Men’s Premium Suits [priced above $450]

21 May 2007 0 Share

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Premium suits above $450. Most brands offer a suit that includes all their best features, their best materials, seals, technology, etc. It’s like the car manufacturers - they don’t advertise their lowest priced car, they always advertise the premium one with all the features so that the consumers get the idea that the brand produces the best quality product.

Brand/ Model materials fit seams seals zip kneepads fashion extras Total
O'Neil - Psycho 20/20 10/10 10/10 20/20 10/10 7/10 9/10 10/10 96/100
Rip Curl - The Bomb 2 19/20 10/10 10/10 19/20 7/10 9/10 10/10 10/10 94/100
O'Neill - Mutant 16/20 9/10 10/10 16/20 9/10 10/10

Brand: O’Neill
Name: Psycho 2 3/2 Steamer
RRP: $579.95
CW Rating: 96/100

materials

Material used: 100% Ultraflex. O’Neill have developed a superstretch material called Ultraflex XDS and they claim it to be the most ‘gumballistic and insulative neoprene available’. They’re right – it is the best. They include firewall chest and lumbar panels internally and smooth skin on the chest and back externally. The rubber feels epic on this suit - stretchy, durable and warm. 20/20

psycho
fit

Fit: really comfortable and skin like fit - it hugged the body. 10/10

seams

Seams: GBS, you can’t see the seams as they are liquid taped on both sides. 10/10

seals

Seals:Double Fluid Seam Weld (liquid tape on both sides of the seam). Also extra wrist and ankle seals, that flip back.  This helps to stop water entering. . Works really well. 20/20

zip

Zip: Back Zip with the Zen Zip Closure System. This feature is great. O’Neill build their internal zip flap/seal as part of the main body of the suit. The zip is added later on to the back of the suit. Hard to explain but it works wonders for waterproofing and flexibility.  10/10

kneepads

Kneepads: Plasma Padz (Stitchless knee). Probably the only area that this suit could improve. These knee pads slipped around the side a little due to the material being too stretchy. 7/10

fashion

Fashion ratin

Brand: Rip Curl
Name: The Bomb 2
RRP:  $549.95
CW Rating: 94/100

materials

Material used: Rip Curl have developed the Elastomax2 neoprene which is probably the lightest and most flexible on the market. They have also developed an external coating that is water repellent for their double lined material. The water beads off this coating and lessens wind chill factor. 19/20

psycho
fit

Fit: Really great fit in this suit, definitely one of the most comfy on the market. No seams on the shoulder panel. 10/10

seams

Seams:  GBS, great looking seal and flexible seams. 10/10

seals

Seals:  Liquid tape internally. Rip Curl also have the Batwing that seals the zip, this has a detachable neck, so if you don’t want it unbutton and discard. This is a great system. 19/20

zip

Zip: Back zip. There is a little area at the bottom of the zip that may sometimes trap water (chest zip system available). 7/10

kneepads

Kneepads: Great kneepads, strong but flexible. 9/10

fashion

Fashion rating: The Mick Fanning blue colourway is available, great looking rubber. 10/10

extras

Brand: O’Neill
Name: Mutant 3/2 Steamer RRP: $529.95
CW Rating: 90/100

materials

Material used: 100% Stretch neoprene 70% Ultraflex DS (one grade under the O’Neill Psycho) and 30% Fluidflex neoprene. Firewall (Hollow Yarn) internally on the chest and lumbar Panels. Smooth skin on front and lower back panels. Still quite a flexible neoprene compared to most on the market. 16/20

psycho
fit

Fit: Great fit and cut, really feels like O’Neill has concentrated on their cuts. 9/10

seams

Seams: GBS, looks like a great strong seam. 10/10

seals

Seals: Fluid Seam Weld (Liquid tape on internal seams) and wrist and ankle seals. 16/20

zip

Zip: Shoulder Zip (zips are YKK) system is a little tough to initiate the zip, but by the third or fourth time you get the hang of it. 9/10

kneepads

Kneepads: Krypto Padz (neoprene knee panel) tough and flexible. 10/10

fashion

Fashion rating: Comes in a great Olive or Red colour way, or all black if you are too cool for colour. A great looking suit fashion wise. 10/10

extras

Extra: De

Brand: West
Name: Lotus 1001 3/2mm Steamer.
RRP: $499.95
CW Rating: 86/100

materials

Material used: 100% ultra span double lined stretch neoprene. Pyro-fibre hollow weave internally on chest. Smooth skin on back and chest, plus an external coating called Glide skin which is a layer of latex, which repels water and gives extra strength. 17/20

psycho
fit

Fit: Great feel when wearing this one, maybe a little larger fit than other brands which would suit the bigger builds. 9/10

