It's a pretty expensive but lightweight jacket that is ideal for a very limited variety of activities, yet provides effecting technology that offers exciting promise for future applications.
I'm 6ft 1 and 195 and the jacket is somewhat roomy in a size Large. The sleeves are long enough for my 6'6" wingspan and the it comes down to my thigh. It's certainly a parka and not a jacket.
The hood is insane puffy- comically so- and uses a single drawcord pull that closes the hood down- identical to some of their other hooded down pieces. The hood is very warm and I have only used it when absolutely necessary.
The internal pockets warm gloves ,
Food or water bottles really well and are by your obliques, and are less obstructive. Note: the drop in pockets are smaller/ shallower than the Das or Fitz roy and are made with light weight materials. The chest pocket is insulated and large.
The hand warmer pockets are insulated on both sides and are BIG with equally big zipper openings that are easy to use gloves. I assume this is for storing/warming things.
I have wanted to use it more as a belay jacket but have been afraid to and it doesn't offer a double zipper. I have to zip UNDER my belay device for this to work- this is possible due to the length of the jacket.
I've used this thing hiking,backcountry skiing and winter camping and have used it in utter freezing temps (-27) with a Merino 3 and r1 underneath and in rain with nothing but a T shirt. It is too warm to use above 20 degrees imo.
I have never worn it around town for a few reasons:
Other than looking like a tool, I don't think Patagonia has enough Encapsil down lying around to fix the jackets- after speaking with a rep, it sounds like they are making adjustments to their supply of down,( now that they have their traceable down supply line), and supposedly the "formula"- I have no idea what that means.
My suspicion is that Patagonia is going to make a large part of their down product with Encapsil, and certainly with lighter pieces.
After a few years of occasional use. It has leaked one plume through repeated stuffings. And the Pertex Endurance UL is surprisingly durable and weather resistant. It lofts well but after spending a few days in a leaking closet, it lost a lot of its loft. It was gross in there. But the jacket survived albeit smelling odd and slightly less "firm".
I've sent it in for one cleaning and it came back as lofty as I first received it- so much so that the down became disproportionately stuffed, actually causing some clumping- I had to gently "massage" the down to distribute it. It doesn't smell at all. But, I haven't used this jacket since. I
Overall, a neat innovation and something I would use more if I knew patagonia could service it. But honestly, at this price point NOBODY other than mountaineers should pay $700 for a piece of equipment. Mostly, I'm excited to see more of this tech in ultralight pieces and sleeping bags.
Warmth: 9.8/10 - I am sure there are warmer jackets.
Weight: 10/10 my size L is ~19oz
Durability: 6/10- better than most UL fabric but..
Value: 4/10- unless you are going mountaineering, this jacket isn't worth it.
For most, like myself, it isn't worth it the price.