Could 2007 be the break-out year for eVent? eVent what you say? And that, my friends, is the problem. Most people have still never heard of eVent. Probably the same people that wonder why they always feel wet when they exercise in Goretex. And that's one of the big differences between the two. eVent lets moisture escape, Goretex doesn't. Not very well at least, though they claim it does. Maybe after you've heated yourself up enough to create a pressure difference to push the moisture out, but not before soaking you in sweat. You don't have to take my word on that, but you'd better believe the US Army. They never lie and they conducted extensive tests on fabric breathability and found this (right mouse click on PDF to download the study):
The US Army’s Natick tests of waterproof-breathable laminates
reported that eVENT fabric proved to be the most breathable
of all materials tested, averaging twice the breathability of
its closest competitor. Testing included the likes of Gore-Tex
XCR®, Sympatex®, and various other waterproof-breathable
fabrics. (source: FeedtheHabit)
But Goretex is a marketing machine and keeps everyone thinking it's the most breathable. Pro Shell is already being marketed as more breathable and lighter than XCR. Even if consumers knew the truth had enough information to make an informed decision, eVent still faces a huge uphill battle given Goretex's almost monopoly power in the industry. Try telling Goretex you're going to have an eVent jacket in your line. Just try. I dare you. That's why the two lists below are exclusive. But lets look at that list shall we? Old and stodgy versus young(ish), innovative and nimble perhaps? Westcomb won an Ispo, but I imagine it was more for the design and ipod controls than the use of eVent. But still, it's some momentum for eVent and Westcomb. Though if ArcTeryx is suing them again, it might be a setback. Here are some of the big contestants in the 07/08 battle royale. You know my take on the matter. Support the little guys on the right versus the corporation on the left.
The Brazilian Market is flooded with several Gore-tex products, almost no competitors whatsoever. I´ve been searching for Event equipment for a while now with no successes. Next time I travel abroad I buy myself a Montane or perhaps a Vaude Jacket, then let´s put it to test in the South American Environment.
Ah, so you've been drinking the General Electric koolaid. Pity the reality of eVent doesn't match up with the spewage. From all the hyperbole on the web, I was expecting the Westcomb jacket I've been wearing to seriously outperform the XCR shells. Not. So far, in the real world, I can't tell any significant difference. Apparently your friends in the military can't either since they haven't placed massive orders for outerwear with the stuff after several years on the market (or are you saying that Gore strong armed them too?). The new Pro shells really are lighter (in the better designs) but it's too early to say if they breathe better. Compared to eVent's parent company, Gore is the little guy so it's all relative.
Tom, thanks. 3 a.m. blogging. Forgot to change. UF, jesus, we thought you fell off a mountain somewhere. Good to know you're still alive. Good points. It's all hype if you ask me. I wear boiled leather and a wool sweater for everything I do. Just reporting the facts. If I can afford a new jacket someday, I'll let you know about eVent. Maybe the problem is you don't sweat UF? Exert yourself once in a while. And yeah, GE sucks you're right. Damned if you do, damned if you don't. I still say, support the little guys. So my point still stands.
I was surprised to see Pearl Izumi absent from your event list, I've got one of theirs and its been a good performer. After doublechecking their website, it looks like they've dumped their high end outwear completely.
Two interesting things. First Nextec didn't do so great in the lab breathability study, but they got a $220 million contract for their cloth for jackets and pants from the army in the last couple of weeks.
Second, Pearl Izumi uses Toray fabric almost exculsively, so their stuff is there.
Third, the other reason (other than your gore license) to not use eVent is that it is incredibly hard to use. They say it takes between 6 and 10 months to get production going...that's ridiculous! Evan over at Integral Designs told me it took him about seven months to get it working right.
Finally, what's that I see at the bottom / top of the pile? Hmm...It's cheap, it is not patented and it works better than all the rest? Could it be? And you can seam tape it without the trouble inherent with eVent?
Oh lord, please give me some expanded PTFE, my friends all have jackets from GE, oh lord, please send me expanded PTFE...
That's a very impassioned blog post! Unfortunately, passionate writing is harder to trust. I don't want a jacket that makes me feel good about supporting the little guy or throwing rocks at the corporate Goliath; I want a jacket that protects me from the elements. And breathes, because I put the thing to good use, but sweat easily going up hill.
