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Eyeglasses and photography
Paul W Gillespie, Photographer
Annapolis | MD | USA | Posted: 4:13 PM on 08.19.13
->> I am getting my first pair of eye glasses in over 30 years. Went for my first exam in 10 years today, due to changes in my eye sight, as I hit my 40's. After the exam I now know I am both near and far sighted.

After trying on many frames and finding ones I liked, we moved onto the lenses. She showed me the options and I went with the premium progressive lenses. They seemed to have a wider field of view than the less expensive ones. I also went with the polycarb over the cheaper plastic, actual glass was never mentioned. The another option I went for was the HD Zeiss lenses.

The one option that I am not sure if I made a mistake or not was the transitions type lenses. I like the fact that I won't need sunglasses, but am not sure if how it will affect my shooting. I sometimes wear sunglasses when working and they don't bother me too much. If I need to occasionally lift them to critically check something, I do.

Anyone shooting with Transitions? Do the HD lenses help, seemed like the non HD ones had in the eye doc's example distorted lines.

Like I said, these are my first glasses in 30 years and I never had to buy them myself. The total, with my insurance was $450 and after I got home I started feeling like I was really upsold, but some friends who wear glasses said good ones can cost. About $100 of the total was the frames.
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Pat Lovell, Photographer
Bloomington | IN | US | Posted: 6:33 PM on 08.19.13
->> I used transitions/HD several years back and quit wearing them because you can't read the meter in the camera. I was getting ready to send my camera body into CPS, thinking the meter LED's were bad. Luckily, I took off the glasses and sure enough, I could see the meter.

Also, didn't like transitions because they took too long to go from sunglasses back to normal glass when running back to the media room after being outside.

Hopefully, they have changed and the transition is faster.
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Mark Loundy, Photo Editor, Photographer
San Jose | CA | USA | Posted: 6:34 PM on 08.19.13
->> If I'm shooting, yes to everything except the transitions lenses.

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Chris Machian, Photographer, Assistant
Omaha | NE | USA | Posted: 6:59 PM on 08.19.13
->> LASIK worked for me.
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Sam Morris, Photographer
Henderson (Las Vegas) | NV | USA | Posted: 7:47 PM on 08.19.13
->> I had transitions once, and besides the minor dorky aesthetic, my biggest problem was the color shift.
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Jack Kelley, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 8:05 PM on 08.19.13
->> After trying to shoot wearing eyeglasses (non-transition progressives), I now always take them off to shoot and rely on the diopter instead. Shooting with them on scuffed the lens.

I'm happier being able to bury my eye socket into the viewfinder to shut out as much light as possible. Not seeing quite as well when I pull my face out of the camera seems a small price to pay. It's easy enough to put 'em back on.

Otherwise I do love the polycarb progressives.

I've seen lots of very good photographers (Joe McNally, for example) shoot wearing eyeglasses, but it didn't work for me. I hope you have better luck.
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Paul W Gillespie, Photographer
Annapolis | MD | USA | Posted: 8:14 PM on 08.19.13
->> I kind of have a feeling I will not be wearing them to shoot pics. I seem to do fine with the diopter set now. These are more for seeing close and far away things. I will not know until I get them. It may be too late to cancel the Transitions and I am not sure I want to yet. I do like the look of real sunglasses though.
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Jan Langsner, Photographer
Edmonton | AB | Canada | Posted: 8:59 PM on 08.19.13
->> The problem with transition lenses is, it's the UV rays that make them change. Well, windshields filter out the UV rays. So when you are driving, you have no sunglasses.
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Mark Peters, Photographer
Highland | IL | USA | Posted: 9:23 PM on 08.19.13
->> I'm with Jack. I rely on the diopter. I'm about 20/35 without my glasses, but I can't read jack without cheaters of some kind, so I always have a pair pushed back on my head just to read the menus on the camera.

