Posts tagged: case

Are Knockoff Bumper Cases Any Good?

By , April 30, 2013 9:47 am

When I got my iPhone, the first case I got was a bumper case from Apple. It served me well, but I was never able to resolve the $30 price for a piece of plastic that simply wrapped around the phone. I was very impressed with the quality and build of the case. If you perused my blog at all, you’ll realize that I have tried all manner of cases – TPU, metal, leather, 2 piece plastic, clip on, or simply a skin. Despite all these options, I hankered for the simplicity of a bumper case, but I wasn’t going to pay $30. Besides, a new iPhone is coming this year (right?) so I’ll be changing again anyway.

Then one day I was browsing Amazon and I cam across this item.   . You got to be kidding, a $2 case with great reviews and the shipping was free. What have I got to lose – well, except for $2? So I ordered it.

Apple bumper case?

Great packaging. This looks exactly the same as the one in the Apple Store!

The first thing I noticed when it arrived was that it was even packaged like the cases in the Apple Store. No cheap plastic bag in a non-descript case, but vacuum formed plastic bonded to a glassy paper base. I mean, you can’t even make that packaging for $2.

A quick inspection of the case itself showed that it had metal buttons and the grayish plastic just like the original. If this is a knock off, it’s a really good one.

OK, enough package inspection and commentary. Let’s open this up and see if its build and fit is as good as it is packaged. I’ve had good looking cases that didn’t fit so well.


After I opened this up and closely inspected it, I noticed a spot where the molding lines were not completely smooth. I also wondered if the gray rubber surround would pick up the color of my jeans like some other cheap plastic cases in the past.  Putting the case on the phone, I was nicely surprised by how snug it fit and that all the opening and buttons were aligned perfectly. Here’s a closeup of the case before I put it on my phone.

3/4 view of the knock off iPhone bumper case.

3/4 view of the knock off iPhone bumper case.

Fast forward 1 week. I’ve been using this case for the better part of a week now and I am beginning to wonder if this isn’t actually a Apple iPhone bumper case made by the same manufacturer that created them for Apple. The rubber hasn’t picked up any residue, the fit hasn’t changed and the protection that it affords my phone if wonderful. A part of me wonders if they are just liquidating these since a new iPhone is imminent and these will become the “old model” in the near future. If you were to judge by the build and quality of the case, you’d never know it wasn’t from the Apple store.

So in summary, if you are in need of a super inexpensive case for your iPhone 4/4S and you like the minimalist look of the bumper case, you can’t go wrong with this. It’s the best $2 case I’ve ever seen. Shipping is even free. I’m still shaking my head that they can create and package something like this for such a low cost.


Another Bumper Case Fail

By , October 15, 2011 9:01 pm

I am on the endless search for the perfect case for my iPhone 4. I have decided that I like the most minimal case possible and I do not want to spoil the nice white color. I’ve tried the official Apple bumper case, which is quite nice except that I had to dremel out the bottom to fit an aftermarket connector.

Several months ago I found a unique case from the folks at Cygnett. It was clear around the edges and had a white rubber at the edges. It looked pretty unique so I got it for my phone. At first I really liked the way it made the phone look. It also felt pretty good as it didn’t make the svelte iPhone too chunky. I thought I had found the perfect case.

Fast forward 4 months. The white was turning blue from my jeans I guess. I normally keep my phone in my front pockets so it’s going in and out of my jeans constantly. I tried bleaching the plastic, but alas, it appears that the dye had become seeped into the plastic. Oh well, I thought. Even if it’s tinted, it still works well.

Then the unthinkable happened. The case started to come apart. The while part and the clear part is separating. Here’s a picture of it so you can see what I mean.

The white and the clear don't like each other.

I recall that the case had a warranty of a year and it hasn’t been that long. So I head over to the Cygnett website to file my claim and things got weird. When I get to the claim page and try to file a claim, all I get is a dialog that says “DEATH KINGS”. Seriously! Click on the email, pdf, or print link from that claims page and a dialog will appear that says “DEATH KINGS” and that’s it. Nothing else to do.

How annoying is this? I guess I’ll try and superglue the thing together, but I am not hopeful. Maybe after a few weeks I’ll get an iPhone4S and then go shop for another case. Sigh, I had such high hopes for this case. The search continues. If you have a especially great case for your iPhone, leave a comment in the post below. I’d appreciate the guidance. Thanks.

