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  1.    #1  
    I recently had a re-occurring headache with a Seidio Holster for my Treo in that the retaining clip holding the Treo in the holster weakened so that the Treo would ďpopĒ out of the holster as I sat down. I purchased this holster late last year and was concerned that the retaining clip had weakened in such a short time. While my original thought was to replace the holster with a pouch, I decided to give the holsters another try.

    In looking for a replacement holster, the Helix Holster was recommended by several. Additionally, I was invited by Seidio to review their new holster for the Treo. According to Seidio, their new holster is the best holster on the market and is significantly better than the previous model that was causing me problems.

    I decided to post a review comparing the two holsters. I used each holster exclusively for a week. I will first present some observations on each holster and then a summary comparison of the two.


    Helix Holster
    http://i.pbase.com/o4/38/413038/1/61...Helixfront.jpg

    Overall construction appears solid. It is made of a softer plastic that has a more rubber feel to it than plastic. I think the rubberized finish will go a long way to avoid scratching the finish on the Treo.

    However, with prolong use, I think the finish on the Treo where the retaining clip rubs against will show wear with time. My old Seidio holster (which is designed similar) rubbed the paint off the Treo in this area after about a month of use.

    http://i.pbase.com/o4/38/413038/1/61...xsidewTreo.jpg

    The Treo snaps into the holster with no difficulty and comes out of the holster with just as much ease. In the holster the Treo fits snug, really snug into the holster. There is no wiggle room to allow the Treo to ďpopĒ out un-expectantly. My only concern is that with time, the retaining clip will weaken and the snug fit wonít be as snug. Compared to the old Seidio holster, the retaining clip does appear to be stronger and may last longer. The retaining clip curves further down the Treo than the old Seidio holster which adds to the secure fit.

    I have noticed one problem with the retaining clip. It fits really close to the mute/sound switch and if youíre not careful, it will knock the button over to the non-mute side. You also canít take the Treo in/out of the case with a headset plugged in.

    http://i.pbase.com/o4/38/413038/1/61....Helixback.jpg

    The Helix comes with two clips. A rotating mounted clip or a detachable clip. Personally, I donít like the detachable clips simply because the Treo rides snugger with the mounted clip. Compared to the Seidio holsters the Helix does rides slightly lower but not too low to cause problems.

    One interesting note on the clips is that there is no metal lug on the holster for the clips to attach to. They attach to a plastic lug that is formed into the holster itself. This eliminates another potential area of the holster that could scratch the Treo. The clip itself does have a metal spring but the holster itself is all plastic.

    While the clip rotates, it doesnít make that distinctive ďclickĒ sound as other rotating clips do. The clip rotates with positions every quarter turn while other clips have positions every eighth of a turn. I donít see this being an issue simply because most rotate the holster to ride horizontal or vertical.

    http://i.pbase.com/o4/38/413038/1/61...ottomwTreo.jpg

    Accessibility to the buttons is not a problem. The holster is cut in such a manner to allow unrestricted access to the side buttons. The top button rests almost flush with the retaining clip but is accessible. While in the holster, the Treo mounts easily on to a cradle or sync cord. I am able to dock my Treo while in the holster to a Seidio cradle with no problem.

    Seidio New Holster

    http://i.pbase.com/o4/38/413038/1/61...dioHolster.jpg

    Advertised as the best holster for the Treo, it doesnít fall far from the mark. The overall construction is similar to the skinned holster. The holster is made from hard plastic with a felt liner. The clip rotates 180 degrees and feels firmly attached. Instead of a retention clip that is a molded part of the holster, Seidio has a hinged retention clip that holds the Treo firmly in the holster.

    http://i.pbase.com/o4/38/413038/1/61....SeidioTop.jpg

    The retention clip is spring loaded and overlaps the top of the Treo covering the SD slot and mute button. The clip has a thin rubber bumper underneath it to protect your Treo from being scratched.

    Two concerns over the design. First, I am curious how long it will take for the spring to weaken and secondly, could the retention clip pop the SD Card out of the Treo. The spring feels good and strong (itís actually to springs, one on each side of the cotter pin holding the clip). I would imagine it will take considerable use to weaken both of these springs.

