Value Comparison: Mykita vs. RoundTen vs. IC Berlin

Value Comparison between Mykita vs. RoundTen vs IC Berlin


Value comparisons are a powerful tool in evaluating and quantifying the value proposition that products provides consumers.  We are living in a time when every manufacturer claims their product is of the highest "quality", but they don't substantiate their claims with analysis.  We are here to provide clear and transparent comparisons between similar items and provide our readers with great value in the form of functional and useful information.


The three products we are comparing today are:

1. Mykita

2. RoundTen

3. IC Berlin

All three of these products are manufactured within the European Union (Spain and Germany) and their main component is Stainless Steel.  They each have their proprietary blend or grade of stainless steel, but we consider this to be more of what makes them similar and only provide a negligible difference in determining any Value Comparative Advantage.


Torture Test:

The torture test is a test we use to measure and compare how the eyeglasses perform under abuse.  I understand that abuse is not covered under warranty, but it is essential in predicting how these very pricey products perform under extreme wear-and-tear.  We cover a wooden table with a microfiber cloth and we smash the frames repeatedly while the frames have their temples folded. We repeat the torture test 5 times.  This torture test simulates extreme impact or stress (ie: car running over them).

1. Mykita performed well and passed.  The Mykita frames needed significant adjustment for them to return to regular condition.

2. RoundTen performed well and passed.  The RoundTen frames needed minimal adjustment for them to return to regular condition.

3. IC Berlin performed well 2 out of the 5 times.  The temples fell apart and had to be reassembled 3 out of the 5 times.  The IC Berlin frames needed major adjustment for them to return to regular condition.


Quality:

The quality of the Mykita, RoundTen and of the IC Berlin products is similar and I would rate it as great quality.  The design is what separates these three leaders in stainless steel frame manufacturing. IC Berlin over simplified the hinge and fail relative to the Mykita and RoundTen collections' design.  Quality is not subjective and neither is design when one lays out clearly the conditions under which the products are graded.

I would like add many peoples' disappointment with IC Berlin over the years.  The temples prove time and time again to be IC Berlin's vulnerability that continues to be ignored.  The temples coming apart is not a rare event isolated and exposed by our torture test. The temples pop out under normal wear-and-tear conditions without any warning or signs of fatigue.


Fit and Comfort:

Fit and comfort are subjective, but still very respected aspect of relative value comparison.

1. Mykita fits wonderful because it is able to be fitted to the contour of the person's head.  The current generation of temple design solves all of the limitations of the 1st generation design.  Thank you, Mykita for listening and adapting to the marketplace.

2. RoundTen also fits wonderful because it is also able to be fitted to the contour of the person's head.  RoundTen had the luxury of learning from the lessons of other companies by taking their time and designing a great pair of frames.  

3. IC Berlin limits themselves greatly as to who they might appeal to with their paddle temple design.  The IC Berlin temple cannot be adjusted in the traditional manner and the flat stainless steel only wraps around the back of the head.  Very awkward to most, leaving the customer with a polarizing opinion that tilts on the negative side.


Price:


Comparing Mykita, RoundTen, and IC Berlin on price is where it all begins to get very clear as to the decision on which frame manufacturer provides the most value overall.

1. Mykita sells for over $600 with a few locations selling it for $800

2. RoundTen sells for over $300 with a few locations selling it for $400

3. IC Berlin sells for over $600 with a few locations selling it for $800


Final Thoughts:

IC Berlin and Mykita are great products and are well made, but RoundTen wins this Value Comparison because it offers a great product at a significantly lower price.  Price is what you pay, Value is what you receive.


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What are Transitions Lenses? How Do Transitions Lenses Work?

What are Transitions Lenses? How Do Transitions Lenses Work?

What is a Transitions Lens?

Transitions Lenses are Photochromic lenses that are clear indoors and get dark outside. The transitions lenses get activated with direct exposure to UV rays. They are available in several colors, but the most popular colors are:
1. Grey
2. Brown

The Transitions lenses block 100% of the harmful UV Rays and can be very impact resistant when purchased in polycarbonate or trivex materials.

How Do Transitions Lenses Work?

