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OtterBox Armor 1900 PDA Case Reviewed

We all have accidents with some of our expensive toys, but when your work or even your life depends on them you don’t want to take any chances. OtterBox cases are designed for all environmental extremes; rain, snow, dirt, sand, humidity, shock and impact. If you are on the job and collecting important data you don’t want your gear failing. Or if you are in a remote location using your PDA as a GPS, you don’t want a puddle of water to come between you and your way home.

OtterBox has been making heavy-duty protective cases for gadgets of all kinds since about 1996, they protect your expensive gear from all these situations that can be potentially damaging to our equipment. Their PDA cases are without a doubt, the most durable and reliable on the market.

OtterBox sent over the Armor 1900 PDA Case and the OtterBox 8000 protective box, at first I was a bit hesitant to use my real Axim X30 for the tests, but then I thought if this actually destroys my equipment It would make for an interesting report. Of course their products were flawless, the gear was completely intact and in full operating condition. Not only do the cases float and can be submerged, they can withstand impacts on concrete from about four feet in the air.

OtterBox Armor 1900

The Armor 1900 PDA Case is the perfect size for turning your delicate handheld into a rugged beast. The unit consists of three major components, the back, front and top covers. These all lock into place with very tight latches, everything is lined with rubber seals to keep water and moisture out. The top piece is clear, this is to prevent interfere with your wireless components. There is also a circular port that can be opened for a probe or antenna depending on your application.

The back half also has a large rubber removable access port, it is made of thick rubber, when removed it allows for charging or connecting to a computer. An adjustable and removable strap with velcro makes a great handle or for you to wear on your wrist in extreme situations, just like they do in that movie The Day After Tomorrow. A clever little port in the rear center allows for sound to escape, a thin film covers it to keep the water out.

A stylus holder and clear protective flip cover are the first things you notice on the front. I hate how Dell has designed their own stylus shape that coincidentally never stays in place. The Armor 1900 has a nice generic round stylus holder, the rubber is quite tight and grips it nicely so you won’t have to worry about losing it. When lifting the clear cover, you can access your PDA through the watertight membrane. Access to your shortcuts on the front of the PDA are still there, this is great so you don’t have to keep taking the box apart, it even will allow thumbboard access with a Treo.

Inside the Armor 1900 is a Velcro strap that will allow you to securely fit your PDA snugly against the fully sealed interactive screen membrane. These membranes won’t touch your screen at first; you will have to indent the edges around your display screen to get it to fit up against it properly. If you don’t do this, you will have a heck of a time using the touch-screen display. OtterBox sells replacement three packs of the screen savers for $19.95.

OtterBox 8000 Protective Box

The OtterBox 8000 protective box is great to have around for your valuables, wallet, cell phone or anything else you want to keep dry. It comes in a variety of different sizes and colours, the back has a belt clip and a hand strap for you to easily carry or tie down. It will float if dropped in water, and is virtually indestructible. These are quite cheap, at $21.95 for the 8000 series it’s a great investment if you are boating or rafting and would like to protect valuables.

These are both excellent products for extreme situations. If you have a PDA and you want to protect it, the Armor 1900 is a great choice. It’s size and durability cannot be met by any other manufacturer out there, and for $99 it’s like a get out of jail free card for your PDA. Many attachments and addons are available, if you want to mount it to your motorbike handlebars, or on your dashboard, there is a solution for you.

Pros

– Over 50 different PDA models supported
– Lightweight and compact
– Watertight and floats
– Very Durable
– Great price

Cons

– Should come with more than one screen saver and maybe a generic stylus

Additional Photos

About Fabrizio Pilato

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