DRO Concepts Carbon Fiber 3G iPhone Case Review

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My wife tends to toss her phone in her computer bag with her keys, pager, wallet, and everything else. So, when her new 3G iPhone arrived, we both agreed her fancy new phone required a great case strong/durable enough to protect it. The DRO Concepts Carbon Fiber 3G iPhone Case seemed like a worthy contender for this very difficult task.

This DRO Concepts case is constructed of a rigid, extremely strong carbon fiber similar to many motorcycle parts and accessories. DRO Concepts manufactures this case out of 4 layers of genuine carbon fiber. It is lined with neoprene to pad the iPhone. This case is definitely durable, rock-solid, and will protect the iPhone if dropped.

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DRO Concepts kindly includes a decent screen protector (comparable to Brando) and microfiber polishing cloth. The screen protector is a D-shield Anti-static screen guard. It was easily applied and did not cause any distortions to the screen.

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The iPhone slides into the top of the case. It was a tight fit, I was very concerned that I would (at the very least) scratch the screen. The case has an open-face front. The cutout is the exact size of the screen and button. The additional screen cutout for the speaker is over three times the speaker size. It is essentially larger for aesthetic reasons. The back of the case has circular cutouts for the camera and apple emblem. There is no beltclip option for this case.

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The top of the case cutout provide access to the power button and earphone jack. In order to install the iPhone the case is slightly wider and longer than the iPhone.

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The left side allows access to the volume controls and vibrate/mute switch.

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The bottom of the case has the opening for the iPod connector.

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As I said, the case is a few millimeters larger than the iPhone. Although this is needed to put the phone in the case, it causes the iPhone to slide up and down in it. When the iPhone is pushed to the bottom of the case, it covers the lower section of the iPhone face. The case needs to be adjusted in order to touch the bottom of the screen when using an application. It also makes it difficult to push the home button.

Although the DRO Concepts case is high-tech looking and constructed of a extremely durable carbon fiber, the sliding around of the iPhone within the case irritated my wife. So much so, she put her old case back on the iPhone. To add insult to injury, the removal of the case scratched the screen protector significantly, requiring it to be replaced. This case is great protection for the iPhone but it is a shame that is not a bit more form fitting.

 

Product Information

Price:$84.95
Manufacturer:DRO Concepts
Pros:
  • Durable carbon fiber case
  • Great protection
  • Lined with neoprene
  • Screen protector provided
Cons:
  • Case allows iPhone to slide around
  • Case can scratch device
  • Expensive
Posted in: iPhone, iPad, iPod

13 comments… add one

  • Tyler Puckett January 4, 2009, 2:04 pm

    The case needs to be open around the headphone because that is where the proximity sensor (to detect when you have the phone against your head) and the ambient light sensor (to detect when the screen needs to brighten or dim) is. Just FYI, it’s not just form, it’s also function. :)

    1
  • Dave Rees January 4, 2009, 8:01 pm

    Tyler,

    That is a great point. It did not occur to me.

    Thanks
    Dave

    2
  • Mike January 5, 2009, 3:21 pm

    $85 is waaay too much for any phone case. Especially one that ugly.

    3
  • Andrew January 8, 2009, 6:20 pm

    If you are looking for carbon fiber case of iPhone 3G, take a look this site. cretouch.com. They sell it for $19.99 which is way cheapter than $85. The case is slim design and nice fit for iPhone 3G.

    4
  • CJ January 21, 2009, 10:47 am

    Price and aesthetics are opinions. Personally, I wouldn’t mind purchasing one and like the look. As far as cretouch goes, I don’t see any carbon fiber cases there.

    5
  • Jason L. January 24, 2009, 2:31 pm

    I ordered one of these. It is a very nice case, but the one I received had a fatal flaw. When I slid the phone into it, it cracked down the seam on the volume rocker side.

    DRO took it back and issued me a credit. I never tried another one, as the cracking cemented my perception of the case.

    6
  • alanszabojr February 23, 2009, 1:10 pm

    I’ve purchased of of these cases and totally love it! By far my favorite case out of the 8 cases I’ve already bought. Someone said something above about the proximity sensors…. The case does not interfere with these at all. All the auto screen backlight adjustment and auto off when answering a call all works perfectly with this case on my phone.

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  • Dan June 10, 2009, 7:36 pm

    I bought one of these cases about 2 months ago. As far as fit and functionality, the case is perfect. But there are some things I found about it that i really dont like. First there is a seam where the two sides of the case are put together, this is a terrible design flaw. This so-called super protective case broke apart at the seam when doing nothing more than sliding my phone into it.I have sent DroConcepts four emails from three different email addresses and i have not gotten a single reply. I thought that a case costing almost $100 would last me longer than 2 months. I could go to the mall buy a $10 dollar case from a kiosk and have it last longer. Secondly, and this was something i noticed on the first day, CARBON FIBER BLOCKS CELL RECEPTION! My phone displays my cell signal strength numericly (1 to 100) and I found that the case can block up to 20% of the signal. In low signal areas I have to take my phone out of the case if I want to make or receive any calls.

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  • Campbell June 16, 2009, 4:17 am

    I bought the CF iPhone 3G case from DRO Concepts 2 months ago… but they sent me the silver version. So I returned the silver CF case the same day … but they refuse to credit my AMEX and have not returned any of my emails. I am going to report them to the small business bureau and have AMEX contact them.

    Don’t buy from DRO Concepts!!!

    9
  • Poey October 12, 2009, 9:43 pm

    I would say! I’m really disappointed about this iphone carbon fiber case. It’s not supposed to be tbat expensive! $15.00 to $15.99 is the right prize! The quality is very poor tbe fitting is the worsiest part, it took me one week to figure it out! And extra two days to make it fit right! Whoever! Is the designer on this cases your good! But you need to go back to school! To learn how to Measure right! This is not a joke!

    10
  • Webber October 17, 2009, 6:12 pm

    I read on another blog they are under new ownership and trying to turn things around. I got mine just a few days ago and it took it took 4 days with Fed-ex (I’m in Cali). I don’t know what Poey means about “took me a week to figure it out”. The case is a simple slider style case that clips together. DRO’s website and a couple of videos on youtube show exactly how it works. Personally it seems like overkill protection wise, but I really like the neoprene liner and the cosmetics of this thing are GREAT! I just bought one for my wife too :)

    11
  • Chris June 22, 2011, 9:40 pm

    This company has the worst customer service I’ve ever experienced hands down! Dro concepts will not call you back, respond to emails, or more importantly deliver what you order. I ordered a case a month ago still not a word. They will make up lies like it’s been shipped(If you call them)…. They are EXCELLENT however at taking your order, charging your card for items that they don’t carry & most likely outsource to china to manufacture.
    Buyer beware! They are in indiana but there customer service is in San Diego, CA.??? You will never talk to the company, just some phone jockey who will feed you lies. I should have searched for there company first. Just Google Dro concepts in Indiana it doesn’t exist, no address, no business & no phone number!

    Just rename the company Dro-Con and drop the cepts.

    12
  • Jamie North December 11, 2012, 11:04 am

    It’s a SCAM, Do not buy from DRO Concepts. Check out their facebook page, they take peoples money and don’t send them a product. I think they are out of business, but still stealing peoples Money.

    13

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