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conrad74
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PostThu Dec 27, 2018 8:50 pm 
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Curious to get your opinions when you see a list like this...

https://www.bestreviews.guide/backpacking-tents

I didn't recognize any of these brands except for Kelty at #9. Where's MSR? Where's REI? Where's Big Agnes, Zpacks, Marmot, etc? I went ahead and researched every tent and brand to try and understand this list.

Here are a few things that stand out:

1) Turns out the #1 tent on this listed is from a company called Hyke and Byke, started by 3 engineers, who found out after calling manufacturers for the most well known tent brands that tents and gear are way overpriced. They went ahead and created this tent that sells for $89. But, it does weigh upwards of 4.5 lbs for a 2p.

2) The #6 tent by Closenature is called a an ultralight waterproof camping tent and weighs well over 5 lbs. I hate it when so called backpacking companies use the term ultralight when it isn't anything but.

3) The TNH 2 person tent at #3 is a respectable 4.6 lbs which isn't bad considering the price is $99.

Initially I was like WTF, but maybe some of these companies are trying to take advantage of technology and not needing warehouse space, middle man, etc and trying to shake up the industry in a legit way? What are your thoughts about this list?

OR, maybe I'm being a little to naive...

I found this link on that monster of a review site which ranks the 10 best MSR tents. It turns out that the Thermarest pad and Nemo are MSR tents. Really?

https://www.bestreviews.guide/msr-backpacking-tents

Maybe both lists are just bs?
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PorcupinePhobia
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PostThu Dec 27, 2018 11:09 pm 
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As newer, lighter materials become more common, they get cheaper. Lighter poles and fabrics get used in cheaper knock-off tents. As more factories over seas obtain the means to produce more complicated, better quality stitching that translates to more panels for cheaper, better designs are more readily available.

The areas that I'd be most skeptical of in a "cheap" tent are the coatings on the waterproof fabrics and the zippers, and maybe the quality of the aluminum in the poles. That doesn't mean I don't think you could make a decent tent that sells for 99$.  Only reputable long-term reviews can tell I suppose.

Also, as a tall person, I'd like to point out all the bargain tents pretty low volume and never seem to be more than 86" long. Prejudice! rant.gif

Just picked up a tall-friendly Big Agnes Windy Point 3 for 160$ in the REI clearance sale...
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Franco
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PostFri Dec 28, 2018 1:06 am 
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From that link :
Hyke & Byke Yosemite 2P Backpacking Tent (Orange) is ranked number 1 on the best Backpacking Tents list out of 112 Backpacking Tents found across the web. Hyke & Byke Yosemite 2P Backpacking Tent (Orange) was reviewed by 0 consumers, first review recorded at 2018-11-28 while most recent review was published at 2018-12-27.

The overall sentiment of Hyke & Byke Yosemite 2P Backpacking Tent (Orange) customers is 65% better than the average satisfaction sentiment of Backpacking Tents consumers. 10% of Hyke & Byke Yosemite 2P Backpacking Tent (Orange) customers would probably recommend their friend to purchase the product.


yes 0 out of 0 customers gave that tent a 65% better than ...
oh, never mind.
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Tom
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PostFri Dec 28, 2018 1:26 am 
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I'm guessing they weight "best" based on whether they can pimp a referral link.
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neek
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PostFri Dec 28, 2018 4:27 am 
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From an article I ran across while looking into some of these brands

Quote:
Alibaba is the Chinese-run inflamed sphincter of a vast manufacturing gullet that sprays sub-par and toxic gear, textiles, and parts on almost every other nation in the world.

That was written 8 years ago, so the machine has had some time to mature.  As you've pointed out, crappy review aggregation sites are happy to help out.  Amazon provides that vital link between you and the sphincter.

The top-rated company in that list was supposedly started by a guy named Brian in Colorado with a few of his engineer buddies.  Aside from a sparse web site I found no references to the company, good or bad, outside of product reviews.  Pretty clean marketing.

But to be fair...are you willing to pay 40% for something 80% as good?  Not only is the crappy stuff getting better, but the good stuff has been getting crappier in order to compete.  The lack of transparency in the modern world of Internet commerce is concerning, but the truth is out there (TM) and we owe it to ourselves to continue seeking it.
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Cyclopath
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Faster than light
PostFri Dec 28, 2018 9:50 am 
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Pretty sure this site exists to sell gear, including what's on this list.  Things don't get included because they're best - as you've noticed - they're included because the site gets a referral bonus.

What you said really does happen, though.  My ZPacks quilt is a better value than anything at REI.  People really do invent a better mouse trap, and sell it without warehouses and all the other overhead.  But when this happens, at least when it happens and someone makes something that really is a contender for best, word gets out.  Organically.  I found out about ZPacks because other backpackers were using their quilts a lot.

In the future, reviews like these will be written by AIs.
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vibramhead
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PostTue Jan 01, 2019 2:15 pm 
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I wouldn't trust a site like that.  If you want real outdoor gear reviews by people who actually know and use gear, check out OutdoorGearLab.
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Snuffy
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PostTue Jan 01, 2019 3:52 pm 
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4.5 lbs for a 2 person tent would make me skeptical right off...  smile.gif

--------------
You don't find yourself standing at the top of a mountain without having started out in the valley.
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