Aquapac Mega-Review: Waterproof MP3 Case, Headphones, and Phone Pouch
Have you ever longed to use your beloved phone or perhaps your iPod in the shower? Maybe you’ve been dying for your Glee fixation while you swim laps in the pool? Although, I’ve never had such desires (I swear!), a number of my friends and colleagues have. And of course, that’s where we run into a bit of trouble… obviously, electronics are not suitable for underwater use. Don’t believe me? Check out our very simple formula: Water + Wires=Disaster.
Of course, there are a number of makeshift solutions (i.e. plastic bags) too , but for the most part these attempts are flawed in one way or another. Now, it appears that we can rejoice thanks to Aquapac, a company dedicated to building waterproof pouches and bags for our favoritest gadgets.
In this “mega-review,” we’ll take a closer look at the company’s MP3 pouch, a set of waterproof headphones that of course play nice with the MP3 pouch, and a smartphone pouch that the kind folks over at Aquapac sent our way. So, prepare to cringe while we tell you about submerging our expensive tech 10 feet deep in H2O in this TechTrackr.com Review!
Unlike the majority of the products we review here, my guess is that you’ve never heard of the company behind these contraptions. No worries because prior to the review, we hadn’t either. Turns out we can thank the folks over Aquapac, a company situated in the great state of New York. They boast that their products are “100% Waterproof”:
Every case sealed with our patented Aquaclip® seal tested 100% waterproof to at least 0.5 bar, which is equivalent to a depth of 16.7 feet (5.1m) of water. Some tested waterproof to 2.0 bar, which is equivalent to 66.9 feet (20.4m) of water.
Pretty impressive stuff. If you’re dying to learn more about the sealing system, head here.
Now, if you do decide to place an order with Aquapac (see whether you should or not below…), shipping’s free anywhere in the continental United States. Sorry Alaska and Hawaii, you’ll need to shell out $17. Of course Aquapac offers faster shipping options, but they’ll add a premium to the total cost.
Oh, and it’s worth mentioning that Aquapac also includes a 3-year warranty with every purchase, which states that if the case fails to work, and water damage is caused to the products inside the case when used properly, Aquapac will not only refund your case, but also the cost of the contents that were damaged. Definitely comforting.
Keep reading past the break for my thoughts!
MP3 PLAYER POUCH & HEADPHONES
For those times when a stereo simply isn’t enough and you absolutely NEED to have music playing directly into your ears while you’re submerged in H2O, Aquapac has got you covered. The company’s MP3 pouch promises to protect your MP3 player, and in tandem with waterproof headphones, allow you to listen to some of your favorite tunes in places that you’ve never been able to before!
The pouch itself is rather large; as you can see, it’s made from a slick film that is obviously waterproof. On the upper part of the pouch, there’s a headphone extension that sort-of pokes out of the pouch itself through an airtight hole. To insert your MP3 player, simply twist two latches and open the pouch. Once you’ve inserted your MP3 player, just attach the headphone extension and seal the pouch closed using the latches. After completing this simple process, you can throw your MP3 player into the pool and have a blast.
In my testing of two different iPod models, an iPod Touch as well as an older click-wheel iPod, both survived without a scratch– plus, I’m happy to report that the film caused no interference. Again, I’m extremely impressed, almost surprised, by how well this product works.
All in all, the MP3 pouch is great. I was truly impressed that the pouch ended up doing a flawless job. And, the headphone extension that pierces through the pouch (which worried me at first) , turned out to be a non-issue.
But, how can you enjoy music in the water without headphones?
Now, before we continue here, let me share something with you: I’m a sound snob, an audiophile of sorts. Albeit I don’t know everything there is to know about speakers and headphones, but I am a musician so I need my music to sound great.
Now, when I first went ears-on with the Aquapac headphones, I was pleasantly surprised because the sound was much crisper than I had been expecting. With that being said, the headphones aren’t going to sound like your premium Bose or V-MODA sets do, but they’ll definitely compete with any pair of headphones in its price range. While the headphones handled lows and highs well, bass was an issue. When the bass was really thumpin’, the sound quality became extremely muddy.
