Pros: Unique metal-reinforced leather case for the iPod mini with belt-friendly flip-open design, strong integrated belt clip, nice looking and feeling leather. Easy to open and put your mini in; good concept on protectiveness. Includes an iPod mini screen protector.
Cons: Design concept that works well to protect sides of full-sized iPods leaves exposed patches on the mini’s sides, particularly its bottom corners, also leaves top of iPod mini exposed. Belt clip can’t be detached.
Since the early 2004 launch of the iPod mini, we’ve reviewed over 50 different cases tailored to the unique size and shape of Apple’s mid-sized iPod. Today, we begin a series of quick looks at eight additional cases that range in materials from rubbery plastic to leather and felt, and in place of origin from Sweden to Germany, Japan, China, and the United States.
Truly unique iPod mini case designs are few and far between. Targus has come up with two of them, which we look at in separate reviews. The first is the Flip Case ($29.99), a single piece of black leather that has been reinforced with metal and internally padded with soft, velvety fabric to prevent scratches to your iPod mini. An iPod mini-sized screen protector is also included as an extra bonus.
You insert your mini into the side of the Flip Case with four total U-shaped tongs that grab and hold the mini in place. Interestingly, this is the case’s “front” side – the “back” has two more tongs that fit in-between the front’s four, closing the front and back together while protecting most of the iPod mini’s sides. The back side includes a sturdy, leather covered metal belt clip that cannot be removed. Both sides are joined by a soft leather bottom part that has a reasonably-sized hole for the Dock Connector.
Targus designed the case so that the belt clip half would remain on your belt, while the other half would open up upside down, exposing the iPod’s screen and Click Wheel for easy access. The tongs system works well to accomplish that goal, not scratching or scuffing the iPod mini’s body in any way, but also gripping it quite well when closed.
However, the Flip Case leaves more of an iPod mini exposed than its full-sized iPod version does, with holes for its bottom corners most noticeably different. The top of the mini is entirely exposed, and you’ll likely see thin slits in the case’s sides between the tongs, as well. The design works better on full-sized iPods, but isn’t bad for the mini.
Because the case’s large, nicely made belt clip is non-detachable, and because the partially open side and top design is so tailored to belt use, this isn’t a case that you’ll want to toss in a bag. A few little tweaks to this design could have earned the Flip Case a significantly higher rating, but as it is, it’s good – shy of great. If you’re looking for a belt-worthy accessory that looks nice, Targus’s Flip Case for iPod mini is worth checking out.
Company and Price
Model: Flip Case for iPod mini
Compatible: iPod mini