Liquid point black diamond

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Designed to trim excess weight on horizontal trails and vertical alpine faces, the Black Diamond Liquid Point Shell carries all the features you expect from a GORE-TEX hardshell. The Liquid Point's lightweight material has minimal bulk that protects against unexpected alpine tempests and features zippered hand pockets for storing small essentials and cold hands. The adjustable hood slides cleanly over a climbing helmet, and two-way armpit zip vents allow for quick temperature regulation during stormy high-output days. The drawcord hem and custom-molded cuff tabs seal out intrusive moisture and cold wind when conditions get foul.
  • Adjustable, climbing-helmet-compatible hood
  • YKK Reverse coil PU coated center front zipper
  • Two-way armpit zip vents
  • Underarm gussets for added range of motion
  • Zip hand pockets
  • Custom-molded cuff tabs
  • Concealed hem drawcord
  • Size: XS-XL

Tech Specs

  • Materials GORE-TEX Paclite 2.5L, 75d plain weave face with DWR finish (125 g/m2, 100% Polyester)
  • Size Range XS-XL
  • Weight 350 g (12.34 oz)
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When we put on a Gore Tex jacket we don’t worry about getting wet. After testing dozens of them in the many Gore iterations, we’ve come to rely on them to provide solid protection. The Gore Paclite in the Black Diamond Liquid Point was no exception. In two days of heavy rain we never felt a leak. A helmet compatible hood and a high collar helped create shelter. The hand pocket zips aren’t waterproof but are hidden away. The main zip isn’t waterproof either, but it is backed by a strip of fabric and didn’t show cause for any concern. 

Paclite is not the most breathable membrane. It got swampy in the Black Diamond Liquid Point when we were racing uphill. Pit zips helped but they were a little hard to open fully.

I really like how the two hand pockets on the Black Diamond Liquid Point are neatly hidden behind a flap of jacket. It gives the shell a clean, minimalist look without sacrificing an essential feature. Another, small pocket hides just inside the main zip at chest height, perfect for keeping a phone or GPS dry and safe. The cuffs are adjustable and the hood has three adjustment points for dialing in a snug fit. The fleecy patch at the chin is a nice touch.

The Paclite in the Black Diamond Liquid Point is not the toughest membrane but with a little bit of stretch it didn’t show any signs of heavy wear or scratches after several weeks of use.

At about 15 ounces the Black Diamond Liquid Point is about average for a summer weight three-layer shell with two hand pockets and pit zips.

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Liquid Point Shell Black Diamond Apparel Spring 2015 HD
Highly packable, yet durable and protective enough for serious mountain weather, the Liquid Point Pants feature a clean design and GORE-TEX® PACLITE® shell fabric to achieve that sought-after balance of durable protection and lightweight.
  • GORE-TEX 3L Active is durably waterproof/windproof and provides ultimate breathability
  • Soft to touch GORE-TEX C-Knit® backer
  • YKK Aquaguard zippers
  • Two zippered thigh pockets
  • 1/4-leg zip boot access
  • Integrated, removable belt with belt-loop waist
  • Articulated knees and seat
  • Gusseted construction
  • Internal RECCO® technology
  • Small, low-profile stretch snow gaiter optimized for touring boots
  • Cord grommets at hem
  • Primary Fabric is Bluesign approved
  • Regular
  • S-XL
  • 332 g
  • Indonesia

Tech Specs

  • Materials GORE-TEX Active 3L, 3D nylon plain-weave face with C-Knit backer and DWR finish (155 gsm, 100% Nylon)
  • Size Range S-XL
  • Weight 332 g (11.71 oz)

Point black diamond liquid

Liquid Point Shell - Men's

Designed to trim excess weight on horizontal trails and vertical alpine faces, the Black Diamond Liquid Point Shell carries all the features you expect from a GORE-TEX hardshell. The Liquid Point's lightweight material has minimal bulk that protects against unexpected alpine tempests and features zippered hand pockets for storing small essentials and cold hands. The adjustable hood slides cleanly over a climbing helmet, and two-way armpit zip vents allow for quick temperature regulation during stormy high-output days. The drawcord hem and custom-molded cuff tabs seal out intrusive moisture and cold wind when conditions get foul.

