High Definition Lenses
What Are High Definition Lenses? Are They Worth the Cost?
Recently, you may have heard a few unfamiliar terms during your search for a new pair of glasses: terms like “HD eyeglasses,” “digital lenses,” “high def eyewear,” even the seemingly unrelated “free-form lenses”.
These all refer to the same concept: high definition lenses. Many eyeglass wearers looking to update their prescriptions or take advantage of the latest tech with their existing prescription are finding the list of optional features looking much better than before. Few of these options get more questions than high definition lenses. To help clear things up, with an eye towards dispelling marketing hype, here is a breakdown of what high definition lenses are and which types of eyeglass wearers might most benefit from this new approach to lens customization:
HD Glasses: Technological Marvel or a New Way to Nickel & Dime?
For someone with a great pair of prescription lenses already helping them see the world clearly, this might understandably come off as a vacuous marketing term.
Sometimes, the way these lenses are described only serves to bolster this impression – however true it may be. Common examples are:
- Digital lenses help you see more clearly than ever before
- High def lenses provide the same leap in clarity as going from standard definition to HDTV
- Why stop at 20/20 vision if your glasses can be even better?
And there exist many more similar phrases more oriented towards selling than truly describing. For modern consumers, often much more savvy than in the past, these types of comments come off as sales copy. But even if a customer does the research, even direct feedback from knowledgeable sources is somewhat inconclusive. Generally, the response is that people notice an improvement in various settings, just not what they were hoping for. Yet, each one of these statements is essentially truthful. High definition lenses are, for most patients, a notable improvement. As the following sections will explore, this depends on a number of factors. And while going from SDTV to HDTV resolutions is something of an overstatement for the many eyeglass wearers who upgrade to HD lenses — going from 480p to 1080p TV resolutions was a pretty big leap — that’s more of an exaggeration than outright misdirection.
How HD Lenses Solve Higher-Order Eyesight Aberrations
The most familiar eyesight aberrations are terms like astigmatism, farsightedness, and nearsightedness. However, many patients have what’s known as higher-order eyesight aberrations. This is an incredibly broad reference category, that includes such varied aspects of the eye like the shape of the cornea or the presence of minor cataracts. It even includes patients that suffer from intermittent eye dryness, directly affecting the ability to see properly.
An exam that accounts for HD lenses can address these extremely minor peculiarities, giving a patient who already benefits from eyeglasses a further boost in their day-to-day sight.
Improvements in Anti-Reflective Coating
There are worries many eyeglasses patients associate with anti-reflective coating. Many experienced issues like increased smudging, difficulty cleaning, and fogging up frequently. With HD lenses quickly becoming the standard, anti-reflective coatings have improved in kind. Newer formulations of anti-reflective coatings look and feel like glasses without them, only becoming noticeable when in situations like driving at night where they heavily limit reflection.
For even those without HD lenses, the current form of anti-reflective coating is a must for heavy computer users and for improving general low-light visibility.