Mark, you have already stated that they are overpriced so there are no surprises there. If you have it-spend it, there is probably nothing better on the market.
I recently bought a new smaller Coleman to replace my 80qt model. It is one of the extended cold models and does very well for my car camping needs-certainly better than my 2 decade old model. It was hard to find one without those jive assed wheels on it but I did and am very happy with it. Years ago before they built the efficient models they do today we would camp at Kelly Creek at the end of June. We had the old metal clad Coleman's of the day and always topped off with ice at Orofino. When we reached Kelly we would find a spot in that would be in the shade all week, place the coolers there and cover them with old sleeping bags that we would soak in the river every day. That more than doubled the life of the ice. Using that same technique with a modern cooler would be even more effective. You can buy several Coleman's and expedition sleeping bags to cover them for the price of one Yeti! But if I were in your shoes I would buy the Yeti anyway-just for the braggin' rights.
My gf and I bought one last summer before a week long camping trip. We dry iced it before we loaded it and our ice could have lasted the trip but we chose to buy replacement ice after 4 days. I had to make a quick trip to get a fly removed out of my finger so since we headed to town we bought some supplies.
One thing to possibly think about is to only use the yeti for ice storage to resupply your old cooler with your food. We noticed that if you have to get into your cooler a lot even a yeti will hold ice for only so long.
I'm pretty slow I guess but it just occurred to me that all coolers represent a design that is about 100 years old and other than better insulation nothing has improved. They all have a fatal flaw in that every time you want to get out a bottle of beer that that has a footprint of about 4 square inches you have to open a lid that is closer to two square feet. Of course the ice melts soon. It seems to me that a 6'' X 6'' hatch or round port would allow you to reach in and get many of the items that are smaller sized without incurring a complete change of air that opening the entire lid causes.
Another blunder by manufacturers is the current trend to put cup holders in the lid. My new Coleman has 4 of these things and they are just stupid. If you put drinks in the damned things and open the lid....well, gravity rules. But just as bad is the fact that there are 4 places on the lid where the insulation is either paper thin or non existent. This flies in the face of building a more efficient cooler. Fortunately there is a fix. I cut 4 tapered rounds out of 2'' Styrofoam and glued them in place flush with the top of the lid. Some white calk around the edges and a coat of Kilz and the problem is solved. The lid-as-cupholder thing was someone's wet dream that they sold to marketing but was ill conceived from the get-go.
You might take a look at the Pelican coolers. http://www.pelicancases.com/pelican-vs-yeti-s/141.htm
Costco had the larger size for a decent??? price.
Lifetime warranty and some really good design features in my opinion.
That being said, I have several friends with Yeti's and all are satisfied and one friend
with an Engle who said he would probably buy the Yeti if he had it to do over. (Might be a cult thing)
They are nice I know people who have them & swear by them. If your only using them for 3 or four day trips I have'nt seen any big advantage over my coleman cooler. But on longer trips thats where they are an obvious advantage.that said likely as not ten years from now I'll still be looking for one in a garage sale!!
I have two matching Yetis (a balanced load on a mule is a happy thing!). They have performed very well under very harsh conditions like getting banged against trees and opened and closed thousands of times.
They are so efficient, I no longer use ice for 9-day back country trips.
They are USFS bear proof certified, so I don't have to hang them every night.
When I bought my first one years ago, they were pretty much the best game in town. Now, there are a bunch of others out there that are built the same. If I were buying coolers now, I'd seriously shop around and look at their competition - Grizzly, Igloo, K2, Engle, Pelican (which is now on sale at CostCo.)
To give the coolers the best results, we left them out the night before the testing started with lids open to chill down with an overnight low of 29° Fahrenheit. At 7 am on day one, I loaded each cooler with the appropriate amount of ice and secured the lids. Over the next thirteen days, the coolers were opened a minimum of twice a day, but as much as five or six times a day. Daytime high temperatures were as high as 86° and as low as 78° over this 13 day period of time and the lows were always in the mid to high 30’s.
It took a total of eight days in the sun for the first cooler to sacrifice all of it’s’ ice. It was the Igloo Yukon 70 without the Arctic Ice insert. All of the units with Arctic Ice inserts were still holding strong and had between twenty and forty percent of their original ice. The Yeti Tundra 65 was the next unit to fall on the 10th day. The Igloo Yukon 70 and the Engel DeepBlue 65 both made it to the end of the 11th day before losing all of their ice. The Grizzly 60 and Pelican 65 outlasted the rest and were able to hold ice until the very end of the 13th day of testing.