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Developer: The Price:
  • $30
The Pros:
  • Excellent outer shell protection
  • Excellent inner case cushioning
  • Looks great

The Cons:
  • Difficult to insert or eject Memory Stick

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InnoPocket Metal Deluxe Case for Clié PEG-T Series Review
By Gordon Jones (aka Gordon from Edinburgh)
4/26/2002


InnoPocket recently released an aluminium hardcase for the Sony T Series. The specs and pictures given at the InnoPocket website make it seem like a great piece of kit for any Clié T owner, but does it live up to expectations?

I was extremely pleased with the appearance of the case. The silver colour matches the colour of my T625C so well that it would be difficult for most people to realize that it was created by a third-party vendor.

The case is made from anodized aircraft aluminium which provides excellent protective strength. Despite being made of metal, the case is very light due to InnoPocket’s use of 100% aluminium.

Little is added to the overall size of the handheld either, as the case fits snugly around the Clié. The ‘feel’ of the metal is much like the brushed metal casing of the Palm Vx series. This provides a body that is easy to grip and unlikely to slip out of even the sweatiest of hands.

There is a thin but firm neoprene lining on the inside between the Clié and the outer casing which provides a protective buffer between your handheld and the outside world. All the edges are rounded which is pleasing to the eye as well as the hand.

The case is held closed by a metal clasp. Metal catches on the case attach to the slots on the back of the Clié, holding it securely in place .

There are cutouts in the case which allow access to the stylus and use of the IR port, Memory Stick slot, Jog Dial, Back button, and HotSync port. One important thing to note is that you can only HotSync with the case on when using a HotSync cable: it will not fit into the Clié cradle.

Although it is straightforward to insert and remove the stylus, it is slightly more difficult when using the Memory Stick. The rigid body and small slot make it tricky to load or eject a card: the Clié is designed in such a way that to remove a card it must first be pushed in, but this is not unique to either the T-Series or even Sony handhelds. For those who don’t have tiny fingers, a simple solution is to press the Memory Stick down with the flat end of the stylus.

When inserting or removing the Clié from the case, care must be taken not to bump the memory card, which, on the T-Series, sticks out slightly above the form of the case. This is not a difficult thing to do though, and I quickly got used to it.

One thing that is at first odd when using the case is that the lid opens to the right, with the Clié attached to the inside of the left cover. Although this truly does seem a little strange, there is a good reason for it. If the hinge was on the right side, like on most Palm handheld cases, it would be impossible to access either the Jog Dial or Back button.

The hinge itself is made entirely of metal, giving it long-lasting strength no matter how many times the case is opened and closed. It is also quite small and only protrudes by a couple of millimetres, increasing the overall form factor only slightly.

There is little to fault in the Metal Deluxe Case for the Clie PEG-T Series. It looks the business and does the business. Anyone who has invested in a Clie T-model handheld would be wise to consider protecting it with a good case, and InnoPocket's website would be well worth a visit.

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Any scratches yet?

dúnadan @ 4/26/2002 4:55:39 PM #
RE: Any scratches yet?
gaardii @ 4/29/2002 11:33:10 AM #
I had a really close look and see some tiny marks. They really are small, and more like scuffs than scratches. Maybe I've had more luck, or more patience inserting/removing my Clie, than others.

Gordon from Edinburgh
*Real hardcases come from Glasgow*

looks cool

palm_pilot_guy @ 4/26/2002 5:45:37 PM #
i've gotta pen that's got brushed aluminum and that feels very smooth so i can imagine how cool that feels!

---
if a student teaches teachers, do they become students?
---
|||||
p'p'g
\_-_/
--V--

Book style opening

Pentagonal @ 4/26/2002 6:43:59 PM #
As a rightie who used to use a book-style case that opened to the left, I have been surprised to find that holding this case open--one or two-handed--is not annoying at all. The only tricky part is orienting myself correctly when I pull the devive out of my pocket and want to open it. It's hard to break old habits, so I tend to open the case upside-down.

RE: Book style opening
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/28/2002 1:08:20 AM #
I'm right-handed, and yet I found out that it's more comfortable using the Palm V slim leather case as a left-handed case than a right-handed one. I'm sure some people will find the same situation with this new Clie hard case.


Palm Case

I.M. Anonymous @ 4/26/2002 6:40:30 PM #
Having had the Palm case for my old M505 and now the innopocket case, I totally think that the Palm case has been designed by somebody who thought about using the PDA on a daily basis...

