The Disease of Buying iPhone Cases...

Discussion in 'iPhone Accessories' started by MR Bulk, Jan 27, 2013.

  1. MR Bulk macrumors regular

    Jan 25, 2013
    ...has afflicted me big time. I got my iPhone 5 about a month ago and have been on an unending quest to find that just-right case for me.

    It started right after I walked out of the AT&T store and into the local mall where the cellphone accessories kiosk was. Had to get something for "protection", just for now, until I decided on the best case for me.

    Bought a black textured polymer case with a flip out "kickstand". Twenty bucks and the guy even put it on for me right then and there. I was hooked.

    Turns out I didn't really Need a kickstand as I rarely watch stuff on my phone, and then I discover this forum and a strange contraption called a "credit card case". Hmmm. Seemed so perfectly natural before to carry a phone in one pocket and a wallet in the other. Suddenly I was made to realize I was suffering from the dreaded, "inconvenience and agony of carrying TWO items when I could be just carrying ONE". Oh, the shame.

    I immediately ordered the Targus Wallet Case and camped out by the mailbox for what seemed to be the eternity of three days.

    Got the case and realized it was quite bulky. So although it did hold two or three cards it seems I was still carrying the equivalent of two cases. Plus the edge where the credit card door met the back of the case never aligned right, either too closed (edges would slip past each other without enough cards) or not closed enough.

    So then in the quest to find a slimmer case I Googled credit/card/wallet iPhone 5 cases and therein lies the real danger because now, I ended up seeing nearly EVERYTHING that might possibly hold a credit card and, just incidentally, my phone too.

    Decided on the Incipio Stashback because the Youtube video of the guy sitting at a bar table and flipping the bottom open to whip out his credit card for the pretty waitress just seemed so cool.

    Ordered That and again began checking my mailbox every few hours starting the next day.

    Got it, woo hoo, and it was so dang easy to get the phone in the case, just flip open the bottom hatch and slide the 5 right in. As well as three credit cards. Felt like I coulda forced another one in but I remember reading somewhere that you might end up scratching the back of the phone (it is exposed to direct contact with the cards inside). To Incipio's credit they include not one, but TWO screen protectors, one is for the phone back.

    But it turns out I am not the guy in the bar, the bottom hatch does not open that smoothly or swiftly, and I have to use the fingertips of both hands to get it to work, unless I just wanted to force it open against the pressure of the clasping mechanism which I could tell would not make for a long hatch life.

    But I was impressed with Incipio's quality and the freebie screen protectors, so I figured I'd try their Stowaway, with a handy-dandy SIDE opening rear hatch. Surely it would work smoother than the heavily spring-loaded and latched bottom of the Stashback.

    Sitting on the beach chair I had now installed by my mailbox, I met the Stowaway's arrival in a couple of days and off I went. Side-opening hatch is better, smoother and easier to use. Still had the phoneback protector film installed from the other Incipio so no worries there. And I actually carried this around with me for a few days. Got loads of questions and comments from pretty cashiers. But I realized that I did not like how the cards did not always remain in the compartment when you opened the hatch, despite Incipio engineering little rubbery tabs along both sides of the card slot (credit card edges are not always arrow-straight, especially after they are a few months old).

    And I finally realized that any truly "hard" case is going to come in a fixed size, whether you have one card or three, thick or thin (and cards do vary slightly in thickness from one to another), and all three cases so far were still kinda bulky.

    So then I figured I should get something with some "give", that would accommodate different payload thicknesses. And that is when I found the Sinjimoru, or "Sinji", pouch for cell phones. Imported from Korea, it was made of Lycra and was stretchy, and although it was a tiny half-the-length-of-the-phone little thing and might seem like not too many cards would fit, you quickly discover that it stretches a Lot if needed. I figured I could cram four, maybe five cards in there, along with a folded bill sandwiched in between the cards. I even saw pictures of people stuffing their earphones in there. Seemed amazing.

    So I was sitting on my beach chair and holding an umbrella (it was raining) when the mail truck rolled up with my Sinji. Cool!

