Apple PowerBook Carrying Case

I had a short lived Typepad blog called The Switch. It’s purpose was to talk about all the challenges associated with going from PC to Apple.

I am shutting down my Typepad account, because I do everything in Movable Type and I haven’t updated any of the Typepad blogs I had in about six months.

One of the posts that generated alot of dicussion was around the best bag for your Powerbook. I wanted to capture here for posterity.

P.S. I went with the Tom Bihn Empire Builder and Brain Cell. Worth every penny.


This might seem like a trivial question, but I am going to be lugging the Powerbook around a lot.

I am not looking for a portable office, but rather something that can protect the Powerbook and have room for needed wires, a couple of files, and a notebook.

I was looking through the eBags website. I spent a lot of time reading the comments, but there weren’t a lot specific to Powerbooks.

Remember, I have the 15″ Powerbook G4.

What bags do you like?


ok todd, here’s a list I culled for you from MacWorld, Dec. 2003 of some very cool bags: – they have some nice ones at a good price. – ultra-customizable, very cool

Personally,I had a guy make me a custom sleeve, padded, with plastic inserts for rigidity, and surrounded in cordura. Closes with a big-ass piece of velcro. I throw it into a courier bag or back pack and it’s good to go. This way if I change bags I am not losing the protection – I have a 15″ powerbook, I think it cost me about $40cdn to have made. Hope this helps.

cheers – d.

Posted by: David | March 4, 2004 10:59 AM

All good choices

Not necessarily for Mac but cool fashion:

You will definitely want a wrap or pad that goes around the PB – the screens cost about 90% of cost of original to replace – no way to repair if it cracks.

Posted by: jbelkin | March 4, 2004 11:41 AM would be my choice.

Posted by: Mike Strock | March 4, 2004 12:14 PM

Take a look at Waterfield Designs:

I’ve got one of his cargo bags and it’s really nice, although it’s probably larger than what you’re looking for.

Posted by: Mark | March 4, 2004 02:35 PM

My two favorites are the Laptrap and the Moya by Incase–their site is being reworked, so you may have to use a search engine to look it over. Or try and look at the selection there.

Posted by: Bruce E. Durocher II | March 4, 2004 04:33 PM

For my $$$ Brenthaven.

Posted by: Jeffsters | March 4, 2004 06:57 PM

Zero Halliburton. There’s nothing better. I’ve had the same attache sized Zero for about 6 years now from my Wallstreet to Pismo to TiBook and it’s taken an incredible beating whithout transferring so much as a scratch to the PB within. They can be a bit on the pricey side, but they’re well worth it.

The Z and DZ lines seem to be the current computer offerings.

Posted by: deraven | March 4, 2004 06:59 PM

I use a sleeve (in my case, the extremely silly and stylish Crumpler School Hymn in silver leather) around the Powerbook, after which I toss it into a canvas briefcase that looks nothing like a laptop bag (mine is a Lands End square rigger). There’s plenty of room for all my other stuff as well and cables. I really do recommend choosing a bag that people don’t expect to have a laptop in it, but you must protect the Powerbook as well.

Posted by: Alison Scott | March 5, 2004 07:42 AM

Tom Bihn.
I’ve been through several others.
The Tom Bihn bags have a rigid padded shell that cradles the powerbook inside the bag. It appears to offer much more protection that padding alone. Construction is good, cost not out of line.

Posted by: Ian Lind | March 5, 2004 08:09 AM

Big vote for the incase bags. They’re sold at the Apple stores and online at They use this incredible fabric I’ve never seen anywhere else, and are sleeker than any other designs. I’ve been using one for my iBook for nearly three years, and it still looks and feels great. Good luck!

Posted by: Adam Bezark | March 5, 2004 08:41 AM

Try booq for good designs in the backpack/sling arena. Their sleeve cases are also quite good.

Waterfield makes good sleevecases; I’m not a fan of their designs.

If you want fashion, check out Jack Spade.

If you want pure functionality, go with Timbuk2 and their sleeves. Totally customizable.

For coolness, I’d check out Freitag:

The others seem hokey, and have no style.

-art director-with-bag-fetish

Posted by: reason | March 5, 2004 06:05 PM

just got a bag at willow…the best bag ever..shame they’re closing up shop…clearance prices are very good….

this is highly recommended

Posted by: dixon | March 5, 2004 07:21 PM

I use an InCase sleeve inside a California Pak bag. Total cost was less than $50 (bought the InCase used and CalPak new).

Posted by: e. | March 6, 2004 06:44 AM

I’ve been very pleased with the STM sport laptop backback. Its rugged but attractive, and has protected my 15″ PB through a few hard knocks. The Australian manufacturer is user-friendly and replaced for free a plastic buckle that was cracked by a slammed car door.

See picture:

Posted by: Paul Fox | March 7, 2004 07:45 AM

Trager have some great bags. Their Seattle Messenger started it all. They have a hard sleeve Transpod which fits a 15″ Powerbook and slips inside a satchell. They are well made and will go the distance.

Posted by: Mark Daley | May 10, 2004 01:51 AM

Check out

They have many, many reviews of laptop bags from more cos. than you can imagine. They also sell some of their samples.

Posted by: Chris Edwards | May 12, 2004 02:53 PM

Well, I like this one.

Posted by: anonymous | June 24, 2004 08:43 AM

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