By Scott Criqui
There are times when we test products that are fishing specific, like a fly rod for example, and then there are times when we review more of an all-around product, like the well-designed E-Merse Neo XL from Seattle Sports.
The benefit to receiving this type of product, is the ability to rigorously evaluate it under various circumstances. In the case of the NeoXL, I tried my best to make it fail. But the only failure in this case was me, as it was up to the task in every way.
I hung it from a backpack swinging for hours by the quick release lanyard and it never separated. I submerged the case for hours on end in both still and moving water and not even a single drop entered its compartment.
Touch-screen sensitivity as well as facial recognition both work flawlessly through the clear protective material, and while there is a small degradation of image quality for picture taking, it is hard to tell unless you zoom in for a closer look.
I was sent the neon yellow color, which makes finding a dropped device easy, but I found myself tucking the phone into my waders so that the bright color didn’t stand out to skittish wild trout in our local gin-clear spring creeks.
Seattle Sports offers a fantastic blue steel color available that would be perfect for applications like mine, where it might be more important for the case to be less visible. I have one of today’s larger phones but there was still room to spare, providing you don’t try to stuff in your device with a large case.
If you are looking for a way to protect your phone while out on the river, you can’t go wrong with the E-Merse NeoXL. Let’s face it, we have all used plastic sandwich bags to keep our phones dry, but the NeoXL is a much more protective option, with far better performance features. And it’s a sustainable option for all of us concerned with protecting and conserving our coldwater resources. Considering the cost of devices these days, spending $18 to add the NeoXL to your on-stream arsenal is a no-brainer.