Gunnar gaming glasses review
A great buy for the gamer who has everything else
When I first heard of the Gunnar gaming glasses, gimmick sprang to mind and I dismissed them without much thought. However, user feedback hints that the glasses may be more helpful than they initially seem. Tinted yellow glass or a gamer’s best friend? Read on to find out.
Lens Geometry: Gunnar glasses have lenses with a high degree of curvature, making them “wrap closely to the face”. This traps humidity closer to the eye, preventing eyes drying out. The lens geometry also focuses light before it reaches the eye, according to their site. This allows the eye muscles, which flex to view objects near to you, to relax. Relaxed eye muscles improve long term comfort.
Lens material: The lenses are made up of low density material and have a low refractive index value for “better image clarity”. The material also features low colour distortion for a true representation of colours (despite the fact that the amber lens tint alters colours somewhat).
Lens tint: The gaming glasses feature an amber tint, which cuts out parts of the lighting spectrum from computer monitor backlighting and fluorescent ambient lighting to give a warmer picture. It also increases contrast making text easier to read and movement more noticeable.
Lens Coating: The glasses feature an anti-reflective coating which reduces reflections and glare. There is also a hard-coat layer to prevent scratches and oil build-up on the lenses, both of which can degrade image quality.
The Gunnar gaming glasses feel solid and well built to the touch. There are no loose components other than the nose pads where the glasses rest on your face, though these need to be slightly loose for better comfort.
However, there was one issue with the Gunnars. The lens coating mentioned above is supposed to prevent oil build up and scratches on the lenses. Simply put, it doesn’t. Oil build up on the lenses from fingers is far worse than a set of prescription lenses as well as a set of polarized Ray Ban sunglasses. Granted, both of these pairs of glasses cost many times more than the Gunnars, but the oil retention was dramatic.
As for scratches, after a week of use a small scratch appeared on the left lens, despite my best efforts of protecting the glasses. I’ve been wearing glasses for the last 13 years and none of my other pairs have similar scratches, despite leading much harder lives and being far older.
These two issues can be remedied by taking extremely good care of the glasses, and keeping a micro fibre wipe nearby to get rid of any oil build up. They aren’t deal breakers, but potential buyers should bear this in mind before handing over money for a pair.
The Gunnars make gaming even more enjoyable than it was previously. The contrast does improve, the screen is clearer with some of the light tones blocked out, and my eyes feel far less strained after a few hours in front of the monitor.
In testing the Gunnars I had to wear my contact lenses, which normally dry out and annoy me quite quickly if I’m spending a lot of time in front of a monitor. With the glasses on, I actually forgot I had my contact lenses in; the difference was dramatic.
As for my gaming, my apparent skill level increased after I got used to the glasses. With the glasses on I seemed to do better in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, with them off it was as if someone had injected pure noob directly into my bloodstream. Whether this was due to the placebo effect or the technology built into the Gunnars I’m not sure, though the extra frag or two per game makes the glasses well worth it.
The Gunnar gaming glasses will become your new best friend, and after a short while using them you won’t even notice they’re there, until they’re not. I now use them for every PC related task, from writing articles to playing first person shooters.
The build quality may not be top notch in every aspect, but at the lower end of the price scale (around R500 at retail) it’s hard to find fault. The glasses are a great buy and come highly recommended.