Arnette Corner Man Review
Cons: Tight it, front heavy, several lens defects
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Arnette Corner Man
|Price||$45.26 at Amazon||$209.00 at Backcountry||$141.71 at Backcountry|
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|$249.00 at Amazon|
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|Pros||Great coverage, decent case, good for lower light conditions||Great clarity, excellent contrast with little color distortion, flexing frames, works for most faces||Excellent protection, great clarity, extremely comfortable, good for active endeavors, good for many faces||Excellent eye protection and coverage, durable design, great contrast with minimal color distortion, superb case||Great lens clarity, universally flattering style, surprisingly comfortable, durable build, good eye protection|
|Cons||Tight it, front heavy, several lens defects||Peripheral coverage not ideal, cleaner bag a little stiff, may be sporty-looking||Developed a slight lens defect, fit is less secure, coverage could be better||Heavy, large overall size and fit, expensive||Not polarized, heavy, large, case not overly protective, expensive|
|Bottom Line||Great coverage and good in low light but in general not an impressive competitor||A top-notch combo of versatility, functionality, and style||Excellent protection and great comfort, though not totally perfect||A great pair with excellent coverage and top-notch lens quality, but a bit heavy||Not only do these sunglasses provide good eye protection, they also have swagger|
|Rating Categories||Arnette Corner Man||Kaenon Clarke||Costa Del Mar Spearo||Maui Jim Kahi||Vuarnet District Medium Round|
|Lens Quality (30%)|
|Frame Quality (20%)|
|Style And Versatility (15%)|
|Specs||Arnette Corner Man||Kaenon Clarke||Costa Del Mar Spearo||Maui Jim Kahi||Vuarnet District...|
|Lens Tested||Dark Brown||Grey 12 Pacific Blue Mirror||Blue Mirror||HCL Bronze||Brown Lynx|
|Ideal Activity||everyday||water sports||water sports||everyday||everyday|
|Ideal Lens Light Conditions||Low to bright light||Bright light||Bright light||Medium to bright light||Medium to bright light|
|Polarized||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||No, but it is available|
|Visible Light Transmission (VLT)||12%
(not specified: 8-18%)
|VLT Protection Index||cat 3||cat 3||cat 3||cat 3||cat 3|
|HEV/Blue Light Protection (claim)||not specified||not specified||100%||95%||97%|
|Infrared Protection (claim)||0%||0%||0%||"infrared effective"||93%|
|Neutral/Contrast||Neutral||Increased contrast||Increased contrast||Increased contrast||Increased contrast|
|Lens Material||plastic polycarbonate||plastic - "SR-91" polycarbonate||glass - 580 Polarized (polycarbonate available)||glass - "SuperThin Glass"||glass - mineral glass|
|Protective Coatings||Anti-scratch||Anti-reflective back, hydro-oleophobic, mirror||Anti-scratch, hydro-oleaophobic, mirror||Anti-reflective on front and back||Anti-reflective back, silver bi-shade mirror|
|Can take prescription lens?||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||No|
|Case Included||Semi-rigid flex case and soft/cleaning bag||Rigid zippered and soft/cleaning bag||Rigid zippered and soft/cleaning bag||Hard rigid clam case and soft/cleaning bag||Semi-rigid flex case and cleaning cloth|
Our Analysis and Test Results
We tested the Corner Mans with Dark Brown Polarized lenses for everyday use. They're a medium fit and come with a semi-rigid zippered case and cleaning bag and can be purchased with prescription lenses.
There's not a lot of information offered about the Dark Brown Polarized lenses we tested from Arnette. They do offer 100% UV protection (as does just about every drug store pair out there) and are polarized polycarbonate (plastic) lenses that are naturally impact resistant. They're finished with an anti-scratch coating that didn't seem to work during our testing, as we easily picked up several tiny scratches in the middle of the lenses. They also aren't rated to block any blue light or infrared light, but the brown coloration increased contrast in the visible spectrum.
