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Bi-focal glasses (progressive)



 
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UsedBits
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Joined: 13 Nov 2001
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 27, 2006 12:21 pm    Post subject: Bi-focal glasses (progressive) Reply with quote

I've just gotten bi-focal glasses and opted for the progressive (no line) grind. It is only the 2nd day with them but it seems that it will be a very long adjustment period.

Does anyone have experience using progressive bi-focal glasses with respect to reading music?

I'm near sighted, but not badly. 20/40 in right eye, 20/70 in left. Correctable to 20/12.

It turns out that the normal distance between my eyes and my computer screen is just about right for needing no correction. But I can't seem to find the 'neutral' zone on my new lenses and I'm tempted to just take them off when working on my computer.

Any experiences you're willing to share here?

Regards,
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lh
Claude Gordon Forum Moderator


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 27, 2006 12:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi UsedBits,

I have the same kind of glasses issues, but with a left eye astigmatism.

Music reading and having the bell of the trumpet in a normal playing position was greatly improved for me since I switched to an 8-10 degree bent mouthpiece. It keeps my head/neck position correct, keeps the bell up, and keeps me looking out the right part of the bifocals to see the music clearly at music stand distance.

I use mine in a big band setting, but could be used comfortably in any larger ensemble setting.

Regards
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TimCBrown
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 27, 2006 1:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've got progressive lenses. I'm severely near-sighted. The only thing I can read without correction is something about 3 inches from my eyes. The middle area of my bifocals is just right for the computer screen. However, the music stand is farther away than the computer screen (especially at gigs). If I use my bifocals, I need to look through the top part of the lenses, so I'm basically pointing the trumet below the music stand. Furthermore, I've got no peripheral vision with the progressives, so I 've got problems if I'm not right in front of the stand.

I ended up getting a separate pair of glasses that I use only while playing. I keep them in my trumpet case. These lenses work for one (and only one) distance - the distance between my eyes and the music on the stand. This way, I can keep the posture I want while I'm playing and still see the music. I've also got enough peripheral vision that it's no big deal if I have to stand to the side of the music stand.

The only problem is that I often forget to switch back to my non-music glasses after a rehearsal or gig is over. It's a real adventure driving down the highway with everything out of focus.

- Tim
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Dale Proctor
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 27, 2006 8:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I tried progressive lenses, and they're now in my dresser drawer. I knew there would be an adjustment period, and was told I had to look directly at what I wanted in focus. Problem is, the area of focus is small, and my trumpet bell is directly in front of my face! Turn the bell (and your face slightly to the side or downward) and look past it at the music, and guess what - your eyes aren't looking through the center of the lens anymore, and the music is WAY out of focus. The solution, as Tim said, is two pairs of glasses.
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plankowner110
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 27, 2006 9:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I got my first pair of progressive bifocals about five years ago and didn't give myself enough time to become accustomed to them. I went back and got a regular pair of bifocals. Don't do what I did! Stay with them and you WILL get used to them.

I am now on my second pair of progressive lens eyeglasses and I love them for everyday use. There is no line to interupt my vision or make me look older than I am! I would never go back to regular bifocals.

It is true that there is a narrow "spot" where music on a stand will fall into perfect focus. Also as you move your head from side to side, the music will blur. So, to solve this I have a second pair of music glasses. They are traditional bifocals with a raised line, with the bottom 2/3 of the lens set for reading music at 34 inches from my eye, and the top 1/3 of the lens set to see a conductor at a distance. The line goes straight across the entire lens. These glasses give me a wide field of vision for looking at music and a sharp view of a conductor.

My first pair of music glasses had a single focal length for reading music on the stand, but it was hard to see a conductor (or cute gals in the audience!) clearly. My current pair of music glasses solved that problem as described in the above paragraph.

Keep wearing the progressive bifocals everyday and in a week's time you won't give them any thought. It just takes a little time to adapt to something new, and better! If you get a pair of music reading glasses, explain your needs and ask the optometrist to make lenses with the raised bifocal.
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Norm
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 27, 2006 10:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have trifocals. The middle section works o.k., kind of, for computer and music stand distance, but my head has to stay in a rather limited position, which is a literal pain in the neck. Like Tim, I obtained glasses (one set) which work for both "computer" and "music stand" distance. Works great.

Norm
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Dave Mickley
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 28, 2006 4:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have used progressives for about 10 yr. and for me I can not use them while playing. I have a pair of "music" glasses that I keep in my case that are single vision set for music reading. Don't try to play golf or ping pong with bi-focals, it just doesn't work. Dave
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Yoder
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 28, 2006 4:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have worn progressives for over ten years. Once you get used to them, then there are no problems with reading music or what have you. The only problem is if I lay on my back on the floor and try to watch TV--that is when the specs come off.
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Leedorham
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 28, 2006 9:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

lh wrote:

Music reading and having the bell of the trumpet in a normal playing position was greatly improved for me since I switched to an 8-10 degree bent mouthpiece. It keeps my head/neck position correct, keeps the bell up, and keeps me looking out the right part of the bifocals to see the music clearly at music stand distance.

I use mine in a big band setting, but could be used comfortably in any larger ensemble setting.
Regards


Where did you get a bent mouthpiece? Did you have to have one bent aftermarket or did you buy it that way? I play "upstream" so I have been toying with the idea of using a bent mouthpiece to get the horn below the stand in an orchestral setting. I also have problems with seeing the conductor through my glasses in an orchestra. I can't imagine how bad it's gonna be if/when I have to get bifocals.
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lh
Claude Gordon Forum Moderator


Joined: 31 Mar 2005
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 29, 2006 1:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Leedorham,

Most reputable brass techs can bend a mouthpiece for you. What you want to avoid is the guy who jams it in a vise, smacks it around with a mallet, and says "that looks about right". I wouldn't bring in your own favorite to be bent, though. Rather, I'd have them bend a new one instead.

You're better off paying a bit more to get someone who will insert a rod through the mouthpiece throat and bend it while it's in, so the throat doesn't distort. Depending on the mouthpiece, the tech may have to remove material in the area of the bend +/or apply heat to give you a correct and stable bend. Since I use Warburtons, I bought a new backbore and had them bend it before I paid for the throat itself, just in case it went badly.

I think you may like how a bent mouthpiece can improve your playing/seeing geometry.

Regards
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trombapaul2
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 29, 2006 2:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I should look into glasses bit I'm firmly in denial and will remain there until I
start walking into walls or womens rest rooms!!

blind-in-one-eye-Paul
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Uberopa
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 29, 2006 2:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi All,

The scientific test for when you need to start using progressives is when you take the newspaper into the john and read it placed on the floor because your arms are too short.

Brian
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