Review: Ballistic SG iPhone 4 Case. #ballisticsg

You may recall the original Ballistic iPhone 4 case that we took a look at back in early October. The general consensus was that it was a very durable, protective case. But that robust construction came at the cost of design (admit it, it’s pretty ugly) as well as usability. The edges of the screen were hard to hit because of the high-rise sides of the case in particular. And then right before Halloween, Ballistic announced a new lighter case that still encapsulated everything Ballistic was about.

Introducing the Ballistic SG. A no-nonsense iPhone 4 case with a prettier face and thinner waistline. Jump inside for the review…

Design, Apperance

Whereas the original Ballistic case was big, thick, and unsightly, the Ballistic SG is svelte, strong, and quite the looker. The two cases I received are black on black and black on red. The black on black is obviously a slick choice for flying under the radar. The black on red will definitely let you stand out, though not like “woah god”! It’s more of a “hmm” that’s interesting. Subtle shock and aww folks, subtle shock and awww.

Function, Construction, & Build Quality

Just like it’s bigger brother, the Ballistic SG is built to take a beating. Featuring a tripple-layered approach to protection, your precious iPhone 4 is wrapped in two different soft silicon layers and a thick polycarbonate exoskeleton. When combined, the trifecta of barriers equals the best of both worlds. You have your shock absorption provided by the more squishy layers and your crush/scratch resistance thanks to the thicker and more rigid plastic.

On the corners, there is a slight build up of silicon. It may at first feel or look weird. But it’s a really good design decision from an engineering perspective. A fair amount of time when you drop your phone, it’s the edges that reach out for the cold hard concrete first. Every extra millimeter of shock absorption that we can eek out the better.

Heavy texters will be pleased to know that the sides of the Ballistic SG are surprisingly extremely low — almost flush with the phone itself. Don’t let that concern you, however. The case still has enough clearance above the glass to keep it from touching the surface of whatever you lay it on. Where this flush design really pays off is on the edges of the screen. Tapping those last keys on the far left or right is just the same as if you didn’t have any case on at all.


I was actually quite surprised with the Ballistic SG. I remember when I saw it unveiled a couple of weeks ago I was intrigued, but not too excited given that I had a rather ho-hum experience with the original Ballistic case. But I was pleasantly surprised when I opened the box containing two freshly minted Ballistic SG’s. With that said, I have yet another iPhone 4 case to give away (not that I’m complaining). So keep checking back for that.

The Ballistic SG for the iPhone 4 retails for $34.99 at If you are prone to dropping your gadgets or live a particularly rough lifestyle, you probably will want this case. It’s a little more expensive than the similar in build XtremeMac Micro Shield, but rings in $10 higher. Comparing those two however comes more down to looks than anything.

Another solid iPhone 4 case that winds Gadgetsteria’s seal of approval.

A special thank you to Max Borges and Ballistic


  • dm500s

    A big fan so far. This is the smaller version of the case of HC, about what the shipment Defender. Provides protection in a form factor much thinner.

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