If you’re a backcountry traveler who travels light and fast, and prefer to wear your transceiver in a pocket rather than a harness, this one is for you. It’s slim and trim, and the harness is sold separately.
ARVA provide CO2 impact and single-use plastic calculation for its beacons and takes older beacons back
Harness sold separately
Off / Send/ Search button not as intentionally separated as with other beacons
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ARVA Evo5: first impressions
• List price: $350 (US) / €264.90 (EU)
• Weight (including batteries, but not harness): 165g / 5.8oz
• Range: 50m / 164ft
• Antennas: 3
• Battery life: 200hrs
While the beacon has a smaller range than some others, it has a group check (to make sure your companions all have their beacons on, and set to “send”) and an auto-test diagnostic, so you can verify that yours is working properly.
The marking function and a multiple burial indicator are similar to those found in this beacon’s big brother, the Neo BT Pro. So is the return to transmit function, which puts the beacon back in 'send' mode if it senses a secondary slide based on info from a timer and also a motion sensor.
The Evo5 has interference management, which ARVA say maximizes the device’s performance in search mode when there’s electromagnetic interference by honing in on a single beacon. It’s a feature you can deactivate if you’re skiing with a posse.
ARVA Evo5: on the slopes
On test I found this flatter, wider beacon wasn’t boxy in my pocket. It slid in comfortably, and I forgot about it until I needed it in hand. At 11cm high and 7cm wide, it is one of the most compact detectors on the market. During practice searches, the screen, while small, was backlit so that it was easy to see.
I was impressed with this beacon’s feature set, but the On / Off switch made me nervous. In most beacons, switching between Off, Search and Send is a two-handed affair; you never want to switch off your beacon by accident. With this beacon, a single switch toggled between Search and Send. To turn the beacon off, I also had to hit the Flag button. It didn’t give me the confidence of other beacons that it would stay in the mode I wanted it in.
Vermont-based writer, photographer and adventurer, Berne reports on hiking, biking, skiing, overlanding, travel, climbing and kayaking for category-leading publications in the U.S., Europe and beyond. In the field, she’s been asked to deliver a herd of llamas to a Bolivian mountaintop corral, had first fat-biking descents in Alaska, helped establish East Greenland’s first sport climbing and biked the length of Jordan. She’s worked to help brands clean up their materials and manufacturing, and has had guns pulled on her in at least three continents.