SENA iPhone X/XS Leather Case REVIEW | MacSources


Over the July 4th Holiday, my parents met up with my wife, my children, and me in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Due to the recent Corona Virus issues, we avoided the more crowded public hangouts. Instead, we each drove our motorhomes into the mountains and enjoyed a relaxing low-tech, unplugged, weekend, While sitting at a picnic bench, my father pulled his uncased iPhone out of his pocket and fumbled the au naturel smartphone into the rocks. Each of us has experienced the anxiety of the above scenario, of dropping or nearly dropping our phone. I felt an immediate discomfort in my gut and asked my father why his phone was without a case. “I took it off and forgot,” was his response. As the prices of smartphones drift upward, my desire for a secure/protective case increases. With so many options available to protect our phones, each of us should find an option that suits our fancy. Considering the Leather case from Sena as an example, you can enjoy a simple yet elegant leather case, without breaking the bank.

The Sena iPhone X/XS case arrived in a matte-black 4 9/16 inches wide by 7 1/4 inches tall by 1 3/8 inches thick retail box. The cover, minus the centered, glossy-black, 3/4 inches wide by 3/8 inches tall “SENA,” provided no additional information. Additionally, other than the small SKU sticker along the lower edge of the back panel, the remaining surfaces were left unadorned. Without specifically knowing that this was a phone case, the “Leatherskin Black” label could have suggested that the product was a wallet, or perhaps a strap for a watch. Ordinarily, I appreciate the blank spaces as much as the content. Many companies choose to fill every surface with information and often lazily repeat/reuse images/phrases. SENA may have gone a bit too far the other way by including too little information. To learn more about the device, I lifted the cover and removed the three included items. First, I found the 3 inches wide by 5 3/4 inches tall by 7/16 inches wide leather case. Second, I found the four-panel instruction manual. Lastly, I found a 4 3/8 inches wide by 8 inches tall nylon drawstring bag.

On first impression, the leather case had a refreshing look/texture, and provided an alluring new car/leather smell. I loved the quasi-grippy surface of the back/side material and the protection of the raised screen bezel. The right side of the phone case had raised 3/8 inches long by 3/32 inches wide volume buttons and a narrow 3/8 inches long by 3/16 inches wide volume toggle cutout. The left side panel had a single raised 21/32 inches long by 3/32 inches power button. Each of the raised buttons had a coarse metallic surface feel and a pleasing click-feel. The back panel had a well placed 1 1/8 inches tall by 5/8 inches wide camera cutout, allowing the recessed camera to avoid direct contact. The bottom panel had a trapezoidal cutout, which measured 1 7/8 inches wide along the base, 2 1/4 inches wide along the top, and 5!16 inches thick. To install the phone within the Sena leather case, you will need to slide the upper left corner of the phone into the case first followed by the top right of the phone into the case (volume/toggle). With both of the top corners securely seated within the case, press the lower right and then the lower left corners into the case. The instruction manual did a great job detailing the installation process and about the developing patina.

If you desire the minimal level of protection a bumper style case is what you should look for. In this case, the Leatherskin Sena case added bezel protection. camera protection, volume/power button protection, and easy access to the lightning adapter port. As noted above, the attractive case fit the phone well and was quite pleasing to the eye. Despite the positives listed above, there were a few things that I would update in future versions of this case. First, even though the sub $40 price tag seemed fair, I struggled to understand the utility of the included drawstring bag; what did the bag add to the overarching experience? I would have preferred the price to drop by a few more dollars or to have had the option of adding a screen protector. Second, I would increase the size of the volume toggle cutout, as the narrow cutout proved to be difficult to access. Thirdly, I wish that Sena would have included more information on their packaging; truthfully, much of this information was present online but left me curious. The case will not provide waterproof protection like the Waterproof cases from Catalyst, nor will they add functionality to the phone like a wallet style folio. However, it will add a degree of drop protection and it definitely adds to style points. I did not see Mil-Std drop ratings and thus I would consider adding a screen protector to partner with the ascribed bezel protection. Overall I would give the case an A rating of about 90%. You will find the case to meet your expectations.

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Originally published at on July 7, 2020.



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