micro2 Shield Set for iPod Nano
zCover’s micro2 Shield Set for iPod nano (2G) is a mouthful of a name for a bite-sized iPod cover. Available in three colours (red, blue and black), these silicone cases are ruggedised around the edges, making for a firmer grip of the music player, and offering a little extra impact resistance in case you drop the iPod. These rugged edges are attractive to look at, consisting of three rectangular boxes down each of the iPod’s left and right sides. Without the cover, a nano is approximately 7mm thick; with its zCover on this extends to 13mm at the thickest point. While you do generate extra bulk, the diminutive nature of the nano means it will still fit comfortably in your pocket, with or without its coat on.
When it comes to port protection, the micro2 Shield Set does an acceptable job. In normal use, the silicone cover blocks the iPod’s dock connector. A slice of slicone plugs into the port and is connected to the case so it can be removed when required, but not lost. zCover has added a slot at the back of the case, which lets users release the lower part of the iPod from the cover when they want to access the dock. The headphone port and lock button remain completely accessible, though not protected. In order to protect the scroll wheel, zCover has designed its case to carry a thin circular membrane, which protects the wheel, but is thin enough that the controls are still fully usable.
Face protection isn’t built into the cover. It ships with a small, thin and hard transparent plastic rectangle. This is bevelled around its edges in order that it can be slotted in between the case and the iPod’s own screen. In practice, slotting the screen protector into place is a little fiddly, but once it’s in it’s fairly secure and provides a level of protection for the iPod’s tiny screen. We have some concern that the nature of the design means the plastic screen protector is likely to shift around in its seat when you use the iPod, which could pose some risk of the protector scratching the screen. The protector also attract fingermarks.
The case ships with a plastic belt clip, capable of revolving 180˚. You remove the clip by moving a small plastic peg to the right-hand side, or moving it to the left to lock that clip into place. The clip does seem a little less sturdy than others we’ve looked at – it’s possible you’ll break it if you get it trapped in a doorway or banister, but that’s still an improvement on breaking your iPod.
Quite pleasing to look at, this case offers a little idiosyncratic style. It delivers good protection for a silicone case, though the screen protector design may benefit from a different approach, the belt clip seems a bit flimsy.