Tech21 Evo Xplorer
A rugged case for rugged people. Who have an iPhone 6.
- Keeps out water and dust
- Good impact protection
- Small size
- Muffled mic
- Parts can go missing
- Only available for iPhone 6 and 6S
Useful for those who need their iPhone to be rugged all the time. But not casual users.
Price$ 140.00 (AUD)
If you exist in an environment that contains dust, water or a higher-than-usual chance of impact damage then you’ll either need a special rugged phone or a rugged case to put your phone in.
Tech21’s Evo Xplorer is a two piece case that seals your iPhone (6 or 6S) inside and protects it against impact to 2m (IP68 rating). Note that while the raised bezel will protect the screen when dropping on a flat floor, the thin screen protector is unlikely to help much if it lands screen-first on a pointy rock or similar.
The screen protector is nonetheless responsive to touch (unlike others we've tested) so it’s not frustrating when swiping around screens and selecting icons.
There’s naturally a snug fit to the phone and putting the case on and taking it off is quite a chore, so don’t expect to be doing this regularly.
The buttons on the side are still operable – the 'silence switch' becomes a dial while the volume and power buttons are the same but are now quite hard to press.
At the bottom there’s a screw cap cover the headphones port. This can be removed and a separate adapter can be inserted to allow you to connect your headphones. Both the cover and adapter went missing very quickly for us unfortunately. While we know they’re buried in an office somewhere, it does go to show that if you’re using this in the field and misplace these small and fiddly items, much of the protection afforded by this case is suddenly rendered useless.
There’s a sturdy cover over the Lightening connector port too. It’s very solid and hard work to open and close though it should loosen up over time. This might also rule it out for kids who will struggle to open it at all without help.
However, this was the main issue. The cover really needs to be open to make a phone call otherwise the microphone is muffled. Our tester found that even with this slot open she was having to shout to make herself heard on regular phone calls and that this got annoying quickly.
Ultimately the case does what it says it does and will be boon for the certain demographics who need the protection, can live with regular, fiddly port openings, don’t mind shouting and who don't mind paying the massive price. For the regular consumer, the protection won't be worth the muffled microphone, fiddly port openings or the money.
Join the newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 HP Envy x360 13 (Ryzen): Full, in-depth review
- 2 Dell G5 review: Easy to live with
- 3 D-Link Omna 180 Cam HD DSH-C310 review
- 4 Ring Video Doorbell review
- 5 Sony Bravia 2017 TVs: Full, in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- PAX Australia 2019 tickets go on sale
- Intel kills the Compute Card, a small-form-factor modular computing product that didn't stick
- 15 years later, Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2 is finally happening
- Your Steam library is getting a massive visual overhaul this summer
- The Epic Games Store won't always push for exclusives 'at this scale'
PCW Evaluation Team
This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.
Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications
I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)
It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!
The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.
I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.
- Everything we (already) know about the Samsung Galaxy S10, S10e, S10+ and Galaxy F
- Razer Phone 2 review: One for the fans
- Samsung’s Galaxy S10 will launch on Feb 20
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies