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Oakley Flak vs. Half Jackets


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#1 DoubleCup

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Posted 26 May 2009 - 08:36 PM

Just curious here...I have four pairs of Half Jackets and I've been wearing them on the golf course for years (off the course I wear Maui Jims :) ). Are the Flak Jackets an actual improvement over the Halfs or are they simply a case of "we need a new model to stir the interest pot and boost sales..." ?

I see a lot of posts about the Flaks and people are obviously all over them. I have no doubt that those who wear them like them every bit as much as I like my Halfs, but I don't see any real performance difference. Do the frames fit/feel better or just look different? Are the Flaks popular just because they are the current "in" model with the pros?  I mean it wasn't long ago that a lot of the pros were wearing Half Jackets, but now all you see are Flaks which is obviously Oakley's doing...and to their credit!!  I'm just not sure I get the mass migration.  Maybe the Halfs are being phased out? Anyone know?

Anyway, don't get me wrong, I'm all in favor of product advancement, but I tend not to spend my money on stuff that is of no improvement simply because it's the "latest model..." Hence why I stopped buying Taylor Made Drivers years ago...lol

Interested in your opinions...especially from those who have or had both.

Thanks!


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#2 frozen_rope

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Posted 26 May 2009 - 09:33 PM

I wear Maui Jim's off course, and have never worn any glasses while playing golf. I've tried my Maui's on course a couple of times but did not enjoy the course as much as without glasses.
Is there something special about Oakley's that make wearing glasses on course tolerable ?


View PostDoubleCup, on May 26 2009, 08:36 PM, said:

Just curious here...I have four pairs of Half Jackets and I've been wearing them on the golf course for years (off the course I wear Maui Jims :) ). Are the Flak Jackets an actual improvement over the Halfs or are they simply a case of "we need a new model to stir the interest pot and boost sales..." ?

I see a lot of posts about the Flaks and people are obviously all over them. I have no doubt that those who wear them like them every bit as much as I like my Halfs, but I don't see any real performance difference. Do the frames fit/feel better or just look different? Are the Flaks popular just because they are the current "in" model with the pros?  I mean it wasn't long ago that a lot of the pros were wearing Half Jackets, but now all you see are Flaks which is obviously Oakley's doing...and to their credit!!  I'm just not sure I get the mass migration.  Maybe the Halfs are being phased out? Anyone know?

Anyway, don't get me wrong, I'm all in favor of product advancement, but I tend not to spend my money on stuff that is of no improvement simply because it's the "latest model..." Hence why I stopped buying Taylor Made Drivers years ago...lol

Interested in your opinions...especially from those who have or had both.

Thanks!


#3 raw10628

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Posted 26 May 2009 - 10:11 PM

It is really just a matter of preference for me.  I prefer the flak jackets over the half jackets because they fit my face better. The smaller frame on the half jackets seems to let a little bit of light in on the sides where as the flak jackets don't.  To me they are just a more appealing frame and I'm guessing that is the case with most of the people you see wearing them.

#4 Bombn

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Posted 26 May 2009 - 11:15 PM

The Flak Jackets are hands down a MUCH better design.

1/2 Jackets were historically Oakley best selling sunglass accounting for roughly 35% of all sales the prior 4 years of the Flaks release (2004-2007).  Changing things up was a huge risk for Oakley at the time.

The Flaks design is MUCH better.  

Benefits over Half Jackets:

1. The shape fits much more people
2. The actual lens has more peripheral coverage.
3. The temple hinge is more indestructible, has a larger beefier section.
4. The lens mounting tabs (where the lens attaches to the frame) is a better design that results in less problems with the tabs tearing off.
5. Flaks come with a hardcase (rather than just the microfiber bag.)
6.  The temple tips are much more flexible and therefore more comfortable (also allows for better fit), the 1/2 Jacket temple tips are quite stiff in comparison.
7.  The "wings" temple design was a turnoff for some regarding style and also was difficult to fit under some helmets for some athletes, the Flaks have a more narrow vertical temple design that fit under helmets much better.

#5 DoubleCup

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Posted 27 May 2009 - 11:28 AM

View Post9Six4, on May 27 2009, 12:15 AM, said:

The Flak Jackets are hands down a MUCH better design.

1/2 Jackets were historically Oakley best selling sunglass accounting for roughly 35% of all sales the prior 4 years of the Flaks release (2004-2007).  Changing things up was a huge risk for Oakley at the time.

