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review

Oakley EVZero Blades

7
£143.00

VERDICT:

7
10
Great lens and lightweight feel, but check the fit as the frameless design won't suit all faces
Lightweight
Great lens
Unobstructed view
Frameless design lacks pressure and can slip down the nose
Weight: 
22g
Contact: 

Oakley's EVZero Blades are a lightweight pair of sunglasses that offer excellent clarity in bright conditions and a 'barely there' feel, while the lack of frame across the top of the lens gives an unobstructed view. However, they also feel flimsy and didn't fit securely on my face like my go-to Oakley Radar EVs.

The EVZero Blades are, according to Oakley, 'inspired by streetwear culture and global influencers'. It says the design 'taps into the fashion meets sport-performance style trend', but I found the glasses to lean more towards fashion.

> Find your nearest dealer here

Let's start with the good stuff. The Prizm Ruby lens is lovely, providing great clarity with no distortion. It casts a very nice tint on the road that is both comfortable on the eyes and lets you see clearly. There is no distortion while wearing the glasses, and the hydrophobic coating does a good job of keeping the lens clear of rain and sweat.

2020 Oakley EVZero Blades - inside.jpg

The lack of frame at the top of the glasses is great for field of view, especially when you get down in the drops and start looking up the road. The frameless design and thin build of the arms also mean they're very light, weighing in at just 22g.

However, I found the EVZero Blades kept slipping down my face, severely detracting from the ride. I would have liked a little more pressure from the sunglasses arms to prevent this.

The pressure on the side of the head is dependent on the system – frame and lens – not flexing too much. With a frame across the top of the lens, you add strength and there is less flex. A frameless design can, as this one does, suffer from too much flex, resulting in a flimsy feel and/or too little pressure placed on the side of the head by the arms.

2020 Oakley EVZero Blades - arm.jpg

Larger heads might get on fine with the EVZero Blades, which are a standard fit, but I wear a M/L helmet so it's not a peanut noggin.

For me, they lose out massively on the road when compared to the Radar EVs, and all the weight saving from the frameless design only saves 6g – though they are nearly £20 cheaper.

In fact, if the EVZero Blades fit you well, they're not bad value – they're certainly not the most expensive sunnies out there. The Radar EVs are £161, and Roka's GP 1X are £215.

However, you can get very good glasses for less: Ekoi's Perso Evo 9 sunnies are a great option at just £85.

> Buyer’s Guide: 28 of the best cycling sunglasses

Overall, I'd say the EVZero Blades are good, but there are more secure options out there with the same great lens. I'd suggest you try before you buy, to check that the fit and lightweight feel are for you.

Verdict

Great lens and lightweight feel, but check the fit as the frameless design won't suit all faces

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road.cc test report

Make and model: Oakley EVZero Blades

Size tested: Standard

Tell us what the product is for and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

Oakley says, 'Inspired by streetwear culture and global influencers, the aesthetic of Oakley™ EVZero™ Blades taps into the fashion meets sport-performance style trend. The shield merges the temples of the brand's EVZero frame with the lens cut of the iconic RazorBlades.'

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

Oakley lists:

SHIELD: A toric shield of Plutonite™ in a rimless design for a fashion-forward style

LENSES: Available with Prizm™ lenses that are designed to enhance colour, contrast and detail -- coming in a range of colour hues to match any style look

LIGHTWEIGHT: Rimless design reduces frame mass to provide durability and all-day comfort

GRIP: Unobtainium™ nosepads and temples increase grip to help keep eyewear securely in place without sacrificing comfort

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
5/10
Rate the product for performance:
 
6/10
Rate the product for durability:
 
7/10
Rate the product for weight (if applicable)
 
9/10
Rate the product for comfort (if applicable)
 
8/10
Rate the product for value:
 
5/10

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

They're very good until you look down.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

The lens is brilliant with a lovely tiny that is comfortable to look through and offers perfect clarity.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

The frameless design meant they lacked the tension to sit securely on my face and kept slipping down.

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?

A bit cheaper than the excellent Radar EV. But not cheap enough to prise me away from my favourite sunnies.

Did you enjoy using the product? I didn't enjoy constantly pushing them back up.

Would you consider buying the product? Not for me.

Would you recommend the product to a friend? I'd suggest that they try before buying.

Use this box to explain your overall score

They're lightweight and comfortable with a great lens, but the frameless design results in too much flex, meaning they won't sit securely on everyone's face.

Overall rating: 7/10

About the tester

Age: 24  Height: 177cm  Weight: 62kg

I usually ride: Cannondale Supersix Di2  My best bike is:

I've been riding for: 5-10 years  I ride: Most days  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo cross, commuting, club rides, general fitness riding, I specialise in the Cafe Ride!

Son of a Marathon runner, Nephew of a National 24hr Champion, the racing genetics have completely passed him by. After joining the road.cc staff in 2016 as a reviewer, Liam quickly started writing feature articles and news pieces. After a little time living in Canada, where he spent most of his time eating poutine, Liam returned with the launch of DealClincher, taking over the Editor role at the start of 2018. At the weekend, Liam can be found racing on the road both in the UK and abroad, though he prefers the muddy fields of cyclocross. To date, his biggest race win is to the front of the cafe queue.

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