First Look: Uvex's Electronic Sunglasses and Convertible Helmet - Eurobike 2015

Aug 28, 2015
by Mike Kazimer  
UVEX Variotronic

Uvex's Electronic Sunglasses

Uvex's new Variotronic sunglasses seem like something out of a science fiction movie, allowing riders to change the tint of their lens at the push of a button. The change from 64% to 16% visible light transmission takes only one-tenth of a second, a feature that anyone who's ever been momentarily blinded after emerging into the bright sunlight from a dark forest, or vice versa, can appreciate. That number is also considerably quicker than photochromic lenses, which typically take over twenty seconds to adjust to changing light conditions. The Variotronic also has an automatic mode, where a built in sensor changes the tint depending on the amount of ambient light. The technology for the lenses was originally developed for military applications, but Uvex is now concentrating on implementing it into eyewear for cyclists.

How Do They Work?

The key to the Variotronic's tint-altering magic is a liquid crystal film that's laminated to the lens. When electricity is run through the material, a charge that's supplied by the glasses' USB rechargeable battery, the alignment of the liquid crystals is altered, changing the tint. Battery life is said to be 50 hours, enough time to fit in multiple all-day epics before plugging them in. Initially there will be two frame styles offered when the glasses hit the market in late October / early November for €300.
Views: 11,687    Faves: 3    Comments: 1


UVEX Variotronic
UVEX Variotronic
The Variotronic's battery is housed in the left arm, and uses a micro-USB port for recharging.


UVEX


Jakkyll Hde 2-in-1 Helmet

Uvex also had a prototype of their upcoming two-in-one helmet on display, Called the Jakkyl Hde (yes, that's how they spell it - it's the German equivalent to Jekyll and Hyde), the helmet has two dials that can be turned to release the laminated fiberglass chin bar for those long uphill slogs, and then it can be quickly reinstalled before the fun begins.

The final weight is expected to be 630 grams, a very competitive number for this style of helmet. Other features include a retention system that uses BOA's ratcheting dial to adjust the fit around the head, and a visor with enough range of motion to fit goggles underneath. Final safety standard certifications are still underway, but Uvex say that they're planning on having it meet all of the EU standards as well as those required by the CPSC. Expect the Jakkyl Hde to retail for €199 when it becomes available in Spring 2016.



UVEX
The Jakkyl Hde will also be available in this configuration, and the chinbar can be purchased separately.



92 Comments

  • + 111
 I'll buy the sunglasses when they have built in wipers with 3 speeds.
  • + 10
 Then they will be $500! lol
  • + 3
 @wythall1 i will wait for second hand than ...someware around 2017 i guess Razz
  • + 3
 They don't need wipers, they need a fan/heating system to kill the temperature gradient so they don't fog. A decent flexible fender will keep the mud off.
  • + 7
 $340 for sunglasses? Brahahahahahahahahahah

I'll stick with my $40 goggles...
  • + 3
 £7 for tinted lens CAT construction glasses, £3 for clear lens. I think I'll stick with the extra few grams and save £185, plus you never have to say "I can't come out riding today, I need to charge my sunglasses"
  • + 7
 Same Technology is used for welding helmets. you can adjust the shades of darkness to suite your taste. This has been around for a while.....They work great until you drop them, then you can throw them in the trash......Only downfall.

www.millerwelds.com/products/welding_protection/head_face
  • + 6
 eGlasses?...and I thought it was a pain in the ass to charge my lights for night riding. They should be solar so you never have to charge them...now there's an idea


