Crimson Aluminum Frame Case for iPhone 4

While many are going crazy over the near-release of the iPhone 5 as of this review, there are still a lot holding onto their iPhone 4 and are nowhere just letting them go. Thus, it is imperative that this smartphone is always kept safe against the elements. Doing so often means that the phone is to be placed in a protective casing that will prevent breakage from accidents or misuse. Now, there are a lot of cases out there providing protection from the skinny to the bulky that will often cover most of the phone surface. What if there’s a case that can offer the same level of protection at a minimal coverage? A case that won’t be intrusive of the iPhone 4′s design-related functionality. Well, that’s what Crimson aims to do with their Aluminum Frame Case (AFC) for the iPhone 4. Will it live up to its promise? Find out in our review.


To open the cardboard envelope is simply an act of pulling the single bottom flap sealing it. Once unfolded, the plastic clam-type enclosure easily slides out containing the case itself. The clam-type enclosure is then sealed with two red stickers at each side. Tearing those will reveal the case and will immediately give a feel of how sturdy it is. As for the accessories, they’re mainly enclosed by the case itself. In order to get them, first pull the “tool kit” flap at the top part and you’ll be getting a small zip lock bag with a hex wrench and two extra screws.

Unboxing & Presentation



The case comes in a crimson-colored cardboard envelope that has a plastic clam-type enclosure that contains the case itself. The front of the package has the usual company logos and product name. While the middle part of it is emptied out so that the plastic clam-type enclosure is protruded to give a sense of how thick the case itself is. Turning the package to the back reveals the same company logo & product name and the same emptied space corresponding to the one in front. The rear part contains mostly information about the case itself, including features and accessories.






To open the cardboard envelope is simply an act of pulling the single bottom flap sealing it. Once unfolded, the plastic clam-type enclosure easily slides out containing the case itself. The clam-type enclosure is then sealed with two red stickers at each side. Tearing those will reveal the case and will immediately give a feel of how sturdy it is. As for the accessories, they’re mainly enclosed by the case itself. In order to get them, first pull the “tool kit” flap at the top part and you’ll be getting a small zip lock bag with a hex wrench and two extra screws.

First Impressions


As earlier mentioned, most iPhone cases are either made of rubber or plastic. With the AFC being made form aircraft-grade aluminum might give some notion that this is heavy. Now this is very much the opposite as the case, even with the packaging, is very lightweight. Weighting at only 19 grams, it won’t add a significant weight to the iPhone 4. The finish of the aluminum is very well done and despite coming in multiple colors, it doesn’t give any impressions of paint chipping or scratching. The finish on the cases is anodized, not painted or powder-coated. The color should last for a VERY long time. Getting a hold of the case itself will already give a sense of quality with how precise the form factor is. And with the Crimson logo engraved at the font, it gives a “tough elegant” look into it.


The major selling point of this case is its minimal intrusion to the iPhone 4′s visual appeal. As they said it themselves, the iPhone 4 is a masterpiece of beauty and engineering so why choose a case that conceals all that beauty? We think that they’ve made a great approach in the design. The case is aimed at giving the protection with very minimal of surface area covered. As we’ve noticed, the case employs protection by giving emphasis on the corners of the phone, the areas at which it will be likely damaged when hit upon dropping or something similar. And while the case itself is made of aluminum, we kind of wonder as to why they chose resin for the corner guards. More of those concerns in the main review.

Features & Specifications
  • Precision CNC machined
  • Aircraft-grade aluminum frames
  • Engineering-grade resin corner guards
  • Stainless steel screws
  • Durable anodized or polished finishes
  • Weighs only 19 grams
  • Unobstructed access to all ports, controls, and camera
  • Works with all iPhone 4 models – GSM and CDMA
Overall this kind of casting will please the minimalist or those who don't want to cover the beauty of their iPhones. The Frame approach provides an effective way to absorb impact forces though it may be insufficient for damage that may be caused by direct impact to the surface not covered by the enclosure. However, there sare still deficiencies to the design, given that the minimal surface coverage it has. At this point, it's just a matter of compromising between coverage and design.



Final Thoughts



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