The Proporta Aluminium Case for Apple iPod Photo is a case for those iPod owners who are bent on keeping their iPod in top cosmetic condition, and protected from scratches, scuffs and general knocks.
Very few parts of the iPod are left exposed, with the screen being covered with clear plastic, and the aircraft grade aluminium case protecting 90% of the rest. The first thing I noticed when I opened the case was the almost total coverage with Neoprene used to line the inside of the case. At no time has my iPod had to come in contact with the aluminium itself (so no scuff marks). My 60GB fitted perfectly snugly, yet is easy enough to remove thanks to the curved cutout at the rear of the unit. The Clickwheel is left fully exposed and usable without having to open the case.
A fairly sturdy looking hinge resides at the bottom of the case, whilst at the top is a simple clasp to grab a small rail to hold it shut. This does not feel like it would come open easily (and your iPod wouldn’t instantly fall our even if it did thanks to the snug fit of the case).
The cutout for the hold button was only just usable, as it makes the hold button recessed, and mildly difficult to operate (although the chances of your iPods clickwheel being bumped is virtually nil whilst in this case. The cutout for headphones was better, but I did not have a remote control to test, and I am unsure that there is enough room for these units. The bulk of the case combined with the placement of the clasp makes the unit unsuitable for use with Griffins iTrip or XtremeMacs Airplay, but you would be able to use a Belkin Tunecast or similar cabled unit.
The belt clip is fully optional with an adapter to be screwed into the back of the unit, and the whole thing clipped on and off the belt unit at will in the same style as a mobile phone rotating belt clip. It seemed functional and solid, although there was a noticeable gap between the back of the case and my waist when using it, leaving it a little more exposed to catching on things than I would be comfortable with.
There was also a handstrap included that had a narrow gauge chain (think necklace) covered in clear plastic. This looked quite low quality, and if I needed a strap I would likely seek an alternative one.
Overall this case seemed to be of high build quality and good materials. Perfect if you really want to throw your iPod into a bag, on the desk, or in the car without babying it.
iPod still very functional whilst in the case
Easy to insert / remove
Not compatible with Dock/iTrip/Airplay/Airclick/Tunedok etc