My Arc’Teryx Pro-Shell jacket had a bit of a problem, and REI says they'll be happy to replace it, exchange it, or just give me a refund. The opportunity to try this eVent stuff is presenting itself. I think I'll pass ... I'm planning to get another Arc’Teryx with the new Pro-Shell. My experience with the jacket has been extremely positive, minus some early wear and tear:
Hiking up hill, in any weather, it breathes better than fleece. Cycling more than 10 miles, it breathes well enough to keep me comfortable. In high ( ~ 70 mph ) winds and sub-freezing temperatures, hiking at the feet of glaciers, the jacket keeps me comfortable. Standing in front of massive waterfalls, being sprayed, around the freezing point, the jacket keeps me dry.
If eVent really does perform better, it would be in my interest to try the stuff. I'm sure it's not your goal to help this photographer choose a jacket, at least not me in particular ( we've never met before, so don't take that as a slight - just reality ), but you would help your readers by digging up more or more convincing data than the army says so, and they've never been wrong before ... or the notion that I'm only happy with my Arc’Teryx because I don't "know the truth." In the absence of any convincing reason to try eVent, I'll be replacing my Pro-Shell jacket with another one just like it.
who the puck ever said ``the us us army dosn't lie``
what a genius, and there i was thinking they did. So there are arms
or mass destruction in irak.
And please who can really tell the difference in one or another membrane. get real all of you.
woow - louis - the US Army did not lie, the government did - learn the difference man - if the Army lied, they would have planted some weapons there.
Forrest - did you read the pdf file? It's not the army says so, it's the data in their test says so - maybe you are not science inclined but that test convinced me that at low humidities eVENT is 4 times better than GORE-TEX XCR, and higher humidites 2 time. LOOK AT THE PDF.
The difference between Goretex and eVent is that Goretex needs at thin coat of PU(like in a cheap raincoat) to stay waterproof otherwise its the same material(PTFE) eVent has just done somthing to its PTFE membrain so its oil contamination(if you sweat on PTFE then water can pass thru) proff unlike Gore's. This means that air can flow thru the eVent but not thru Goretex, its like a plastic bag in that regard, and people have died in Goretex bivys because of this. Goretex is offcause able to make water vapor pass thru the membrain by building up varmth preasure inside pushing the water out as molecules thru the PU. This is slower than the direct way thru the tiny holes in the eVent making eVent more breathable.
Personaly I would recomend that you don't buy either because when PTFE breaks down it can trun into PFOA which is very unhealthy for you and your sorundings.
All that I hear is a bunch of back and forth and no conclusive testing done in the field by anyone. Looks like Gearserious.com will have to go and do what no one else is doing and actually test the stuff before we open our jabber-jaw. We have an Arcteryx Alpha LT Set and a Westcomb Vapor FX Set on order and will be testing both sets during an mountain trip in Colorado in the coming 2 weeks. Check back in a month if you want the field testing about to be done on 2 of the most expensive waterproof "breathable" jacket/pant products out there.
All I want is a jacket that will keep the water out. I can control the mosture build up under the jacket by stripping off a layer or 2. I can always put them back on. I want a "WATERPROOF" jacket . One that "KEEPS OUT THE RAIN" not some fashion statement. I want to "STAY DRY". €400 hard and I "CANNOT" be guarenteed dry!!! and I am not talking about an everyday jacket. My 2 current GORETEX jackets are now permanently relegated to the status of urban rainwear and cannot be trusted on the hill.
PRO LITE vs E-VENT. Can someone tell it like it is. Forget the scientific bs and get some in the field reviews from reputable people.
Yes would would be angry at spending $400 on a jacket and being wet. I would avoid spending any more money as both of these materials will keep you wet. They have been marketed brilliantly as BREATHABLE but as some of us know there is no breathability. When it is cold or wet we experience condensation formation inside and these makes us feel as if the garment is not waterproof. The problem is these companies are allowed to make these claims based on a international breathability test standard which is completely flawed.
It tests these materials in completely DRY and hot conditions with outside temperatures of 35 degrees and inner temperatures of 35 degrees. These are purposefully set so it avoides condensation forming during test. BET THAT NEWS TO ALOT OF YOU. Yes believe it, these companies are testing their products in lab conditions comparible to the SAHARA desert. If you test these products in REAL conditions where we measure breathability in lower temperatures and in wet conditions you will have a result of no breathability. Basically buy a plastic bag, its cheaper and you will probably get just as wet in side as the Gore-tex or the Event but you will have more money in your pocket.
