iPad mini Spigen Hardbook vs. Portenzo Hardback vs. Dodocase Hardcover

Discussion in 'iPad Accessories' started by JtheLemur, Dec 7, 2012.

  1. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2002
    #1
    Quick summary for anyone looking at these cases.

    •http://www.spigen.com/tablets/apple/ipad-mini/ipad-mini-hardbook-case.html

    •http://shop.portenzo.com/hardback-for-ipad-mini

    •http://www.dodocase.com/products/hardcover-classic-for-ipad-mini-cases

    All three are the same physical size.

    All three are nearly the same weight.

    The Portenzo and Dodocase are nicely handmade with different material options; the Spigen is more manufactured, using a light rubber material for the outside and a fabric on the inside.

    Portenzo and Dodocase use adhesive; the Spigen uses a matte plastic frame.

    They all have "HARD" in their names.

    Portenzo and Dodocase are proper folios with minimal stand-ability; the Spigen has a rubber nub that lets it stand.

    All three let you wrap the cover around the back, book style.

    In the end, I have to give the thumbs-up to the Spigen Hardbook. It looks like a book, and what it lacks in the "wow this is a nice homemade book cover" department, it makes up for in functionality - that is, the ability to act as a decent stand.
     
  2. macrumors 68030

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    #2
    i have owned all these cases for the big ipads and could not agree more...
     
  3. macrumors newbie

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    Dec 14, 2012
    #3
    How well does the Spigen case stay closed since it doesn't have an elastic band?

    Which one looks more like a book when its closed (I feel like that might deter theft a bit)?

    I've heard that the wood frame cases will warp over time--do you think that's true?
     
  4. thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2002
    #4
    - none of these cases have wood frames. The only one with a frame is the Spigen and it's polycarbonate.

    - the Spigen has a bit of magnetic grip when closed. Enough so that I've never had it "open accidentally" on me. It definitely has more magnetic grip than the Portenzo even with its advertised "MagnaGrip" feature. It's a load of BS - has the worst grip of any case I've used.

    - they all look equally like books, hence the point of writing my original post: three like-sized like-styled cases, the theme being "books"
     
  5. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2012
    #5
    Do you think the rubber nub on the front cover scratches the ipad screen? When the cover is closed, is it the only point that makes contact with the ipad? Thanks for answering my questions.
     
  6. thread starter macrumors 6502

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    May 13, 2002
    #6
    the rubber nub is harmless. if anything you may get a standard finger-grease-smear on the screen from it (I sure haven't), but that's it. Get the Spigen dude, great case.
     
  7. macrumors 68030

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    #7
    man, people on forums worry about the smallest things......;)
     
  8. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2012
    #8
    Thanks for the info.

    Maybe I worry too much--I like to think I'm being a cautious and thoughtful consumer. I prefer to put more work into finding my purchases to make sure I get a quality product so I don't have to buy more things when they break (among other reasons). The less products we buy, the smaller impact we'll have on the planet. I'm hoping that this case will last for the life of my ipad mini: hopefully 2 or 3 years.
     
  9. thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2002
    #9
    I think you will be very happy with the Spigen case.

    Since writing this I've tried out the SwitchEasy Canvas (whose cases I usually love, they make great stuff) but the polish is not where I expect it to be from them - specifically the cover seemed a little too short, didn't go all the way to the edge. Probably would correct after breaking it in a bit but didn't wait to find out. Returned.

    Case Mate Tuxedo - another great minimalist case. Honestly I may have kept it if it had magnets to wake-from-sleep on open. No dice. Returned.

    Twelve South BookBook - well, tried my friend's out. So nice. But a) no magnets, and b) over-engineered for the paranoid. If it was cut down in size to the Spigen Hardbook, minus the zipper, minus the dramatic leather holder for the iPad, etc - that'd be a different story.

    Honestly my ideal case would be if the BookBook and the Hardbook had a baby. Until then, the Spigen Hardbook is rocking it.
     
  10. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2007
    #10
    I tried two different Portenzo cases, and both times the wood warped. Still holds the iPad mini well, but for that money I'd expect no issues. To their credit, the customer service has been outstanding and I do love their quality - just wish they wouldn't warp.

    Just received the Spigen Hardbook and will be using that for a while. Like the feel, however it does seem a little cheaply made (this may be due to the fact that I have been using a well hand made Portenzo case minus warping of course).

    Thinking about trying out a Portenzo Hardback, but wish they made an Alano slim for it (sorta like they do for the iPhone - no wood frame, just leather cover). I do prefer a little more protection though. Does anyone who owns a HardBack know if an iPad mini with a thin plastic case on the back would fit into the Hardback? my guess is the spine wouldn't fit over, but to me that would be the ideal case.