The Flaks design is MUCH better.  

Benefits over Half Jackets:

1. The shape fits much more people
2. The actual lens has more peripheral coverage.
3. The temple hinge is more indestructible, has a larger beefier section.
4. The lens mounting tabs (where the lens attaches to the frame) is a better design that results in less problems with the tabs tearing off.
5. Flaks come with a hardcase (rather than just the microfiber bag.)
6.  The temple tips are much more flexible and therefore more comfortable (also allows for better fit), the 1/2 Jacket temple tips are quite stiff in comparison.
7.  The "wings" temple design was a turnoff for some regarding style and also was difficult to fit under some helmets for some athletes, the Flaks have a more narrow vertical temple design that fit under helmets much better.

Nice analysis, thanks!
So I guess this means the Halfs are done? Otherwise it wouldn't have been a huge risk...


#6 tmorales

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Posted 27 May 2009 - 11:57 AM

Make sure you get the G30/35 lenses, it's unbelievable how good you can see at the course eben greens.  That lenses with the bigger frame and lense of the FLAK make it a great combo for golf.

IMHO

#7 Bombn

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Posted 27 May 2009 - 12:30 PM

The XLJ and Regular Flak frames are identical.   The only difference is the lens size and cut, the XLJ lens is deeper (comes farther down toward your cheeks).  The XLJ lens is generally the best lens size for golf as when you are standing over the ball the bottom of the lens is usually not visible. As long as the lens don't sit on your cheeks, go with the XLJ lens.

G30 - Best golf lens for not super bright conditions.
G30 Black Iridium - Best all around lens color for golf, especially in brighter conditions.
VR28 - Also very good for golf, and slightly darker than G30.
VR28 Black Iridium - darker version, great for very bright conditions.
Positive Red - The newest lens for Flaks and only available by ordering separately. Surprisingly good for golf.
Tungsten - Also a great choice for golf, again slightly darker than those above.
Gold Iridium - Good for someone that wants DARK lenses, but still offer pretty good contrast.

Any of the Grey based lens reduce contrast and flatten light, really not what you want for Golf.  These include Black Iridium, Ice, and Slate.  Also, the Fire lens really color things too much and are very dark lenses, just not the best combo for golf.

#8 DoubleCup

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 09:47 AM

Ok, I started this thread being slightly skeptical of the Flak over the Half Jacket....posing the idea that the Flak is not necessarily an improvement, but rather just a new product to sell. I believe I was a justified skeptic as Oakley is the best marketer Ive ever seen! After all, who else gets people like us to shell out $140 for a piece of plastic that probably costs $2.00 to produce. Now that's marketing!!

However, with that said, I tried on a pair of Flak Jackets last week at Golf Galaxy and instantly loved 'em!!   Flaks are much lighter and are more comfortable than the Halfs. The XLJ lenses no longer touch my cheeks (kind of annoying) and best of all....they look better!!  I will say that they feel a bit flimsier than the Halfs...in fact, they feel VERY flimsey....but I guess they have to, being as light as they are. Plus they don't feel this way while wearing which is most important.

Yeah, I bought 'em....haha :)  

I am officially converted and already looking for another pair.

P.S. Thanks Oakley for throwing in the case this time...very good of you to now include an actual case (albeit not without upping the price $35.00). Again, I realize the case probably cost $1.00 to make, but the sheer convenience of not having to find and purchase this separately is a god-send!!!!!!!!!  Please accept the $34.00 profit as my gift of appreciation.  I am forever grateful....:)

Edited by DoubleCup, 11 June 2009 - 10:25 AM.


#9 pingfan

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 06:26 PM

I have both the Half and Flak Jackets but the Flak Jackets are my favorites.  I bought the Half Jacket (Root Beer Frame - Stock Gold Iridium lens) about 5 years ago and bought my first pair of Half Jackets (Metallic Red with stock Rose lens and with white ear sockets) 4 years ago.  

I have gone crazy and have since purchased 3 more pair of Half Jackets (Black Frame w/G30 lens through Edwin Watts, White Frame with stock smoke lens with Black ear socks, and Root Beer Frame with Black Iridium G20 Lens).  The Root Beer with the Black Iridium G20 lens look very sharp.  I am done with purchases for now but the Flak Jackets are sharp looking sunglasses and I get compliments all the time.

I play with them on all the time because I wear contacts.  I feel that the XLJ lens shape and the Flak Jacket Frame aids in keeping wind and dust out of my eyes.  

