Gunnar Optiks MLG Phantoms

I picked up a pair of Gunnar Optiks MLG Phantoms from Amazon a few days ago. I pretty much just picked the cheapest pair of Gunnars I could find and clicked Add to Cart; I didn’t do a ton of research into the different styles or anything like that. I’ve just wanted them for a while since I get headaches from long periods on the computer, and I pretty much devote the majority of my days to the computer or at least a screen of some sort.

I’m not a glasses wearer. It never occurred to me that a pair of frames might not sit quite right on my head. I suppose you can see where this is going? Of course they wouldn’t work for me. For some reason they wind up sitting very low on my eyes. Apparently, I have a much smaller head than the average man. You know, with me being a tiny woman and all. Heck, why would I even buy these being that girls don’t play games?

Sigh.

Well, TG seems to be enjoying them. He’s currently wearing them in front of his normal bifocals, which I’m pretty sure is going to be the look hitting the runways any day now, by the way. But, before the glasses chose him, I did give them a try. And I’m still kind of wishing they were on my face.

Here’s the thing: they work. They work ridiculously well. So well, in fact, that I’m thinking of finding some of that tinted plastic wrap to wrap my monitor in, carefully avoiding the vents of course, to lesson that extra blue that the tinted Gunnars are supposed to protect from. Well, maybe not really. But these glasses were awesome. Unfortunately for me, my eyes lined up a bit wrong with them, and I was having trouble with a little distortion now and then. I spent two days fidgeting with them. Putting them on, taking them off, lifting them up, readjusting them, lifting them up again, and taking them off again. I couldn’t find a natural sitting spot that left them comfortable to look through for any length of time.

But in those times when I was wearing them they really did reduce the glare that I am now experiencing from my screen. They really did make focusing easier, which I normally have a pretty hard time with. I only tried them with web browsing though. TG is trying them with EQ2, and he says they’re making a huge difference. You’d think the yellow tint would degrade the game’s look, but it just doesn’t.

This isn’t to say they’re perfect. The frames feel flimsy for their price. They’re the kind of thing you need to be delicate with. They don’t appear to be adjustable either. The slight magnification they offer to reduce eye strain can be disorienting when not looking at a screen. I felt like I needed to remove them every time I looked away from the screen, which seemed a little annoying.

We’ve actually put in another order for a pair in a different style for me. They won’t arrive until next week, but I’m anxiously looking forward to getting them. I’m not ready to actually recommend them yet. But, once I get my hands on this new style, I will happily (or maybe not-so-happily) report on their viability.

Update 02/06/2012 (two months later): I can’t imagine how I’ve lived without these; even now, if I sit down at a computer without them, my eyes particularly notice and protest the glare. I’ve grown so used to the lovely yellow tint that everything looks a little off when I’m not wearing them. Unfortunately, they seem to cause me a little dry eye, which some other Amazon.com reviewers seem to mention, but I don’t get headaches from computer use anymore. Prior to getting these glasses, a headache would often come on in as little as an hour.

I wound up sticking with the Phantom frames since they squeezed TG’s head and exacerbated his headaches (the temple pieces curve inward at their ends). It just took adjusting to actually wearing glasses to get passed the fidgeting with them. TG has taken to the other pair we ordered. Though he normally wears prescription lenses for reading, he finds that using the Gunnar glasses instead of his bifocals has actually made gaming easier on his eyes.

They seem to smudge up quickly, but that might be due to my long eyelashes and how close I set the glasses to my eyes. Their durability could be a little better; the frames do feel flimsy, and I’ve put a barely noticeable scratch in one of the lenses already, but it doesn’t impair my vision or distract me.

If you have any problems with computer use or even if you just spend multiple hours each day staring at a computer monitor, I heartily recommend these glasses.

This is an unsolicited post that is totally my opinion. I purchased these glasses with my own money and was offered no incentive by anyone to make this post.

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About Amanda

Amanda is a 20-something flailing gamer. While she loves MMORPGs, the company in them often triggers flare-ups of her social anxiety. Her all-time favorite games include Everquest Online Adventures, Eternal Sonata, the Animal Crossing series, Katamari Damacy, and Rhapsody: A Musical Adventure. She lives on junk food, and her favorite books are equally trashy. She doesn't believe in putting two spaces after a period, but she does strongly believe in the serial comma. Unfortunately, she has a penchant for starting sentences with "and" and "but;" hopefully you won't hold that, or her excessive use of semicolons, against her.

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