Marmot Oracle Jacket
Price Paid: $140
If you're looking for a lightweight rain jacket, you need to consider the Marmot Oracle. It’s definitely not the least expensive option at $165 MSRP. It’s also not the lightest on the market, but the Oracle may offer the best combination of features available for the price.
The Oracle definitely delivers in the lightweight category. It’s just 17 ounces and will pack down into about the size of a softball for carrying in your pack or luggage. On both the interior and exterior, there are plenty of pockets. There’s a napoleon pocket on the upper chest, two exterior handwarmers, and two interior pockets (one mesh and the other zippered). Pit zips are also part of the package.
The Marmot Oracle sets the benchmark for the category as far as I’m concerned. It works for a variety of outdoor activities and despite its light weight has proven to be fairly rugged.
There's a more complete review and some photos on my site GearGuide.
Fabric: Precip Plus
Price Paid: $165
After using cheap ponchos and PVC rain suits I finally decided that I need something better than a glorified trash bag to keep me from getting wet.
The first thing that I looked for in the jackets that I was looking at was breathability. This naturally led me to jackets made with the eVent fabric, then I would turn the tag over see the price and nearly duke a shooter in my pants. After realizing that a jacket made with eVent was just not going to happen I started to look at the Marmot jackets.
After going between the cheaper Precip Jacket and the Oracle I finally decided on the Oracle. After hiking England, Ireland and Peru it was obvious that this was the right choice. The materials and quality of the jacket have kept me dry and at the perfect temp.
The bottom line is if you are looking for a great quality, breathable, and lightweight jacket to keep you dry this is the one for you, and to be honest if you look at jackets made with eVent and then the Oracle the price of the Oracle is more than suitable.
Price Paid: $80
This jacket is awesome! I've used it for snowboarding and backpacking and it has always done what I needed it to do! The quality has been incredible so far with not even a frayed stitch to be found on it.
Overall this has been an excellent purchase.
Price Paid: $100
The '05 Oracle is very light, very waterproof, and the athletic cut fits perfectly. As always, Marmot's quality is top-notch. This jacket delivers excellent performance for the price. The core vents/front pockets ventilate beautifully and keep your stuff from falling out. I never overheated or felt clammy even during strenuous hikes.
Overall a very well-designed jacket, with two exceptions - the hood is huge and is nearly impossible to adjust to keep the brim from obscuring your vision (I flipped the brim up to get it up and out of the way), and I do not like the stowaway hood feature in the stand-up collar. It's bulky and adds unnecessary weight. If Marmot redesigned the hood/collar (to work like most of their other jackets) the Oracle may be the perfect lightweight shell! If you don't use the hood very much, you'll probably love it.
Price Paid: $150
Absoluteley great jacket. Bought it for general rainwear/biking in the rain. The first thing I noticed was the fit, it fits like a glove. Even with reaching overhead and forward the jacket doesn't ride up the back or pull tight in the arm pits. I like the fact that is has pit zips for venting and a stowable hood. Extremely waterproof, I've put it through some brutal rain and it kept me dry. Breathability could be better but with a waterproof jacket breathability can only be so high but it is quite acceptable.
Price Paid: $150
This jacket is thicker than the original PreCip, but it packs a lot more features. It's a great waterproof, breathable jacket. However, it is kind of pricey, when you can get other waterproof jackets that are just as good but are four times cheaper (but not breathable). If you got the money to spend on this jacket, then add $30 and get yourself the Marmot Rim Jacket, which is much, much better.
Price Paid: $60
The Oracle 2-layer jacket is comparable to those made with Gore's PacLite, but uses Marmot's own waterproof/breathable fabric called Precip Plus, and is seam sealed w/stowaway hood. This should keep you perfectly dry in anything short of a monsoon, and for that Marmot offers ultralight 3-layer jackets with the Gore fabrics or their own MemBrain material. Look for sales at REI-OUTLET and/or Sierra Trading Post.
Price Paid: $148
The manufacturing quality is not what I would expect from a top of the line jacket - the first time I wore the jacket, the snap button covering at the front bottom of the jacket just fell off...