Introduction

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The Vaja X50v leather case, which also included an “SD keeper”, came packaged in a slick black box bearing the Vaja logo. The sample that Vaja sent us was used, so the box the case came in was a little roughed up, but it’s professional and appealing design was nevertheless a strong testament to the product inside. A smaller box of similar design carried the SD keeper.



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Inside the boxes were (surprise) the leather X50v and SD-card cases. Besides the two cases, there was the usual mishmash of advertising pamphlets, a Vaja ID-card with some warranty information on the back, and a small booklet with tips for proper care of the leather case. And though I have not found the need to “once a week polish with a warm dry and clean cloth or soft and mild brush,” some of the tips are practical for those who do not have experience with leather.

Useability

Going from the generic fabric case that Dell packages with the X50v to the leather Vaja case opened a new world of convenience and functionality. Instead of having to slip my PDA in and out of the constricted mesh of my old Dell case in order to use it, I can now merely unbuckle and flip open the Vaja case to access all its functions. Even with the case securely closed, the cutouts on the sides, top, and back allow for access to every button on the PDA.



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The shot above shows the cutouts on the left side of the case. It allows accessibility to the lock, audio record, and wireless activation buttons.



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This picture shows the cutouts mentioned above more clearly and shows the hole for the headphone jack.



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There is a bottom cutout for the power/data slot. However, this is only useful if you connect your PDA with a cable. The cutout does not allow you to sync or charge the X50v using a dock. Unfortunately, the case must be removed in order to connect the X50v with a dock.

Usability Continued

Vaja uses a magnetic buckle to keep the flip-up top secure when the screen is not being used. Snap open the buckle and the top flips up to reveal two SD and credit card slots, and a larger pouch that can hold some cash or business cards.



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The case measures about 5 x 3 x 1 inches and wraps snugly around my X50v. But even though there are several compartments, the case does not look like it could hold too many extra items. Besides, Vaja warns that overstuffing money pockets or credit slots can stretch the leather and cause it unnecessary stress.



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The leather SD keeper also utilizes magnets to keep it shut when needed. It features a hard shell with a leather interior and exterior and holds two SD/MMC cards.

Design

Before going into detail, I can say without a doubt that the Vaja X50v leather case is the most stylish and attention-attracting case available for the X50v. (And I do not doubt that this is true for most of Vaja’s handheld leather products.) The finely stitched cracked-leather surface boasts of high quality manufacturing.



My X50v slipped easily into the leather frame of the case. And with the top closed, your hitherto object of geekdom is transformed into something you will not be ashamed of carrying around.



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The sample Vaja sent me was dark-orange in color and styled in Vitelino leather, leather that is–according to Vaja–“achieved by polishing with extreme pressure by rollers made of agate, steel or glass.” The matching stitches and metal embossed Vaja logo completes the look, though for an extra fee it can be replaced by a custom logo of your choice.



Flipping open the top reveals the same consistently styled and polished leather, while a closer inspection shows a ring of a harder material surrounding the screen area for better support in that area. Overall, the design element of the Vaja case surpasses all comparable consumer cases.

Conclusion

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With a case that is both highly usable and so elegantly designed, it might seem as though there is no reason not to order the Vaja leather case for your X50 series handheld. But there are two factors that might cause some hesitation in your purchase: the price and the wait. At $74.90 for the most basic model, the style and fashionability of Vaja comes at a steep price; even the 2 card SD keepers are $30 a piece.



Secondly, a custom Vaja case takes at least a month to arrive. Vaja attributes this to the long process of assembling various materials for a customer’s specific order. However, the one month wait might be a turn off for some, especially when other (though not as quality) leather cases can be had in a few days time.



Vaja truly offers a functional and stylish solution for PDA users with their line of cases. And their leather X50 series case is not exception. If you are willing to overlook the month-long wait for a custom case and have no qualms with shelling out the premium, then Vaja is the perfect solution for you. After all, it is the best readily available consumer case money can buy.



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SLRating: 8.5/10



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