Vuzix iWear AV920 Video Goggles

Discussion in 'Accessories' started by rmc08, Aug 24, 2009.

  1. rmc08

    rmc08 Well-Known Member

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    These goggles are very expensive, especially at a $350 price tag. But, are they really worth it, and how good are they? Well, that's what I'm about to tell you.

    Be sure to check out my upcoming video review comparing the MyVu Solo Plus EV All-In-One with the Vuzix iWear AV920!

    Vuzix iWear AV920 Video Goggles


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    When I first received these goggles in the mail, I was surprised of how small the package was. I sliced open the box, and found myself with a nice looking red box, sort of reminding me of a graphics card box. Unboxing video is here:



    List of things included:

    • Vuzix iWear AV920 Video Goggles
    • Carrying Sack/Bag
    • USB Charge Cable
    • WallCharger
    • RCA Cable-Female (AV Cable)
    • Temple Strap
    • iPod Dock/Connection Cable
    • Speaker Covers
    • Wire Management Clip
    • Manuals + Papers

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    I'm going to start off with my first impression. It's a little bulky, but is is very lightweight (2.9 ounces). It comes with a lot of accessories, but seems to only come with 3 cables. So, it will only work with iPods and anything AV related. I do like that it comes with a wall charger, since some similar products do not. Now, the charge time took a good 3 1/2 to 4 hours, which is pretty long. It is very powerful, which is why it takes fairly long to charge. Personally, I don't mind waiting, since it is well worth it for the amount of time that it hold a charge. USB does not give out as much power as the wall, so it takes from 1 to 1 1/2 hours longer. Personally, I'd say the device holds about 4-5 hours of battery, since I did go through a few movies before the device ran out. I did find out you cannot listen to music while these are on, which is a big disappointment since you will need to bring earphones along with the Vuzix iWear Goggles.

    Enough of the first impression, let's move to build quality. When I took them out of the box, I immediately realized that the temples of the goggles are extremely flimsy. They do not click into place when expanded, and instead just flap around. They also twist a bit, but I'm guessing it's to fit the size of ones head. The black part of the goggles (that hold the screen) is made of a hard plastic. If dropped, it shouldn't do any damage such as a crack. The worst it will do is maybe put a tiny scratch mark. The wires connected to the box are also very durable, and will not flop around; they are high quality wires. Next is the carrying bag, and it is made of a thin, fuzzy black material. The inside is made of nylon, making the bag very strong. USB cables have also come with the package, and they are very hard cables. They are not flimsy, and will not twist and distort like some wires do on other products. Also, the iPod Cable's dock connector piece is made of the same plastic that the goggles are made of, making it just as strong as the goggles. Lastly there is the wall charger. There is nothing wrong with it, and it is simply a wall charger. The metal prongs flip out from the side, so it is not bulky if you travel with it. The plastic material on the casing is durable, and will not even break if dropped from a natural height. So far, all of the things included have a pretty good build quality!

    Next is the goggle's functionality with iPods and composite cables. First, we'll start with the iPod. It is as simple as turning the goggles on, plugging it in with the included free cable, and starting up a movie. If your picture is off contrast or off brightness, simply click the wheel under the goggles, and it will bring up a menu. This menu consists of brightness, contrasts, and 2D/3D modes. Just scroll, click, adjust, and you're all set! Since the dock connector is blocked while you watch movies, you can't use your original iPod charger. But, what you can do is take the included USB cable and plug it in through the iPod dock connector, which will charge your iPod giving you infinite battery. If you don't want to charge the iPod through a laptop, simply plug the USB part of the cable into the included wall charger. Also, the black brick connected to the goggles holds the battery, and 3 cable ports: USB charge, AV In, and Audio (audio port is good if somehow the audio port is blocked). Now there is the composite cable connectors which are included in the package. Just take your PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Wii, etc., and plug it into the composite cable connectors. Then plug the other end into the goggles and turn them on, and you are now playing games on a huge screen. I tested the goggles out on Tom Clancy's HAWX in a c*ckpit view. To my surprise, I got a whole new experience of gaming, and it felt like I was turning and flying around in mid-air. Next I tried Grand Turismo in the dashboard view, giving me the feeling of drifting and racing with other people. For those who have Wii, I really suggest buying these since you can use them with Wii Sports, and try out all the different games they have.

    Now, I will be going over the functionality of the 3D modes. Well anyway, why would you need a 3D mode? On some Japanese, UK and special US TV shows, they support 3D output, so you can watch your favorite shows in 3D. (The 3D modes are Side by Side, Field Sequential, and 3 formats of Anaglyph: Amber/Blue, Red/Cyan and Red/Green) Auto 3D will also detect content watermarked by Vuzix 3D, and set it into 3D by itself. Also, If you have a 3D movie on a DVD, you can format it for the iPod and watch it with the goggles. Pretty cool huh?