The Inno case opening to the right prevents you from holding it one hand without half shutting the lid which, in turns, prevents you to use your stylus if your right handed ...

The beauty of the Palm case is the double hinge system which enables to fold the lid behind the PDA and totally hold it one hand... Having walked a show for a week with it, I came to love its ease of use compared to the Innopocket total lack of it.

Now as you have to remove the Clié from the case evrytime you want to sync on the cradle you need to push /pull the clié to get the two metal pins disengaged and repeat use implies scratches on the back of your Clié... The Palm case with its small stylus to hold the PDA is much easier to use...

I know it's not Inno pockets fault but Sony's but it's still makes you feel bad each time you remove the unit....

They are available in the US for $24.99

I.M. Anonymous @ 4/26/2002 7:34:48 PM #
I was just on Gethightech.com and they have them for $24.99.
http://www.gethightech.com/generic.html?pid=127

Just an FYI.

RE: They are available in the US for $24.99
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/1/2002 9:17:27 PM #
ClieSource.com sells them too at $26 + $4 S&H = $30.

GetHightech sells them at $25 + $5 S&H = $30.

Same. :)

Thanks, Mr. Jones

I.M. Anonymous @ 4/26/2002 8:48:37 PM #
I still think that Innopocket should have made this a TOP opening case. That would fit left or right handed users and would allow unrestricted one-hand operation. Nevertheless, on the basis of your review I placed an order for this case today. If I like it, it will replace my Sony leather flip case.
RE: Thanks, Mr. Jones
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/29/2002 5:37:59 AM #
Hi there, despite aluminium being very light, a top-opening case would be top-heavy. Unless, that is, the flip-cover wrapped all the way round, which would result in a case which was uncomfortable to hold. Maybe Innopocket will come out with a modified designed that manages this.
RE: Thanks, Mr. Jones
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/29/2002 5:41:23 AM #
Oops! What I meant to say is that maybe Innopocket will manage to design a new case that overcomes these difficulties!

Reviews by other users

nuopus @ 4/27/2002 12:03:40 PM #
I have read NUMEROUS reviews of this on forums by people who have purchased this case and they all seem to center on 2 facts.

1. The method of clipping your clie is awkward because of the 2 metal clips. They are TIGHT and they recommend bending them out carefully a little as not to break them. Also, the clips being metal and the way they work will eat away at the holes after a while and cause scratches to the back of your unit.

2. You have to remove to hotsync. This itself is not a problem, but coupled with the 1st fact, the case will not work after a while due to the wear on the clip holes eating away at the metal in your clie.

If you are still concidering this case, use electrical tape on the clips and bend them out a littlebit. This will prevent the scratching. Just make sure you bend them evently to keep the alignment.

RE: Reviews by other users
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/6/2002 4:42:42 PM #
Buy Innopocket's USB Hotsync & Charging cable. It enables you to hotsync without removing the Clie from the case, less clutter on your desk, and great for travel if you have a laptop.

Weight?

I.M. Anonymous @ 4/27/2002 8:05:52 PM #
Thanks, Gordon, great article.

Do you happen to know the weight of this case? The T615 is already 20% heavier than the m500, so adding a heavy case would not be good for me.

RE: Weight?
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/28/2002 3:23:00 AM #
Palm Computing Magazine Buyer's Guide shows:

- m500: weight 4 oz
- T615: weight 4.9 oz (this is Sony's lightest unit)

The difference is 19.6%.

If you add a heavy case, carrying the thing in a coat pocket is not an option.

RE: Dont be stupid
abhinay @ 4/28/2002 12:23:02 PM #
You are comparing the T615 to the m500, as in a colour model to a greyscale one. Comparing the t615 and the m515, the 615 is lighter by about 0.1 ounces lighter than the m515. check www.brighthand.com/newsite/palm/views/clievsm515.html

RE: Weight?
gaardii @ 4/29/2002 5:44:12 AM #
The Clie is not heavy, either with the Innopocket case or without! I carry mine in my coat pocket, shirt pocket, trouser back pocket... Honestly, its not heavy at all. There's also very little difference in weight between it and other similar sized pda's.

