ROKA Lockhart Eyeglasses Review
As someone who loves both outdoor activities and has terrible eyesight, I’m always on the hunt for the “perfect” outdoor goggles. What makes outdoor eyewear perfect, you might be wondering? Well, two things: great optical quality, lens treatments and a snug fit to prevent fogging, and a lightweight frame that stays in place. Enter the ROKA Lockhart with corrective lenses, the last and probably one of the best options in my search for quality glasses.
ROKA Lockhart Prescription Glasses Review:
- Non-slip “GEKO™ Pads”
- Fingerprint resistant
- Sweat and chemical resistant
- Ultralight nylon lenses with anti-reflective, anti-fog, hydrophobic and oleophobic coatings
- Frame + non-Rx lenses weigh 22g
- Spring hinges
- MSRP: $210 (non-Rx lenses)
Actually stylish, actually performing
The particular ROKA model I’m testing is the Lockhart frame in ‘Bourbon’, a light brown translucent material. The lenses are their bronze polarized lenses, with my heavy prescription of -4.5/-4.75. I use them for a mix of driving, skiing and biking in the early fall and now in the winter. Just yesterday I took them on an amazingly beautiful and sunny ski tour – so they see a range of PNW conditions.
ROKA says their frame material, a type of nylon, is lighter than materials traditionally used in eyeglass frames. I could believe it, and they quote 22g for the standard lens/mount combo. For my glasses, this weight is more like 28 g. Not bad for a complete package.
The frames are simple and solid. ROKA advertises them as being made from an ultra-lightweight nylon, which weighs less than other commonly used frame materials like acetate and polycarbonate. You can probably go lighter with options like titanium, but those get exponentially more expensive.
For me, the most important part of Lockhart frames is that they feel durable. I’ve had lightweight goggles that have a cheap plastic feel, even ones that cost over $150. The ROKA Lockhart have the price of a high-end pair of sunglasses, but they reward you with a commensurate level of build quality.
The frames feature well-implemented standard features, like spring-loaded temples with a touch of outward flex; this adds durability to the frame, but the main benefit is how it works in concert with the ‘GEKO™ fit’ retention system. Springs help frames retain their fit for years and help frames stay in place by applying gentle pressure to the ear tips on ROKA’s elastomer accents that grip your skin. It’s a rubbery, hydrophilic compound that grips slightly better when damp with sweat, making it a great choice for active use. The same compound is present on the nasal bridge.
Overall the fit of the Lockhart is excellent. I have a big head and many glasses can feel too narrow. For me, the spring-loaded temples flex slightly to provide just the right grip. These springs also mean that the frame will adapt to a variety of different facial structures. At this price, however, you should do your best to try them before you buy. But for me, I’ve been happy to take these things for biking and backcountry skiing because they stay in place but aren’t so close to my face that they fog up.
The quality of the lens is surprisingly good. I’m a bit wary of companies that offer homemade prescription glasses because I’ve had burns before, but the quality of ROKA’s glasses is absolutely excellent. I use their “Bronze” lens, which is good for bright light and full sun, but can also adapt to darker or dim conditions, which is especially nice for a long day of riding.
I sometimes get a little eye strain if I wear it in direct sunlight (especially when visiting the high desert in Oregon or Nevada where the sun is so much more intense), but for most conditions in the PNW I have them found versatile. And the quality is so crisp: ideal for fast-paced activities like cycling in sunny weather.
I will also touch briefly on “unboxing”. ROKA has done a great job presenting the product in a really attractive case that looks premium; the box includes a hard case, a soft bag and also two other nose sizes so you can get the right fit. They come with the mid-size noses installed, which turned out to be the right size for me. There’s even a little tool to take out the old ones too.
- Material and build quality feels premium
- Excellent optical clarity in a variety of conditions
- Features are well implemented, especially the spring hinges and non-slip handles
- Spring hinges helped accommodate my large head without pinching
- I can’t think of any real negatives – maybe the cost, but they are premium!
The Basics: ROKA Lockhart Prescription Sunglasses
I racked my brains to find real downsides to these frames and lenses, and I really couldn’t come up with anything. You have to try them on for yourself to see if they fit you well, but for my head shape and the activities I like, these frames are versatile and high quality. I love how they can double as adventure and lifestyle sunglasses. They are expensive, yes, but the build quality is worth the price. All in all, this was my first ROKA pair, and I’m hooked!
Buy now: Available on ROKA.com