Rudy Project Keyblade Photochromic Glasses – Multipurpose frames for many light levels.

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Launched today are the latest 2020 products from Rudy Project, including these new Rudy Project Keyblade frames with photochromic lenses, which we picked up at a preview at Impact Sun Valley, Idaho earlier this summer.

Rudy Project has a background in road and triathlon, though they produce glasses for a whole array of specific purposes – even golf! However the Keyblade is designed for multi-use applications rather than being activity specific.

Rudy Project Keyblade
Near clear in low light conditions.

Rudy Project Keyblade key features:

  • Interchangeable Lenses
  • Vent Controller System
  • Adjustable Anti Slip Nosepads
  • Fully Adjustable Anti Slip Temples
  • RP D Centered Optics
  • RX options
Rudy Project Keyblade
Hannah modelling them on their arrival, in bright sunlight. She’s still learning to smile.

The Rudy Project Keyblade comes in a range of frame colours, with eight lens options. We have the ‘ImpactX Photochromic’ lens, in ‘2Black’ colour. ImpactX is a lens which has the photochromic properties built into the lens, rather than as a coating, which is reputed to give clearer optics. The material was originally developed with military applications in mind, so you can bend and hit the lenses – with stones, say, or in a crash – and they won’t shatter. In fact, they’re guaranteed to be unbreakable!

The Clear 2Black option offers light transmission from 9% to 74%, which is the darkest offering available in the photochromic range.

The Keyblade frame is designed to be highly ventilated for air flow and anti fog properties, while also including plenty of fit adjustment, and the ‘RX’ allows you to include a prescription lens behind the main lens.

Rudy Project Keyblade
Tester Charles adopting the ‘gaze afar’ pose.

That’s the tech, how are they out on the trail? We got local rider and racer Charles to put them to the test.

On the trail

Charles says…

Having worn Rudy Project glasses forever I am slightly biased so it was no surprise that I got on really well with these. They’re not a radical departure from my current set apart from being photochromic. I do a mix of road and off road so I managed to test these glasses in various conditions albeit it’s hard to find a lot of sunshine in Hebden Bridge. Fit is really good and the mouldable nose piece enables a tight comfortable fit. I still got some movement on bumpy terrain but that’s not unusual.

Rudy Project Keyblade singletrack review
Comfortable with fit adjustment and ventilation.

Reaction to sunlight was really quick from clear to shade, but moving from shade to clear was not quite as rapid. I don’t think this is unusual for these type of lenses and doesn’t really cause a problem on the road. Off-road however there were a couple of rides when I disappeared in to the trees and visibility was a little sketchy.

Rudy Project Keyblade review singletrack
Charles, smiling just before he realised the next descent was peppered with cow pats.

The field of vision is really good. I’m not a fan of full rims so these were great. 

I really liked the tint in the glasses in full sunlight. It was much better than my current set. Visibility is really good and somehow doesn’t feel too dark but still feels like it’s protecting your eyes. 

Rudy Project Keyblade
Suitable for sloppy conditions too.

On the road in the rain (which was tested significantly in August!) They seemed to clear quite quickly and they never misted up. Visibility was excellent actually in most conditions and even on the hardest climbs I didn’t experience any misting. 


Overall I’d say they were the best glasses I’ve worn in terms of fit and functionality.

High praise from Charles.


Hannah picked these glasses up at Impact Sun Valley, Idaho, where her travel and expenses were covered by Crank Tank.

Review Info

Brand: Rudy Project
Product: Keyblade
Price: $224.99
Tested: by Charles Gray for 6 weeks
Author Profile Picture
Hannah Dobson

Managing Editor

I came to Singletrack having decided there must be more to life than meetings. I like all bikes, but especially unusual ones. More than bikes, I like what bikes do. I think that they link people and places; that cycling creates a connection between us and our environment; bikes create communities; deliver freedom; bring joy; and improve fitness. They're environmentally friendly and create friendly environments. I try to write about all these things in the hope that others might discover the joy of bikes too.

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