Monday, October 10, 2011

Built NY Bag Reviews

Sometimes I’m lucky enough to test products at the exact moment I need them. So when bags from Built NY arrived at the same time as my laptop bag broke, it felt like fate. Better still the bags were good quality and sported some good designs as well and I was given a mixture of sizes and colours to test. So whilst being spoiled for choice, I tried out these ‘big apple style’ bags and put them through their paces.Three cases were provided for review each with a different device in mind so let’s get testing:

Netbook Sleeve 9-10”

I’ve always felt expensive tech should be protected, and I flinch when I see cracked iPad’s and other bits of tech that have been damaged. Which is why I love these netbook sleeves as they feel robust and unlike other cases I’ve seen (which seem to be nothing more than fabric draped around the device), it feels like your iPad or Notebook will be kept protected.

This is thanks to the way the bag slopes inward on the sides and has a springy outer layer. So you slide your Netbook in and the bag expands slightly to fit it in. This then holds it in place so it’s more secure in transit. You can zip the case too, for extra protection. The sides also add another layer of protection (so much so that Built NY refer to them as ‘ribs’) and there’s a padded layer around everything as well.

Oh and a neoprene coating - a material used in wet suits - that keeps everything nice and dry. I even tried placing a heavy object on top of the case and it barely flinched under the weight. All in all it’s a safe and secure way of transporting the tech you care about, and there’s even a nice design flourish thrown in as well.

Netbook + DVD Portfolio (Black)

This particular case is designed for 10” Netbooks but can also fit a portable DVD player. There’s a clipped pocket as well, which is remarkably stretchy allowing you to store wires, notes and other bits and pieces without having to worry about them pressing on the netbook. This black case has a stylish blue / purple inside lining, which aside from being a good design touch, makes it easier to see the contents of your bag (black bags are not easy to find stuff in!).

Unzip the case and you’ll find a carry strap which you can use instead of the handle. I’d have liked the strap to contain a bit of padding for your shoulders, but with a small Netbook there’s not much weight so it’s not a deal breaker. The main feature of this case is that it has thick padding and ultimately for such a small bag, you feel like the contents will be kept safe.

Laptop Sleeve 16”

This is the biggest of the bags I tried, and it echos many of the design features of the Netbook Sleeve. Ribs to protect your laptop, neoprene material and a padded layer all help to provide the same sense of protection as its smaller cousin. As it’s bigger it feels like the most sturdy of the three bags tested, with extra large ribs that really hold the laptop in place no matter how much you swing the bag around.

The hourglass shape is even more evident here, and it’s a sleeve that will get some attention from others. The only downside is that for a case this big I would have liked to see a handle or the option to clip on a strap so it could be used as a bag. It might just be me but whilst carrying iPad’s around in your hand seems ok, carrying 16” laptops around New York in your hand doesn’t feel right.

Other than that it’s another good piece of the range, and certainly ideal if placed in another bag or backpack as a layer of added protection.

Whilst the Netbook sleeve wins all round there are great features on offer across the range. From the portability and spring pouch of the netbook portfolio to the great security features of the laptop sleeve. Best of all, for a fashion brand, it’s amazing to see this attention to detail in keeping your kit safe, and making it look good when you can't even see the tech. For those who like the fashion side of things, there's multiple styles and colours to choose from as well.

Provided by: Built NY

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My Policy

Every product on this site has been received for free, and given to me by the product manufacturer or their associated PR organisation in return for a review.

I have no other personal or business association with these companies, and all reviews are written truthfully and based on my own experience. If I hate a product I will say so (and have done on many occasions!).