Palm V series
Orbino leather cases are to the Palm V series PDA as a Rolex watch is to your wrist. Pure unadulterated
luxury. These cases are hand-crafted by master artisans in Italy and are made of
full-grain calfskin generally reserved for the finest Italian shoes.
The Orbino cases are made by the same craftsmen that stitch or have
stitched for the top
European luxury brands such as Prada, Fendi and Hugo Boss.
The cases are available
in several fashion colors:
Radiant Silver Grey (glass glazed metallic calfskin)
Radiant Umbrian Green (luxury metallic patent leather)
Radiant Blue (luxury metallic calfskin)
Deep Teal Blue (glass glazed luxury calfskin)
Black (glass glazed luxury calfskin – in zinc alloy flanks or palladium flanks)
Burgundy Cordovan (glass glazed luxury calfskin – in zinc alloy flanks or palladium flanks)
I was presented with a Carmel Tan and the Burgundy Cordovan cases for review.
These cases exude style and richness. They almost glow. Actually the brilliant
sheen comes from an ancient polishing technique known as ‘glass glazing’.
The leather texture is very slick and smooth. Holding your PDA in these cases
just feels plain great.
The Palm V and actually even an m500 (haven’t tested the m505 yet) fit in
this case like a hand in a glove. The Orbino is a slipper style case in that the
PDA slides into the play-through holster part of the case and is held there with
by friction. No Velcro of any kind is used in this case! The inside of the
holster is lined with a black satin material.
The holster part of the case is like a firm shell. The front portion is a
thicker leather with rolled edges around the screen. Due to the thickness of the
leather in this area, it is somewhat difficult to tap around the extreme edges
with your stylus.
The Orbino is unique in that the leather actually covers the application
buttons. Small discs are embedded in the leather above each embossed leather
button so that pressure on the leather activates the appropriate button.
Although I would prefer direct contact with the buttons, this feature does make
the case look pretty cool. The only thing I can see wrong with this design is
that there may be a potential to damage the embossed leather icons if a
fingernail was used to press the buttons instead of a fingertip. Also, game
playing might be a bit restrictive. Otherwise, pressing the buttons thru the
leather seems to work just fine.
The sides of the case are reinforced on the outside with either Nickel, Zinc
Alloy or Palladium flanks. They have the Orbino logo tastefully inscribed on
them. You maybe asking, what is Palladium. It is a metal that is even more
precious than Platinum. Besides looking very stylish, these flanks actually give
quite a bit of rigidity and strength to the sides of this case. The Carmel Tan
case that I reviewed had brushed Zinc Alloy flanks while the Burgundy Cordovan
case had the Palladium. Can you tell a difference? Yes, while the Zinc flanks on
the Carmel Tan case look very nice, the Palladium has a beautiful gleam that
pretty much begs you to run your fingers over them.
The back of the case has a cutout for the hotsync port. You can actually sync
via the cradle while your PDA is in this case. And unlike other slipper cases,
the Orbino does not require any ‘breaking in’ period. Both the cases that I
received for review fit in the cradle perfectly the very first time. You can
also use this case easily with other accessories such as the Stowaway
The screen cover portion of the case is stiff and thick enough to protect the
screen in the event of a bump. One wide card slot is available for business
cards or papers. Using this slot for credit card is not recommended do the fact
that the cover uses a magneto-closure system to hold it closed. Instead of only
using 2 sets of magnets to keep the cover closed, the Orbino uses four sets. One
in each corner. The effect of the strong magnets makes the cover almost jump to
the closed position. I have no worries that the cover would come open on its
Orbino cases are extremely fine. Of course they are not for the typical person
that buys their clothes at Target and shoes at Foot Locker like ummmm, yours
truly. They are meant for the executive that shops at Saks Fifth Avenue and has
a summer house in the Hamptons. These are very expensive cases that don’t
protect your Palm any better than slipper type cases from other well known
makers. But boy do they make a statement and look fantastic. If you have the
cash and wanna join the jet set, you’ll definitely want an Orbino.
Price: $149 / $189 with Palladium
Hand made in Italy
Sync in cradle
Probably won’t protect the PDA much in the event of a long fall