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Review: XtremeMac TuffWrap Case for iPhone 4

The XtremeMac TuffWrap for iPhone 4 ($10) is a cookie-cutter silicone rubber case of the type that anyone with a contact in the world of Chinese manufacturing and a few thousand dollars in capital can have made. We’ve seen a million of this molded rubber cases (and a billion thin hard-plastic cases), and the XtremeMac does little to distinguish itself from the pack. The case is made from the type of silicone rubber that attracts and won’t let go of dust and lint. A loose fit allows the case to accidentally slip off the iPhone much too easily. Otherwise, the TuffWrap is an unobtrusive if average case that doesn’t get in the way of using the iPhone. And it’s available for cheap, only $10 on Amazon (GSM/AT&T iPhone 4 only).

The TuffWrap is a thin case made out of matte-black silicone rubber. The rubber is much too thin to offer good shock absorption for the iPhone. While it’s better in the area of protection than hard-plastic cases of similar thickness, we can’t recommend the TuffWrap as a protective solution, especially with so many better options out there.

One area the TuffWrap performs well in is accessibility. With the case on, the iPhone’s headphone and docking ports are fully accessible for their respective plugs. The case covers up the iPhone’s sleep and volume buttons with raised pieces of silicone rubber that simulate buttons, which work properly when pressed.

One common annoyance with silicone rubber is that some versions of the material create a magnetic attraction to lint and dirt. Place one of these rubber cases in your pocket, and out will come a lint-covered mess. The TuffWrap is one of these cases. Even a quick swipe with a sweaty palm or a rub against your jeans is not enough to remove the grime. The case requires a bit of maintenance to keep clean.

Another disappointing aspect of the case is a loose fit. With the iPhone 4 being available for over 8 months now, there’s simply no excuse for a case to not fit right. Yet the TuffWrap will slip off the iPhone with the slightest tug. This can cause many annoying moments when, removing the iPhone from a pocket, the case will slip off a corner of the iPhone.

One of the better properties of silicone rubber is an inherent improvement in grip. The TuffWrap will give you a more secure hold on the iPhone. Its sides are lined with a textured surface that adds even additional non-slip grip.

In terms of looks, the TuffWrap is about as generic as they come. The one positive in this area is that it follows the contours of the iPhone 4, so those with discerning eyes will be able to tell that it’s a 4 and not a 3GS you’re holding. But the matte black coloring is plain and the case has little adornment. If flash and gloss is your thing, you should look elsewhere.

Conclusion

The XtremeMac TuffWrap ($10) is a generic-looking silicone rubber case for the iPhone with an annoyingly loose fit and a penchant for attracting (and holding on to) lint and dirt. It’s not a complete disaster—it generally stays out of the way of using the iPhone. And, it’s inexpensive. But in the world of cookie-cutter silicone cases, there are better choices out there, just check out our reviews for the Case-Mate Vroom ($10) or the Cellet Jelly ($8). We rate the TuffWrap a 6.0 out of 10, average.

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