Product Review: GUNNAR Glasses (3 Models)
I recently had the opportunity to interview the president of GUNNAR, Scott Sorensen concerning the leap they are making into esports with their Coca-Cola partnership, and frankly found it pretty informative. They also asked if I’d like to review a pair of their glasses, which I agreed to. However, they wound up sending me three different models! They all had the same type of lenses (amber), but what mattered in these is how they fit on my head. They all block the same amount of light, but for me, comfort is an issue. I have frequent migraines/headaches as a result of having a tumor at a younger age in my ear and the pain never really went away. So it’s key that I have glasses that can sit on my head all day without causing me any extra pain from the pressure/tightness of them. The Amber lenses though, block 100% of UV Light as well as 65% of blue-light, which is a huge number. The only model that does more is the Outdoor pair (90%! Kind of wanting a pair now to be honest…), but I reviewed the pair most relevant to gamers/people who spend a lot of time in front of a computer monitor.
I spend most of my days working (and not working if I’m honest) in front of my PC, so I want to keep my eyes as safe as possible. As someone who spends 10+ hours in front of his computer monitors, this is very important. So I spent a day with each pair of glasses, wearing them the entire time I was at my desk, at least 12 hours per pair of glasses. I tried the Vertex (Smoke – Amber), the Havok (Onyx – Amber), and the Intercept (Onyx – Amber) glasses, wearing them equal amounts of time per day. Again, the glasses all have the same tint, and the same curve to them, which is nice because the curve of the lens, in my estimation will keep dry air away from my eyes and reduce any kind of irritation that I might experience. There is a slight yellow tint to visual (of course, it’s amber colored!) but it does not damper my experience reviewing games or writing the actual reviews. Colors are still bright and vibrant, and I feel considerably less fatigue wearing them. Not everyone will have the same results, obviously, but I think for the price, they’re absolutely worth it. Now, someone who spends more time doing graphic design should consider pairs that have a different lens (Crystalline) so they do not potentially design something based on that amber hue.
The most important thing for me, other than keeping my eyes safe, is how they feel. I wear headphones a lot of the day, either for streaming/gaming purposes, or simply to make sure others around me aren’t listening to whatever weird stuff I am (whether it’s a live stream, music, a speedrun, or offensive, awful comedy). So, I do my best to be considerate to those around me. That means headphones! My original pair of Gunnars were too tight on the sides of my head, and headphones only doubled that. Out of the three pairs I wore for 12+ hours, the Havoks felt the best in terms of sheer comfort. With a thin steel frame, coupled with slim black temples, they slid right into place, stayed there, and didn’t squeeze my own temples at all. The hardest to wear for me personally was the Intercepts. They are thicker all around, and after a few hours, I absolutely could not wear them. It might be just that I have a bigger head and shouldn’t be wearing them, I could accept that. They looked more like a traditional pair of glasses, with the thick black frame, still a sharp look. They were just a bit uncomfortable while working. The other pair, the Vertex is the lightest all around and had a clear, light frame that I could see a lot of people really falling for. The see-through frame was a cool look, and if only the temples were a little thinner. I could wear these while sitting in front of the TV for sure.
However, as someone who does not traditionally wear glasses, I have one serious, major issue that if I don’t mention it, my brain might explode. These lenses are so incredibly susceptible to smudges/fingerprints. I mean, they have these handy cloth cases to put them in to prevent smudging, but you can’t escape it. It’s going to happen. I might slip and accidentally brush my thumb against a lens, and now there’s a gigantic, horrific smudge on them. Luckily, I have several cleaning cloths for phone screens/etc that I can clean them with, but you should definitely be aware, and please do not take Windex or something to them. Don’t ruin such an investment. I do feel like I should mention this, as it’s the biggest drawback to glasses like this. I have no idea if it happens on the other lens colors, or if it’s as noticeable, but on the ambers, you will see it. So please be aware that smudging sucks, but you can clean them up if you’re just gentle with them. I’d also like to note that none of these are prescription pairs, but they do exist and are a bit on the pricier side. I can’t review those, as I do not need glasses. I just like these because they do feel like my eyes are a bit more relaxed, and the harsh light of my monitors affects me less. They might not be for everyone, but I enjoy them, and would definitely recommend them to anyone who spends a lot of time at their PC troubleshooting, doing tech support, writing or gaming. I do recommend Gunnar products highly however. I ultimately found them both comfortable and helpful.
You can find more information on them below. These glasses were provided by Gunnar for review purposes.
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