Oh yeah, I also purchased clear XLJ lenses for when I am playing near dark.  Switching out the lenses is very easy.

#10 Tbone1976

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Posted 15 April 2012 - 02:31 PM

I am digging this thread out from the basement because it appears Oakley has released a newer version of the Half Jackets.  The Half Jacket 2.0's.

Has anyone had any experience with this yet?

Any comparision to the previous Half Jacket, or the current Flak Jacket?

Thanks,

Tony


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#11 heybrady

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 09:58 AM

I dont think the frames are ever better or worse than any other model, it is more a style thing and sometimes a fit thing.  It comes down to the lenses, and most lenses are offered on the Halfs that are offered on the Flaks (or most other models).  

I have Half Jackets with G30 & Fire and love the G30 for most all around conditions with exception of very bright light.  I wear the Fire on those days, but am thinking of trying Positive Red as an all-arounder for summertime.

The Flaks look better in my opinion, but not enough to justify the $150+ it would take to replace the frames and current lenses I have.  

BTW - Check Amazon periodically for both models, as I have seen Black/G30 Half Jackets for as low as $62 there. As with Amazon, prices fluctuate by the hour it seems.

#12 Bombn

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 05:51 PM

The main construction difference with the Half Jacket 2.0 is that there is a pin now that holds the frame front and the temples together, this is where most frames break.  Both the Flak and the original Half Jackets (as well as most Oakley frames) have compression prongs that hold the frame front and the temples together, when something bad happens (like you sit on them) the temples just pop off the frame front and can be easily put back together.  With a pin, the plastic just snaps off and its broken. The price is cheaper for the Half Jacket 2.0 versus Flak also  because they do not include a $25 Vault hard case with your purchase, you just get the sock.

#13 Tbone1976

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 06:59 PM

At first glance it looked like the design from the 1.0's to the 2.0's was slightly different.  Looks like they lost the wing that was on the 1.0's and thickened the stems a little, almost between the 1.0's and the Flak's.

I have a weird face (insert joke here), but it seemed like the regular Flak lenses were to small, and the XLJ Flak's were to big (lens), and the XLJ on the Half's was better, but prefered the thicker stem of the Flak's, so I did not know if anyone had experience with the 2.0's.

I would probably get the G30 and possibly a Positive Red lens.  G30 for all around, and positive red for very bright days.

Although you can't custom build a pair of 2.0's yet....

#14 Pepperturbo

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 07:09 PM

Frames fit differently, but not what I would refer to as an improvement.  I've been wearing Half Jackets with G30 Rose lenses on the course since 08; prior M frames with similar lenses.  I have 2 other lenses for the half jacket, for varying conditions.  Both styles have been outstanding for me.  IMO choosing sun glasses is akin to choosing a putter - very personal.  Are they worth the cost... probably not, but I can afford them.
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#15 golf_n_ma

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Posted 30 August 2013 - 05:31 PM

Anybody have any feedback on whether or not to shell out the extra money for the polarized lenses? Thanks


#16 Yanki01

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Posted 30 August 2013 - 06:18 PM

this is an old thread but for golf i wouldn't spend the extra money for polarized lens if your sunglasses are golf only. if you look at the golf specific sunglasses on oakley.com, they're all non-polarized. if you're fishing or at the beach then absolutely i would recommend polarized to reduce the glare which is all that they do. not much glare needs to be reduced on the course.

i will be playing out of town next weekend and before i play will be picking up the flak jacket XLJ in G30 lens. Just want to see what frame color goes best.

you do have the option of buying polarized lens and i believe depending on where you buy them you can return them within 15-30 days to try them out?

Edited by Yanki01, 30 August 2013 - 06:34 PM.

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#17 golf_n_ma

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Posted 31 August 2013 - 06:29 AM

View PostYanki01, on 30 August 2013 - 06:18 PM, said:

this is an old thread but for golf i wouldn't spend the extra money for polarized lens if your sunglasses are golf only. if you look at the golf specific sunglasses on oakley.com, they're all non-polarized. if you're fishing or at the beach then absolutely i would recommend polarized to reduce the glare which is all that they do. not much glare needs to be reduced on the course.

i will be playing out of town next weekend and before i play will be picking up the flak jacket XLJ in G30 lens. Just want to see what frame color goes best.

you do have the option of buying polarized lens and i believe depending on where you buy them you can return them within 15-30 days to try them out?

Thanks for the feedback!




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