Vaja Black Series for iPhone 4 Review

Discussion in 'iPhone Accessories' started by Nieval, Jul 28, 2010.

  1. Nieval macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2008
    Location:
    Reading, U.K.
    #1
    Few companies can brag that buying their products is an experience as opposed to just a purchase and on that elite list is Vaja. I was lucky enough to get a Vaja Black Series for my iPhone 4 and after several days of use I’ve decided to post my review of it; only instead of just posting your everyday, emotionless review, I decided to bring you along with me on the ride, all the while pointing out what I’ve come to like and dislike about the case. I hope you find it both helpful and enjoyable.

    I don’t think you can forget a Vaja purchase or unboxing, be that because of the long, almost excruciating wait for the case to arrive, the deliciously intricate details or the appetite-inducing aroma of leather that fills your room instantly when you first open the box. As a result, this senses appealing experience leaves a unique and tantalizing imprint in your memory. So sweet is the rush, I find it could almost be addicting.

    My case arrived in the new Vaja packaging: a white box cover with designer, rectangular cutouts running in parallel verticals, exposing the rainbow colouring of the actual box underneath. The pattern is simple yet strangely hypnotizing and, as a result, you’d be forgiven for not noticing the subtle ‘Vaja’ logo in the lower right corner. A touch repeated equally as subtly on the inside of the case and a touch specifically created to emphasis the quiet graceful demeanor of Vaja and their cases.

    All Vaja cases are created using “Vaja Exclusive Leather” which are full grain cowhide representing the top 10% of Argentinian leather handpicked for “quality, strength, character and grain.” This particular case consists of “Floater” grained leather which offers enhanced resistance to everyday use and wear.
    The outside is black (hence the name Black Series) with Rosso red interior however, buyers are free to customize their interior from a plethora of colour options available.

    The build consists of a ‘main body’ to cradle your iPhone from which extends a flap that is used to cover the front screen with when the device is not in use. This effectively offers your phone full body protection, all the while exposing the silent and volume controls, the headphone jack and sleep/wake button. You’ll find that the back is adored on the bottom with the new Vaja metal logo a more tasteful and stylish branding as opposed to the previous, plain imprinted Vaja labeling.

    With the flap on, the dock connector is inaccessible and charging requires opening the case to insert the cable, a trade off buyers must take into account when considering this case. Personally, I find having the screen visible to follow the battery status while charging helpful.
    Another common concern is the interference of the flap with daily use, an issue I think ultimately boils down to personal taste, those who enjoy flaps, will love it and those who don’t, will despise it. I was one of those in the middle, considering this case but unsure about the flap, and after days of use, it’s become a nonissue for me, muscle memory making me not even aware of the maneuver anymore. All in all, I’ve not found these trade offs to be annoying or disabling in any way.

    The fit is best described like the feel of new straight jeans on your legs, snug and precise but not suffocating, even with a full body skin on. This “tightness” is welcome and adds a reassuring feel of solidity and sturdiness to the overall degree of protection. Drop tests that I performed from waist height failed to injure the device and if the Vaja 3G/3GS cases are any indication to go by, buyers should have no doubts that their phones will be more than satisfactorily protected. However there is one possible vulnerability, in order for the camera and accompanying flash to be suitably exposed, the corresponding corner is left exposed posteriorly and an unfortunate drop, exactly on this spot, could be damaging.

    Lastly the price and this is an area many people contest so lets dissect it. Some people may find it hard to justify an $80 price tag for this case but as White/Rhino (another Macrumors member) put it, “I would call a $30 rubber band expensive”. A comment that I think hits the nail on the head because it shines some perceptive on the price, especially if you remember that each case is delicately handcrafted, one case at a time, with the finest, exclusive leather available, to the colour choosing of your like.
    Another argument is that buying a Vaja for your phone would be akin to buying a Rolex or Bentley, you’re buying into an elite market to enjoy the pinnacle of luxury all the while also enjoying top class quality and protection. Only instead of paying thousands of dollars, you’ll be paying $80, $50 more for arguably the best leather iPhone case on the market, “It may be expensive but is it really that more expensive?”
    I’ll spare you the cliches of “it’s art, a masterpiece, etc..” and I’ll leave it to you to ultimately decide if that justifies the price or not. Instead let me sign off by saying that Vaja may just have found the ideal fusion of style with function, an expression few have managed to pull-off and for my money, I would definitely recommend the Vaja Black Series if you’re in the market for a leather flap case.

    Thanks for your time and if you’ve got any questions I’ll do my best to answer.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. chanerz macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2010
  3. Nieval thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2008
    Location:
    Reading, U.K.
    #3
    Some more pics, I'm working on the ones with the phone actually in the case, I'll post them soon enough.
     

    Attached Files:

  4. walds11 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 30, 2010
    Location:
    Philly, PA
    #4
    Thanks for the nice review. How does the floater leather look and feel? Like one poster mentioned in another thread, they don't look as nice as on Vaja's website. I am still trying to decided between the Top or Grip.
     
  5. Nieval thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2008
    Location:
    Reading, U.K.
    #5
    Thanks for the comment.
    The floater is Vaja's grained leather, my personal second case of this kind, and I think it feels great. It has the overall "smoothness" of the caternia leather but the creases add a nice roughness to it. It makes it feel more "executive" I think especially with the black colour (which is why I think they're offering it in black).
     
  6. wrkactjob macrumors 65816

    wrkactjob

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2008
    Location:
    London
    #6
    From the point when the phone rings to you eventually getting it out of that OTT overprotective case the call will have gone to voice mail.

