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    What Lens are truly Freeform?

    We are in the process of reorganizing our optical price structure to a Good, Better, Best system. What are considered the Best lens that use true free form tecnology? Zeiss Individual, Hoya ID lifestyle, and Physio Enhanced are some of the products we are considering. Is the Reveal Freeform truly a freeform lens?

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    The Man, The Myth, The Legend OptiBoard Gold Supporter Fezz's Avatar
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    I like Seiko.

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    OptiWizard OptiBoard Silver Supporter anthonyf1509's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fezz:407716
    I like Seiko.
    +1
    I've been told physio is not free form

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    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Gold Supporter Judy Canty's Avatar
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    Optimized free form: Autograph, Autograph II Fixed, Element, Spectrum, Succeed, Supercede, GT2-3D, SightStar365, Unique, Comfort DRx, Physio DRx.
    Individualized free form: Autograph II Variable, Individual, Surmount.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CuriousCat View Post
    Optimized free form: Autograph, Autograph II Fixed, Element, Spectrum, Succeed, Supercede, GT2-3D, SightStar365, Unique, Comfort DRx, Physio DRx.
    Individualized free form: Autograph II Variable, Individual, Surmount.
    I have had nothing but pure "wow" and sucess with any and ALL Shamir products! (Free-form only) I have been using these lenses pretty exclusively for the past year, and honestly, have never had it easier @ disp! For PAL's I use the Auto II about 80% of the time..the other 20% is split between the Element or a Spectrum lens. Now for SV nothing can beat the Autograph II SV either! We give our pt's a slight savings on premium AR to try and get them into this lens, I am that happy with it.
    Now the new freeform Relax lens by Shamir is terrific! I doubt I will ever wear anything else!..

    My 2cents.

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    Ya... but Shamir is also available at Lenscrafters and Walmart and most of the other chains

    If Walmart has it I don't need it....

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    Quote Originally Posted by EyeMaster View Post
    Ya... but Shamir is also available at Lenscrafters and Walmart and most of the other chains

    If Walmart has it I don't need it....
    Eww.... I will have to check into that! Although, it seems like "chains" can get almost everything now. And just because they can "get" it doesn't mean that they use it.
    Last edited by n711; 02-22-2012 at 09:14 PM.

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    True and False.... Lenscrafters and Walmart uses discontinued Shamir lenses which means your patient cannot get the latest technology lens they offer from them
    .
    Quote Originally Posted by EyeMaster View Post
    Ya... but Shamir is also available at Lenscrafters and Walmart and most of the other chains

    If Walmart has it I don't need it....

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    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Silver Supporter rdcoach5's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mpuzio34 View Post
    We are in the process of reorganizing our optical price structure to a Good, Better, Best system. What are considered the Best lens that use true free form tecnology? Zeiss Individual, Hoya ID lifestyle, and Physio Enhanced are some of the products we are considering. Is the Reveal Freeform truly a freeform lens?
    Yes , but if you read the forum , it is not the most current design. In fact, as I understand it is the original Autograpgh 1 design, or similar. Zeiss Individual is way better in my Rx than Physio enhanced , FWIW. So is Autograph 2

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    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Gold Supporter Judy Canty's Avatar
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    Bear in mind, when you read all the marketing, all free form designs are produced digitally, but not all digitally produced lenses are free form.
    "Jargon is the last refuge of the scoundrel." --Roger Ebert

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    Ok, so we will take out Physio Enhanced from that "Best" Category. From the free form lens that are truly customized what gives the greatest "wow' factor? We are leaning towards Zeiss Individual at this point in time. I just wanted to see what other professionals had experienced.

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    All About Freeform:
    The industry really has 3 levels of technology with ALL processes using the same basic equipment.

    Level 1: <Not Freeform> Digital processing of a conventional lens (progressive design all on the front), with the design “enhanced” as one mfg says. This process doesn’t do much for the lens design, so a crummy progressive design that is digitally process will still be a crummy lens.

    Level 2: <True Freeform> Process turns a semi-finished single vision lens into a progressive (progressive design all on the back) . This is the Seiko-Epson process and is what almost freeform is today. Seiko-Epson licenses the lens companies who in-turn sub-license the production labs. So the lab process is the same with all products with the only difference from one progressive product to another being the lens design.

    Level 3: <True Freeform> Process starts with a lens that is neither single vision or progressive (progressive design partly on the front and partly on the back) This HOYA process uses both sides of the lens to create their so-called iD progressives. This process offers advantages and also provides some availability issues when compared to the “Level 2” process/products.



