REVIEWED: WaterField Designs Outback MacBook Sleeve

Add rugged, outdoorsy canvas protection to Apple’s sleekest machined aluminium laptop

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Most travellers are happy to prance around clutching the latest expensive gadgets, but the wise mover disguises, covers-up and protects while on the go. Adding a vintage look to an otherwise impossibly modern-looking laptop, the Outback sleeve is all about the cover-up.

All sizes of MacBook

Constructed by San Francisco-based Waterfield Designs – a company with a bag for every gadget you can think of – the slim Outback is available for all sizes of MacBook, from the 11-inch MacBook Air to the new 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina laptops.

Tan-waxed canvas

It’s totally customisable. It uses soft neoprene on the inside to protect the MacBook Pro. On the outside, there’s a unique look thanks to tan-waxed canvas, with the end result a worn, vintage that’s a welcome counter-point to the cold, machined aluminium look of Apple gear. Would you go camping with it? Probably not, but the use of a magnetic enclosure does add some security as well as retro good looks. The leather at the bottom can be specc’ed to either ‘grizzly’ or ‘chocolate’ colour, while that handy magnetic enclosure can be swapped-out for a flap that covers the top.

Vintage look

Although it comes as it is, there is an optional strap available to quickly transform it into a shoulder bag, which could be as useful around the office as when travelling through airports (or you can just spec some D-rings, then add your own strap). It’s even available in either landscape or portrait orientation; we tested the former, though the latter will suit those wanting to put the Outback in a backpack. Either way, this tough, vintage-look protection is hard to resist and great value, too.

Price as reviewed: from US$59

Buy the WaterField Designs Outback MacBook Sleeve