Sunday, December 8, 2013
Review: Strike Industries - SHOX iPhone 5 case
It's no great secret that I am a big phone freak. Since writing this blog, I've covered my iPhone 4S cases, namely the OPT silicone-armor case, a Maxpedition iPhone pouch, the feature rich Snow Llizard-SLXtreme "ruggedized" case, the hunter-friendly Griffin "mossy-oak" Survivor case as well as my most recent addition, the Strike Industries Battle-case (on top in this picture).
When Strike industries sent me the 4S compatible Battle Case, they also kindly sent me their newest, 5/5S compatible case, the Battle Case Shox and accessory pack!
The most exciting part about the SHOX case, apart from having the same grippy, textured thermoplastic polyurethane material, is that the SHOX has built in shock absorbing springs built into the corners! Beveled lips hold the phone snugly in place, and keep the sides dust free.
The springs add a certain bulk to the corners of the phone, which I have found to be quite an exceptional addition, as it means that the speakers are off-set, and when held, are not blocked by the edge or heel of my palm. A built in sound reflector adds to that, without expanding the dimensions further. They also add a nub to grip on, increasing the retention capabilities of this case. Power and volume buttons are permanently protected, but accessible through the case.
The lines of those spring bumpers are combined with the finger loop, which as in the original Battle Case, provide a tremendous advantage for drawing the phone from a pocket or pouch, as well as retaining it in the hand, by carabiner or lanyard. Unlike the Original Battle Case, this loop is at the "top" rather than the "bottom" of the phone.
This case lacks the honeycomb macro-texture of the original, but instead features ridges, as well as bevels around an internal storage area, large enough to fit a couple of credit card sized objects.
These are accessible via a slot on the side, and visible through a window in the middle of the case. Both the window and the opening slot act as heat vents, I've found, especially useful when the phone is dash-mounted in my vehicle. The camera opening is wide enough to accommodate all the sensors and flash easily, reducing back-scatter considerably.
Looking inside the case you can see that it has additional internal structure to add to the padding and protection that the semi-rigid polyurethane offers. I have also been using the clear plastic camera guard, which is included in the "plugs accessory set" and sits in an insert holder. The other accessory plugs have been too much trouble for my day to day use, but for dust-proofing, look like would all serve their purpose ideally, except the sound-reflector cover, which I couldn't get to sit in the case correctly.
All in all, this is an excellent case, and my iPhone 5S is happily encased, protected and secure. I noted that several "third-party" Lightning plugs were too wide to fit, but a quick pass with the Dremel sorted that right out.
Also, for those that complained last time, Strike Industries now stock a Samsung S4 Active version and for the candy-coloured wolves out there, a iPhone 5C version as well.