All the leather has been removed for the Ekster Aluminum Cardholder wallet, making it slim and sleek with great capacity with the backplate like the Ekster Senate.
(if you want to see all the features and how many cards and cash it can hold, please watch the video)
Ekster, best known for leather wrapped box wallets out of the Netherlands released something that might not seem important but it provided a wallet I was always hoping that they would ship.
Named the Ekster Aluminum Cardholder wallet, we see it’s naked. Up until the release of this wallet, all Ekster wallets have been leather wrapped around the metal box. Without the leather makes this nice and sleek and clean. On the rear of the box, held in place by an elastic strap is a metal back plate. This back plate has a channel in it which keeps the elastic in place, preventing the back plate from moving around.
The back plate is where you can place additional items beyond the 6 cards which fit in the box itself. Additional cards, cash folded twice, receipts, whatever, it really provides expandability beyond the box itself.
Embossed cards will reduce the capacity in the box, so as you would expect this is due to the raised letters and numbers on the cards, that’s what embossing means, it creates greater thickness. So if you have embossed cards you could put them in the backplate, leaving more space for flat cards in the box. Minimalist carry would be 6 cards since that’s what the box carries, but the company recommends up to 15 cards with 6 in the box, up to 9 on the back plate. From a quality perspective it’s designed in the Netherlands, and is made in China, from 6061 T6 aluminum.
It’s interesting to point out how this box is manufactured compared to other box wallets. The entire box is created from one piece of CNC’d aluminum, with the mechanical assembly inserted at the bottom. The assembly contains the trigger mechanism in, as well as the riser which pushes the cards up when the trigger is pressed. Other box vendors use two pieces of metal that are screwed onto a piece of plastic or another piece of metal.
A lot can be said about the quality of the trigger mechanism because we’ve seen card trigger mechanisms on box wallets that just shoot cards everywhere. The Ekster trigger and lifter mechanism is smooth and has proven over time to be durable. The way to prevent shooting cards is done through a friction strip placed on one or both sides of the box interior.
This is not unique, other vendors do it similar to this, and is the best way to do it. The Senate card holder from Ekster is very similar but is wrapped in leather and when I did a carry test on the Senate, this back plate was excellent because it was able to carry everything I needed that wouldn’t fit inside the box.
Overall, I really like the thin footprint of this wallet more so than the versions with leather on them. It measures 4.1 x 2.3 x .29” and weighs 87 grams. I’ve watched Ekster grow the past few years into an organization that is developing their brand, releasing excellent products, and have great support, so I’m impressed with where they’re going.
Now for the final score. For quality a 4, price at 3, features a 4, usability a 4, and perception of 4. That gives us a score of 3.8 out of 5.
The slimmed down version of Ekster's popular box wallet, the expanded storage capabilities with the back plate allow everything except coins to be carried.