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Thread: REI Magma

  1. #1

    Default REI Magma

    Is the REI Magma still the same quality as they were a year or two ago?
    I remember reading how good a value they were; 850 fill hydrophobic goose down, foot box, quality zipper, under 2 lbs for a 17ー (28ー comfort) rated bag for about $350.

    I'm in the market for a new bag for when I don't need the 0ー bag, but need more than my summer bag...and it would also allow my gf to join me on a cool night overnight hike.
    .
    Is there something else in the same ballpark as the REI Magma that I should consider?
    Thanks for your help.

  2. #2

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    UQG bandit is a great contender. You can dial in the quilt exactly to your needs

    Loco Libre serrano is also up there with even more customization options

  3. #3
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    I bought the REI Magma Women's last year and loved the warmth but ended up returning it.
    Did some cold weather camping and found that the zip would not stay zipped all the way up; and the draw cord around the face would not stay cinched.
    Also, the baffles along the zip folded back with my restless sleeping, allowing cold air in through the zipper.

    Loved the fabric and the down fill was super warm.

  4. #4

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    The bag is still amazing, both the womens and the mens versions. My wife and I have both and zip them together when it gets super cold. When the temp drops quite a bit I switch to using it over my EE quilt.
    No issues as of yet and we put em through the ringer in the tetons and Shenandoah. Can usually get them for 275 on sale instead of 350. If they're full price right now just go attend a free class at your local REI (any topic usually) and you'll net a 20% off coupon.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by C4web88 View Post
    The bag is still amazing, both the womens and the mens versions. My wife and I have both and zip them together when it gets super cold. When the temp drops quite a bit I switch to using it over my EE quilt.
    No issues as of yet and we put em through the ringer in the tetons and Shenandoah. Can usually get them for 275 on sale instead of 350. If they're full price right now just go attend a free class at your local REI (any topic usually) and you'll net a 20% off coupon.
    Right on. I haven't become a member of REI yet; have been waiting for a large purchase to make it worth my while.
    Plus, it seems that 20% coupons are offered up pretty freely on the internet.
    .
    The idea of a quilt with a sewn foot box interests me a little, too, but I do toss and turn a lot while hiking, so I fear it wouldn't work for me.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by OzzieChick View Post
    I bought the REI Magma Women's last year and loved the warmth but ended up returning it.
    Did some cold weather camping and found that the zip would not stay zipped all the way up; and the draw cord around the face would not stay cinched.
    Also, the baffles along the zip folded back with my restless sleeping, allowing cold air in through the zipper.

    Loved the fabric and the down fill was super warm.
    Thank you for your input.

  7. #7
    Registered User Just Bill's Avatar
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    If you want a mummy over a quilt (which I prefer around 20* as well)... it's a very high quality bag.

    Though I got the Magma 10... now the Magma 15 this season? And got a price increase as well it seems.
    That was a fairly clean 20*... looks like the 15 will be a fairly clean 30*.

    What makes it a good bag is what others mentioned- getting it on sale. I got it during the dividend sale with a 25% coupon.

    It is a slimmer cut but nice light bag, which at sale prices around $280 is when it becomes relevant to look at.

    A direct comparison to the Magma 10 I have would be something like the Alpinlite... which is also a hair under 2lbs and a true 20* bag. So by that metric the Magma 10 was a great value.
    https://www.moosejaw.com/product/wes...g-bag_10016892

    About the closest off hand I can think of to this new Magma 15 would be the Western Mountaineering Summerlite. (which I also have).
    https://www.moosejaw.com/product/wes...g-bag_10027670

    Now that is a much lighter bag with a solid 30* rating from one of the best, if not the best gear builders. Course it's $400 and never onsale... but quite a bit lighter.

    So... since you mentioned you were not an REI member... it's possible that the Magma 15 isn't quite the value it was the last season or two.
    For me, I have the REI card and the 'cost' was covered in rewards. I was actually shopping it vs the $600+ 10* Verasalite so the savings was considerable. However it was disappointing somewhat as it was clearly not a 10* bag that struggled at 20*. The issue with them rating things at the EN limit is pretty well known now, but I breezed past that when it first came out. Still, being able to push most stuff beyond the rating I was surprised to see this struggle to even hit the comfort rating.