@Mick - any decent jacket should keep you dry. Most of what people argue about are the esoteric details, and which parka is best suited to which conditions. If it makes you feel better, I just took mine ( Arc'teryx with Pro Shell ) kayaking about 15 miles over salt water and crashing waves, without getting wet.
I tend to prefer eVent (like Forrest tend to prefer Gore-tex obviously).
Check the wikipedia page on Gore-Tex, there you can read:
"More recent fabrics such as eVent and Epic avoid the need for this inner PU coating and have been shown to have higher breathability as a result, while still being rainproof."
I didn't write it.
There's nothing esoteric about our arguments here but it's true that it can vary depending on the type of person (who take care or don't care when cleaning) and the weather (humidity, dirt).
With Goretex (even pro-shell and xcr), vapor goes out in 2 stages because it must go through PU coating.
GoreTex breathability factor varies with air humidity and rely on Durable Water Repellent (DWR) treatment on the surface (which goes off with time, wearing it and cleaning).
I found an updated version of the comparison including XCR, it's within a French article, but pictures are in English at the end: http://full-ops.com/fr/?c=info
I have both a Mountain Equipment Gore-Tex costing £240 and a Montane eVent costing £165 and the eVent is definitely more breathable, lighter weight, more flexible (which i feel is undervalued) and more comfortable. I think the Montane is also a better designed Jacket considering it is significantly cheaper.
The only thing the Gore-Tex has going for it is its probably more durable, which might explain why the army use it.
everybody seems so concerned about which is more breathable, i'm considerably more interested with durability. how many branches can i hit well skiing in the back country, or how many times can my ski edges rub against my jacket. pro shell feels alot stronger. what good is a breathable jacket with a tear in the side??
if you're interested in Event check out tadgear.com, they have a shell for 350.00 and it is top of the line. the raptor prolite shell is quite possibly the best Event shell on the market today. not only that they're also made in small batches in the US. check them out
Gore-Tex and eVent are nearly identical in breathability tests. Under IDEAL situations (zero % humidity) eVent does breath better. Under any situation that would actually warrant wearing a "rain jacket" they are completely identical in terms of breathability. As eVent is using Gore-Tex's 1960's technology, the durability of the laminate is much worse.
Furthermore, as far as David vs. Goliath, little guy vs. big guy... eVent (in case you didn't know) is owned by General Electric, probably one of the biggest corporations on the planet. You'd think with a corporation that big, they could have ripped off better technology.
The U.S. Army tests on breathability that everyone keeps bringing up... If they were so convinced why is the US government still ordering all their tech gear made of Gore-Tex?
Bottom Line, They both breath well. Initial waterproofness is nearly identical. Gore-Tex lasts MUCH longer. and if it ever failed, it's backed by their solid satisfaction guarantee unlike eVent.
I'm not bias, I'm just really not impressed by all the incorrect hype.
Am I Taking Crazy Pills?
I have been using Gore-tex for the past 20yrs and have not upgraded to the pro shell. Just before Thanksgiving, an REI employee convinced me to check out the REI Shuksan jacket. In the past, I recall going from pouring rain in Sacramento and back indoors where I would have to unzip the pits and front or take the jacket off completely because I would invariably overheat while walking around the store.
I have been urban testing the eVENT jacket and have felt a dramatic difference in the breathability. I can go from 40F to 70F environments and not even unzip main zipper (it only has core zips, no pit zips). So, I haven't used them under extreme aerobic conditions (cycling, running etc) but I have used them on 1 hr walks in 30-50F and indoors to 70F+ and do not feel the need to unzip the core or main zips.
The Gore-tex is definitely better than wearing PVC, but the eVENT is noticeably more breathable than Gore-tex (older stuff).
I bought the eVENT jacket on sale for $210. The comparable Gore-tex was $300+. I probably won't be using my gear in extreme weather.
The breathability of Gore tex fabric to me over my years of testing have proven to be really superior. And over the years gore tex has show to be the one to last forever. The breathability and the strength of fabric and the long lasting of water repellency has proven to be awesome. i love my gore tex.
