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Suncloud Rambler Review

A solidly versatile pair of comfortable shades that are easy to wear and a great price
Suncloud Rambler
Photo: Amazon
Best Buy Award
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Price:  $55 List | $36.88 at Amazon
Compare prices at 3 resellers
Pros:  Lightweight, comfortable, secure, good balance, versatile, look good
Cons:  Hinges loosen, brown lenses are yellowy
Manufacturer:   Suncloud
By Maggie Brandenburg ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  May 27, 2021
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68
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#5 of 14
  • Lens Quality - 30% 5
  • Comfort - 25% 7
  • Frame Quality - 20% 7
  • Style and Versatility - 15% 9
  • Coverage - 10% 8

Our Verdict

The Suncloud Rambler are a shockingly lightweight and versatile pair of shades that cost a lot less than most of the competition. Their flexible bows provide a secure and comfortable fit, while classic rectangular lenses look good on just about everyone. The brown polycarbonate lenses aren't the most impressive around and are a bit on the yellow side, but they're still decent. They offer great contrast and clarity that make them as useful on the water as on the road. And with a price tag that's just a small fraction of many others, these sunnies come with some great value.

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Pros Lightweight, comfortable, secure, good balance, versatile, look goodLightweight, comfortable, stable, good on many faces, nice caseLightweight, true to color, minimal face touching, not super sporty-lookingLarge lenses, decent coverage, cool mirroring, good fit for large headsGood coverage, lightweight, many included accessories, inexpensive
Cons Hinges loosen, brown lenses are yellowyNot overly stylish, run small, temple grips could be cleaner cutRun small, fairly specific style, large edge gapsSilicone details aren't the best, intense back-lens reflections, odd feelNot very dark, bad glare, odd fit and feel
Bottom Line A solidly versatile pair of comfortable shades that are easy to wear and a great priceThese sunnies are light and comfortable for your face and eyes and a bit easier on your walletLightweight shades that stay solidly in place without looking as sporty as most of the restOversized shades that are a good fit for wider faces but not our favorite performersInexpensive, lightweight wraparounds with wide lenses and all the accessories to get you going
Rating Categories Suncloud Rambler Native Eyewear Wells Tifosi Swank SL goodr BAMFGs RIVBOS Polarized
Lens Quality (30%)
5.0
7.0
6.0
4.0
3.0
Comfort (25%)
7.0
6.0
8.0
4.0
4.0
Frame Quality (20%)
7.0
7.0
5.0
5.0
4.0
Style And Versatility (15%)
9.0
7.0
7.0
6.0
4.0
Coverage (10%)
8.0
8.0
4.0
6.0
5.0
Specs Suncloud Rambler Native Eyewear Wells Tifosi Swank SL goodr BAMFGs RIVBOS Polarized
Lens Tested Brown Crystal Grey Brown Beelzebub's Bourbon Burpees Black Mirror
Ideal Lens Light Conditions Medium to bright light Medium to bright light Bright Light Medium to bright light Medium to bright light
Polarized Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Fit Medium Large Medium Large Medium
Weight (grams) 25g 26g 23g 27g 25g
UV Protection 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%
Visible Light Transmission (VLT) 15% 12% Not specified Not specified Not specified
VLT Protection Index Cat 3 Cat 3 Not specified Not specified Not specified
HEV/Blue Light Protection (claim) None 90% None None None
Infrared Protection (claim) None 40% None None None
Neutral/Contrast Increased contrast Neutral Increased contrast Neutral Neutral
Lens Material Plastic polycarbonate Plastic polycarbonate Polycarbonate Triacetate cellulose Polycarbonate
Impact Resistance Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Protective Coatings Anti-reflective Anti-scratch, hydroleophobic Anti-scratch Anti-scratch, mirror Mirror
Can take prescription lens? No Yes Yes No No
Hinge type Standard/barrel Standard/barrel Autolocking integrated hinge Standard/barrel Standard integrated
Case Included Microfiber bag Semi-rigid zippered case, microfiber bag Microfiber bag Microfiber bag Semi-rigid zippered case, microfiber bag

Our Analysis and Test Results

We tested the Suncloud Rambler with Polarized Brown lenses designed for easy everyday use. They're a medium fit and come with a microfiber storage bag/cleaning cloth.

Performance Comparison


We're fans of these easy-to-love, inexpensive shades.
We're fans of these easy-to-love, inexpensive shades.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Lens Quality


The Suncloud lenses are made of polycarbonate, a type of durable plastic, and work quite well. We tested them in Polarized Brown and they are rated 100% UVA/UVB blocking with 15% visible light transmission — about average among similar glasses. They offer excellent contrast, in part because they're a touch on the yellow side of brown. While we don't think it's overdone or distracting, it's noticeable when viewing something obvious like clouds.

Polarized Brown Lenses
  • Polarized
  • 100% UV Protection
  • 15% Visible Light Transmission (Category 3)
  • 0% HEV/Blue Light Blockage, 0% Infrared Blockage
  • Color: Brown, Material: Polycarbonate
  • Impact Resistant, Anti-reflective

Many brown lenses tend to have slightly lower VLT rates to offer added comfort for your eyes in particularly bright light. With a VLT of 15%, the Rambler's still do just fine midday on a bright day and only struggle where nearly every pair of sunglasses we've ever tested struggle — that golden hour when the sun is shining directly across the horizon into your eyes. During this time of day, we also noticed that with the sun behind us, there's an occasional red glare spot flitting around near the outside edge of the lenses.


