Italian eyewear expert Rudy Project’s new Keyblades are available in seven models featuring different lens and frame configurations.
I was testing in autumn rather than high summer so went for the matte black Keyblades with photochromic ImpactX lenses, which change brightness with the level of light.
The Keyblades aren’t designed just for cycling. Rudy says they’re perfect for cycling, golf, fishing, tennis and more. In a week’s riding during various weather conditions they proved extremely effective on and off the bike.
The new ‘innovation’ in the Keyblades is what Rudy calls ‘enhanced Vertical Power Flow’: “a revolutionary air-control system to always ensure unmatched vision”.
This is achieved through the use of a large vent on the outer lower edge of each lens and, if you flip the lenses partly out of the frame, there are two elongated vents at the top of each lens. Oh, and an ‘upper frame exhaust port’, too.
I certainly didn’t experience any issues with fogging and the Keyblade’s lens quality is exceptional, the lens rapidly adjusting from 9 to 73 per cent light transmission. This range even allowed me to commute in darkness, though I’d probably recommend a night-specific lens for eye protection in these conditions.
The lenses use Rudy Project’s guaranteed unbreakable ImpactX photochromic material, which is semi-rigid, so it bends rather than snaps and it also shrugs off grit.
Unlike most photochromic glasses, ImpactX lenses incorporate the photochromic particles directly in their matrix, rather than just as a coating, which would be much more vulnerable to scratching.
The Keyblades are also compatible with RX lenses (available separately), if you want to combine prescription and photochromic lenses.
The Keyblade’s comfort is impressive. Their adjustable and replaceable rubber nose pad and flexible temple tips mean you can alter these one-size-only unisex Keyblades to fit your face. In fact, you barely notice that you’re wearing the 32g glasses that combine excellent fast-reacting, super-tough optics, great comfort and unobtrusive styling.
Rudy Project Keyblade details
- There are vents at the lower outside edge of the lenses, in the bridge and you can also lower the lens slightly in the frame to reveal vents – ‘exhaust ports’ at the top
- Made from Rudy Project’s ImpactX material. Rudy says, “ImpactX lenses are guaranteed unbreakable for life” and are 10 per cent lighter than polycarbonate
- The frame is made from Grilamid, a thermoplastic material that’s light, flexible, impact- and weather-resistant. We’re not sure that its low flammability helps much though!