    Summary/My Opinion:
    Level 1 is not free-form (forget about it). Faux Freeform

    Level 2 products are all the same Seiko-Epson process so they're all made the same way. Sample them all for lens design differences and advantages/disadvantages. Great product availability and best for larger eye sizes/base curves because they start with just about any semi-finished single vision lens. True Freeform

    Level 3 products may provide less distortion and better optics for dress eyewear because of their front/back design. This process has some availability issues with larger frames and base curves that Level 2 products like Shamir might address. True Freeform

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    Master OptiBoarder TLG's Avatar
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    Check out this chart of digitally surfaced lenses. It describes the front and back surface of each to help give you an idea of what is truly freeform.

    thelensguru.com/digitalChart.php

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    Quote Originally Posted by EyeMaster View Post
    Level 3 products may provide less distortion and better optics for dress eyewear because of their front/back design. This process has some availability issues with larger frames and base curves that Level 2 products like Shamir might address. True Freeform
    I would digress a bit. Some of Hoya's lenses are cast on the front, digital on the back, so I would consider those products Hybrid lenses, not True Free-form.

    Also, I believe that unless the patient is very high Hyperope, it results in lower potential distortion to keep the front of the lens clean and spherical. Concave curves will impact light to a greater degree against a convex surface (front) than they will on another concave surface (back). Hoya, by adding base-up/base-out prism to the corners (concave on convex) of the lenses does reducing geometric distortions, but at the cost of rendering some of those corner less clear. Its a trade off.

    I don't believe just because its dual sided, doesn't make it inherently better, until you get into powers over a +5.00 sphere. Then the numbers change and moving some of the add power to the front makes sense. At that point the back gets so flat the distortion on the back exceeds that of the front, and even in Free-form we don't often use 14 base blanks.
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    I am also a huge fan of the the Zeiss Individual lens. I have had great success with fitting this lens.

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    Quote Originally Posted by spekladie View Post
    I am also a huge fan of the the Zeiss Individual lens. I have had great success with fitting this lens.
    Thank you SpekLadie.

    I did not mean to sound like I am promoting Shamir, though I did mean to sound less than enamored with the Kodak Unique. I prefer lenses that allow the optician to tailor the Free Form power progression.

    There are many Free Form progressives that can be customized. Zeiss, Seiko, Shamir, Hoya, and independent labs with private label Free Form lenses - All have Free Form lenses that allow the optician to specify the fixed fitting height.
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    Currently, EyeMaster is correct, Zeiss Invididual in the U.S. is all on the back surface. The original Individual in Germany/Europe is on both surfaces. Not sure what is to come or what is being processed in Germany currently, hearing some rumors though.

    I'm glad someone knocked the Physio Enhanced off the list earlier. Isn't it interesting the different levels of education vs. marketing that happens in this industry. How some will just take what is packaged up neatly and handed to them, without doing a little research and educating themselves.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mpuzio34 View Post
    We are in the process of reorganizing our optical price structure to a Good, Better, Best system. What are considered the Best lens that use true free form tecnology? Zeiss Individual, Hoya ID lifestyle, and Physio Enhanced are some of the products we are considering. Is the Reveal Freeform truly a freeform lens?
    I would counter that there is no one BEST lens. Different lifestyles have different needs, so the Best Lens is the lens that compliments a patients lifestyle the most. In general Wider Fields of view are good, but it depends where that wideness falls. Although the Auto II is immensely better than the Comfort, the reading can actually be narrower in the Auto II. If my patient reads a lot, she would be disappointed with her new lenses. There are Free-form lenses with wider reading than the Comfort though, but you get my drift.

    It should be noted too, that those lenses requiring advanced measurements such as Panto, Wrap and Face Form will only benefit about 10% of our patient based on RX. I see myself better in the Spectrum than the Auto II in my low RX.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sharpstick777 View Post
    I would counter that there is no one BEST lens. Different lifestyles have different needs, so the Best Lens is the lens that compliments a patients lifestyle the most. In general Wider Fields of view are good, but it depends where that wideness falls. Although the Auto II is immensely better than the Comfort, the reading can actually be narrower in the Auto II. If my patient reads a lot, she would be disappointed with her new lenses. There are Free-form lenses with wider reading than the Comfort though, but you get my drift.

    It should be noted too, that those lenses requiring advanced measurements such as Panto, Wrap and Face Form will only benefit about 10% of our patient based on RX. I see myself better in the Spectrum than the Auto II in my low RX.
    You say there are freeform lenses with wider channels than the comfort? which ones? I've tried moving a couple people from the comfort to the Auto II, unique, etc... and most I've had to switch back? One pt brought in a display visually showing me what he was seeing with both ( he was a wierdo, oops i mean an engineer..) Also, what are some of you using if a pt wants or needs a really wide intermediate but still have a low seg ht, other than restyling to a larger one? I feel most people would benefit from a wider intermediate than reading due to all the electronic gadgets we use.