I'm intrigued about the "premium progessive" lenses you mentioned. I have no line bifocals and find the "sweet spot" to be way too small. They weren't cheap.
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Steven Limentani, Photographer
Charlotte | NC | United States | Posted: 10:06 PM on 08.19.13
->> LASIK sounds great and it is for distance but it will increase your need for reading glasses.
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Mike Jones, Photographer
Magnolia | AR | USA | Posted: 11:16 PM on 08.19.13
->> I am with Mark and Jack, can't do the glasses thing but can't see without something either! Cheaters are a problem also, so I went the contact route and it works great for me!
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer, Photo Editor
PLANET | EARTH | | Posted: 8:10 AM on 08.20.13
->> Paul, I paid a lot of money for my glasses....bought the "special" non-scratch treatment which was suggested by salesperson who knew I am a photographer. So now after a year I can barely see through the left lense because it scarred so badly....I'm thinking when I get the new pair I will start shooting with the diopter adjusted. I think the non-scratch coating may be a gimmick that added about $100 to the price of the glasses.....I guess I'll carry a pair of cheaters around my neck to check settings and chimp. I know several other shooters in the area who have gone that route. Good luck!
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John Berry, Photographer
Madison | VA | USA | Posted: 8:43 AM on 08.20.13
->> I too went with progressives. My distance vision is fine, I just can't see close up, so had no idea if the photos were sharp on the LCD unless I put on readers. I've been very happy with the progressives. I didn't go for the transitions.

I did get the anti scratch coating. Mine came with a free replacement if the lenses get scratched. Mine too had become pretty scruffed up after a year of use. I just had the lenses replaced under the "anti scratch warranty". Only had to pay a $15 fee, so the whole anti scratch deal was definitely worth it for me.
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Douglas Cottle, Photographer
Tuscola | Illinois | United States | Posted: 9:53 AM on 08.20.13
->> In my experiences, anti scratch/anti glare coatings are a sham. Tried them in the past and once they get compromised with scratches you are worse off. I remember driving at night and oncoming cars headlights damn near blinded me as they passed due to the scratching. I'm a year and a half into my new pair of glasses with no special coatings and not one scratch on either lens. Go figure.

I also switched to plastic frames over metal as the metal frames get out of whack easier with a camera up to your face. Especially the wire nose pads. I'm really happy with my Ray-Ban 5113 eyeglasses. That frame is currently going for around $100. They are durable, nose pad is a solid one-piece, can move my head quickly back and forth and they don't move, and adjustment is easy with 4 screws to snug down if they get a bit loose. Great glasses.
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Richard Uhlhorn, Photographer
Chelan Falls | WA | USA | Posted: 10:33 AM on 08.20.13
->> I've worn glasses ever since I took up photography years ago. I have always preferred glass to the other options. They clean easily and don't scratch.
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Ron Manfredi, Photographer
Merrick (Long Island) | NY | | Posted: 10:38 AM on 08.20.13
->> I agree with Richard about glass, but it is getting more and more difficult to find opticians offering glass lenses!
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Neil Turner, Photographer
Bournemouth | UK | United Kingdom | Posted: 12:18 PM on 08.20.13
->> I cannot get used to shooting with glasses on and so I use the dioptric correction on the cameras but I cannot easily see the LCD screen up close without them any more. The end result has been less frequent chimping and new frames that stay put when I put them on top of my head.

I also went for glass lenses (my correction is a simple one) which only cost a fraction more but seem to require cleaning a lot less often. I have a different pair for working on screen. Luckily I don't need to wear them for anything other than close up stuff and so driving is still fine and the dash is just far enough away that I can see it.
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Michael L. Stein, Photographer
Smithtown | NY | USA | Posted: 1:09 PM on 08.20.13
->> I am really struggling with glasses and getting the correct combination of what to wear right.
John and Neil, as far as reviewing images in the LCD, I use a HOODMAN loupe. This works great in extremely bright light, such as at a baseball game. I can view the images, tack sharp.

My struggle with glasses is an ongoing battle right now. Quite frustrating.
I max out the diopter for photos and video.
Using a TV camera, HH I max out the diopter, but if the camera is older, sometimes that's NG. When I wear glasses they push all the way into my face. I can't see the back of the camera to key in or make adjustments.

