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Best alternative to Otterbox Defender case with easy access to dock connector?

Discussion in 'iPad Accessories for iPAD 1, 2 and 3' started by outbackyak, Jan 13, 2011.

  1. outbackyak
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    outbackyak iPF Novice

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    I need a rugged case for my new iPad. I'm intending to use it for location recording of spontaneous interviews, and of found sounds (i.e. samples of industrial noise etc for music production). This will take me into some environments where a tough case is a must. I'm also a klutz - if I can break, drop, or screw something up, I probably will, sooner rather than later.

    The Otterbox Defender seemed the answer, until I saw reviews that say you have to remove the whole bottom section simply to access the dock connector. This is a deal-killer for me - I'll be connecting my microphone via the Camera Connector Kit, so I need easy access to the dock connector - something like a removable silicone plug.

    On the Otterbox web site it says that there are such silicone plugs - have they changed the design so that you no longer have to remove the bottom section?

    However, even if the design has changed, the additional fact that people have reported that headphone connection can be a problem if using 1/4 inch to mini-jack connectors, and that there is no way to attach a strap were also downers.

    But reports that the case markedly decrease both wi-fi and 3G signal strength were the last straw.

    Is there an alternative rugged case that addresses all of my concerns, one which will be as rugged as the Defender, but allow easy access to all ports, with a strap, and which does not decrease wi-fi and 3G receptivity? Or am I simply asking for the impossible?
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2011
  2. Pocobear
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    Pocobear iPad Junkie

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    The panel you have to remove is small but, big enough to allow you to use the Apple dock and comes off easily. Their are 1/4" to mini jack converters that will fit just fine. I have seen little to no drop in wifi or 3g using the case and I live in a fringe area for 3g. Any case especially the metal type will drop it some, but not much. I also use the cck to attach a Samson-G mic and have no problems. Their are a few cases that may provide as much protection as the Defender and more coming out weekly so shop around, read reviews and, please, read between the lines, as there are so many nay sayers out there that knock good products they have never even tried.
  3. Spink10
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    Spink10 iPad Junkie

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    Defender is a beast the port comes off easy - if you can make it work you will love it.
  4. outbackyak
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    outbackyak iPF Novice

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    @ Pocobear & JohnLande.

    That's very reassuring news on all fronts - thank you both.

    I've asked a question about these issues on the Otterbox web site, but am yet to receive a reply.

    If I can get a reassurance from Otterbox that the issues I've raised are not going to interfere with my intended use I'll probably get the Defender - in all other respects it has an excellent rep, apart from the assembly instructions being hard to follow, and it being a lint-magnet.

    The only other complaint I regularly see is people complaining it's too heavy - what do they expect? The thing is built like a tank, and that's just what I need. It's a pity Otterbox don't have attachment points for a strap, but I can live without a strap.

    Cheers!

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