Unbiased MSR Tents Review


Our review process

Purchasing a tent isn't always easy. It can be overwhelming if you don't know exactly what you need. Luckily for you, we've spent many hours gathering and analyzing information on over 500 different tents and also looked at more than 17,500 data points for each one so that you won't have to do the same research. Out of these tents, we then took another look at 16 MSR tents using our progressive artificial intelligence technology. The following article will lay out the pros and cons and show you some more relevant information you should focus on.

When it comes to choosing a tent, it's not just about whether an MSR tent is right for you, but what makes the brand unique. MSR is an American company that was founded in 1969. MSR sells a number of great products in addition to tents, like snowshoes, camping cookware, snow tools, and camping stoves. Specializing in mountaineering gear, MSR makes tents that can withstand extreme conditions. MSR tents are designed to endure through extreme temperatures, so they are perfect for campers needing tough and durable equipment. Their tents are more expensive, but are worth spending more on for campers looking for high-quality equipment that will be used frequently. MSR was awarded for their MSR Hubba NX tent series and it is always working to meet customer's expectations. Known to participate in some outreach programs, such as Adventures for Impact, MSR strives to empower the community and protect the environment. MSR is known to be an environmentally-conscious brand, so you can promote and support an eco-friendly company. Providing consumers with a limited lifetime warranty with their purchase, MSR stands by the good quality and durability of their products.

Our Top Ranking Tents:
Product NameTent TypeCapacityDimensions
Best Overall Score
1
An image of MSR 3-Person Red Freestanding 3-Season 84 X 128 X 41 Inch Tent
MSR 3-Person Red Freestanding 3-Season 84 X 128 X 41 Inch Tent
free standing
3 people
84 x 128 x 41
Runner Up
2
An image of MSR 3-Person Red Dome 21 X 7 X 7 Inch Tent
MSR 3-Person Red Dome 21 X 7 X 7 Inch Tent
dome
3 people
21 x 7 x 7
Lightweight Option
3
An image of MSR 2-Person White and Red Freestanding 84 X 110 X 40 Inch Tent
MSR 2-Person White and Red Freestanding 84 X 110 X 40 Inch Tent
free standing
2 people
84 x 110 x 40
Best for Bad Weather
4
An image of MSR 4-Person Red Dome 3-Season 93 X 86 X 44 Inch Tent
MSR 4-Person Red Dome 3-Season 93 X 86 X 44 Inch Tent
dome
4 people
93 x 86 x 44
For Camping Solo
5
An image of MSR 1-Person Red Freestanding 86 X 63 X 39 Inch Tent
MSR 1-Person Red Freestanding 86 X 63 X 39 Inch Tent
free standing
1 person
86 x 63 x 39
Our Top Ranking Tents
Customer Rating
Tent Type
free standing
Capacity
3 people
Dimensions
84 x 128 x 41
Customer Rating
Tent Type
dome
Capacity
3 people
Dimensions
21 x 7 x 7
Customer Rating
Tent Type
free standing
Capacity
2 people
Dimensions
84 x 110 x 40
Customer Rating
Tent Type
dome
Capacity
4 people
Dimensions
93 x 86 x 44
Customer Rating
Tent Type
free standing
Capacity
1 person
Dimensions
86 x 63 x 39
Best Overall Score
An image of MSR 3-Person Red Freestanding 3-Season 84 X 128 X 41 Inch Tent

With an excellent user rating, the MSR Freestanding 3-Person Tent could be exactly what you need for your next camping trip. This MSR tent features a freestanding design, meaning it can stand without using stakes. With the ability to withstand three seasons, it keeps you protected when it's rainy or windy, ideal for summer, fall, and spring weather conditions. It fits three campers, so you can have the perfect amount of space for accommodating a small group. This tent has a gear loft, so you will not need to spend time in the morning searching for your glasses or phone.

