Seal Line E-Case Initial Review

13 07 2011

Seal Line Small E-Case...

I’ve spent a lot of time at outdoor stores checking out their waterproof cases in the hopes of finding something I liked for my iPhone. Until I found the Seal Line E-Case there was nothing I could see myself using. My complaints were generally awkward sized cases, hard to use and couldn’t operate phone while inside case. The iPhone’s smooth finish wants to stick like glue to any rubberized surface making sliding it inside a dry bag next to impossible. I had sort of given up hope until I had a breakthrough idea – leave some paper or slippery plastic in the dry bag so the phone can slide on it. This has two benefits:

  • the iPhone slides in relatively easily
  • the other surface holds it nicely in place once inside.

Robust easy to use waterproof opening...

With the addition of a bit of paper the Seal Line E-Case is easy to operate and allows full use of the iPhone including making and receiving calls.  The case is waterproof to 1m for 30mins. Having said that I don’t suggest trusting any case like this for regular submersion of a $700 device. The waterproof zipper can easily be compromised by dirt or you could fail to use it correctly. My plan is to use the E-Case in rain and for accidental submersion like falling off my SUP. The case has a couple loops so you can tether the phone to yourself or your gear. The screen of the phone is much easier to read than it would seem based on my top photo.

A bit of paper on one side of the case is key!

One additional tip is to cut away a small area of the paper/plastic sliding material you use so that the iPhone’s camera is exposed. If not it will think your hand is covering it while talking and the screen won’t light up during a call. The E-Case is offered in 3 sizes. I’m using the small one for my iPhone and they make an iPhone specific case that is marginally wider and a bit taller. They also make a case specifically for the iPad.

I’ve been using Seal Line dry bags while sea kayaking for over a decade with generally good results. I’m hoping this case provides equally positive results. I will report back in a few months.







8 responses

13 07 2011

Also, the paper may absorb some water that can accidentally get in if you open the case outside or, like you said, if the zipper isn’t closed properly.

13 07 2011

I use Sea Line bags in the kayak but haven’t thought about them for my iPhone. I’m using a hard case that works great but is bulky. It’s also cool because I can switch the video camera to record, drop it in the box and hold it under the surface for underwater footage.It’s pretty cool but the hard case doesn’t work for for touching the screen. This would make a great addition for the bike! Thanks for the tip.

13 07 2011

I picked up one of those about a year ago and it kept my phone dry on some epic long runs thru torrential rain. Great form factor – but I’m always a bit worried that the seal will open somehow. I wish that there was a snap on it too to prevent it from opening in a bag (or in my case, waist pack) somehow. Most likely I’m being overly paranoid – but hey, those darn phones are pricey!

13 07 2011

I picked one up a while back and was completely unimpressed. It’s too bulky and even with their reputation I didn’t trust the seal.

Plus it had some sort of grease on it from manufacturing that I didn’t see before putting my phone in and it got all over it.

13 07 2011
Val Garou

I’m very curious to hear your report on this. I saw one on the shelf at the MEC and was pretty curious, but I find the price somewhat punishing. I mean, if you’re taking your iPhone on your SUP, that’s one thing, but for riding in a pannier this is a big mark-up over a Ziploc freezer bag.

Still, I like gear, so I look forward to your evaluation.

14 07 2011

Val – I’ve used ziplock bags many times on rides, tours and while traveling. They work fine in the rain at first and quickly get holes and become useless. Actually worse than useless because if you are not careful you think they are protecting your device and they aren’t so you don’t take the care you should.

There is no point buying a $19 waterproof case for your $700 iPhone unless you have a use for it. If you do have a use for it $19 seems quite reasonable to me for that function.

Bryan – having looked long and hard at all the waterproof iPhone options I haven’t seen a better one.

14 07 2011

I would just add that I’ve broken 2 cameras just from the dampness of being carried around in my jacket pocket when riding – they weren’t exposed to any rain.

14 07 2011

You have a lot of unread emails, Vik! 🙂

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