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Trouts Journal

Product Spotlight- Smith Chromapop Sunglasses

Ivan Orsic / Sep 10, 2014

Anyone who has opened a fishing magazine, been on a fishing website, or paid attention to any outdoor related media source lately has probably seen Smith's advertisements making this claim regarding their new ChromaPop line of sunglasses. The ads definitely caught my attention, however after spending literally the past 10 years wearing a "different" brand of sunglasses (probably not hard for most of you to guess the brand), I was skeptical to say the least. Well, fast forward to these past two months, and anyone who has crossed paths with me will have seen a pair of ChromaPops hanging around my neck...but let's not get too far ahead of ourselves just yet.

The first thing I, and everyone I've talked to who has made the switch to ChromaPops, seems to notice is how lightweight they are on your face. For the past number of years, it has seemed that all top-of-the-line sunglasses shared one common characteristic-- glass lenses. The clarity and durability of glass lenses is still tough for me to argue against, and the "toughness" the bridge of your nose had to develop if you wanted to spend all day on the water wearing them just came with the territory. Smith doesn't use glass lenses with their ChromaPop lenses, which was undoubtedly the largest piece of my skepticism pie. Knowing I was going to be writing this review, paired with the fact that I hadn't gotten an answer to why they went with non-glass lenses, I contacted Smith directly to get an answer. Here's what I heard back-

"The reason we chose to go with our lightweight material is that it is extremely impact resistant yet still amazingly clear. The most common complaints about glass are the weight (for all-day wear) and propensity to shatter when dropped. Our ChromaPop lenses address both of those without sacrificing the clarity normally associated with glass. Great for all-day fishing, driving, etc. The plastic we use in the ChromaPop lenses is a different material than what is used in our traditional polycarbonate lenses, which makes it more clear and scratch resistant than the traditional polycarbonate lens as well."

So now moving on to the catchy slogan, "The Grass Really Is Greener". I can't say anything to this other than "I agree". When it comes to the science behind the lenses, Smith put great focus on the areas of "color confusion". To explain that term in (hopefully) the simplest way possible, the human eye percieves all visible light in three different colors- red, blue and green. This visible light is transmitted- or behaves- like a wave, and where these waves cross or intersect eachother, the eye will naturally experience color confusion. ChromaPop lenses specifically target these intersections by filtering the light in a way that will elimate color confusion, thus providing the user greater color, clarity and definition. The visual below should help explain further. There's also a good video on Smith's website that walks you through the lens technology.

As you can see, where the red, blue and green visible light intersects, the filters in ChromaPop lenses specifically address these areas.

From a price standpoint, Smith is in line- if not slightly cheaper- with the other top quality specs out there. Most styles offered run just slightly north of $200.

Finally, Smith has done a fantastic job offering ChromaPops in a variety of frame styles and shapes. Both mens and womens specific frames in everything from full coverage, wrap around options, to styles resembling more of a classic wayfarer and aviator are available and waiting here at the shop!

Grab a pair online or swing by and take a look at the grass outside the shop.....just don't be surprised when it really is greener.

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