Made in Canada.
First of all, this is my first shell that has been through both warm and cold seasons and I have to say the fit and features are top notch. Having dabbled with an Alpha SL (pullover), I can say this shell feels truly durable while the SL is more akin to a thin bag over you. The SL on the other hand, is something I carry with me everywhere- especially in the city, while this is saved for backcountry pursuits.
The cut on this shell, while roomier, still fits me well, even with one base layer. I am 5'8" and 125lbs. and wear a small on Arcteryx size.
Having a Rho merino base, Atom SV hoody and this shell on top, all in mens small size, I can feel that Arc'teryx truly sized each layer exactly right. A First Ascent Downlight in small also fits perfectly as insulating layer under this shell- the cut is wonderful with either piece- just enough room for the insulation to loft yet the whole system remains trim.
On a warm and rainy day with a thin Phase baselayer underneath, I honestly couldn't experience much of the breathable aspect even with the pit zips wide open and a quarter of the top unzipped. I guess the humidity of the surrounding air has a lot to do with the performance- which makes sense.
On sub-zero climbs with moderate exertion, I could feel the hot air leaving the shell, albeit pretty slowly. Can't tell if the moisture is leaving through the openings or if it's actually permeating through the membrane, but the system works and I never felt saturated with heat.
Adjustments are quite intuitive and the hood sizes correctly with either a helmet, big knit hat, or no hat. I didn't even notice that each front pocket has an adjustment drawcord on the inside.
Not a drop of rain or whiff of wind has reached my core. The thing looks new, even as I roll it up into its own hood or fold it down tight often and it gets wrinkles all over. Haven't even washed it yet but the DWR is still strong even where shoulder and hip straps are.
Overall I do not regret spending on such an expensive shell that frankly sees way less use than my softshells or any other piece of clothing for that matter. I know it's always there and think of it more as reliable protection than a mere garment- and for that, any price is worth it.