Pad & Quill has been making book-bound iPad and iPhone cases for a couple of years. By book-bound, I mean that the cases made using traditional book-binding materials and techniques. Like DODOcase, the cases have evolved a bit over the years to meet the requirements of new devices; unlike DODOcase, Pad & Quill has created a complete line of cases to protect many of your Apple mobile devices. In this review, I'll take a look at Pad & Quill's Little Black Book for iPhone, the Contega and Octavo iPad cases, and the new Cartella case for the MacBook Air.
Little Black Book for iPhone 4/4S
Let's start with the smallest member of the Pad & Quill family, the Little Black Book case for iPhone 4/4S (US$44.99). A number of small book-type and wallet cases have been announced for the iPhone 4S in the last few months, but of those I've reviewed, I feel that the LBB is the best made product out there.
Like all of the Pad & Quill cases, the device sits nestled in a CNC-machined wood frame with small pads in the corners that make sure that your iPhone isn't going to plop out. Unlike the DODOcase products (which don't include an iPhone case), you don't have to send off for additional pads -- Pad & Quill includes extra material for cutting your own pads.
The case also has the standard Moleskine-like elastic cord for securing the cover when you're on the move, as well as a unique feature -- a red ribbon "bookmark" that is used to help pop out the iPhone when you want it in your hand.
You probably want to use that lovely 8 MP camera on the iPhone 4S, so the Little Black Book includes a port for the camera to look out of. That's not the case with the Twelve South BookBook ($59.99) or Hex Code Wallet ($49.95), where you need to remove the iPhone from the case to take a picture.
Using the Little Black Book as a wallet really means that you're only going to be carrying a minimal amount of stuff, like a driver's license and a credit card or two. These items slide into a little "envelope" in the front inside cover of the LBB.
The Little Black Book is well-built, less expensive than its competitors, and just plain cool. Now let's take a look at its bigger brothers.