1) Durability - Gore often puts multiple layers of product in their shells to enhance durability - this can affect both breathability and durability
2) inner and out lining of the jackets themselves (non Gore/eVent) can make a large difference in perceieved/actual breathability. Comparing Mountain Hardwear to Columbia to Arcteryx just isn't a good measure of the Gore/eVent product
3) does not appear as if they tested Gore Pro here
Personally I'll stick with the tried and true Gore products any day
These comments make me angry.
Gore-tex started making the same membrane as Event. The still do under the name Exchange lite Gore-tex. This is also air permeable like Event, but Gore only allows brands to make tents and bivak shelters of it and no clothing. This because it is venerable for fat and salt. When the patent of the first generation Gore-tex ended after 10 years, the manufacturer of Event copy'd it.
The Gore-tex used in clothing today has gone true a evaluation and has better RET lab tests than Event. If some fat from a tuna sandwich hits the Event you can not wash it out and the jacket stops breathing at that point.
So if you don't now the hole trued it's better to shut up.
Thanks from a pro
"Event is the same as original Gore-Tex."
True, to a point, both rely on an expended PTFE membrane as there primary waterproof layer, as do most good WPs, which was WL Gore's original patent. However Event brought something new to the game; micro-encapsulation made the original technology work less the monolithic PU layer.
"They have the same level of breathability under certain, real world conditions"
The US ANSR test show that while the two are far closer under certain conditions (low relative humidity & heat - say high, cold, alpine conditions) but never are the two close to equal. Event's performance, much like that of open textiles, in not significantly affected by differing atmosphereic conditions, the opposite is true of PU lined membranes.
"Gore-Tex has superior durability"
This quality is far more reliant on the strength of the face fabric & the backing web. The PU layer does add a degree of protection to Gore's products but this is not a difference that could not be "made up" by a thicker face fabric.
No one mentions maintenance, which is where Gore really scores; the performance of Event may be a factor better but it's a real primadonna of a membrane. You might need to wash your Gore-tex when it looks filthy & smells but Event will need washing once every, say, 20 outings, it is a complicated process & it will leak if you don't do it. This if anything (alnong with long term contracts, military conservatism etc, etc) would be a good reason not to give it to squaddies.
My experience owning both Gore-tex and event parkas. I was skeptical about any product that claims to be waterproof and breathable. Using the jackets as my outer shell for skiing at a resort, after two runs I can really tell the difference, with both you need to build up a bit of heat and sweat, but with the gore-tex I end up feeling like I'm in a sweat lodge and need to use venting zippers to get comfortable again. With e-vent I do not use the zip vents unless it is a really warm day. So in my two years of having both fabrics in my coat quiver, I really prefer the event jacket. So much in fact I just bought another, and will only use my Gore-tex for construction work
I work in a major outdoor retail store and have personal experience with a wide variety of jackets, both in the field and in the city. Here are my thoughts:
eVent is the newcomer and has some room to grow. It is slightly more breathable, but it comes at a price. It is very efficient at wicking away the moisture, but you will have to wear an extra layer to compensate for the heat being lost. As was mentioned earlier, it is a pain to clean, and must be done often. It also doesn't hold up as well over time.
Gore-Tex Pro Shells have more of a tendency to wet out (collect condensation inside) but maintain the heat better. They are more durable and do not need to be cleaned as often, but you will have to use pit zips to help regulate temperature and sweat.
On a recent hike through the Olympic mountains (very wet), I was wearing a Gore-Tex Pro Shell and my buddy was wearing an eVent shell. I could see steam evaporating through his jacket, which gives credit to eVent being more breathable. That being said, using pit zips to regulate the breathability is worth it to me when I consider the maintenance and durability of the G-Tex.
I find I don't sweat nearly as much as other people so I'm thinking Gore-Tex is the better option for me. Durability is a HUGE factor. If you have to spend extra on special cleaning products for the eVent and wash it every 20 uses, my decision has been made. The last thing I want is to go into a blind rage when my $400 jacket ceases to be waterproof. This is what happened to my Columbia jacket (which I know is NOT Gore-Tex or eVent), so just knowing that it can happen to a much more expensive eVent jacket seems reason enough not to get one.
Just a tip from me down here in Oz. We have a very wet / very cold Alpine areas in Victoria & Tasmainia.
Yes, from one extreme to another.
May I encourage people to have a look at Jackets from an Australian Company called Mont Adventure Equipment
and shells made with Hydronaute Pro
You may find what you all have been looking for !!!