    Pros
    • Easy setup can be assembled almost instantaneously once you unpack it
    • Features a lightweight design, putting less stress on your back while trekking
    • Mesh panels provide a layer of defense against insects and bugs while letting in plenty of fresh air
    Cons
    • Lightweight tents may not stand up to rough handling
    • 3-person tents are not spacious enough for accommodating bulky equipment, plus campers
    • Freestanding design is the heaviest tent design
Runner Up
An image of MSR 3-Person Red Dome 21 X 7 X 7 Inch Tent

We've organized the key things to look for when purchasing the MSR Dome 3-Person Tent. This MSR tent features a dome design, keeping its structure, even in windy areas. It has cross ventilation, which helps you to stay cooler on hotter nights. This tent accommodates three people, making it perfect for spacious solo camping or for going with a few friends.

    Pros
    • Easy setup can be assembled almost instantaneously once you unpack it
    • Features an ultralight design, keeping your pack at a comfortable weight
    • Cross ventilation helps you to stay cooler on really hot nights
    Cons
    • 3-person tents don't offer a lot of space for gear and equipment
    • Dome design is not very comfortable for walking around inside
    • Luxury tent designs are a large investment and only suitable for experienced campers
Lightweight Option
An image of MSR 2-Person White and Red Freestanding 84 X 110 X 40 Inch Tent

If you're looking for a new tent, you might want to consider the MSR Freestanding 2-Person Tent, which is rated very highly among customers. With a freestanding design, this MSR tent can be set up anywhere. It is designed to sleep two people.

    Pros
    • Easy setup can be assembled almost instantaneously once you unpack it
    • Features a lightweight design, making it great for fast-paced backpacking and steep hiking
    • Comes with mesh panels, keeping insects out while still letting in fresh air
    Cons
    • Lightweight tents may not stand up to rough handling
    • Freestanding design requires poles to provide structure
    • 2-person tents don't have a lot of extra space for equipment
Best for Bad Weather
An image of MSR 4-Person Red Dome 3-Season 93 X 86 X 44 Inch Tent

We've outlined the important things to pay attention to when buying the MSR Dome 4-Person Tent. This MSR tent features a dome design, giving campers a good amount of space, due to its curved structure. It is designed for three-season use and has StayDry doors, making sure that the tent stays dry during bad weather. This MSR tent has aluminum poles, which can bend under pressure but are relatively simple to repair. With a bathtub design, the floor will prevent water from leaking into the tent and ensure your possessions remain dry. This tent features a gear loft and has storage pockets, keeping your items secure and safe in one convenient area. It is designed to fit four people and includes a rainfly, a carry bag, a flashlight loop, and stakes.

    Pros
    • Features an easy setup, taking as little as two minutes to assemble
    • Built to be easy to assemble, giving you a pitched tent in only a matter of minutes
    • Cross ventilation helps you to stay cooler on hotter nights
    Cons
    • Dome design provides less interior space than cabin tents
    • Bathtub floor adds extra weight to the tent
    • 3-season tents won't resist harsh wind
For Camping Solo
An image of MSR 1-Person Red Freestanding 86 X 63 X 39 Inch Tent

Go for a weekend away outdoors using the MSR Freestanding 1-Person Tent. This MSR tent features a freestanding design, making it effortless to set up and reposition depending on your preferences. It includes a footprint layer, so you can keep the floor of the tent clean and in great condition. It has a gear loft, keeping your essentials elevated off the ground and safe through the night.

    Pros
    • Easy setup can be assembled almost instantaneously once you unpack it
    • Features a lightweight design, making it great for fast-paced backpacking and steep hiking
    • Comes with mesh panels, keeping insects out while still letting in a breeze
    Cons
    • 1-person tents are only suitable for camping alone
    • Lightweight tents are designed with delicate fabrics that can tear
    • Freestanding design is the least lightweight option
Best for Livability
An image of MSR 4-Person White and Red Dome 148 X 88 X 48 Inch Tent

Set out into nature for an unforgettable camping trip with the MSR Dome 4-Person Tent. This MSR tent features a dome design, requiring only the poles to be slid into the slots for fast pitching. It has a gear loft, so you will not need to waste time in the morning searching for your glasses or phone. It has StayDry doors, protecting you from strong downpours and stormy weather. This tent fits four campers, so you'll have an enough room for your whole group to sleep comfortably.