    It's when I opened the package that I realized something - to install the Sinji card case you have to stick it directly ONTO YOUR PHONE. And the back of the peel-off release paper said, "3M Industrial Strength VHB" (Very High Bonding) adhesive or something like that. Hmmm, no way I wanted to do that. Not just because of the seemingly semi-permanent stick-on bonding part, but because I tend to change phone cases from time to time, for different uses, environments, occasions and stuff.

    So I came up with a brilliant idea - I bought a cheap, black, ~two-buck TPU (Thermo Poly Urethane?) snap-on case and stuck the Sinji onto That. Worked perfectly.

    I stuffed all the cards I needed (within reason) inside, and used it for a few days. A couple of things though - the version I got was like a black denim jeans color, with a printed orange-yellow stitch pattern around the edge. Looked just like a Levis pocket. Manly, I thought. But the top edge of the pocket was sewn permanently slanted, plus the stitching pattern turned out to be paint or something, and after sliding it in and out of my pocket the stitch pattern began coming off in little pieces. Plus a buddy of mine casually commented that it looked like a little miniature "pocketbook". What?

    So it came OFF my phone right away. No pocketbooks for me, man.

    Then I happened onto the site, seemed similar to Kickstarter, where you come up with ideas and if they like it, it gets financed for production. Maybe that's not quite the Kickstarter model (I think for KickStarter you get regular people on the internet to pledge contributions, not sure how finances things) but anyway there's this iPhone walletcase called the Keeper. Sleek, slim, elegant, refined, LEATHER wallet with a brass-like snapdown closure that's glued and sewn onto a hard grey poly/plastic snap-on case. Really cool looking. Really liked the look of it, and it had two credit card slots on one side and an ID slot with open front (so you don't have to take out your license to show it to the police officer) on the other side.

    The catch was it cost thirty-five bucks. Plus who knows what the shipping would be. So I passed, partially on the cost and also because I saw/heard about another even more classy one that cost about double that. Killspencer Precision Card Carrier. But not the original version, which was made of mostly all wood and seemed way too thin to hold up against the continual in-and-out of credit cards and pocket insertions. Plus it was for the iPhone 4/4S. This new one is the 2.0 designed for the iPhone 5. Sooo expensive though.

    But then while I was scrounging around on ebay one day I found a genuine Quirky Keeper being sold as new, but with box opened for inspection. For like two-thirds the price of a new one. And only $1.95 shipping. After some brief messaging (plus the seller had a perfect 100% feedback score), the good old Buy-It-Now button responded to my mouse click and it was on its way to me.

    Got it, still in box, absolutely brand-new condition, beautiful. No clear plastic over the ID window but that was told to me by the seller and apparently they all are made this way. But no matter, for I now had in my hands what seemed like the Ferrari of all iPhone credit card cases - well, except for the KillSpencer, which would be what - the Bugatti Veyron of all cases?

    The four credit cards (one in each slot on one side and two in the looser fitting ID side) went in hard and tight, but all very do-able and you could tell the leather would break in to fit them well quite soon.

    Kept it on the phone but did not carry it out much, for fear of marring the leather or doing some kind of harm to its amazing good looks. That's the thing about these upscale elegant phone cases, you really hate to take them out anywhere and they become back-in-the-box, dresser-drawer queens.

    Plus that Veyron was calling. You see, I couldn't resist and had already struck up an e-mail conversation with KillSpencer about their Card Carrier 2.0 before I found the Keeper on ebay. But I had resisted the 2.0 because first of all, it was $69.00 plus shipping ($17+ for 2nd-Day UPS but that story is coming up a couple paragraphs down) plus it said on the Checkout page (yes, I had gone that far) that it takes up to three weeks to build one of these since KillSpencer is a custom-order two-man shop. But when I mentioned the waiting period during one of the e-mails, they very evilly said they happened to have one "made and in stock", in just the color and combo I wanted, too...natural oil-tanned leather casing, lined with Italian Alcantara suede, and all bonded to a base of Macassar Ebony Wood. And speaking of Wood, that's right about when I realized I had to have $86.00 later, my Bugatti of cases began winging its way from the Pacific Coast to me...

