For the last few weeks I’ve been researching dry bags for my iPhone. Do a search and you’ll find lots, but the choices narrow once you add the desire for full functionality and the ability to receive and make phone calls. Not that I want to be permanently plugged in, but I’m rather fond of my iPhone.
For me it came down to Seal Line and OB (Over Board). Both offered several models designed for iPhones with a variety of options.
For the Seal Line E-Case iSeries with phone jack (4 prong type) that allows full function of the phone via a head set. I picked it up in REI Reading MA for $34.95. At first glance it felt and looked good. Of the two this one is thicker and made of some form of fabric. It’s a little hard to get the phone into but the internal cord works well. Once the phone is in you can turn it on/off, work the volume buttons and the touch screen. I’m a little concerned with the seal but according to what I read and the package it’s good for 30 minutes in 1 meter of water. The seal itself is just like a fancy zip lock bag made from hard rubber.
Seal Line front
Seal Line back.
The OB on the other hand feel like a plastic bag but the seal at least seems much better. It has two locks (gray tabs in photo) that slide out to lock and in to open. The internal cord is attached to the very bottom of the bag as opposed to the back on the Seal Line model. However the OB cord is about a 1/2″ too short, or seems that way. You have to open the bag with one hand and fish around with the other to grab the cord. Then when you pull it up it stops right at the edge of the bag, so you need to open the bag extra wide to plug in the phone. The other issue is the cord can sometimes be right in front of the camera. On this one it seems to cover the back camera more than the front, but if you jiggle it around a bit the cord will move out of the way. Unlike the Seal Line the OB has a clear front and back, so I guess it makes no difference what way you put the phone in. The OB also has a 4 prong internal cord so I’m guessing that full phone capabilities are possible via a headset. I actually bought a water proof headset as the OB web site only mentioned listening and not talking via a headset. So I assumed that the internal cord was only 3 prong. In any event the quality on the ear buds is good and you can talk on the phone through the bag.
Cost for this unit was $29.95 for the bag and $24.95 for the head set. Also, forgot to mention the OB came with a carabiner and a neck lease. I figure the lease will be good for tying it off to my PFD or somewhere in the kayak.
OB front (and back)