In addition, riding my bicycle I am unable to see the Garmin GPS mounted on the handlebars. My doctor suggested trying OTC glasses around 1.0 to be able to see the GPS when looking down. He feels that it will be good for looking straight ahead for the ride too, as that is subtle. however, 1.0 isn't good. 1.25 is a bit better, but still a bit soft. Next I am trying 1.5, but that may be too,much. Once I find the right ones, they will be put into prescription sunglasses for cycling.
Any suggestions are greatly appreciated as this is an issue for me with TV cameras, shooting sports, news and cycling.
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Philip Johnson, Photographer
Garland | TX | USA | Posted: 1:46 PM on 08.20.13
->> Michael, if I understand you correctly that you wear glasses to see far away and now are having a problem seeing up close and if you can do contacts you might ask your eye doctor about doing mono vision. This is where one eye is for distance and one is for things close up. I've been doing this for about 6 years and it works well for me. I have my dominate eye that looks through the camera set up for distance and the other eye for close up. I just use the diopter in the camera to adjust so I can read everything in the viewfinder and still see long distance.
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Ian L. Sitren, Photographer
Palm Springs | CA | USA | Posted: 10:13 PM on 08.20.13
->> I have been wearing transition lenses for years. I have them in sunglasses and regular glasses. They are high end lightweight whatever they are, not glass.

For slow critical shooting I take them off but I am so used to shooting with them it is no problem, just annoying sometimes.

Do not get polarized of course. You will end up not seeing a lot of the LCD or viewfinder data on many cameras. And I do think the current super expensive anti-glare lenses (which I have) are not worth the money at all.
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Larry Aronat, Photographer
Bakersfield | CA | USA | Posted: 10:51 PM on 08.20.13
->> I just picked up a pair of Oakley Crosslink Switch frames with digital progressive & Transition lenses with all the coatings,etc. I choose them because with a flip of a switch, I can swap out the lenses quite easily. I like them especially for the Unobtainium earsocks. They are real grippy and easy to clean and replace! The solid aluminum frame has an integrated nose bridge with Unobtainium so no flimsy eye pads to worry about and constantly clean. I bought them for cycling as well.
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Andy Mitchell, Photographer, Assistant
Chattanooga | TN | USA | Posted: 12:40 AM on 08.21.13
->> I use transition lenses with a yellow tint to them, I have never taken them off to shoot. I use Oakley Minutes sunglasses as my frame, I do not have any of the scratch, glare coatings on mine.

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Greg Kendall-Ball, Photographer, Assistant
Columbia | MO | USA | Posted: 10:23 AM on 08.21.13
->> @Chuck- I had a pair of glasses where the anti-scratch coating started flaking off after a few months. I thought it was just from rubbing against the eye-piece of my camera, but when I took them in for an adjustment on the frames, the woman behind the counter said that wasn't normal. It looked like a defect with the coating. My lenses were still under warranty, and they replaced them with a new set, and the coating was reapplied. I've used those lenses for a year now, and have no scratches (at least not from my cameras).

You might check with your office and see if they're still covered by some sort of warranty.
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Randy Vanderveen, Photographer
Grande Prairie | AB | Canada | Posted: 1:20 PM on 08.21.13
->> I have had glasses since I was a child and have always shot with glasses. One thing I would recommend to anyone that uses items against their glasses on a regular basis ie cameras, telescopes, microscopes etc. is to get glass lenses. They cost more, are heavier and there is always the danger of breakage but they hold up better. I tried scratch resistant lenses and within six months I had to purchase a new set of lenses. Most opticians will not cover them as warranty as it is external damage.
As far as transition-type lenses I find either clip on sunglasses made for the frames by the same manufacturer or a second set of prescription sunglasses work better. But to be honest I don't tend to wear sunglasses much.
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Andrew Brosig, Photo Editor, Photographer
Nacogdoches | TX | United States | Posted: 8:48 AM on 08.23.13
->> polycarb lenses are a mandatory minimum, at least, for shooters. My latest exam, the tech suggested something (can't remember the product name) which is supposedly even tougher than polycarb, but my last two pairs were poly and never had a scratching problem. The "scratch proof" treatments on regular plastic lenses proved worthless to me. I've also been shooting with transitions/photogray/what-ever-you-want-to-call-it lenses for years and never had a problem. So maybe I'm the exception to the rule. For me, it was like anything else, maybe short learning curve but, once I got used to shooting with them, not a problem. This time around I opted for a second pair of "reading" glasses as opposed to bifocals, though, remembering all the problems my father had shooting with bifocals. He had the old style, little lens in the middle bifocals, so I don't know about the no-lines. But, for the money, the reading glasses w/ my script weren't that much compared to convenience. Now, if I can only deal with my other shooter, laughing every time I go looking for my other glasses when she wants to show me an image on her computer.
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Michael L. Stein, Photographer
Smithtown | NY | USA | Posted: 9:57 AM on 08.24.13
->> Philip
Thanks for your insight. My situation is still evolving. Actually, my glasses are for reading. Using OTC 2.75. My doctor has approved. It's frustrating as if I use these to read on a computer I'm too close and my eyes hurt quickly.
When watching TV, which is rare, I squint as the images are fuzzy and a bit unclear. I find if I use OTC 1.0 it helps everything appear crisp.
Then the issue of cycling is I cannot see the Garmin GPS mounted on my handlebars clearly. I have experimented with 1.0 and 1.25 OTC. The 1.25 gets me closer to seeing in focus, but not tack sharp. when wearing these I can look straight ahead and things look in focus. So, my plan has been to find the right glasses that work on the bike and then have prescription lenses put into cycling sunglasses. I'm not certain that my doctor is ok with 1.5 for this purpose. I have to check back with him.
Would I be better off with transitions that many have mentioned here on SS?
Other people have mentioned mono vision to me too. While that sounds good, I am not comfortable with contacts. (Not yet anyway).
Also, I'm not currently wearing glasses for distance. I do mistake road sign exit numbers often these days though. I think the doctor's idea is not to make my eyes lazier and more dependent on the progression of needing glasses. IT is inevitable,but easing into this gradually will probably slow down the process of how quickly I will need to continuously increase the magnification.The whole idea of needing glasses is humbling, but without them I wouldn't be able to read documents, books or SS. In that light, glasses are a blessing as is the privilege of growing old, healthfully. So, I am not complaining, just frustrated until this plays out.Thanks to everyone for your experience and suggestions. with a little tweaking I will eventually get this right.
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Steve Ueckert, Photographer
Houston | TX | | Posted: 11:36 AM on 08.24.13
->> @ Michael Stein--

