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Old 09-12-12, 12:01 PM   #1
antokelly
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sleeping matt query

Are there many folk here using the Thermarest Neo Air sleeping matt and if so whats your honest oponion on it i'm looking for a matt that works really well packs small and is light and doesn't cost a fortune.
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Old 09-12-12, 12:17 PM   #2
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IDK, tried Exped Syn Mats? insulated air mattress, less money than their Down filled line.
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Old 09-12-12, 12:21 PM   #3
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The NeoAir meets all except those requirements except "doesn't cost a fortune". That said I liked my original 20x72" NeoAir very well, but it developed a bulge. Cascade Designs graciously replaced despite the fact it was out of warranty.

I like my replacement one even better. I currently have the XLite model, which I think will likely be less prone to the bulge problem. Great piece of gear IMO. It is the lightest, most comfortable, smallest packing sleeping pad I have seen. It is a long way from the cheapest though.

Some folks complain that it makes a bit of noise when you move around on it. When testing it indoors, on a hard floor, without a sleeping bag it is noisy, but I found it to be fine in actual use.

I also found that in hot weather I stuck to it if I didn't wear a shirt, but a thin light tech tee shirt solved that issue.
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Old 09-12-12, 12:25 PM   #4
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Thanks lads, i do have the exped down matt 7 fantastic bit of gear but to bulky for lightweight packing.
i'm defo leaning towards the neo air dont mind if it's noisy
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Old 09-12-12, 04:03 PM   #5
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I bought a used NeoAir, it developed a small leak on a seam, I tried to patch it, and failed. Cascade Designs sent me a new XLite as well.

Staehpj is right on all counts, it's fantastically light and comfortable, and the noise thing doesn't really bother me in use. If you want something light, it's hard to go wrong with the NeoAir. If you find the noise bothers you, a pair of ear plugs is a great multi-use item.
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Old 09-12-12, 04:41 PM   #6
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I bought a used NeoAir, it developed a small leak on a seam, I tried to patch it, and failed. Cascade Designs sent me a new XLite as well.

Staehpj is right on all counts, it's fantastically light and comfortable, and the noise thing doesn't really bother me in use. If you want something light, it's hard to go wrong with the NeoAir. If you find the noise bothers you, a pair of ear plugs is a great multi-use item.
out of curiosity what kinda noise are we talking about
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Old 09-12-12, 06:46 PM   #7
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out of curiosity what kinda noise are we talking about
That would be "Matt."
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Old 09-12-12, 08:23 PM   #8
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if you can sleep with a radio playing white noise at a very high volume next to you all night, then you can sleep on a neo-rest
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Old 09-12-12, 08:57 PM   #9
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if you can sleep with a radio playing white noise at a very high volume next to you all night, then you can sleep on a neo-rest
It's more like your cat playing with the cellophane window of an envelope on the dresser. Ask me how I know.
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Old 09-12-12, 09:14 PM   #10
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I just bought the Neo Air Trekker, and yes, it was expensive but apparently they have a good warranty. It was quite comfortable, and packs well. A fellow bike camper told me to roll it twice, to get the air out before folding it in thirds lengthwise to roll it up to fit it into its bag. So far, so good. I didn't notice much noise, then again, I had my ear buds in, listening to music.
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Old 09-12-12, 10:47 PM   #11
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the noise doesnt bother me, I agree with Pete's statement that in real life with a sleeping bag on it, its not an issue (at least not for me sleeping on it, and not for my better half sleeping beside me)
and yes, its kinda a crinkly sound. I was very fortunate in getting one at a good price as one of our family thermorests had a bulge in it, and they upgraded the replacement to a NeoAir, so I paid the difference in price between the lightest regular thin ones and it (excellent warranty service frankly, but we do have six thermorests in the family, so they did good on keeping a customer happy)
I sleep really well on it, and as a side sleeper Im really happy with that, especially as the years trundle along....

I do wonder how it will be over time for resisting punctures, my feeling is that one ought to be more careful with it than the older style thermorests.
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Old 09-12-12, 10:49 PM   #12
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That would be "Matt."
chuckle, I was trying to come up with some way to kid Anto about mat vs Matt, but you did a great job.
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Old 09-13-12, 04:56 AM   #13
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The noise has apparently been enough to put some folks off. It is a crinkling sound. At least one person who complained about it said that when he actually used it the sound was a non issue. I can't even tell you if my newer xLite NeoAir crinkles or not, I have not noticed.

DJB wondered about durability. The first generation model that I owned had no problem with leaks, that despite using it for the Southern tier where there are lots of thorns and other sharp and abrasive stuff. Others have said their early NeoAir did have had leaks though. The latest models look to me as if the material might be more durable, even the lighter xLite.

The first ones had problem with developing bulges where the inner baffles came loose, but I have not heard reports of this with the newer ones.
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Old 09-13-12, 05:11 AM   #14
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My opinion is:

glorified air mattress. like sleeping on a pile of jello.

however, as the smallest packing sleeping mat i've found, its the one i frequently use.