    Any other recommendations on cases like this? A coworker has the kindle fire and I really like the amazon case for it - wish they made one for the mini as I would order it right away (link). The rubber piece on the front side of the cover allows it to stand at many angles and would like Portenzo to add something like this for their Hardback as it could work well as a stand. Plus it adds full coverage.
     
  11. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2010
    #11
    What about ease of removal? I've been longing for a Dodocase because the ribbon on the case seems to make it easy to remove the case. I'd love to be able to easily take the case off when I'm at home without risking the iPad's edges. For now, I'm using the smart cover when out and about, then snapping it off when I'm at home, but I do love the idea of the book case on such a small device...and then going naked when I'm relaxing with it at home.

    Thanks for this thread...was having these very same questions about all these types of cases!
     
  12. macrumors 68030

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    #12
    becasue it does not "snap in" or out, after a few months of this, the rubber gives out and it will fall out of the case....seriously, these cases are great for an office person that wants the look, never takes it out and never packs it..it is great "desk garnish" Here's how many I bought for my sales staff - all replaced with backs and covers or the spiegens...
    [​IMG]
    and here's what they do after a while:
    [​IMG]
     
  13. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2012
    #13
    Just ordered the Spigen. I use a Spigen for my i5 and couldn't be happier with it. Thanks for the tips, guys.

    I've been using a smart cover with a clear Belkin back cover, but can't stand the smart cover on this one.
     
  14. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2007
    #14
    Glen, do you know the answer to the below"

    Does anyone who owns a HardBack know if an iPad mini with a thin plastic case on the back would fit into the Hardback? my guess is the spine wouldn't fit over, but to me that would be the ideal case.
     
  15. glen e, Mar 6, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2013

    macrumors 68030

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    #15

    This is a coverbuddy and the Hardback....

    It ALMOST fits... but stresses the binder by a bit...and pushes the pad out 1/4 in on the exposed edge to clear the binder:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  16. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2007
    #16
    Almost - that would probably be my ideal case. How is the iPad secured, 4 circle strips? Do you use that one a lot? Supposedly they are coming out the with Alano like that (no wood frame - just leather cover)

    I loved having the belkin back and black smart cover for my original iPad, but the smart cover for the iPad mini wouldn't stay flat and felt cheap.

    The Spigen is a nice looking case, it just seems a little cheap. When closed the liner comes of the inside binding and you can see the glue - noticed this on others when I google imaged it. It does have a nice feel to it however, and the size is nice. Although the rubber stopper on the inside leaves a mark on my screen.
     
  17. macrumors 68030

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    #17
    the hardback is a nice case, but I just use it for "show" meetings as the edges will wear fast throwing it in and out of bags and the like. The sticky circles work very well. For the price, I like having it part of my "case stable"....
     
  18. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2007
    #18
    Ya, edges is why I may wait for the leather one to come out. Didn't like how my HardBook looked after a while.
     
  19. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2012
    #19
    I went ahead and purchased the Switcheasy Canvas. I love its look, functionality, build quality, and price. Before buying the Canvas, I ordered a Pad & Quill case, but it just seemed gimmicky for the $60 price tag. There was so little functionality--it was uncomfortable to even hold!
     
  20. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2012
    #20
    I just got the Spigen Hardbook in the mail and snapped my mini into place. I love the look and feel of the case, but the magnet is weak as all get out.

    If I hold the case and tilt it so that the screen is facing the floor, it will at times unlatch by itself.

    The case is high quality otherwise; I just can't believe they put such a weak magnet in there.

    You dropped the ball, Spigen.
     
  21. glen e, Mar 9, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2013

    macrumors 68030

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    #21
    it's a heavy lid, I doubt it was ever supposed to keep it closed upside down, just there to trigger the on/off. Most folio cases won't pass this test....I think spiegen did fine on this....
     
  22. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2012
    #22
    Yes that's true. I'm also considering snipping the thread in the little rubber tag on the inside cover and removing it. I don't like the mark that it leaves on the screen and I hardly ever need to stand the iPad up.

    But otherwise, it seems pretty sturdy and elegant.
     
  23. glen e, Mar 10, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2013

    macrumors 68030

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    #23
    mis post
     
  24. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2007
    #24
    If you do this please let me know and post pics. I considering doing the same. It would have been better if they put some sort of non-slipping rubber pads on the side of the plastic case that holds the iPad where it meets the front cover when folded in media mode. This would allow it to stand and not have anything on the screen.
     
  25. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2013
    #25
    Is the magnet actually meant to keep it closed? isnt it for the sleep wake function?
     

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