Rudy Project Karboneye Review

Apparel Pro Reviews

The lens has a high degree of clarity, and the shape and frameless design offered a superb panoramic field of view, without any edges or obstructions. The spaciousness and bendability of the lens, along with the temples flexibility and padding, and the comfortable nosepiece, worked in synergy to make the sunglasses disappear on your face. It was nice to forget that you were wearing a set of sunglasses. The fit snugly, so even when thrashing and bashing through the most extreme conditions and terrain, they stayed firmly planted. The lens was wide and decently tall, so they provided good wind blockage and sun protection, though sometimes the frameless design meant watery eyes when going Mach 1 or when dealing with high winds. Although the temples are skinny, the lens wraparound design provided decent side protection for scattered side light entry. The nosepiece and the temple tips have a good amount of adjustability, for altering the fit, and increasing the comfort. I didn’t like the end of the temple tips, as they were slightly sharp, and on occasion, I would poke myself when putting them on. The hinges are hidden, which provides additional safety during a crash, and no pinching where it closes.

I really liked the nice carrying case they came with, and it was extremely easy to place them into it, and it offered a lot of protections, which was handy when tossing it into your travel bag. They are brutally expensive, although the technology, design and especially the addition of the carbon fiber bumps up the costs. Their price point is in line to some of Oakley’s pricier models, but is still cheaper than its top of the line $1500 C SIX. Thanks to the durable NXT, the lenses have been bombproof, and I have gotten no scratches, which is pretty amazing, since I always seem to do that with any eyewear, even the ones that are supposed to be unscratchable (marketing hyperbole). I do admit that due to the price and my love of the KarbonEye, I am extra cautious with them, and treat them with additional TLC.

Measured Specs:

  • Weight: 30.1 grams/1.06 ozs
  • Lens size: 136mm x 49mm ( x inches)
  • Arm Length: 132mm ( inches)
  • Frame size: 139mm wide ( inches) x 142mm long ( inches)

Bottom Line
The Rudy Project KarbonEye is a superb pair of sunglasses, which is comfortable, lightweight and stays put, and the frameless design provides an incredible panoramic view. The ImpactX lens has exceptional clarity, and the photochromic capabilities work wonders in varying conditions, and I especially enjoyed the red tint, which offers excellent contrast, sharpness, reduces glare and increases depth perception. The synergy of the comfort, flexible lens and temples, and frameless and spaciousness of the design meant I forget that I was wearing them, which is a sure sign of a great pair of sunglasses (or any apparel product). The durable, scratch and impact resistant NXT material is pretty amazing, and offers outstanding safety. The trick and sharp-looking steel and carbon-fiber temples, is coated with a soft and resilient rubber, and the nosepiece and tip have great adjustability for fitting and comfort. The Rudy Project KarbonEye is brutally expensive, but their excellent features, extreme comfort and frameless design make for an exceptional pair of sunglasses.

Strengths

  • Photochromic – red tint was excellent
  • Lightweight
  • Comfortable
  • Superb Clarity
  • Anti-Fog
  • Panoramic view
  • Frameless design
  • You forget you are wearing sunglasses

Weaknesses

  • Temple tip end point is pointy
  • Brutally expensive

MSRP: $359.99 – $384.99

Overall Rating: 5 Flamin’ Chili Peppers

Follow Brian Mullin at http://www.gramslightbikes.com/

For more information on the KarbonEye, Rudy Project’s Rx-program or other Rudy Project products, please visit their website at www.rudyprojectusa.com.

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About the author: Brian Mullin

Brian has been part of the Mtbr team since 2007, where he has become an integral member of the review and test staff, specializing in technical articles. He likes to push the limits in all the sports he obsesses in, whether it's mountain biking, whitewater kayaking, extreme skiing, or sport climbing. He takes those same strengths and a good dose of insanity to his reviewing and writing on mountain biking products, creating technical, in-depth and hyperbolic articles. Whenever he's not on the bike, he might be found watching MotoGP racing, otherwise look for him out on extremely technical singletrack.



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