Goggle Review: Zeal Z3 GPS
24 Oct, 2012
Intended Purpose: The Z3 GPS goggle combines Recon technology with clarity, strength and goggle technology. It’s also capable of tracking everything on the mountain, from your vertical to your speed to the temperature.
Location: I wore the goggles in the summer at Timberline, OR while riding Windells Camp.
Conditions: Sunny bluebird conditions
Color: I rode the Z3 goggles in the matte black colorway. It’s a subtle checkered print on a black goggle that keeps it simple for a frame.
Lens: I ended up riding with the polarized automatic that helps cut glare and light transmissions. On the sunny conditions, I felt it did fine for the riding without letting the sun overtake my eyes.
Fit: Since I wore the goggles with a beanie, I noticed the fit and weight of the goggles more than if I had worn a helmet where it can secure the goggles better in place. For the fit, I have a smaller profile face and these goggles were definitely more medium to large fit. I wish I had tried them on a helmet to get a better feel for them. Because the fit was off for my face, I couldn’t view the display as easily. I had to tilt the goggle to be able to view it better.
Helmet Compatibility: Unfortunately, I was not able to try these goggles with my helmet.
Visibility: The goggle overall is on the larger side but the vision feels boxed in. It sits farther off your face so there is some adjustment to the goggle. Overall I was okay with the visibility but it felt more confined than expected and even though they are a larger frame you don’t feel that way on the slopes.
Features: The Z3 GPS goggles are all about technology and tracking. You can track your runs, clock your speed and basically tech up snowboarding on the mountain. A built in wide screen display lets you view each run and check out your speed while you do it. The Z3 also features a anti-fog infused lens process, impact resistant frame technology, high density lens technology, 100% UV protection, helmet compatible, dual strap adjustments, optimum lens, available in polarized automatic, integrated with recon MOD GPS system. I didn’t really test the temperature gauge with the actual outside temp but I had heard that it takes into account body heat as well.
Durability: I was only able to try these goggles in the summer and didn’t get to play with them during a typical winter. I’ll definitely try them out this season over a longer period of time.
Thoughts: Riding with these at Timberline meant some fast laps and testing the GPS (which can be good and bad, haha) because you are testing your speed and you don’t wanna go slow to do it. I think the idea of the goggle is great and it gives a goggle to those wanting a more analytical side of snowboarding by tracking runs, speed, temps and much more. For my own personal riding, I felt that the fit didn’t work for me which impacted using the display to check my riding. All the features of the goggle work and could definitely be important but I think for my own personal taste, I’m fine with goggles that offer visibility and good fit without all the bells and whistles.
Review Disclosure: Zeal sent me this goggle to review over the Summer. I shipped it back to Zeal in September after using it.