    Ultimately I'll end up picking up the versalite at some point... but the Magma 10 was still a keeper and will work fine for my wife for half the price in the 35*+ range.

    So... looking like much less of a winner to me, especially if you don't have any 'free money' to spend on it.
    For you I'd probably keep shopping.

    Not to push you again with it... but one 'quilt' thought that works for the 30 ish range you're shopping is to simply overdo it.
    https://enlightenedequipment.com/enigma-stock/
    If you go with the stock enigma for $330- you get a 10* quilt with a well made footbox, and good pad strap system.
    You still need to supply the headwear... but with 25 ounces of quilt, you have some ounces to spare carrying extra head insulation so you're still at the 2lb mark, but with some more versatility and an overkill quilt to help you with any draft issues you may have. I find so long as you pair them with a large pad (26") as most of us do anyway that you can use a quilt into the 20's okay. Much past that I prefer a mummy unless I'm in a hammock.
    Last edited by Just Bill; 03-06-2019 at 13:55.

  8. #8

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    I was in REI today and checked out the Magma 30. The regular length fit my six foot frame well and felt comfortable but, I must admit, it seemed under filled. Holding the bag up to the light there were a number of blank spots in the insulation. I fluffed the bag quite a bit and let it rest, which helped a little, but it still seemed under filled. Maybe I知 spoiled by Western Mountaineering bags? I was seriously thinking of buying the Magma but now I知 going to take a pass. I値l probably swallow hard and spring for a Megalight.


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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vince G View Post
    Holding the bag up to the light there were a number of blank spots in the insulation.
    That's a good thing to do. I've read that treated down tends to clump (not just when washed - even beforehand) and I will say that a 15F, 850FP treated down bag felt very different to me (almost sheet-like, as polyester insulation is) than my old untreated down (which feels like it freely flows and fills spaces in the shell quite well).

    That said I also recently tried a 0F down bag that made no claim about whether the down was hydrophobically treated. There was a ton of down in there, but it clumped and there were voids when held up to the light. I suspect it was treated down after all - simply because it's standard these days, and the ONLY untreated down bags I've seen lately have been for the top-end brands (and this was not one of them). In any case, I'm going to try to avoid it in any future purchase.

  10. #10
    Registered User mikeharwood's Avatar
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    I work at REI. If you would have asked me 4 years ago was our brand stuff any good I would have said no, buy something else. The last few years things have changed dramatically. I can now say our stuff is top shelf and use many of the products myself. I have a Magma 10 and recently used it in CO Elk Hunting. If you take a class at REI they will give you a 23% off coupon for one retail REI item exculting bikes. Enjoy your hiking!

  11. #11
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    Phillip Werner has a positive review of the Magma 30 Quilt over at sectionhiker.com: https://sectionhiker.com/rei-coop-ma...ilt-30-review/

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by MacBrave View Post
    Phillip Werner has a positive review of the Magma 30 Quilt over at sectionhiker.com: https://sectionhiker.com/rei-coop-ma...ilt-30-review/
    The quilt looks like a winner, but I think the Magma 30 sleeping bag is severely under filled. For example, the Magma quilt has 10.5 ounces of 850 goose down for size regular while the Magma 30 bag size regular has 8.5 ounces. In theory, the bag should have more because it includes a hood and wrap around baffles. Looking at other bags of this type, they typically range from 10-12 ounces of down fill. The new Sea to Summit Spark bag (which looks intriguing) has 11 ounces of 850 down in size regular and has a narrower girth. I would say the Magma 30 sleeping bag should be rated to 40 degrees, at best.


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  13. #13
    Registered User Just Bill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikeharwood View Post
    I work at REI. If you would have asked me 4 years ago was our brand stuff any good I would have said no, buy something else. The last few years things have changed dramatically. I can now say our stuff is top shelf and use many of the products myself. I have a Magma 10 and recently used it in CO Elk Hunting. If you take a class at REI they will give you a 23% off coupon for one retail REI item exculting bikes. Enjoy your hiking!
    I'd generally agree- for the most part REI housebrand isn't cutting edge cottage stuff perhaps- but is pretty solid gear.