    It's time for comfort! When you first place the goggles on your head, chances are the nose bridge (below) will not be fitted to your nose. Just do some adjusting by pushing it to the way you want, and place it on your head again. It could take some time to get right, but it will eventually be perfect. After watching halfway through a movie, I felt pressure on the top of my nose, giving me an irritating headache. I further adjusted it, and it felt better for a bit more. Feel free to adjust as much as you want, I can assure you that it will not snap off. Even though I got it as I wanted, it can still be a bit uncomfortable. Enough of the nose bridge... The temples are very comfortable, and feel like the big kind of sunglasses someone would wear on the beach. Anyway, besides the nose bridge these are very comfortable goggles.

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    Now for the best part, the video quality. Let's start with a comparison... This is like holding an iPod Touch about 1 foot (30cm) in front of you (or as they say, a 62" screen viewed from 9 feet), which is a VERY big screen. Now, I'm a big fan of anime, and I like my animes with subtitles. They are easily readable, and it is no trouble at all, that's how big it is. Now, when you watch movies, you will get an incredible experience; you will forget you're wearing goggles, and you'll think you're sitting in your living room! Don't expect HD quality, since they are not HD goggles. But do expect the best quality you can get without it being HD. The colors are never drained out, and the picture is never too dark, all thanks to the goggles being very user-adjustable.

    Lastly, we have the audio-quality emitted from the headphones. While I was watching Iron Man through the video goggles, I had one of the most incredible movie experiences. The sound coming from the goggles is absolutely outstanding! The bass booms when there is a fiery explosion, and the treble kicks in when there are bullets being fired all around. If I could buy these earphones separately to listen to music with, I would buy then in a heartbeat. These earphones are actually better than some pairs of $50-$80 earphones I have used, which is very surprising. The only thing I do not like about the earphones is that they are not noise-isolating, so when you're on a plane you will have to raise the volume a bit higher than normal. Either way, I really love the audio, and it is simply outstanding.

    Time for the Pros and Cons!

    Pros:

    • Nice build quality
    • Projects huge image
    • Fully adjustable
    • Comes with useful accessories
    • Pretty lightweight
    • Comes with wall charger

    Cons:

    • No support for playing music (movies only)
    • Temples are a bit flimsy
    • Earphones are not noise isolating
    • Nose bridge can be uncomfortable at times
    • Expensive

    In the conclusion of this review, I will say a few things. Even though it does not support music, it is really no hassle to carry a pair of earphones around. I would love to use the ones built-in to the video goggles though. The nose bridge may be uncomfortable at times, but it is easily adjustable and can fit all noses (adjusting more will help comfort). Even the temples may be a bit flimsy, but they stay on my ear alright and that's really what matters. The audio is amazing, and as I had stated is better than some $50-$80 pairs of earphones, and no noise-isolation isn't the end of the world! The video quality is outstanding and is as good as it can get without being HD, I really love the quality. The only thing I have to complain is the price. They are a bit expensive at $350, especially when you can buy a fairly large HDTV at that much. If you travel a lot, these are VERY good since not all airlines have televisions, or even the shows you may like. Even if you don't travel a lot, they are very good if you like to watch shows anywhere you normally can't (bedroom without TV, car, plane, etc.).

    Score:

    Audio Quality: 9.5
    Video Quality: 9.5
    Build Quality: 9.0
    Comfort: 8.5
    Goggle Functionality: 9.0

    Average Score: 9.1
  2. studangerous

    studangerous Super Moderator Emeritus Staff Member

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    Nice review. Expensive piece of kit though!
  3. ryanangus

    ryanangus Active Member

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    Always wanted to try out something like this... Not gonna happen anytime soon with that price tag

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  4. matinsa2005

    matinsa2005 Banned

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    wow incredible!!!
  5. Hayesy15

    Hayesy15 New Member

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    wait a few fears of so then there will be better models
    maybe apple could make one
  6. SmexyPenguin18

    SmexyPenguin18 Active Member

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    I can't even imagine how overpriced that would be!
  7. Korea

    Korea Member

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    Wow, didn't even knew those exist! Next thing we know, were going to be in Virtual reality games...which would be cool.

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  8. Hayesy15

    Hayesy15 New Member

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    yea lol virtual reality games

    i saw this thing on discovery channel and it was like a ball that u can run in then the character in the game moves is only in early stages but i was thinking to myself "why would u want to run in a game it is nothing like just sitting dere
    what i just said dere aint really virtual reality
    but still
  9. drazenm

    drazenm New Member

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    Thanks but no thanks, i would like to keep my eyes...
  10. Gershmer

    Gershmer Active Member

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    I had seen something like this that had a built in DVD player. This however, is much cooler.

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