It is a fascinated question that my son asked me while having dinner the other night.  The answer is:
An important fact to know is that there is a thin portion of the lens that is injected with the organic material that gets activated with UV rays.  The entire lens does not have those activating properties.  The front surface of the lens that is spread evenly across the surface area is the only part of the lens that gets dark. 
It is also good to know that how dark the lens gets when exposed to direct UV rays is inversely correlated to outside temperature.  
Example: 
The Transitions lens will get darker at colder temperatures as opposed to when it is exposed to UV rays at 100 degrees fahrenheit.  It is the biggest complaint from people that invest in the purchase of these lenses with the expectation that the lens will replace their sunglasses.  
I always like to say to people that transisions lenses are great, but do not replace the sunglasses because the sunglasses I recommend have polarized lenses.
Keep that in mind when deciding if Transitions Lenses (photochromic lenses) will solve the vision problem you are having.

How Long Do Transition Lenses Last?
Under normal circumstances, which we tend to refer to as "normal wear-and-tear" would be two years.  Depending on the conditions of use, they will fatigue around the two year mark.  I've seen the transitions lenses last much longer than two years, by the way.  Fatigue means they remain slightly activated and don't return to almost clear status as when they were newer. 

Final Thoughts:
Transitions or photochromic lenses are great to have in your wardrobe of eyewear.  They have a purpose, but what they don't do is they don't completely replace your sunglasses.  
So make sure you still have a pair of polarized sunglasses that protect you against the sun's harmful rays and filter light in a way that they eliminate all light coming in from oblique angles.  This is what makes polarized lenses superior to transitions lenses outdoors.  
Transition lenses are great and you should have a pair.
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What is a Progressive Lens? and How do I use a Progressive Lens?

What is a Progressive Lens? and How do I use a Progressive Lens?

What is a Progressive Lens? and How do I use a Progressive Lens?

Progressive lenses are lenses that allow you to see at different focal lengths.  Progressive lenses have three main focal lengths: distance vision, intermediate vision, and close up vision.
Progressive lenses are the best solution to the problem of having to change eyeglasses to view at different distances.  

1. Distance Vision: 
The top part of the lens is specifically for distance vision. We define distance vision as a focal length minimum of 20 feet.  20 feet is the magical "distance" because it is when our eyes are not converging and are parallel.  This part of the progressive lens is the widest, with some lenses providing beyond a 165 degree viewing angle, depending on the patient's prescription and optimization done by the progressive lens design.  When accessing the distance portion of your progressive lens, one must look at eye level or above, which means that if you want to look at something that is below eye level, one would move your chin down until the object comes into focus.  

2. Intermediate Vision: 
The intermediate part of the lens is specifically for intermediate vision.  We define intermediate vision as a focal length of arm's length away (30 to 36 inches).  The intermediate portion of the progressive lens is accessed exactly 4 millimeters below eye level.  The progressive lens narrows in the most at the intermediate level, so you will have to point your nose to the object you would like to be in focus.  The most common function of the intermediate is for computer use and for desk related tasks.  Limitations would arise if your computer monitor is at eye level (and couldn't be lowered) or if you couldn't adjust the elevation of your chair to fine tune the focal length.

3. Near Vision:
The near part of the lens is specifically for close range.  We define near vision or close-up vision as 16 to 18 inches away.  The lens at this range is wider than the intermediate, but narrower than the distance portion of the progressive lens.  This part of the lens is perfect to look at your watch, to navigate your phone, and to read a book.  On most progressive lens designs, the near vision starts when the lens offers 85% of the full reading power of your prescription.  Depending on the length of the progressive lens corridor, 85% of the full power is accessed at 14 to 16 millimeters below the optical center of the lens.  Expect for everything beyond 16 to 18 inches to not be in focus.  It is normal for your watch to be crystal clear and then to look at your shoes while standing and notice that the shoes are blurry.  From that point of view, you can get your shoes into focus by either raising your foot or by lowering your chin towards your chest until the shoes come into focus (because you would then be looking at the shoes via the intermediate portion of the lens, not the near part).

Progressive lenses are a great solution to the inconvenience of having to carry around three separate eyeglasses that have prescriptions for three different focal lengths.  It is also great for people that have been blessed with great distance vision and don't wear distance correction.  Usually, this is a condition that occurs in everyone called Presbyopia.  People with presbyopia are often annoyed from having to take their reading glasses off and on, and off and on, ALL DAY LONG!!  Progressive lenses allows them to have the glasses on and gives them use of both of their hands again.  We've helped many people become much more productive by suggesting progressive lenses even though they see wonderful far away. 
Have you tried our Progressive lens technology? If you haven't, give us a call or email us a question. We love helping people see better!
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How to Match Glasses with My Face Shape

How to Match Glasses with My Face Shape

Glasses are now being worn by everyone wanting to put an exclamation mark to their outfit.  Glasses are the essential accessory that completes your outfit.  Modeling the right pair of glasses first begins with identifying our face shape, so let's take this step by step. 

