Friday, April 24, 2009

ScotteVest (SeV) Fleece 5.0

ScotteVest makes geek clothing. These multi (and I do mean multi) pocket garments are relatively expensive but they are comparable with most good clothing lines when on sale. There is a standard 20% off code that will work offered through the TWiT podcast network (Code: TWITLIVE).

I bought the ScotteVest Fleece 5.0 (SeV) during their silent 40% sale that brought the price to $90 for the 3XL. That’s comparable to similar items sold by companies like REI and North Face so I decided to take the plunge. One word of warning when buying during the sale is that there are no returns accepted so you’ll want to make sure that you really want what you are thinking of buying.

The jackets are good, really well made, excellently finished. I’m not a fan of the fleece that they choose; I prefer the one offered by REI that feels a little more robust. The SeV fleece is very soft, very comfortable but a little thin and looks like it could rip pretty easily. That said, I haven’t ripped mine and haven’t heard that this is a real problem with the jacket. This minor complaint is just a personal preference issue though; I’d guess that as many people would prefer the SeV as the REI.

The fit is a little on the large size, perhaps a half size larger than standard. But this is a good thing given that the jacket is designed to hold a lot of gadgets. You certainly wouldn’t want it to be too tight.

The sleeves are a little shorter than standard, perhaps a half inch short when compared to other jackets I have. Zipping them off gives me the ability to wear the jacket as a vest which is a nice addition.

Most of the pockets are well placed and well thought out. Those that need a clear cover to see the contents have them. There are pockets for glasses that contain leans cleaners. There are wire holders through which you can route headphone cables and keep them in place. Very nice.

The one complaint I have is with the pockets for the headphones. The Apple headphones, although they don’t offer the best audio quality, are probably the most ubiquitous, especially amongst SeV customers. I tried to route the stock iPhone Touch headphones through the neck and into the holders on the side. They won’t fit. They’re too short by about two inches. I can’t find a way to make them work so they just dangle there. Not good.

There are a lot of pockets. The web site claims 24 pockets. I don't think I've found them all yet but there are cards in all of the larger pockets giving me an idea of where they are and for what they can be used. A nice touch.

So overall, I like the jacket. It’s a little on the expensive side, even with the discounts. I’d say $75 would be a fairer price - this is a fleece jacket after all. I did get in a little trouble buying the jacket with Mrs. Khan though. She wants one of their travel vests and was not happy I didn’t tell her about the silent sale. I guess I'll be a return customer when their next sale is announced.