    A thing or two not often considered:

    If you buy something over $200- since you get 10% back on regular purchases- it covers the membership.

    The biggest thing the membership gets you is a one year no questions asked returns policy. No receipt needed as they just look up your member number.
    I realize folks complain about how something is cheaper on Amazon or others will match a coupon... but unless you are 100% on what you're buying (which few REI buyers are) then that is a pretty big bonus.

    If something is more expensive... most of the time you get the 10% back off the top. If you have the CC you get another 5% back.
    So for me- 15% off and easy returns for a year generally puts REI purchases right on par with other options.
    Scoring a bigger coupon usually means a reduced dividend- but if it's a good deal it's a good deal. The return isn't affected by a coupon.

    If you're asking advice on gear buying in general- odds are decent you're going to be making changes or upgrades as you go.
    The minor upfront ding is generally madeup down the line on these exchanges if you are looking at hard numbers.

    And this is a personal thing really but- if you're going into REI (or any retailer) to try before you buy... seems fair to actually pay for that service and buy.
    Most gear is pretty good these days. I'm a cottage vendor and my opinion is you go to the cottage guy for stuff you can't get elsewhere. For several pieces of gear though- you'll get higher quality, better insurance (returns), and the opportunity to shop for something face to face. Even if they sell the best stuff there is- unless you really know what you want from a cottage guy and can both appreciate and make use of that hyperspecialized piece of gear then more often than not your money is better spent on something off the shelf to get you going.

  14. #14

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    I think for your price point and your needs you'd be served well with a 10-20* quilt.

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  15. #15

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    I may take the quilt leap.
    I'm really considering it.
    Even though the cottage industry people don't have the same return policy (understandably - I'm self employed, I get it), the ones with good reputations seem to hold their value in the used market.
    .
    Thank you all for your input so far

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by MtDoraDave View Post
    I may take the quilt leap.
    I'm really considering it.
    Even though the cottage industry people don't have the same return policy (understandably - I'm self employed, I get it), the ones with good reputations seem to hold their value in the used market.
    .
    Thank you all for your input so far
    Be warned about quilts for ground sleeping, they take some getting used to and there are definite compromises. The obvious is not having a hood and, in most cases, a neck draft tube. In addition, all quilts come with some sort of pad attachment system that, when you move around, you can count on failing at some point during the night. Specifically, with the quilt cinched up, when I shift
    from my back to my side, a gap opens around my butt that sends in a blast of cold air. I have never been able to avoid this, especially when groggy with sleep. For me, if I知 sleeping on the ground, I値l always choose a sleeping bag if I expect the temps to be in the low 40s or below. As far as quilts I have used with the best pad attachment system, Enlightened Equipment and Katabatic Gear have worked the best for me. I would stay away from quilts by hammock manufacturers, their ground attachment systems are usually pretty bad basically, a piece of shock cord and some toggles.


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  17. #17

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    There is a thread over on r/ul about the quilt.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/Ultralight/..._rei_magma_30/

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by MtDoraDave View Post
    I may take the quilt leap.
    I'm really considering it.
    Even though the cottage industry people don't have the same return policy (understandably - I'm self employed, I get it), the ones with good reputations seem to hold their value in the used market.
    .
    Thank you all for your input so far
    I decided to give it a shot. I have a 10* Enigma on the way.

    I have a turtle fur neck gaiter and a fluffy fleece hat, and even in my 0* mummy, I usually put my pillow inside it (to hold it still) and my head sticks out.


    Thanks again for everyone's input.

  19. #19

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    ... should I start a different thread for pad advice?

    The pad I've been using is the regular size prolite plus.

    I'm leaning (heavily) towards the thermarest xlite.
    Should I stick with the lighter "regular" size, or is the large size better for quilts?

    I'm 5' 10-1/2" and between 170 - 175.

    Why not just use the prolite plus?
    My gf is going to join me on a hike, so I need another pad.

  20. #20

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    Go to REI and check out the regular Xlite. Some people, myself included, can稚 sleep on the regular cause it痴 too narrow. BTW, the width of the regular pad is 20 inches deflated and around 18.5 inches inflated. Most other regular pads are 20 inches inflated. Anyway, I have the Xlite large and it works great, and that pads width is 25 inches inflated.


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