Step 1. Identify Your Face Shape
There are many face shape variations, but generally we have four categories that we narrow down to, so match your face shape to the category that is closest to your face features. 
Square Shaped,
Round Shaped,
Oval Shaped, and
Heart Shaped (sometimes referred to as Diamond because it resembles the side view of a diamond placed on a ring).

The secret to identifying our face shape is to first determine where the widest part of our face actually is.
-Square Shaped Faces uniquely share this "widest point of the face" trait throughout the forehead, cheeks, and chin.
-Round Shaped Faces have the widest point of their face on the cheeks and the forehead and chin area is rounded.
-Oval Shaped Faces have the widest point of their face on the cheeks and forehead and chin area narrows or tapers in.
-Heart Shaped Faces have the widest point of their face on the forehead with their cheeks also being wide and then narrowing or tapering in at the chin.

Step 2: Identify the Glasses Frames as Potential Choices

a. Square Shaped Faces and squared jaws are softened and lengthened by soft and rounded frame shapes. Rounded corners (on square-ish frames) also help reduce the sharp angles to square shaped face.

b. Round Shaped Faces should look at frames that are wider (width from temple to temple) than they are deeper (height of lens orbital). I refer to this as the Width to Height Ratio. Visualizing this description...wider than than it is deeper is a rectangle shaped frame. So, Round Shaped Faces should wear Rectangle Shaped Frames because it creates the illusion of elongating the face. Not every rectangle frame is created equal.  Some rectangle frames have harder corners or are more geometric and strong.  With a round shaped face, please choose these frames. Sharper corners on frames are definitely your friend!   Round shaped faces should always stay away from round frames and rounded cornered frames (I refer to rounded corners as soft corners).  

c. Oval Shaped Faces are blessed with the ability to look great in any shape of frames.  While, every shape looks great; make sure you are styled with the right size of frame.  The number one mistake is to get a frame that is either too small or too big for your face.  You've got it the easiest, don't ruin it!

d. Heart Shaped Faces have it the second easiest in picking glasses shapes.  The number one shape for heart shaped faces is the wayfarer. The top part of the frame is rectangular, but the bottom half is rounded.  The classic wayfarer shape can come in acetate, metal, or a combination of both by being acetate on the top part and metal on the bottom.  Besides the wayfarer, your heart-shaped face looks amazing with any frame shape.

The secret to matching face shape with eyeglasses is one word: Contrast

Step 3: Proportion/Size 
Adding more detail to specific characteristics/nuances of frame shapes/face shapes
With proportions, we are now putting the magnifying glass over how the glasses fit.  We want to guide you towards glasses that fit and look balanced.  
Where the eyes are on the frames are also important depending on the design of the frames.  Some styles are designed so the eyes are centered on the frame while other styles are designed so the eyes are on the top one-third of the lens (leaving two-thirds of the frame below the eye level).

Step 4: Variety
Just like you wouldn't wear flip flops to a formal event, or run a marathon in high-heels, you can't reasonably expect to have one pair of glasses for every occasion or activity.  Build your wardrobe of eyewear over time and enjoy the process. 

Bonus Tip:  The amount you spend on frames is never a good predictor of how happy you will be with the glasses.  The best predictor of how happy you will be is how well and comfortable the glasses are.  

Eyeglasses are a great way to add dimension, character, and detail to your personality!  Express yourself through the eyewear you choose!
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I Will Outwork My Competitors

I Will Outwork My Competitors

A very intelligent person asked me a great question today: "How can you succeed where there are many opticals in your vicinity, how will you do it?"
My answer, "I will outwork my competitors. My competitors have become complacent and entitled. They stopped providing value to the public years ago. Most only go to work a few times a week and don't want to be bothered with problems.  Providing value is the only reason to exist. I define value as giving way more than what people pay for - (providing higher quality, information, guidance, passion, a helping hand within my ability to provide).  My competitors have been blessed and I'm happy for them. Times have changed and they don't see it."

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