  • Adjustable, climbing-helmet-compatible hood
  • YKK Reverse coil PU coated center front zipper
  • Two-way armpit zip vents
  • Underarm gussets for added range of motion
  • Zip hand pockets
  • Low-profile, custom-molded cuff tabs
  • Drawcord hem
  • Fit: Regular
  • Size: S-XL
Best Rain Jackets

Black DiamondLiquid Point Shell Jacket - Men's

With the Black Diamond Men's Liquid Point Shell Jacket, we don't have to choose between burly waterproof protection and lightweight packability. Made with waterproof, breathable Gore-Tex PacLite, this shell easily stuffs in the bottom of our packs when it's unexpectedly sunny. Weighing 14.5 ounces, it doesn't hold us back during long approaches and multi-day backpacking trips, but that doesn't mean it won't fend off even the most unruly mountain storms. Fully sealed seams, a DWR treatment, and a water-resistant center front zipper prevent water from seeping through, while its helmet-compatible hood, adjustable cuffs, and a cinch hem batten down the hatches when the skies go from grey to black.


  • Stay protected without being weighted down with this jacket
  • Waterproof, breathable Gore-Tex construction protects you
  • Regular fit enables room for movement in the mountains
  • Underarm zippered vents allow for a quick cool down
  • Multiple pockets stash adventure essentials close by
  • Item #BLD00LI

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Over the last few years, Black Diamond has assembled an impressive lineup of outdoor gear, from ski jackets and insulation to casual lifestyle apparel. The Liquid Point is their leading performance rain jacket, built with 2.5-layer Gore-Tex Paclite and featuring a rare athletic fit (rain jackets usually err on the casual side). We took the women’s Liquid Point to rainy and windy Patagonia and were impressed by its high-end look and feel. However, performance came up a little short, especially considering the steep price tag. Below we break down our experiences with the Liquid Point. To see how it stacks up to the competition, see our articles on the best rain jackets and best women's rain jackets.

Table of Contents


Weather Protection

The Black Diamond Liquid Point isn’t your typical rain jacket. Designed to offer waterproof protection for high mountain pursuits, this shell is lightweight, trim-fitting, and more technical than much of its competition. In fact, the Liquid Point looks and feels more like a hardshell than standard rain jacket. In adverse conditions, however, the 2.5-layer Gore-Tex Paclite build and DWR finish have performed well but not perfectly. The jacket kept me dry during a few days of wet hiking in Patagonia, but the rubbing of my backpack’s straps compromised the DWR coating across my upper back almost instantly. In all fairness, moisture didn’t penetrate the waterproof membrane and my baselayer stayed dry, but this was a bit of a letdown for such a premium (and pricey) shell.Black Diamond Liquid Point rain jacket (sitting beside tent in field)

When the weather takes a real turn, it’s easy to batten down the hatches. Along with sealed seams, Paclite membrane and DWR finish, and robust 75-denier face fabric, the Liquid Point features a water-resistant front zipper to seal moisture out. Additionally, the two hand pockets are covered by the waterproof fabric, and generous flaps guard against drips through the zippers. The helmet-compatible hood also offers great all-around coverage, and a nicely sized brim helps to keep rain out of your eyes. Finally, the cuffs are easy to cinch/adjust and secure at the wrists. All in all, apart from the DWR wearing out quickly, this is one highly protective and well-equipped rain shell.Black Diamond Liquid Point rain jacket (water beading up on DWR)


Unlike Gore-Tex’s more premium offerings, Paclite is not known for its breathability. However, I tested the Liquid Point while hiking with a 30-pound load and during a particularly strenuous uphill climb to Laguna Duff in Patagonia and came away fairly impressed. I did not overheat once, nor did I feel the need to open the two-way pit zips. Additionally, the interior feel is a cut above basic 2.5-layer designs like the Marmot PreCip Eco or The North Face Venture 2, which can grow clammy and slippery inside (although the Liquid Point’s liner does feel noticeably more plasticky than 3-layer hardshell jackets). All in all, the Liquid Point offers respectable breathability for a rain jacket, but given the steep $259 price, you can get better performance in a 3-layer design like the REI Drypoint for about the same money.Black Diamond Liquid Point rain jacket (unzipping pit zip)

