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Thread: Sport Sunglasses that can go head to head with Oakley

  1. #1
    Master OptiBoarder
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    Sport Sunglasses that can go head to head with Oakley

    Hi Opti's - I was going to ask people's opinions of the best sport sunglasses, but then I searched the threads and realized I better be more specific.

    What sunglasses line that (not Rudy Project), can go head to head with Oakley in terms of:

    1. fit
    2. function
    3. optics
    4. sell-ability.

    Oakley has a nice line up for different sporting activities, they sell easy because their well known, and the seem to put a lot of science into their optics, and make them Rx-able.

    What line out there can compete with Oakley Sunglasses on these 4 points near the same price point?

  2. #2
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Silver Supporter Barry Santini's Avatar
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    Why Bother?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barry Santini View Post
    Why Bother?
    Not everyone shares your un-dying love for the "big" boys Barry, especially when another division of said company may be the retailer competeing with you across the street. You can feed your competition your money, some of us choose not to.

  4. #4
    Eyes eastward... Uilleann's Avatar
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    Oakley is Luxottica. Their optics are sub par in reality IMHO and nothing more than marketing smoke and mirrors. Smith makes a good product, superior in many ways as well, but they don't put the marketing oompf behind it the way O does. Smith snow goggles are the best on the mountain according to most out here. They're also generally more expensive. Call your local rep and have them bring in their gear. Look and judge for yourself.

  5. #5
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    Adidas, I think $ for $ is the best sports sunglass frame on the market.

  6. #6
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Silver Supporter Barry Santini's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by obxeyeguy View Post
    Not everyone shares your un-dying love for the "big" boys Barry, especially when another division of said company may be the retailer competeing with you across the street. You can feed your competition your money, some of us choose not to.
    Good products are good products. Oakley watches their distribution well, too. Brand recognition is a good thing for my business. They may compete with me, but I have found their products to sell well, and with comfortable margins. You can't escape the changes in distribution that are happening. I'm sure the course you're charting is doing well. I feel I can compete with anything...save same apples to apples, and no margins.

    Barry
    Last edited by Barry Santini; 02-04-2011 at 02:39 PM.

  7. #7
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    Personally, I've never cared for Oakley. Naturally, the only reason people get an Oakley frame is to say they have an Oakley frame. I think Maui Jim's are 10 times better but that's just my opinion :bbg:

  8. #8
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Silver Supporter Barry Santini's Avatar
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    Maui Jim frame ergonomics are pretty bad, IMHO. Oakley construction is far better, again IMHO. MJ lenses are excellent, though. IF MJ actually had a skilled ophthalmic dispenser vetting their frame fit, they'd be alot better off. I thin both are excellent sunglasses, as are Adidas and Ray Ban.

    B

  9. #9
    Master OptiBoarder CCGREEN's Avatar
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    I notice that Oakley tends to market toward the younger generation. I work in a Opthologmey practice and we had Oakley and maybe moved one pair a year. After a while we decided to let that line go.

    Ray ban now is more widely know with my clientèle. And we move a lot of Maui even in Rx through our office.

    The other thing I notice, what sells on the west coast may not move on the east coast and a lot of times what moves in north Florida will no move in south Florida.

    And it also has to do with a individuals pet line of sunglasses......just like some Dr.s like vistacon others want ciba others want B&L be it because of price of the product or success of the fit or even what they learned with and got comfortable with.

  10. #10
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Silver Supporter
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    Kaenon is expensive, but they have some very nice stuff. I sell Wiley X and think they're a good value.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Uilleann View Post
    Oakley is Luxottica. Their optics are sub par in reality IMHO and nothing more than marketing smoke and mirrors.....
    X2. I've never thought Oakley was anything more than marketing, marketing, marketing. IMHO their products are $2.00 materials/ $198.00 marketing.

    As to the OP:
    1. Rudy Project
    2. 7Eye
    3.Maui Jim
    Last edited by paulcr39; 02-05-2011 at 10:02 AM. Reason: chubby finger spelling fix

  12. #12
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Silver Supporter Barry Santini's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uilleann View Post
    Oakley is Luxottica. Their optics are sub par in reality IMHO and nothing more than marketing smoke and mirrors. Smith makes a good product, superior in many ways as well, but they don't put the marketing oompf behind it the way O does. Smith snow goggles are the best on the mountain according to most out here. They're also generally more expensive. Call your local rep and have them bring in their gear. Look and judge for yourself.
    In all the years (10) I've been selling Oakleys, I've only hand a handful of their plastic frames ever break, let alone prove defective. Pretty significant, IMHO.

    Uillean:
    Next chance you get, take a tour of Oakley's "Rolling *O*" lab, either at a nearby Mall, or at Vision Expo.

    Let me know what you think.

    Barry
    Last edited by Barry Santini; 02-05-2011 at 03:36 PM.

