capsule review

OtterBox for iPod nano (2nd Generation)

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At a Glance
  • OtterBox for iPod nano (2nd Generation)

OtterBox's OtterBox for iPod nano (2nd Generation) is an updated version of the original OtterBox for iPod nano that fits the newer, second-generation (2G) nano; it's otherwise identical to the 1G version.

Like other iPod OtterBoxes, you insert your nano into the case by opening the lid and sliding the iPod in until its headphone jack connects firmly to the 1/8", stationary headphone plug inside; an external, pass-through headphone jack lets you plug in your headphones. As you squeeze the case together and snap the latch closed, a rubber gasket forms a watertight seal around the case, providing protection from water, sand, dirt, dust -- nearly everything. (The company claims the OtterBox is waterproof to 1 meter.) Rubber "bumpers" inside the case provide very good shock protection in case of drops or bumps.

(If you're interested in submersible/waterproof headphones, OtterBox recommends those from SwimMan, available at

The OtterBox case is nearly crushproof, yet it doesn't prevent you from controlling your iPod when the player is inside: A thick membrane gives you full access to the nano's Click Wheel. (I found the membrane on the 2G version of the OtterBox for iPod nano to be slightly stiffer -- requiring a bit more pressure to press the Click Wheel's buttons -- than that of the 1G version. I note this only because I noticed the difference, not because I consider it to be a flaw.) The nano's hold switch is inaccessible, as is its dock connector port. The OtterBox's removable belt clip provides a large groove around which you can wrap excess headphone cable. You also get a unique lanyard that attaches by inserting two rubber "T" connectors into grooves in the open case; when the case is closed, the lanyard's connectors are locked into place. An optional ($15) armband provides another carrying option.

As is the case with all OtterBox iPod cases, excellent protection comes at a price in size: At 5.1" x 2.2" x 1.1" (including the removable belt clip), the case adds a significant amount of bulk and weight to your nano. Although it's less than the girth added to standard iPods by the full-size OtterBox model, because the nano is so slim, it seems like more.

That being said, like the other OtterBox cases, this is the most protective iPod nano case we've seen, and the one we most recommend when venturing into unforgiving environments.
--Dan Frakes

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At a Glance
  • OtterBox for iPod nano (2nd Generation)

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