gadg-et-oid [gaj-it-oid]


1. having the characteristics or form of a gadget;
resembling a mechanical contrivance or device.

SENA Magnet Flipper iPhone 3g Flip Case Review

The second of five SENA cases waiting patiently in line for the Gadgetoid review treatment is the SENA MagnetFlipper. If the name didn’t give you a clue then it’s a magnet-secured flip case for the iPhone 3G.

The MagnetFlipper is one of my favourite cases from SENA, it’s well designed, secures the iPhone better than most other cases and flips down so you don’t have to worry about maneuvering the flap around a headphone jack or folding it behind the case when talking on the phone.

The sample we were sent is in a fetching burgundy, imitation crocodile skin style which I’ll readily admit to finding quite attractive. Far more so than traditional tan leather, anyway.

The Magnet Flipper sets itself aside from ever other case I have covered thus far by having a second, popper clasped flap that secures the iPhone 3G perfectly into the case. This extra flap is doubly necessary because the main flap of the case does not itself serve this purpose. Having the iPhone secured on the top also makes it very easy to unclasp and slide out the phone without opening up the case. It’s even possible, albeit a little tricky, to remove the iPhone from the case without removing the case from your pocket. Very handy if you’re an avid “naked” iPhone user but want that extra protection when you’re stuffing it into your pocket.

Unlike the Piel Frama or SENA flip cover cases with poppers that I have covered there’s no way to jerry-rig the Magnet Flipper to stand the iPhone upright on your desk. You might laugh that I mention this, but I like to keep my iPhone on silent and thus need it stood upright in front of my face to notice that it’s ringing or received a text message.

The flap is secured with two magnets which squeeze in along the lop-sided cut out that has to provide access to the ear-speaker, light sensor and proximity sensor.

Every case is physically different, the sample sent demonstrated excellent workmanship with stitching so well matched to the colour of the case that I could barely see it. The cut-outs for the speaker and microphone in the bottom of the case, and the flap line up almost perfectly. The camera cut-out lines up almost perfectly with the camera which is quite a feat considering it’s a good 1-2mm smaller than those on the Piel Frama and Krusell flip cases.

I have a severe lack of a camera at the moment, so excuse the poor photos. This is a comparison of the SENA Magnet Flipper, Piel Frama Flip Case and Krusell Flip Case camera cut-outs. SENA have achieved almost dead on accuracy with a smaller hole. Of course, your mileage may vary with every case being hand-made and potentially different.

The fit around the volume control is somewhat less perfect and the sides of the case, where the iPhone fits incredibly snugly, still bulge out a little bit after several weeks of use. These issues detract somewhat from the overall fit and finish of the case but may get better as the leather wears in, only time will tell.

So! I’ve finished obsessing over the workmanship of the SENA Magnet Flipper. If your eyes glazed over during the last few paragraphs then suffice to say that: it’s good. The Magnet Flipper is certainly amongst my favourite iPhone cases with the tiny, tiny caveat that I’ve actually managed to de-magnetize a rail card once when heading into London for the Microsoft Christmas Showcase. Whoops.

If good looks, good workmanship and no pesky popper are what your heart desires for an iPhone case then this is a great option. Crocodile skin aside it’s available in a variety of traditional leather styles and garish colour choices including, of course, pink. The SENA Magnet Flipper will set you back a hefty £40+ in our current financial turmoil, but why not treat your fancy phone to a fancy case this Christmas?

Monday, December 8th, 2008, iPhone.