Attention PocketRocket owners! Time to put that old stove out to pasture and upgrade to the new MicroRocket… Well, maybe not quite, but MSR has just released the new MicroRocket, and it’s a pretty sweet little stove.
Did I mention little? That’s the big news here. Yeah, it’s lighter, but the big deal is that it’s compact, really compact.
How compact? Well, say you had a little 550 ml mug type pot. With the PocketRocket, there’s no way you can even fit the stove into the pot.
But the MicroRocket? Not only will it fit, it will lay down flat inside.
Depending on what brand of pot you have, you can even fit a 110 gram canister in on top of the stove – and that’s in a mug that the PocketRocket won’t fit into at all.
Guys, that’s compact. Nice!
The new MicroRocket does come with a case, just like the old PocketRocket
Personally, I leave the case at home. For me, storing the stove in my cook pot is plenty of protection. The case just adds weight and bulk, so I use the case for storage at home but use my pot out on the trail. Each to his or her own.
Now, just look at that thing. It’s got “quality” written all over it.
What’s one of the complaints about the old PocketRocket? Well, the pot supports are a little bendy, a little thin. Not so with the new MicroRocket. Can you say “beefy?”
Those pot supports aren’t going anywhere. They’re solid.
Also included with the MicroRocket is this new, separate piezoelectric ignition.
Now, I’ve got to admit that my first reaction was not positive. I mean, what the heck, MSR? The convenience of piezo is that I don’t have to have a lighter. I mean piezo just means I press a button, and I’m cooking; no fishing in my pack for a lighter. If I have to “go fish,” what’s the point?
But there is just one problem. Attached piezo lighters are in the flame. All the time. What do most piezo lighters do after a while? Nothing. Most piezo lighters fail after some period of time. So MSR took it out of the flame. Time will tell, but this might just be the piezo that works. And unlike a butane lighter, MSR’s separate piezo ligher will never run out of fuel.
And there’s not much penalty for carrying it. The weight? 13 grams – less than half an ounce. And it packs really small. Remember that little mug type pot I showed you earlier? It’ll fit down in the bottom of the pot right beside the folded up stove. It basically takes up no room at all.
And it works really well. I’ve tried the piezo lighter on other stoves including white gas, canister gas, and alcohol. They all light right up. I also took the stove up to the top of an 8000ft/2400m peak, and the ignition worked just fine.
How about power? Well, it did great in my snow melting tests.
How about pot stability? Much improved over the PocketRocket, and it compares very well with other stoves. I rate the MicroRocket’s pot stability as “very good” for its class of stove.
How about flame control? The MicroRocket has great flame control. I was able to cook a nice omelet using the stove. The MicroRocket is a small stove, and it does have a very concentrated flame. In order to do real cooking, you’re going to have to bring real cookware. That concentrated flame will overheat the center of whatever you’re cooking if you go with a thin, lightweight pan.
In summary, it’s lighter weight and very packable; nice functional piezoelectric ignition; excellent build quality, beefed up pot supports, and very good pot stability; plenty of power for melting snow, but you can turn it down and cook an omelet. I am impressed – this is a good stove. Nice job, MSR.
The MSR MicroRocket: Highly recommended.
Want more info and more photos? In the process of writing this article, I compiled several posts that are on my blog. You’ll see how I tested the stove, how it performs out on the trail, and what my thought process was as I reviewed the stove. The below links will have additional links, so there’s plenty of information if you want it.