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Review Summary

Easily my second favorite pair of sunglasses from District Vision (solely due to the fact that the Junya Racers will always be peak awesome), the Nagata Speed Blades not only have the coolest name ever, they are also the perfect dual function shades. The iconic aviator style has been elevated with an athletic and slightly minimal interpretation that allows them to be easily worn day to day as well as perform during any athletic pursuit. The details contained within each pair are off the charts making them a true pleasure to wear.

A six base frame provides a subtle contour in the shatterproof polycarbonate D+ lens that wraps around the face. Anti-reflective and oleophobic coatings have been applied to the inside of the lens which aid in eye protection and water/oil repellency, a huge help during mid summer runs. The Nagata Speed Blades are by far one of the lightest pairs of sunglasses I’ve ever worn (along with many of the other District Vision models), allowing me to almost forget I’m even wearing them. This is largely due to the titanium and TR90 nylon construction that results in an ultra light final product weighing just 23 grams. An adjustable nose pad and temple tips provide the option to dial in the fit and snugly secure the sunglasses during any type of activity. At a price point of $295, they’re not cheap. That being said, the durable construction allows them to effortlessly handle all sorts of bumps, drops, and scratches without showing the slightest signs of wear.

Review Ratings


  • Super lightweight titanium construction feels positively forgettable on the face 
  • Fully adjustable nose pad and temple tips make for a perfectly snug fit that stays in place during vigorous activity
  • Incredibly flexible and durable design with a shatterproof polycarbonate lens and TR90 nylon body
  • Frameless construction along the bottom of the lens provides a unique aesthetic


  • Priced higher than other alternatives, however, the feature set is off the charts
  • Fewer color combination options than many of the other District Vision models
  • May appear a bit large on smaller more petite faces

District Vision Nagata Speed Blade


Review Details

District Vision Nagata Speed Blade Sizing

If you own a pair of District Vision sunglasses, then you won’t be surprised to find that the Nagata Speed Blade has all of the familiar adjustment features that allow each pair to dial in to the unique contours of every face. I’d classify the shape of my face as relatively average to ever so slightly narrow. For reference, I find the Junya Racers to fit absolutely perfect with the dramatic curved lens extending to each side of my face, slightly wide, yet fully covering my peripherals. The arms shoot straight back in a parallel fashion with minimal to zero widening. The Keiichi model fits me a bit smaller with the arms flaring out when extending to my ears. I’d say the Nagata Speed Blades fall right in the goldilocks zone in terms of width and fit. Not too wide and not too narrow.

By my measurements, the lens on the Nagata Speed Blade comes in at 2 inches tall at the highest point with the middle bridge to outer edge measuring roughly 2.5 inches wide. From arm to arm at the attachment point is 5.375” wide. Compare this to the Junya Racer at 5.5” and the Keiichi at 5.125” and you’ll see what I mean regarding the sizing. The Nagata Speed Blade also comes with a six base frame which gives it a nice gradual curvature to wrap around the front of the face. This feature too fits right in between the super aggressive curvature of the Junya Racer and the more modest nearly flat Keiichi. While sizing and style preference will vary from person to person, I can’t praise the overall dimensions of the Nagata Speed Blade enough.

Being a cyclist and long distance runner, there are two main things I seek in a new pair of functional sunglasses. Clearly, the first is eye protection from the harsh rays of the sun. I’ll cover District Vision’s mastery of this in the construction section. Second is the ability to positively forget that I am even wearing sunglasses. This has never held more true than with any pair of District Vision offerings, the Nagata Speed Blade included. With a three way adjustable nose pad that can extend out towards the bridge of the nose and then expand or contract, I am able to dial in the fit to keep the glasses from shifting during hard runs. While I have yet to have a need to modify the positioning of the temple tips, there is the option to twist them inward for greater friction behind the ear. You can also turn the tips a full 180 degrees which then gives you a bit more of a hook shape for added grab. 

Once fully adjusted, I can shake my head side to side as well as up and down with decent force and not experience even the slightest amount of unwanted movement. When looking straight down toward the ground and jolting my head in various directions, there is some slight shifting, yet not enough to remove the glasses from my face. I wouldn’t say these have the same level of hold as the Junya Racers, but they’re definitely a close second. The ability to keep the Nagata Speed Blades firmly in place is partly due to the unbeatable fit, but I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the fact that they also only weigh 23 grams. Both of these factors make wearing the Nagata Speed Blades during exercise a true afterthought. 

District Vision Nagata Speed Blade Construction

While District Vision initially won me over with their unique designs and undefeated color combinations, it is the technical functionality and quality of construction that keeps me purchasing more pairs than I will ever need. The intricate details and finishing touches subtly gracing each pair of Nagata Speed Blades truly make them an unassuming special pair of sunglasses. While not immediately noticeable, the Japanese precision made frame and lens is packed with a feature set that far surpasses competitor offerings. 

As mentioned a moment ago, the Nagata Speed Blades tip the scale at only 23 grams. To put this into perspective, that is roughly the weight of 4 and a half pieces of standard printer paper. In order to keep things shockingly light, titanium elements were used where structure was needed as well as in all fastening hardware. The exterior is made up of TR90 injected nylon which is a slightly flexible and highly durable material. Many of the Nagata Speed Blade colorways come in a translucent nylon which allows you to see all of the well engineered inner workings.  

