Editors' Choice 2010: Soto OD-1R Micro Regulator Stove

Cook anywhere, anytime with this innovative ultralight. “I brewed three cups of tea in a biting, swirling wind at just under 14,000 feet in Rocky Mountain National Park,” says one tester. “And the Soto achieved a rolling boil in less than five minutes.” Try that with any other canister stove and you’ll likely be drinking iced tea. The problem with most models: When ambient temperatures dip below freezing, vapor pressure inside the canister drops too, causing weak heat output. Solution: The OD-1R employs a dime-size fuel regulator inside the burner to maintain a steady flow of gas regardless of internal pressure, which keeps heat output constant in cold and high conditions. It even works when the canister nears empty (which causes decreasing pressure as fuel is burned). In our controlled tests (June 2009), in temps between 15°F and 30°F, boil times varied from 4.5 to 6 minutes—30 to 50 percent faster than any other stove in the test. Plus: It lights instantly via a piezo igniter; stable supports handle three-quart pots; and it packs smaller than palm-size. It doesn’t have an integrated windscreen, but after a storm-lashed Olympics trek during which the flame never failed, one tester said, “It doesn’t need one.” $60; 2.5 oz.; sotooutdoors.com

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