BlackBerry Case Review: Seidio Super Slim Crystal Case and Holster for BlackBerry 8300 Series

By Gary Mazo on 24 Mar 2008 11:38 am EDT
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Seidio Crystal Case and Holster for the BlackBerry Curve Series

This review will take a look at two products that are really designed to go together from Seidio; Their Slim Crystal Case and their Rubberized Holster designed for holding a “skinned” or “cased” BlackBerry Curve.

As I have stated previously, the Curve is almost too pretty to cover up – but it is too nice not to be protected. The Seidio Crystal Case offers a way of doing both – protecting the body of the Curve while still allowing the color and style to show through.

The holster just makes sense for those who like to carry their BlackBerry on their belt and want the features of the “in holster” profile on their BlackBerry.

About Seidio

Seidio is one of the world's leading developers and manufacturers of SmartPhone and PDA accessories and enhancements that enable users to utilize their devices to their full potential.

Founded in Houston, Texas in 2002, Seidio has grown into the leading developer and manufacturer of PDA and Smartphone accessories. Seidio offers solutions that enable users to get the most out of their devices, such as extended battery life, outward protection, syncing and charging options, and extended memory for devices.

Here is the “Company Line” on both products:

Seidio Super Slim Crystal Case for BlackBerry 8300 Series

At only 1mm thick, this crystal clear case is designed to perfectly fit the contours and shape of your BlackBerry Curve 8320, Curve 8310, or Curve 8300.

The lightweight case is completely transparent and has a smooth surface that not only will protect your phone from everyday wear and tear, but will allow for easy insertion and removal from your pocket or purse. This sleek case has cut-outs for the screen, speaker, antenna, headset port and the keyboard is also left uncovered for easy accessibility.

  • Ultra thin design
  • Cuts-outs for speaker and antenna
  • Uncovered keyboard & screen for easy access
  • Lightweight

Seidio Crystal/ Rubberized/ Skin Case Holster for BlackBerry 8300 Series

Innovative and well designed, this holster will protect and fit your skinned or cased BlackBerry Curve 8320, Curve 8310, or Curve 8300 perfectly!

This holster will allow you to easily remove your BlackBerry Curve 8320, Curve 8310, or Curve 8300 from the top instead of the bottom and your Blackberry is carried facing inward against a soft velvet material safe guarding your phone's screen from everyday wear and tear.

This functional holster also includes a 360 degree ratcheting belt clip and has a sleeper function.

  • Easy removal
  • Inward facing for more protection
  • 360 degree ratcheting belt clip
  • Sleeper function

NOTE: THIS HOLSTER IS FOR A SKINNED OR CASED BlackBerry Curve 8320, Curve 8310, or Curve 8300.

Design and Function

Seidio Crystal CaseCrystal Case: The Crystal case is designed to be “transparent” in virtually every way. The goal is for you to be able to hold and carry your BlackBerry Curve and keep it protected without it looking or feeling like it is in a case. Now, that is a pretty tall order – but Seidio does a pretty good job here. The case is a two piece design that snaps together around the Curve. Small “clips” on the sides keep the case together – so tightly in fact that this is very difficult to remove. 

The good news is that all the ports and openings and buttons of the Curve are easily accessible with this case. This clear case seems to be “thinner” than those from the competition. The advantage to that is that the Mute/Standby button on the top was readily accessible as were the convenience keys – this has not always been the case with “hard” case designs.

8300 Crystal Case side

There were also no rough edges on this case – even the openings were smooth to the touch.

Holster: The Rubberized Holster is a pretty basic design. The “skinned” or “Cased” BlackBerry inserts “Face In” into the holster and is secured by protruding edges on the bottom and a “clip” on the top. I found the BlackBerry to be quite secure when it was inserted in this holster.

On the back of the Holster is a very secure feeling belt clip that rotates for either vertical or horizontal usage. Both the spring mechanism and the ratchet mechanism seem to be quite secure and are made of a quality ABS plastic.

Holster with Crystal Case

One very nice feature is that this Holster includes the requisite “magnet” in the strategic spot so the BlackBerry goes into “holster” mode in your profile. If you are not aware, your profile menu allows you to set the ring/vibration features for messaging both in and out of the holster. By default, the holster is set to “vibrate” instead of playing a tune – assuming you are out in a public place or in a meeting – ut these can all be changed in your profile menu.

Fit and Finish

Crystal Case: The Fit and Finish of the Crystal case was great. As I said above, there were no rough edges to worry about and no visible seams. The cutouts were perfect. The feel was smooth and slippery – but I think this is unavoidable in a clear, plastic case.

Holster: The Holster seems quite solid by design. The plastic is quite durable and smooth. Once secured, this was very sturdy.

Protection: Both the Crystal Case and the Holster offer great protection for the BlackBerry Curve. The Case protects the BlackBerry from scratches (although there is no screen protection on this one) and bumps and bruises. If my BlackBerry were to fall to the ground in this case – my best guess is that the worst case scenario would be the case might crack – but it should absorb the impact and protect the BlackBerry. Put the Blackberry in the Crystal Case and then in the Holster and you might just have the ideal solution for your BlackBerry – protected, but still able to see the color, minimal bulk and “holstered” when desired.

