Review: Terforma iSleeve

The Terforma iSleeve is sure to protect your iPod from klutzes (December 6th, 2003)

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Product Manufacturer: Terforma

Price: $49

The Good

  • Large amounts of protective rubber. Large low-profile belt clip. Easy access to front of iPod. Elastic for jogging.

The Bad

  • Easy access to front of iPod means rare potential for accidental damage. Price.

There are a few things we know for a certainty. People who buy Apple products appreciate good design. Good designs are polarizing; People either like them or they don't.

The Terforma iSleeve is such a design, polarizing.

The Terforma iSleeve is an interesting one. Made out of thick black rubber, it looks sure to protect your ipod in a drop from a short height. It has a large wide belt clip which is mounted on an insert inside the case. This belt clip is low-profile, and does not protrude from the case when you lay it flat on a desk. This insert reverses, and puts the clip inside the case with an elastic band to go around your hand, perfect for jogging.

The side of the insert-back with the belt clip on is formed in such a way as to provide a place to wind the ear-bud headphones cord around and store the ear-buds so that you have the whole ipod neatly there at ready when you aren't listening.

As I mentioned before, this design won't appeal to everyone. Is it too bulky to fit in your pocket? Yes. Is it protective of everything but the screen? Yes- and there's something to be said for that. Within the community of folks who try out different iPod cases, there's a debate on whether or not a case should have a clear piece of plastic to protect the screen. Some folks say yes, every bit of protection for the player is a good thing, while some say that any grain of dust or dirt that gets behind the screen protector will make marks on the screen, better to have it open to the air. To be fair to the iSleeve, it's quite thick on the front of the case to prevent any damage from dropping the iPod on it's face.

My recommendation is to use a piece of the PDA screen protector film, cut down to fit the iPod screen. Doing so while using the iSleeve provides a great solution, one where the iPod is easy to use with accessories in the case, and easy to get out of the case for the rare occasion when that is necessary.

The real downside here is the price. The iSleeve costs $49 USD. The upper end of most cases is $29 to $39. Is it worth ten dollars more? This depends on how badly you want the extra protection, ability to leave the iPod in a case while using the iTrip, and whether or not you need a place to store your headphones.

In conclusion, I like it. I do. I like the shape of it. I like the elastic and the belt clip. I like the storage for ear-buds. Moreover, this is a small company, but they aren't ignoring the large number of owners of original iPods: They make models for both old iPod and new.

by Victor Marks


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