Comparable Jackets to MHW Alchemy?

11:33 a.m. on February 14, 2011 (EST)
0 reviewer rep
1 forum posts

Hello there, first post.

I just received my MHW Alchemy jacket, after reading many solid reviews. I have no issues with the "functional" components, it's the perfect level of weather protection, it's very warm, etc. etc.

But I don't really like the look... I got the black/titanium, and the black isn't really black. It looks faded, and makes the jacket look much older than it is. I'm an urbanite that is trapped in the city most of the year, but use all of my vacation days each year out in the backcountry spaces around the US. Thus, I want it to be functional when I do get out, but most of the time, I'll use it as a jacket in town.

I wasn't thrilled with the "titanium" patches, as I originally wanted an all black jacket. I think it the black was really black, I'd be ok with the titanium, but I think it just cheapens the look of the jacket.

I tried the TNF Apex Bionic, and like the look, but it's a much bulkier cut than the Alchemy.

Any ideas on comparable jackets in price, function, but with a different look?

1:17 p.m. on February 14, 2011 (EST)
62 reviewer rep
312 forum posts


If you plan on keeping it, dark clothes (paired with bright hat/lid/helmet) are good for mountain biking because they get so muddy quickly. If you don't plan on caving or mountain biking, it will not be good value sitting in the closet.

So then, bear in mind that ordering online will only throw up the following hurdles:

The fit from another manufacturer may be very different (I think it is the case); the softshell fabric may be warmer/cooler - they vary so much based on lining thickness; if you're happy with MHW technical details, you may not be able to match that in another jacket.

So, a local shop with local prices is often the best path to happiness and therefore worth the extra price. If you cannot find anything local to try on, then find somewhere that includes the return postage in the price.

If it were me, I would not be too bothered about a windproof membrane in the city (Chicago notwithstanding), or the fact that it was not what everybody else is (or was, if your are cutting edge trendy) wearing for 'black' and thus I would have even more choice from which to choose a softshell jacket.

I think marmot softshell, the windproof, is nice. But MHW bonded softshell (not membrane) is also really nice and MHW jackets have an excellent fit in my opinion (Patagonia can be baggy, sleeves too long; Arcteryx can be too big in the shoulders, and so on).

Good luck.

Edit: I was looking at the titanium, which is dark grey. Edit: even the black does look dark grey on my monitor (compared to the lining, which looks black), so maybe get your monitor calibrated first.

April 23, 2018
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