Rab Infinity Down Jacket

Rab say 510g, but at an impressively fat looking 470g for a size Large, in for test is Rab’s new Infinity Down Jacket. Microsite here .

The big story is the new Pertex Quantum shell fabric, at 25g/m² it’s the lightest Pertex fabric yet made.  Still downproof, and “virtually” windproof, which says to me that it’s great for insulated jackets and sleeping bags but won’t be quiet as sexy in a windshirt?
It’s a lovely fabric to handle, soft and not in the least shiny. The water repellency might be better than we think too, I stuck the hood under the shower for a second and all I got was some impressive beading on the surface, no absorption. I wonder how that’ll last in the field?

It looks awfy nice, and one Glasgow Rab retailer I spoke to said they weren’t stocking it as it looked a little too “lifestyle”, I have to disagree there, it looks clean and functional. Insulation shouldn’t be shapeless, fitted and neat mean better performance, and it that makes it look good, then it’s a Win all round yes/no?

The devil is in the detail, and he’s been working hard. The chin/mouth area is lined with microfleece which as well as being comfy will stop damp breath going straight into the down. The zip baffle is insulated and sewn into mini-tubes to makes snagging an unlikely event. All the zips are reversed (less abrasion from them flat side), and the main one is single ended, but the jacket isn’t overly long so getting to your fly in a hurry shouldn’t be a hassle or mean you have to undo the whole jacket.
The zipped pockets are well placed, high enough to be above hipbelt or harness, and deep enough to bury your hands behind the fat stitch-through baffles of 850 fill down.

The hood is fixed (Hurrah!) and is a simple affair to keep faff and bulk to a minimum, no adjustment, no rollaway shenanigans, just a form-fitted shape with a soft lycra face edging to pull it in.
Inside there’s a little zipped pocket, with the weightless stuffsack poking out below. The cuffs are simple self-fabric elasticated and the hem has bungee adjustment at both hips.
The fit is just-right on me, not too slim and not oversized for layering. This should work over light layers as well as over a shell.

I saw this in Tiso and didn’t think much other than, ooh, nice colour. Then the press release came in and I went Ah…
In some ways lightweight is on trial here, the lightest fabric, high quality down fill, the minimalist stitch-through construction, the lack of unnecessary features.
It’ll go one of two ways. The jacket won’t cut it and I’ll end up taking something more reliable to winter camps, or it’ll totally rock and all the heavy overcomplicated kit will be shuffling in the corner hoping that no one asks it any questions.

Updates as we go.

34 thoughts on “Rab Infinity Down Jacket

  1. I like the look of it. My wife thinks it looks like a boiler lagging jacket. One issue. Stitch through baffles for winter? Not sure about that.

  2. It does look like a cylinder jacket, so does the Berghaus one now I think about it!

    Stitch-through down is what I’ve worn most for the past few years. I think it can worth the weight (well, more packed bulk) saving if the jacket’s done well, it’ll never be as warm as box-wall, but you know me, low weight at the expense of performance isn’t on my radar, so I won’t use it if if it doesn’t keep me warm enough.
    I hope the Infinity’s good, it’s really photogenic :o)

  3. Yes, the Yukon is incredibly warm for its weight. I am not aware of anything like it. It keeps me very warm high up in the Pyrenees in winter, and it weighs almost half as much as what some mates are wearing…

    By the way, this must be the first time in history a retailer dismisses a jacket for looking “too lifestyle”. It’s usually “it looks too technical, it’ll scare customers away” :S

  4. Aye, I think it’s the slightly retro looks maybe?

    It’s funny this talk of down jackets, winter has come round again so damn quick.

  5. You’re right, Autumn came and went so quickly!

    The Pyrenees received their first serious snow last weekend (my tent almost collapsed on me from the weight of the snow as I slept obliviuos to the storm!). After a sunny week, it seems we’re about to enter full on winter next week with a lot of snow expected, and it’s here to stay…

    I have mixed feelings about this, I like winter but I feel like I didn’t enjoy Autumn enough this year :(

  6. Aye, autumn was a flash of colour and then it’s nearly over. Some trees have been a little slow which is nice, still some leaves out there to delight, but even that couldn’t take away the grey of today.
    Blue skies and frost, that’s the stuff :o)

  7. Stitch through is fine, but that extra vertical stitching on the front of it? Looks a touch like marketing inspired vandalism to me – should be more than enough loft not to need it.

    Not a big problem but its the sort of thing which would drive me utterly mad :)

  8. I fell in love with this jacket when I saw it in a local shop and tried it on. I could live in it. Not as ‘protective’ as say, the Neutrino or my North Star with that minimalist hood but most of us will have hats or shells with wired brims and such so I don’t see it being a problem.

    I just got the Primaloft-filled Xenon which has the same 10d Quantum fabric. It’s textile witchcraft I tell you!