Hardcase for Macbook Pro

By , September 8, 2011 9:46 am

As some of you know, I am now running a Macbook Pro with Windows 7 using VMWare Fusion. (That sentence made my brain hurt). It’s been really a pretty nice experience with all the slick goodness of a Mac and the utility of the Windows programs I know and love.

Now the sleek aluminum case of the Mac had to be protected. I looked all around at Best Buy and Fry’s and they all wanted $49.99 for a hardcase shell in rather loud colors. I really didn’t want to change the look of the Mac. I like the cool case. Amazon to the rescue.

A quick search yielded a product from iPearl for only $17.99. I was very skeptical. It’s from an unknown company and it’s less than 1/2 the price of similar products. Always willing to give it a go, I ordered it anyway. Besides Amazon is great about returns if you are not happy. Within 2 days (I’m a Prime member) the shell arrived at my doorstep.

iPearl hardcase for Mac was very nicely packaged and fit wonderfully.

I installed it easily enough by snapping it on the case. The fit is very snug and it’s even got little nubs on the inside in key areas so that the case doesn’t rub on the aluminum and leave marks. It’s really quite remarkable how well it fits. All of the ports are accessible and it doesn’t detract from the looks of the computer at all. This is exactly what I wanted. The only questionable thing in a feature that allows the laptop to tilt. There are two plastic retractable legs on the back. They appear to be made of plastic, but appears kind of delicate to me. I don’t use them often, but when I do I am afraid it might snap off.

I’ll post a followup after a few weeks to let you know how it’s doing. So far (about a week now) I have been really happy and delighted with the performance and protection it provides. For $17.99 it’s a great deal. OK, back to my Windows 7 Hackintosh. 🙂


The Merry Go round begins anew

By , September 26, 2010 8:48 pm

So I finally broke down and got an iPhone4. It’s a really nice unit, but I lost all my nice un-Apple approved applications. Somehow, I’ve found that I really didn’t need all those extra items. I’ve been able to find replacements for most items except for the hotspot application.
However, a new problem arises. It’s time for a case. Yeah, after all the time and money that I have spent on cases for my 3GS, I find myself starting over again. So what to get? There were a few criteria. One – I didn’t want a huge aberration of a case that spoiled the nice design. Two – I really wanted a white iPhone, but its been reported that they are not going to be out for a while. What’s a guy to do.

For the first item, I decided to take advantage of the free case program from Apple. Most of the free cases my friends got were the huge aberrations that I mentioned above. They just about doubled the thickness of the phone. The cleanest thing I could find was the bumper case from Apple. A very nicely made and ridiculously overpriced piece of plastic. However, this was going to be free, so I went for it. The downside? The bumper case doesn’t protect the front or back glass. I’d need something else for that.

Then I came across a curious thing. You may recall that I got a nice “Leather” look skin for my laptop. Well, the same folks made skins for the iPhone4. They even had one in white! Yea, you know where this is going.

The SGP iPhone4 skin kit

Easy to put on. Leaves no residue.

Look, I have a white iPhone4 - sorta.

So there you have it. I have a white iPhone4 now. It only cost me $17.99 + shipping.

I am sure as time goes by, my case obsession will run rampant again. For now, this combination is good and it has already saved me 2 times as I dropped my phone. Let’s see how long it takes before I see something cooler.

No Love for White iPhone cases

By , July 22, 2010 10:13 pm

My search for the proper iPhone case continues. I thought my previous TPU case was such a great deal and I was loving it….until it started to pick up the blue from my jeans and the yellow from daily use. The case now looks kinda nasty and is clearly not as white as the iPhone case itself.

I saw the case below at a Radio Shack and thought I would give it a try. It was a little different in that it was a hybrid clear and TPU. That sounded a bit more promising. My previous clear case scratched and cracked not long after I got it. This was a translucent and the TPU on the edge seemed of higher quality.

Another case to try. This one is a hybrid.

Once again the fit was excellent and I thought I might have another chance at case nirvanna.

Fit is great, but how would it hold up?

Well, a month went by and I am on another case already. Why? Well, the white surround is yellowing. The clear parts are intact, but the cutout for the logo still bothers me. Why leave that open to damage? Who would have thought it was so darn hard to find a decent case?

In fact, I am already on another case. This one from Speck. I have heard great things about them so I thought I would give them a try. I’ll report back after I have had some time with it.

In reality, my problems may be moot as I think I am going to move up (depending on what you think) to an iPhone 4 soon.  I’ll pass this phone down to someone and they’ll get a boatload of cases with it for fun.

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