This is a gear review about the all-new Therm-a-Rest Neoair XLite NXT Sleeping Pad 2023.
At the start of 2023, Thermarest updated its very popular Neoair series of sleeping pads. They fixed the one thing that most people hated most about this sleeping mat, the noise it made when you rolled over.
I recently took the latest Thermarest Neoair Xlite NXT Sleeping Pad out for a test, keep reading the in-depth review.
Therm-a-Rest Neoair Xlite NXT Sleeping Pad Specifications
Therm-a-Rest Neoair Xlite NXT Sleeping Pad Specifications
Weight – 12.5oz / 350g (regular)
R-Value – 4.5
Temperature Rating – (5F / -15C)
> Good thermal insulation
> Small pack size
> A premium product at a premium price
The Therm-a-Rest Neoair Xlite has been the most popular sleeping pad for backpacking for more years than I can remember. I’ve had one for years and still use it regularly. That was until the newly updated Therm-a-Rest Neoair Xlite NXT was released.
Let’s just cut to the chase. The new Therm-a-Rest Neoair Xlite NXT is quiet. Gone is the crinkle sound every time you roll over at night. And gone are the days of moving your tent when you discover your campsite neighbor has a Neoair!
But just how quiet is it? When I tested the Therm-a-Rest Neoair Xlite NXT it was only slightly louder than the Nemo Tensor Insulated and Sea to Summit Etherlite, which are the quietest sleeping pads at the moment. There is still a small amount of noise when rolling over, but it is minimal and still very, very quiet.
Therm-a-Rest increased the insulation rating a little from an R-Value of 4.2 to 4.5. This is not really significant, but it is enough for many people to use this pad for winter camping instead of the much better-insulated X-Therm NXT.
The mat is 3 inches / 7.6 cm thick which is also a slight increase but the extra half inch is not really that noticeable. Having said that, this sleeping mat is very comfortable. Certainly suitable for even the fussiest of side sleepers.
It comes in 4 sizes, namely short, regular, regular wide, and large. I think the regular will be the most popular size and it is the one that I would recommend.
Overall, the Therm-a-Rest Neoair Xlite NXT is the best sleeping pad for backpacking for 2023.
The Therm-a-Rest Neoair X-Lite is at the lower end of the weight scale when it comes to the overall weight.
- Short – 11.5 oz / 330 grams
- Regular – 12 oz / 340 grams
- Regular Wide – 16 oz / 440 grams
- Large – 17 oz / 470 grams
The Therm-a-Rest Neoair XLite NXT is quite small when packed in the stuff sack. While it is larger than the best-in-class Therm-a-Rest Neoair Uberlite, it is equal to or smaller than all the other sleeping pads on the market
The Neoair X-Lite NXT has a pack size as follows:
- Small – 9 inches x 4.1 inches / 23 cm x 10 cm
- Regular – 9 inches x 4.1 inches / 23 cm x 10 cm
- Regular wide – 11 inches x 4.6 inches / 28 cm x 12 cm
- Large – 11 inches x 4.6 inches / 28 cm x 12 cm
R-Value – Warmth Rating
With an R-Value of 4.5, the X-Lite is now rated as a 4-season sleeping pad. While it is not suitable for extreme temperatures below 5F / -15C it will be suitable for most people to use in winter. For anyone wanting to take this sleeping bag into extremely cold weather, it would be best advised to upgrade to something with a higher R-Value.
The new NXT has improved internal baffles insulation that not only keeps the weight down but improves the thermal efficiency of the mat. All this combines to keep you warmer which will improve the efficiency of your sleeping bag and allow you to have a more comfortable night’s sleep.
Thickness And Comfort
With a 3-inch / 7.6 cm thickness, it is not the thickest sleeping pad on the market. But it is half an inch thicker than the previous model which adds to an increased level of comfort. It is not as comfortable as the Sea to Summit Etherlite Insulated which is 1 inch / 2.5 cm thicker but quite a bit heavier.
Side sleepers will find this pad comfortable and the Winglock valve makes it is easy to adjust the air pressure within the pad. I am a side sleeper and when I tested the pad I found it comfortable, even when I was sleeping on rocky ground.
