Do Gunnar PC glasses really protect your eyesight? Here's a four-year eyes-on review

I ordered a pair of Gunnar optics back in 2013 in hope that shielding my eyes somewhat would help alleviate the problem of dry and tired eyes and blurred vision from heavy computer use. While they were a pricey investment on a hunch and some light research, I'm still using them to this day and swear by them to protect my eyes against the strain.

Using the PC for more than 10 hours each and every day (alongside a smartphone, tablet, console and TV) will certainly take its toll on anyone's vision, but when you need to hop in the car and remain safe behind the wheel I found it important to try something new in reducing the issues that come with prolonged stares at a screen.

Though I have been using the Gunnar glasses, I've also been ensuring that I take 5-minute breaks every 30 minutes to look at something that isn't a few feet away. This is something I'd recommend everyone do, as the different focal points help eyesight to be

Yellow Vision

Gunnar lasses

Known as Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS), this group of eye and health-related issues are caused by exposure to electronic screens. Here's a list of some symptoms you're likely to experience:

  • Headaches
  • Blurred Vision
  • Neck Strain
  • Redness in the Eyes
  • Fatigue
  • Eye Strain
  • Dry Eyes
  • Irritated Eyes
  • Double Vision
  • Vertigo/Dizziness
  • Polyopia

Gunnar is the post popular brand when it comes to protective eyewear and the company provides detailed information on its website as to how it all works. The lenses actually wrap around both eyes to help limit the amount of dry air affecting your visual senses.

Utilizing custom tint in the lens helps protect the eye from artificial High-Energy Visible (HEV) light. When first using the glasses, I couldn't help but notice the yellow tint that had taken over my vision but grew accustomed to the screen appearing slightly different.

As an added bonus, an anti-reflective coating is present on both the front and the rear of the lens. This is great for reducing glare, allowing my eyes to focus better on productivity.

Thin & Light

Gunnar Glasses

Here are the specifications for Gunnar glasses:

  • Lenses have a high ABBE value of 51 to minimize visual distortion
  • Lenses medium index of refraction (1.51)
  • Amber lenses filter 65% of harmful blue light at 450nm
  • Amber lenses let in good blue light from 465nm to 500nm to promote cognitive and memory function
  • AR coatings reduce glare and reflections
  • Filter 100% of UVA and UVB light
  • Crystalline lens has an 88% blue light transmission
  • Amber lens has a 35% blue light transmission
  • Grey sunglass lens has a 15% light transmission

The pair I ordered were the Gunnar Optiks PPK-00101 from a retailer and was an easy choice due to the lightweight design and styling. I also don't yet require a prescription which made the hunting of an ideal pair that much easier. A month in and I was already sold, Gunnar really has transformed technology for me.

I may be in the group of fans who swear by Gunnars, but it's worth noting that not everyone will see a difference. I passed my pair to a few friends, some who wear prescription glasses, and only a few (mainly those who suffer from CVS symptoms) noticed a difference when wearing the eyewear.

I'd recommend checking where you can try a pair and give them a go to see if they'll be worth the investment. Should you be running out of ideas and need something to help with staring at a screen all day, I would vouch for Gunnar and similar solutions.

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Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds was formerly a Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.