Review: Executive Leather Case for video iPod

A stylish leather case in black or pink for your video iPod. (November 20th, 2006)

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Product Manufacturer: Speck Products

Price: $34.95 US

The Good

  • Nice appearance. Good fit. Magnetic snap front cover.

The Bad

  • Headphone and dock connector holes too small. If you don't want a belt clip, I hope you like pink.

An iPod is not really complete without a protective case to safeguard its scratch-prone exterior, and Speck Products offers a two attractive Smart Leather Cases designed for the 5G iPod video. The Executive black leather has an attached belt-clip and the pink Lady has a wrist strap. I tested the Executive Leather Case and except couple of minor gripes, am pleased with the product.

Professional appearance

The Executive Leather Case features a very attractive black leather exterior with fine stitching. A band of elastic material inset on the sides accommodates the different iPod video models. The headphone jack and dock connector are accessible with through the closed cases, but makes the package too bulky to fit on a dock. Unfortunately, there is also no way to access the hold switch without lifting the magnet-secured front flap. The excellent build quality of the case leaves me thinking that it may very well outlive my beloved iPod. It is easy to insert or remove my iPod, but not so easy that my iPod could fall out during use and go crashing to the floor. The interior of the case has a soft leather inner lining with a velvety texture.

The clip

The leather belt clip is a nice addition, because it is secure and more versatile than the belt loops I have seen on other cases. This clip is easily removed from a belt and may be attached to other things, like backpacks or other thick straps. The Lady pink model has only a wrist strap because, according to Speck, women are less prone to use belt-clips.

Minor Design Flaws

One issue I have with the Executive case is its headphone hole. While it is small enough to accommodate most portable headphones or earbuds, some headphone cables have wider-than-normal connections and their end pieces just will not fit through the hole, resulting in a partial or loose connection. This is a definite concern for the audiophile with bulky headsets, as they may have similar troubles. I have similar issues with the dock connector slot on the bottom of the case, as it is large enough to connect to the iPod dock cable but not large enough for it to lock into place all the way. Normally you squeeze the sides of the dock connector to release the iPod, but when using this case I could free the dock connector with a gentle tug. If you lose dock connection while synchronizing your iPod, you can end up with file corruption, or even worse, you could damage your iPod if it unplugs during a firmware update. The dock and headphone openings need to be larger. I was able to stretch the headphone hole to make my car audio cable fit, but enlarging the dock connector is not possible. I recommend removing the case when you need to synchronize the iPod.

I really liked the Executive Leather Case, and I think it is a good investment for your iPod. I was also apprehensive about putting a magnet so close to my iPod, but had no problems with it. The Executive is a solid buy, especially if you need a stylish and professional looking case.

Edited by Ilene Hoffman, Reviews Editor

by Alexander Munro


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