Originally Posted by jello24
If I had an unlimited budget I would buy a Volcom Goretex jacket or a Burton AK. or any Goretex jacket for that matter.
Realistically, I buy whatever looks good. Right now I use both Analog and Sessions jackets. You can definitely find better performing jackets, but I've never been soaked in either brand.
The more "fashionable" a brand is... the more it probably can get away with shoddy materials in their mid/lower wear and people will still buy it to look "steezy." For that reason, I generally avoid recommending Oakley, Volcom, Analog (and Burton to a lesser degree) as you are often paying more for the brand name and the style than the actual performance.
Arcteryx is top-end, some of the best stuff you can buy... but priced that way too. I got it for my wife because she gets cold very easily and I'd rather pay now... than "pay" on the slopes.
Luckily, there was summer sale on backcountry.com (30-40%) as Arcteryx isn't as popular among mainstream snowboarders/skiiers.
I have a Burton AK Cyclic jacket with Goretex and it is good, but again pricey (I grabbed mine 40% off). I haven't like the pants Burton has been making as they tend to rip at the butt seam (pretty common if you are failing on your butt a lot like me
I am currently using a pair of Stoic pants
that are solid after two years of "abuse". They are not quite as waterproof as Goretex, but have handle plenty of wet snow storms. However, Stoic's fit is very slim athletic (I'm 5'9" 150lbs with a 30" waist) - so it might not be for everything. I also have a Stoic puffy jacket that I absolutely LOVE. It not down or waterproof, but it so comfy and reasonably warm that I wear this thing virtually every day of the year. My friend has the Stoic Bombshell jacket
and really likes it.
Columbia and Marmot are good too, if they are on sale.