Field Tested: Revo Ground Speed

I have always been a fan of Revo sunglasses, an affection reaffirmed when I set out to test a handful of shades in a Best of Breed feature for Overland Journal’s 2013 Gear Guide. The result of that test culminated in the Revo Bearing receiving our Editor’s Choice award. In just a few weeks, I’ll have another sunglass piece in the Journal, this time a retrospective look at the legacy of aviator sunglasses. A classic at the time of inception, the aviator has remained a constant for over 75 years. So stalwart is that particular wire-framed style within automotive pursuits, it has arguably been renamed––the driver.

The Revo Ground Speed is a perfect example of a contemporary sunglass inspired by those worn by pilots so long ago. It has the unmistakable style of a late 1950s aviator with slightly squared wire frames that allow for an unobstructed field of view, are light, and easily adjusted for optimal fit. It is Revo’s Terra lenses however, that make it purposefully engineered for earth-bound endeavors, particularly those involving a steering wheel. Whereas the original aviators were designed to combat the harsh whites and blues of high altitude, the Revo Terra lenses are designed to deliver optimal clarity and contrast in settings where the light is often dappled and inconsistent. Think driving down a forest road at mid-day.


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Like the original aviators with their G-15 lenses, the Terra lenses also block out 85% of light allowing for 15% pass through. This is not to say they allow for even the smallest amount of dangerous UVA, UVB, or even UVC rays to harm your eyes. The light brown tent permits the transmission of green, yellow, orange, and red spectrum rays creating a more natural representation of color, and Revo’s polarization cuts glare for reduced eye fatigue.


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In use, the Ground Speeds have quickly become my go-to for daily wear, especially when on the road. The light tint is sufficient for harsh light, but doesn’t impede my ability to read dash instruments. While Revo does make a lens specific to use on the road, aptly named the Open Road lens, I find I’m not always in the driver seat, so the Terra lens has been a superb alternative.

As I have come to expect of Revo, the quality of the materials and construction are top-tier. The lenses are crystal clear, resist scratching, and are surprisingly light. As a photographer, I appreciate the accuracy of color representation and find the polarization doesn’t obstruct my viewing of LCD screens as badly as most polarized lenses. With a two year warranty and Revo’s unique 50% off upgrade program for future purchases, I find I have a hard time wearing anything else.


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Christophe Noel is a journalist from Prescott, Arizona. Born into a family of backcountry enthusiasts, Christophe grew up backpacking the mountains and deserts of the American West. An avid cyclist and bikepacker, he also has a passion for motorcycles, travel, food and overlanding.