. Marmot refused to repair/replace it under warranty.
Avoid Marmot MemBrain jackets.
"I drooled over the Marmot Crystalline (women's version of the Mica) for months and finally picked one up in September 2012. At first I was in love with the light weight and low bulk. And then, after two months, the inner layer started peeling away from the outer layer, causing some serious seepage. This is not a pleasant surprise when hiking through an all-day downpour in November!
Now, I'm used to WPB shells delaminating…after a few years of use! For a jacket to survive only two months (and go through only two legitimate rainstorms) is pretty disappointing. "
I took the Super Mica backpacking on Camel's Hump as a windshirt, and as an outer layer during high-intensity hiking. While in my sleeping bag- NOT while hiking- a long piece of seam tape detached from the inner lining all at once. I put it in my pack, planning to use it as evidence to return it.
The next night, while I was very gently (trust me) wiggling out of the jacket in my sleeping bag, the entire back seam from shoulderblade to shoulderblade tore like paper. This was a different seam from the tape incident, and it was right along the seam the entire way.
I've been babying this jacket, never washed it, used only a handful of times. Think, there's only been three rainstorms since August where I've been outside a lot, so less than 10 uses. It really disintegrated.
In the fall of 2010, I took the Mica along with me for a through hike of the Grand Enchantment Trail. I used it every day, swore it was the perfect jacket, and found it cheaply online to boot. At the end of the trip I noticed it was starting to delam badly, so sent it into Marmot to see if they'd hook me up with a replacement. No deal. I had washed the jacket a couple of times (i think…) on the trip to help with grime-causing delam, but still delamination occured. I know that delam can happen with most jackets, but I was annoyed at the time.
I got two jackets from marmot the Precip and the driclime windshirt The precip i try out three time in the rain it allready lost it DWR coating. I try on the driclime size large the body is to tight and the arms are way to long any jackets i own are size large they fit fine. i have call them four time so far they said to send the Precip and they would check it out and try to get it back to in 7 to 8 weeks the Driclime same thing. Got to talk to someone early in cust. care i could not belive she try to talk me in to buying some new jackets instead of replacing these. Never again will i ever buy Marmot stuff again.
Have any of you guys had this kind of thing happing with these marmot jackets.
I have a Marmot Essence jacket about 3-4 years old that sees minimal use (12 days a year I wear it). It started delaminating last week. Looks like I'm SOL.
few years ago I went through two Marmot rain jackets with PU coatings (first a precip then a better $200 one, can't remember the name) in less than 6 months, wearing it only occasionally during morning bus commute if it was raining (so maybe 3 times a week, no heavy pack or sustained walking) and both jackets began delaminating all over the place and essentially ballooning between the fabric and the laminate (like a bubble in pizza dough when baking).
;)Dec 3, 2013 at 3:45 pm #2050484
I like the elastic hood. I've got this arrangement on a couple of jackets and, if a helmet is not an issue (which it's not for me), the tighter/trimmer fit seems to work better than the big draw cord hoods. The tensioner from the back is a nice addition as you can cinch it down really tight.
>> I was checking out the Quasar the other day. Even with 20% off, I thought it was pretty darn pricey.
I got it for 25% off — $244. Still expensive as heck. No question. One of the major online retailers has the black one for $220. Unfortunately, I'm not that fond of shiny black nylon jackets…
As for the GoLite. Yeah, $200 is cheaper than $240. But, for something as expensive as an ultralight down jacket, I don't think a $40 premium is that bad for brand that I'm pretty confident will still be around in 10 years if I have a problem. Plus, it's a matter of taste, but that Bitterroot jacket looks butt ugly to me. I don't like the busy quilting pattern.
As for down fill, my "eyeball" says the Marmot has more "puff" than the Patagonia Ultralight hoody and less "puff" than the GoLite Bitteroot.Dec 3, 2013 at 3:59 pm #2050491Ryan SmithBPL Member
@violentgreenLocale: East TN
I think at $240 the Quasar is a better choice than the Bitterroot for what you are looking for. $325 – probably not. The Golite has a hood that is pretty useless unless you are wearing a helmet from what I have read, although DWR treated down is a plus. Let us know how it works for you.
RyanDec 3, 2013 at 4:44 pm #2050511
I figure that all the down I own will be DWR treated the first time I wash it and restore the DWR with Nikwax wash-in treatment. I know they want us to believe that the down treatment is some kind of special unobtanium DWR, but I have my doubts. Water-based DWR, by any other name, is still water-based DWR.
But, in general, I wouldn't pick down for a rainy day, treated or not. I've got a synthetic puffy layer I'd take for rain. Frankly, if it's raining, it's probably too warm for any of these layers. Down makes sense on dry cold days. With fresh DWR, maybe a light snow flurry.
So far, I've never been cold enough to actually hike and sweat in a puffy layer.May 22, 2017 at 2:44 pm #3469186Bill BBPL Member
Was actually looking into this jacket on closeout, and wanted to revive this thread for those seeking info on the jacket. After striking out online, I talked with a Marmot rep who clarified that the mens Quasar Hoody contains 85g (3.0oz) of fill. The jacket was originally 900fp down (style numbers that start with “E” or before, then switched to 850fp (style numbers starting with “F” or later).May 23, 2017 at 5:22 am #3469324Jeff McWilliamsBPL Member
Geeze are they sure it only has 3.0oz of 850fp down? The total weight of the hooded jacket is 13 oz.
For comparison, the Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer with Hood, I have in my notes as 2.8oz 850fp down, total weight = 8oz.
The Quasar uses 10d Pertex Quantum. The Ghost Whisperer uses 10D on the outer and 7D on the inner. For the the Quasar to have almost the same amount of down fill as the Ghost Whisperer but come in as 5 oz heavier seems unfortunate.May 25, 2017 at 7:36 pm #3469844Bill BBPL Member
Jeff, the published weight is apparently wrong too (as several of the online reviews mentioned). Just picked up a 900fp Quasar hoody and it weighs 10.8oz on my scale…
I looked at the Ghost Whisperer hoody first, but the fit didn’t work for me (the small was tight but the medium too loose). Ended up with the Quasar as a slightly heavier but much more affordable alternative (on clearance). The 900fp in the Quasar vs the 800fp in the GW was a nice bonus, but I do wish it was a touch lighter. Now to get it out and see how it performs!May 25, 2017 at 7:51 pm #3469845Jeff McWilliamsBPL Member
Thanks for the update, Bill.
I’ll update my spreadsheet to say 3.0oz 900fp fill, 10.8oz total.Jun 9, 2017 at 5:30 am #3472424Don HBPL Member
The Marmot Quasar hoody XL with 900 fill that I have weighs 12.3 oz. The MH Ghost Whisperer hoody XL with 850 fill that I have weighs 8.9 oz. I can only say the Quasar is excellent quality and more robust & seems warmer than GW. If you can get either for the right price, you won’t regret it.
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