Overall, the Therm-a-Rest Neoair Xlite NXT is not as thick and comfortable as the best-in-class Sea to Summit Ether Lite but is still very comfortable.
Dimensions And Shape
The X-Lite NXT comes in several sizes with something to suit most people. I prefer the regular size but ultralight thru-hikers may prefer the small version. While those wanting more comfort may prefer the larger version.
- Small – Short Mummy Shape – 66 inches x 20 inches / 168 cm x 51 cm
- Regular – Mummy Shape – 72 inches x 20 inches / 183 cm x 51 cm
- Regular Wide – Wide Mummy Shape – 72 inches x 25 inches / 183 cm x 64 cm
- Large – Long Mummy Shape – 77 inches x 25 inches / 196 cm x 64 cm
The Therm-a-Rest Neoair X-Lite NXT is made with 30 Denier fabric. The fabric is quite durable and during testing I found it to be quite strong and able to withstand a bit of punishment for sharp rocks. The real test will be how it performs in the desert with sharp thorns and spikey plants. I have yet to take it into extremely spikey areas and will update when I have tested further.
Overall, I believe it is at least as durable as the previous version which I extensively used and tested for many years. On the older model, I only had only one puncture when camping on the spikey ground. It comes with a repair kit which I have used in the past and can confirm it works well.
Inflation Value Type And Pump Sack
The Thermarest Neoair X-Lite NXT comes with and easy to inflate and deflate Winglock valve. And they also supply an inflation sack that makes inflation quicker, easier, and cleaner as you don’t fill the pad with your moist breath. I can’t see too many people carrying the inflation sack with them when backpacking, even if it is quite lightweight. maybe if you are in a group and using the same mat it might be a good idea. Otherwise, inflating with your own breath is easy enough. Over time, the NXT might get even quieter, that is what used to happen with the previous model. Time will tell.
The Therm-a-Rest Neoair X-Lite NXT is no longer the crinkly, noisy, annoying sleeping pad that plagued the previous version. During testing I found the noise to be much improved and almost as good as the Nemo Tensor and Sea to Summit Etherlite. But the difference between all the best sleeping pads is much lower than it was previously, so much so that there is not really much difference in sound anymore.
Like all of the best sleeping pads for backpacking, just wash the outside of the sleeping pad with a mild detergent or tech wash. You can air-dry it or wipe it dry with a clean cloth.
X-Lite NXT Vs The Rest
The Therm-a-Rest Neoair X-Lite NXT is new to the market and I am certain it will be very popular. With a decreased level of sound, increased thickness, and improved insulation it sits at the top of the sleeping pad wish list in 2023.
While other sleeping pads are lighter, quieter, cheaper, thicker, more comfortable, or warmer, this pad does everything very well without being perfect at everything. It could be said that the Neoair Xlite NXT is the second-best at everything, which is what makes it so good.
To see how this compares, read the full reviews of the Best Sleeping Pads
Price And Value
The Therm-a-Rest Neoair X-Lite NXT is not the cheapest sleeping pad on the market. But if you want a lightweight inflatable sleeping pad it will be a good purchase. Check the current prices below.
Overall, the updated Therm-a-Rest Neoair Xlite NXT Sleeping pad is a welcome improvement over the very popular previous model. With the combination of increased insulation, an extra half an inch of padding, and most importantly it is significantly quieter than the previous model.
For most thru-hikers, backpackers, and travelers this is one of the best options on the market at the moment.
Frequently Asked Questions
The recently updated Therm-a-Rest Neoair Xlite NXT is significantly quieter than the previous models and is now one of the quietest sleeping pads on the market right now.
BikeHikeSafari Gear Review Process
The author, Brad McCartney from BikeHikeSafari is a small independent adventurer and outdoor gear tester who owns and runs BikeHikeSafari.com.
BikeHikeSafari is not part of a large blog network and is proudly independent. All reviews on this site are independent and honest gear reviews of outdoor products by the author.
The author, Brad McCartney is a very experienced triple crown thru-hiker, adventurer, and bike tourer having spent 1000s of nights sleeping in a tent and sleeping bag (Read more). He was a manager of an outdoor retail store and is very experienced in what is important when using and testing gear for reviews like this.
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