Switch shows off magnetic sunglasses at Outdoor Retailer 2012 Summer Market
Us outdoor recreation types need to be finicky when it comes to our sunglasses. Different activities need different lenses; from the blinding white glare of snow while skiing, to the shaded tunnels of trees we encounter on mountain bikes. Of course there are sunglasses out there with interchangeable lenses, but they can be difficult to switch out (and I’m always afraid of breaking the frames when forcing them in.) Born from this problem, comes Switch, the first eyewear company with a Magnetic Interchange Lens System. They showed their innovative sunglasses at the Outdoor Retailer 2012 Summer Market, and I was impressed.
So how does Switch technology work? Magnets. Yep, they put tiny magnets on the edges of the lenses, as well as on the frames. That way the lenses can be removed and different lenses put in very fast. In fact, while demonstrating the process at their booth, the lenses practically jumped into the frames!
Ok, so the big question here is this: are the magnets strong enough to keep the lenses in the frames during, say, a massive ski crash or endo on a mountain bike? The company assures me that they have extensively tested their sunglasses and that the lenses stay put. I got a pair and will test them out for myself, so stay tuned for a full review.
There are many different styles from Switch, but the ones that jumped out at me were the Tioga. These guys are worthy of outdoor adventure, while still looking good while driving or walking the streets without screaming “bike geek” like blades shades do. The lenses have two magnets each to ensure a snug fit in the frames, yet are super easy to remove. They come with a second set of lenses (low light rose amber) and can be used with a wide range of other lenses you can order online.
There are dozens more styles at the Switch website to suit everybody. Overall, Switch and their Magnetic Interchange Lens System is one of the coolest things I saw at Outdoor Retailer this year, and I think the idea may become an industry standard (as long as they really don’t fall out of the frames when I endo.)