seams

Seams: GBS looks pretty tough and strong. 8/10

seals

Seal: Liquid tape (West’s Fluid Seams Technology) internally on the top half and externally 100%. Great neck seal with silver smooth. West’s zip seal system comes over your neck and doesn’t let water into the suit when you’re duck diving. 19/20

zip

Zip: Metal YKK, seams durable and strong. Water exit holes at bottom of zip. 7/10

kneepads

Kneepads: Plasma skin on “k” foam. Holds still and is flexible, probably the best on the market. 10/10

fashion

Fashion rating: Pretty good looking suit, I like the paneling. 7/10

extras

Brand: Triple X
Name: Titanium Mega-Stretch 3mm Steamer
RRP: $459.99
CW Rating: 82/100



materials Material used: Titanium Stretch Neoprene that is double lined. Has Titanium hollow fibre material internal lining over 100% of the body, that is soft on the skin and very warm. 16/20 psycho
fit Fit: Great fit, one of the best on the market for my body. 9/10
seams Seams: GBS. 8/10
seals

Seals: Liquid tape around zipper to stop water leakage, small internal flat, but zip still has a really good seal with drainholes. This work very well. 17/20

zip Zip: Back Zip, WRS-Blue (the latest in offset teeth zips helps to prevent water leaking through it). 8/10
kneepads

Kneepads: Very hard wearing, but also very stiff. 8/10

fashion

Fashion rating:  Back in black only. 6/10

extras

Extra: Available online.  Cushy feeling all over internal lining. 10/10

made in

Brand: Billabong
Name: Solution Platinum 302
RRP: $649.95
CW Rating: 78/100


materials Material used: Billabong Airlite neoprene is double lined neoprene. The Solution Platinum uses Japanese materials. Smooth skin on chest. The internal fabric is a Japanese hollow fiber jersey in diamond pattern, its loose weave and high pile has a real woolly feel to it which is warm, but seems to hold a little more water. 18/20 psycho
fit

Fit: Knees seemed to slide around a little, other than that, great. 8/10

seams

Seams:  GBS strong even looking seaming  9/10

seals

Seals:  Taped at all critical junction points internally which helps to strengthen the areas that take most of the stress. Includes Silicon Grippers around the wrists and ankles (these are great) and also a glide skin collar. Be better if it was fully sealed. Billabong also has the Solution Entry System with is an internal membrane behind the zip which works well. 12/20

zip

Zip: PK Zip (Offset Teeth) for Back Zip and also has a Zip-Free entry system. 8/10

kneepads

Kneepads: 100% Silicon transfer knee pad applied to a high grade foam panel. 8/10

fashion

Fashion rating: The Solution Gold looks better than the Platinum. 7/10

Brand: Hurley
Name: Freedom 302 Frontzip
RRP:  $579
CW Rating: 76/100

materials

Material used: Chest front 3mm Nike Sphere (smooth skin), double lined lower front/back 3mm Exoflex superstretch, arms and legs 2mm Exoflex superstretch. Internal thermo lining on chest, red. 17/2017/20

psycho
fit

Fit: Needs a little more tweaking on the shoulder fastening system. 6/10

seams

Seams: GBS 8/10

seals Seal: SCS Ballistic Tape (liquid tape) internally. Didn’t seem to be as flexible as some of the better brands. 16/20
zip

Zip: Shoulder fastening systems is good.There was a little bunching around the velco, but overall pretty easy on & off front zip system. 7/10

kneepads

Kneepads: Resin ink, the kneepad slipped around the side of the leg a little. 7/10

fashion

Fashion rating: Cool internal camo print. 8/10

extras

Extras: Comes in a loud camo colourway for a few extra dollars, that’s if you want it (it’s very loud). 7/10

Brand: Quiksilver
Name: Cell 6 3/2 GBS HFT
RRP:  $499.95
CW Rating: 74/100






materials Material used: Internally lined with HFT, plush thermo material on chest with nice cord looking knit. 100% hyperstetch double lined. Smooth skin on back and chest. 17/20 psycho
fit Fit: Average fit due to less seams, I would suggest getting a tighter fit than normal, very average fit on the neck, could feel the Velcro. 6/10
seams Seams: GBS, less seams on the cell, so less chance of water seepage. 7/10
seals Seals: 100% Liquid tape internally, pretty strong and flexible. 14/20
zip Zip:  Back zip with a reasonable sealing system behind it, with a neck attachment. 7/10
kneepads Kneepads: Great tech look on the kneepads, they slip to the side a little due to the less seams. 7/10
fashion Fashion rating: Great lines on the suit due to not as many panels as most suits. Cool internal print so the suit looks good when it is drying! 9/10
extras Extra: Less seams means more flexibility. 7/10

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