Monday, November 01, 2021

New Balance TCS New York City Marathon PMV Shutter Speed Jacket Review: What Light Shows and Protection!

 Article by Dominique and Sam Winebaum

New Balance TCS New York City Marathon PMV Shutter Speed Jacket ($235)



Introduction

Dominique: The PMV Shutter Speed is a technical jacket designed for road running -  and other outdoor activities - with an outer shell that is both wind resistant and iridescent and that acts like a membrane to shield you against the elements, wind and cold, and make you visible in the dark when light, i.e., headlights and even the sun are directed at you.  I was literally blown away (no pun intended) by the sleekness of the jacket, luxurious feel inside ad out, attractive design, innovative features, functionality, comfort, and protection. This is not your basic windproof running jacket, but a high-end technical heavier weight jacket with a price tag, which is also a bit weighty, but equipped with a removable hood to lighten the jacket. It is also a commemorative jacket for the 50th NYC marathon featuring an attractive logo on the right shoulder.  

Sam and I ran the 17th edition..

Sam: Striking in its constantly changing iridescent fabric, heavy duty and full featured the Shutter Speed is for those days when the weather is raw, the light fading or gone into night, and the miles long. 


As Dominique says it is not the usual "windbreaker". It has a considerable heft reminding me of the Tracksmith NDO Jacket (RTR Review) of last year. It has a highly protective shell and a set of features (hood, velcro cuff, outer see through touch screen phone pocket, length, and rear venting) that had me running in comfort into the stout winds and rain of a Nor’Easter during my testing.


Fit and Looks

Dominique: The fit is perfect and true to size.  The jacket is akin to a “blouson,” especially the women’s version, with roughly five inches of wide elastic (two inches high) at the bottom of each side panel. This allows for some extra stretching around the hips and creates a snugger fit as well. In daylight, the wind resistant and iridescent technology woven into the fabric create a glossy look and luxurious feel which is very attractive. In short, it does not call attention as day-glow colored apparel does. 


In the dark, when exposed to luminosity, the jacket exhibits a rainbowlike array of colors with a shiny glow.  Even in daylight the color array is activated yet in more subtle tones. The Shutter Speed jacket is bound to turn heads as it keeps you warm and safe in the dark!   

Sam:  The fit is generous and long in my usual medium. 

This jacket does not sit “lightly” on the body. It makes its presence and sense of protection known given its weight and the dense almost rubbery (likely due to the iridescent coating)  feeling outer stretch woven fabric and full inner bonded mesh lining. Yet, on the go, given the generous fit and stretch its heft is not in the way in the least as it drapes from the shoulders standing off just enough from the rest of the body


I appreciated that once warm I could roll up the sleeves and secure them with the stout velcro cuff straps. Yes this is a warm water resistant jacket but one I found had very decent breathability in temperatures in the 40’s F. The luminosity features are striking. Any light day or night will change the look. 


Features and Construction


Dominique: The product details uses the term “WIND DEFY” to characterize the wind-resistant technology and heat-conserving features that makes up the jacket.  One might wonder how breathable the jacket is as a result?  

In part breathability is achieved via the back venting which is made of a mesh panel covering the entire upper back, which indeed makes this heavy duty windproof jacket quite breathable. 

The sleeves do lack breathability and my arms were a bit sweaty after a run while my upper body stayed completely dry. 

I really like the construction of the jacket, with its zip-off removable hood that is also adjustable, its athletic and comfortable fit, two large size side zippered pockets that look invisible but for the neon pulls along with an additional inner mesh pocket, cuffs with velcro straps, drop tail, and overall design. 

A notable novelty and feature is the zip chest pocket, which is made with Lucent Touch material allowing you to control your phone without having to remove it.  This is quite handy and with the phone tightly held in place, there is absolutely no bouncing.  Maybe the Lucent Touch fabric will grow on me as I mostly use my phone to take pictures when I run -- something that is not feasible through the touch screen window.  Functionality matters, yet my preference would have been for an invisible pocket to keep my phone safely in place. 


Sam: Dominique has described the features well. I agree with her that the sleeves can get sticky but I rolled them up and secured them with the velcro on the cuffs as need be. 

While I did not totally care for the shiny aesthetics of the Lucent Touch pocket at the front of the jacket I found it useful. I put my phone screen side out and facing down so if I need to glance at it or interact with it I could raise the jacket, touch the screen and swipe and touch away. 


I was very surprised how well the touch capabilities worked both wet and dry but the location sort of limits use to changing music tracks, answering calls, and quick glances. You could also face the screen inwards and turn on the flashlight, or put a headlamp in the pocket for some night illumination of the road ahead but you will not need that much to be seen by cars at night that is for sure given the reflectivity!


I do wish the pocket could be relocated lower and to the side if it could be prevented from bouncing. 


Performance & Conclusions

Dominique: A great jacket to stay warm and comfortable in when running in cold weather conditions.  As stated above, the jacket is very breathable but for the sleeves.  The jacket is not labeled as “waterproof” so when the snow comes, I need to test the level of impermeability although Sam has, since I plan to wear it cross-country skiing in addition to running.  In addition to offering a high level of protection against the elements, the Speed Jacket’s iridescent technology surpasses all that I have seen and worn.  Running as a pair -- his and hers -- in the dark would make for a fun and safe run. 

Sam: As part of my testing I ran on two stormy days with high wind, mist, and some rain and temperatures in the high 40’s F.   The combination of the dense woven exterior and light bonded interior mesh layer kept me well protected and comfortable. The rear vented caped and membrane ventilated well and the jacket absorbed little moisture. I did roll up my sleeves as I often do. 

The night safety reflectivity is second to none here as any headlights will completely illuminate your form and vehicles should be able to recognize you as a human in motion. 

And in any light, even daylight, the jacket looks incredibly cool, with constantly changing iridescent tones.  

“Flashed”

At $235 the Shutter Speed is for sure at the upper end of “run” jackets but its fit, features, and level of protection make it a versatile, stylish option for multiple activities from city wear such as spectating the NYC Marathon in not so good weather (and we hope 2021 sees nice weather), to walking and walking the dog, to of course running with the added safety features of its visibility in the dark. I might want to see a touch more light color contrast for dawn to dusk uses but that is it. 


Tester Profiles

Dominique has run for over 40 years, consistently about 25 miles per week at paces between 10 and 11 minute miles. She races rarely, but always surprises more hard core runners in her age group when she does. She has a 1985 marathon PR of 3:16 in her second marathon which at the time put her on the top 10 Swiss women’s lists. She is the mother of two grown children, both runners post college, and enjoys nordic and alpine skiing, hiking and trekking, and gardening. 


Sam is the Editor and Founder of Road Trail Run. He is 64 with a 2018 3:40 Boston qualifier. Sam has been running for over 48 years and has a 2:28 marathon PR. These days he runs halves in the just sub 1:40 range training 30-40 miles per week mostly at moderate paces on the roads and trails of New Hampshire and Utah. He is 5’9” tall and weighs about 164 lbs if he is not enjoying too many fine New England IPA.


The TCS New York Marathon Shutter Speed Jacket is Available from New Balance HERE


Tested samples were provided at no charge for review purposes others. RoadTrail Run has affiliate partnerships and may earn commission on products purchased through affiliate links in this article. These partnerships do not influence our editorial content

The opinions herein are entirely the authors'.

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1 comment:

Jeff Valliere said...

The reflectivity in the dark looks legit alien! I sometimes see a woman trail running pre dawn and has a similarly reflective jacket and I am always amazed at how far out my (admittedly bright) headlamps light it up.