Upon closer inspection, the polarized layer of these lenses isn't perfectly applied and some distortion can be seen around the edges of the lenses, though this isn't noticeable when wearing. They have an anti-reflective coating that helps cut down visual distortion caused by reflections of objects around you, doing about an average job of preventing you from clearly seeing the reflection of your own face. The Rambler doesn't say anywhere that they have any anti-scratch coating but during our several months of testing, despite not always treating them very well, we didn't pick up any scratches.

Viewed through another pair of polarized lenses (in this case, held...
Viewed through another pair of polarized lenses (in this case, held up to the camera lens), you can see the minor polarization distortion in the Ramblers. This distortion is not detectable while you wear them though.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Comfort


The Rambler's are lightweight, well-balanced, and comfortable to wear. Tipping the scales at just 25 grams, they're on the lighter end of average among sunglasses we tested. They're a versatile medium fit that's a touch small for some but (in our experience) never in a way that took away from their comfort. They have small textured Megol nose pads that grip your nose even when you're not sweaty. The bows are thin and flexible, easily accommodating many face shapes, from narrow to wide. With rectangular lenses, they lightly touched the cheeks of most of our testing team, but not in a way that was particularly annoying.


These sunglasses are light, with a balance point that's just behind the hinges, helping them to sit comfortably on the face without feeling like they're pulling on the ears or sliding down the nose. They manage to feel light, bendy, balanced, and just right so that you can forget you're wearing them. Despite being on the smaller side, we were pleasantly surprised at how many different sizes and shapes of faces find them to be comfortable for long days in the sun.

These lightweight, well-balanced shades are easy to put on and relax...
These lightweight, well-balanced shades are easy to put on and relax in.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Frame Quality


Our Rambler pair came in the color "Blackened Tortoise", made of TR-90 Grilamid, a type of injection-molded nylon. The bows are impressively flexible while the main body of the frame is much less so. They're not the sturdiest frames we tested, but they're not terrible. However, we have some concerns.


The Megol nose pads in the pair we tested aren't quite as well-placed as we'd like to see, and make us a bit worried they might come out over years of use and abuse. We're also not impressed by the hinges, which are made of plastic, not metal. The bows are flexible, which helps take some of the pressure off the hinges when worn on wider heads, but it's not our favorite combination of attributes.

The Megol nose pads are much smaller than most other models we...
The Megol nose pads are much smaller than most other models we tested, though still large enough to get the job done.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

We've now had these sunglasses for a couple of years, and the hinges repeatedly work themselves loose in a lopsided fashion. With just regular use and normal folding and unfolding, the hinges need tightening every few weeks. We read numerous reports online of other users encountering the same issue with theirs. Perhaps this is more of a nuisance than an actual issue, but it could easily lead to a lost screw and certainly makes us lose some faith in the integrity of these frames.

The Ramblers offer great value for what you get.
The Ramblers offer great value for what you get.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Style and Versatility


Just about every person who put these glasses on was at least "okay" with wearing them. The majority of our testing crew really liked how they look and would happily wear them as everyday casual shades. They seem to work just as well on narrow or wide faces as angular or round faces, which is a solid achievement for a pair of sunglasses.


The Rambler is less sporty-looking than a lot of other sports sunglasses we tested. We think they look just as at-home driving a car as a boat and as good lounging on a beach as fishing from a kayak. They may not be the glasses you'd wear to a red carpet event but they offer a pretty wide appeal for most everyday uses.

The Ramblers have a wide aesthetic appeal and were well-liked by our...
The Ramblers have a wide aesthetic appeal and were well-liked by our diverse testing team.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Coverage


The Ramblers offer pretty solid coverage for a pair of non-technical sunnies. Their base curve of 6 is a fairly typical shape that very slightly curves around the face, offering more protection than a flat pair without being as stifling as a full wraparound set. The rounded rectangular lenses measure 57mm wide and 45mm high, which is a medium-large lens. The bows don't add a ton of coverage but also don't block peripheral vision.


We had several testers put these sunglasses on and shake their heads vigorously to see if they could dislodge them and found that they stay on fairly well. They may not be an optimal pair to wear on a run or a super bumpy mountain bike ride, but they're not bad. They sit close enough to the face to offer decent protection from the sun and even moderate protection from dirt without making you feel like you're wearing goggles.

With wide, tall lenses, the Ramblers offer solid coverage without...
With wide, tall lenses, the Ramblers offer solid coverage without compromising their stylish appeal.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Case Quality


Though we don't score this metric, it's always good to know what comes with your sunglasses before you buy them. In this case, we're not impressed. The Rambler comes with just a simple microfiber storage bag/cleaner bag with a drawstring closure, and that's it. Even worse, we aren't impressed with the bag's ability to clean the lenses. It mostly just shifted grease around the glasses, and we almost always had to grab a different cloth to actually get them clean. If you want a hard case, you'll have to buy that separately.

The Ramblers come with just a little cleaner bag that...
The Ramblers come with just a little cleaner bag that, unfortunately, doesn't do a very good job cleaning off fingerprints and eyebrow grease.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Value


The Suncloud Rambler is one of the less expensive sunglasses we tested, but they offer better performance than many more expensive models. Even among competitors costing up to 6 times as much, these shades hold their own when it comes to clarity, feel, and performance.

Trail running just before dusk, to test these shades in some very...
Trail running just before dusk, to test these shades in some very trying lighting conditions.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Conclusion


The Ramblers are a fairly comfortable, decently performing pair of sunglasses. They're lightweight and easy to wear while managing to look good on an astonishing variety of facial shapes and sizes. Though they're not the most amazing pair we tested, they're a great choice for sporty glasses you can also wear every day, and are pretty affordable to boot. In fact, we'd happily pay more for these glasses, making them a great value buy.

Even your dog looks cool in these.
Even your dog looks cool in these.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Maggie Brandenburg