Weight and Packability

At 12.3 ounces for a women’s small, the Liquid Point falls at the heavier end of the rain jacket spectrum. Those focused on shaving weight can go much lighter with a model like the Arc’teryx Zeta SL (9.5 oz.) or Black Diamond’s own StormLine Stretch (8.7 oz.). However, this drop in weight does come at the sacrifice of durability. And for a step up in performance, there are a number of lightweight 3-layer models worth considering. Patagonia’s Torrentshell (12.5 oz.) and Rainshadow (12.2 oz.), for example, both offer more protection than the Liquid Point for around the same weight. But compared to other 2.5-layer builds, the Liquid Point is very competitive. For reference, it slightly undercuts the Patagonia Calcite (13.1 oz.) and Outdoor Research Aspire (13.7 oz.), two other capable Paclite designs.Black Diamond Liquid Point rain jacket (hiking uphill in alpine)

In terms of packability, the Liquid Point does not have an integrated stuff pocket or included stuff sack, and with a thick 75-denier face fabric, it’s bulkier than much of the competition. If you’re looking for a compressible rain jacket that can disappear into a corner of your pack, the Liquid Point is not it. If space is at a premium, we’d point you instead to one of the lighter designs above like BD’s own StormLine Stretch.Black Diamond Liquid Point rain jacket (tightening waist cinch)

Features: Hood and Pockets

Unlike most rain jackets, the Black Diamond Liquid Point is intended for high alpine use. Along with the athletic fit, this is seen most clearly in the helmet-compatible hood. The dome is large and can accommodate a wide variety of head shapes and sizes—helmet or not. By pulling the one-handed toggle at the back of the head (the only adjustment), the hood cinches nicely around the face and has stayed securely in place, even during high winds. You also get a stiff brim to deflect water away from your face and great coverage along the sides. All that said, while I applaud Black Diamond for the helmet-compatible hood, I’m not sold on its functionality. For rock climbing, I’d rather have a lightweight emergency shell (like the 5.6-oz. Outdoor Research Helium) or the protection and breathability of a full-blown hardshell. Unfortunately, the Liquid Point seems to strike an awkward middle ground.Black Diamond Liquid Point rain jacket (wearing hood and zipping up jacket)

In terms of storage, the Liquid Point sports two simple zippered hand pockets. These don’t feature water-resistant zippers, but generous flaps help seal rain out. However, considering the helmet-compatible hood, we would have expected the pockets to sit higher to allow access while wearing a harness or hipbelt, and we certainly wish the jacket had a chest pocket. But to be fair, this layout is fairly standard in the rain jacket market. Black Diamond Liquid Point rain jacket (hiking in mountains)

Build Quality and Durability

Black Diamond apparel hasn’t always led the pack in terms of quality, but times are changing and the Liquid Point has a very high-end, premium feel. The 75-denier face fabric is hardwearing and impressively durable, which also translates to great protection from the elements. For comparison, this beats out comparable jackets like the Arc’teryx Zeta SL (40D) and Outdoor Research Aspire (50D) without incurring too much of a weight penalty. In addition, the jacket features a clean fit and finish, sleek cuff adjustments, and streamlined zippers and pulls. Black Diamond Liquid Point rain jacket (velcro cuff adjustment)

As I touched on above, my only durability-related concern is the jacket’s durable water repellent (DWR) finish, which started wearing off after just one day on the trail. This was likely due to rubbing from my pack’s straps, but enough of the coating had worn off that drizzle began to soak into the face fabric. While DWR maintenance is par for the course with any waterproof jacket, this felt a little premature, leading to concerns about the quality of the finish. But the good news is that DWR can be restored/reapplied fairly easily and cheaply by washing and drying the jacket or by applying a waterproofing product like Nikwax TX.Direct Spray-On.Black Diamond Liquid Point rain jacket (water beading and soaking on DWR)

Fit and Sizing

One of the most notable aspects of the Black Diamond Liquid Point is its fit: unlike most rain shells, which tend to trend toward casual and boxy, BD opted for an athletic cut that feels more akin to a technical hardshell. As a result, the Liquid Point is roomy enough for layering and has great freedom of movement yet is still trim enough that excess fabric won’t get in the way. In terms of sizing, I opted for my standard women’s size small, which fits well with or without a midlayer underneath. The drop-tail hem offers nice coverage across my butt and lower back—especially great for bending down while doing chores around camp—and easy-to-pull cinches on both hips allow me to seal out the moisture evenly across the waist. I do find the arms to be particularly long, but the sleek cuff adjustments are easy to use and keep the sleeves off my hands.Black Diamond Liquid Point rain jacket (getting water from glacial lake)

