Getting a foothold in the ultra competitive cycling sunglass market is no easy feat. It’s probably why most new entrants seem so derivative of the 800 pound sunglass Gorilla, Oakley. When we heard the Belgian helmet company, Lazer, was bringing a full line of sunglasses to a store near you we were excited. Lazer follows the beat of their own drum, continually bringing novel and interesting solutions to the segment and we fully expected their sunglass line to be wholly original. We were not disappointed.
Our favorite has to be the Electron. Over the past few months these sunglasses have become an everyday accessory, transitioning from the trail to casual use with ease. The best part is they perform both tasks with almost zero sacrifice. The fit is incredibly secure on the trail thanks to the Ultra-Grip nose and temple pieces, but unlike typical wrap around riding glasses, the Ultra-Grip rubber pieces are nicely concealed giving the glasses their casual wear style. Lazer invests the glasses with their Panorama Lens technology. Developed with optical masterminds Carl Ziess they ensure a clear, undistorted view across the entire wide lens. Happily, Lazer delivers this wide field of view without falling back to the derivative styling we see in so many other glasses.
The only performance feature they give up to the frame less wraparounds on the trail is the ability to see through the top of the glasses as your head is dropped tackling a technical section. If this is really important to you check out Lazers’ Magnetos.
The tortoise shell Electron’s we tested came with Lazer’s Mela Photo Lens technology. This is quite simply the best lens we have ever ridden with. Unlike many photochromic lenses that fail to get dark enough for full sun, the Mela Photo lens transmits only 31% at its greatest to 12% at its least. We found it perfect for bright days on the trail that rolled to early evening and even found the lens ideal for full sun rides that took in heavily shaded trails. If this isn’t enough for you, the lenses also posses 140spf sunscreen by way of an injection of synthetic Melanin. Another added bonus is the blocking of blue light for increased clarity. Again, these are the best lenses we have experienced. Exceptional. Incredibly the Electron, with its quality optics, perfect fit and durable build come in at a fraction of the cost of other major players. Find a pair and give them a try. Any pair of glasses that so easily transitions from trail to everyday performance like the Electron will always have a place in our kit and we don’t see another pair of glasses surpassing the Electron in this category for a very long time.
While we recommend the tortoise shell Electron with the Mela Photo lens, Lazer has created numerous other frame and lens combos: Gloss Black (Smoke Red, Lazer Yellow, Clear), Gloss Green (Smoke Silver, Lazer Yellow, Clear), Gunmetal (Smoke Blue, Lazer Yellow, Clear), Matte Black / White (Smoke Blue, Lazer Yellow, Clear), Gloss White (Crystal Photochromic), Tortoise (Mela Photo).
Price for Tortoise (Mela Photo): $72.00 www.lazersport.com