I recently reviewed the Grid Studio framed Samsung Galaxy S1; shortly after a different brand called Geekmem asked if I would like to check out their framed iPhone 4S.
If you look online, there are lots of copycats, I am not even sure who originally started this framed disassembled consumer tech art, but I assume it was Grid that was the first to commercialize it and flood social media with it.
It is not just Grid Studio and Geekmem, either. On Etsy, there are numerous other companies doing the same thing, such as DisassembledArt and FUNBOXDesign.
So, who has the better product Geekmem or Grid Studio?
Geekmem only has 5 product options at the moment. These are all $139 (£101) or $169 ($123), with the Geekmem 4s I was sent being $139
Grid Studio has an extensive product range, with 25 different dismantled products. They have gone down the route of pretending everything has a higher RRP and having permanent discounts.
Pricing starts at $129 for the Nokia E71, then the iPhone 4S is $139, and the iPhone 3GS is $169, so both the iPhones are the same price as Geekmem.
Prices increase up to $269 for an original Game Boy or $399 for the original iPhone.
Grid Studio is located in China, and they say they have warehouses in the United States and the Czech Republic.
I think delivery took about 14 days and the package arrived in good condition. Grid Studio gift wraps the frame as standard, and it looks impressive.
I assume Geekmem is also based in China, and the delivery was about two weeks. Unfortunately, opening the package also ripped the gift wrap on it, but it was less impressive than the Grid Studio. The frame was also in a presentation box with a Geekmem logo. This arrived damaged, I wouldn’t blame Geekmem, things like this easily happen with the postal service.
Neither product incurred additional delivery fees such as VAT or duties.
Cancellation / Return / Refund
Once shipped, neither company offer refunds on products unless it is a fabrication fault or not as described. One concern here is that if the product is damaged during shipping, is this something that justifies a refund? And what is the tolerance of damage do they allow? My Geekmem box was damaged, and the plastic frame had a blemish, not an issue as it was for me personally, but I wouldn’t be too happy giving that to someone for Christmas, and I doubt this damage would warrant a refund/return.
Neither company explains the returns process should you need to return it.
Built Quality and Overall appearance
The overall appearance of the Grid Studio frame is better, in my opinion, and the build quality is definitely better. I prefer the black frame of the Grid Studio, I think it suites consumer electronics better, especially when the phones inside are black too.
There is a small bit of damage to the plastic glass on the Geekmem, this was likely done during transit, but the actual plastic is a lot thinner than the Grid Studio frame.
The Geekmem has the advantage of a pop-out stand on the rear, whereas you need to hag the Grid Studio, or prop it up.
Overall the Grid Studio is better than the Geekmem frame, in my opinion. But there is not a massive difference, some of the issues the Geekmem has are due to transit. If this hadn’t occurred, then the differences would have been negligible, just a slight build quality advantage for Grid Studio.