I do prefer the sleeping comfort of the Prorests much more than the NeoAirs.
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Old 09-13-12, 08:10 AM   #15
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My opinion is:

glorified air mattress. like sleeping on a pile of jello.
glorified air mattress it certainly is, no doubt about that.
But while it does feel jello-y (especially as I tend to inflate it rather low) the proof in the jello-pudding is that when I have it inflated at a lower inflation, I can sleep on my side and not have hip or shoulder pressure points, hence I sleep well. I guess any mat can do that, but the fact that my Neoair is about 3 inches thick means that it is better for side sleeping than my less thick older style thermorests.
If other models or brands have thicker models now, I'm sure they work just as well. If I was buying a bunch of camping equipment from scratch as younger first time tourers might be, I'd probably save a hundred bucks and get a diff mat that would be fine as well. There certainly seems to be lots of options out there nowadays.
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Old 09-13-12, 09:55 AM   #16
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so should i buy the neoair extra light or the standard one ,
and no funny comments djb
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Old 09-13-12, 10:02 AM   #17
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so should i buy the neoair extra light or the standard one ,
and no funny comments djb
Not sure there is a standard one these days. The old "standard" one is no longer made as far as I know, but you may still find them, possibly at close out prices. I think the newer models probably represent a step forward. I like the Xlite, but the Trekker, All Season, and Xtherm all fit different sets of needs.
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Old 09-13-12, 11:08 AM   #18
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Looks like X Lite shaves off corners , 3/4 length stops at your hips.

a horizontal tube air mattress , .. interesting.. does it roll up smaller
than one with lengthways tubes like Exped?
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Old 09-13-12, 11:48 AM   #19
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a horizontal tube air mattress , .. interesting.. does it roll up smaller
than one with lengthways tubes like Exped?
Yes, but it is a bit hard to absolutely compare since both offer different models with different R values and so on. It looks like the Xlite packs slightly smaller than the Exped non-insulated models and a lot smaller than the down ones. It also looks like the Xtherm is also smaller than the Down Exped. The difference is less, but still significant.

Last edited by staehpj1; 09-13-12 at 11:51 AM.
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Old 09-14-12, 03:23 PM   #20
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emm seen the video demo on that neo air matt, man it sure is on the noisy side right enough,
and i'm thinking seen as i'm a very bad restless sleeper under canvas i think i'll give that Matt a miss.
would the exped ulight syn matt be a better option .
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Old 09-14-12, 03:49 PM   #21
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Ant, are there any nearby stores where you could actually see opened mats and lay your Irish arse down on them to see how they feel? That would be the.obvious best scenario, but I guess if not, makes it harder to.get a real impression.
I would second.or third the.point about how a mat on a hard store floor will not really represent the real world sound factor.
Good luck , hope you can actually lie on some to see how they are.
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Old 09-14-12, 04:03 PM   #22
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Yeah - -
Matt's hard working,
small and light,
doesn't cost much on a date,
but I never get much sleep.
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Old 09-14-12, 04:10 PM   #23
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Ant, are there any nearby stores where you could actually see opened mats and lay your Irish arse down on them to see how they feel? That would be the.obvious best scenario, but I guess if not, makes it harder to.get a real impression.
I would second.or third the.point about how a mat on a hard store floor will not really represent the real world sound factor.
Good luck , hope you can actually lie on some to see how they are.
We were in a Swiss outdoor shop the other day which had an inflated demo Neo Air. I've been in others such as Australia and Canada that have the inflated mats they sell on display (although not the Neo Air). I would expect for the cost that a shop should at least inflate one so a prospective buyer could check it out.

As to the Neo Air, I am not sure. I am happy with the Expeds we've got, and the principles of insulation are different between the two makes. But I just can't get over the feeling the outer shell on the Neo Airs is somewhat more fragile that I'd like. I can understand the noise factor, too, just by rubbing the inflated mat between thumb and finger.
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Old 09-15-12, 04:16 AM   #24
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Ant, are there any nearby stores where you could actually see opened mats and lay your Irish arse down on them to see how they feel? That would be the.obvious best scenario, but I guess if not, makes it harder to.get a real impression.
I would second.or third the.point about how a mat on a hard store floor will not really represent the real world sound factor.
Good luck , hope you can actually lie on some to see how they are.
Dublin i guess is the nearest place but i don't go near it to busy for me i'm a country boy , but yeah i hear what your saying, when i done my disastrous irish tour
bikepacker was using the exped synmat i was vey impressed at how small it was (IS) and i think it's about 4ins debth easy enough to inflate but man is it noisy, i woke up in the middle of the night thinking i had rat's in my tent frightened the life out of me
but it was just bikepacker tossing and turning all bloody night.and his tent was 50 feet from mine.
wonder do the experts ever take into consideration when there making these new models the noise factor obviously not.
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Old 09-16-12, 12:57 AM   #25
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I used a Exped AirMat UL on a weeks touring I did a couple of weeks ago. Pack size is excellent as is weight and I think it might be a bit cheaper the Neoair. I found it very comfortable.
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