UPDATE: You can find  OtterBox coupon codes / discounts here.

As you’ve seen in our guide to selling iPhones something as simple as a scratch on your phone can reduce its value by $20. If you plan on selling your phone when it’s time to upgrade, then it would be essential to protect it. In this article we’re going to cover the OtterBox iPhone 5S case series and the different ways they can protect your phone. You may also be interested in our “Best iPhone Cases for the 5s” article.

The prices for each series are subject to change. Listed here are the current retail prices.

Quick Note about OtterBox Cases for the iPhone 5S

Cases will always get negative reviews from consumers for “cracking” or “falling apart.” However, cases only fall apart if the consumer handles them in a way deemed inappropriate for a case. If you use your case as a safety precaution and don’t throw your phone around then you’ll be fine.

Even if your case cracks or falls apart within a year of purchase, you’re in good hands because OtterBox will replace it free of charge.

 

Prefix Series ($24.95)

Otterbox iPhone 5/5s Prefix SeriesThe Prefix case for the iPhone 5S covers your phone with one polycarbonate and silicone skeleton. This case protects against bumps and shocks, and also comes with a self-adhesive screen protector.

Pros: The Prefix case is not bulky and doesn’t stick to the inside of your pockets. For this price it’s really great to get a case as well as a screen protector that comes with the purchase.

Cons: This case is not that durable. A select few customers on eBay report that it falls apart within weeks of purchase. They report cracks, protection inadequacy and bad durability. One of the biggest downsides to this case is that its not dockable. You will have to take your phone of the case to dock it.

Conclusion: The Prefix case is created as a sort of “budget-case”. It’s not intended to last forever and its certainly not intended to protect the phone from every type of drop. That’s what the muli-layer OtterBox cases are for.

 

Reflex Series ($34.95)

Otterbox iPhone 5/5s Reflex Series

Just like the Prefix, the Reflex only offers one layer of protection which is made out of polycarbonate and silicon. The case has two halves that slide into each other to lock onto the phone.

Pros: Taking this case on and off is really simple and fast. The Reflex case is also dockable. One of the most useful features of this case is that it has air pockets in the corners which absorb impact energy before letting it get to your phone. This OtterBox case for the iPhone 5S also comes with a self-adhesive screen protector.

Cons: Customers on Amazon are reporting that this case has cracked for them within a couple of months. These customers may have just dropped their phones a lot though. The Reflex and Prefix cases are not made for frequent drops, but rather for those rare phone-accidentally-slips-out-of-your-hand situations.

Conclusion: If you don’t drop your phone a lot then the Otterbox Reflex case is perfect for your needs.

 

Commuter Series ($34.95-39.00)

Otterbox iPhone 5/5s Commuter Series

The Commuter series case is a beauty. It comes in two layers which provide a significant protection boost. This case also has port coverings that fit into the headphone and dock port to block out debris.

Pros: This case comes with a screen protector and has two layers to adequately protect your phone from dust. You can drop this thing onto a concrete surface with dirt on it, and your phone is going to be perfectly fine.

Cons: Once again a small number of customers are reporting cracks. However, when you get to the Commuter series case the quality is significantly improved compared to the Prefix or the Reflex. Any negative reviews about this case (other than its bulk) are just customers that are mad their case broke after dropping their phones hundreds of times.

Conclusion: The Commuter case is a bit bulky and may not fit in all jeans comfortably. Even though the case is big, its an appropriate size when compared to other competitor cases. The dust protection is a nice bonus that makes this case worth it if you can handle the size.

 

Defender Series ($49.95-$59.95)

Otterbox iPhone 5/5s Defender Series

This is the iron man suit of iphones cases. When people see your phone wrapped in a defender case they will often ask you about it to make sure its a defender case. The OtterBox Defender series is really popular with a lot of customers, and a lot of devices, all over the world. This case is as real as it gets. It’s made out of three protective layers! It even has its own plastic screen cover (built into the case) as well as port and headphone covers.

Pros: The defender defends against heavy duty drops and accidents. You could drop your phone down a staircase with this case and it wouldn’t be damaged. The Defender case also has a holster add-on.

Cons: Taking the phone out of this case is really hard considering that it has three layers. Also since the Defender is not dockable you can say good-bye to all your dock accessories. You simply won’t have the time or patience to take the case off every time you want to dock your phone. A lot of customers report bad design builds with these cases. Customers are right in this case (pun not intended). The design build on the Defender Series makes product quality inconsistent from one case to another. I’ve known some people that never had problems with them, and others that got a case which wouldn’t interlock properly between the three layers.

Conclusion: If you want a serious case for serious protection, then the Defender Series is your best option from OtterBox. Although this case is huge and bulky, it’s worth it if you need that level of protection – for example, if you’re prone to dropping your phone, or work at a construction site etc. where you may drop your phone from high places. Once you put your phone into this case it will be as close to indestructible as a phone can be.

 

Preserver Series ($89.95)

Otterbox iPhone 5/5s Preserver Series

The Preserver Series has a two-layer protection solution that blocks out water, dust, mud, snow and anything else imaginable. It’s not yet available for purchase, and has a “coming soon” notice on the Otterbox website. You can sign-up to their notification email list if you want to be notified when it comes out.  Update: The Preserver Series are available as of 13-Dec-13 – check it out here.

If you need to protect your phone from all the elements, then this is what you’d want to get. While your iphone 5s is in an Otterbox Preserver case, you can still use the finger scanner and have access to all other functions of your iphone.  However, this case comes with a price – or rather two prices. The first price is that you have to pay in pocket space. The Preserver Series is huge and might not fit in all pockets. The second price is the actual price itself. $90 is a lot of money, but if you want a case you can rely on for the ultimate protection from water (of up to 6.6 ft deep for up to 30 minutes) and drops (from up to 6.6 ft in height), then the price may very well be worth it to you.

Don’t forget to check out these coupon codes for Otterbox.

 

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