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    If you are interested in better computer area than the Auto II, the widest I have seen is the Seiko Surmount, the second widest the Definity, the third the Hoya ID. The last two are Plus shaped in the effective area so the distance narrows significantly. In both the Definity and the Hoya ID I only turn my head a hair in the distance and it gets blurry. With the Surmount I get an effective distance zone that is about 5 or 6 times wider than the Plus shaped lenses mentioned, the Surmount is more Barrell shaped for the effective areas. Any of these will give you about 5-8 times the intermediate zone of the Auto II or Comfort, and about 1.5x more reading. The Definity does have more reading than the Surmount by about 25% but it will depend on RX.
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    Quote Originally Posted by dash1 View Post
    I've tried moving a couple people from the comfort to the Auto II, unique, etc... and most I've had to switch back?
    This representative was incredibly knowledgeable when I was looking at similar challenges.

    Jerry Thornhill
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    T: (858) 444-3863| C: (858) 740-6518 | F: (877) 285-4863
    jthornhill@shamirlens.com

    Jerry said successfully moving patients from Comfort to Autograph II is a challenge, and that the Spectrum design is especially good for these patients and also for patients with higher plus prescriptions. You might want to talk with him.

    I had a lengthy conversation with a Kodak Unique rep at Vision Expo East. My contention is that the software does not allow the optician to tailor the lens. All big frames get long corridors by default, even if the patient has successfully and happily worn a short corridor prior to the Unique. In my opinion, that is the reason so many offices experienced failure with Free Form when they tried to move patients wearing traditional Essilor lenses to Kodak Unique lenses.

    The rep essentially explained that the optician should always put the patient into the longest corridor possible, for Every Day progressives AND sell second pair computer progressives. I was not persuaded. Personally, I greatly prefer to wear short corridor lenses. AND, I believe ECPs should have a well defined comprehensive product mix with Free Form lenses a skilled optician can tailor to the patient rather than letting the software tailor progressives to the frame selected. Because so many offices have had non-adapt problems with Kodak Unique, it is not high on my list of favorite lenses.
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    Always learning OptiBoard Bronze Supporter
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    Quote Originally Posted by RKJ View Post
    My contention is that the software does not allow the optician to tailor the lens. All big frames get long corridors by default...
    Not only that, but for narrow frames, the software will decrease the corridor length for those who rarely read with their eyeglasses (distance -2.50 DS Add +2.50). Many PALs do this now, including those from Zeiss, Essilor, Shamir, and others. At least Shamir offers a fixed lens for those dispensing opticians that are giving some thought to what this all means, from the wearer's perspective.

    The rep essentially explained that the optician should always put the patient into the longest corridor possible, for Every Day progressives AND sell second pair computer progressives.
    That's what I do with my eyeglasses, and for most of my clients (Adds over +2.00) who have significant intermediate tasks. I wouldn't necessarily use the longest corridor, but I would choose a PAL design that had above average distance vision, something you won't find with any of the more aggressive short corridor PALs.
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    Our lens design considers the position of wear and tailors the full reading zone of our standard lens to start at 23 degrees downward gaze, it is independent of the depth of the frame but requires the fitter to establish the face form, vertex and pantoscopic angle.

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    Let me start off by putting it out there:

    Im Kurt Gardner, Sales and Support Manager for IOT America: a independent lens design house dealing exclusively in House branded Digital PAL's

    Here is my take on Freeform.
    There is no BEST, rather its all about what works best for the patient, but I would look for a lens that best suits your needs and that if your customer is happy they will keep coming back when the need new ones.
    We could look at a mountain of power maps and each say one is better than the other. There are disadvantages to having a Spherical front; namely that when fitting base curves on mild hyperopes generally a steeper curve is needed then when using a conventional product because the front curve needs to be chosen for the highest plus power, if a flatter curve is chosen then optics specifically in the near visual field are compromised as the rear surface curve approaches Plano. However for any myopes or higher hyperopes who are used to steep curves this has little effect.

    There are also disavantages to having a dual surface design, the one that effects most dispensers is in availability of materials, and inventory issues. How many times does a job get delayed because we have the right blank but not the left, or not in transitions, etc.

    We also haven't even touched on is the lens optimized (or compensated) or not. Non Compensated designs offer no great advantage to conventional progressives except the design is more recent. Where we can really start to show the capabilities of digital processing is when we begin to compensate for environmental factors that effect the wearer experience.

    Ok Ill be quiet now

    If you want more information just PM me

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    Quote Originally Posted by hyperoptic View Post
    We also haven't even touched on is the lens optimized (or compensated) or not. Non Compensated designs offer no great advantage to conventional progressives except the design is more recent. Where we can really start to show the capabilities of digital processing is when we begin to compensate for environmental factors that effect the wearer experience.
    Kurt, could you please clarify what you define as "compensated"? There is some word in the market that only Free-form lenses that offer "customized" vertex, face form and panto calculations are truly better. However, I have seen usage studies from both manufacturers and universities where only about 11% of patients benefit from those advanced compensations (Essilors says 9%).

    All true-free form are compenstated with at atoric, base curve, ect, and most use standard averages of tilt and vertex. So when you say "compenstated" are refering to the standard ones, or the fully customized ones?

    And if you mean that only the highly customized compensated lenses are better, do you have any usage studies your company has done (or at least read) to support that? Right now the ones I have seen do not.
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