Griffin Survivor Case for iPhone 4 Review



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Your iPhone 4 is going into battle, you need it to withstand heavy shock, large drops, strong wind, crazy rain, extreme vibration, and the most fierce sand storms. Well, you’re in luck! Griffin has just released their Survivor Extreme-Duty Case for iPhone 4 that will literally make your iPhone battle-ready. The new case meets and exceeds US/UK Military Standards, plus it looks good and feels good too.

There are three parts to Griffin’s Survivor case, four pieces in total. There’s the swivel clip, which is completely optional. Then there’s the thick silicone outer shell, and on the inside is a two piece hard plastic padded case. The two-piece inner case snaps around the iPhone, and has a built-in clear plastic screen protector which also covers the front camera and earpiece. The shock absorbing silicone outer shell stretches over the inner case and provides button overlays for the volume, lock, and home buttons. The case has silicone flaps that plug the headphone, vibrate toggle, rear camera, and dock connector/mic/speaker ports. Unfortunately, these flaps prevent Survivor case from being 100% water-proof, though it’s still water resistant. The durable, thick plastic clip snaps on to the back of the case and can swivel 180 degrees, though it’s technically 360 degrees as the clip can be attached upside-down. The clip also doubles as a stand if you pull it back all the way.

You don’t need to take my word that this case makes your iPhone near-destruction-proof. There are videos on http://www.griffintechnology.com/armored of just how extreme you can get with Griffin’s survivor case. You can watch them chuck it as far as they can onto an asphalt parking lot as it bounces fifteen times, or watch them take turns hurling it as hard as they can against against a wall (until it goes through the wall). The iPhone is on the entire time and seems to work just fine. iPhone treks through every severe test unscathed, except for one: running it over with a Dodge Magnum breaks the case and cracks the iPhone. But hey, at least the iPhone still worked.

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If you’ve made it this far, you may be wondering if this case is for you. Unless you’re working construction, or constantly drop, throw, and/or beat your iPhone, then it’s not a good everyday case. Though, it could very well pay itself off just as a case for the beach, camping, or any type of adventuring. It’s a very durable phone case, and the added size is pretty manageable–it’s quite lightweight and very comfortable to hold. The button overlays work very well at keeping sand and moisture out, but the flaps can get frustrating. The rear camera flap has to be physically held off to the side, otherwise it will get in the way of the picture (annoying!). Certain headphones may not fit because of the deep groove. The case protrudes a few millimeters past the iPhone’s face, this makes it tricky to register touch on the sides of the screen, especially while typing.

All in all, the Griffin Survivor is an awesome case, but only if you need it. The added size, cumbersome port covers, and tricky keyboard typing is enough to make you want to use a regular case. However, if you’re adventurous, on the beach, and/or need to make your iPhone near-destruction proof, the Griffin is comfortable, light, good looking, and does a bang up job at protecting your iPhone 4 from nearly anything. Our army green (olive) case looks as if it could be a limited edition Halo themed iPhone case. It is also available in black, pink/black, and white/black. Griffin makes their Survivor Armored Case for iPod Touch 4G and soon-to-come for iPad 2. The Survivor Case retails for $49.99, though the black version can be found on Amazon for just $25. At $25, it’s a nice case to have to have for beach days, even if it’s just the black version.



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Specs from GriffinTechnology.com:
* Fits iPhone 4 models from all carriers
* Independently tested and certified to meet conditions outlined in US Department of Defense MIL-STD-810 and UK Department of Defense Def-Stan 00-35
* Integral Display shield deflects Wind/Rain (Test: Up to 200 mm/hr for 1 hour)
* Rigid internal frame protects from Shock/Drop (Test: Drop on flat concrete surface from 6′/1.8 m)
* Sealed ports block Blown Sand/Dust (up to 18 m/sec for 1 hour)
* Silicone cladding blocks vibration (18 hrs at 20-2000 Hz)
* Multi-position clip attaches securely to pack strap or belt

 

The Good: Comfortable, Makes iPhone near-indestructible, access to all ports and buttons, button overlays work well, Clip doubles as stand, lightweight

The Bad: Not “water-proof”, difficult to type with it on, difficult to take a picture using back camera, large