Otter Box Armor Series case for iPhone (waterproof)

Paddling gear and boat review
Post Reply
       
User avatar
Cowper
.....
.....
Posts: 2420
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2005 10:39 am
Name: Cowper C
Location: Conway, AR
Contact:

Otter Box Armor Series case for iPhone (waterproof)

Post by Cowper » Thu Jan 09, 2014 9:14 pm

When I first got my iPhone 5, the only fully waterproof case available was the LifeProof case. I got one, which served me well for over a year. Debbie also got one for her phone at about the same time. This is an update on our experience, along with a "first impressions" review of the Otter Box case I bought to replace it.

First, Debbie's experience: Almost from the very start, her case did not fully satisfy. She used it long enough that we no longer felt right about returning it, but she would get "buzzing" sounds when talking, folks would have trouble understanding her, and so on. It was especially bad if she was talking to me - it was as if whatever was happening set up a much worse "feedback" loop when she talked to me on the phone, with the two Lifeproof cases somehow making it much worse than if only one phone was in the case. At my end, I had trouble communicating with Debbie, but anyone else I talked to, everything seemed fine. She put up with it for awhile, then bought a non-waterproof low end case that gave a little "bump" protection but nothing more. I stuck with the Lifeproof case. (Yes, we removed the phone, tried reinstalling it again, pressed around to change pressure points and fit, etc. We could get temporary improvements but nothing that lasted unless you were wiling to squeeze pressure points with a bear grip while talking...)

My case performed much better until recently. It was never really challenged from a waterproofness viewpoint; it was like buying the case was all it took to insure I never again dropped the phone in the water. Doesn't it always work that way? But then, for about the last 2 or 3 months, I have been having increasing problems with echoes and people being unable to understand what I was saying. Also, more and more of my photos were turning up foggy, although that could have been due to my increasing use of the phone on the river, during cooler weather. I never tried to "fix" that issue since the degradation in the sound quality was enough to send me looking for a new option.

On a recommendation from Bryan Hughbanks, I got a new Otter Box "Armor" series case. Do not be fooled; Otter box has other cases for the iPhone that are great cases, but that do not claim to be waterproof. This one is. Here are some of my first impressions:

1) It's bigger, thicker, and heavier than the previous case. Because of that, I feel certain it provides more protection; the specs say it is rated for a drop from 10 feet and waterproof to 6.6 feet for 30 minutes. I lose some of the "slim profile" which the iPhone uses as a major selling point, but to me it is worth it for the extra level of protection.

2) The sound quality problems disappeared immediately. Will they stay gone? Time will tell.

3) The price is right. Amazon Prime (free shipping) had it ranging from $41 to $59 depending on your color choice (retail is about $100). IMHO, this dirt cheap for this level of protection.

4) Another issue I had was that the previous case seemed to cause some loss of sensitivity with the touch screen. Lot's of mistyped letters; phone calls wouldn't always end when I pushed the "End" button, that sort of thing. Like the sound quality issues, those problems disappeared as soon as I put the phone in the new Otter Box case.

If I experience future problems, I'll come back and update this review, but given the bargain prices you can find on this case, there is really no reason to wait if you're in the market. If I have to buy a new one each year to restore the "like new" performance, I will. At this time, they have models for the iphone 5, the iPhone 4/4s, and the Galaxy S3. I assume that my findings would be pretty similar for the other cases in this same series.
Trash: Get a little every time you go!

ak48z
.
.
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed Oct 09, 2013 12:45 am
Name: Austin

Re: Otter Box Armor Series case for iPhone (waterproof)

Post by ak48z » Fri Jan 10, 2014 5:34 pm

Just to add a bit more feedback.

I too bought the lifeproof case when the Iphone 5 first came out.

I had the same issues with the screen not being as responsive with ending calls, some texts, etc.

The plastic screen in my case eventually failed. The glue holding it to the rest of the case gave out and the corners started popping off. Obviously no longer waterproof but I am sure it could take a beating still. Eventually I just took the case off and have been more careful with it.

User avatar
tomOzarkVideo
.....
.....
Posts: 842
Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2011 11:11 am
Name: Tom McFetridge
Location: Springdale

Re: Otter Box Armor Series case for iPhone (waterproof)

Post by tomOzarkVideo » Sat Jan 11, 2014 7:24 am

I'm loving the Armor so far. I only use it for paddling.

