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Optical4less

reviewed by Matt on
http://www.optical4less.com

 

The following is a purchase review based on my own experience. This experience does not necessarily reflect the experience that others may have when buying glasses from the above retailer. Keep in mind that each purchase review/experience pertains to ONE order. If my experience went well, it is no guarantee that yours will go well. If mine went poorly, there’s no guarantee that yours will go poorly. Purchases may be placed under varying addresses under various names in an effort to keep orders “anonymous” so that orders do not receive “special treatment” above and beyond what a normal customer would receive. Finally, while every effort is made to keep each review unbiased, note that it is subject to my own opinion.

most recent purchase (mid 2006)

Order Placed – May 31, 2006

I placed an order for 2 pairs of glasses from Optical4less. The first was for progressive lenses ($63USD) in regular frames ($29USD). The second was for a single-vision pair of Transitions lenses ($59USD) in bendable frames ($59USD). Because 2 pairs were ordered, shipping was free. Shortly after ordering, I received a confirmation email which included a link to an order tracking page where the status of the order could be checked.

 

Order Shipped – June 8, 2006

The glasses had shipped. An email was sent to me, and the order tracking page was updated.

 

Order Received – June 15, 2006

The glasses arrived. Each included a free case and a micro fiber cloth. A free mini-screwdriver / keychain was included as well.
Pictures (click on any of the thumbnails to open a full size picture in a new window)

Optical4less review - June 2006 - glasses overview Optical4less review - June 2006 - glasses overview2 Optical4less review - June 2006 - glasses close-up (progressive lenses) Optical4less review - June 2006 - glasses close-up (progressive lenses) 2 Optical4less review - June 2006 - glasses close-up (transition lenses) Optical4less review - June 2006 - glasses close-up (transitions lenses) 2
#1 and #2 are of the package contents. The boxes were wrapped together with the shipping paper, and everything was taped together quite well. #3 and #4 are shots of the progressive lenses. #5 and #6 are of the transitions-lensed glasses in the bendable frames. Everything seemed to be in order.

 

Order Received – June 15, 2006 (continued)

Packing was good, basically identical to the packing in the first review.

Progressives: The frames had a good solid feel to them and a nice finish. They needed some adjusting, but were perfectly fine otherwise. From what I could tell, the lenses themselves seemed to be of high quality. Note that I myself do not wear progressives/bifocals, so these were ordered for another individual, but she did try them and seemed to be quite pleased with them. I examined them myself as best I could as well, and there wasn’t anything I could see that may have been amiss.

Single Vision Transitions: The bendable frames seemed good. They were both lightweight and flexible, and make these glasses one of the nicer pairs I own. They didn’t need any adjusting. The lenses themselves were great. Optically, they seem to be perfect. The transitions effect works properly. The lenses did have a couple marks on them (looked like scuff marks on the inside of the lens), but the marks rubbed off with the micro fiber cloth. All in all, another great pair of glasses.

Total time between ordering and delivery: 15 days
Time to ship: 8 days
Time in transit: 7 days

 

Would I buy from Optical4less again based on this purchase?

Yes.

 

Would I recommend Optical4less to others based on this purchase?

Yes. The rimless glasses from the first review have also held up through a bit of rugged use and abuse. Between all 3 glasses, I haven’t come across any problems, and most of the feedback I’ve heard from others has been positive as well. I am still concerned about the shipping note they send with the glasses about not being responsible for damage during shipping (see the first review for more info), and they can be more pricey than some of the other places, but other than that, everything else seems to be pretty top notch. From what I’ve heard from others, if you have a prescription that’s pretty complex, Optical4less is often a pretty safe bet.

Click here to visit the Optical4less website / Click here to go to the Optical4less information page

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previous purchase (early 2006)

Order Placed – Jan 18, 2006

I placed an order for glasses from Optical4less. Their regular frames are $29, stepping up to rimless brought the price to $39 + $8 shipping. This included basic lenses (Hi-Index 1.56 AS® Hi-Max ® Aspheric Lens) and came with free AR. Note that shipping would have been free had I ordered 2 pairs or more.

