Vuzix iWear AV310 £180
14th Jun 2009 | 09:00
Will Vuzix's personal display be the last word in how we watch our movies, or will the novelty soon wear off?
To put it in a nutshell, iWear AV310 Widescreen is a wearable video display with twin 428 x 240 widescreen LCDs. Worn like normal glasses, it gives you an extra-entertaining home cinema experience.
Audio is handled by a couple of dangling earbuds, and it's powered by a standard AA battery, which is useful if you run out of juice half way through.
It's primarily designed for use with mobile video devices (connectors for iPod/iPhones and Nokia handsets are included), but with a little effort, you can connect it to most things that offer a video output. You might have to buy an adaptor or two, though.
In a head-to-head fight with the Carl Zeiss Cinemizer, they fought each other to a bloody draw. The Cinemizer offered better picture clarity and a richer, more vibrant image than the iWear, which were a little grainy and washed out in comparison.
Yet the iWear scores higher on audio, a widescreen aspect ratio option and better isolation, assuming you invest in an optional Light Shield. This is a rubber mask that fits over the iWear's screen and does a fair job of blocking out the outside world, but it costs £13 extra. iWear wins out on price, being more than £100 cheaper, even after you've forked out for the Light Shield.
PERSONAL SPACE: Vuzix's iWear can completely isolate you from the outside world
iWear AV310 Widescreen is capable of displaying 3D video. We doubt you'd get the chance to use this feature often, and in our tests it proved abysmal in 3D, even with Vuzix's own demo movie.
Vuzix iWear AV310 Widescreen is certainly fun and definitely more comfortable than watching a two-hour movie on a handheld video screen.
Yet comparisons with competitors aside, it's not cheap at £180. Before investing in one, ask yourself if it's something you'll use often enough to justify the price. As it stands though, the iWear is well made and great for long journeys.
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