Polarising aesthetics aside, in terms of functionality and lens attributes the POC Devour Clarity sunglasses are in a league of their own
- Exceptional clarity and eye coverage
- Hydrophobic, scratch-resistant lens
- Class-leading ventilation
- Tailorable fit with adjustable temples and nose piece
- Light weight at 40g
- Large design not suited to all face types
- Pricier than some rivals
When it comes to the best cycling sunglasses, the new POC Devour Clarity range shows the brand continuing where it left off with its mighty impressive Aspire Solar Switch sunnies. POC has gone all-out on the Devours, designed to work seamlessly across the company's entire helmet portfolio - road and mountain biking included. The company has been somewhat of a late adopter to the bold and progressive goggle-style trends dominating the eye protection space but has finally caved and the result is nothing short of spectacular.
POC sent us a pair of Devours in December to test ahead of its release and we've been using them in different weather conditions and helmet configurations in an effort to establish how they perform against the competition.
- POC Aspire Solar Switch sunglasses review
- Koo Open Cube sunglasses review
- Rapha Pro Team Frameless sunglasses
- Rudy Project Defender sunglasses review
Design and aesthetics
The POC Devour Clarity sunglasses represent a bold progression for the Swedish firm and build on the premium nature of its Aspire range. The Devour's most defining feature is the frameless design of the floating Clarity lens. Developed in partnership with Carl Zeiss, the one-piece lens clips into a clever, ergonomically designed frame management system that's been designed around providing its wearer with the perfect fit.
In much the same way as the Oakley Sutro Origins, the Devours also feature a similar punch-hole-design pattern with two sets of six vents on each side of the centrally arranged POC Clarity logo - a design attribute that doubles up as an anti-fogging solution. Closer inspection of the vents reveals a rather tasteful-yet-incognito touch: the model name and lens manufacturer printed on the frame beneath.
The frame is available in seven colour options: uranium black, hydrogen white, transparent crystal, moonstone grey, lead blue, uranium black translucent and basalt blue - ideal for colour matching, should you own a collection of helmets. The Clarity lens is interchangeable and can be had in a selection of colourful tints. We quite like the neutrality of the black frame/silver mirror lens combination.
In terms of branding, POC has toned down its usual brazen approach with a far more understated logo display. As such, the POC moniker resides on the temple section of each arm taking on an embossed black-on-black treatment.
POC has applied its design nous to maximum effect with the Devour sunglasses, especially with the frame system which is built to offer a personalised fit thanks to a series of clever touches. The temple arms can be manipulated to fit any head shape thanks to the four-stage length adjustment system - simply pull or push the arms into place. There's also an adjustable nose piece made from soft, grippy rubber that deforms to fit any shape. At 40g (actual) they're also pretty light given their size and don't feel particularly 'weighty' when in use.
The Clarity lens, however, is the magnum opus here. It clips into the frame via six frameless anchor points - two on the top, two on the bottom and two around the nose section. It's a very clever system that helps provide a clean aesthetic and functional approach when it comes to changing the lens. As previously mentioned, the lens itself has been designed together with Carl Zeiss. It's been optimised to deliver a crystal clear image through the careful application of an anti-glare, Ri-Pel coating - a hydrophobic and oleophobic treatment that protects the lens from water, dirt, oil, sweat, salt and dust. It also offers complete protection from UVA and UVB rays (UV400 rated).
POC has made a concerted effort to drive home the fact that the lens is resistant to scratches - an issue that has plagued the company's previous offerings. The lens is available in eight different types including clear: Clarity Road (no mirror Cat 2, light silver mirror Cat 2, silver mirror Cat 3, ML gold mirror Cat 2) and Clarity Trail (no mirror Cat 1, light silver mirror Cat 2, silver mirror Cat 2).
Having used these sunglasses extensively through December and January (the Rapha Festive 500 included) I can vouch for the excellent quality and performance credentials of the lens - even during wet, dark and rainy rides. The Ri-Pel coating is effective and combats road spray and other contaminants, even when riding in heavy rain. The floating nature of the eye shield and vent ports are superb in providing good ventilation and airflow, which in turn also helps prevent the lens from fogging up.
One of the biggest advantages of having such a comprehensively sized lens is the unobstructed and commanding view it provides the wearer. While some may dismiss it based purely on the over-the-top styling cues it really does wonders, especially when it comes to controlling the colour spectrum. Regardless of the conditions overhead, clarity is impeccable and the level of detail and depth of field is class-leading, even when negotiating dimly lit tree-lined lanes and B-roads.
As far as fit goes, the Devours are excellent and quite possibly the best-fitting sunglasses ever made by the brand. Much of this comes down to the tailorable nature of the arms and nosepiece that you can personalise to ensure optimal performance. For many cyclists, arm length is a contentious issue as this can interfere with the retention system and clash with the helmet structure itself - brand dependent of course - but the clever adjustment system ensures both fit and ergonomics are top class.
They're pretty versatile in application, too, and POC has designed them to play nicely with both its road and mountain bike helmets. They worked faultlessly together with the new POC Ventral Lite helmet, POC Omne Spin and Omne Air Resistance Spin MTB helmet.
Based on aesthetical merit alone the POC Devour Clarity sunglasses might not appeal to everyone but in terms of functionality and lens attributes, they're one of the best cycling sunglasses currently available.
As someone with a narrow face shape, I didn't expect to like the POC Devour Clarity sunglasses but the more I wore them and played with the adjustable fit, the more I realised how impressive they are when compared to the current crop of rivals. Having tested these sunglasses in a variety of weather conditions - rain, snow, cold and sun included - they're yet to disappoint in terms of out-and-out performance.
As expected, these are seriously pricey propositions at £220 / $250 / €250 but they'll undoubtedly go the distance, based purely on what we've seen in terms of lens resilience and overall quality. They've shown no signs of wear and tear, and the lens is still in tip-top condition. To sweeten the deal, POC also includes a spare clear lens for protection from debris and insects during night rides and the like.
View the Devour Clarity sunglasses at POC
Tech Specs: POC Devour Clarity sunglasses
- Price: £220 / $250 / €250
- Weight: 40g (actual)
- Lens: Carl Zeiss Clarity lens
- Frame type: Frameless
- Colours: 7 frame colours
- UV protection: UV400
Thank you for signing up to Cycling News. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.