We were lucky enough to get hold of a Palm Equipment Riff PFD for review at Unsponsored. The one we have here is in Palm’s signature Jet Grey colour way.
The Riff is of a slab design with a side entry system. The buckle side entry is a convenient feature that allows the user to easily put on and take off the Riff. It is designed to be simple and easy to use, ensuring that the user can quickly get in and out of the product as needed. This feature is particularly useful when you are trying to negotiate a drysuit zip when putting a PFD on.
The Riff is available in four sizes, XXS, XS/S, M/L and XL/XXL. The smallest has 50N of buoyancy whilst the larges size has 80N. This M/L has 70N of buoyancy.
The 3D anti ride-up waistbelt is a feature of this product that offers stability and comfort during use. It ensures that the product stays in place on the body, preventing it from riding up or moving around. This feature is particularly important for activities such as water sports, where buoyancy aids are commonly used.
The Easy Glide nylon straps are designed to be easy to adjust, ensuring a comfortable fit for the user. These straps can be adjusted quickly and easily, allowing the user to find the perfect fit without any hassle. The elastic strap keepers are designed to keep excess straps out of the way, preventing them from becoming tangled or snagged. They ensure that the product remains neat and tidy during use, while still allowing the user to adjust the fit as needed.
The Flex Fit feature is designed to ensure that the product fits a range of different body types. It allows the product to flex and move with the user, providing a comfortable fit regardless of their shape or size.
The Utility-draw clam shell type front pocket is a convenient storage feature that allows the user to easily access important items. This pocket is located at the front of the product, making it easy to reach and use. The velcro pocket compartment is a secure storage feature that allows the user to store important items. It is designed to hold items securely in place, while still allowing easy access when needed.
The pocket clip-in point is a convenient feature that allows the user to attach items to the product. It is designed to hold items securely in place, preventing them from falling or becoming lost.
The easy access knife sleeve is a safety feature that allows the user to quickly access a knife in case of an emergency. It is designed to hold a knife securely in place, while still allowing easy access when needed. This feature is particularly important for activities such as water sports, where a knife may be needed for safety reasons – if you are carrying a throw line you should be carrying a knife.
The neoprene padded shoulder straps are designed to provide additional comfort and support during use. They are padded with neoprene, a soft and comfortable material that helps to distribute weight evenly across the shoulders.
The reflective details are a safety feature that makes the user more visible in low-light conditions. They are designed to reflect light back towards its source, making the user easier to see.
The webbing lash point is a convenient feature that allows the user to attach items to the product using webbing straps. It is designed to hold items securely in place, preventing them from falling or becoming lost. It would be a good spot to attach a whistle.
The overall fit and finish of the Riff is great. You can see in the images that the PFD is shaped to wrap around your torso giving a really good fit even before the straps are synced down.
We are looking forward to trying out the Riff as our freestyle/playboating PFD over the next few months. But even at this stage we think that if you are not after a PFD with a rescue harness I reckon the Riff would make a pretty good choice. In the UK the Riff has a RRP of £135 but even now soon after release it can be found for a little less.