  13. #13
    Independent Owner kcount's Avatar
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    I'm with Barry on this one, why bother. In the end it's going to come down to sellability. I carry Oakley, not because I have a long love for them, but because my clientelle does. They also have an affinity to Maui Jim and Ray Ban thus I carry those lines too. In the end you want a good mix of price point and fashion and demographics. Oakley catters to a younger demographic, Maui Jim to an adult crowd. Look at your offices clientelle and make the call.

    For the record I also carry;

    Kaenon - Great lens, OK styling. (I carry this because I like it)
    WileyX - OK all the way around but good value line. (Sell the heck out of this)
    Tom Davies - Great styling and fit, average lens.
    Robert Marc - See above.
    Freudenhaus - See above.
    And a spattering of no name stuff I keep around for the price driven person.
    • Optician
    • Frame Maker/Designer
    • Teacher of the art of crafting handmade eyewear.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by AustinEyewear View Post
    What sunglasses line that (not Rudy Project), can go head to head with Oakley in terms of:

    1. fit
    2. function
    3. optics
    4. sell-ability.

    Oakley has a nice line up for different sporting activities, they sell easy because their well known, and the seem to put a lot of science into their optics, and make them Rx-able.

    What line out there can compete with Oakley Sunglasses on these 4 points near the same price point?
    None IMHO, I don't like feeding the beast anymore than any other person, BUT based on all 4 points listed (ESPECIALLY #4) Oakley rules the roost.
    I liked Maui Jims optics but they would not sell to the same type of client and they sell them wholesale at the BB retailers.

  15. #15
    Sawptician PAkev's Avatar
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    I've sold many an Oakley but also was the "try on" center for many folks that aquired them through other Oakley distribution alternatives. On a positive note: Oakleys product changes much faster than other manufacturers. However, this also means if you don't sell current styles in your inventory, you can't return it when they become discontinund sooner than later. Although I had a good representation of the product (investment), 90% of my Oakley sales came from about 10% of the product. When I tried to tune my inventory to a practical level the rep began giving me a hard time about returns. As a west coast vendor, it also was difficult to get a hold of them until the afternoon. Therefore when they were just getting their cup of coffee my business day would be up to speed and didn't have an extra 10 min to wait on the phone.

  16. #16
    What's up? drk's Avatar
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    Agree w/ Kev.

    Oakley's optics are routine, except for the 1/2 pd or so of BI prism they incorporate, which really matters IMHO.

    Frames are good construction, entirely original styling which is always copied, but fit is awkward for many.

    Company is a pain.

    Niche product, but a great niche.

  17. #17
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Gold Supporter DragonLensmanWV's Avatar
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  18. #18
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Silver Supporter Barry Santini's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drk View Post
    Agree w/ Kev.

    Oakley's optics are routine, except for the 1/2 pd or so of BI prism they incorporate, which really matters IMHO.

    Frames are good construction, entirely original styling which is always copied, but fit is awkward for many.

    Company is a pain.

    Niche product, but a great niche.
    drk, you really MUST take the *Rolling O" lab tour, and let me know if you feel the same way about their optics being "routine".

    B

  19. #19
    Eyes eastward... Uilleann's Avatar
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    Barry - please tell me you haven't bought into their little "experiments" in their "lab". It's marketing fluff to the nth degree. The claims they make are outlandish, and don't hold up in real-world sunwear applications. The best is their backwards laser collimator - love that one! hehehe The day we're all born with lasers shooting OUT of our eyeballs and we need to zap that pesky roach in the corner of the room, perhaps their optics might have some trifle of an advantage over....oh, I dunno...ANY other design?? Maybe? No - wait, that's not true. Because Oakleys were worn by that one guy in the movies who WAS born with laser eyeballs - and his lasers didn't work at all when he wore them.

    Prism in a sun lens is far from new, novel or any sort of ingenious thinking on the part of Oakley. And Barry, you of all of us should know, and appreciate the far superior optics of a glass sun lens like the ORIGINAL Rēvos, Persols, RayBans, Sunclouds, Vuarnets, Serengetis etc. over ANYTHING O might tout as superior in polycarbonate! And yes, this from a guy who actually doesn't mind dispensing Rx poly lenses all day long. :)

    It's just so much BS man, that I'm really surprised you bought it. And yeah, sadly, for the record, I've been in their "lab" many times over the years. Koolaid waiting at the door. Drink deep. :shiner::hammer::cheers:

  20. #20
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Silver Supporter Barry Santini's Avatar
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    I'm with you, Uillean. And I haven't bought it. My statements are to see if others had bought it. I, for the LIFE of me, COULD NOT figure out WTF was going on with why the tests of Oakley suns looked so good, while all the others (branded, too!) look so bad...especially the Air Force Resolution test! It *is* impressive, though. Having collimated my fair share of TV telescopes on an optical bench, as well as countless Newtonian/dobsonians in the field, I think I know a thing or too about testing and aligning optics

    That said, I *still* think, for the inherent low precision of ophthalmic optics, Oakley lenses are more than adequate...they are actually good.

    B

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