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> Piel Frama Cases For Clamshells, the keyboard plastic cover
OttoAcuna
post Nov 6 2005, 08:18 AM
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It seems Extreme Limit in Japan has stopped producing for the Zaurus. It was a nice case, specially the Metal - Leather combination. Anyone has news on this?

Regards,

Otto

QUOTE(bluedevils @ Nov 6 2005, 02:59 AM)
Actually one of the things that drew me to the piel over the pdair, xigma and etreme limit cases is the leather surrounding the base.  I feel more at ease with the sides of the case less exposed.  In fact I would have liked all sides enclosed to keep pocket lint out.

As things workout, I have been given the opportunity to make the purchase with the guarantee that I could return with full refund.  I have to wait a couple weeks to get it, but I will try to post my impressions,
*
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GadgetGuy
post Nov 6 2005, 08:59 AM
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QUOTE(bam @ Nov 5 2005, 08:09 PM)
the plastick cover is not an issue, its a thumb-board, so its alway hunt and peck.
*


All is relative. I type on the keyboard (relatively) fast - clearly faster than "hunt and peck". But with the plastic cover on it, it becomes hunt and peck - which is not acceptable for me.
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TRIsoft
post Nov 7 2005, 02:53 AM
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Hi all,

> I can't remember which company got involved with Piel Frama and
> the design decisions, but I remember the plastic cover coming up as an issue.

hmm, we remember. The name starts with a T laugh.gif

> I never understood why the final design came out as such, considering
> the amount of criticism of the plastic cover.

The overall problem with such decisions is that you'll always end up with
50% "Hooray!" and 50% "OMG! How bad !".

Pros for the plastic:
Keyboard is protected from dirt / fluids.
The lower part of the case is much more stable.
Compared to the SL-C7x0/8x0 case design, closing the case is easier.

Cons:
Typing is a bit harder but acceptable.

We still believe that the actual design is much better than the previous
design for the C7x0/8x0 series. Also we had no negative response about
the keyboard cover from our customers.

///TRIsoft

Marc Stephan
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Streamline
post Nov 7 2005, 01:51 PM
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Same here Marc we have had no negative response from the ones who have purchased here.
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maslovsky
post Nov 7 2005, 10:45 PM
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I used to own PielFrama cases for both my old 5500 and C750. Although the quality of their cases is excellent I always wanted to have a belt case for my 750, but unfortunately PrelFrama still doesn't produce such.

I eneded up buying a case with a steel belt clip from http://nutshell.cc. The quality is very good - they use think and durable but still very soft leather. And I find their belt clip to be much better and much more reliable then the plastic one PielFrama makes. Just have a look at the pictures at their web site.

The case is large enough to hold my C1000 and a USB host cable at the buttom. And you can order a flap verison with a pocket, which holds a WiFi card.
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BlackCardinal
post Nov 10 2005, 02:52 PM
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maslovsky, which Nutshell case do you have? I've had a 207 with belt clip for several years for my old 5500 and absolutely love the case, and I want to get one for my new C1000. But I can't tell for sure which one to get. It looks like 209 is the right size, but it would be a tight fit for the thicker C1000.
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maslovsky
post Nov 15 2005, 07:09 AM
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Yes, model 209 is good for CxK
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neuroshock
post Dec 2 2005, 12:45 AM
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I've just recieved a Piel Frama case for my new 3100. (By the way I just found out that I could have purchased it from Streamline rather than direct from Piel Frama for about the same amount I paid for it. I really hate that as I could have gotten it sooner while supporting a company that supports it's users. Everyone should take a few minutes to go browse through Streamlines product line!- my apologies Stephen) I purchased it to replace the PDAir case that I bought for it originally, and while I liked how it actually mounted to the bottom of the case I was totally unimpressed with the rest of it. As a matter of fact my experience with the PDAir case is what drove me to order a Piel Frama.

For me (can't speak for others) the whole purpose for getting a case to begin with is PROTECTION. Not just to keep it from getting scratches and nicks on the physical body of the Zaurus, but more importantly- to protect it from breakage if it falls. Most specifically, to keep the DISPLAY from breaking if it falls. In these regards I feel that the PDAir fails miserably.

With the 3100 open the Piel Frama case obviously provides more protection for the bottom half of the unit, yes it may degrade usability a bit but remember I'm just dealing with the primary and most important reason we get a case at all - for protection. So unless it simply makes the device unusable to me the Piel Frama wins here. A good argument could be made that it keeps trash and hand grease/oil out of the keyboard I suppose. I really don't feel that's a truly worthy argument since I've never heard of even a single person on the boards here report that his Zaurus had died due to that issue.