 

Order Shipped – Jan 24, 2006

I received an email stating that my glasses had shipped. It also included tracking information. Hongkong Post provides tracking info up until it leaves the country. Once the package left Hong Kong (on the 26th), further tracking was not available on the Hongkong Post website.

 

Order Received – Feb 8, 2006

My package arrived in the mail. Included with the glasses were a free case, 2 micro fiber cloths, and a little slip/note with a couple basic care and cleaning instructions, and also stated that “O4L are NOT responsible for any contrived damages or damages which caused during the shipping process.” It would appear that if your package has a little mishap during transit, your only recourse might be to take it up with the post office (although I would still recommend contacting Optical4less first).
Pictures (click on any of the thumbnails to open the image full-size in a new window)

Optical4less review - Feb 2006 - packaging Optical4less review - Feb 2006 - packaging 2 Optical4less review - Feb 2006 - glasses in case Optical4less review - Feb 2006 - glasses overview Optical4less review - Feb 2006 - glasses overview 2 Optical4less review - Feb 2006 - rimless glasses close-up
#1 and #2 are the packaging, basically it’s a white box covered with shipping paper. Inside the white box was the glasses case. #3 is the way the glasses case looked when first opened, pretty standard stuff. The micro fiber cloths were wrapped around the lenses to help keep them protected during transport. The case itself is semi-transparent plastic. #4 and #5 are a couple shots of everything laid out. Notice in #5 the white foam padding in the bottom of the case – if you were to transfer the glasses in this case, you would probably want the lenses facing down (against the foam) rather than directly against the plastic to help keep them from scratching. Finally #6 is pretty self explanatory, just a shot of the glasses.

 

Order Received – Feb 8, 2006 (continued)

Packing was sufficient, basically the case fit snug in the box. A snug fit means that the case won’t slide around, but also means that any impact to the box is going to be transferred directly to the case. The clamshell case itself is entirely plastic, and both looks and feels cheap, so a sharp impact during shipping might crack or break it. An upgraded case would help ensure that can’t happen.

That aside, the glasses themselves are good. The frame seems to be sturdy, and the lenses are screwed in tightly enough that there’s no play when shifting the frame. The lenses themselves are pretty much perfect and I couldn’t find one fault or flaw with them. Excellent workmanship from what I can tell. The AR coating reflects bright light as a greenish color. The coatings are also water repellant. This makes it nice for cleaning, as you can clean the lenses under soapy water, and then run the lenses under the tap for the final rinse, leaving them drop and spot-free. Incidentally, this is the method I recommend for cleaning lenses, as by using only water, you’re helping to keep your lenses scratch-free. Lingering drops can usually be dabbed (never rubbed) off the bottom of the lens with a tissue. Just make sure you use a mild soap (some dish soaps are mild enough), and never use hot water. Harsh detergents will eat away at the coatings, and hot water has been known to ‘crack’ coatings in some cases.

Total time between ordering and delivery: 21 days
Time to ship: 6 days
Time in transit: 15 days

 

Would I buy from Optical4less again based on this purchase?

Yes. While a little more expensive than some of the other retailers, the glasses I received were great, and will definitely become one of my primary pairs. I shudder to think of what rimless frames/lenses with an AR coating would have cost me locally. Yet for under $50, I got exactly that. Quality-wise, they’re at least as good, if not better than what I would have expected here locally for 3-4 times the price.

 

Would I recommend Optical4less to others based on this purchase?

Probably. After a couple months of usage, assuming all goes well, I’ll likely upgrade this to a yes. My experience thus far has been really good, and quality seems to be superb. Of course, others experiences may vary, but I think the majority of people who purchase from Optical4less will end up completely satisfied.

 

Click here to visit the Optical4less website / Click here to go to the Optical4less information page

 

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