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

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January 28, 2013 • Reviews

Mophie Outride Review

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We take our iPhones absolutely everywhere. Mophie knows this, and they’ve made their name in offering extended batteries and battery cases. But now they are branching out and pushing more than just batteries. They know you want your iPhone to record the really amazing parts of life-the “Oh man, I wish you could see this”, the “Whoo hoo, that was fun!” and yes, the “Oh crap, I can’t believe I am doing this” adventures. So they created the Mophie Outride, a rugged case, app and mount system so you can record anything, anywhere. Preferably in a place where you would never, ever, normally whip out an iPhone!

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The Outride packaging is honestly a bit intimidating at first. There are mounts for bikes, surfboards, tripods, and sticky mounts for snowboards and skateboards and anyplace else you want to get video. It offers a jaw-dropping amount of flexibility but with many, many parts. This isn’t a case you unpack and use without reading the manual. But Mophie does an amazing job of trying to make it feel less complex; they carefully labeled and organized all the different parts in individual packaging. There’s no sheet explaining you have three of part F and two of part G and parts H and J go into part C…they make it as clear as they can!

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At the heart of the Outride is the case itself. It has two different front plates, one open and one sealed for waterproofing. It takes some effort to swap the plates out, but that’s not a bad thing when you consider that the tight seal also helps keep gunk and water out! Rather than use a built in screen protector, Mophie opted to just seal the screen off entirely. Their companion Outride app can trigger recording with a press of the volume up button (the only button accessible when the phone is totally sealed), but to do so you have to have the app’s camera queued up before you close off the phone. If you use the open face, you can access the home button and the camera’s features through the touchscreen, but there is no power button access with either plate. Mophie also has a website, Outride.com, where you can check out other people’s videos and showcase your own.

Meanwhile, once you have your phone situated in the case you need to mount it on something. You secure either the quick mount or the bike mount on a screw dowel, and use the included Allen wrench to screw everything into place. Once you have your selected mounts attached, it’s time to secure it to your tripod, bike, surfboard, or any other accommodating surface. I have seen other mounts and other rugged cases that have mounting options, but this is the most secure setup I have encountered. The fit and finish are remarkable. Normally if I had a case, even a waterproof one, with a surfboard mount I would chuckle and ask who was crazy enough to trust a mounted iPhone to stay put against a wave…but this case looks and feels like it would encounter the wave and laugh at any attempt to force it to budge.

Here’s a video tour of the Outride and some of the mounting accessories:

Sadly, it is winter in New Jersey, I don’t own a surfboard, and I am boring. So I enlisted the help of someone who is guaranteed to enjoy adventure, even in his own backyard. So Porter, the official Gear Diary tester dog, has agreed use the Outride to get a dog’s eye view of playing catch!

I want to assure everyone that I had the Mophie secured to his harness using the bike mount and the lanyard; nothing was secured to Porter in a dangerous or awkward way that could have hurt him.

The Outride is an impressive bit of equipment. It goes beyond the typical iPhone case into an entire system designed to let you truly record your world, no matter how extreme!

MSRP: $149.95 from Mophie

What I liked: Several mounting options; secure fit around the phone; waterproof and non-waterproof choices; protective cover for the lens included; app rounds out the experience with extra features

What Needs Improvement: Very tight hinge makes unlocking the case tough; switching face plates requires a fair amount of force.

Source: Manufacturer provided review sample

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