- Medium/Large Fit
- Quick Release Lens System
- Spherical, Carbonic-X Lens with TLT Optics
- Patented Vaporator Lens Technology with Porex™ Filter
- 5X Anti-Fog Inner Lens
- Includes Two Performance Mirror Lenses
- Ultra-Wide, Silicone Backed Strap
- QuickFit Strap Adjustment System with Clip Buckle
- 3-Layer, DriWix Face Foam
- Helmet Compatible
- Includes Microfiber Goggle Bag with Replacement Lens Sleeve
Days Tested: ~35
Smith Optics has a new goggle out this season, and they are pretty excited about it (buckle up: this is an eXtreme!!! product description):
“The biggest, baddest weapon in Smith’s Interchangeable goggle arsenal. In the arms race for superior fog prevention and peripheral vision, the I/OX truly is the nuclear solution. Never before has a goggle provided this level of peripheral vision, interchangeability, fog-free performance and seamless helmet integration in one package. In the game of Global Thermonuclear War, the I/OX isn’t playing around.”
So if you’re planning to invade a small country, dismantle a bomb, or play the very serious-sounding game of “Global Thermonuclear War,” then apparently, this is your goggle. (I’m actually in a co-ed Global Thermonuclear War city league—we play every Tuesday evening at that field over by the middle school—so obviously, these goggles have been perfect for that.)
But on the outside chance that some of you might occasionally use these goggles for non-bellicose purposes—might just go ski or ride for an afternoon rather than battle the Red Skull—I figured I’d evaluate some of Smith’s other claims.
“The biggest [style] in Smith’s Interchangeable goggle [lineup].”
This is true. It’s the biggest. If the smaller Smith Phenom fits you perfectly, it’s doubtful that the I/OX will work just as well for you. And if the Smith I/O goggle is borderline too big, then the I/OX will almost certainly be too big.
The Smith Phenom was my go-to goggle for years, and I still really like that frame. But when the Smith I/O came out, it became my go-to goggle because it allowed me to more easily switch out lenses.
The I/O fits me well, so if your powers of deduction are sharp right now, you’ll have figured out that the I/OX is pretty big on me. It works, and I like the look of the I/OX a lot, but it’s pretty big. Smith’s biggest. Smith was right.
“…superior fog prevention…”
Actually, this appears to be true, too. The only thing is that I never have any fog problems with my I/Os. It seems that the little Porex Filter dot thing that Smith puts on their lenses actually works.
Smith claims that the I/OX incorporates “a 5X Anti-Fog Inner Lens, the most advanced anti-fog lens ever created. Constructed of a hydrophilic, micro-etched surface to absorb moisture and disperse it over a wide surface area to prevent fogging, the new 5X Anti-Fog inner lens has been engineered to provide over five times the absorptive properties of anything on the market.”
Holding up an I/O lens to an I/OX lens, the micro-etched surface of the latter isn’t obvious. But Smith is doing something that for me, at least, has been very effective. So if you have had issues with fogging in the I/O, I would love for you to try the I/OX goggles and report back. I seriously can’t get them to fog.
Note: if you regularly ski in a rain forest or something, Smith offers both the I/O and the I/OX with a built in fan. And if you’re still fogging up, even with a built in fan…maybe you should just take up croquet instead.
“…and peripheral vision…”
The peripheral vision of the I/OX is eXtremely good. I can see everything, all around. Only thing is, I feel like the peripheral vision in my I/O goggles is really good, too, and my I/O goggles aren’t so big that the nose piece sits not on the bridge of my nose but just above my nostrils, acting a little bit like a nose plug for swimmers.
Of course, your face isn’t my face, so this might be a non-issue. But if your face is smaller than mine, you’ll probably want to wage war against the forces of darkness (or go ski) in something not quite so big.
Furthermore, I never felt that the peripheral vision of my Phenom goggles was lacking, either. In fact, in a back-to-back-to-back comparison of the Phenom, the I/O, and the I/OX, I had no issue with any of the three. In my experience, Smith has been doing peripheral vision well for a while now.
Where to Buy:
Smith Optics does interchangeable lenses right.
Built for smaller faces, the Smith I/OS goggle still offers impressive peripheral vision, plus an easy-to-change lens system similar to the larger Smith I/O.
Despite all the abuse our reviewer could dish out, the Giro Basis continued to offer clear, crisp vision.