Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/11/29/group_tests_ipad_cases_skins/

Monster iPad Case Test: Skins and Hard Cases

Silicone specials

By Tony Smith

Posted in Hardware, 29th November 2010 07:02 GMT

Product Round-up Rubber skins and plastic hard cases may not provide your iPad with the all-encompasing protection of a folio or slipcase, but they'll certainly take the knocks - and bring some colour and individuality to your tablet.

Belkin Grip Vue Case

Belkin's skin sits somewhere between the hard clip-on-the-back cases and the floppy ones. Like the latter, it wraps around the tablet's sides and onto the front, but is rigid. In place, it offers a good fit with buttons and gaps well aligned with the iPad's own, though its stiffness makes it a git to get on - bear this in mind if you plan to swap cases regularly. Otherwise, a nice product.

Belkin Grip Vue Sleeve

Reg Rating 75%
Price RRP: £15 Online: £11
More Info Belkin

Cygnett SecondSkin

Classic silicone skin, but one which doesn't cover the iPad's power and volume buttons. Two bone-shaped pads on the back lift the iPad up off the deck when it's laid flat, but give it a slightly odd feel when you're holding it. The thin lips that folds over the edge of the iPad's front are a little too easy to dislodge.

Cygnett SecondSkin

Reg Rating 70%
Price RRP: £20 Online: £15
More Info Cygnett

Exspect Toughskin

Like the Belkin Grip Vue, this colourful semi-rigid skin holds the iPad snuggly, once you've managed to get the darn thing on. Available in burgundy and blue, it has a smart glossy finish.

Exspect Toughskin

Reg Rating 75%
Price RRP: £20 Online: £5
More Info Exspect

Griffin AirStrap

RH Recommended Medal

The oddly named AirStrap encases the iPad in a thick matte plastic casing with textured grips at the rear top and sides. There is a strap on the back: a tight elastic strip into which you slide your hand, fingers outstretched, and allow you to wave your arm around without the tablet slipping off. Yes, it works, but how many folk will need this facility? Not to many, I think, but the grippy case will please gamers.

Griffin AirStrap

Reg Rating 75%
Price RRP: £35 Online: TBC
More Info Griffin

Griffin FlexGrip

Griffin's rubbery silicone case certainly adds both colour and a little extra grip to the iPad, and it's easy to get the tablet in and out. It does pick up dust and grit from your bag. There's no screen protection.

Griffiin FlexGrip

Reg Rating 70%
Price RRP: £25 Online: £15
More Info Griffin

Incipio Feather

Not as floppy as your average iPad skin, the feather fits tightly onto your tablet but no so much so that it's hard to remove, either. Semi-translucent and available in five colours, it's as much about brightening up your gadget as protecting it. The Feather also improves the iPad's grip no end, and comes with a separate screen cover sheet.

Incipio Feather

Reg Rating 70%
Price RRP: £40 Online: £20
More Info Incipio

Incipio NGP

NGP stands for Next Generation Polymer but this semi-rigid matte case has an odd feel that's a league away from the rubber texture of most other skins. It also comes with a screen protector sheet and air-bubble beating cloth. But the moulding could be neater, it's pricey and thin lip that folds over the edge of the iPad's front is a little too easy to dislodge.

Incipio NGP

Reg Rating 70%
Price RRP: £45 Online: £25
More Info Incipio

Incipio Silicrylic

The silicrylic comprises a reasonably stiff silicone skin and a hard acrylic - hence the name - panel that clips on the back. Sure it makes for a cute two-tone case, but I'm not sure it really provides any extra protection. I was disappointed too by the poor alignment of gaps in the skin and the iPad's ports and buttons. Comes with a separate screen cover sheet.

Incipio Silicrylic

Reg Rating 65%
Price RRP: £60 Online: £37
More Info Incipio

Incipio 1337

Designed, apparently, for gamers, the 1337 is thicker than your average silicone skin, so it fits the iPad better. On the back, at the corners, are four inch-thick L-shaped grips to better help you hold onto your iPad while flinging angry birds or steering round the racetrack. It didn't help my N.O.V.A performance any, and it's not a case you'd want if you take your iPad out and about, but there's no doubt it makes for a good grip. Comes with a separate screen cover sheet.

Incipio 1337

Reg Rating 70%
Price RRP: £45 Online: £23
More Info Incipio

Proporta Mizu Shell

Standard semi-rigid translucent skin, the Mizu shell comes in a range of colours. It fits well too, but then so do all the others of its ilk I've reviewed here.

Proporta Mizu Shell

Reg Rating 70%
Price RRP: £25 Online: £7
More Info Proporta

Proporta Profile Hard Shell

Proporta's hard shell offering is a little different from the others here. First, it has a soft leather-like texture applied to the outer face, while the inside is covered in faux velvet. Secondly, it has a gap for a second dock port on the iPad's side - so it's ready for the iPad 2, in other words. Available in black, red or brown colours.

Proporta Profile Hard Shell

Reg Rating 70%
Price RRP: £27 Online: £26
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Scosche GlosSee

Constructed like a silicone skin, the GlosSee is actually coloured, see-through glossy plastic. It looks good and lets the Apple logo shine through - good for fanboys, them. It also takes a lot more pressure to dislodge the lip of the case from the iPad, though that makes it tougher to get the tablet in and out than is the case with silicon skins. The covered volume buttons are hard to push, too. Comes with a separate screen cover sheet.

Scosche GlosSee

Reg Rating 75%
Price RRP: £30 Online: £23
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Scosche SnapShield

RH Editor's Choice

I'm not sure what protection the hard, clear plastic SnapShield really provides, but it's a great way to colour your iPad's back panel. It comes with a separate screen cover sheet, which is nice and - ho, ho - has a space on the left side for a second dock connector. iPad 2 ready? Sure is!

Scosche SnapShield

Reg Rating 80%
Price RRP: £25 Online: £20
More Info Scosche