iPhone 4 Gear Review: monCarbone Magnet Force Carbon Fiber Case

iPhone 4 Gear Review: monCarbone Magnet Force Carbon Fiber Case

monCarbone has made a name for themselves with their beautiful and protective carbon fiber iPhone and iPad cases, which we’ve reviewed in the past. I was recently sent their new Magnet Force iPhone 4 Carbon Fiber Case, and while at first glance this case might appear similar to the monCarbone HoverCoat, I would soon see the Magnet Force’s claim to fame in action.

The Magnet Force adds barely any weight or bulk to the iPhone 4; just like the HoverCoat Dan and I reviewed last November, it is so inconspicuous that you might even forget that you are using a case. It is seriously the next best thing to naked, but much more fashionable.

iPhone 4 Gear Review: monCarbone Magnet Force Carbon Fiber Case

The monCarbone Magnet Force features:

  • Cleverly designed case with embedded slim yet powerful magnet which easily adheres to any magnetic surface.
  • Proprietary technology enables seamless integration of unique carbon fiber composite.
  • Elegant, rich minimalism ensures subtle statement while complimenting iPhone beauty.
  • Reinforced scratch resistant finish ensures product longevity.
  • New design assists in prevention of antenna interference.
  • New UV resistant feature prevents discoloration under sunlight.
  • Aerospace material provides sports car styling and luxury comforts.
  • Intelligent design offers open access to all ports and controls.
  • Reinforced scratch resistant finish ensures product longevity.
  • Precision engineering provides high tensile strength more durable than steel.

The Magnet Force is composed of Carbon Fiber material which has been shaped and then coated with a shiny hard resin. The result is a custom fit case that protects the iPhone’s corners and back. The shell is held in place by friction; it fits the iPhone securely without the use of clips or sliders. Of course, the carbon fiber’s pattern is the star of the show here, and little is done to obscure your view of all that premium woven goodness.

There are generous openings at the top and bottom of the iPhone, so there is no worry when using this case that a particular cable or earphone jack won’t fit. The Magnet Force is so slim that the iPhone may not need to be removed when you want to place it in most docks; I have the Stem Time Command alarm clock dock, and my iPhone works perfectly with it.

iPhone 4 Gear Review: monCarbone Magnet Force Carbon Fiber Case

And here’s the best part: due to its wide cutout where the mute switch and volume buttons are, the Magnet Force fits both the AT&T & Verizon model iPhones.

iPhone 4 Gear Review: monCarbone Magnet Force Carbon Fiber Case

The edges of the Magnet Force do not come up past the iPhone’s sides, so there is no face-down protection when you place the iPhone on a table; the best solution is a good screen protector, if you are concerned.

The inside of the shell has a fuzzy velour patch which rests against the iPhone’s back; I figure that material may add a bit of a buffer in a crash. On the opposite side of the patch, and on the back side of the case …

iPhone 4 Gear Review: monCarbone Magnet Force Carbon Fiber Case

… is an embedded magnet that has a brushed metal finish. I’ll admit that my first concern was that the magnet might somehow affect the iPhone’s signal or possibly its compass. I did not find that to be the case on my AT&T version, and a friend of mine with a Verizon iPhone 4 hasn’t had any issues, either. Actually, the placement of a magnet on the back of the case begs the question “why?” After all, putting the magnet on the back keeps the iPhone from resting completely level on a tabletop; because it is present, there is a slight yet noticeable wobble.

iPhone 4 Gear Review: monCarbone Magnet Force Carbon Fiber Case

Well here’s the answer: if you have ever wished you could stick your iPhone somewhere at eye-level, perhaps on the fridge while mixing a recipe, or on the filing cabinet next to your desk — or in your locker at school (do kids still have lockers?), you now have the case that can do it. The magnet is strong enough that I never worried my iPhone wouldn’t be held securely, so it’s a pretty cool trick, even if not one everyone will need or would use.

iPhone 4 Gear Review: monCarbone Magnet Force Carbon Fiber Case

The good news is that the magnet is unobtrusive enough that if you don’t ever need it, you won’t be bothered by its presence … but should the time ever arrive when you do want it, you’ll be glad that it was there. =)

The monCarbone Magnet Force iPhone 4 Carbon Fiber Case is available directly from the manufacturer.

MSRP: $59.99

What I Like: Sleek, slim and strong, the Magnet Force is beautiful and adds hardly any weight or bulk to the iPhone 4; the magnet is a handy feature that allows the iPhone to be securely placed upon a metal surface for viewing;

What Needs Improvement: Because of the magnet on the back, the case does not lie flat upon the table; there is no face-down screen protection on the front of the case, so you’ll likely want to combine this with a screen protector

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About the Author

Judie Lipsett Stanford
Judie is the co-owner and Editor-in-Chief of Gear Diary, which she founded in September 2006. She started in 1999 writing software reviews at the now-defunct smaller.com; from mid-2000 through 2006, she wrote hardware reviews for and co-edited at The Gadgeteer. A recipient of the Sigma Kappa Colby Award for Technology, Judie is best known for her device-agnostic approach, deep-dive reviews, and enjoyment of exploring the latest tech, gadgets, and gear.

2 Comments on "iPhone 4 Gear Review: monCarbone Magnet Force Carbon Fiber Case"

  1. Carbon fiber composites are only strong in 2 directions. I wonder how strong these cases are compared to plain plastic cases. I also worry about magnets getting near my credit cards. Still, I work with composites every day, so it would be cool to have this case, if only for the looks.

  2. @JohnKes – it’s tough to say how these compare to plastic, especially since I have dropped my iPhone while using both and had good results (luckily). But it is true that a magnet next to credit cards would be an issue, so it would be best to carry your iPhone in a separate pocket from your cash & cards.

    You can still get the HoverCoat through, if you want carbon fiber without the magnet. It looks like they are on sale, too — $49.99!


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