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Old February 9th, 2012, 07:24 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Otterbox Defender: 1 year review.

So I figure something like this is worth a past-tense review of sorts.
I replaced my Defender today, and I'm not totally happy with or without it.
When I was researching cases after just buying my Evo 4G I was left with questions, and in fact just over-paid for this case at the Sprint store partly because I could at least fondle it. I'll follow this up sorta with a just-bought review if it's replacement.
Anyway, for what it's worth..

Bad:

The clip thingy that holds the belt clip in the open position broke real early on. I don't know why it was even there, I've never seen the like on any clip'd device, and I have a bunch of them.

The kickstand broke early on, and I never use it, I finally took it off.
The up side is it's very easy and quick to replace it if one really wanted to make use of the thing.

Toward the end of it's life, the rubber skin started catching on the little friction clip that holds it in the holster. Prior to this it was a silky smooth motion to holster/un-holster the phone which I appreciate greatly. No need to look down. Now, about 3/4 of the time it takes much care to re-holster without the clip peeling the rubber case off.
I'm not sure if this is a case stretching issue or what really, and I could have glue'd the thing on in that one spot I guess, but it's there.

The built in screen protector held up pretty good in my opinion, but a year of warehouse, field and shop use and it's fairly scratched up. I also notice it is dramatically more subject to smudging and such now.

The rubber cover where it fits into a slot on the front around the perimeter of the screen has always been a little touchy, and has become more so with age. It isn't bad, but it's not perfect.

Upsides:

It has a built in screen protector. My replacement does not, I both do not like having to apply the little screen protector, and the fact that the screen is NOT sealed to the case. I can't imagine this isn't going to let in a bunch of dust and grit. While the Defender does let in some, it's not really objectionable. My Evo looks brand spanking new with the case off after over a year or hard daily use.

It has a cover over the flash and camera lens, which my replacement does not.

The belt clip is very secure and fits my just under 2" instructors belt perfectly with no slop. The rotation adjustment click increments are tight and it's nice to rotate it out of the way at times.

None of the port plugs have torn at all and all fit tight and are easy to open. The buttons all still press easily with good feedback. It locks in the holster tightly with no need for a funny latch, but easily releases.

In short it just works, replace it every 8 months with hard use, or 12 if you are sentimental, and it's great. I wish to hell they made one to fit an extended battery, I'd own it.

I replaced it with a Seidio Convert/Extended/SuperSomething that I can't even figure out the damn name of still, but it's the little sleeve thing, the rubber cover, and the black plastic cover thingy. I'll review this later.

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Old June 12th, 2012, 09:49 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wolf_walker View Post
So I figure something like this is worth a past-tense review of sorts.
I replaced my Defender today, and I'm not totally happy with or without it.
When I was researching cases after just buying my Evo 4G I was left with questions, and in fact just over-paid for this case at the Sprint store partly because I could at least fondle it. I'll follow this up sorta with a just-bought review if it's replacement.
Anyway, for what it's worth..

Bad:

The clip thingy that holds the belt clip in the open position broke real early on. I don't know why it was even there, I've never seen the like on any clip'd device, and I have a bunch of them.

The kickstand broke early on, and I never use it, I finally took it off.
The up side is it's very easy and quick to replace it if one really wanted to make use of the thing.

Toward the end of it's life, the rubber skin started catching on the little friction clip that holds it in the holster. Prior to this it was a silky smooth motion to holster/un-holster the phone which I appreciate greatly. No need to look down. Now, about 3/4 of the time it takes much care to re-holster without the clip peeling the rubber case off.
I'm not sure if this is a case stretching issue or what really, and I could have glue'd the thing on in that one spot I guess, but it's there.

The built in screen protector held up pretty good in my opinion, but a year of warehouse, field and shop use and it's fairly scratched up. I also notice it is dramatically more subject to smudging and such now.

The rubber cover where it fits into a slot on the front around the perimeter of the screen has always been a little touchy, and has become more so with age. It isn't bad, but it's not perfect.

Upsides:

It has a built in screen protector. My replacement does not, I both do not like having to apply the little screen protector, and the fact that the screen is NOT sealed to the case. I can't imagine this isn't going to let in a bunch of dust and grit. While the Defender does let in some, it's not really objectionable. My Evo looks brand spanking new with the case off after over a year or hard daily use.

It has a cover over the flash and camera lens, which my replacement does not.

The belt clip is very secure and fits my just under 2" instructors belt perfectly with no slop. The rotation adjustment click increments are tight and it's nice to rotate it out of the way at times.

None of the port plugs have torn at all and all fit tight and are easy to open. The buttons all still press easily with good feedback. It locks in the holster tightly with no need for a funny latch, but easily releases.

In short it just works, replace it every 8 months with hard use, or 12 if you are sentimental, and it's great. I wish to hell they made one to fit an extended battery, I'd own it.

I replaced it with a Seidio Convert/Extended/SuperSomething that I can't even figure out the damn name of still, but it's the little sleeve thing, the rubber cover, and the black plastic cover thingy. I'll review this later.
This may come late for you, but not sure. I bought my original Otterbox Defender case on Newegg, not from the Sprint Store, because it was about $15 cheaper to do so.

Like you, both my kickstand and the belt clip broke! Not once, but twice!
I'm on my third Defender case.
The VERY good news? If you contact Otterbox on their site, and let them know about it, they'll replace it at no charge!

I'd call them and let them know!
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