The screen however is VERY succeptible to breakage if it's in either case and opened. The Piel Frama wins out here narrowly only because it's cover hinges the whole length of the back instead of just a small portion like the PDAir does. This provides more hope that the edge of the top leather cover will land first and cushion the fall- but notice I said "more" hope and not a "LOT" of hope. In this regard there is no slam-dunk (pardon the pun) winner here for protection if the Zaurus is opened. I would be much happier if some case manufacturer would find a convenient way to keep the leather up and around the display when in "mini-laptop" mode, but if it were that easy and simple to engineer around this problem then it would already have been done and this thread wouldn't even exist.

But the big money in this issue (imho anyway) is the protection that the case gives when the Zaurus is CLOSED. ANY case for ANY pda should give near 100% protection when the PDA and case are CLOSED. At first glance these two brands may look pretty even- but if you think so then you should look a little closer. The PDAir leaves the edges of the base of the Z, the edges of the Z's screen both open to be scratched and scuffed. Now with their case closed and buckled you would think that it protects at LEAST the top and bottom of the Z- but it doesn't. It's the fault of that skinny little connecter flap that hold the top and bottom of their case together. With my C3100 I can easily slide the top of the case cover in one direction or another when it's buckled to expose the top and corners of the screen with my pinky finger. For this same reason, the Zaurus is completely vulnerable to screen breakage when dropped EVEN IF THE PDAIR CASE IS CLOSED AND BUCKLED! The cover is just so malleable as to not provide that protection.

Most ppl don't realize that over 80% of all LCD screen breakage occurs in PDA's and Laptops because the BEZEL is struck rather than something directly impacting the glass of the screen. I've killed 2 pda's (my first sl-5500 as a matter of fact- happened less than an hour after I took it out of the box) this way to my great shame. It is for this reason that the PDAir case offers so little protection for the display. Sure if you drop the case directly upside down then it should more than suffice, but again- remember our 80% statistic. Because of the small leather hinge issue if you drop your Zaurus and it strikes on the SIDES of the screen/zaurus then the case affords almost no protection at all to the screen even when the case is closed and buckled. That top cover when buckled just doesn't have enough rigidity becasue of the little leather hing to keep it where the top cover- and the top cover alone- will impact and prevent the screen bezel from impacting as well.

So in my opinion (and it's not right or wrong just simply mine) the PDAir case for the Z SL-Cxx00 series fails in it's primary duty. It does not offer good protection for the Zaurus opened or closed. The sad part of this story is that I'm sure they worked very hard to make the case convenient for the user. In THAT area I believe they offer a superior product. From that perspective the bottom mount offers superior accessability not only to the drive bays etc. but also to the keyboard. The little leather hinge that I'm so unimpressed about makes it easier to get the top conveniently out of the way when using the Z in either screen position.

So my point is it's always a give and take when you engineer protection devices. It's like setting up a firewall- everyone has to decide for themselves how much security they are willing to sacrifice at the alter of the god of accessibility. In this case Piel Frama decided to be conservative and give as much protection as was humanly possible while still allowing the user to access and enjoy his Zaurus. The PDAir designers chose the opposite and engineered as much ease-of-use and maximum ease-of-access into their case and in doing so greatly lessened the protection that their device afforded the user's prized possession.

Everyone has to make their own choice from there, but as for me- I buy cases for PROTECTION. If they can't protect my device well, then there is just no need for me to proceed to "ease-of-access" issues. I am very willing to put up with minor issues such as the clear plastic cover of the keyboard in order to be able to not have to worry about breakage. I suppose if we were buying these things from SHARP USA instead of SHARP Japan and it were easier to get them serviced in my country I might be more flexible in this area.

A final note- unless you choose to go with the croc or ostrich skin from Piel Frama the user should find both cases to be fairly equally handsome in design. I personally like the Piel Frama more for "looks" but it is also about $30usd more in price as well. I also believe that both Companies could improve upon their designs and in so produce a better device and I seriously hope they will continue to make product adjustments in the future. First on my list of additional improvements would be to find a way to protect the screen and bezel when the Z is in "mini-laptop" mode and opened. If they could accomplish that and merge the protection of the Piel Frama with the accessibility of the PDAir this topic could easily be closed.