RE: Weight?
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/29/2002 6:50:35 AM #
No, I was comparing the lightest CLIE with the lightest Palm. Color screens, more pixels, and other stuff like that don't add much utility for me - they just add weight. I just want a good pda for use at the office and one of the main issues is pocketability and convenience.
RE: Weight?
gaardii @ 4/29/2002 8:35:19 AM #
The T615/625 is not the lightest Clie. The T415 is 4.3oz, although there may be a lighter model. The main thing, I think, is that none of the Palm M or Soney T series' models are heavy. Yes, there are models that are 'heavier', but not significantly so. (We could get into an argument about 'longer' and 'thinner' but the differences are so small it would be pointless). I think its much better to express a preference for a particular model based on significant factors, such as tech specs or just good-old-fashioned "I Like The Look Of That"ability.

RE: Weight?
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/30/2002 7:10:23 AM #
I never considered the T415 because of all the bad reports about the screen. Thanks for the tip.

Found it cheaper over here

I.M. Anonymous @ 4/28/2002 12:29:51 AM #
FYI. Found it at this website, http://www.doml.com.sg/product.asp?id=48 @ S$39.95 (translates roughly to US$21). IMO, pretty good deal for people not residing in the US.

RE: Found it cheaper over here
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/28/2002 12:25:18 PM #
I inquired from this site.It costs $40.00 for federal express delivery.
RE: Found it cheaper over here
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/28/2002 9:48:27 PM #
I've checked out the site too. At first I thought that their prices are in USD but on second looks, it seems that they are a Singapore-based company and the prices listed are in Singapore Dollars instead. Prices are kind of okay if you're to convert them from Singapore Dollars to USD. It's kind of misleading on the prices since they did not specify the currency.

It's Junk

I.M. Anonymous @ 4/28/2002 3:53:57 AM #
I had the case. I returned the case. It's nice to look at but it scratches and doesn't clip in very well.

Broke...

I.M. Anonymous @ 4/29/2002 9:16:05 AM #

I had a case, and the back bottom clip did not line up correctly. Everytime I put the T615C down, it bent the pins, so I would have to bend them back, evenutally after 1 day of taking it out for hotsyncs the pins broke off. I am not happy and it would seem to be my fault, but I don't like the case.

If you like this case, you'll love SmarterCase

I.M. Anonymous @ 4/29/2002 10:06:54 AM #
Seriously, the 146 series SmarterCase, while a bit bigger and heavier, is much better looking, protective and less expensive!

www.smartercase.com

RE: If you like this case, you'll love SmarterCase
gaardii @ 4/29/2002 11:38:07 AM #
I had a look at the site and could find cases for Palm and Handera models, but none for Sony. Maybe they are lurking behind a deceptive link, or were you recommending a generic pda case? BTW your subject "If you like this case, you'll love SmarterCase" sounds like you work for the company. Do you? :-)

RE: If you like this case, you'll love SmarterCase
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/29/2002 11:58:26 AM #
Sony fit in the 146 cases too!
RE: If you like this case, you'll love SmarterCase
gaardii @ 4/29/2002 3:04:19 PM #
Ah! Thanks.

Drop test

I.M. Anonymous @ 5/6/2002 4:45:37 PM #
I had a Palm Vx with a Rhinoskin aluminum hard case. Whenever I would drop the unit the case would open. I don't have this problem with the Clie/Innopocket case. However, the stylus comes flying out each time instead.
I've noticed a few scratches on the case, but that's like people complaining about getting scratches on the bumper of their car in an accident.
RE: Drop test
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/7/2002 8:20:59 AM #
Word!
Does it fit the T760?
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/7/2002 11:09:22 PM #
Does it fit the T760?
RE: Drop test
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/14/2002 2:50:22 AM #
No, because it is the N760C, which is not a T series.

How about the 665C?

I.M. Anonymous @ 7/13/2002 1:22:04 AM #
Would this case fit the T665C? It seems as if the jog dial and IR are in different places?
RE: How about the 665C?
Lfh @ 7/27/2002 11:03:44 AM #
I have one for my 665, the hold slide and the back button get covered but the jog dial and the ear buds socket are accessible

Do not meddle in the affairs of Dragons, for you are crunchy and good with Ketchup

Ken

I.M. Anonymous @ 7/17/2002 9:24:32 PM #
I purchased the case. It is well crafted. Nice snug fit. My only complaint is that the cover does not flip around the back, which makes it a little uncomfortable to hold.
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