    Nice quality leather n all but scores low on practicality judging by the photos.
     
  7. Nieval thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Mar 13, 2008
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    Reading, U.K.
    #7
    Not really, I usually get it out by the second ring, but I keep it in my pockets.
    I think he main time consumption is getting it out of your pocket (which really applies to all cases) the cover has a snap on the top that comes off & on super easy so that part actaully takes seconds really.
     
  8. wrkactjob macrumors 65816

    wrkactjob

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2008
    Location:
    London
    #8
    So when you actually take a call the front leather facia dangles down or do you take the phone out of the case totally?
     
  9. Nieval thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2008
    Location:
    Reading, U.K.
    #9
    You can flip the cover over so that the front is "kissing" the back or you can let it dongle but you don't need to take it out of the case completely.
    I was apprehensive about this too at first but it's a trade-off that comes with all flap cases I've owned.
     
  10. TheAlchemist macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2009
    #10
    Thanks for the review! Can'twait to receive mine. How long was your total wait from ordering to receiving?
     
  11. walds11 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 30, 2010
    Location:
    Philly, PA
    #11
    Thanks for the reply. I prefer the floater leather as it holds up better with daily wear and tear.

    Where is the little black leather piece that is shown in the pics on Vaja's website? If I can explain it properly, back side near the camera cut-out area). That definitely adds a nice touch.

    How did you get it so quick? There is currently a 45 day production time.

    I still haven't decided between the Top or Grip. The flap is a deal breaker for me, so I am leaning towards the Grip. The Grip is more of a lay down design type case. Obviously it does not offer full protection; mainly back, some of the sides and bottom corner protection. I am not concerned with protection. I want a leather case that looks nice, gives me ease of access and will give me some protection.


     
  12. kr00k322 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2010
    Location:
    Long Beach, CA
    #12
    That's a pretty cool looking box. :cool: Case too..but the box is different (first time seeing one of their products so I wouldn't know if that was a usual thing or not)..
     
  13. Nieval thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2008
    Location:
    Reading, U.K.
    #13
    I got very lucky, with my case. Vaja were friendly enough to send me one out very quickly. You never know you might also get lucky.

    You're right about the endurance of floater, one of the reasons I love this type of leather and I can totally relate about the grip, I thinking of getting one for going out with the lads and not having the flap helps. I plan on using this case for work, in meetings and other times when you need to be more formal looking (i hope that makes sense!)
    I also noticed the black strip missing in this case, but I think they decided to add it to the caternia leather cases for protection as that leather is delicate. I can tell you that even without it the lens aren't flat on the surface when the case is laid down.

    Unfortunately I don't have the old case with me otherwise I'd have posted some comparison shots, perhaps someone could post some pics if they still have theirs.
     
  14. walds11 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 30, 2010
    Location:
    Philly, PA
    #14
    The iVolution Top offers a floater leather as well and the image gallery on Vaja's website shows the black strip. It also shows the black strip on the Grip floater leather. I am going to email Vaja customer service about this. Like I mentioned earlier, the black strip adds a nice touch to the case.

    I want quick access to my iPhone and can see the flap being a pain to deal with, especially when talking on the phone, emailing or surfing the internet. I wear a suit everyday for work. I use a leather or spring clip holster daily, but thought that the Vaja Grip would be a nice alternative.

     
  15. richxps macrumors 65816

    richxps

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    #15
    cant wait to see the phone in this case, can you post some of the case open and closed with the phone in it ?
     
  16. ScubaCinci macrumors 65816

    ScubaCinci

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2008
    Location:
    Cincinnati OH
    #16
    I'm not a fan of the flip-style cases (it gets in the way IMO) but Vaja makes some nice looking cases.
     
  17. Nieval thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Mar 13, 2008
    Location:
    Reading, U.K.
    #17
    Will do, just waiting for a buddy to drop the digital camera off, I took those with the iP4.
     
  18. Jerle macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2010
    #18
    What is the white vaja band behind the case? I hope its just a sticker or brand tag coz it kinda spoil the look of the case XD
     
  19. pablo7 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2008
    Location:
    LOS ANGELES, CA.
    #20
    Those are the ones I want to see.:confused:
     
  20. rkdiddy macrumors 65816

    rkdiddy

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2008
    Location:
    OC Baby!
    #21
    Great review - I enjoyed reading it.

    Looking forward to more pics.

    Cheers!
     
  21. TheSacredSoul macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2010
    #22
    Its not a sticker and its not white. It's metallic and I think it adds style to the whole case. Makes it look more expensive :D

    Cant wait for mine. I ordered mine exactly 3 weeks ago. On the 7th. Still waiting. I hope I get "Order ready for shipment" email any day now since the iPhone is gonna be released at midnight here tonight :D
     
  22. johnc22 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2010
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #23
    I have a green with white stripe Vaja on my 3G and was just about to purchase a Black Series for my iPhone 4 - your pictures put me over the top. Now the 45 days - it will be mid-September before I see it . . . :(
     
  23. walds11 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 30, 2010
    Location:
    Philly, PA
    #24
    45 days is a long time, but seems to be well worth it according to the reviews I have read.

    I am leaning towards the Grip case. It suits my needs better than the Top. More so for the ease of access (no flap). The Grip does not have as much protection as the Top, but it's a stylish and well made case.
     
  24. johnc22 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2010
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #25
    The flap is a personal choice - I've gotten used to it (on my 3G) and like knowing that when it's closed and in my pocket the phone is very well protected. When on a call I just flip it back and hold the entire thing in my hand. Obviously now with a decent camera and flash I'll have to adjust when taking pictures/video.
     

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