Need help deciding: Lifeproof Fre vs Lifeproof Nüüd

Discussion in 'iPhone Accessories' started by iLive an iLife, Jul 18, 2013.

  1. iLive an iLife macrumors newbie

    Mar 24, 2012

    I've been thinking about a waterproof case for months and months now. About 2 months ago I grabbed a Fre but it was an early generation and had too many problems to keep. I've been on these forums reading topics and posts about each but am still undecided. Tonight I got caught in a torrential downpour and nearly ruined my phone. For those members who have used both, what do you recommend? I'm loving the Nüüd because it wont suffer from a lack of sensitivity but the no screen protector makes me nervous (one more seal that could fail).

    Overall, what case offers the best sound quality and has the least amount of issues? I know no waterproof case is perfect and I'm willing to compromise.


    PS - I've read both the Fre and Nüüd threads and am still undecided (the reason I made this topic).
  2. maliu macrumors 6502a

    Jun 24, 2010
    I have both. Hands down the Nuud has way better sound.
  3. iLive an iLife thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 24, 2012
    Thanks for the feedback! I should clarified in my original post - best sound as in call clarity or best sound as in speakerphone/ringing without sounding muffled?
  4. SchneiderMan macrumors G3


    May 25, 2008
    As in call quality. The Nuud is great.
  5. maliu macrumors 6502a

    Jun 24, 2010


    Let me clarify, I've owned both. The Nuud is almost indistinguishable from a naked phone in terms of sound quality. The Fre does have a noticeable although acceptable decrease. I would use either, but I don't like anything over my screen. Here the Nuud wins hands down.
  6. TC25 macrumors 68020

    Mar 28, 2011
    Will you be buying the case that gets the most votes? The case that gets the longest post? Just trying to determine how we can help you decide.
  7. iLive an iLife thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 24, 2012
    I'm more or less looking for feedback from those people who have owned both cases. I've read a ton if reviews for both the Fre and Nuud ranging from "the greatest invention ever made" to "not worth a penny." I trust the opinions of forum users over Joe Smith who left a negative review on Best Buy or Amazon. I'm leaning towards the Nuud but have heard about terrible audio problems (people not being able to hear you) when using the case. Thoughts?
  8. BrettDS macrumors 65816

    Nov 14, 2012
    I guess I qualify to give an opinion then. My phone had been in a Fre case since they first were available in November of 2012 until last week Wednesday, when I finally got the Nuud case. In my opinion the Nuud case wins hands down.

    Both cases are waterproof, so they have membranes over the speaker and microphone. This will affect audio quality to some extent and there's really no way to get around that and still have a waterproof case. In my opinion, both of the cases are similar in that regard, but I think the Nuud might sound slightly better on calls (it has a different membrane over the earpiece). There definitely does seem to be some variation from one case to another, even within the Nuud or Fre line, so if you get one that sounds terrible it might be a good idea to try to exchange it for another.

    I also had some issues with other people hearing me while I was talking on the phone with the Nuud case on. In my case, turning Hearing Aid mode on made a big difference, so that might be something to try as well.

    However, the big difference for me is the lack of a screen protector on the Nuud. I had delt with the screen protector on the Fre for 8 months and while I didn't like it, I put up with it for the water protection it provided. When I finally put on the Nuud case I couldn't believe what a difference not having a screen protector made. Not only was it easier to use the phone, since you could touch the screen directly, but the screen looked much better. The screen protector on the Fre has a bit of an antiglare coating and that affected screen quality much more than I realized while I had the case on.

    Of course, there are probably some downsides to the Nuud case that come with not having the screen covered. For now I have left my screen completely naked, but I am still debating putting on a screen protector of some sort to protect it from scratches. A 'regular' stick on screen protector should affect the screen sensitivity and quality much less than the one built into the Fre case.

    Also, as you mentioned above, there is a second seal that could potentially leak. This was a bit of a concern to me and I wanted to see how good the seal was, so I took the case with little plastic fake 'phone' that they include with the case for testing and played with it in the bathtub for a while. Instead of just holding it underwater like they suggest for a water test I took the case and pushed it through the water from one side of the tub to the other as quickly as I could... mostly with the screen facing forward, but also from other angles. I also slapped the case down into the water, again, with the screen facing the water and also from other angles. I tried as hard as I could to get water in that case for about 10 minutes (and splashed quite a bit of water out of the tub in the process) but in the end, it remained bone dry. I am quite happy with the way the seal performed.

  9. awtryau89 macrumors 6502

    Aug 7, 2010
    I will be the one down vote for the Nuud but with a different set of criteria. My Fre was a brand new replacement from Lifeproof in May. It had great sound and a nearly perfect screen protector as far as Fre's go. My Nuud was roughly the same in sound quality. I may give it the nod slightly in call quality but speaker volume and sound may have been a touch less than my Fre.

    The one area I ended up hating the Nuud was the bezel. I could not consistently activate Control Center (running iOS7 beta) and it became a pain typing. My hands a slightly larger than normal I guess but I am a 5'11" male. Overall using both on iOS7 the Fre was hands down the better case for gestures. It wasn't close. This was more important to me than screen quality. You need to realize I am one that used a Power Support anti glare forever. I now use the Belkin Iris and leave it on under my Fre.
  10. iLive an iLife thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 24, 2012
    Well I want to thank everyone for all of their input. I ended up going to Best Buy after work yesterday and picked up...

    *drum roll, please*

    A Lifeproof Nuud! I've got to admit, this case is nothing short of amazing! I managed to get one with a perfectly straight home button and EXCELLENT sound quality. For me, the Nuud took everything I liked about the Fre and improved upon it. I honestly feel like I am ready for anything now! Being on those freak summer storms!

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