I think the only reason this hasn't been achieved already is that the case makers don't feel that they'd be able to sell the cases at a high enough price to be profitable. I'd be VERY willing to pay up to $150 usd or so for such a case. My usual extreme upper price limit for a case is about 25% of the price I pay for the PDA itself. In my case I paid $550 for the C3100 (but had to do all the language conversion etc. myself) and about $83 for the Piel Frama. I don't feel a price tag of $150 for the "perfect" Cxx00 case to be outrageous. If they make it- I'll buy it. I think others would too, not everyone certainly, but enough to make them marketable and then some.

There's my 2 cents worth- maybe not a good opinion but it's the only one I have. wink.gif

Yet another marathon post by yours truly. *sigh* Sorry guys.

Be Good!,

-NeuroShock
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bluedevils
post Dec 2 2005, 02:27 AM
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haha smile.gif It's still a good post. I should be getting my piel from Streamline before the end of next week. I'm also getting an extreme gear rugged PDA case. The piel frama will be for when a leather case is appropriate (most of the time) and the extreme gear for when better isolation or carrying on a belt is needed. Right now I'm using my old 760 case (from the pouch.com), but it is custom fit for the 760 and is too tight for long term use.
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GadgetGuy
post Dec 2 2005, 06:48 AM
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I agree that protection is a must.

That is why I have several cases, some of them are like a mini safe for the C3100 (watertight and with rubber padding inside). ( Edit: the case is made by Pelican)

However the Piel Frama case does not allow for 100% proper closing of the screen portion ( not mentioning the much worse typing feel ) - so I would worry, that actually it may hurt (on the long run) the hinge mechanism ( with its associated very sensitive flexible cables...)

This post has been edited by GadgetGuy: Dec 2 2005, 10:49 AM
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neuroshock
post Dec 2 2005, 08:58 AM
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QUOTE(bluedevils @ Dec 2 2005, 10:27 AM)
haha smile.gif  It's still a good post.  I should be getting my piel from Streamline before the end of next week.  I'm also getting an extreme gear rugged PDA case.  The piel frama will be for when a leather case is appropriate (most of the time) and the extreme gear for when better isolation or carrying on a belt is needed.  Right now I'm using my old 760 case (from the pouch.com), but it is custom fit for the 760 and is too tight for long term use.
*


Bluedevils,
You've piqued my interest. Exactly which model Extreme gear case are you getting? I'm a sucker for a case and this one sounds interesting.

GadgetGuy- I've got a Pelikan case that sounds just like your "mini safe" case. It works great. I also have one identical to it but it is only rubber-lined on the bottom half of the case, the top half of the case is clear plastic. I use the clear one for my 6000 as it fits snugly in with the Expansion Sled attached. As soon as my Stowaway Bluetooth keyboard/mouse arrive I hope to be able to use it when my friend takes us out on his boat. (Being disabled I don't get out much so it's a chance for our families to hang out together and for me to actually see sunlight and feel the wind in my face a bit. He's a super great guy.) Very cool, and gives me peace of mind that if water somehow sprays over it only the keyboard/mouse would be at risk. I'm also going to try and see if the bt keyboard and mouse could be covered with ziplock sandwich/freezer bags and still work. Then I'd be waterproof with my Z's!

-Neuro
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bluedevils
post Dec 2 2005, 09:22 AM
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This one. xgearblack

Thanks goes to Chero who pointed it out. I had always liked the grinder gear basecamp, but they stopped making them when I first considered buying them. Now they are back as extreme gear.
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dfisher
post Dec 2 2005, 11:35 AM
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Hi,

I received my SL-6000 case 2 weeks ago, as well as some "Frama Film" screen protectors. I have to say this thing is excellent. The quality of the fit is fantastic and far better than the ExtremeLimit I bought for the SL-5500 years ago. It came with a belt clip too which I'll use when playing .mp3's on the way to work.

This is a premium product for a premium piece of hardware.

Cheers,
Doug
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Streamline
post Dec 2 2005, 02:13 PM
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Neuroshock and others could you provide me with some detailed revisions you would like to see on the Piel Frama cases and I will submit it to them for there review and see what they say. They are very easy to work with and pictures are always great.
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neuroshock
post Dec 2 2005, 08:49 PM
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QUOTE(Streamline @ Dec 2 2005, 10:13 PM)
Neuroshock and others could you provide me with some detailed revisions you would like to see on the Piel Frama cases and I will submit it to them for there review and see what they say. They are very easy to work with and pictures are always great.
*


Stephen,

Wilco. ASAP. Nothing would make me happier than to put positive suggestions into the hands of ppl who have the ear of the manufacturer.

-NeuroShock
Dan
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