    I popped the clip a few times to see if the SD card would pop out and on the third try, it popped out. I donít think under normal use the SD card will pop out but if you try, it will.

    http://i.pbase.com/o4/38/413038/1/61...ioClipSide.jpg

    The holster rides noticeably higher on your hip than the original Seidio Holster and the Helix. It will take some getting used to and due to the design; it feels a tad bulkier than the other two holsters. It gives you a false sense that the holster rides away from the body. The Treo snaps into the holster very easily and removal is just as problem free.

    You can remove the Treo from the holster while a headset is plugged in. The plug sits awfully close to the holster but far enough away that you can carefully remove the Treo without unplugging.

    The clip rotates 180 degrees while the Helix rotates 360 degrees. Not an issue for me and Iím curious is anyone carries their Treo upside down. Speaking of the clip, one criticism of the original Seidio Holster was that the clip gave way and fell off too easily. I canít pick up on how Seidio did it but this clip feels considerably sturdier than the previous model. It does feel more solid than the Helix but, remember the Helixís clip is designed to be removed/changed out.

    http://i.pbase.com/o4/38/413038/1/61...SeidioSide.jpg

    Accessibility to the side buttons is not a problem but you have to remove the Treo to access the mute button. If you are constantly turning on/off your mute, this may be an issue.

    http://i.pbase.com/o4/38/413038/1/61...idioBottom.jpg

    The holster is designed to allow docking while the Treo is holstered. I had no problem docking the holstered Treo to my Seidio desktop cradle.

    Summary
    Both seem to be very good holsters. I like the soft rubber material of the Helix but Iím leaning towards liking the retention design on the Seidio. I like the higher ride of the Seidio but it does take some getting used to.

    So, which is better? It all boils down to personal choice and either one would serve you well. If I had to choose one today, Iíde go with the Seidio. With use, the retention clip on both models is likely to weaken. With the Helix, the retention clip is a molded part of the holster. With the Seidio itís a hinged part connected to the holster. If the Helix weakens, your only choice is to replace the entire holster.

    If the springs in the Seidio weaken, there is a possibility (HINT, HINT) that Seidio will offer a replacement kit for the springs and you wonít have to scrap the entire holster.

    Hereís a brief grade sheet on the two holsters and the original Seidio Holster.

    Helix
    Construction Material A+
    Design/Construction A (Rather see a permanently fixed rotating clip)
    Durability A
    Usability A
    Worth the Price A

    Seidio (New Model)
    Material A (I like the rubber material of the Helix Better)
    Design/Construction A+
    Durability A- (moving parts that may weaken quicker)
    Usability A
    Worth the Price A- (only because itís $10 more than the Helix)

    Seidio (Original Model)
    Construction Material A
    Design/Construction A
    Durability C (Retention Clip weakens)
    Usability A
    Worth Price C (Retention weakens after a short period)

    Again, both are good holsters and which is better is really dependant on your preferences. I will say this, both holsters are by far better than the original Seidio holster. Helix took a similar design and improved it while Seidio redesigned a weakness in the original design.

    If the spring holds on the Seidio (and only time will tell) it will come close to meeting the company's boast that it's the best holster ever for the Treo.
    Last edited by coppertop; 06/14/2006 at 07:01 PM.
  2. 4ster's Avatar
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    #2  
    Excellent review. I currently have both, and my send them both back.

    BTW It took the Helix a week to stary noticibly chipping paint of my 650, right at the top where it is heldin place.
    Safety and happiness can only come from individuals, classes, and nations being honest and fair and kind to each other.
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  3. #3  
    can you use e-grips with either of these holsters?
    Thanks
    Verizon 650/Tekkeon mini/Krussel classic case
  4.    #4  
    Quote Originally Posted by trevsdad
    can you use e-grips with either of these holsters?
    Thanks
    I'm not sure.

    There is very little wiggle room with the fit of these holsters.
    If the e-grip doesn't lie in an area that the holster covers, I wouldn't see a problem.

    I will defer to those who have tried for a more substantial answer.
    Last edited by coppertop; 06/15/2006 at 03:14 PM.
  5. #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by trevsdad
    can you use e-grips with either of these holsters?
    Thanks
    Yes, I have used egrips in both of them ( I have them both, and prefer the Helix, it holds the 650 in tighter -- I had the 650 pop out of my Seido (old type) twice.