If these headphones were simply normal headphones in this price range, I wouldn’t complain, nor would I praise them. I would call them average. However, when I threw the competing headphones into a pool, they broke. The Aquapac headphones did not. They performed equally as well under the water as they did on land, with the exception of direct exposure to water. If you rip the headphones out of your ear while they are submerged, the headphones will get much quieter and the sound quality will deteriorate. However, if you simply rise to the surface and pat the headphones gently against a towel, your problems are gone, and the headphones work once again.
The headphones aren’t without issues though. If you have an irregular-sized ear, you’re out of luck, as the headphones only come with ear buds for one size. Also, when above land, moving the cable on the headphones is actually audible and sound moves through the headphones. Besides these small complaints, Aquapac has done a nice job with their waterproof headphones.
If you buy the case and headphones together, you’ll need to shell out $85. Alternatively, you can buy either item separately: the MP3 pouch will run you $50 while the waterproof headphones cost $45. Two quick notes: 1) it doesn’t make sense to buy one without the other… and 2) you save $10 when you buy them together.
- Doesn’t interfere with touch
- Headphone Extension
- Fits most MP3 Players
THE AVERAGE/ “SO-SO”
- Price: $50
The MP3 case delivered. And, with the surprising touch support, this case is an excellent solution for listening to music ‘under the sea.’ Highly recommended.
- Surprisingly good quality (for price)
- Work well underwater
THE AVERAGE/ “SO-SO”
- Buds for irregular ears not included
- Some audio interference
- Price: $45
Once again, Aquapac delivers on a great product. The headphones are superb due to the fact that they’re not only a solid competitor relative to their price, but they offer underwater functionality. Don’t let my knit-picky review stop you from buying this great product. All around, these are highly recommended.
I know what you all are thinking: “Eric actually doled out a positive review? How unusual!”. Well, here comes the negativity, because I absolutely hated this product.
Before I begin my rant, know that I can’t call the Smartphone pouch a “poor” product, because it does exactly what it advertises: keeping your smartphone completely safe water-damage and sand while at the beach for example. The device is inserted exactly the same way that it is inserted with the MP3 pouch, which is simple and quick, and the device is completely protected from water, so in this area I have nothing to complain about. This pouch, once again, has no issue with interfering with touch-screen devices, which is a definite plus for those who use a phone that depends on a touch-screen (read: iPhone, Droid)
However, this item, in my opinion, is useless. I can’t think of a single reason to have my phone in the water, and even if I could, none of the features are usable. Obviously talking and hearing through the pouch is impossible, so forget trying to call someone, and for those using phones that have physical buttons, the film truly gets in the way. It is impossible to use the trackball on a BlackBerry with the pouch, rendering a large percentage of all smart phones useless with this case.
The case can be purchased for $30 USD.
- Doesn’t interfere with touch
- Fits all phones
THE AVERAGE/ “SO-SO”
- Eliminates usage of many phone features
- No mechanism to be able to speak through
- Scope of product is somewhat limited
The phone case, in my opinion, is a useless product. This is by no means saying that the product is poorly made, for the product delivers on exactly what it promises, but in my opinion the purpose is very limited. If you want what this product advertises, though, than I would highly recommend picking up the Aquapac Smartphone case. For those looking for a way to prevent water damage while using your phone with all of its functionality, this is not the case for you.
Now that you’ve heard my two cents, I want to know: are you going to be picking up anything we reviewed in the near future? Be sure to share your thoughts about the Aquapac line and our review in the comments box below.
Article posted by: Eric Zwilling
Bio: Eric, a "closet nerd," loves all different kinds of tech, but is particularly knowledgeable when it comes to smart phones and gaming devices. Eric’s looking forward to seeing the world change as a result of these technological advancements. Eric also enjoys playing sports (lacrosse is his favorite) and test driving cars. He acknowledges his extremely radical opinions and he extends his sincerest apologies if he bashes your favorite gadget.
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