Spy Foundation+ Goggle

Vital Rating: (Very Good)
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Tested: Spy Foundation Goggle

The new top-of-the-line eyewear from Spy with a little “Showtime” style sprinkled in.

Rating: Vital Review
Tested: Spy Foundation Goggle
The Good:

Field of view is one of the biggest - Even though they are large, they’ve fit every helmet we’ve tried - Foam is comfortable, forms great seal, and is a sweat sponge

The Bad:

Price, for not having rigid lens - Flexible frame might give you pressure point on nose

Overall Review:

When it comes to modern motocross goggles, bigger is better… To a point. Obviously the bigger the goggle, the wider the field of vision, but they also have to fit in your helmet, so moto goggles do have size limitations. Yet, filling up all the space in a helmet’s goggle port without any room for air flow can also be a problem when it comes to ventilation. Spy claims to have fixed this conundrum with the new Foundation Goggle, which, according to Spy, has the most peripheral vision of goggles on the market.

SPY Foundation Goggle Features

  • Widest peripheral on the market
  • Happy Definition (HD) Lexan lens
  • Rise+ ventilation system
  • 45mm roll-off system
  • Triple-layer Isotron face foam
  • Outrigger strap connection
  • 45mm strap
  • MSRP: $95 - $110

You can see Jeremy McGrath's new logo in the center and signature in the right corner.

First Impression

MC is the man, and his new logo, featured on

Overall Review:

When it comes to modern motocross goggles, bigger is better… To a point. Obviously the bigger the goggle, the wider the field of vision, but they also have to fit in your helmet, so moto goggles do have size limitations. Yet, filling up all the space in a helmet’s goggle port without any room for air flow can also be a problem when it comes to ventilation. Spy claims to have fixed this conundrum with the new Foundation Goggle, which, according to Spy, has the most peripheral vision of goggles on the market.

SPY Foundation Goggle Features

  • Widest peripheral on the market
  • Happy Definition (HD) Lexan lens
  • Rise+ ventilation system
  • 45mm roll-off system
  • Triple-layer Isotron face foam
  • Outrigger strap connection
  • 45mm strap
  • MSRP: $95 - $110

You can see Jeremy McGrath's new logo in the center and signature in the right corner.

First Impression

MC is the man, and his new logo, featured on his version of the Foundation goggle is pretty cool. Also, the black and sparkly-gold color combo is clean and matches any gear. Looks-wise, you can say I’m a fan. Also, while other goggles like the Oakley Airbrake and Scott Prospect have a distinctive lens shape, the Foundation has a classic, clean overall appearance. On the downside, it doesn’t really look like anything special, or that it has any unique features going on. Having the widest field of vision isn’t noticeable when looking at the goggles from the outside.

On The Track

Field of View

At the intro, I talked to McGrath about the goggle and he said the first time he put them on, he felt like he wasn’t wearing any goggles because his vision was so unobstructed. While he has a vested interest in promoting the Foundation goggle, I do believe he was genuinely impressed. He also said that he hadn’t worn any other brand of goggle so he couldn’t compare them to other large-field-of-view goggles on the market.

Fortunately I’m free of contractual obligations and can wear whatever goggles I feel like. When focusing on the field of view, we are talking about marginal gains. Yeah, back when the Oakley Airbrake first came out, it was a bigger deal because it was one of the first goggles to go to a large-frame format. Now, most goggles are getting bigger and we’ve become accustomed to seeing more of the track and less of the frames.

The top goggle is SPY's Omen Goggle for size reference. You can see that the Foundation, lower goggle, is much bigger.

Not that I’m trying to take anything away from the Foundation, which does have a massive field of view, just that, if you already have a larger goggle, this won’t be a life changing experience. When comparing the field of view to the Airbrake, I do notice less of the Foundation frame in the very edge of my vision. Top to bottom it is about the same with maybe a slight edge to the SPY Foundation. Actually, trying them on back to back with the Airbrake, I now notice how much of the Airbrake’s outriggers I can see, where I don’t on the Foundation. Comparing it to SPY’s previous top-level goggle, the Omen, there is a pretty big difference. The Omen goggle is pretty standard in size and, when paying attention to how much of the frame is in my view, I can definitely notice the sides and bottom edge of the goggle more than with the Foundation.

A comparison of the new Foundation lens (top) and the Omen lens (bottom).

All of this being said, it’s really about small improvements. For the average rider on the track, this won’t make much of a difference unless you are extremely sensitive to peripheral visual distractions.

