Is blue light so bad for eyes, and disruptive to sleep, that we all need computer glasses? Perhaps, but why are these minimalist blue light-blockers better than free software?
So often talked about as a perk, work trips to busy conferences and meetings can so often turn into exhausting long-haul work sessions. But is blue light the real culprit?
A sight for sore eyes
Blue light is a high-energy wavelength, and prolonged exposure to it is unhealthy, says Spektrum, because “mounting medical evidence suggests that prolonged exposure to blue light – like that emitted by a computer screen or smartphone – may permanently damage the eyes and contribute to both the formation of cataracts and to the destruction of cells in the center of the retina.” No links to the “mounting medical evidence” are given on the website.
The blue hours
Spektrum also says that eye lenses naturally yellow with age, filtering out most blue light. For older people, avoiding blue light is all about protecting against cataracts, and also about sleep. “Exposure to blue light via electronic devices or office lighting after the sun has gone down can disrupt one’s circadian rhythm, making it harder to fall asleep or get a good night’s rest,” says the website. You see, blue light suppresses the body’s secretion of melatonin, a hormone that regulates sleep and wakefulness.
Software or specs?
TravGear is willing to accept most of that on face value, but is there a good technical explanation why the glasses are more effective than software like f.lux? It does essentially the same thing, and can be loaded onto a laptop. Spektrum was unable to provide TravGear with an explanation, which leaves us wondering why we can’t just travel with software rather than specs.
That said, the ProSPEK-50 Pro are well made and lightweight – they clock-in at a mere 15g. The medium size fitted us well, and they do feel pretty minimal while also feeling flexible and durable. The case is good, too – small and tough. However, they only offer 50% blue light blocking, which is needlessly complicated. Is blue light bad or isn’t it? If it is, shouldn’t a pair of blue light-blockers block it all?
Without a PhD in optometry, it’s hard to say whether blue light is really the evil that Spektrum says it is. It’s also impossible to understand why the ProSPEK-50 Pro are better than software. However, if you do indulge in long work sessions while on the move, the well-made ProSPEK-50 Pro are worth investigating.