You might check some of the catalogs for bench rest (target) shooters. In the past I remember seeing stick-on plastic lenses you apply to standard shooters' safety glasses in various close-up magnifications. Shooters need them to clearly see the sight adjustments on rifles anywhere from several inches to a foot or so away. These are sheet plastic that go on wet, as the water dries they adhere to the safety lenses.

They are available in various magnifications in standard diopter progression. It might work for you. You might even try correcting one eye for your GPS and the other for an alternate distance such as your computer.
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Steve Ueckert, Photographer
Houston | TX | | Posted: 1:50 PM on 08.24.13
->> @ Michael again--

Google is your friend:

"stick on diopter lenses"

The link to amazon looks like what I have used.
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Thomas Oed, Photographer
San Diego | CA | USA | Posted: 4:30 AM on 08.27.13
->> After never having tried Transitions lenses in the past, I got my first set a couple of weeks ago. I was hoping to not have to put sunglasses on while driving, but Jan appears to be correct. Mine change very little while I'm in the car.

Otherwise, they seem pretty nice. I always get talked in to the scratch coatings and what-not whenever I get new glasses, and have not had too many problems, as far back as I can remember. I think I paid about the same as you, Paul, with the exception that I really like the frames I got last year, and they're still in good shape, so I just got lenses this time around,

I would do the contacts thing while shooting, but since I turned 40 I can no longer see close-up without my glasses, so as annoying as I always found it, I've pretty much shot with glasses almost exclusively since then.

I haven't done any shooting yet since I got the new lenses, but my Transitions are a grey tint, so I do not expect any color shift... neutral density filter anyone??! lol

Pat, the Transitions technology has improved a LOT over the years... mine seem to only take a couple of minutes to lighten up. A tad slower than they darken, but not much.
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Michael L. Stein, Photographer
Smithtown | NY | USA | Posted: 8:26 AM on 08.28.13
->> Steve Ueckert
interesting suggestion with the stick on diopter lenses. Apparently, you and google may be my friend. I am looking into this option. with your experience using these lenses, I would adhere the stick-ons to existing glasses already.... I guess it is trial and error. I should purchase a few different magnifications putting them on top of a lower magnification eyeglass? do you think this might work, 1.0 for left eye for seeing straight ahead on my bicycle and 1.5 for right eye to see the garmin, mounted on the handlebars? Im just asking, while I see the potential here, not certain I get the whole picture on how to implement this effectively. Thanks for the suggestion.
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Thread Title: Eyeglasses and photography
Thread Started By: Paul W Gillespie
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