    Man, what a scintillatingly scrumptious, elegantly classic piece of art this KillSpencer case is. Incredibly beautiful, with four (just EXACTLY FOUR, as it says on the literature) credit cards gliding in and out along the edges of the Alcantara suede with buttery smoothness. And since this too is a stick-on design, I bought another black TPU case and adhered it to that. Unfortunately I began to realize that this is yet another case which will never leave the house...

    So what practical, yet reasonably priced and actually usable iPhone card case will I ever find? That does not cost an arm and a leg, is easy to find and replace if I need another one, and is flexible enough to hold one card or four, or anything in between?

    I think I found it. It's the CM4 Q Card Case, freshly redesigned for the iPhone 5. Although I knew about the case before, it just never struck me as being that desirable. That is until I saw it in the new Mahogany Brown color, and read a bunch of glowing Amazon reviews.

    So I got one, and it is indeed everything I need. Well, almost everything.

    Because in my quest to become truly "cashless", I would have to forego the little Mom 'n Pop food stands at lunch break that still don't take credit cards. I would have to make special ATM trips before poker night with the guys. And I would always have to worry about the little emergencies, the ones that come up when you least expect that always require you have some hard green dead presidents on hand, like the time we were driving up to a mountain resort and it snowed bad on the way and the roadside tire chain guys would only take cash. You know, Murphy's Law.

    So FINALLY, I find a stainless steel money clip on ebay of the exact right size. And I clip it to my Ferrari of cases, the Keeper. And it will take a couple of folded bills along with four cards and together, they provide a total solution to my phone-and-wallet carry needs.

    But I still look, and all it would take is another new case and off I'll go. Like I said, it's a disease.

    Here are some pictures of the cases and the final combo I went through.

    So far.

    Attached Files:

  2. HKSSS macrumors member

    Nov 9, 2012
    I always check out new cases too but have only got one because i felt that it's a waste of money. It's not like i change case everyday or week. Save yourself few dollars and donate it.
  3. MR Bulk thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 25, 2013
    Well, not sure I can afford to donate them although I plan to keep just the Ferrari, the Bugatti and the CM4. The rest I could part with at extremely reasonable prices if anybody's interested, all still like new and with their respective original boxes/packages.

    Come to think of it I bought three or four different car mounts for cellphones as well, plus a folding/unfolding credit card knife to kinda show off how it fits inside one of these cases as it is the exact same size as the typical credit card.

    Seems I also have a full box of iPhone cases and accessories for the 4 and 4S versions as well, although we have recently moved homes and I'm in a bit of a headscratcher as to where the find them all at the moment.

    But the ones in the pictures are located very securely indeed.
  4. MistahMumford, Jan 27, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2013

    MistahMumford macrumors 6502


    Nov 12, 2011
    The Disease of Buying iPhone Cases...

    Buying phone cases be a disease. I had it bad with my 4/4S. With the 5 I've only purchased 2 and have had no desire to purchase any more.
  5. clyde2801 macrumors 601


    Mar 6, 2008
    In the land of no hills and red dirt.
    Yeah, I'm also accessorizing like a primary school girl, but at least it's with cheaper accessories. I'm used to wearing fairly padded up iPhones, preferably on a belt holster. Not being eligible for an upgrade until the beginning of this month, there's a relative wealth of available, lower prices cases as well. Not sure if that's a blessing or a curse.

    Started with spigen glas.t.r online and found a decent two piece case at a local discount store that will work with it for under $10. My joy was then diminished by the fact that I had to find a large, generic holster at a mall kiosk for $20.

    But in the meanwhile, I had decided the iPhone5 needed a lighter, slimmer combo to showcase its lightness and sleekness. After all, it did already have the glas on the front with the accompanying protective skin on the back. Back to another mall kiosk for a generic bumper for $20. (And by this time, I figured out mall kiosks have to sell pieces of chewing gum for $20 to meet their rent and other overhead.) Not looking at it through the plastic, I failed to see that the cutout around the lightning port wasn't big enough to accomodate a 30 pin to lightning adapter. Ugh.

