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Arc'teryx Beta AR Jacket

rated 4.5 of 5 stars
photo: Arc'teryx Beta AR Jacket waterproof jacket

The Beta AR, which is an all-around, durable, pro shell jacket loaded with features that give you, the consumer, benefits. The price point of the Beta AR is in line with other jackets of the same qualities made from the same material. The difference with the Arc'teryx Beta AR, you are not just buying a jacket, you are buying into a contract for life with a company who will stand behind their workmanship and materials for the life of the product.

It is also important to realize there are other Arc’teryx jackets that may suit your needs better. I would compare the features, choose which benefits that appeal to you and your use, before going out and dropping a ton of money on a piece of gear that may not fit your needs.


  • Lightweight
  • Waterproof
  • Breathable
  • Vented armpits
  • Deep pockets


  • Non-removable hood

Arc’teryx has become a name that I learned to trust this last year.  They have many products that cover the gamut of outdoor activities, no matter what your sport of choice may be.  

One product that I made a serious investment in this year is the Arc’teryx Beta AR. The Beta AR is a bombproof jacket that will keep you dry, both from the inside, and from the outside thanks to the 3 Layer Gore-Tex Pro Shell which is guaranteed breathable and guaranteed waterproof… That simple!

Arc’teryx has a rating system that seems to confuse a lot of consumers. The AR stands for All-Around, which means that this jacket is well suited for a wide variety of sports and weather conditions. There are many other jackets rated for weather capability, packability, and weight, which can be found here

One of the reasons I decided to go with the Beta AR over another shell was due to the price point, reviews, and the benefits that would match my use. Yes, these jackets are expensive, but when you look at how the features and services of the jacket and the company relate to benefits for you, the customer, you will quickly realize that they are all they are cracked up to be.  I needed a shell that would perform all year round.

Feature one: Gore-Tex Pro Shell 3 layer, with reinforcement where needed. Benefit: Bombproof, which means that the fabric will hold up well and take the abuse for a number of years.  Reinforced fabric in high wear areas.   

Feature two: Taped seams with Tiny Gore seam tape, WaterTight zippers with zipper garages to keep them from snagging, and DWR, all which help shed water and snow to keep you dry.  Benefit:  Highly water resistant to keep you dry, no matter what the weather is like.  I am not afraid to pour water directly onto the jacket. 

Feature three: Large easy to use pit zips. Benefit: Keep cool, which will help reduce condensation, to keep you dry from the inside.  

Feature four: Athletic fit and elastic drawstrings on the hood and at waist. Benefit: Ideal for layering and taking up extra material. 

Feature five: Gusseted pits, and articulated arm design. Benefit: Allows for unrestricted arm movement no matter what your activity, whether it is making snow angels, or ice climbing.  

Feature six: Attached, adjustable, helmet compatible hood. Benefit: Adjustable drawstring helps keep the hood out of the way until you need it, and keeps it close to your helmet to prevent any peripheral vision loss.   

Feature seven: Generous pockets. Benefit: Lots of room to store things, positioned higher on the torso to promote access when wearing a pak>

Feature eight: Machine washable and dryable. Benefit: No need to walk around in a dirty jacket, or have to pay to have the jacket professionally cleaned.  

Beware; even though the fabric is waterproof, the WaterTight zippers are highly water resistant, but not 100% waterproof. Note, I have not noticed any leakage from the zippers but Arc’teryx put that out there. Of course, if the zippers are being opened and closed there will be water that can collect in the pocket in a driving rain.  

The price of the jacket is one drawback for some customers. If you find this jacket for less than $350, I would highly recommend you snatch it up! Otherwise be prepared to pay around $475. The good news: You are buying into a company that will stand behind their products. No matter what happens, Arc’teryx will replace the jacket, or give you credit to upgrade to another jacket, even many years down the road! That is the price of quality.  

I have personally worn this jacket in sideways wet snow and stayed dry, even under high physical activity thanks to the pit zips. I look forward to wearing this jacket this spring while I explore the Alpine Lakes Wilderness area of Eastern Washington, which is sure to test this jackets waterproof ability and abrasion resistance.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $250 with sales and coupons

Has become my go-to shell on big executions.


  • Solid
  • Full coverage
  • Pit zips
  • Deep pockets
  • Goretex Pro
  • Large hood
  • Fairly light weight but not a light weight


  • Price $$$$

Though I have had this shell for a couple of years. I usually only pull it out when I need that piece of equipment that can do everything. (I have a number of shells including a Beta LT.)

I find the outside material much coarser than the Beta Lt, also it has a longer length.

Of course Gortex Pro does not breathe very well so you will really appreciate the pit zips.

Which also means that it work great in the winter for warmth and venting.

It also fits very well and allows for lots of movement.

Of course it comes with all the bells and whistles that you would expect from a high end shell: adjustable hood, taped seams, zippered pockets, decent rain protection... etc

So $$$$ is the only drawback.

But it is quite a bit more than a big city fashion / rain coat.

Source: bought via a "pro deal"

Arc'teryx tough, waterproof, and roomy enough to wear a reasonable size layer underneath. Size correctly, I usually wear a medium, and the piece is spot on. I use it for hiking/trekking, but it would likely work as well for skiing, climbing and general use.

I withheld half a star because the price is a bit stiff, even on sale.


  • Rugged
  • Waterproof
  • Stylish
  • Multi-functional


  • Expensive

Here I will only add information about Beta AR's practicality. Arc'teryx obviously spent time and money picking the best materials (Gore-Tex Pro and fabric that can withstand abuse) and designing the jacket with its likely user in mind.  

