Review: iPod Shuffle TuffWrap

Excellent protection and well designed cover (October 28th, 2005)

MacNN Rating:

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Product Manufacturer: XtremeMac

Price: $23.95 US

The Good

  • Thick silicone protection for your iPod Shuffle. Good variety of colors.

The Bad

  • Companion SuperHook product is poorly made and cant\' be trusted. Not one problem with the TuffWrap!

XtremeMac is one company that's been very proactive in creating a wide variety of iPod products. They create products that protect and enhance your iPod. As a new iPod Shuffle owner, I decided to give a few of their products a workout.

After almost scratching my Shuffle against a jacket zipper, I clothed it in a bright red TuffWrap. Next I added a SuperHook so that I could suspend the Shuffle from the zipper pull, instead of a neck lanyard. The SuperHook is a carabiner style clip attached to a white cap that slips over the USB port on the Shuffle. The cap didn't feel all that secure, but it seemed to hold.

Designed for Daily Use

The TuffWrap is a thick silicone cover that comes with two caps, one for the lanyard and one regular cap. It covers the whole iPod, except the control wheel. The sides are ribbed so that it doesn't slip from your grip and might even stay put on a dashboard. There's a slight indent above the wheel (the headphone end). This indent is a great feature, because when your iPod is connected to their FM transmitter, or used in a dark place, you can immediately tell where the volume control is located without having to look at the Shuffle.

Another very useful feature is the thin skin-like cover over the on/off switch. I actually had trouble sliding the switch until I put on the TuffWrap. It adds just enough traction to slide the switch to the first stop, which I could not do previously.

tuffwrap cover

Protection You Can Count On

Feeling secure, I took my outfitted Shuffle to an Apple store to show it off to a Genius friend. He put the products through a rigorous test, much to my chagrin. The clip didn't hold, and I gasped as I watched in horror while my Shuffle arched about ten feet in the air and landed solidly on the imported Italian slate floor. Expecting to retrieve a doorstop, the Shuffle showed no adverse effects. The TuffWrap protected it well, and the Shuffle works fine!

SuperHook Falls Short

The SuperHook didn't hold the Shuffle securely at all. It could even be slipped off the cap without feeling it. I don't recommend using it to attach the Shuffle to a backpack, belt or anything, as advertised. I'd rate it a one-star product, only because the clip works; but the cover doesn't fit tightly on the iPod at all. The TuffWrap on the other hand is wonderful. It fulfills all the requirements for an excellent cover to protect your Shuffle. It's a 5-star product in my book. I suspect the Nano version will be just as durable, but will let you know.

Colors For Everyone

The TuffWrap comes in 3-packs, in a variety of colors. The packages include Pink, Yellow and Purple, or Sky, Tangerine, and Lime, or the good ole American Red, White, and Blue. Each package retails for a reasonable $25.95 and includes a lifetime warranty. The only oddity I found is that my package is labeled TuffWrapz, but the web site refers to them as a TuffWrap.

by Ilene Hoffman


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