Terra Nova Laser
Ease of Setup: ok
Price Paid: $270
The customer service is worse than the tent, and here is what I reckon of the tent (cut and paste from a letter to Terra Nova):
During the trip the tent has been used on 30 occasions. Over a 2 month period 10 times in Chile, then following storage for 4 months, 20 times down the coast of California over a further 2 month period.
It is evident by the condition of the tent that we have endeavoured to look after it during this time (i.e. groundsheet still good etc.).
We did however unfortunately put some very small punctures in the outer tent when we once left the sharp tent pegs in the tent bag when carried on the back of our bikes.
However, after 20 or so uses the zip to the inner tent became problematic, and soon was unable to close the interior door at all. I did try and pinch the zipper with pliers but this had very little effect, and we had to resort to using 15 bulldog clips to close the inner door towards the end of our trip.
Soon after the inner door totally failed, one of the outer zips also failed on the outer door.
So after a relatively small number of uses our £270 tent is useless.
Its also worth noting that one or two of the entry points for the tent poles are looking a little frayed and I suspect will also start failing in the near future.
In addition, the large panels between the poles invariably sag in the slightest moisture making the tent not very water-proof, an issue we also suffered from on our trip.
Design: Single pole three season tent
Ease of Setup: A doddle to put up
Weight: 1.125 kg
Price Paid: £200
Possibly the lightest tent going for backpacking, but that doesn't affect its strength. It has a single pole design and an inner and outer. Plenty of room for two people and when split between you, you only carry about 500 grammes each! The tent feels insecure in winds but i used it in 40mph gales and although a scary night! it stood up and didn't get damaged at all. I have used it in winter and summer, and it is an excellent tent made just for backpackers. Plenty of room for cooking (can be done with porch shut) and loadsa room to keep a 100ltr backpack in.
Weaknesses, flysheet seems a bit slack in places, could do with some guy-ropes on the flysheet sides but apart from that! there aren't any.