  9. Hmmm, this looks really nice. there’s a bewildering choice of down and decent primaloft insulation jackets around now. i tried the Montane Northstar this weekend and instantly wished i had the funds to buy it. they had various Rabs in the shop, too (not the infinity alas) but the Northstar just worked/fitted and appealed massively. My mate needs a packable down or primaloft layer as his Rab Belay is too bulky for that and has became his winter jacket. be interested to see how you get on with this as i might recommend he tries it.

    Bar.

  10. It’s an instantly “friendly” piece to use, and it does feel warm.

    I really think the brands are still upping the ante with new kit, it’s as if they know financial armageddon is coming and they want to come out on top, not by cutting corners but by getting best models out there to catch the eye.

    The North Star is another cracker.

  11. The front stitching? Dunno what the reasoning is, I know having smaller chambers does work in other down gear, and from using a few synthetics and down pieces with this conctruction on the front, is does make it neat, nicely shaped when you wear it, clean for wearing on the move etc It also means that if you do wear it on the move body movement won’t crush the down and shift it up the baffle, it’ll just crush the the down and leave it where it is.
    With the thinner fabrics we’re using today down shift is very visible and I reckon that might be part of the reasoning behind folk using the smaller baffles?

  12. I am after a new down jacket (when i’ve sold my old to large Rab one) and its turning into the hardest bit of kit i’ve been looking to get for ages. Choices and more choices. Originally wanted a detachable hood, not many have that option now, so would prefer to be able to roll it down. Also wanted sub 700grammes but which gives you that instant glow of warmth when you throw it on, but also doesn’t make you sweat like a glassblowers arse if you walk around town in it. Be interesting to no what you think Pete of the warmth compared to your Neutrino and the fabric durability compared to pertex endurance. Could go on the ever increasing list along with ME Vega,Omega & various others, lol.

  13. It’s always difficult committing to the expense of the bigger purchases without knowing just how good it is isn’t it?
    The Heutrino’s a cracker, it’ll be my point of comparison from Rab.

  14. i really want one of these, hoping that mr christmas will bring me one!!!

    tried some of the new rab stuff on in the lakes today and was quite impressed with it, although there was softshell with way to many zips and stuff on, much prefer my baltoro guide(s)

  15. Tried this on in the new Tiso in Perth. We immediatley named it The Irn Bru Jacket. Trying to find the ideal down jacket is a nightmare. Would you consider the Neutrino plus overkill? to bulky to pack?

  16. It’s heavier, but it’s warmer, it’ll come down to what you want the most.I don’t think it’ll be that much bigger packing than the regular Neutrino, amd I happily carry that.

    As I’m camping most of the time I get away with lighter jackets, I just get in my sleeping bag, but for a stand-alone jacket, warm is good.

  17. We’re really spoilt for choice these days when it comes to down jackets and I’m frankly glad I’m not in the market for one cos ma heid would burst :o(

    My Nunatak Skaha+ was just magic in Jan/Feb this year and I’ll be sticking with it for a long time yet.

    I’ve got a 10 year old Rab here btw that my Mr’s loves even tho’ it completely swamps her :o)

  18. trying to work out the same question, what down jacket to buy for the winter…..

    currently eyeing up the PHD mimimus jacket with hood. I also tried the RAB Neutrino and Infinity on a few weeks ago. The Infinity was more of an instant *wow* factor than the Neutrino, i really like the look of PHD kit though……

  19. Down gear is the best it’s been I think, and folk are buying it despite the prices in our economic climate. Looks like the theory that folk will still buy quality is right.

  20. Hello gingerbreadman!

    PHD kit is great, I trust it entirely and I’ll be back in their sleeping bags on the next trip. I’ve used a Minimus (I think, teal coloured Drishell with hood) for nearly two years I think, and it’s been great.

    Choices…

  21. So any conclusions in the end on the Infinity vs Yukon? If the Infinity came in a smock/pullover it’d be no contest but at 510g v 420g, the Yukon seems to pip it. But then ULOG lists a Medium as 436g and large as 462g (you say 470g) so where is the 510g?? The Pertex Quantum GL looks really good, so maybe an Infinity is the way to go…

    Decisions…

  22. Think I’ve noticed them doing that with weights of their down stuff before. Baffling really. Have to assume they got the wrong marketing department to weigh their stuff :)

    Yukon rather more warmth & water resistance and about the same weight in smock form. More expensive, a lot longer to wait for it and a bit of a guess cf fit. Shrug.

  23. 510g could be the stuffsack plus swingtags?! Mind you, I had the stuff sack in the pocket when I weighed mine.

    It’s always hard to decide on a “yes, that one”. Most of the good brands kit is good, it’s the personal appeal of fit or deatailing that can make it perfect.

  24. Just read a review of this on terrybnd’s blog and he rates it very highly. Its growing on me now as i could layer it with my LIM down vest for extra warmth when needed. Just looked at Rab’s site and the down comparisons with the Neutrino in theory should the infinity be warmer as the downs better quality but a bit less of it?

  25. The baffles are wider on the Neutrino, so less potential seams/cold spots? Lots of variables in a comparison, it’ll take a better mathemetician that I to work it out :o)

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