O’Neill Psycho Tech Review for 2019

O'Neill Psycho Tech Review for 2018

The newest Psycho Tech wetsuit from O’Neill is the pinnacle of wetsuit technology and performance. The days of sacrificing one desirable trait in light of another are long gone. The new Psycho Tech is lightweight and warm. Durable and Flexible. Easy to get on and it dries fast. Taped and sealed. To top it all off, O’Neill is now offering the exact same 5.5mm Hooded Psycho Tech in a Women’s Version as well. Overall, O’Neill hit an absolute home run with this wetsuit and I cannot wait to tell you why it should replace your current hooded full suit.


O’Neill first introduced their TechnoButter neoprene with the release of the Pyro Tech back in 2013. A couple years later they changed the name to the Psycho Tech and upgraded the neoprene to their Techno Butter 2 technology. In 2017 O’Neill release their Psycho Tech with Techno Butter 3 neoprene. All three of those suits were our best selling wetsuits for their respective years. If you have experienced any of the above wetsuits then I don’t have to tell you about the mind-boggling flexibility or the exceptional comfort of the TechnoButter neoprene. This year, O’Neill took these already amazing wetsuits to the next level.

New Updates

The Biggest update to the 2019/2020 Psycho Tech from years past is the stitchless seam construction. This combines an exterior fluid seam weld with O’Neill’s new TB3X Taping on either side of a stitchless seam. This gives the suit an even more more watertight and durable seam along with all the other features you have come to love in the suit that I will mention below. 

O'Neill Psycho Tech 5.5/4 Hooded Chest Zip Wetsuit

O’Neill’s exclusive TechnoButter 3 material may be the biggest breakthrough in wetsuit technology since the invention of the wetsuit back in the 1950’s. This year’s TB3 has several distinctive features that elevate it above models of years past. The TB3 neoprene is substantially lighter and more flexible than the TechnoButter from previous years. This year’s TB3 neoprene is pre-stretched to retain its form for maximum flexibility. This allows the neoprene to snap back to hug the body for ultimate comfort and a superior fit. This is the perfect suit for those surfers like me who may fluctuate between sizes depending on the season and the amount of beer they are drinking.  

Interior of the O'Neill Psycho Tech 5.5/4 Hooded Chest Zip Wetsuit

Another great feature of the Psycho Tech wetsuit is the TB3 Firewall jersey, which is comprised of maximum stretch hydrophobic yarn. This plays two major roles in the performance of the suit.  First, it contributes to the suit’s phenomenal flexibility. Second, it sheds water instead of absorbing it and will do so for the lifespan of the suit. This keeps the suit unbelievably lightweight and relatively dry, even when submerged in water. For 2020 O’Neill extended the jersey liner from the torso all the way through the legs. This plays a pivotal role in keeping your core warm and extending the length of your session.

Back Panel of the O'Neill Psycho Tech 5.5/4 Hooded Chest Zip Wetsuit

O’Neill has implemented an Envy Foam Rubber Core into the interior of the neoprene in both the chest and back. This consists of a microscopic air-cell rubber core formula, which plays a role in both maximizing heat insulation while decreasing the overall weight. The end result is a wetsuit that carries the warmth of 5.5-6mm wetsuit while retaining the weight of a normal 4/3mm. As a surfer who wears a 5/4 year round, this is a huge breakthrough. Less mass equals less resistance, which leads to longer sessions.

Other Features

Aside from all the upgrades to the neoprene, the Psycho Tech hooded wetsuit has all the top of the line features you would expect from a high-end O’Neill wetsuit. The Front Upper Zip Entry (F.U.Z.E.) is a breeze to get in and out of and uses the same technology as O’Neill’s patented ZEN Zip closure featuring drain holes to keep you dry and warm. The durable RedZone water-resistant zipper is one of my favorite features. The zipper is already fed into the teeth so you don’t have to fumble around with frozen fingers trying to line the thing up perfectly. Just pull the hood over your head and slide the zipper from left to right.

Zipper Entry of the O'Neill Psycho Tech 5.5/4 Hooded Chest Zip Wetsuit

The Famous “Red Zone Zipper”

Furthermore, the suit comes equipped with an external fluid seam weld made from a durable 8mm silicone-based urethane. This helps keep water out while allowing maximum stretch. The interior is triple-glued and blind stitched leaving little to no room for blown seams. Finally, the double sealed collar and Krypto Knee pads are great touches that add that little extra durability where we need it.

Fluid Seam Weld over the Stitch and the Ultra Tough Krypto Knee Pads

For 2020 all Psycho Tech suits come standard with the Eco-Friendly Aqua Alpha solvent free lamination glue. This glue is completely water based and free from organic solvents and VOCs. The addition of Aqua Alpha reduces the solvent usage 600 grams per wetsuits compared to traditional laminating glues.

Psycho Tech Firewall

Overall, this suit is near perfect. The only negative I have found is that with the exterior being so soft and buttery, it is a little more susceptible to minor knicks and tears. However,  I am often times entering and exiting the water on barnacle-covered cobblestones, and it could be due to my lack of grace. If you normally surf sandy beach breaks you don’t have to worry about that as much. Just be careful changing in the car lot on the pavement. I would recommend investing in a changing mat of some form.

Final Impression

The new O’Neill Psycho Tech is the best suit I have ever owned. It’s lightweight composition and insane flexibility allows me to extend my sessions a considerable amount, from a fatigue standpoint. Yet these amazing performance characteristics do not limit the suit’s functionality when it comes to warmth. In the few months I have owned this suit, there hasn’t been a single session that I’ve had to cut short due to being cold. This suit is currently our best selling wetsuit, and for good reason. So what are you waiting for? It’s time to jump on the bandwagon and pick up the Psycho Tech.

Shop the ONeill Psycho Tech 5.5/4mm Hooded Chest Zip Wetsuit

Check out our full selection of O’Neill Wetsuits Here.

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Spencer Lappi

Spencer is a long time member of the Cleanline family who started out in his grom days washing wetsuits out back. These days you can either find him managing our Cannon Beach shop in the summer or at the online store dialing in customers by winter. When Spencer is not at work he is either in the water or planning his next exotic adventure abroad.

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