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Marmot Precip Rain Jacket Review

manufactured by:
Philip Werner
Version:
1
Price:
99.99

Reviewed by:
Rating:
5
On January 25, 2017
Last modified:April 10, 2017

Summary:

The Marmot PreCip in one of the most popular rain jackets ever made for backpacking, hiking, and outdoor recreation. A waterproof breathable rain jacket, the Marmot PreCip incorporates a proprietary membrane called NanoPro with pit-zips to help vent perspiration, an approach to breathability that combines the best of both worlds that produces the best user comfort when worn in challenging weather. A fully-featured hood rivaling ones found on far more expensive technical shells, large storage pockets, and a host of other features make this jacket suitable for four season conditions across a wide range of temperatures. The PreCip is really an excellent value for the money, one that is hard to beat for a rain jacket of this caliber.

The Marmot Precip is the most popular backpacking rain jacket today
The Marmot PreCip is the most popular backpacking rain jacket.

The Marmot PreCip Rain Jacket is the most popular rain jacket today with good reason: it’s a fully featured waterproof breathable rain jacket that provides excellent performance at a reasonable price, usually available under $100. (See: Top 10 Backpacker Rain Jackets)

Besides the price, one of PreCip’s best features is the fully adjustable hood, functionality which is increasingly left off rain jackets, but of vital important to keep rain off your face, glasses if you wear them, and protect your neck from cold drafts. The hood has three points of adjustment: a rear velcro strap to adjust the hood volume and two side toggles that let you adjust the size of the front opening. There’s also a front bill (without a shaping wire) on the hood to protect your face from blowing rain.

If you don’t need the hood, it can be rolled up and tucked into the back collar out-of-the-way. The front of the collar (see top photo) protects the upper chest when closed and has a soft chin guard over the front zipper to protect your face and provide additional comfort. This hood design makes the PreCip ideal for warm weather or winter use, since it provide so much protection and configurability.

The rest of the PreCip Jacket is also loaded with features including pit zips, velcro cuffs on the wrists, and a hem pull along the bottom to prevent cold wind from blowing up underneath. The jacket has two mesh lined front pockets access from the sides which are great to store gloves or a hat and provide additional ventilation. They are partially accessible when worn with a backpack hip belt.

The Marmot Precip Jacket is available in many colors including this high visibility two tone style.
The Marmot PreCip Jacket is available in many colors including this high visibility two tone style.

Being a waterproof breathable rain jacket, the Marmot PreCip is coated on the outside with a (DWR) water-repellent coating that makes water hitting the jacket bead up and roll off it, allowing the jacket to vent water vapor from your perspiration through the jacket’s proprietary membrane. The chemical coating wears off over time, particularly under high abrasion points, like under your shoulder straps. When the coating wears off, the jacket’s exterior fabric will become soaked and “wet out”, blocking the flow of water vapor through the membrane. All waterproof breathable jackets coated with an external DWR suffer from this problem eventually. You can correct it by reapplying the DWR coating (see How to Restore the DWR on a Waterproof Breathable Jacket.) But as long as this DWR coating is good – the PreCip jacket will remain waterproof and breathable.

The Marmot Precip Jacket is coated with an external durable water repellent that makes rain bead up on the jacket's surface and roll off.
The Marmot PreCip Jacket is coated with an external durable water-repellent that makes rain bead up on the jacket’s surface and roll off.

As waterproof breathable jackets go, the Marmot PreCip is on the warm side, in part because the interior has a printed face fabric to protect the waterproof breathable membrane from wear and tear and help reduce internal “clamminess,” when you start to overheat. While jackets made with fewer layers or “thinner” fabrics will keep you cooler in summer, they’re often not warm enough in cooler weather, even when worn with a fleece.

The sizing of the PreCip runs large, so consider sizing down. The weight of a men’s XL is 11.4 ounces.

Recommendation

The Marmot PreCip in one of the most popular rain jackets ever made for backpacking, hiking, and outdoor recreation. A waterproof breathable rain jacket, the Marmot PreCip incorporates a proprietary membrane called NanoPro with pit-zips to help vent perspiration, an approach to breathability that combines the best of both worlds that produces the best user comfort when worn in challenging weather. A fully-featured hood rivaling ones found on far more expensive technical shells, large storage pockets, and a host of other features make this jacket suitable for four season conditions across a wide range of temperatures. The PreCip is really an excellent value for the money, one that is hard to beat for a rain jacket of this caliber.

Disclosure: The author purchased this jacket with his own funds.

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32 comments

  1. Great jackets, but not perfect. I have a couple of them, wearing well after several years.

    The hood peak is rather too floppy to keep off driving rain.
    It’s a good jacket for cycling, except for the hood storage: wind tends to catch and partially unroll it from the collar.
    I wish Marmot would see the bottom edge of the pocket mesh to the jacket, which would then form two large internal pockets perfect for gloves and water bottles in cold weather.

