Recon-Zeal Transcend Heads Up Display Snow Goggles

These are snowboarding/ski goggles with a little heads up LCD and GPS. Think of it as a fighter jet pilot's helmet for the slopes.

Plusses

The real-time data display in the goggles is the big ticket item here. You can see the temperature, time of runs, current/average speed, elevation changes, and top speed for the day. I earned about six hours battery life before needing to be charged by USB cable—enough for a day trip before it needs to be recharged while you rest. And the included mapping software charts out your day's motion on maps. It sounds like Sci-Fi, but really works.

Minuses

The display isn't technically heads up, meaning you have to glance down in order to see your current stats. My initial disappointment about the placement soon gave way to relief: If the screen took up more of my field of vision, there's a good chance the Ski Patrol would be picking pieces of me out of the trees.

Although optics are excellent and on par with most high end goggles, because of the display, they are deeper than usual and thus peripheral vision suffers. These are also some of the heaviest goggles I've ever worn. Next year, Recon is working on models that will display point of view videos, buddy tracking data and control mp3-playing smartphones and sportscams over Bluetooth. The next-gen electronics modules will also be sold separately from the goggles themselves, and will plug and play into a handful of compatible models.

Price

Polarized $399; Polarized photochromatic $499

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