Gadget cases are no doubt the most personal accessory one can purchase for that beloved device and the quest for the perfect case can be never-ending as a result. Smartphone cases are especially personal as such a small device must meld perfectly with the case so the phone does not feel too bulky once safely ensconced in the case. I have always found it difficult to find a good case for phones and especially so for the Palm Treo 700w since there are numerous controls situated all around the phone that I need to constantly access. Finding the perfect case for the Treo was something I thought I’d never accomplish, until now.
Anyone who has used mobile devices for any length of time at all is no doubt familiar with Vaja cases. The Argentinian case maker is renowned for their fine leather cases that are not only beautiful but extremely functional too. The good folks at Vaja recently sent me a couple of cases for the Palm Treo 700w/p to evaluate and I have to tell you they don’t disappoint in the looks department. Read on to see how they fared in the useful category.
T7 hard case
First up is a hard case for the Treo, the T7 open-faced case. The attention to detail that Vaja puts into every case is evident throughout the case, from the perfect fit on the Treo to the LED cover that amplifies the indicator for easy viewing. The outside of the case consists of smooth leather that is pleasant to the touch and just looks great. Once the Treo is nestled firmly inside the T7 case all controls and ports are easily accessible during use. A particularly nice touch are the two mesh speaker grilles on the front and back of the case that protect the phone without impacting the ability to use the phone or the speakerphone functions. Of course the case has the Vaja logo on the front of the case which is a classy logo in silver metal.
The T7 is available in two models, one with a belt clip and one without and the model they sent me is the one with the clip. The case fits securely in the clip and I don’t believe there is a danger of the encased phone falling out of the clip under any circumstances. Both models have a softer leather on the inside of the case which grips the phone securely, and the Vaja name is embossed over the entire inner surface. It looks so good it’s a shame to cover it up when you put the phone into the case. The two variants of the T7 case will run you $94 with the belt clip or $90 without and both are customizable with 30 different colors and combinations available. The lime green case they sent wouldn’t be my personal color choice but there are all those other colors to choose from. They are pricey but hey, it’s a Vaja case.
PA165 soft case
Second up is my favorite, the PA165 case in soft Vitelino leather. Like all Vaja cases the fit is perfect and the case protects the Treo nicely. A nice benefit of this case (the hard case too) is the way the Treo feels in the hand while in the case. The leather feels luxurious in the hand and makes the slippery naked Treo feel much more secure in the hand. I don’t feel I would ever drop the Treo while in this case, something I’ve done a couple of times with the naked Treo due to the slippery surface.
Like the T7 above, the PA165 has cutouts for all controls and functions on the Treo, and also features two mesh grilles over the two speakers. I find the case is so thin and light that it doesn’t feel like it adds bulk nor weight to the Treo and I can interact with the thumb keyboard and the screen without impact. I don’t know how the artisans at Vaja do it but it is as if the case was formed around the Treo perfectly. The PA165 is also available with or without the belt clip, the model I have is sans clip which is my preference. The Treo is so small I prefer to keep it in either my pants or shirt pocket, something I can easily do with this case. The model without the belt clip will set you back $60 and the clip will ad $4 to the case. The PA165 is also customizable with the Vitelino leather model coming in 13 different colors and the model in Anilina leather in 16 colors, also for $60.
Having used both cases for a few days it is easy to see why some folks will only use Vaja cases once they have tried them. The cases are fully functional works of art and just a joy to use and look at. Numerous people have asked me where I got the case for the Treo and when I tell them it’s a Vaja case I usually get a knowing nod. I am using the PA165 case full time now and it is without question the finest phone case I have ever used. The T7 is a nice case too but it seemed to add more bulk to the Treo than the soft case. Or maybe it was that lime green.