Securing the lens is a six base frame which is essentially a medium curvature on the scale of 4, 6, 8, and 10. The higher the number, the more curve in the lens, and thus, more light blockage from the peripherals. The proprietary shatterproof polycarbonate lenses that District Vision has meticulously developed are where the brand really shines. All of the Nagata Speed Blade lenses feature an anti-reflective and oleophobic treatment along the interior. The former does just as it sounds while the latter is responsible for repelling water and oil like that found in sweat to help keep vision clear at all times (fingerprints on the other hand, are still an issue). Each lens also provides 100% UVA/B protection.

Depending on which lens you opt for, there are varying levels of function and light transmission. The D+ Black Rose lens (probably my favorite) found on a few of the Nagata Speed Blade models features variable light transmission that fluctuates based on the environment. Brighter days will see as little as 15.6% of light shine through while on cloudier days or in shadier environments as much as 35.15% of light can shine through. The black rose variation also only lets in 14.19% of blue light. The D+ Sports Yellow lens is perfect for full low light activities such as those at dawn or dusk as it transmits 74.4% of visible light and 31.67% of blue light through to the eyes. The more standard and darker D+ G15 lens provides the most protection with only 11.57% of visible light and 7.21% of blue light being transmitted. While it’s tempting to select a lens based solely on the aesthetics, there truly is a functional scenario for each pair. 

While I touched on it in the sizing section, it’s worth reiterating and expanding upon the adjustable elements of the Nagata Speed Blades. The nose pad is made from a squishy hypoallergenic rubber that is rather pliable. Where it contacts the nose are a good amount of ridges which provide additional friction for a secure fit. A thin piece of grade 2 titanium runs within the nose pad and serves the purpose of molding to the bridge of the nose. The nose pad can be squeezed, widened, or pulled toward the face to dial in a completely custom fit for each athlete. The squishy rubber temple tips found at the end of the arms are rotatable giving you the option to increase the angle at which they lay. This can help provide some more grip behind the ears if desired.

With the weight being minimal and the fit being top notch, you’ll likely never have an instance where the glasses will unwillingly leave your face. If that were to happen and they did contact the ground, rest assured that these things are about as durable as it gets. Because the material selection is second to none, I have had zero issue with scratches, scrapes, scuffs, chips, or just about any type of blemish. And trust me, these have had their fair share of clumsy drops and oblivious crushes. Tolerances have remained tight with only the necessary amount of horizontal movement being present in the arms. I can’t yet comment on exactly what the longevity will be, but I will say these have stood up to the near daily use and athletic abuse of one and half years with what appears to be many more on deck.

District Vision Nagata Speed Blade Style

I’ve never been a major fan of the traditional aviator sunglasses with the thin gold rim and pitch black lenses. They are overplayed and are often worn by packs of top gun fanboys relieving their high school highs. The Nagata Speed Blades, on the other hand, are certainly different. The District Vision aviator interpretation was successfully executed with materials that completely contrast the original. Liberties were taken to modernize the design by keeping the underside of the lens frameless, probably my favorite stylistic touch. There’s also the option to choose from a range of awesomely unconventional color combinations including black with a yellow lens, transparent gray with a black rose lens, bright orange with a black rose lens, and the limited edition stone with a reflective silver mirror lens (I’m still bummed that the pink mirror only made its way to the Junya Racer and Kocharu).

Given the slightly tame shape yet high performance nature of the Nagata Speed Blades, they can easily be worn while doing just about anything. This pair has become my number one go to any time I step out of the house to grab coffee, run to the store, commute to work, you name it. The black rose lens effortlessly complements any neutral or earth tone colors (essentially my closet) which make them a no brainer. I also receive fewer WTF looks than when wearing my Junya Racers at school drop off which I suppose could be a pro or a con depending on the level of attention you seek. 

When transitioning to either a run or ride, the Nagata Speed Blades are one of a kind. You’re highly unlikely to zoom past another athlete with sunglasses resembling anything close to the Speed Blades. The fact that my typical running gear consists of black shorts and you guessed it, a black shirt, I feel the rose-tinted lens and transparent frame of the sunglasses give me some sense of proper style.

District Vision Nagata Speed Blade Value

I’ll be honest, when I purchased my first pair of District Vision sunglasses, I too questioned whether they would be worth it. I wondered if I would find value in them beyond the obvious aesthetics. With prices ranging from $250 - $315 for the standard models, it’s easy to become trigger shy. Two years and four pairs later, I have certainly become a firm believer in just about all of the District Vision silhouettes (still holding out on a Koharu purchase, but the itch is growing).

The Nagata Speed Blade is priced at $295, admittedly not cheap. But when considering the functionality, versatility, and longevity, the scale begins to balance out. Of the four pairs I own and use daily, not a single one has a scratch on the lens or any type of blemish on the body. The fact that these can be worn during long runs or rides and then easily transition to errands around town definitely helps justify the cost. I’ve also yet to find a pair of sunglasses that match the same level of eye protection, comfort, hold, and lightweight properties that you’ll find with the District Vision Nagata Speed Blades. If you’re a serious endurance athlete with a need for an aesthetically pleasing pair of performant sunglasses, look no further.

Mentioned in this article:

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