• Price: £90 / €100
  • Frame/Lens: Black Satin / Wildlife

Often a ‘fresh take’ on snowboard goggle design is more likely to be found on our list of The Worst Goggle Designs Ever than on anyone’s head. However, occasionally there’s a new idea worth taking a closer look at. Take, for example, the new Von Zipper ALT-XM snowboard goggle.

OK, so they’ve not reinvented the wheel, but the Von Zipper ALT-XM’s design is certainly not something we’ve seen elsewhere in 2017/18. There’s hardly any frame to speak of, with only the moulded nose guard making its presence known. The result is, according to VZ, something closer to a pair of sunglasses than a conventional goggle.

"There’s hardly any frame to speak of, with only the moulded nose guard making its presence known"

This will please those who would be happy to ride in sunnies all the time, were it not for the implications that has for your eyes’ well-being. The Von Zipper ALT-XM is so light and anonymous that you’ll eventually forget you’re even wearing them.

The lack of any substantial venting across the top of the Von Zipper ALT-XM is compensated with subtle ones on either side, and the lens itself is big enough to offer the full spectrum of vision. Wildlife lenses provide the contrast you need, and the lightweight strap is easy to adjust.

If it’s a little too big for your liking, try the Von Zipper ALT-SM, which is the same but smaller.

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Tester's Verdict

Mike Brindley - whitelines.com

“If you, like Garth, fear change, avert your eyes. The ALT-XM is truly a weird specimen to get your head around.

Having no resemblance of a frame other than the lense reinforcement does make these goggles super light, but it also gives a weird sensation that there’s a lot of foam imitating what solid bits of plastic would normally do, i.e. keep the lens away from your face.

"The ALT-XM is truly a weird specimen to get your head around"

On the plus side, it’s really quite hard to find any real faults. That foam does do its job well, and keeps things comfy, and the flexibility of the unit means it fits like a dream."

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