- 100% UV Protection
- 8-18% (estimate 12%) Visible Light Transmission (Category 3)
- 0% HEV/Blue Light Blockage, 0% Infrared Blockage
- Color: Brown, Material: Polycarbonate
- Impact Resistant, Anti-scratch
The Corner Mans are listed as having 8-18% visible light transmission, making them typical everyday sunglasses. By comparing them to numerous other models we tested, we estimate they're around 12%. This makes them a bit too light for most people's preference in very bright conditions (like a cloudless summer day on the water), but a great option for lower light conditions such as overcast, patchy clouds, and that awkwardly-bright/not bright golden hour as the sun rises and sets.
However, we found some rather unfortunate flaws in the lenses of the pair we tested. While many polycarbonate lenses often have small inconsistencies in the polarization layer, the Corner Man's were much more pronounced. Other models we tested with smaller flaws in this layer can only be seen against the light through another pair of polarized lenses. Our pair of the Corner Man sunglasses proved to be so flawed you can actually see the inconsistencies in the polarized layer with the naked eye. They also proved to have several small distortions in the lenses that cause a slightly warped view as you move your head. Though none of these irregularities are extremely obvious if you're not looking closely for them, it didn't take us much inspection to notice them and we read numerous online reports from other users having similar issues with their lenses.
The Corner Mans have a more specific fit that isn't as universally comfortable as most other models we tested. Their curved shape, smaller size, and tight bows have a tendency to dig in uncomfortably on some testers' heads. Our narrowest-faced tester found them to be uncomfortable after less than an hour, as they squeeze tightly behind her ears and nowhere else. Our testers with wider faces don't like wearing the Corner Mans, as they touch their temples. One medium-faced tester didn't mind wearing these glasses and enjoys their shape and fit.
These glasses are fairly lightweight, at just 32 grams, but still manage to be rather front heavy. Their more curved shape also touches the eyebrows of most our testers. And while most other sunglasses with this tight of wrap and fit are outfitted with flex hinges to make them more comfortable, the Corner Mans are not. All in all, it's difficult to say how comfortable these glasses would be on your face, as they seem to have a more specific, rather than universal comfort that may or may not work for your exact face and head.
Our pair of Corner Man glasses are the color "Fuzzy Dark Havana" and made entirely of nylon fiber. They have no extra nose pads or bow protection pieces attached and so nothing to potentially fall off later. They're a little bit flexible and pretty lightweight. They are backed by a 2-year manufacturer's warranty as well. Though we didn't experience any breakage during our testing, we are worried about the longevity of the standard barrel hinges on this frame that requires regular overextension. We feel that over time they may not last. And though we didn't have any other issues with the frames, we read numerous online testimonies from other users with different issues including color peeling off the frames and lenses popping out repeatedly.
Style and Versatility
These everyday glasses have a bit more of a "sporty" look than many others we tested. Their wraparound fit certainly adds to this, as does their more rounded oval shape. One tester put them on and was told she "looks like a lifeguard standing at the top of the water slide telling people when they can go". While they're not our first choice for style, they do offer some solid coverage and staying power that is much appreciated under certain circumstances.
With a base curve of 8, the Corner Man sunglasses are a pretty face-hugging wraparound pair of shades. The 61mm wide lenses help increase your field of vision to avoid the feeling of having horse blinders on while you wear them. The bows are also narrow enough to not obstruct too much, and their tight fit helps them hold the glasses in place pretty well even if you need to quickly run after your escaped dog or wondering child. If you like good coverage and sunglasses that sit close to your face, these tick both those boxes.
Though it doesn't enter into our scoring, we like to make a note of what kind of case every pair of sunglasses we test comes with. The Corner Man glasses include both a semi-rigid zippered case and a soft cleaner bag. Both cases work well and are easy to use, which is more than we can say about numerous other models we tested.
The Arnettes are an okay pair of sunglasses and are often on sale for far below their retail value. They could be a decent value pair of sunglasses if you like their tight, specific fit and you can snag a pair that doesn't have the lens defects ours did. If you decide to take that gamble, we recommend being sure of the return/refund/exchange policy offered from wherever you end up purchasing them, just in case.
The Corner Man sunglasses are a snug wraparound pair of sunglasses. Despite being less expensive than many others we tested, we also found several flaws in our pair. They're a more sporty look and fit though, and if you can ensure the quality of the lenses before you commit to them, they just might be a solid everyday pair of shades.
— Maggie Brandenburg