iPhone 6(s+)

Otterbox Defender vs Ballistic Hardcore Review – iPhone 6 Cases


Which case is tougher? Find out in our Otterbox Defender vs Ballistic Hardcore Review

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Here’s 5 notable differences between these 2 cases in our Ballistic Hardcore vs Otterbox Defender Review. We’ve fully reviewed both these cases and done some pretty awful things in them with actual iPhones in it. In our opinion, the Hardcore is the better case as we gave it a score of 3.9 Eh’s out of 5 while the Defender got 3.4 Eh’s out of 5.

At Mobile Reviews Eh!, we base our reviews on actual usage. These cases, are tough so we tried to figure out how tough they are. The Otterbox Defender took a 40 ft flight and the iPhone was ok (Sort of) The Hardcore says you can drop it from 12 ft which we did and we’re glad to say that it fully protected the iPhone from a 12 ft drop which is pretty incredible.

Once we feel comfortable enough to review a case, we grade them against the same scoring system for all our tough cases to ensure that we’re able to give you a consistent way to compare these tough iPhone cases.
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Difference #1 – The Ballistic Hardcore is much bigger. Sort of.

The Ballistic Hardcore is definitely bigger than the Otterbox Defender but its also quite modular which means that you can choose the level of protection that you want to carry around. The Hardcore has a thick rubber bumper that is removable which removes approx. 50% of the bulk. The inner case is still pretty tough (we’re guessing it’ll protect your iPhone as much as the Defender) and the best part is that it still fits belt holster that comes with the Hardcore.

Difference #2 – The Ballistic Hardcore offers better protection that the Otterbox Defender

In terms of protection, Ballistic claims that the Hardcore can be dropped from a height of 12 ft which we’ve done and confirmed to be true (iPhone didn’t bend). Otterbox claims that the Defender is tough.

Which case would you choose?

Difference #3 – Both these iPhone cases are poor at dust protection

Both the Ballistic Hardcore and Otterbox Defender will not cover your iPhone 6 fully. There are cutouts for the front-facing cameras, the rear-facing cameras and speaker cutouts. A big difference between the two cases is that the Otterbox Defender has  a membrane that covers the Touch ID sensor which but this is offset by the large gap at the top of the case that allows for dust and debris to get between the iPhone’s screen and screen protector.

Difference #4 – Using the Otterbox Defender will suck the joy out of using your iPhone

The gap between the iPhone and screen protector on the Otterbox Defender is quite significant. In fact, it will definitely change how you use your iPhone in the case since you’re going to resort to stabbing your iPhone rather than tapping and swiping.

There is still a gap Ballistic Hardcore but it is much less noticeable. Accessing your swipe menus is much easier on this case since the screen protector extends the touchable area of the iPhone.

Difference #5 – Which do you prefer? A wobbly looking touchscreen or a fuzzy one?

Viewing your iPhone through these cases is going to be difficult since they’re going to distort the image in one way or another. On the Ballistic Hardcore, the screen protector will diffuse the iPhone’s touchscreen (make it look pixel). On the Defender, reflections are going to be wobbly and because of that, the glare is going to be multiplied because of it.


Have questions about our Otterbox Defender vs. Ballistic Hardcore Review? Please ask them on our Google+ page or on our Facebook page.



  1. Marc-andre

    April 17, 2015 at 3:39 pm

    Hello there just got on your youtube video and realy enjoy it:) i recently bought an iphone6 plus and Realy need BIG protection ive seen a case called snowlizard look indestructible… But only on the iphone6 standard… Please help me 🙂 thank

  2. pjannotti3@gmail.com

    July 24, 2015 at 5:35 am

    Dropped hardcore going 20 mph. No dings – no problems

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