Overall Conclusions

Crystal Case: The Seidio Crystal Case seems to be the best of the bunch when it comes to Clear, See Through cases. It is thin, so you have access to all the buttons, convenience keys and ports and it is hard – so it will protect against scratches and bumps. My only gripe with this case is that once put on the BlackBerry, it is no easy task to remove it, which is a required task if you ever need to pull your battery or access your MicroSD card.

Holster: The Seidio Rubberized Holster is a great option for those who have a “skinned” case or are using the Seidio Crystal Case. When the BlackBerry is secured in the holster it is very tight and safe. Removing the BlackBerry from the Holster is easy. The rotating clip is also a nice touch.

Seidio Case and Holster Review Summary:
Seidio Crystal Case and Rubberized Holster for the Curve
Ratings

Pros:

  • Good Protection
  • Good Style
  • Built with Sturdy Materials

Cons:

  • Tough to remove the Crystal Case once attached to BlackBerry
More Info and Purchase:

Reader comments

BlackBerry Case Review: Seidio Super Slim Crystal Case and Holster for BlackBerry 8300 Series

19 Comments

Are you still able to use the BB Charging Pod with this case? It looks like there is a cutout for the contacts on the back, but I wasn't sure about the fit.

I have the same setup, except I opted for the Rubberized Hard Case as opposed to the Crystal Case. I like the feel of the rubberized hard case, it's kind of like the sides of the Curve. I have never felt like it will drop out of my hands with this case. But, it does cover up a lot of the beauty of the Curve.

I wouldn't recommend using the holster without a case on the Curve. After a few months of usage, I can notice a small wear spot on the top of my case where the clip holds it in. I think there was another review that mentioned damage to the Curve from the holster without a hard case. But with the case, there's not a whole lot to worry about (just a small barely noticeable wear spot).

The hard case is a life saver too. I have dropped my Curve on a few occasions and there isn't a scratch on it. The case has held up very well too.

As for the Crystal Case being hard to remove, I noticed that too with my rubberized case. I have noticed that it becomes easier to remove over time if you take it off and put it back on a dozen times or so. I can usually remove it with my fingers now, but it is still a tight fit and not in any danger of falling out by itself.

Another drawback to the case is that you will not be able to use the OEM BlackBerry Power Station with it. The case makes it too wide to fit into the charging cradle. But Seidio has recently released a new charging cradle for the Curve and it works great. It even has an adapter so that it can accept a Curve with or without a case. It has the same rubberized coating on it (a nice touch).

Like mentioned in the article, access to the battery and the MicroSD card are a problem, but hopefully the won't have to be accessed too often.

I really like the magnet in the holster that puts my Curve into Holster mode. I also like the fact that the swivel clip on the holster has seven locking positions so that you can choose the angle/direction that is best for you.

All in all, I think this is a great offering from Seidio whether you choose the Crystal or Rubberized hard case with the holster.

I have a similiar question as the earlier person. Does the Blackberry charge in the docking station with the crystal case on the 8300? I hav had other items that prohibit the contacts from connecting. Also how easy is the crystal case to remove when a battery or SD card needs to be changed?

This is a great looking case and holster combo. I just don't understand why Seidio would have a cut-out for the screen. It's already clear plastic - why not cover the screen for protection as well? Seidio's cases look like a quality product, but lack of screen protection may be a deal breaker for me when I go to spend my $50. The vinyl-like screen covers are not what I'm looking for. I want impact protection, not just scratch protection. I like the looks of Seidio, but my money may have to go to Otterbox.

I have the same case for the Pearl....and love it. Only I went with the Hybrid for the black back. Very nice!

Great review!

I just wanted to say I am very happy with my purchase. I've had the holster for my curve for about a week and I love it.

The first time I saw my friend had one on his pearl I immediately knew after looking it over it was a superior design. It impressed me on first glance. The design is very well thought out, and minimalistic. Hovever it does more than I expected. 5 out of 5.

; )

I have the Seidio Super Slim Crystal Case and I love it. I've dropped my BB numerous times, even on concrete, and it was just fine thanks to the case. The holster sounds great too, but I just keep my BB either in my purse or pocket. Great review!

I've noticed many believe the Speck cover is better because it covers the screen, however, the screen protection usually ends up hurting your berry instead of protecting it by trappind small pieces of debris and sand which end up digging into your scrren, scratching it up. I bought this case and after one week the front screen cover was so scratched up, it warped the middle of my view of the screen, and when I took it off, I saw it had scratched my screen up! YOu should visit the followint link to Crackberry's review of the Speck cover, travel to the end of the post, where others put their opinions, and see how many people had the same experience as myself.
http://crackberry.com/blackberry-case-review-speck-products-seethru-case...

Is the crystal cover large enough to accomodate the extended battery that Seido sells? I like the idea of the clear hardshell, but if it isn't going to fit over the extended battery I'm going to choose the extra lifetime vs. a scratchless 8320. Any other thoughts or comments out there?