The piece has pit zips. The pockets are placed to stay out of the way of a harness. The hood works with a ski helmet (I tried it) and would likely work well with a climbing helmet. Additionally, the Arc'teryx warranty gives me years of access to ripped seam repair (unlikely because they are tape sealed) and other such things.

So for most it will come down to the price. I was lucky to get 40% off so I jumped at the opportunity. Those willing to time their purchase (end of season, for instance) can likely do something similar.

So my bottom line is Arc'teryx Beta AR is a worthwhile purchase for those wanting years of use from a waterproof and wind-proof shell.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $275

This jacket never leaves my pack in the fall, winter and spring. It is a little too heavy for summer so my Beta SL goes with me instead.


  • Bulletproof
  • Great fit


  • Price

It has served me well for everything from backpacking to backcountry skiing. The outer fabric is extremely tough yet it still breathes well. The three pockets are the perfect amount without adding too much weight.

I am 5'11" and 180 lbs and a large provides room for a softshell underneath in the winter without being too large without.

As a disclaimer, I am affiliated with Gore for product testing of Gore-tex products for the purpose of product review and recommendation. I do receive items from Gore for these purposes.

Disclosure: The reviewer received a sample of this product from the brand or its representatives in exchange for a review.

Source: tested or reviewed it for the manufacturer (Kept it)

The author of this review is affiliated with Gore for product testing and review.

Amazing quality and you'll find yourself reaching for this jacket over and over.


  • Very tough
  • Amazing waterproofness
  • Very easy to layer
  • Looks great


  • The price is a lil steep

I got lucky and found mine on ebay for 200 so snatched it up. I've had my version for three years now and it's never let me down. It's always around either in my jeep or backpack.

I like this over the Alpha SV because it's more town friendly and placement of the pockets. I've had this in a downpour and was dried to the bone. I love how I can wear a Patagonia Down Sweater under it and keep me toasty down into the 20s .

If you can find one on ebay I say grab it, you will not regret it.

Source: bought it used

I thought that the Arc'teryx products would be priced out of reach until I recently found this jacket on sale. While only color the store had remaining (black) would not be my first choice, the fit and finish looked awesome. The zippers work well and the hood has lots of adjustments for a tailored fit. The inside chest pocket is very handy and the whole thing stuffs down very small.

The Gore-tex Pro shell is very light and although a little on the stiff side. The few times I've had it in the rain, it has performed perfectly.

Although I will kayak with my other shell due to its brighter color on the water, this will be my backpacking go-to shell, as well as what I will probably throw on for just running errands around town due to it being stylish.

Quality appears to be top-notch, but I'll need to report back after I've broken it in a bit.

Very happy with my purchase.

Price Paid: $289

I have had this jacket for a couple of years now. Its only exposure to the conditions was from the house to the store. However, today I decided to use it on my hike at the Congaree National Park.

It was a complete downpour and the jacket kept me dry. I wore it over my fleece and trucked through the swamp without feeling a drop on me. However, when I got back to my vehicle I noticed that some water by the seams of the jacket. Not sure if this was my own perspiration or water that had leaked in.

I also don't know the normal limitations of the Goretex Paclite fabric under a constant downpour. If you're looking for a great backpacking shell that packs really well and is rugged enough not to tear when exposed to rocks/hanging branches, I would recommend this jacket!

Fabric: Goretex PacLite
Price Paid: $299

Well built, but noisy.


  • Very light
  • Great fit


  • Noisy
  • Expensive

If you are willing to pay the extra $$$ for a very well made jacket that will last, then look into this one, or Arc'teryx in general.  This jacket is one of the best tools in my arsenal! Breathes well, water tight, lightweight, and might I say, very slimming yet well fitting. 

Also, this jacket crams to the size of a baseball when storing it in a backpack, but not long-term.

Overall i give it an A+.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $435

This hard shell is sick. Don't go with any other brand if you want quality, dependability, and performance. Teryx is ahead of their time and their stuff is well thought out. I don't give perfect ratings because nothing man-made is perfect.

The Beta AR is simple and doesn't have all of the unnecessary frills that do nothing but add weight. Please note that this jacket is hip length and is a low profile if you need something longer and looser for boarding, go with a different model.

Elbows and shoulders are reinforced for added durability. The only other brands I trust are Mountain Hardwear and Marmot...but Teryx makes the best waterproof gear that is relatively affordable.

Fabric: Gore-Tex
Fill: N/A
Price Paid: $300

I used mine first time last weekend during a night at the "Pico Oriental" (Venezuela) summit. You do not feel hot inside however the jacket deals temperatures about 35 ºF. using only a T shirt inside.

I like the weight (492 grams) easy to pack. I recommend this product only if you don't have problems because of the noisy like constructed with heavy paper.

Fabric: Gore-tex Pro
Price Paid: $299

Very resistant, light, and fits well. I use it for hiking, sea kayaking and winter camping. High quality product!

Price Paid: $549.99 CAD

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Price MSRP: $600.00
Current Retail: $600.00
Historic Range: $109.13-$600.00
Reviewers Paid: $250.00-$435.00
Weight 455 g / 1 lb
Fit Regular
Material GORE-TEX Pro / N40d Most Rugged 3L GORE-TEX PRO - bluesign Approved Material
Activity All Round
Price MSRP: $600.00
Current Retail: $359.99-$600.00
Historic Range: $169.98-$600.00
Weight 390 g / 13.8 oz
Fit Regular
Material GORE-TEX Pro / N40d Most Rugged 3L GORE-TEX PRO - bluesign Approved Material
Activity All Round
Product Details from Arc'teryx »

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