We’re starting to see more iPad Air 2 cases — that is, cases specifically designed to fit Apple’s newest full-sized tablet only — with Clarion ($35) and Faraday ($40) recently arriving from Incipio. Clarion is billed as a clear-back education case, presumably because the transparent TPU back makes it easy to label an iPad Air 2. The folio case includes a snap-on closure on the back to keep the lid shut. Faraday, also a folio case, uses a wraparound cover with a magnetic closure. Both cases use a vegan leather front cover.
Clarion is the more interesting case to us, as it combines materials in a way rarely seen with iPad cases. It houses the iPad Air 2 in a soft TPU shell, with full button coverage — it fits more like an iPhone case than an iPad case. And that’s a good thing, especially with such a thin tablet. The snap-on closure on Clarion’s back may be a bit awkward to some, but we like the feeling of security it gives. As one might expect, the folding cover doubles as a stand.
Faraday’s folding cover — which can also be used as a stand, naturally — wraps around partially to the back of the case, giving a secure fit and feel when paired with the strong magnetic closure. Inside is a traditional hard shell to hold the iPad Air 2. No button coverage is offered.
Faraday feels solid, but is also a bit thick. It’s a fine case, with no real knocks against it, but no real standout features, either. It’s recommended for those interested in folio cases. Clarion earns our strong general recommendation — we like the button coverage and soft shell fit, and the price is also quite attractive. If Incipio offered a similar case without the folio cover, we’d probably be even happier with it.
Clarion for iPad Air 2
Faraday for iPad Air 2
Company and Price
Compatible: iPad Air 2