    • Yeah, I have to keep reminding myself not to try to put stuff in them last it slip through. They probably don’t want to sew it because it would poke holes in the fabric that aren’t covered by a second layer like the rest of the pocket. Understandable on a “waterproof.”

  2. Edit to the above: autocorrect strikes again! Should be “sew” instead of “see” the pockets,of course.

  3. Those arm’s are a bit tight. Wear your winter layers when trying this on. You may need to size up.

  4. The Precip is made in tall as well as regular sizes. That’s a big advantage if you’ve got long arms and a long torso. I wish more hiking clothing was available in tall sizes.

  5. And can be had on sale right now for under $70!

  6. Is the LightHeartGear jacket still the top of your list, or do you see going with the Precip (or something else) plus periodic DWR refreshes?

    I’ve used a Marmot Precip for 3+ years, lining’s starting to wear through on the collar and inside, but happy with it otherwise. I like the bottom cinch strap also which the LHG jacket does not have.

    • My personal gear list still includes the Lightheart for three season backpacking, but it’s not thick (warm enough) for winter, when I use an OR Foray Jacket. This Marmot Jacket is quite competitive with the Lightheart, provided you’re willing to put up with DWR refreshes, which I’m not.

  7. I had great luck with this jacket until the lining wears out (as with all of these kinda jackets). Last as long as jackets I’ve paid over $200 USD for. However, the great mystery to me has always been:
    Is Marmot pronounced with a hard “t”?
    Or like “Marmo”?

  8. I bought a yellow one from Marmot for $40 last night. Not normally a fan of bright colors for hiking, but I couldn’t resist the price and figured that at least the color was traditional for raingear. It should be a 7-8 ounce savings over my LL Bean Gore-Tex.

    I did size up the jacket since many jackets are tight in the shoulders for me.

  9. This is a great web site and like and agree with many reviews. I don’t think I’ve ever commented before and my feelings about the PreCip jacket are so strong, I thought it was time. I purchased the PreCip jacket and pants a few years ago. Factors influencing my purchase included cost and the great reviews I read on several vendor sites. In a very light, misty rain the jacket will be okay. However, it’s far from anything I would count on and in any kind of heavy (even brief) rain, the PrecCip will fail. I encourage anyone thinking the PreCip is anything but water resistant to reconsider. The failure of the PreCip on long section hikes in MA and VT made me research “waterproof” clothing beyond what typical consumers do and I learned a lot. I’ve settled on Gore-Tex Active and Pro (not Pro Shell) based clothing – pants and jackets. Expensive, yes but completely worth it and if purchased on sale, you can get terrific deals. For example, a $450 dollar jacket was purchased for $180; $500 pants for $94. All first quality and IMO, worth every penny. I test my jackets and pants while in my home’s shower. That’s a pretty good way to test things and make sure the gear performs as expected and helps understand their limits. Try that with a PreCip and you’ll find out quickly just how poorly it performs. Anyway, my 2 cents. Happy and safe hiking.

    • It’s not the GOR-TEX that makes these jackets waterproof/breathable but the DWR coating on the outside. You’re not paying more for better waterproofing but better breath ability, which sadly is still a joke. They all fail if they have a DWR coating that rubs off. Then you need to reproof the DWR to restore it.

      Don’t be fooled by the GOR-TEX spin. It’s all bullshit. Any improvement in waterproofing/breathability you do experience between jackets is the result of the quality or thickness of the factory DWR coating, which still rubs off.

    • Testing in a shower isn’t a good way to test waterproofing by the way. Because it doesn’t capture the fact that the DWR coating rubs off with use or the fact that backpack shoulder straps rub DWR coatings off. You’re also forcing water into the fabric under pressure, which doesn’t happen in the real world.

      • Hey Philip. I completely agree that the DWR finish is important. My PreCip jacket had only been used 2 or 3 times (days) as a windbreaker and wasn’t ever mistreated before getting caught in the downpours. The outer shell was (and still is) like new. Doing the A/B shower test with the Marmot PreCip vs Marmot’s Hyper Lite Jacket w/Gore-Tex Active was telling. It’s certainly possible that because the Gore-Tex clothing is higher-end, it works better due to better shell materials and better repellent finish. I guess we’ll differ on the value Gore-Tex Pro and Active materials bring to the clothing market.

        Anyway, thanks again for all the work you and others do here. It’s been a huge value for me over the last few years.

  10. I’ve had a precip pullover rain jacket that has been a great piece of gear to have along for a number of years. Inexpensive and works great as a wind breaker too when you are at the top.

