Mountain Equipment Co-op Phoenix 10F (-12C) ReviewMarch 15, 2013
- Good weight for this class
- Roomy and comfortable
- Good compressibility
- Durability concerns (zipper snags)
- Price/value isn’t optimal
This hybrid bag blends the best of both worlds (down and synthetic), but given its weight and bulk, the Phoenix clearly lives in the synthetic bag world. In this class, it matches up nicely with the other top contenders, with a reasonable warmth-to-weight ratio, good packability, and a comfortable fit. Only side-sleepers complained of a bit of constriction around their shoulders.
The 550-fill in the top lacks the incredible compressibility of higher quality down, but still represents a solid improvement over most synthetics. That, coupled with the light polyester shell, helps make this one of the more compressible bags in the class, scrunching down to a respectable 9×11 inch package. The presence of Hyperloft Eco synthetic insulation in the bottom panel of the bag prevents it from being packed any smaller.
Warmth to Weight ratio
The synthetic fill base of the bag helped ensure that the wet tent floor of our Hoh River camp (deep in the Olympic Rainforest) didn’t dampen the insulation value of the bag. The down up top, meanwhile fluffed up into a thick, warm quilt that wrapped snugly around us, keeping us toasty warm even on nights that saw snow falling on the cedars.
The modest taper of the Phoenix reduced the amount of excess space inside the bag, but no so much that we felt trapped or constrained. Only the one serious side-sleeper on our test team felt it was a little too tight in the shoulders, but he also slept with his arms wrapped around his chest in a solo hug. The hood’s design works well, with a comfortable fit that doesn’t interfere with your sleep, even when rolling over during the night.
Though the bag performed well after repeated washing cycles, with no noticeable loss of loft, I did encounter a bit of zipper snagging during the night. Several times during testing, a fold of shell material got caught in the zipper slide, and though the shell was never punctured, the likelihood of a tear happening at some point is there.
This bag is not EN rated.