Loupes and headlight combos are not particularly unique these days. Indeed, at least one manufacturer has built the battery pack for its cordless headlight into the loupes’ temple arms. Other manufacturers have chosen to give clinicians more flexibility by having mounts that allow you to use one brand of loupes and another brand of headlight.
Enova, a manufacturer that may not be as familiar to dental professionals as the more established players has taken a different approach to loupes and headlights. This preview focuses on the loupes. Please see the matching headlight in the Headlights category in FirstLook.
For this preview, we received the XG-Vue 2.8 W and the XG-Vue 3.8 W, both in the Sports Frame. (More conventional titanium frames are also available.) The frames are super cool, black plastic wrap-arounds with gray rubberized inserts on the arms to provide better cushions and gripping on your temples and ears. (The Sports frame also comes in clear plastic and gray/blue.) The retaining strap attaches to the ends of the arms through a clever pivoting mechanism.
The lens is one continuous, curved piece of rimless plastic that presumably eliminates the need for annoying, clip-on side shields. It attaches to the framework through a simple slot, which may cause you to wonder how these loupes can accommodate your corrective prescription. The answer is by an innovative and easily interchangeable insert that mounts into two recesses inside the frame. These corrective lenses cover the upper inner half of the plastic lens, allowing you to look above the actual telescopes to see clearly.
The 2.8x and 3.8x Galilean telescopes themselves are TTL and have a contemporary anodized aluminum silver cladding. The optics and quality appear to be top drawer. And they are waterproof, a feature that allows much easier cleaning and disinfection.
Besides the styling, the plastic framework and lens mean these loupes are very lightweight. The 2.8x weighs only 2.8oz/79.4g, while the 3.8x is only slightly heavier at 3.0oz/85.0g. Not the lightest we have ever tested, but close.
Enova is going up against some very stiff competition in the loupes market, with several competitive products already having earned 5-Star status. Nevertheless, the unique aspects of this system, namely interchangeable prescription inserts and easy washing under running water may intrigue you enough to take them up on their offer for a 45-day trial.