Outdoor Research Transonic (2013)

The Outdoor Research Transonic has a unique set of features that you’ll love or hate. It uses Gore-Tex Active, so it’s top of the league on breathability but not the most durable. It’s the design, however, that will divide opinion. It’s 2-3cm longer than some jackets sent in for our test, but the front zip is oddly set just off-centre, presumably to allow a little more space for the single Napoleon chest pocket, which is placed very high on the chest with an angled zip. Surprisingly this actually works okay, as you can get a map in and out of it while wearing a rucksack, although a conventional chest pocket is probably slightly easier to use, but less aesthetically pleasing. The cuffs don’t get any Velcro tab adjusters; they’re just part-elasticated, so you can’t open them for extra venting or close them to lock out draughts: they either fit or they don’t. The hood is a gem of design, though, with a great wired peak and good adjustment from the single rear drawcord, to allow it to fit and move with the head effortlessly. The Outdoor Research Transonic is odd but for some people that oddness may make it ideal.

Fabric Gore-Tex Active
Lining none
Men’s sizes S-L
Women’s sizes none
External pockets 1
Stowable hood no
Side/pit zips no
Weight 310g (size L)
Website www.outdoorresearch.co.uk

 

Verdict

You’ll either love or hate the Outdoor Research Transonic’s quirky chest pocket, offset front zip and non-adjustable cuffs, but the fabric and hood are great while the weight and price are very competitive.

Review by Graham Thompson
First published in Trail magazine July 2013