by Jared Williams, PCI #1214, Tacoma (WA) Police Department, Industry Relations Committee
Since the start of my law enforcement career over 10 years ago, I have been a firm believer in Oakley’s line of sunglasses, having owned the Half Jacket, Flak Jacket, and M frames. When I was sent the Tifosi Dolomites, it seemed like a good time to branch out and see what other quality lines of eyewear were out there, especially since my existing sunglasses had seen better days.
About the Dolomite 2.0
According to the Tifosi website, the Dolomote 2.0 tactical sunglasses are constructed of Grilamid TR-90, a homopolyamide nylon characterized by an extremely high alternative bending strength, low density, and high resistance to chemical and UV damage. They have hydrophilic rubber ear and nose pieces for a no-slip fit, and adjustable temples and nose pieces for custom fit. Both frame and lenses meet or exceed ANSI Z87.1 impact standards. The lenses meet or exceed ANSI Z87.1 standards for optical clarity and eye coverage. Clear lenses are ideal for indoor or low light conditions, high-contrast red for cloudy conditions and to boost contrast, and smoke for bright sunlight. The glasses measure 141mm wide and weigh 29 grams.
The Dolomites are light, weighing in at just over an ounce. I was hopeful they would be hardly noticeable when I wore them, but that wasn’t initially the case. The nosepiece sits higher on my nose than I was used to and I found it a bit uncomfortable. After wearing the Dolomites for a few days, I did get accustomed to them, though I always seemed to notice they were there. I had to occasionally adjust the nose pads to maintain a comfortable fit. The ear pieces were comfortable and never seemed to bother me. Overall, the Dolomites were comfortable to wear for long periods of time.
The optics of all three lens sets are on par with new Oakley lenses. I found the optics to be clear and crisp, with no noticeable haziness or change of vision throughout the lens curve. The biggest thing I noticed about these glasses was the full frame. I typically wear open-bottom lenses, so that took a little getting used to. The bottom of the lens frame sat close enough to my cheek that it didn’t impede my field of vision.
The smoke lenses provided adequate tinting even in the brightest environments. The clear lenses were optimal for low-light environments and overcast days when the sun never broke through the clouds. I’ve never been a fan of wearing lenses that change the color of my environment, such as the red lenses included in this kit. The high-contrast red lenses provided some tinting in sunny conditions, enough to take the edge off, but I likely wouldn’t wear them regularly. Furthermore, the red lenses detract from the natural landscape and beauty of the Pacific Northwest. Even on overcast days, for which the red lenses are designed, I still preferred the clear or smoke lenses as they did not significantly alter the color palette I was viewing. If you don’t mind the color alteration, the red lenses perform adequately on overcast days.
Swapping out the lenses seemed a bit tricky at first. Of course, once I actually read the directions, it wasn’t terribly difficult. Even after multiple lens swaps, the lenses all stay very securely in the frame. I have not noticed any damage or wear to the lenses or frames even after numerous swaps. I actually can’t say that about my Oakley’s, which often wear out the lens and/or the frames with frequent lens swaps.
The Dolomites seem very durable. The frame material and construction are sound, and as I said, the lenses swap out fairly easily with no noticeable wear. Overall, I would say they are a bit more durable than any of the Oakley’s I have owned.
The Dolomites provide good coverage over the eyes, which is adequate for general use and slow speed riding. However, at higher speeds, I noted they didn’t block the wind as much as I would have liked. This is likely due to the gap between my eyebrows and the top of the sunglasses, and the fact that the frames sit a touch further off of my face than I prefer.
Tifosi makes numerous lens shades to fit the Dolomite 2.0, including polarized versions. However, none except the three in this kit have earned the ANSI Z87.1 rating. Tifosi also has “Fototec” technology available with some of their lenses. Fototec is a photo-chromatic technology that changes the level of tint in the lens based on the amount of light. I am attempting to secure a set of these lenses for further testing, and may offer a review at a later time.
Overall, the Tifosi Dolomite 2.0 Tactical is a decent set of sunglasses at a reasonable price. Retail is $69.95 for the set, with replacement lenses available starting at around $15. Tifosi also offers a wide line-up of styles and color choices if you are looking for something other than “tactical black.”
Tifosi participates in the IPMBA Product Purchase Program, offering 40% off MSRP.
Email Maureen@tifosioptics.com for a discount code and ordering instructions to be used on www.sibasports.com.
Visit www.tifosioptics.com to browse their selection of products.
Jared is currently a Police Patrol Officer for the Tacoma Police Department. He loves to tinker, and can often be found obsessing of the mechanical state of his bicycles. Jared is the owner and operator of Piggies On Wheels, LLC, which exists for the purpose of public safety bicycle education. To learn more, go to https://www.facebook.com/PiggiesOnWheels. Jared can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
(c) 2015 IPMBA. This review appeared in the Summer 2015 issue of IPMBA News.