2014 iPad iPhone iPod Buyers' Guide from iLounge.com

$50
Cases

Speck TrimSleeve for MacBook Air

There’s no shortage now of protective cases and sleeves for the MacBook Air, but new options are always appreciated. Speck is probably best known in the Mac world for its clip-on plastic cases, and now has a new sleeve option: TrimSleeve for MacBook Air ($50). Unlike the SeeThru series, this one only protects your computer when it’s folded shut, but it looks good and is reasonably priced. Read More

$60-$100
Cases

Hex Recon Sonic + Source Backpacks

While Hex is probably best known to iLounge readers for its iPod nano watchbands and iPhone-ready wallets, the company’s lineup of Mac-ready backpacks is becoming more impressive all the time. Witness Recon Sonic ($100) and Recon Source ($60), two military surplus-style bags made from charcoal- or khaki-colored heavy canvas material with webbed straps and leather zipper pulls; Sonic is the larger version with an iPad-ready pocket up top, and Source is a little smaller with an iPad-sized pocket on the bottom front. Both look seriously handsome, and differ in the way they allocate their internal space. Read More

$40-$60
Cases

Maclocks.com MacBook Air Lock

We’ve been looking for a way to secure the latest MacBook Airs for a while; the big issue has been the lack of a lock slot. At one point, it seemed that Griffin’s TechSafe Cable Lock System would do the trick, but that wound up not working out as it should have. Thankfully, we’ve finally found a way to secure the Air with Maclocks.com’s MacBook Air Lock ($40-$60). It definitely takes a different approach than any security systems we’ve seen before—one that some users will be more comfortable with than others—but appears to do the trick. Read More

$40
Cases

SwitchEasy Thins for MacBook Air

SwitchEasy has a history of releasing really great cases for iPads, iPhones, and iPod touches over the years—now it’s making a foray into MacBook Air sleeves with Thins, available for both 11” and 13” models. It’s based on the design of the company’s earlier Thins for iPad 2 ($40), but customized for Apple’s ultra-small laptops. We found the tablet version to be worthy of recommending, and this edition seems to carry over a lot of the things that we liked. Read More

¥4,980/$40
Cases

Uncommon Sleeve for MacBook Air

Uncommon is best-known for its custom iPhone and iPod touch cases; in fact, those are the only products available on its site right now. But now the company is working its way into the notebook sleeve field as well, with the Japanese—and pending U.S.—launch of its Lady Dots or Night Garden sleeves for MacBook Air (¥4,980/$40). Although they’re not available in the States yet, our sources indicate that we’ll be seeing them sooner rather than later. Read More

$153
Cases

Freitag F81 Mac Sleeve

There are hundreds of sleeve options for the MacBook Pro. Freitag’s F81 Mac Sleeve ($153) for the 13” MacBook Pro is one of them, but the company has taken strides to set it apart from the crowd. The novelty comes from the recycled material used to make the case: used truck tarps, which obviously helps the environment, and also lends itself to some really cool designs. While it’s expensive, you’re definitely getting something unique. Read More

$90
Cases

Case Logic Corvus Laptop Backpack

There’s a lot to like about Case Logic’s Corvus Laptop Backpack ($90). Not only does it have lots of room for your 15” MacBook Pro, iPad, and all the other stuff you carry around throughout the day, but it looks nice too. The nylon bag is both sleek and protective, and wouldn’t look out of place on campus or in the office. Read More

$50
Cases

Thule Gauntlet MacBook Sleeve

We’ve featured a plethora of MacBook sleeves in the past, and there’s generally a trade-off between size and function; you have to choose slim or super-protective. Thule’s Gauntlet MacBook Sleeve ($50) offers a nice compromise. This hard-sided sleeve is going to definitely provide more protection than neoprene, even though it isn’t significantly larger. Read More

$109-$139
Cases

Blackbox Bamboo Cases

Blackbox is yet another example of a company with a cool idea that depended on crowd-sourced funding from Kickstarter, winding up with lots of public support for its Bamboo Cases ($109-$139). Available in custom sizes for all of the machines in Apple’s current notebook lineup, these beautiful, handmade wooden sleeves are sure to attract attention while keeping your computer safe. Read More

€40/~$54
Cases

Case Scenario Space Invaders Sleeve

There are two main factors that set Case Scenario’s Space Invaders Sleeve (€40/~$54) for the 13” and 15” MacBook Pros apart. One is the license from the legendary 80’s video game—the sleeves are available in two different coated-canvas designs: one is white with a black sprite repeated over the surface, while the other has a black background and a rainbow array of space ships lined up diagonally across the sleeve. Read More

$29
Cases

Grove Bamboo Back

If you’re looking to add a bit of flair and protection to your MacBook, you have quite a few options, including stickers and hard plastic cases, both with their own positives and negatives. Grove has come up with a new alternative: Bamboo Back ($29). Available in sizes for everything from the 11” MacBook Air to the 17” MacBook Pro, these handmade wooden plates spruce up your machine and personalize it, too. Read More

$115-$125
Cases

Stash Messenger Bag for MacBook Air

Etsy seller Mariforssell’s Stash line of cases all share the same general aesthetic; they’re modern and fun. We really like the Messenger Bag for MacBook Air ($115-$125), particularly because of the material options that are offered. Available in fabrics such as denim, herringbone wool, and tartan, the Messenger Bags have a unique and cool style that we’d be happy to carry around. Out of all the designs, we really dig some of the plaids. Read More

$265
Cases

Booq Cobra Pack

At this point, it’s possible to carry an entire mobile office in a bag smaller than a traditional backpack—a MacBook Air, iPad 2, camera, and some chargers all take up less space than old Windows laptops. But there are definitely folks who have to—or want to—carry around larger MacBook Pros and all sorts of other toys. If you fall into that category, Booq’s Cobra Pack ($265) may just be the right solution for you. Read More

$350
Cases

Knomo 15" Helena Shoulder Bag with Flap

Most of the MacBook bags we feature are pretty masculine or unisex; Knomo’s 15” Helena Shoulder Bag with Flap ($350) is designed with female customers in mind. It looks a lot more like a purse than a backpack or messenger bag, but still has room for up to a 15” laptop. Made of real leather, the bag is available in brown, black, and nutmeg colors, each with large shoulder straps. Read More

$70
Cases

Tucano Multitasking H15 Bag

We don’t know just how many people carry—or want to carry—a 15” MacBook Pro, 11” MacBook Air, and iPad at the same time. There may be a handful of such people out there, though, and like pretty much every other obscure niche, an accessory maker has stepped in to provide a solution. This time, it’s Tucano with the Multitasking H15 Bag ($70). The 13” model has been discontinued, but you can still pick up this model for the mid-sized MacBook Pro online or at your local Apple Store, and even if you don’t have either a 15” or 11” machine to stuff inside, that just leaves extra space for papers and books. Remember them? Read More

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