Review: Marware Sportfolio Sleeve

A MacBook sleeve with an outer pocket. (March 1st, 2007)

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Product Manufacturer: Marware, Inc.

Price: $29.95 US

The Good

  • Excellent durable construction. Made of quality materials. Front accessory pocket for your iPod or phone. Side grips for easy handling.

The Bad

  • Front accessory holder could be bigger. Only available in black with a blue stripe.

Straight from the labs of Marware, the Sportfolio Sleeve is the case I'm using in my travels for my podcast recording sessions. Its spacious interior along with the ability to store my iPod in the outside pocket means that my portable Apple collection is always with me.

Sizes for all MacBooks

Available in 13-inch MacBook and 15.4 or17-inch MacBook Pro versions, the interior of the sleeve fits my MacBook Pro 15-inch model comfortably. Even with the Speck See-Thru polycarbonate shell attached to my MacBook Pro, I can fit it inside and close the zipper without a struggle.

Neoprene seems to be the material of choice for Marware, as they use it in many of their products. Not only is this one of the best materials for cases, it is probably the best suited as well, because it is lightweight. Neoprene's soft characteristics offer a flexible fit because it stretches and is somewhat waterproof.

Whilst we don't recommend you take this case scuba diving or swimming anytime soon, for the occasional accident or walk in the rain you can be confident that your expensive Mac laptop won't get wet.

Thoughtful design

An important design feature in any form-fitting sleeve is the zipper. You do not want the teeth to scratch the polycarbonate plastic or the anodized aluminum chassis of your precious notebook. Marware provides a lining that separates the zipper from the interior of the case, which is very important. Without it, you could end up scratching the casing of your notebook each time you open and close the zipper.

Rubber grips are integrated in to the bottom and the sides of the sleeve for easy handling. Some sleeves use the same material all over and if it's anything like neoprene, it could very easily slip out of your hands when you are in a rush. Not so with the Sportfolio, the rubber sides ensure you have a comfortable no slip grip.

Convenient Pocket

On the exterior, you have the royal blue Orca skin pocket, as it is described in the product literature. It is made to hold either your phone or more likely, an iPod of some description. I can imagine some situations where this would not be ideal but in general, it is great to be able to keep my iPod out of my pockets but close enough for me to use it while I'm on the move. Unfortunately, it is just too small to hold larger items like my notebook mouse or a larger digital compact camera. A size increase in the pocket would be welcome.

Marware has again surpassed themselves with a good quality product at a reasonable price. Without any extra gimmicky features or bold design tastes, the Sportfolio Sleeve makes for an ideal companion for your portable Mac.

You can order Marware products from Dr. Bott (www.drbott.com).

Edited by Ilene Hoffman, Reviews Editor

by Onwah Tsang


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