  11. I am not sure all the statements made in the original post and subsequent thread are accurate.

    My understanding is that the DWR is to keep the “breathable” “waterproof” membrane from saturating. Once the membrane saturates (also called wets out), it is no longer breathable but should be waterproof. Many manufacturers that sell into Europe are starting to publish their specifications for breathability and waterproofness (hydrostatic head) both of which parameters are measured in PSI. As pointed about above regular Goretex is highly breathable and highly water proof but at 3 to 4X the price of Precip.
    There is a guy in the SF Bay Area Roger Nisley who has a test rig and often tests garmet and posts his results on BPL.com.
    But back to breathability. The water vapor condenses on the inside of the layer and relies on osmosis and the temperature gradient between the bottom of the layer (your body) and the outer environment for the water molecules to move across the membrane. This is why hardshells work so much better in winter when it is 20 degrees outside. Still the amount of moisture that needs to be moved can overwhelm the membrane. Our bodies also produce heat and the perspiration to reduce the heat requires evaporation to cool us down. Once you open the pit zips you so you can vent the heat (and some moisture) you impair the temperature differential, the adversely impact the breathability of the membrane. This is most jackets made with waterproof/breathable membranes and fabrics that claim to be highly breathable like eVent and Polartec’s NeoShell omit the pit zips (and why if you buy a GoreTex PacLite shell it better come with pit zips!
    All this being said, the Precip for the price performs well and has a nice hood.

    • That’s what I said. Breathability stops when all the little holes in exterior fabric fill up with water so vapor can’t pass through them. Your sweat gets backed up inside the coat on the other side of the membrane and the fact that the Gore-text is waterproof becomes pretty irrelevant.

      As for lab tests, don’t get me started. Propaganda. So easy for the brands to manipulate what gets reported. Show me a proper, consistent EN standard with statistically repeatable results and you’d get my attention.

      • Bruce – you imply that a jacket is waterproof if the exterior fabric is soaked through. That’s generous, especially when it kills breathability and makes the interior of the jacket a shower. If we disagree, it’s on the definition of waterproofing. I’m not generous.

  12. There are excellent write-ups at Sierra Trading Post on several fabrics along with their “waterproof” and breathability ratings. STP continues to modify this information as new materials make their way into the market. I settled on Gore-Tex as I consider their materials to be proven, at least more than others. Performance for me is absolutely the most important factor in any purchase and I use this information as a guide when purchasing shells and pants.

    Please see
    http://www.sierratradingpost.com/lp2/waterproof-guide/
    and
    http://www.sierratradingpost.com/blog/lifestyle/breathability-ratings/

    The PreCip is inexpensive and it can be purchased for around $50 when on sale. Does it perform? You’ll have to decide that and under what conditions to use it.

      • Propaganda a.k.a. Fake News ?
        One has to start somewhere when choosing rain gear . I imagine the Lightheart silicone impregnated material would suffer the same leak issues on abrasion areas. And act as a garbage bag over the body . The one feature (or benefit ) of the PreCip jacket no one has mentioned is its dry ability . When hiking in a storm I am soaked inside. But still warm . At shelter I hang the jacket inside out , then right side out. This jacket dries amazingly fast . This will be my 3rd season using the Precip jacket and pants . Both a life saver In high winds and dropping temps . Good article and posts , thanx to all

      • Really Internet 101. You need to take all marketing materials published by retailers with a grain of Salt. Their mission in life is to sell you stuff. Most independent hiking bloggers will tell you that Gore-tex doesn’t live up to the hype.

        As for the Lightheart gear jacket or any other made with silicone impregnated nylon, it’s not subject to abrasion because it’s not coated (it’s impregnated all the way through). Companies make tents out of it for this reason.

        You will get wet inside a silnylon jacket but it will keep you warm. That’s what it’s supposed to do. And the lightheart also has pit zips.

  13. So is this similar to the North Face Venture jacket in terms of functionality? I’m new to backpacking, and I’m trying to start on a somewhat limited budget by using what I already own.

    • Hard to tell by comparing the specs. Both have pit zips. They’re both $99 rain jackets made with proprietary waterproof breathable layers and DWR. If you’re just hiking on trails and want to save money, try a Frogg Toggs UL rain suit.

      • Thanks. I already own the North Face jacket. Just trying to figure out what “suitable rain gear” is.

  14. Philip

    Having done the TGO challenge would you recommend the LHG rain jacket for that over buying something like the Precip as a purchase just for that trip and not wearing it out much before hand? Planning on going back to my homeland for the Challenge next year if accepted and thought your experience would help with this decision.

    PS. Congrats on spelling Philip properly with one L!

  15. I packed out in a heavy rain a week ago Fri. and my, I think, my Precip failed. It may have been the stress of packing up wet and that I perspire heavily. (I winter run/jog, and my Precip works fine.)
    I got some Granger’s 2 in 1 and ran my Marmot through the wash and dry cycles as per instructions. Anyone have to do this yet with their Marmot Precip? I’ve loved it so far.

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