    You have to either modify them ahead of time or the holsters are both kind enough to modify them for you! The bottom cm or so of the rubbery part of the side decals rub away with time, leaving the plastic stickly layer intact on the phone. No biggee. After trying an embarassingly large number of carrying options, I have been using this one (holster and egrips) for the past 9-10 months and like it best.

    Nanotechnology Nerd
    i300-->i330-->i500-->6700(1 wk!)-->Sprintt650-->gsm650-->HTC Universal (1 mo.)-->gsm650-->Cing8525(3wks!)-->gsm650
  6. #6  
    Quote Originally Posted by shadowboxer
    Yes, I have used egrips in both of them ( I have them both, and prefer the Helix, it holds the 650 in tighter -- I had the 650 pop out of my Seido (old type) twice.

    You have to either modify them ahead of time or the holsters are both kind enough to modify them for you! The bottom cm or so of the rubbery part of the side decals rub away with time, leaving the plastic stickly layer intact on the phone. No biggee. After trying an embarassingly large number of carrying options, I have been using this one (holster and egrips) for the past 9-10 months and like it best.

    Is the holster that allows Treo 650 popping out the new Seidio holster (spring clip) or the old one ?

    Seidio
  7. #7  
    Quote Originally Posted by 4ster
    Excellent review. I currently have both, and my send them both back.

    BTW It took the Helix a week to stary noticibly chipping paint of my 650, right at the top where it is heldin place.
    Seidio new holster has the rubber part at the underside of holster that prevents Treo from being scratched.
  8.    #8  
    The rubber part is a nice addition and does prevent scratch.

    I did notice the Helix was rubbing away the Silver Sharpee I used to hide some of the scratches the original Seidio holster left.
  9. #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by coppertop
    The rubber part is a nice addition and does prevent scratch.

    I did notice the Helix was rubbing away the Silver Sharpee I used to hide some of the scratches the original Seidio holster left.
    Fixed top clip design like old Seidio or Helix holster will scratch the Treo. This is the reason we develop the spring clip (non-fixed clip). in addition to this, the rubber piece at the underside of Seidio new holster holds the Treo very secure and prevents the Treo from scratching.

    I also feel that by having the top clip at the middle like Seidio new holster instead of at the side like Seido old holster and Helix holster does hold the Treo more secure when the antenna is accidently bumped.
  10. #10  
    Quote Originally Posted by seidioseidio
    Is the holster that allows Treo 650 popping out the new Seidio holster (spring clip) or the old one ?

    Seidio

    It was the old one. sounds like the new one takes care of that problem and the case scratching.
    Nanotechnology Nerd
    i300-->i330-->i500-->6700(1 wk!)-->Sprintt650-->gsm650-->HTC Universal (1 mo.)-->gsm650-->Cing8525(3wks!)-->gsm650
  11. eKeith's Avatar
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    #11  
    Nice review coppertop!
    I'm thinking of getting one of these and your info will be very useful in making my decision...
    Current Phones: Unlocked AT&T Pre3; Samsung Galaxy Nexus i9250; HTC Desire A8181
    Current Tablets: Lenovo ThinkPad Tablet 183825U; HP TouchPad 32GB w/ACL
    Previous Devices: Unlocked UK Pre3; HTC Touch Diamond; Palm Unlocked GSM Treo 680; PalmOne Unlocked GSM 650; Palm Tungsten T3 w/PalmOne WiFi Card, PowerToGo and ASUS WL-330g; 3Com Palm III; Sony Clie N760C
  12. #12  
    Could it be that Silver Sharpee is not equal to the Oem paint job on the Treo? I have the Helix, am very happy with it, and no scratches, and the holster is used every day, many, many times a day.
    Jimbo
  13. eKeith's Avatar
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    #13  
    Quote Originally Posted by jwhite4304
    Could it be that Silver Sharpee is not equal to the Oem paint job on the Treo? I have the Helix, am very happy with it, and no scratches, and the holster is used every day, many, many times a day.
    Jimbo
    Can you please confirm that you cannot insert/remove the Treo while a headset is connected? I've got a Siedio 2-in-1 headset and this ability could be a deal-breaker for me.
    Current Phones: Unlocked AT&T Pre3; Samsung Galaxy Nexus i9250; HTC Desire A8181
    Current Tablets: Lenovo ThinkPad Tablet 183825U; HP TouchPad 32GB w/ACL
    Previous Devices: Unlocked UK Pre3; HTC Touch Diamond; Palm Unlocked GSM Treo 680; PalmOne Unlocked GSM 650; Palm Tungsten T3 w/PalmOne WiFi Card, PowerToGo and ASUS WL-330g; 3Com Palm III; Sony Clie N760C
  14.    #14  
    Quote Originally Posted by eKeith
    Can you please confirm that you cannot insert/remove the Treo while a headset is connected? I've got a Siedio 2-in-1 headset and this ability could be a deal-breaker for me.

