Tech, Autos, & Gear in Layman's Terms Since 2006

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June 9, 2011 • Reviews

iPad 2 Case Review: Seidio Active Case for the iPad 2

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I tend to be partial to folio-style cases for my iPad 2, but there is something to be said for some of the more unusual “rugged” cases that offer complete protection AND a removable screen cover. That’s where the Seidio Active case for the iPad 2 comes in. When closed, the case offers complete protection AND it brings along the added benefit that the screen cover can serve double-duty as a multi-angle stand. I’ve been checking one out for the past few days; let’s take a look at it.

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From Seidio:

Created for those that have and want to maintain their active lifestyle, the ACTIVE™ case provides great shock absorption while adding minimal bulk to your Apple iPad 2. This two-layer case features a compact and lightweight rubber polymer with a precisely positioned hard skeleton for added protection on the corners and sides.

Additionally, the multi-purpose protective cover can be placed over the screen to protect your device during transit and can be easily removed and used as a stand to prop up your device.

– Interior casing made from highly durable and shock-absorbing polymer

– Hard exterior skeleton finished with our signature rubberized coating provides extra protection at impact points

– Lightweight case at 3.5 oz

– Mullti-purpose cover shields the screen when iPad 2 is not in use and becomes a built-in stand

– iPad 2 can be propped up in portrait or landscape and can be adjusted in up to 15 different viewing angles

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The main part of the Seidio Active is the two-layer case that wraps completely around the iPad. The interior portion is a lightweight “highly durable and shock-absorbing polymer” while the outer “frame” is a “hard exterior skeleton finished with [the company’s] signature rubberized coating” that holds the lighter portion in place and gives additional, ridged protection.

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As you can see, the outer portion grips the corners and sides and has a vanity spot in the middle so the Apple logo will show through. Happily, the company put a thin protective film there too!

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The soft interior case is quite thin but it has enough thickness to protect the iPad from minor bumps and bruises. It is an excellent fit that took a bit to get on the iPad completely.

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That is not a complaint… Far from it. I love the fact that the fit is tight, since so many soft shells are saggy and loose. That won’t be an issue here in any way, shape or form.

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When the two pieces — the soft inner shell and the outer ridged case — are on the iPad 2, the fit is excellent.

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The case comes up and over the edges of the screen enough to give some “lay on the table” protection without actually getting in the way of the screen. Getting the right balance between those two aspects in a case like this is a challenge, and Seidio got it right.

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Here’s a look at how tightly the two parts of the case fit together.

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And a look at the back.

Personally I don’t love the vanity window that shows off the Apple logo, but I am pleased they made sure to cover it in some manner.

I was struck by the fact that the spots where the soft inner shell “come through”(i.e. – are not covered by the hard shell) are strategically placed in the locations where your hands will most likely try to grab the device. This means you get the great grip and comfortable feel of the soft material rather than the hard plastic shell.

As one would expect in a premium case such as this, all the ports and openings are perfectly placed.

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The case has a neat trick. There is a second outer shell that is just large enough to clip over the full-body protection we just examined. Inside it has a built-in stand; more on that in a minute.

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This second shell can be placed down on the iPad 2 so it will protect the screen.

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The fit is excellent and ensures that this screen protection will not accidentally come off. It is also raised just enough that there is a gap between the iPad’s screen and the interior of the shell. There is no way the two are going to come into direct contact.

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Flip the iPad over when the screen protection is in place and you have an iPad 2 that is completely protected but still screams “iPad!!!!!”.

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At the same time you don’t HAVE to put this second cover on top of the screen. If you want to use the iPad you can remove the cover and clip it on to the back of the iPad for safe-keeping. This does result in a fairly bulky item but it is a great way to not have two separate parts when you are on the go.

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Here is a look at the second shell when clipped on the back of the iPad.

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Then there is the stand. It is permanently affixed to the interior of the screen cover. It snaps up to reveal an amazing 15 different possible positions.

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It can hold the iPad in an exceptionally steep incline…

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Or a rather shallow one that allows for easy typing.

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When the iPad is placed into it the Seidio Active case creates a solid work-base for the tablet. I found that the case edges did not interfere with my accessing the iPad keyboard much at all. In other words, the design is very well conceived and keeps usability in mind.

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Here is the iPad when placed at a steeper angle. Again, the iPad is held securely and is not going to slip.

I like this stand design and appreciate the fact that the iPad can be used in either landscape or portrait.

In all the Seidio Active is a great case that offers good protection while not sacrificing any of the iPad’s usability. The company thought through how to best protect the iPad AND provide added function and this is what they came up with. They did good! 🙂

Sure, the Seidio Active does not have the Smart Cover sleep/awake functionality, but what sense would that make with this case? And yes, it adds some bulk an at $69.95 it isn’t inexpensive but that extra bulk provides a case solution for the iPad 2 that adds to its utility. That is saying quite a lot. You can get details or order the Seidio Active case for the iPad 2 right here on the company web site.

MSRP: $69.95

What I Like: Offers excellent protection; good fit and finish; screen protection doubles as a stand with multiple angles; adds bulk and weight but not as much as you would expect in a case that offers this much protection

What Needs Improvement: Not inexpensive; I personally do not like the vanity window; adds some bulk and weight and any addition undoes some of the gains made form the original iPad to the iPad 2.

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