Other Versions of the Black Diamond Liquid Point

We tested the women’s Liquid Point for this review, and Black Diamond also makes the jacket in a men’s version. The men’s Liquid Point tips the scales at 13.9 ounces, comes in three different colorways (both models are available in black), and also retails for $259. We haven’t had a chance to test the men’s jacket yet, but we imagine it warrants similar praise for its wet-weather performance and durable build. In addition, Black Diamond makes Liquid Point Pants in both men’s and women’s models, which feature the same 2.5-layer Gore-Tex Paclite construction and sell for $199.Black Diamond Liquid Point rain jacket (hiking in river valley)

What We Like

  • A good-looking rain jacket with a hardshell-like feel and an athletic fit.
  • Proven Gore-Tex Paclite performance.
  • With a 75-denier shell, the Liquid Point is more durable and protective than most of its competition.

What We Don’t

  • Strikes a rather odd middle ground: the look and fit of a hardshell, but without the 3-layer performance.
  • DWR finish wore off within a day of hiking with a pack.
  • At $259, the Liquid Point is expensive for a rain jacket.
  • Hand pockets are not high enough for use with a harness or hipbelt, and there’s no chest pocket.
  • Helmet-compatible hood isn’t ideal for hiking or everyday use.

Black Diamond Liquid Point rain jacket (hiking uphill in mountains)

Comparison Table

The Competition

Within the performance rain jacket realm, there’s no shortage of competition for Black Diamond’s Liquid Point. Outdoor Research’s Aspire features similar Paclite waterproofing, but to boost ventilation, the Aspire comes equipped with unique side zips that extend the length of the jacket (OR calls this “TorsoFlo Venting”). When fully unzipped, this creates a poncho-like opening for dumping excess heat. In the end, if breathability is a priority, the Aspire is an intriguing option and will save you around $50. You do give up some crossover appeal with the unique construction, but the Aspire is a good-looking option with great functionality.Black Diamond Liquid Point rain jacket (Gore-Tex waterproofing label)

Patagonia’s Calcite goes head to head with the Liquid Point. With a similar 75-denier face fabric and 2.5-layer build, both are protective and hardwearing rain shells. The Calcite tacks on a chest pocket with a DWR-treated zipper, as well as front hood adjustments that offer a better fit and sleeker look when worn without a helmet (for more, see our in-depth Calcite review). For another $10, however, the Black Diamond adds nice technical upgrades like water-resistant zippers on the arm vents and a more hardshell-like face fabric. It's a close call between the two, but the BD's more premium look and feel give it the edge for us.

Arc’teryx is one of the market leaders in shell jackets, and their Zeta SL is a very well-rounded option for hiking. It’s light at 9.5 ounces, comfortable against the skin, and reasonably weather-worthy with a 2-layer Gore-Tex Paclite build. That said, the Zeta undeniably is the more minimalist option, with a thinner 40-denier shell that’s decently robust but not as confidence-inspiring as the Liquid Point’s 75-denier build. Further, the Zeta’s 2-layer construction falls short of the Liquid Point in the breathability department, with a clammier-feeling interior and no pit zips to dump heat. That said, we love the Zeta’s clean styling and lower weight. 

From within Black Diamond’s own lineup, their StormLine Stretch is another intriguing alternative at a significant $110 less than the Liquid Point. Both jackets sport 2.5-layer waterproof constructions and include features like pit zips, climbing helmet-compatible hoods, and adjustable hems and cuffs. In parsing out the differences, the StormLine Stretch uses a less protective and premium in-house BD.dry membrane, weighs 8.7 ounces, and is the less technical option with a roomier cut and less hardwearing design. Both are well-appointed backcountry shells, and a final decision will come down to how you prioritize all-out protection (the Liquid Point wins out) versus value and comfort (the StormLine Stretch gets the edge). 
Black Diamond Liquid Point rain jacket (day hiking in mountains)

Finally, we’d be remiss not to mention Black Diamond’s HighLine Stretch Shell. At 10.7 ounces, the HighLine undercuts the Liquid Point but manages to do it with a 3-layer stretch-nylon construction that’s more breathable and protective than the Liquid Point’s 2.5-layer build (the interior is softer, too). Importantly, the HighLine also uses a new PFC-free DWR that’s not only environmentally friendly, but also designed to last longer than standard DWR. Like the Interstellar mentioned above, the HighLine is an intriguing option for climbers looking for a bit more performance but comes at a higher cost ($299).


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