I have been following this case and Avies Tech for some time now. I didn’t get a chance to get in on their kickstarter luckily it was successful before I found it listed. I had high expectations on the design and all I can say is I am not disappointed. It has everything I have been looking for and the potential for much more.
There are two options available to purchase these (Both are offering free shipping):
1) Visit the eBay listing
2) Buy it straight from their website www.shopavies.com.
Now on to some of my photos sorry the quality isn’t quite as nice as the stock above.
I had some long screws in a bin and could easily attach this case to a monitor bracket or a piece of plexiglass when I am using a breadboard.
I really like the black cable with this case it easily folded up and fits without any issue for all my projects. I like how it takes an 8″ cable and leaves just enough for connections. The alternate boards I have leave way to much cable and I typically stick with a much smaller one.
The cable sticks out about 2 1/2″ which is long enough to get to all my projects without getting in the way. The cable in this configuration works perfectly with my self assembled Gertboad kit.
I have several cases now up to 5 different types and this is by far my all time favorite. Avies Tech is a member of the forums and post quite often I appreciate anyone that supports their customers and gets involved as much as they have.
The potential for this case is unlimited and Avies Tech has stated on their site, Kickstarter campaign, and on the forums that they would like to make varying lids, but I think that will all depend on getting support and more cases sold. I would love to see a taller case top to allow projects like LCD screens to be wired up and put into a cutout maybe even add a plexi top that could be cut out as needed and screwed on top of the case.
Lets sum this up:
Case is lightweight made from Aluminum with black powder coated finish. (This case is cooler to the touch than any plastic case I have) and the powder coat gives it a nice surface so it won’t slip out of your hands. (Have had that happen)
All the ports are available I have a few cases that have no cut-out for the GPIO cables.
Sturdy won’t break (See above when a case falls from your hands)
Easy to assemble and can run topless. I often leave the top off my cases to place my add on boards and this case allows for that. With the mounting screws the Pi is safe and transports well.
Future expansions would be easy to design. Tops with cutouts for LCD’s for example. Submit your comments here or to Avies Tech and see what could happen.
Cost is very reasonable.
The design isn’t way over the top which would make it more cumbersome than is necessary.
I try to be as critical as possible but I am not finding much to put here.
It only works with the 512MB board would need some protection for the 256MB version. This is mostly a con on the side of lacking mounting holes on the original Pi
Needs some documentation on the size of screws it uses. Mostly the mounting screws underneath. Could be difficult for some to get the right screws. (This could be fixed on their sales posts. And probably will be but I need something in this section.) Also the screws can be run all the way through the bottom so care is needed so you don’t short out any connections on the Pi if you get too long a screw. (Could be fixed at home with a dab of hot glue.)
The cutouts on the back of the lid are confusing at first (See pic below). It appears that possibly due to differing Micro USB cables they placed the rear of the case very close to the connectors (this would be due to lack of standards for cables). But there is a cutout to the GPIO pins. The lid actually sits on top of my ribbon cable. This may not be a con for some people as some have posted that they power their Pi from the GPIO 5v rails. However, some may be afraid that the exposed cutout could allow for you to inadvertently touch the pins. This part I’ll leave up to each viewer to decide for themselves and let Avies Tech know what they think. The top could easily be over-sized along with a larger USB cutout to accommodate something that encases the pins.
Suggestions: Note, they have mention of tops that will become available but haven’t revealed the designs. I think a possible alternative is a top that is actually longer. My card protrudes about 3/4″ from the back. Maybe a top that is 1″ longer with an open bottom so it covers the SD Card completely leaving the bottom open so you can attach a power cord could work nicely. Or one that encompasses the entire top and bottom and slides forward with a cutout to allow a cable to pass through. This could stop you from breaking the SD Slot if the case were to fall off a table.
A discussion on some of my cases:
In all fairness here are some of the cases I have along with some pros and cons. Also a pic so you can visualize the varying sizes of each.
Each case has it’s selling points.
- Pi Pan my new favorite easy to assemble and dis-assemble, GPIO support, sturdy, and customization via additional tops is possible.
- The Multicomp’s clear case has clips which can hold any board but lacks GPIO access and dis-assembling the case isn’t easy.
- The PiBow is beautiful but won’t allow riser boards to fit and removal of the GPIO cable takes effort due to all the layering and screws that look best put in from the top.
- The Dragon claw case worked for quite some time and I could remove the top when needed but when it hit the floor (luckily no Pi was inside it) well the pieces wouldn’t go back together.