Otterbox Defender for the 5

Discussion in 'iPhone Accessories' started by ATC, Dec 22, 2012.

  1. ATC macrumors 6502a

    Apr 25, 2008
    I personally like my iPhone naked but I never really liked babying my phone and wanted to keep it in like-new condition (for resale) so I'm forced to use a case.

    I've tried so many cases for my 4, the only one that I felt confident in for protection was the Defender case by Otterbox. I never tried LifeProof but a couple of friends got them and had nothing but problems with them. But lets face it, the Defender case Otterbox made for the iPhone 4/4S sucked big time.

    It was so thick and bulky but that wasn't even one of its main drawbacks. The rubber was loose and loosened even more over time which made the case feel horrible and cheap, and the type of rubber they used was a lint magnet. Every time I took it out of a jacket pocket it was just drenched with fibers and lint.

    Also, the port covers were really pathetic, flipping open on their own, almost impossible to secure in place. And the screen protector just gave the retina display a muddy look.

    I was very hesitant to try out the new Defender but I needed something interim while I researched a good case, and I thought I'd try it for a few days and if I didn't like it I'd then return it.

    Well, I'm in love with this case. Otterbox seems to have actually listened to their customer complaints about the old one because they've literally addressed every issue I had with it.

    Even though the new one is of course taller, overall the case feels quite a bit thinner and pocketable. The rubber is much firmer now and fits perfectly, I can't imagine it ever loosening. Also the rubber now has a slick matte finish to it, so it doesn't attract lint at all.

    Best of all, the ports are very secure, almost hard to open now which I much prefer to the way it was before. And the screen protector, while not quite as clear as say an SGP Ultra Crystal, it's very good and definitely usable.

    The only negatives I found, and I'm reaching here, is that the opening for the rear camera/flash and front opening for the earpiece and camera are really big so if the case does end up placed with keys or other sharp objects, there is a chance they will come into contact with the camera lenses which may scratch them.

    But all in all, it's a great case. I highly recommend it.
  2. jeep92 macrumors newbie

    Jul 9, 2010

    My 5 with defender is just as thick as my dads 4s with the defender. Also if you're trying to keep the phone scratchless the defender isn't for you. Mine scratched all over and its only been in the case. It's also chipped.
  3. naths macrumors 6502

    Feb 15, 2009
    Great case for me, i'v even removed the screen protecter and use the SGP ultra crystal that i already had fitted....great case...
  4. ATC thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Apr 25, 2008
    Ouch. I'd be pissed if that happened. What did you do? Did you contact Otterbox? Where exactly did it scratch, is it where the openings are or on the inside?

    It's strange, I'm looking at mine here and I can't see how it's even possible to scratch from the inside. The phone sits in the inner plastic casing, and there are soft cushions there that secure the phone in place, there are no movements or give at all. I've also just inspected my phone, though it's only been in the case for 4 days (with a 3ft drop on to carpet in my basement from yesterday) and there are no signs of any scratch, chip, dent etc...

    Just out of curiosity, where did you get your case from? I'm not saying yours is, but I've seen a ton of fake defender cases out there. I just saw one in person a few days ago and honestly I couldn't even tell the difference. eBay and even some Amazon sellers are stocked full of them. I saw one at a local cell repair shop (selling them for $20 :cool:)

    If you contact Otterbox, they'll get you to send in your case and if it's a fake they will replace it with a genuine one.

    As far as thickness, there's definitely a thickness difference between the 4/4S case and the 5, I have them here side by side and it looks to be 1-2mm difference. Not much but it's noticeable.
  5. oTypically macrumors member

    Dec 17, 2012
    In other words. Purchase a ton of fake otterboxes and sed the otterbox for genuine ones. Than sell those. Eventually you'll be able to buy a new iphone with a better case.

    On topic: I have a defender on my 4s. I have 0 scratches.
    I'm getting rid of it though. It's too big.
  6. ATC thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Apr 25, 2008

    Yeah, good luck with that. :rolleyes:

    No, what I was saying is I've seen instances where Otterbox did the right thing by customers who were sold fakes, and replaced their fakes with genuine one at no extra cost. I'm sure Otterbox got the sellers' info in the process and then turned around and went after those sellers. It's the easiest way for them to identify sellers of fakes without doing much leg work. Definitely don't go out there seeking fakes to trade in. You won't get far with that.

    I agree with you about the Defender for the 4/4S, it's utter garbage. The one for the 5 is a different beast entirely.
  7. RossMc macrumors 65816


    Apr 30, 2010
    Newcastle, UK
    I've been looking into the defender for when i'm at work as I work in Construction but have noticed that the front camera & back camera cut outs have no protection so dust would still be able to get in there so I think that I am going to go with the Griffin Survivor. The defender would probably be my first choice if it wasn't for that.
  8. ATC thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Apr 25, 2008
    I agree, the openings for the cameras are a drawback, not only that but those openings are quite large too. On the old Defender that I have (for the 4) the openings are still exposed but they're so much smaller than it wasn't an issue. No idea why they did it this way now.

    I suppose you could place a cut-down screen protector underneath the exposed areas but they may negatively impact the proximity sensor and cameras so I wouldn't recommend that.

    For my use the case in its current form is fine but if you're in a very dusty environment you might be better off with another case.


    I've always wanted to try out LifeProof. Looks really good but two of my friends had nothing but issues with them (on their 4S), even with the replacements they received from LifeProof the issues were still there. Something to do with either the mic or speaker not sounding proper in the case, affecting calls whereby callers on the other end couldn't hear the sound and vice versa.

    Maybe it's now fixed for the 5 (?).
  9. AllAmerican macrumors newbie

    Dec 14, 2012
    Nope. In time the Lifepoof case for the 5 might be better. For now it's really poor quality. Rainbow effect on the screen, earpiece rattling, ect.. They're just gluing pieces on the insides in hopes of making it usable
  10. jeep92 macrumors newbie

    Jul 9, 2010
    I did get mine from Amazon but my dads 4s Otterbox is doing the same to his phone. He NEVER takes it out of the otterbox to clean it so that's probably why it's getting scratched.

    His Otterbox also got very very stretched out around the home button and it's defiantly a real one. Maybe we're just rough on our phones/cases (he's a cop and I'm a janitor at O'hare.)
  11. Arelunde macrumors 6502a


    Jul 6, 2011
    CA Central Coast
    I bought two different color Otterbox Defenders - both from Amazon, both about the same price (about $36 each) but different suppliers. The first one is perfect. The second one is essentially an iPhone 5 version of the iPhone 4 OD. It has the sloppy, tacky silicone exterior, not the stiffer, smoother, far-superior one of the real OD. The inside layers seem to be identical, other than colors.

    I've examined the tacky one and decided it's a knock-off. But I have to say, it's terribly accurate. If it weren't for the material used on the exterior, I wouldn't be suspicious. On close examination, one difference I can see is the size of the Otterbox logo on the back. The knock-off logo is about 2/3 the size of the real deal. Another point of suspicion was the colors of the knock-off. They were almost the colors I ordered, but looking closer, they weren't the same at all.

    I've used the inside of the knock-off (like the color) with the outside layer of the real-deal and they fit together perfectly! I hadn't realized knock-offs could be that close to the real. So, I bit the bullet and ordered the color I want directly from Otterbox at full price. I should have done that in the first place - it would have been cheaper in the long run.

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