Check out this jacket
. It is like no other available incorporating an iPod controller using copper-infused material as the 'wire' to transmit the signal to the iPod. It is cutting edge technology almost relegating the eVENT membrane to the back seat. It is constructed as well as any jacket on the market and is the only true competitor to Arcteryx. I say this and repeat it here only because very few people have even heard of Westcomb. I barely heard about it a few months ago. Since then I have toured the factories in Vancouver and have used several of their jackets in different conditions. It is as good as stuff as I have ever seen (I'm pretty picky) and the fit is the best I have ever worn (size medium). I am working hard to get it into more stores so that it can be seen by the general public. I believe they have ideas beyond eVENT that will revolutionize the outerwear market. They have already won 2 Polartec Apex Awards
and ISPO BrandNew Award for 2007
. It's a brand to keep your eye on for sure.
The problem of Westcomb is that they're a still a small company. I believe they only exist since 2004. The first time I heard about them was somewhere in 2006 and I have been trying to find out more since then. But there website has little information and the catalog/workbook I received has little more. They should pay more attention to what makes them different from the rest. Ok, they use eVENT but so do brands like Integral Designs and Loki and European brands like RAB are trying to get a piece of the NA market. So the fact that they use eVENT is not enough to make them different.
I have a number of catalogs and workbooks from Arc'teryx and they are a master in showing there attention to detail. I think Westcomb should try to do the same.
The problem is that if nobody offers the perfect mix of all. eVENT has a distinct advantage in its mebrane technology while Gore seems to have the edge if you look to construction. An eVENT membrane combined with a Pro Shell backer should be awesome. Arc'teryx offers some features which e.g. Westcomb doesn't seem to offer and vice versa. One of the things I regret is that the latest jackets from Westcomb have no specific ventilation openings. BHA can tell me what they want, no membrane currently works that well that I can't overwhelm it.
Things can change very quicly by the way. As already mentioned, Gore has the possibility to make membranes similar to eVENT. They already have them, just not in jackets currently.