Jim’s Tech Talk
By Jim Langley
- Built-in “reader” bifocal lenses
- Full adjustable fit
- Fototec lenses change tint automatically
- Rugged Grilamid TR-90 frame
- Fog-fighting lens vents
- Hydrophilic rubber contact points prevent slippage
- Ample coverage and protection
- Zero distortion
- Quality case included
Source: https://www.tifosioptics.com/product/veloce-matte-black-reader-2-0-fototec/, bike shops, catalogs
Weight (pair): 28 grams
How obtained: sample from company
RBR advertiser: no
Tested: Commuting daily; racing and training (road and dirt)
Tifosi Delivers with Super Affordable, Stylish and Functional Bifocal Cycling Glasses
I’m giving Tifosi’s Veloce Readers our highest rating because to me, they’re the perfect glasses, that provide everything I need in cycling eyewear and at a sweet price, too. In fact, I can’t think of anyway that they can be improved. And, believe me, I gave it my best shot to try to find issues.
I’ve ridden with them every day to work and back, worn them on many long training rides in different weather and relied on them while racing on the road and dirt. Through it all, they provided excellent protection and visibility and they’re so light, I hardly know they’re on my face. Plus, at only $79.95, they may be the least expensive technical glasses with readers you can buy.
The special feature is the bifocal lenses. The lower part of both lenses feature magnifiers built in. You choose from +1.5, 2.0 or 2.5 magnification. They’re positioned so that you don’t look through them unless you want to. When riding they allow reading the small digits on computers that are otherwise illegible to those who need glasses. And off the bike, the readers work just as well as if you had your regular reading glasses along.
So, if you’re fixing a flat you can see well enough to find that tiny piece of wire or glass still stuck in the tire – or to true a warped wheel. And, having built-in readers means you don’t have to carry separate glasses along with you on rides. I’ve lost and damaged several pairs doing this, which is frustrating and expensive.
Another nice feature is the Fototec lenses, which change from almost clear to smoke grey automatically to suit the conditions. I find this super helpful going in and out of shaded areas. I had actually switched to riding in clear lens glasses, but then had no glare protection, which I find critical for commuting in traffic.
The Veloce’s Fototecs are the best of both worlds, blocking UV rays and glare, plus then lightening for optical clarity and picking up obstacles on poorly lit surfaces. It happens fast enough that I don’t notice the change though if you see your reflection passing a shop window, the change is obvious – it looks like you’re wearing dark shades.
I also appreciate the lens vents that help fight fogging. These are the first glasses I’ve used extensively that haven’t required cleaning during long rides. I do clean them, but about once a week at home. Otherwise, they stay clean and clear.
Thanks to Tifosi’s moisture-resistant (“hydrophilic”) rubber ear and nose pieces in the frames, the Veloces stay put nicely regardless of how bumpy the riding or how hard you push the pace. Also, the frame is constructed of Tifosi’s Grilamid TR-90, which they describe as “a homopolyamide nylon characterized by an extremely high alternative bending strength, low density, and high resistance to chemical and UV damage.’
The part related to fit and staying in place is the high bending strength. I didn’t realize how high until I visited Tifosi at the Sea Otter Classic bike festival (registration began this week http://www.seaotterclassic.com/) and they demonstrated by essentially bending one temple into a near pretzel (!). It means you can shape the frames however needed to fit exactly how you want them to. Yet, I didn’t need to bend mine at all for them to fit my face.
If you have a smaller face and don’t need the Fototec lenses, check out their Tyrant model https://www.tifosioptics.com/product/tyrant-2-0-matte-black-reader-1-5/, which has a slightly smaller fit ($49.95). You can also get the Veloces without Fototec for $49.95.
Summing up, I think the Veloces are the ultimate cycling eyewear for anyone who needs readers and is looking for top-notch cycling performance. Plus, you get it all for a very affordable $79.95 and they even include a nice zip hard case to keep your new favorite glasses like new.
Ride total: 9,066
I have their non-reader transitional lens frameless version (just arms) and I love them so far.. My regular Take a Look Mirror works great with them.
Jim Langley says
Thanks for letting everyone know that they accept the Take a Look mirror, Michael. In case people want to learn more, here’s a link to that mirror: https://amzn.to/2SOyg1S
I have those glasses and have used them for about 2 years and I did discover a couple of problems. The first problem is major in my opinion, and that they scratch easier than any other sunglass I have ever bought, the lens was shot after the first season of riding! So I had to spend another $70 for the Fototec lens replacement only to have those scratched up at the end of the second season and I even tried to treat them like delicate flowers! So instead of buying a third set of Fototec I got just a set of $15 lenses for it so I won’t be upset when they get scratched. I find the scratching thing odd considering I have a pair of Bolle’s that are around 20 years old without a single scratch!! the other issue with the Fototec is that they only darken by just a shade, nothing even close to photochromic or transitional lens found in prescription glasses.
Jim Langley says
Thanks for that feedback, Fred. I will not give mine any special treatment – haven’t so far, either – and I’ll see how they hold up to scratching. Right now they are still like new even though I’ve dropped them at least twice and don’t put them back in their case like I should. I agree that they don’t darken all that much. Whether it’s enough or not enough depends on preference. It works well for me.
Jim’s review of these glasses was spot-on. I have been using them for 4 years now and they are an indispensable part of my cycling gear. I have the 2.0 diopter for seeing the cyclometer numbers and doing repairs on the road. They are a great value and work very well in all conditions except mist and rain. In those conditions, they tend to get fogged up on the outside of the lenses. I think the only cure for that would be windshield wipers! I have not had a problem with scratching, but keep them in their soft fabric bag when I am not using them. Recommended for those who do not need prescription lenses for distance; only for reading..
After I broke my Gargoyle frameless sunglasses in a crash, I decided to replace them with this Tifosi fototec model with readers. I find that they darken well on bright days and not too much in the dawn hours when I need more visibility. Even though they fog at stops as previously mentioned, they quickly clear when moving again. They are no worse at fogging than other shades I have used. Only the Gargoyle (Classic I think) fogs less. It has a lot of space between the lens and temple areas, and is consequently cooler in the heat. A con for me an the Tifosi Veloce is that the top frame impedes my vision somewhat when I am in an aero position with my head down and eyes looking up. The Gargoyle frameless and POC with full frame do not impede my vision when I’m in an aero position.