    You can't insert/remove the Treo while connected to a headset with the Helix. The headset connector doesn't give you enough clearance from the retention clip.

    You can insert/remove the Treo while connected to a headset with the new Seidio. It's tight, but manageable. You pull the Treo out slightly to just clear the clip and then up and out.
  15. eKeith's Avatar
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    #15  
    Thanks copper!
    Now I understand what you mean.
    Current Phones: Unlocked AT&T Pre3; Samsung Galaxy Nexus i9250; HTC Desire A8181
    Current Tablets: Lenovo ThinkPad Tablet 183825U; HP TouchPad 32GB w/ACL
    Previous Devices: Unlocked UK Pre3; HTC Touch Diamond; Palm Unlocked GSM Treo 680; PalmOne Unlocked GSM 650; Palm Tungsten T3 w/PalmOne WiFi Card, PowerToGo and ASUS WL-330g; 3Com Palm III; Sony Clie N760C
  16.    #16  
    Glad I could be of help.
  17.    #17  
    *bump*
  18. eKeith's Avatar
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    #18  
    Seidio2
    + No scratches with padded clip design
    + 1/8 turns on belt clip
    - Seems too complicated with the spring retention clip: more stuff to fall apart and add bulk
    - Possible inadvertent SD card eject: oh no no!
    - Costs $10 more than the Helix. Is it really worth any more, and even that much more?
    - Sits higher on waist presumably adding to perception of bulk

    Helix
    + Simplicity of design, little bulk
    + Rubberized plastic
    + Sits lower on waist
    + $10 cheaper than Seidio2
    - Can't accommodate inserting and removing the Treo while a headset jack is plugged in: I might order one and put a dremel to it.
    - Expect scratches caused by the retention clip
    - 1/4 turns on belt clip only

    After I get my Helix, if my experience is different I will post again...
    Current Phones: Unlocked AT&T Pre3; Samsung Galaxy Nexus i9250; HTC Desire A8181
    Current Tablets: Lenovo ThinkPad Tablet 183825U; HP TouchPad 32GB w/ACL
    Previous Devices: Unlocked UK Pre3; HTC Touch Diamond; Palm Unlocked GSM Treo 680; PalmOne Unlocked GSM 650; Palm Tungsten T3 w/PalmOne WiFi Card, PowerToGo and ASUS WL-330g; 3Com Palm III; Sony Clie N760C
  19. fondoo's Avatar
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    #19  
    i wonder if the helix is better than my crappy cellet rubberized holster. my treo keeps falling out of the holster and i almost lost my phone twice.
  20. eKeith's Avatar
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    #20  
    Well after 4 months of daily use but not abuse, my Helix holster's clip broke due to the fatigue of the spring. Now I'm using the other clip provided although it's not my favourite...
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Current Phones: Unlocked AT&T Pre3; Samsung Galaxy Nexus i9250; HTC Desire A8181
    Current Tablets: Lenovo ThinkPad Tablet 183825U; HP TouchPad 32GB w/ACL
    Previous Devices: Unlocked UK Pre3; HTC Touch Diamond; Palm Unlocked GSM Treo 680; PalmOne Unlocked GSM 650; Palm Tungsten T3 w/PalmOne WiFi Card, PowerToGo and ASUS WL-330g; 3Com Palm III; Sony Clie N760C
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