The folks at Speck keep rolling out new cases for the Apple iPad. This time around they sent a review unit of a case that uses their increasingly familiar pixel design and brings it to a skin that wraps the iPad in a thick protective layer shielding everything but the screen. Let’s take a look.
The tactile pixel texture and perfect amount of “squish” is what makes this rubberized iPad case so grippy in-hand and famously protective. Works great with our ShieldView screen films.
When I first opened the case and took a look at it I talked to myself “Wow, now that’s green!” (And I am colorblind!) Yes, there is no question that this case is a bright green but it is also available in indigo and black.
As noted in the introduction, the case brings Speck’s familiar pixel design to an iPad skin.
In the box you’ll find the skin and… no, that’s all that is in the box. Speck doesn’t include a screen protector but they are available from the company for an additional cost.
In order to get the iPad into the PixelSkin you simply insert the top or bottom of it and then slowly work the skin around the iPad until it is fully enclosed. I had no difficulty getting it on and it didn’t do anything to disrupt the Clear-Coat that I have on the iPad’s screen.
When in the PixelSkin the iPad’s back, sides, top and bottom are fully protected. In addition, the case protects the bezel of the iPad with “non-pixelated” material. As I’ll discuss in a moment, this is a good design choice.
While in the PixelSkin the dock connector is accessible. No, you won’t be able to use the Apple dock or dock-keyboard but you can sync and charge your iPad without removing it from the case.
The case also leaves accessible the rotation lock…
…as well as the microphone and the headphone jack. It does cover over the home button and the volume rocker but it gives a clear indication of where those are and they are fully usable within the skin.
The material feels quite comfortable in the hand. I liked the feel a lot when I first got it and I asked Elana for her impression. She concurred — the PixelSkin is nice to hold and looks and feels as if it’s made from high-quality material. Obviously I’ve come to expect that from Speck and it is the case here.
The proof of any case is in the actual usage however and on that note I can give the PixelSkin high marks as well. I just spent the last few hours sitting out on our dock doing some reading with the iPad in this skin. I appreciated the fact that the case gives me a good grip on the iPad when I’m carrying it. Just as importantly, it felt incredibly comfortable to hold while reading.The design let me keep a good grip on the iPad. The way the case is built, when you grip the iPad with one hand your thumb lands on the smooth material around the bezel while the fingers gripped the pixel material on the back. These work together to create a really comfortable way to hold the iPad. In addition, the material has just enough give to it that I didn’t feel any fatigue after holding the iPad for an extended period of time.
If I have any issue with this particular case it’s the fact that with the iPad inside there is a slight gap between the material and the iPad where the home button is and at the very top of the case while it is completely flush on the sides. This isn’t something that one would notice unless they were looking for it but it is there and it’s worth noting.
Other than that small complaint I really like this case and will enjoy using it when I’m using the iPad for reading over extended periods of time.
The PixelSkin for iPad is available directly from Specks distributor Amazon in your choice of Black, Indigo and Green.
MSRP: $39.95, discounted now for $34!
What I Like: Protects the back, sides, top and bottom quite well; makes it super easy to keep a grip on the iPad; has enough “give” to make it comfortable to hold; can charge and sync the iPad while inside
What Needs Improvement: A bit of a a gap at some points around the bezel
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