Ventilation

This is where the RISE+ Ventilation System comes in and is supposed to be what really sets this goggle apart from the rest. Without being too cynical, I’m not blown away by the ventilation of the Foundation goggle. Not that it doesn’t vent well or that it is any hotter than other goggles, it’s just that it doesn’t seem to vent any better than other goggles. I was expecting some sort of measurable air flow in the goggles since SPY talks about the venturi effect and low pressure zones and all that science-y stuff, but what I noticed was a goggle that vented about the same as most other goggles. Now, SPY could say that this is exactly what it is meant to do because, with such a large frame, without the RISE+ system, the goggle wouldn’t vent much at all because of the amount of space it takes up in the goggle port, and they could be right. Either way, the goggle’s ventilation is adequate.

The shape of the upper lip of the frame is what Spy claims gives the goggle its venturi effect.
Plenty of space for air to circulate.

Clarity

This isn’t something that we have to worry about much with modern lens technology, but with such a large lens that has to curve quite a bit to wrap all the way around your face, fellow staffer Michael Lindsay did bring up a concern about optical distortion at the outer edges of the goggle. Just putting on the goggle, he said he noticed some distortion. But he After riding and focusing on the outer edges, there was no discernable distortion that I could see, and, not to brag but for reference, I have better than 20/20 vision.

Also, the lens that comes on the MC version of the Foundation is what SPY calls their Happy Lens, which is technology pulled from their sunglasses. It has a good amount of tint to knock down the brightness of a sunny day, but also has special contrast- and color-enhancing properties. This does help you better delineate the different dirt conditions by making it easier to see wet versus dry, depth of ruts, shadows, etc.

Foam

One of the more impressive features of the Foundation goggle is the foam. SPY calls it Triple-layer Isotron face foam with Dri-force fleece, but I just say it works. It is soft and thick enough to both give a comfortable, effective face seal and absorb a lot of sweat without dripping it back into your eyes. I’m sure there is a limit to how much liquid it can hold but without putting in marathon motos, I haven’t found that limit yet.

As far as face conformity goes, the chassis of the goggle is the more typical flexible style with a flexible Lexan lens, which means that, along with the foam, offers a good fit on the face. I still prefer the rigid design of the Airbrakes as far as fit goes because I feel like the Oakleys don’t press on the bridge of my nose as much and that the pressure is evenly distributed over my face. With the Foundation, the pressure is pretty well distributed but there is more pressure on my nose than with a rigid framed goggle.

Fit

Yes they do. I’ve tried them with a Shoei VFX-EVO, Arai VX-Pro4, Bell Moto-9, Troy Lee Designs SE4, 6D ART-1, and Fox V3 - the Foundation goggle fits in all of these motocross helmets without a problem. The outriggers do a good job of setting the goggle deeper into the eyeport to get solid contact with your face. Also, the 45mm strap is pretty big and at first I thought, “Why does this need to be bigger, goggles don’t slip off.” But, thinking about durability, some of my older Airbrakes with thinner straps are starting to wear out and this thicker strap should fair much better.

The Last Word

Overall, I’m impressed and happy with this goggle, but it isn’t as cutting edge as some other goggles on the market. I really like that it has a huge field of view, isn’t any less vented than other goggles, has a classic style, the Happy Lens is the perfect balance of tint and color definition. and is very comfortable. On top of that, the super wide strap isn’t going to stretch out as easy as some of the thinner straps do. But, factoring in the price, there are other goggles on the market that have rigid lenses and other lens systems that, depending on your priorities, might offer better bang for the buck. I’m not saying that rigid lenses are inherently better, just that they are sort of the next step in goggle technology.


Specifications

Product Spy Foundation+ Goggle
Type Goggles
Features - The widest peripheral view on the market
- HD Lexan lens provides sharper and more accurate vision in all lighting conditions while reducing distortion in the peripheral areas
- Extra-wide 45mm silicone-ribbed strap stops goggle slipping and shifting on whoops, jumps, and rhythm sections
- RISE + ventilation system utilizes the Venturi effect to draw air through subframe vents above the goggle and in-between your helmet, creating a vacuum that pulls hot air from behind the lens
- 45mm roll-off system available
- Triple-layer Isotron face foam with moisture-wicking Dri-Force fleece is facially contoured to provide a comfortable, dry seal that lasts so long it makes other goggles jealous
- Spoiler-style outriggers keep tear-offs lying flat while providing a tight and secure fit to the face
- Foundation Plus comes with an installed Spectra lens and bonus clear lens with posts
- Includes a removable nose guard and 10-pack of tear-offs
Construction Polyurethane fram, Lexan lens, Triple-layer Isotron foam
Colors Classic Orange, Jeremy McGrath, Black, Revolution
Miscellaneous Let's put the rumors to rest.

Motorsports has been a big part of SPY for 25 years. To prove the point, we'd like to introduce the Foundation, the newest badass addition to our MX goggle line. Developed in collaboration with our top athletes, the Foundation doubles down on our commitment to off-road motorsports with the widest view of any moto goggle. We're here for the duration, so enjoy the f@$king ride.
Price $110
More Info

www.spyoptic.com

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