    Pros
    • Easy setup can be assembled almost instantaneously once you unpack it
    • Features a lightweight design, putting less strain on your back while trekking
    • Mesh panels shelter you from the bugs while allowing in a nice, refreshing breeze
    Cons
    • Lightweight tents are usually less roomy than bulkier tents
    • Dome design doesn't offer as much headroom as other designs
    • Luxury tent designs are a large investment and only suitable for avid campers
Additional Picks
An image of MSR Nylon 1-Person Red Freestanding 85 X 30 X 36 Inch Tent

With the MSR Nylon Freestanding 1-Person Tent, you can plan a great outdoor adventure. This MSR tent features a freestanding design, making it easy to set up and move around depending on your preferences. It is made from nylon, so you can take it anywhere due to its lightweight fabric. It has cross ventilation, which helps you to stay cooler on really hot nights. This MSR tent has aluminum poles, which are able to support large amounts of weight and are unlikely to snap with applied force. It has storage pockets, keeping your things out of the way so you won't feel cramped or crowded inside the tent. Featuring a bathtub design, the floor will prevent water from coming into the tent and ensure your possessions remain dry. This tent is able to accommodate one person.

    Pros
    • Made of nylon, making it naturally resistant to water
    • Features an easy setup, going up faster than a traditional tent
    • Features a lightweight design, making it easy to carry in your backpack
    Cons
    • Nylon has low breathability and is prone to condensation
    • 1-person tents don't leave a lot of additional space for storage
    • Lightweight tents may not stand up to rough conditions
An image of MSR Nylon 3-Person Red Freestanding 87 X 68 X 44 Inch Tent

Let's review the MSR Nylon Freestanding 3-Person Tent, rated highly by online shoppers. Featuring a freestanding design, this MSR tent can be assembled anywhere. It is constructed from nylon, preventing the likelihood of tears and rips. This tent has StayDry doors, allowing you to continue to stay dry during a thunderstorm.

This tent has aluminum poles, which can bend under pressure but are very easy to fix. It includes storage pockets and is designed with a gear loft, keeping your camping gadgets and trail necessities elevated off the ground to safeguard against potential water damage or loss. With a bathtub design, its floor will keep water from leaking into the tent and ensure your possessions remain dry. This tent sleeps three campers and comes with a rainfly, a flashlight loop, and stakes.

    Pros
    • Made of nylon, making it naturally water-resistant
    • Features an easy setup, making it simple to pitch
    • Features a lightweight design, giving you coverage and protection without contributing too much weight
    Cons
    • Nylon has low breathability and is prone to mildew
    • Lightweight tents are designed with delicate fabrics that can tear
    • 3-person tents don't have a lot of extra space for equipment
An image of MSR Waterproof 2-Person Green Freestanding 18 X 14 X 5 Inch Tent

We've outlined the important things to look for when purchasing the MSR Freestanding 2-Person Tent for your next family camping trip. With a freestanding design, this tent can be assembled anywhere but needs poles to hold it up. It features flysheet vents, which let in lots of fresh air to keep the tent at a comfortable temperature. This MSR tent has aluminum poles, which are highly durable and are unlikely to break with applied pressure.

This tent is designed to sleep two people. It is designed with waterproof materials to provide excellent weather protection if you get caught in a rainstorm. With a bathtub design, its floor will keep water from leaking into the tent and ensure your possessions remain dry. This tent comes with a rainfly and stakes.

    Pros
    • Lightweight frame means it will fit in your pack easily without adding a lot of weight
    • Features an ultralight design, keeping weight to a minimum
    • Mesh windows promote fresh airflow
    Cons
    • Lightweight tents are susceptible to ripping due to the delicate fabric
    • Freestanding design is the heaviest tent design
    • Bathtub floor contributes more weight to the tent
An image of MSR 2-Person Light Blue Quick Pitch 3 X 11 X 15 Inch Tent

The MSR 2-Person Tent has sealed seams and storm flaps for maximum dryness and safety during any weather conditions. This MSR tent comes with a polyurethane coating, providing protection from anything from a slight shower to a large thunderstorm. It has storage pockets, so you can arrange all your extra belongings in an easily accessible and convenient area. This tent is designed to sleep two people and features Quick Pitch setup, which is a fun way to camp for beginners. It includes a carry bag and stakes.

