Paul has a passion for new technology and taught digital media studies in the UK for a number of years. He now lives in Florida, USA.
Considerations When Picking a MacBook Pro Case
Having worked for years with Macs, I bring a considerable amount of experience when it comes to selecting the best cases.
While much of the decision-making process comes down to personal choice—for example, aesthetic details like color and style—a surprising amount depends on design and functionality of the cover.
In my experience, a top-quality case generally needs to fulfill a number of characteristics and requirements if it is going to satisfy the majority of MacBook users. It should be:
- Tough enough to eliminate, or at least minimize potential damage to your laptop from scratches, bumps, dirt, dust, stains, and fingerprints.
- Functional and easy to use, with additional features, such as extra storage pockets, if required.
- Comply with your budgetary requirements and offer excellent value for money.
- Hard wearing and durable: You want it to last.
- A snug fit for your machine, preferably designed specifically for the model that you are using.
- Attractive and appealing in appearance, suited to your tastes and style, as well as being fashioned in a way that feels good to the touch.
Note: I strongly recommend that you check the model number of your computer before you order a new case. It can be found on the bottom of the MacBook. Examples of model numbers are the A1706 and the A1708. This should ensure that the case fits properly and save you time and trouble.
The 4 Best 13-Inch MacBook Pro Cases
Here are my suggestions:
- The KEC Plastic Hard Shell: great designs and durable
- The ProCase Hard Shell: affordable and easy
- The Inateck Sleeve: stylish and versatile
- The MOSISO Hard Cover: slim, lightweight, and attractive
I give my experiences and reasoning for my selections in more detail below.
The KEC Plastic Hard Shell: Well-Designed and Durable
I bought one of these cases for my daughter, after letting her pick the design she desired. Installing the KEC plastic case gave me a great insight into this hard shell. She's had the case for nearly a year now and it's holding up excellently.
Here are my pros and cons for the KEC:
- Snug fit for my daughter's machine (the newest 13 inch MacBook Pro).
- Wide range of designs to choose from.
- Easy to install. To remove it you use the tabs on the front shell, pulling the middle one first, followed by the side ones. It comes off easily.
- The shell is scratch and fingerprint resistant, as advertised.
- Made from sturdy but semi-flexible plastic that feels durable.
- Doesn't add bulk to the Mac.
- Not the cheapest case. I found it worth the money, but others might not.
- This case would provide almost no protection if the Mac is dropped.
The ProCase Hard Shell: Affordable and Easy
The ProCase Hard Shell is the other hard case that I would recommend. I use one of these on my own Mac. It does what it says: protects, looks good, and offers great value for money.
My ProCase Pros
- It's very easy to install, I followed the instructions and it took me about a minute.
- It comes with a keyboard cover, which is good if you eat and drink while working on your Mac like me.
- Very affordable.
- It keeps my (expensive) machine free from scratches.
- I like the rubbery feel, but might not be to everyone's taste.
The Inateck Sleeve: Stylish and Versatile
I use my Inateck sleeve whenever I need to take my Mac traveling. It looks professional for work meetings, and it's very functional too.
My Inateck Pros
- Fits snugly.
- The workmanship is excellent, in my opinion, and the sleeve looks appropriate for business as well as pleasure.
- The soft flannel lining feels good and provides some security when carrying the case.
- I like the extra small felt bag for carrying the mouse
- The Inateck is versatile, can use it as a carrying case, or a sleeve that I can slip inside another bag.
- The Velcro strips used for closure are showing some signs of wear after almost a year.
The MOSISO Hard Cover: Slim, Lightweight, and Attractive
My wife uses a MOSISO Hard Cover. It's a little more expensive than some of the other options but has worked out well for her. It consists of two shells that clip over the Mac to provide protection from scratches, fingerprints, and minor knocks.
- I was the one who installed the case for my wife and I can confirm that it clips on and off easily. The MOSISO fits snugly and doesn't block any of the ports.
- There are a wide variety of designs and colors to choose from. My wife went for the rose-red version, but there are many other options.
- It's slim and lightweight.
- Although not the cheapest option, it offers excellent value for money.
- The bottom piece could do with a few more grab points at the back. It's not a major issue, but the case has worked its way loose more than once.
The 2 Main Types of Laptop Cover
Cases come in many styles and designs, and can be made from different materials. The two most common styles are the hard shell and the sleeve.
- Hard shells clip around the Apple laptop to form a protective layer and provide an excellent guard from damage to the notebook. They can also be great for the customizing the color of your Apple. They generally offer more protection that sleeves, especially when it comes to bumps.
- Sleeves are normally opened and closed with a zip and so are great for providing quick access to the notebook. Some also have additional features, such as extra pockets for storing small accessories. Sleeves are constructed from different materials, each with their own specific advantages and disadvantages.
The Different Case Construction Materials
- Hard cases are typically made from a tough polycarbonate with a rubberized coating. These covers usually snap on and off, so can be added and removed as required. They provide an excellent combination of protectiveness, appearance, and feel.
- Sleeves are usually made from materials such as neoprene, felt, and leather, They fasten with a variety of methods including zippers, and buttons. Sleeves provide a stylish way to protect your laptop. Some sleeve construction materials have specific advantages: for instance neoprene is water resistant, as well as being durable and protective against scratches.
- In addition, there are screen protectors, usually made from plastic, which may or may not come with your case. The best screen protectors are designed to minimize glare, as well as protect the screen from fingerprints, grease, dirt, and dust.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
© 2012 Paul Goodman
New Guestbook Comments
WriterJanis2 on February 17, 2014:
I like how sleek it is.
rawwwwwws lm on January 16, 2013:
Thanks for sharing, enjoyed my time passing by!
mistaben on December 06, 2012:
I like iPearl mCover =)
clerk1993 on August 14, 2012: