For its performance V-Ti sunglasses, Smith is using two titanium alloys, much like what’s used in bike manufacturing. The alpha titanium on the face front of the glasses gives the shades a lighter weight and resilience. The beta ti on the temples is super flexy, conforming to your head shape, giving them the “Where are my glasses, oh they’re on my head” feeling. Both alloys are soldered together, allowing you to bend the temples at the junction to fit your custom head shape.
For the lenses, Smith uses a Tapered Lens Technology, or TLT optics for short, which gives the lens a precise thickening as it curves from the outside to the middle of the lens. As such, the TLT optics account for the curve of your eye and the lens so the light enters your glasses and your eyes without distortion.
So how did all this technology fit on my face and feel on my eyes? Comfortable and light, to say the least. I was hesitant about the titanium metal along my temples but after a few rides, the flexy, padded metal conformed to my head and didn’t squeeze in. On multi-hour rides, they felt a part of my head. I appreciated the flex when I realized they could hold up to being shoved in my commuter bag time and again. The light through the lens was indeed uniform throughout. The shape also allowed a nice air flow on hot summer rides. In one small annoyance, Smith puts its name and logo right on the lens, in the lower corners. At first, the marketing trick bothered me, like a bug pestering my sight, but after hours of wearing these, I stopped noticing it altogether. Overall, the V-Ti technology proves itself in comfort over big rides and varying light.
The V-Ti come in a padded and zippered, semi-hard carrying case that stores your glasses and three replaceable lens options (polarized copper, ignitor and clear mirror), in addition to a soft bag for both holding and wiping down the sunglasses. MSRP: $179. Lifetime warranty.