    Pros
    • Easy setup can be assembled almost instantaneously once you unpack it
    • Features a zip vent door, improving the air circulation inside the tent
    • Mesh panels promote great airflow
    Cons
    • Polyurethane coating is susceptible to peeling off the tent surface after limited use
    • 2-person tents don't offer extra head or side room
    • Expensive tent designs are not budget-friendly for novice campers
MSR Tents: Helping You Make Your Choice:
Which Pole Material Best Suits Your MSR Tents?
Tents with Aluminum Poles

We recommend you check out an MSR tent with aluminum poles, like this one. The aluminum poles will only bend if overloaded beyond their safety limit, which can be easily fixed. These poles are very strong yet lightweight, making them convenient if you're constantly moving campsites. One downside is that they are susceptible to corrosion, so they aren't suitable for saline environments.

Tents with Carbon Fiber Poles

If you are looking for an MSR tent, there are two options with carbon fiber poles to choose from that we think you'll love. Carbon fiber poles are durable, resisting exceptional winds. Something to consider is that the poles are not flexible, making them best for semi-permanent structures, such as cabin tents. Now that you know more about pole material, check out this wonderful option.

What Kind of Camping Do You Do? Figure Out the Best Design for MSR Tents
Non-Freestanding Tents

With an easy set up and roomy design, there is one MSR tent with a dome design that may be just right for you. With a lightweight design, these tents help to decrease the amount of weight you have to carry. They are staked to the ground, giving them increased wind resistance than freestanding tents. However, they require ground pitching, making them harder to set up and take down compared to other kinds of tents. You may want to take a look at some MSR tents with a non-freestanding design, starting with this one.

Dome Tents

If you're curious about a dome design for your MSR tent, there are three options available. These dome tents are usually supported by cross poles for enhanced load stability. They are aerodynamic to decrease wind load stress to the tent. These dome tents are easy to set up and take down since they rely on just one center pole for support. Featuring a lightweight build, they keep your pack weight manageable. Providing a good amount of headroom, they typically offer more room to stand up and walk about. If you think a dome design sounds right for you, check out an MSR tent made from dome.

A-Frame Tents

If you're curious about an A-frame design for your MSR tent, there are eight options available. These tents are commonly supported by five poles to create an 'A' shape and keep the tent secure. They are easy to set up and take down since they rely on just one center pole for support, making them suitable for those who will be stopping frequently for short stays at various campsites. Featuring a lightweight build, they are perfect for people who don't want to be weighed down by heavy camping equipment. However, they are low rise, limiting the amount of space you have to stand up and move around. If an A-frame design seems like the best choice for you, check out this great one.

Looking for MSR Tents That Protective All Year Round? There Are a Few Different Season Ratings to Know About
3-Season Tents

Keeping you protected in the spring through fall, any one of the two MSR tents available will be well-suited for all three seasons. 3-season tents feature mesh paneling, which keeps mosquitoes out. They are lightweight, so you can easily backpack while carrying your tent with the rest of your equipment and they also are suitable to use in spring, summer, and autumn, so they can withstand mild weather. These tents are usually built with vents, allowing air to escape rapidly to prevent condensation within the tent. You can check out this one if a three-season tent is what you're looking for.

4-Season Tents

If you're looking for a winter tent, there's only one MSR tent designed for year-round camping. You'll want to take a look! These tents can endure all seasons, so you can use them anytime of year. They are usually designed with vents, allowing air to escape rapidly to prevent condensation within the tent. A potential downside is that they weigh more than other kinds of tents, making them hard to carry if you will be backpacking long distances. Also, they are a bit expensive compared to other tents, so they may not be the best option if you're on a tight budget.