    Waiting on ebay for a aluminum bumper that the seller told me wouldn't noticeably affect signal reception for $30, and a TARDIS back skin for $10. Figuring if I don't like the bumper, I can sell the aluminum bumper on CL and regain most of my money, or demand a refund if it does effect my signal. Also have a tpu bumper on watch for $6 and a deff cleave for $15 just in case.

    This isn't including the @ $50 I've spent on generic and authentic lightning cables and adapters, mostly on the single authentic adapter so I can play my music and charge my phone on the bose portable sounddock that Apple already made a profit on. (Thanks, Apple.)

    If I had been one of the early adopters, I'm sure this would have been infinitely more annoying and expensive. And besides wringing every penny out of us they can to make the dicks on wall street happy, Apple contributes to this scenario by their secrecy in releasing new products: I'm noticing most of the newer cases and accessories are already starting to feature widened cutouts around the lightning port to accommodate the adapters.

    And unlike reviewers and tech pundits, I also wouldn't complain if the 5s or 6 has the same form factor as they did with the iPhone 4 and 4s. That was a major break, at least for the makers of accessories and for us consumers.
  6. robertk328 macrumors regular


    Jun 24, 2010
    I think the fact that there are so many choices makes it easy to go crazy. But then again that should help you find the best one for you - just may take a while! :)
  7. MR Bulk thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 25, 2013
    Amazingly, Four Cards plus Cash Do Fit

    Some before/after pictures of a couple of cases crammed with four cards plus a folded bill. Incredibly, they all do fit in the CM4 and KillSpencer cases although probably not recommended for quick-draw paying situations. At least not until the cases stretch out a little as the cards are still held in pretty tightly.

    Attached Files:

  8. Steevie macrumors regular

    Nov 27, 2012
    Wow that was in intense post. Glad you found what you were looking for
  9. MR Bulk thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 25, 2013
    Thanks but truth be told, I don't think I'm's a sickness I tell ya! *GULP*:(
  10. Bloodraw850 macrumors 6502


    Jul 12, 2011
    I don't even want to think of much I've spent on iPhone and iPad cases #
  11. NovemberWhiskey macrumors 68030


    May 18, 2009
    he put the case on for you and you only paid $20!?
  12. xtremr macrumors newbie

    Jan 28, 2013
    That was a lot to read. Great find for your last case though. Looks really nice. I also agree that when it came to owning an iphone, I also began looking for that perfect case and accessories. With previous phones, I stuck with 1 case. When I got my first iphone, I bought 3 cases, 1 decal skin, 3 or 4 different types of screen protectors, and a protective case for water activities such as the beach and steam room/hot tub.
  13. MR Bulk thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 25, 2013
    Yeah it would be much better if I didn't remember either...I need an amnesia pill!

    But then I would see all these dang cases laying around and be wondering, "Where the HAY-ull did all this stuff come from?! :D


    Yes it does seems cheep but then after that I went home and started finding all those two-dollar cases on ebay! Chinese and Korean makers have such cheep labor it gets ridiculous...


    I know, right? Seems I simply started inventing new reasons and excuses to get more stuff...:eek:
  14. Dino F macrumors 68030

    Dino F

    Sep 16, 2010
    Croydon, South London, UK
  15. Rocko1 macrumors 68020


    Nov 3, 2011
    It is a disease and a piss poor waste of energy.
  16. darky90 macrumors member

    Oct 30, 2012
    Something about the iphone makes people go crazy with accessories. I know many who have switched out their cases several times since it was new. I guess since there are so many different cases out there for iphones that people have more options to alternate their case like how we change our clothes.
  17. Mrbobb macrumors 601

    Aug 27, 2012
    Am afraid to ask how much you spent on cases so far?