I keep it in the clamshell pocket in my pfd.
So far, it has survived a swim on the chattahoochie at 6000cfs including a long assisted ferry to recover my boat.. :oops: and several practice rolls.
"My favorite rapid was Boogie Water" - kru

User avatar
Regud
NW AR Chapter President
Posts: 1052
Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2008 7:26 pm
Name: Ryan Dugger
Location: Fayetteville

Re: Otter Box Armor Series case for iPhone (waterproof)

Post by Regud » Sat Jan 11, 2014 8:13 am

And another reason for the Otter Box....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4BgeXbdEw0w
- Ryan

"Confess your Swims!"

User avatar
Mike_P
...
...
Posts: 349
Joined: Thu May 11, 2006 9:41 pm
Name: Mike Potts
Location: Northwest Arkansas

Re: Otter Box Armor Series case for iPhone (waterproof)

Post by Mike_P » Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:47 am

I only use cases like that when paddling. Is it easy to slip the phone in and out of that case on the fly? Nice ad video...love the Ford Explorer, too... my current shuttle vehicle :thumbup:

User avatar
tomOzarkVideo
.....
.....
Posts: 842
Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2011 11:11 am
Name: Tom McFetridge
Location: Springdale

Re: Otter Box Armor Series case for iPhone (waterproof)

Post by tomOzarkVideo » Wed Jan 15, 2014 6:08 am

It pops in the case in about 5 seconds. Another must have feature for me.
"My favorite rapid was Boogie Water" - kru

HumTum
.
.
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Mar 06, 2015 10:39 pm
Name: arslan

Re: Otter Box Armor Series case for iPhone (waterproof)

Post by HumTum » Fri Mar 06, 2015 10:40 pm

My case performed much better until recently. It was never really challenged from a waterproofness viewpoint; it was like buying the case was all it took to insure I never again dropped the phone in the water. Doesn't it always work that way? But then, for about the last 2 or 3 months, I have been having increasing problems with echoes and people being unable to understand what I was saying. Also, more and more of my photos were turning up foggy, although that could have been due to my increasing use of the phone on the river, during cooler weather. I never tried to "fix" that issue since the degradation in the sound quality was enough to send me looking for a new option.
:confused:
Arslan1

User avatar
okieboater
.....
.....
Posts: 1944
Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2005 9:21 pm
Name: David L. Reid
Location: Jenks, Oklahoma

Re: Otter Box Armor Series case for iPhone (waterproof)

Post by okieboater » Sat Mar 07, 2015 8:45 am

Another vote for otterbox

After a lot of online research, I got the strongest water resistant case Otterbox offers for my phone.

Doubt if I will ever test it on purpose but so far it looks bomber.
Okieboater AKA Dave Reid

We are not sure when childhood ends and adulthood begins.

We are sure that when retirement begins, childhood restarts

User avatar
Cowper
.....
.....
Posts: 2420
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2005 10:39 am
Name: Cowper C
Location: Conway, AR
Contact:

Re: Otter Box Armor Series case for iPhone (waterproof)

Post by Cowper » Sat Mar 14, 2015 6:21 am

I guess I need to update this review. Like someone said, I bought the case mostly for "insurance", in case of a drop, but wanted "waterproof" too. Generally I did nothing more than use the phone in the rain occasionally.

But more than a year after the purchase, I was hiking in an area were I had to swim across a short pool. The case was in my chest pocket; so the phone was maybe 1 foot underwater for less than a minute; two or three water crossings. It leaked. Phone died. Phone revived with rice trick, lived a few days, then died again for good. Fried it, total loss.

My belief now is that for all these cases, the daily opening and closing of the charging point almost guarantees that they will be waterproof only when new. Or at least, maybe that is what you should assume unless you have good insurance on the phone, and are willing to go through the hassle of replacement.
Trash: Get a little every time you go!

User avatar
okieboater
.....
.....
Posts: 1944
Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2005 9:21 pm
Name: David L. Reid
Location: Jenks, Oklahoma

Re: Otter Box Armor Series case for iPhone (waterproof)

Post by okieboater » Sat Mar 14, 2015 2:45 pm

I have not had my "waterproof" samsung in a "waterproof" otterbox under water and hope I never do. Maybe splash proof is a better descriptive term for these devices.

My experience has been the term Waterproof is more of an advertising term than what to expect from the gizmo.

No matter what the gizmo IE tents, boots, jackets, what ever. :crossed:
Okieboater AKA Dave Reid

We are not sure when childhood ends and adulthood begins.

We are sure that when retirement begins, childhood restarts

Post Reply

Social Media

       

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest