If you travel abroad with your MacBook Pro and don’t want to scuff up the factory aluminum finish as you go through every day wear and tear, you should consider adding some protection to it.
Although the slimness of modern MacBook Pro models is one of the nicest features of the notebook, Incipio’s Feather cases are beautifully crafted to not only give it a splash of color, but also to protect all of its most sensitive edges from friction and shock that might occur when a notebook is stored in a laptop bag or backpack.
In this review, we’ll be taking you through the case’s features and show you how it looks on a 15-inch MacBook Pro with retina display from every angle.
A case for your Mac – just as important as a case for your iPhone?
Throughout the years, especially while traveling with it in my backpack, scuffs and scratches accumulated in the factory aluminum finish of my MacBook Pros because the computer would rub up against other contents in my backpack.
This time I turned to my friends at Incipio to make sure my latest computer, a 2015 15-inch MacBook Pro with retina display, wouldn’t suffer the same fate as my many other models in the past. The case I selected was the Incipio Feather, which can be bad on Amazon for just under $50. It’s a light-weight two-piece snap-on case that adds hardly any bulk to my computer at all, and even gives it a cool new look.
Although I’m not likely to drop my MacBook Pro all over the place like I do with my iPhone all the time, it is constantly vulnerable to scratches and scuffs from objects surrounding it. Whether it’s someone walking past my desk, or something in the same bag as my computer when I’m out and about, friction is a quandary of physics that may never be defeated.
Fortunately, you can still place a layer of protection between the aluminum and whatever may cause physical harm to the MacBook Pro’s finish. And as you’re about to see, a case is a practical solution for MacBook Pro owners who want to keep their machines from suffering similar fates as mine have over the years.
Incipio Feather for 15-inch MacBook Pro with retina display
The Incipio Feather is, like I said, a very lightweight and thin case. It’s not made for drop protection, but it is made to help keep the factory finish looking factory-like for years to come. It’s made out of a see-through plextonium polycarbonate, which is a high-density plastic that resists impact from blunt objects (within reason, of course).
One of the things I like about it so much is how the Apple Logo shines through the back of the case. Since the case is colored blue in this instance, it gives the Apple logo a blue shine. Depending on the color of case you pick, the color of the Apple logo’s glow will reflect upon that color.
The Incipio logo is proudly etched into the top-left corner of the case, and you can also see below how precise the mating lines are between the top piece and the bottom piece of the case when the MacBook Pro is closed:
As far as accessibility of the computer’s ports are concerned, Incipio has made a precise cut-out on either side of the Feather case to ensure there won’t be any problems accessing your USB, MagSafe, HDMI, SD, 3.5mm headphone, or Thunderbolt ports.
Because of the nice wide openings, I can’t imagine that any third-party accessories are going to have any trouble at all being used with the computer. Every single one of mine seem to work properly with this case setup, and that includes my Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 speaker system, HDMI television output, various USB accessories, and my camera’s SD card.
Friction tabs are used all around the case to keep a firm grip on your MacBook Pro. Some of the most visible that you’ll see from day to day include the ones in the lid lift handle and the one right above the iSight camera, but you’ll also see tabs all around the fan opening in the back, and around the edges of the display.
In terms of the MacBook Pro’s hinge, you might expect such a close-hugging case to cause issues and prevent the computer from opening or closing properly. Fortunately, this isn’t the case and Incipio’s case designers have carefully measured to precise tolerances so nothing binds. You’ll also notice another friction tab in the corner, which is another of the spots where the case grips to your computer.
On the bottom of the case, Incipio includes cut-outs for the speaker grilles so that your MacBook Pro’s sound doesn’t suffer a bit. With later MacBook Pro models, this is a big deal because Apple has really stepped it up with sound quality and no one wants to miss out on any of that.
You’ll also notice that there are rubber boots on the bottom of the case, which simulate the similar rubber boots that already come on your MacBook Pro from the factory. These boots prevent scraping noises when using your computer on a table, and also help it grip the surface better to prevent sliding.
My opinion on the Incipio Feather MacBook Pro case so far
I particularly like the case’s small form factor. Weighing in at just 0.8 pounds, and measuring in at just 0.07 inches thick, 14.25 inches long, and 9.6 inches wide, the Incipio Feather slips into my MacBook Pro’s carrying case with no problem. This is a big thing for me, because I don’t just carry my naked MacBook Pro in my backpack anymore after having learned a lesson the first time, but instead, I keep it inside of a case to further protect it from shock or scuffing.
I’m not particularly a fan of having a friction tab right in the middle of the lid lift because I feel like it gets in the way. It doesn’t really prevent you from opening your MacBook Pro at all, but it just feels like there’s less room for your fingers to get in there and do their job.
Another thing worth noting is the small tabs right before the hinge point are prone to breaking on these cases and other cases like this one. Although mine haven’t broken yet, many other reviews on the case suggest they can break within weeks or months of use from small impacts or simply stress over time.
Yet another thing I can list as a con to this case is that unlike many competing MacBook Pro cases, the Incipio Feather lacks any kind of rubber padding between the aluminum finish and the plastic case, which means any movement between the two has the potential to cause scuffing or scratches in your MacBook Pro’s finish in itself.
Overall, the everyday traveler that likes a minimalist case for their MacBook Pro can’t really go wrong with the Incipio Feather. I give it a 3.5/5 rating. Below, we’ll outline the pros and cons for you:
- See-through design lets you see the Apple logo as it illuminates
- High-density plastic resists external scuffs and scratches
- Minimalist design hardly adds any thickness or weigh to the MacBook Pro
- Small dimensions make the case compatible with many carrying bags
- Tons of colors to choose from
- Rear plastic friction tabs are prone to breaking off over time
- Lack of friction protection between case and aluminum itself may cause scuffing over time
- Expensive for a snap-on case – it’s a $50 case
- Difficult to remove once put on the computer
The Incipio Feather for the MacBook Pro provides good protection for minimalists, and it’s available for MacBooks of all models and sizes on Amazon. Although it’s not without its shortcomings, finding a good case for the MacBook Pro is a difficult task in itself, and for what it is, the Incipio Feather is a decent option.
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If you have a MacBook, of any model, do you use a case? Share in the comments below.