Batteries now on suspension, shifting, and seatposts as well.
No thanks. It would take 3 hours just to get ready for a ride then you are thinking about your battery life the whole time.
  • + 3
 @jlhenterprises: I love how people overdramatize how much time it would take to charge electronic components. Even if you had to charge it after every ride (which you don't), plugging in all of that stuff would take about the same amount of time it takes to lube your fork stanchions.
  • + 5
 No problem using that for MTB then, since there's no risk of impact...
  • + 4
 Once they have a wireless remote that mounts to the handlebar, I will buy them, or voice command that would be great.....
  • + 10
 There are people that pay way more than $350 for glasses that DON'T feature any electronics. Go to any high end roadie store and have your mind blown!
  • + 5
 those glasses could be badass.
  • + 18
 I just ride with my welding helmet on... Much cheaper and offers full face protection....
  • + 1
 Once they have 10 speed wiper setting I'm in.
  • + 1
 what about a wifi handlebar mounted remote
  • + 1
 I can't wait for the e-tainment suite...
  • + 1
 and with realtime Strava
  • + 3
 Going to run out of outlets in the house with all the stuff you'll have to charge up before a ride~
  • + 1
 @Peanutbutthurt-and-Jelly New product idea: wheel/bike stand with integrated power strip that has 6 plugs and USB ports for charging. Future shit.
  • + 1
 @thepwnstar39 with all the cords, the bike would like like it's on life support lol
  • + 2
 Oakley Radar with photochromic lenses. They do the same thing, gradually, without buttons or batteries and cost €100 less. Why the f*** would anyone buy this...
  • + 1
 @Extremmist Have you tried reading the article? "The change from 64% to 16% visible light transmission takes only one-tenth of a second, a feature that anyone who's ever been momentarily blinded after emerging into the bright sunlight from a dark forest, or vice versa, can appreciate. That number is also considerably quicker than photochromic lenses, which typically take over twenty seconds to adjust to changing light conditions."
  • + 1
 @Pedro404, but you have to push a button on the glasses to make it work (I'd think that would probably make one crash more often)
  • + 1
 @jlhenterprises - As the article says, there's a hands-free, automatic mode as well that senses the amount of ambient light.
  • + 1
 @jlhenterprises Jesus, right after I told the other guy to read the article. Are you for real or just trolling? This is literally the next sentence after the quote in my previous post: "The Variotronic also has an automatic mode, where a built in sensor changes the tint depending on the amount of ambient light."
  • + 3
 @pedro404, nope, just have the attention span of a gnat when reading about electronics stuff for bikes, lol
If the automatic mode really works I'd like to see that, but probably would never buy them knowing how I go thru glasses.
I'm getting better, only about one pair per month lately, haha
  • + 45
 Fake carbon? What is this, 2002?
  • + 5
 Aw man I had to look twice, that really is the old, really fake looking carbon print, too, straight out of the late 90s.
  • + 4
 P.R.O.T.O.T.Y.P.E.
  • + 1
 not only that - woven carbon itself is oldnews; ud ftw.
  • + 32
 use in for car windows. tint on for baller mode and tint off when 5-0 is around...no'mo' tickets !!!
  • + 24
 My mum's pupils don't react to light so she has to wear dark glasses basically all the time. Reactions lenses have been great but they often leave her half blind when she comes in from outside, these would be awesome. I really hope they do prescription versions...and maybe something that looks a little less sport oriented.
  • + 7
 The tech behind comes from AlphaMicron. Not sure if they're aware of that use you described and have everyday glasses out yet but perhaps they will in the future.
  • + 16
 the helmet actually looks great
  • + 1
 When it's a halfshell that is...
  • - 1
 Looks like it will explode upon impact in the "DH" mode. Hell no thank you.
  • + 2
 As long as it protects at time of impact who cares if it breaks. I'm not sure I would get this one. But I am looking for a light full face option for enduro racing on tracks that a full face would be either essential or a good idea while still trying to keep weight down and ventilation high.
  • + 13
 I have no more USB ports!!!!!
  • + 6
 That helmet is seriously lacking in the technology department and clearly doesn't belong in this article: where's the electronically controlled variable speed cooling fan? I'm disappointed, Germany...
  • + 7
 I feel like I'm waiting fro Tesla to combine all these things into one integrated bike so I can just plug the whole damn thing in each night.
  • + 5
 please please please tell me that the glasses allow for prescription. im really excited for those, its a pain in the ass to take polarized glasses on a sunny day that are rendered useless once you get inside a forest.
  • + 5
 I think Bell's Super 2R is a fantastic helmet, and the metal catches are really strong. However the 2 dials on this helmet look a bit cheap and simple, with the holes they leave behind looking a bit rough!
  • + 1
 It bothers me that the super 2r isn't downhill certified though. That being said I'm not if this is either.
  • + 1
 I am pretty sure that the Super 2r exceeds all DH specs, except one. The only reason it's not certified, that I know of, is the venting doesn't pass the stick through test. I just found that I would rather have this on then no face protection, which is what I was using with my previous half shell.
  • + 1
 It only passes CPSC though not ASTM. I'll admit to not knowing much about what either of those certifications means but I do know that for downhill ASTM certification is highly recommended and is present in most high end helmets.
  • + 6
 Welding helmets have been using this type of auto darkening system for years, and it works great.
  • + 9
 And you can get 1 for 80 bucks with some sweet flames or skulls and shit.
  • + 1
 Sweet just like mine, maybe I should just wear that and use the force to see where I'm going...lol
  • + 3
 I've had an idea .buy the specialised carbon enduro with the glove box under the bottle cage ,fit a bigish battery then run your shimano electric gears your electronic suspension and wifi dropper post and have a usb port to charge your glasses . Sorted
  • + 1
 forgot the eletronic roll off googles
  • + 7
 That helmet is completely useless without cheek pads.
  • + 5
 completely agree. Wouldn't you just get a face full of chin bar when the helmet rotates? OR would you have to have the boa retention so tight you'd get migraines.

This is all just speculation on my part. I got my engineering degree from Armchair University.
  • + 1
 Agree...some removable, various sized cheek pads would be cheap and helpful.
  • + 6
 i went to armchair too, what year did you graduate?
  • + 1
 You never graduate from armchair. You just become progressively more experienced. I for example am on my 5th Engineering PhD project designing enduro and freeride compatible sunblock. We're thinking of making it fluoro coloured and calling it "zinc" in homage to both suggested disciplines.