J. Rasimas
BB 8320
PIN 242315A0

I use a hard case purchased off ebay for $5. (nice candy apple red) It does not protect the screen, but instead i use a screen protector film for a PSP. Cut to size it fits right under the lip of the plastic case and nothing can get trapped under it. The PSP protector film seems harder and thicker than others out there and cost about $8 - cut in half for two uses.

is the 8830 curve and the 8830 world edition
same design? I have a world edition and I fear
buying something for the curve. When I first got it
I bought batteries, that's when I learned there
were two 8830's and batteries were not the same.

The 8830 is not the Curve. The Curve is the 83xx series which includes the 8330. The 88xx series is the World Edition. So this case would not fit your 8830 World Edition phone.

After searching for a case and holster to secure my Curve by reading a lot of reviews on the internet, I found this original review and got the feeling that Seidio made the best quality combo set.

I had seen the Speck clear case and holster at a T-Mobile store for $10. The store salesman let me take it out of the package so I was able to examine it closely. The quality of the clear plastic seemed a bit brittle and scratch prone. The case did cover the lcd display which I thought provided great protection, but it looked like this area already had a scratch on it from the factory, and it was still brand new. The plastic looked a bit un even so I wondered if this would distort visibility of the lcd. I can see how if this area gets scratch up, you would need to replace the whole case as the visibility of your screen suffers. The case looked like it fit together a bit rough, and felt as if I’d drop it, it would crack apart.

After finding this review on Crackberry, I got excited that this would be a quality product. I kept trying to find reviews of similar designs on the web, but ended up coming back to this review of Seidio. After a couple of days of not finding anything better, I decided to buy the Seidio hybrid case with the holster set. To protect the screen from scratches, I ordered their film screen protector too. It was a bit pricey as the package came out to about $60 for everything. This was expensive because after rebate, I only paid $50 for the Blackberry curve itself.

I was excited to get the Seidio set. After close inspection, I could see that it was built with quality materials. The plastic front is very clear and didn’t feel brittle. The rubberized back has a nice soft texture, but it is still a bit slippery and does not provide a tacky confident grip while holding the unit. The face and back of the case do snap together perfectly at the seams and covers the Curve form tightly within its shell.

I think it looks very nice, however the edges around the keypad are a bit too high makes it difficult to press the “shift, alt, a & q” buttons on the left side of the keyboard and the “shift, return, delete, and p” buttons on the right side of the keyboard. I may have to shave this area down myself just to be able to access those keys easier while typing. I thought that the exposed area above the lcd display showing the Blackberry logo should be covered by the clear plastic case as well.

The holster is made with good quality plastic as well. The rotating belt clip is solid. I love that they included the magnet inside the holster to make use of the feature to turn off/on the lcd screen when you put your curve away or take it out. The only thing I didn’t like about the holster is the spring clip that is supposed to secure it in place doesn’t work very well.

I like to carry the curve horizontally on my belt and it is very easy to accidently brush your hand / arm / coat / anything over the spring clip and release the Curve. I’ve had the unit for a couple of weeks and I’ve unintentionally released the Curve from the holster several times already. Once I carried books and it brushed against the holster and I didn’t even know that it released my Curve until I heard it clacking down upon a cafeteria floor. At lease the case is pretty good quality as my Curve has not yet broken from the several drops that it has taken.

Since then, I always feel a slight anxiety while wearing the Curve inside the holster and find my hand often feels for the Curve to make sure it’s still there.

I like the slimness, style and quality construction of the Seidio set, but I think the design can be enhanced to make it the best solution. Until then, I wish it could be more secure so I’m still keeping my eyes open for something better.

I was looking at this case and holster but was going to add the extended battery to it. Anyone know if it'll fit? I know seidio makes a cradle for the curve to charge using the contact leads on the back but their site says it doesn't work with any of their cases on the device. Isn't that a little pointless / odd to you? If they make the extended battery, cover and case, you'd think they'd integrate that into the charger for those who want to charge via the contact leads?

These Seidio cases and clips are good for a hardcore 4-6 months of abuse. The case will eventually have difficulty staying together and the top clip that holds the phone in place will eventually break...but please understand. I ABUSED mine. They are worth the price and work very nice.

The Siedio Innocase is very stylish for corporate and dining functions. I really like the look of this case and the feel I get in my hands when working on it. The spring-clip works well but I do see the point others make about brushing across it, however I haven't had that arise YET. It has taken a hit direct to the floor on concrete clip and all as I whacked it on a door frame in passing (there was a little horseplay going on). It survive unscaved. The only recommendation I would ask for is possibly rubberized button covers or possibly corner covers for impact protection but that would take from the sleek styling.

The Otterbox is it's home most of the time. I've kicked this one around a while and have had excellent preformance.
I work in the manufacturing environment and as a Volunteer Fireman. I have dropped my curve more than a few times, fortunately it was protected well with the box. The plastic covering does hinder typing a bit.

All and all I really like the look and feel of the Seidio case and clip. Worth the money I just can't quite trust it with my jobs abuse without screen and button protection.

I have a question. If I went to Tmobile store and bought a Skinned cover would that still work on this holder?