- Review Price: £16.49
One of the clearest indicators that the iPod is the most successful product since somebody first thought of chopping only a small amount from the end of a loaf of bread, is the sheer amount of third party products associated with it. You can get speakers or all shapes and sizes, but one of the most popular products are protective cases.
It seems that no sooner have we bought our shiny new musical toy that we have to immediately wrap it in the protective walls of a case. One has to wonder if consumers actually realised this whether as many would choose to buy an iPod over its competitors as many purchases are purely based on looks alone. However, the continual reports of scratches and damage seems to have done little to dent the iPods popularity.
Lucky then that there are so many cases to choose from. We’ve looked at a couple of different cases in the past such as a smart effort from ProPorta and some not so appealing ones from iSkin. However, these iVak cases from Vakaadoo are, at least according to the general consensus in the office – the best case we’ve yet seen for the iPod.
We were actually sent three cases to look at – two from the Domino series and one from the Soft Feel Series. The former has a smooth lacquer finish, while the latter has, as the Vakaadoo web site has it, a “liquid-rubber coating for an easy-grip finish, available in six bright colours”. Our one was pink. Ahem. It was a limited addition set with what Vakaadoo calls a ‘Vakwrap’, a small plastic piece of plastic with which you can wrap your headphone chord to keep it shorter.
Aside from the finish the two types of cases work in the same way and are the same price so I’ve reviewed them together. The RRP at the Vakaadoo web site is £24.95, but you can pick them up at www.24-7mobileaccessories.co.uk for only £19.99. If you don’t mind not getting Vakwrap you can get it even cheaper at Podzone for only £16.49.
So what’s special about the iVaks? It’s simply the fact that they provide complete protection for the front, back and sides, including the screen, yet what they ”don’t” cover, is the click wheel, or the ports at the top and bottom or the hold switch, which is exactly what you want.
Not only that, but if you get the black of the white variety, from a distance they look almost exactly like the original iPods. Many cases that offer total protection tend to dramatically alter the look of the iPod or require you to life a flap. The ProPorta cases are a case in point – in my opinion they are very fine, smart looking leather cases, but if you want retain the look of your iPod or don’t want to have to life a cover then they’re not ideal.
The design of the case is clever. The case comes in two halves, a front and back, which before you put the iPod in can be easily separated with the fingers. You simply pop the iPod into the back and click the front on – simple.
That done you’ve got a cover that protects your iPod completely, including the screen, which is quite unusual. Despite this, it any harder to use the iPod. Indeed, as it matches the shape on the iPod, it doesn’t even change the look. It’s essentially a hard outer shell that makes it a little more bulky, but not unattractively so. On more than one occasion people commented that they didn’t realise my iPod was in a case until they actually picked it up.
If would be cool if the rear section was clear as then you’d still be able to see the iconic silver back, which you’d definitely want to if you had an engraving on it.
The downside of the tight fitting case with the click in place design is that it does feel as if your never going to get your iPod out again. You will need to however, as after a couple of weeks the inside of the screen had gathered some dust and I wanted to wipe it clear. To that end, Vakaadoo has included an ‘iVak key’, which is actually no more complex than a extra thick credit card. Slide that into the small gap in the sides and you can free your iPod again. It’s just like opening a walnut.
Personally I prefer the lacquered Domino case – it feels more like the iPod itself but the Soft Feel will have its admirers, not least because they come in a range of colours – pink, green, blue, purple and bizarrely, black and white. Either way, the iVaks are now top of our list as our favourite iPod case, and my 60 gigger (not a word) hasn’t left the safety of its new shell since it first went in there.
An iPod nano version is flagged on the Vakaadoo web site as coming soon, so those with the non hard disk based iPod, which is probably most of you, should get something as good soon.
A refreshingly simple iPod case, that literally covers all bases, without making your iPod harder to use, or that much less attractive to look at. It’s even quite affordable. Highly recommended.
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