Btw it already exists in the surfing world. www.thesurfingblog.com/zinka-a-colorful-zinc-oxide-sunscreen
  • + 2
 ASTM F1952/ CPSC. One thing gets my back up is a helmets that are sold as full face but dont meet even this basic standard..
We know they dont offer the same protection as one piece full face lid but in my opinion they should not be sold if they cant at least pass this cert..
  • + 1
 CPSC doesn't actually test the chin bar, so whether the helmet is a full face or not is irrelevant.
  • + 2
 F1952 does though, so disregard my comment, I guess.
  • + 1
 If MET release a Parachute with removable chin bar like I read on here, all these other helmets are pointless without ASTM 1952
  • + 4
 I have the parachute, theres no need to remove the chin for the climbs, theres plenty of vents to keep cool enough. Kind of makes these removable chins pointless...
  • + 1
 Remember the Giro "switch" helmet....recalled due to severe lacetations to face and neck when the failed..,,which was frequent..this UVEX helmet seems a bit weak and likely to fail...UVEX should not take on such liability..,the Bell helmet seems solid and fully tested though
  • + 1
 the sunglasses are a clever idea, and glasses of that sort could solve problems for more than just bikers.. would like it if it said if its possible to change the battery.. I hate battery operated devices, especially when you cant change the battery, don't want to be chucking them after a year or so when the battery inevitably only lasts 30 mins per charge. And the helmet is tolerable, I prefer it as full face but its still not really for me. good to see them coming though, soon they'll be cheaper and better looking.
  • + 1
 Next we are going to see Electronic Suppositories to power all this nonsense.
Just shove this up yer arse, and you can simultaneously power your sunglasses, heart rate monitor, bowel monitor, power monitor, suspension fork, rear shock, seatpost, rear derailleur, and belly scratcher!!! A single charge will last 5 hours with full integration, after which you will need to sit on the charging station for a quick 30 minutes to recharge!
*Moisture and vibration resistant. **Crashing will void 30 day warranty. ***Accidentally flushing down the toilet is not covered under 30 day warranty.
  • + 5
 Will there be software updates available for these?
  • + 1
 So now before a ride, in addition to charging your fork, shock, dropper post, cycling computer, GPS and cell phone and ebike batteries you now need to charge your sun glasses? I can't wait to see who comes out with the first electronic hydration pack.
  • + 2
 To late.
  • + 1
 The lenses look like they also retain some tint when clear and then they're not very dark at their darkest. Neat idea. Photochromic lenses don't change fast enough when the trail cuts in and out of forest. My rose coloured lenses seem to work the best for variable light conditions, until dusk hits.
  • + 5
 cant come riding today my glasses need a firmware update
  • + 2
 That helmet looks ridiculous. If you're going to try and compete with an established product you should try and improve on it. They made it clunkier... I guess they're gonna go with the ours is cheaper path.
  • + 4
 Electronic sunglasses. I don't want to live on this planet anymore.
  • + 3
 Im blind! Nope the batteries just died on my sun glasses.
  • + 1
 Those glasses are awesome. Really aren't that much more $ than ridiculously overpriced Oakleys. Plus they remind me of that hot evil chick off of the first GI Joe movie!
  • + 3
 I need more electronics for better life quality!
  • + 1
 Uvex : Is there any compability with CTD, DI2, Bosch, magura & and electronic paper toilet (see the meaning of "faire chier" in french)...
  • + 3
 The half shell bit looks pretty good...the chin guard not so much.
  • + 0
 This is no way an insult, in fact it may be a compliment,

but of course the Germans would be the ones to develop something as insanely complex as this. (See also doppelkupplungsgetriebe)
  • + 1
 I'm throwing money at my screen but nothing is happening!!!! Also nice name for the helmet LOL.
  • + 2
 I just want glasses that don't fog up!
  • + 1
 Sweet, another dangerous helmet designed to inspire confidence it shouldn't!
  • + 2
 Stevie wonder get your order placed lol
  • + 1
 Blah blah blah It's a beautiful day outside
  • - 2
 Glasses look like a great idea but.... are you really going to want to take your hand off the bar to flick the switch to change the tint?

Nearly there Uvex - good job will be interested to see the second generation.
  • + 9
 There's a hands-free, automatic mode as well.
  • + 3
 I foresee a future PB post featuring all of the electronic gadgets one could possibly have now: suspension, shifting, wireless dropper, GPS, the UVEX glasses, etc all with a solar panel on a hydration pack that generates a wifi signal.
  • + 1
 pretty soon it'll take more power to run components than a current ebike
  • + 2
 April Fools 2016...
  • + 1
 That's an interesting e-ink application
  • + 1
 Does it have wifi adapter?
  • + 1
 Glasses look sweet but at nearly $500, f*ck that
  • + 1
 Will stay with my Oakleys 4evah...

Post a Comment



Copyright © 2000 - 2019. Pinkbike.com. All rights reserved.
dv65 0.049878
Mobile Version of Website