Wow, I cannot rate this product enough. This is a slimline carry case for the Apple MacBook Pro. It is not a full on, carry-it-all bag, nor is it one of those tight fitting sleeves. Instead it offers just the right amount of capacity to carry your laptop with a few extra bits to that important meeting, to work, or when popping to a friends house.
The case does not actually measure much more than the 15-inch MacBook Pro itself. Rough size is about 40cm(W) by 31cm)H) by 6cm(D). On the front of the case is a smaller zipped pocket which is roughly 22cm wide by 16cm high. On the back you get a pocket that has a single velcro fastening, this one is big enough for an A4 pad of about 40 sheets. The top has a nice padded handle, which goes flat into the top of the case when not in use. There is also two metal buckles to the top sides of the case for use with the supplied shoulder strap. The strap is padded nicely and has quick release metal attachments.
The main inner of the case zips completely open around three sides. You then place your laptop into it face down. This means that your laptop lid is against the part of the case with the most padding. The flap has some rigid board in it and four rubber pads (one in each corner) that help to protect your lappie from bumps. Around the four edges are nice padded strips, and just outside these strips is yet more rigid inserts. It is a very lightweight case, but really does offer some decent protection. The styling is nice too, in black and silver, with some silver stitch detailing too.
I was using this with a new (late 2008 unibody) 15-inch MacBook Pro, which was a nice snug fit. I was very happy with just what a perfect size the padding was. The older MacBook Pro was also tested and fitted just the same.
It is readily available from various places for under £30 which I think represents great value for money. It means you can travel very easily with all that you need (apart from your power adapter), but with 4/5 hours of battery life, that shouldn't pose a problem.
If you look back at my preferences in bags, perhaps two or three years ago, I would never have considered a Brenthaven offering. I won't name and shame here my bag of choice, but I must hasten to say that it was sold off the back as being designed for the Mac Crowd and a lot more expensive to boot.
The ProLite II from Brenthaven is a big surprise to me on lots of counts. It looks very understated, so does not scream "Laptop" to passers-by. It fits laptops up to 15.4-inch widescreen, so was perfect for my MacBook Pro. The main compartment does not have a removable sleeve, instead it padded strips to the bottom and sides. I was happy to slip my MBPro in there without any other case, but if you are the type that wants to stops any type of scratch this is not a problem. With my 15.4-incher inside a slip case, or a corduroy padded case, or second skin, it still fitted nicely inside the ProLite II.
The good things don't end there... on the front of the bag there are three zipped compartments. One is lined in a nice soft material and would accommodate the likes of an iPod, slimline compact camera etc. The second zip down opens right up to reveal some pen pockets, mesh pockets, credit card holder and key holder. The final full length zip toward the bottom of the bag is ideal to put some cables in and perhaps a charger or two.
Round the back there is a further two compartments, large enough to fit loads of paperwork, a mousepad, and yet more mesh pockets. There is also a strap across the back, this allows you to attach the ProLite II to wheeled baggage, freeing up your hands.
Carrying this around is also pretty comfortable. The obligatory shoulder strap is nicely padded, as are the two shorter carrying handles on the top of the bag. Where the ProLite II really scores for me is in three main areas. Firstly, the build quality is really nice. Everything feels as though it will last for a very long time. Secondly, the looks... yes I know a lot of you will say it is just a plain old black bag, but I think in connection to the build quality and the stitching, it just looks really nice. The final winning point is the price... and again, I can hear you say that you could buy cheaper, but I would argue that for just under £70 you get a really useful, well designed bag that is guaranteed for life. Well done Brenthaven, you get my vote!
Keeping your laptop fresh looking and protected from everyday knocks is very important. An unobtrusive carrying device is also essential, so not to draw attention to your valued possession. The Eclipse Sleeve II from Brenthaven is available as reviewed for the 15.4-inch MacBook Pro, but also available in a variety of other colours, and for the 13.3-inch MacBook and the top end 17-inch MacBook Pro. Check out what we thought in the video below.
When you have a laptop of any brand, it is important to be able to take it with you whilst keeping it safe from knocks and scrapes. The MetroLite from Brenthaven offers a stylish choice, with a very nice quality feel to it. Check out the video review to see just what we thought of it.