Last year I whacked my head pretty good. I mean real good. Basically, I knocked myself silly and was thankful to be wearing my Giro G10 that i quickly fired off a thank you note to Giro. Basically, I dig Giro helmets. Cycling to snowboarding they've managed to keep my dome in one piece for many years. So I was pretty happy when they shot me a few pairs of goggles last season. I didn't get the opportunity to pull them out for testing until only recently so I figured lets give Giro their due.
Over the years I've had every brand of goggle covering my eyes in every type of conceivable condition from Oakley in blizzard to Spy on a blue bird day to Electric electric on a gray day to Anon in rain to Bolle, well OK, the bolle day was another blue bird day) to Quiksilver while running a jackhammer as snow fell! Now Giro in a blizzard and blue bird day as the sun went down in DC.Overall, lets be honest, there isn't much to goggle testing.
Does it keep the wind, rain, sleet sun out of your eyes while protecting them from the sun? Check and congratulations on a job ... done. All sarcasm aside there's all sorts of minutae that goes into good goggles. Fit to ensure there's no pressure points and everything is snug and sexy like a prince song. Nobody wants their goggles flopping around like an old pair of granny panties that your college one night stand wore years ago. Just ask anybody wearing a pair of Dragon's - they know what I'm talking about. next up we can't have fog . save the fog for London and Friday the 13th movies that stuff has got to go! Your goggles fog up say bye-bye to any resemblance of a good time! Finally, your goggles can be the dopest collab, colorway tightest matching steez on the hill but if you don't have a good field of vision or god forbid some weird blind spot... forget it, they suck. Now that we have the criteria established lets look at the Giro basis.
The hardest part of reviewing the basis was that I spent most of my seven hours hiking. My body is like a furnace when I hike. I can wear a single base layer with a shell in 30 degree weather and still be too warm. So in my knit beanie there was some surprise when the basis didn't fog up. This was a very good thing. Plus one for Giro on giving the Basis ample opportunity to not fog up. This is my singles biggest pet peeve with optics, goggles that fog before you take a run. It's a simple fix and likely has as much to do with the rider as it does the goggle. The reality is though some cheaper goggles will fog up quicker. Luckily these did not in conditions I would expect them to become not visible.
The fit with a beanie was good. Not great but good. Some minor fumbling was to be had in order to ensure there wasn't an air flow coming straight into my eyeball. Nobody likes the "No Country for Old Men' air pressure coming into their right eye. But, after a few minutes it was resolved. The fit with my Giro G10 (still banged up from last year) was OK. I had hoped for a better helmet to goggle interface as it's the same manufacturer but considering I'm running an old G10 I can let it slide. There wasn't a massive gap but it didn't feel 100%. Again, I don't know whether to attribute this to the goggle frame, the strap or the older helmet so I'll leave this one a wash but of all points - this is one that should have been hit out of the park.
Where the Basis did excel was in the field of vision. I felt the peripheral vision was equal to any Oakley's I run on the regular and nothing was obscuring my line of sight. This seems like it would be the easiest thing but from an engineering standpoint you just can't slap a massive frame and lens on a strap. Giro has managed to keep the field of vision open and not overly increase the frame and lens size. I don't think there's a correlation to the frame size and my fit issues as of yet. But god forbid I get a newer g10 or Seam from Giro if they don't sync then ... go back to making helmets.
Bottom line though, all in, the Basis was a well functioning goggle. Now is it worth $119? That's another question. Spadout shows the Basis ranging anywhere from $71 - $114 so it's all a matter of what you can get at a good price. I think you can do much worse than the basis goggle wise but you can also likely do a little better. the only goggle I've had get big marks from my review process and others is the Oakley Crowbar but I think they basis only falls just short of that at a drastic price reduction. $71 vs. $200 is no contest so if you're looking for a workhorse goggle give the Basis a shot and if you have any helmet fit feedback let me know.