    Well the economy needs it. :)
  18. djransom macrumors 68040


    May 14, 2008
    I'm really trying to slow down on the cases. I just ordered one via eBay and I've told myself that this will be the very last case that I order. I ordered a black Superleggera case and I think it will get the job done. I also have an Otterbox Defender on the way to me as well.
  19. swoosh0217, Jan 30, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013

    swoosh0217 macrumors 6502a


    Nov 20, 2007
    You know... If youre not satisfied w your purchase, u can always return it 90 days after original purchase or otherwise u can sell them to get some of your money back.

    You're never going to settle for just one case and that's a fact... You just need to do your research before buying and after u have purchased a case, try it for few weeks and if not satisfied, return it so u wont waste your money. I found out that if i buy my case from a retail store or online stores like Amazon, they have a full money back guarantee unlike eBAY were its a pain dealing with some sellers.

    My best suggestion is keep doing some research before buying. Go to and search some videos for reviews. The question to ask yourself is do you really need all the extra stuff that comes with a case or do u need a case mainly just for protection of your phone because that's pretty much is the main reason why we buy cases for our phones is for protection.

    Once you find the right one, enjoy it for as long as you can and when you get bored, do some research again before buying another one.
  20. MR Bulk thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 25, 2013
    Yes, I do like how the side edges are sloped to reduce its seeming width. There is a tradeoff point between size and utility, and in my opinion this one *juuuust* exceeds the size (thickness) although in trying to make up for it, they put in little cubbies on the ends for secret stashes and whatnot. And me being me, I will probably succumb to this version. You know, just to "try it out"...*sigh*


    I agree, ya got me there. But to be honest, so is running around in the desert with long headwear (or is that hair)?! Haw!


    I'm thinking that having a phone is not just about it being a daily necessity any more. Instead, it is now a hobby, a fashion statement, and a search for a way to justify ownership (when many times a landline or even a string between two cans will do) by finding protection and utility purposes for its accessories.

    But I'm hooked.


    Counting just the ones in the first pictures, about $250. But counting my wife and daughter's cases, as well as those for prior iPhones, and then if I add in the toys for my prior Prior PRIOR cellphones (including my absolute Very first mobile, the Motorola "Brick") well then I can't count. Since that Brick itself cost $1600 - yeah, I was crazy back then and bought it when it first came available. And in my early 60's now, judging from the OP above, I'm still a little crazy...

    But life is indeed short and I don't want to be thinking later, "Hmm, maybe I shoulda tried out this, or that, or the other...", etc., and be filled with regret.

    As they say: "YOLO" or, You Only Live Once. Unless you're James Bond. Which that KillSpencer would be perfect for. :cool:


    So you tried one of these? I'm curious, what did you think?


    Oh yeah, right. I tell myself that a lot, too...but that SuperLeggera case intrigues me. I know the term means super lightweight when applied to sports cars, etc. So this is a thin, barely-there type case?


    Yeah my problem is not so much not knowing what I'm buying, but being unable to RESIST buying them even though I already know something about it (I do hang out at Youtube and read written reviews, etc.), unable to resist because I think that part of it is actually like a "hobby" for me, the acquisition, the feel of it in your hand, the comparing of your personal impressions and notes to that of what the review said, etc.

    And camping out by the mailbox has its charm, too. ;) The anticipation...

    And then you now have this arsenal of cases you can swap back and forth, just for sitting around and swapping back and forth's sake...:D

    Plus most of mine came from ebay, so forget about returning them...!
  21. djransom macrumors 68040


    May 14, 2008
    It's a 2 layer case I believe. There's the silicone to cover the phone and then a hard case that goes over that.
  22. clyde2801 macrumors 601


    Mar 6, 2008
    In the land of no hills and red dirt.
    So far, I'm liking the aluminum bumper. Haven't noticed any signal degradation so far...

    Attached Files:

  23. TimonPumba macrumors newbie

    Jan 17, 2013
    You need professional help....

    hahahaha jp we all suffer from this
  24. clyde2801 macrumors 601


    Mar 6, 2008
    In the land of no hills and red dirt.
    Hey! I can stop anytime I....

    ...yeah, you're probably right.
  25. MR Bulk thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 25, 2013
    Hey! I myself indeed HAVE stopped. Uh - many, many times...heh heh...:rolleyes:

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