It always gives me a charge to see a company expand the boundaries of an existing idea. So, when I received the press material for the Porter Case it piqued my interest enough to call the company and find out more about it. I talked with the company president and arranged to have a case sent for evaluation.
I must say, the Porter Case ($329) is one of the coolest problem-solving transportation tools I’ve ever seen. Take a regular hard-shell carry-on size suitcase, give it a 42″ padded telescoping handle, 4″ ball-bearing wheels, solid hardware and a steel-reinforced handle and you’ve only started to describe this versatile case.
As an engineer, I’m always schlepping gear to and from studios. Microphones, rack bags stocked with reverbs, compressors, guitar amps, DAT machines, you name it. It always took many trips to get everything into the control room. I can see this being whittled down to one trip with the Porter Case.
No, this isn’t a clown car, but you can jam a surprising amount of gear into it. Its internal dimensions are 21.5″ long, 13.5″ wide and 7″ high. I fit a number of mics, cables and accessories inside. I emptied it and then tried a 2 RU Marantz CD-640 CD burner, including rack ears, and I had room to spare.
The interior can be customized. I had the standard case fitted with the foamcase option. Depending on what I was packing, I could add foam until I achieved a tight fit. Other interior options are a panel divider system, a photo case, a computer case and an AV case. The case is lined with a nonwoven charcoal tweed material and there is an elastic cross-hooking strap in the lid of the standard case.
That’s versatile enough, but where this case really shines is on the outside. The handle extends to let you wheel it around like a standard suitcase. In addition, the handle can be flipped over to turn the case into a dolly. The Porter Case Web site has an animated graphic of this feature.
Once the handle is flipped down the case itself becomes the base for a dolly that will hold up to 200 lb of gear on top. Once the gear is stacked on top, an exterior tie-down strap attaches to the handle, over the gear and then to a D-ring on the side of the case securing everything snugly. No need to carry a one-trick dolly around for those heavy trips.
All hardware and fittings are wicked sturdy and if this wasn’t a carry-on I would have no problem trusting this case to a shipper or an airline. The case comes with a three-year limited warranty.
Contact: Porter Case at 800-356-8348.