Bam Hightech Cases vs. Carbon Fiber Cases
One of the most common questions we get asked here is: “what is the difference between Bam Hightech cases and carbon fiber cases? Is there a difference?”
Our goal of writing this article is to give you a clear understanding of the Hightech cases. And by the end of the article, you’ll know exactly why Hightech cases are better than carbon fiber cases!
So let’s get started by answering the most basic question.
Is A Bam Hightech Case A Carbon Fiber Case?
Bam Hightech cases are NOT carbon fiber cases. To clear the confusion, they have carbon “looks”.
So when you see a Hightech case, you may see metallic looking outer shells with names like black carbon, silver carbon, tweed, metallic silver, etc.
These are just the “looks” of the case. Because...well, metallic cases look cool!
But Bam does not use carbon fiber sheets for the purpose of protecting your instrument.
Which brings us to the next question you may be thinking.
What’s Wrong With Carbon Fiber?
The short answer: it heats up like an oven.
Carbon fiber violin cases were all the rage for quite awhile. That’s because carbon fiber is a sturdy and lightweight material. We see it in industries like high-end bicycles and automobiles.
This gives everybody a sense that carbon fiber is a protective material. Which it is… except for fragile wooden instruments that could lose their quality sound due to heat damage.
If the outside temperature were 86 degrees Fahrenheit, the interior temperature of a carbon fiber case can reach 104 degrees within half an hour!
But Some Carbon Fiber Cases Are Cheap. Should I Get One?
Answer: it’s probably not a real carbon fiber case, so no.
Another issue with carbon fiber cases is all the copycat cases out there. Go on Amazon, and you might find carbon fiber violin cases as low as $129!
The price may be attractive, but we can guarantee that the case will NOT protect your violin.
And here’s why:
Carbon fiber protection is an expensive process. Companies have to mass produce large amounts of carbon fiber cases to recoup the cost of getting the entire process set up in the first place.
A $200 case will not cover this expensive process. So how do companies sell a carbon fiber violin case for $200?
By using cheap craftsmanship and thinner carbon fiber sheets. Sure you’ll still get a lightweight case. But you’ll be sacrificing strength, protection, and durability.
Not to mention the cheap hardware used to lower the cost of the case, such as locks and hinges.
What Is Bam Hightech?
Hightech is the resulting material of a sophisticated manufacturing process that Bam patented in the year 2000.
It consists of 3 layers. An outer ABS layer, a polyurethane foam core layer, and another type of ABS layer. The combination of these 3 layers gives incredible strength and lightness.
Why Is Hightech Better?
Hightech is actually lighter than carbon fiber. You may see both cases are similar in weight. But that’s because Hightech cases use higher quality hardware, such as locks and hinges.
Some carbon fiber cases may use lightweight hardware to achieve an overall lighter case. But this hardware can also be weaker and less durable.
The rigidity of the 3-ply structure gives the Hightech case incredible strength and protection. Most of the cases are about 8-10 mm thick. Whereas Many carbon fiber cases are only 1 mm thick (to achieve lightness).
What's incredible is that even with the greater thickness of the Hightech cases, they're still lighter than carbon fiber!
It’s More Temperature-Resistant
As mentioned earlier, carbon fiber cases can heat up quickly under a hot sun. Hightech cases however, have the polyurethane foam layer that actually insulates and slows down heat penetration.
If a Hightech case was sitting under a hot sun in 104 degree weather, the heat will not penetrate the case before a long period of time.
The three-layer structure also makes the case incredibly rigid. This allows the seal around the case to truly be air and water tight. You don’t have to worry about rainwater seeping in!
It’s More Stylish!
Hightech cases come in an assortment of colors and styles due to their efficient manufacturing process.
You probably haven’t seen too many different styles or colors of carbon fiber cases. And that’s because they’re mass produced to cover initial costs.
And it’s very financially risky for brands to mass produce each style and color of a carbon fiber case. Which is why you often see carbon fiber cases in the one and only safest color - black.
Because Hightech cases do not require mass production, Bam has the opportunity to get creative and experiment with a lot more styles and colors.
A Hightech case will do a better job of protecting your wooden instrument compared to a carbon fiber case. They’re definitely not the cheapest cases, but it’s a worthy investment if you’re serious about protecting your instrument.
There are still decent carbon fiber cases out there. But they’re usually more expensive than the Hightech cases. And you’ll always have the issue of temperature resistance.
Plus there are so many copycats of carbon fiber cases, it’s hard to tell what is real!
Hightech is a name that has been patented by Bam since 2000. So you won’t see any fake cases with that name.