For years, spectacle lenses have been made by taking a stock lens for your main prescription off the shelf, and grinding the rear side to customise it.

Most of our lenses at Pagan and McQuade nowadays are made using 'digital' methods but it's still a new development and the benefits are only now being realised by many. Your next quality lenses are likely to be made this way.

Digital lenses are manufactured by translating your prescription into thousands of precision cuts at 'pixel' positions on the lens surface. A special coating then makes it smooth.

So what?

Four things:

1) When you take your eye test and get your prescription, you're looking straight ahead. In the real world, when you look to the side (for instance, when reversing your car or playing sport), your eye changes angle and requires a different prescription. Digital lenses compensate for that and give you the correct prescription across the whole lens so you get sharpness and clarity wherever you look.

2) Most people's eyes are not round, but rugby ball shaped. This means the prescription up and down may be different to what's needed side to side. Again, it's a bit technical, but lens manufacturers with the new digital manufacturing capability can extract more from your prescription and give you spectacle lenses that compensate. Looking has never felt so comfortable.

3) Years ago it took practice to walk safely while wearing old style varifocals. Modern, digital varifocals minimise swim effects and optimise usability, so you get the prescription you need where you need it across the whole lens.

4) Opticians used to have to correct both eyes individually. With digital spectacle lenses, we can optimise your eyes as a pair, so they work as a team as nature intended.

Wearing spectacles is a new experience today. Maybe it's time to upgrade your specs.