Having a 17-inch laptop can be great for gaming, video editing, or even just on-the-go multitasking. But they’re also big and bulky, and it can be hard to take them around, especially since it seems like the larger the laptop, the less options there are when it comes to finding a case.
If you’re looking for a way to protect your large, expensive laptop, it’s particularly important to make a good choice. In this guide we’ll go over the factors you should consider when choosing a 17-inch laptop case that not only provides protection but also fits in with your lifestyle. At the end, we’ve also got 10 of our favorites to help you get started.
How to Choose a 17-Inch Laptop Case – Buying Guide
As important as protection is, it’s equally important to find a case that fits in your life and that you’ll actually use. After all, the best laptop case isn’t going to do you any good if you leave it at home.
Check the Interior Dimensions to See if Your Laptop Will Fit
Despite being called the same thing, not all 17-inch laptops have the same dimensions. It’s also important to note that how large a case looks doesn’t necessarily determine if your laptop will fit.
Instead, you have to pay attention to the inner dimensions. Some cases will also specifically note that they fit particular laptop models, so that’s something else to look out for if you don’t feel like measuring your laptop.
Look for Extra Padding to Keep Your Laptop Safe
Laptops are expensive, and 17-inch laptops are particularly so. That’s why it’s important to look for special padding features that can offer an extra layer of protection beyond just a little bit of extra fabric. Some features to look for include reinforced corners, shockproof padding, and foam lining.
If Your Case Isn’t Going in a Bag, Look for Padded, Removeable Shoulder Straps
At 17 inches, your laptop can get pretty bulky and heavy. So if you’re not planning on putting it into a separate bag, it makes sense to look for a case that also has a strap. Keeping the laptop’s weight in mind, look for straps that have extra padding on the shoulder area.
If you think you might want to switch off between carrying it alone and carrying it in a bag, look for a case with removable straps for the most versatility.
Storage Space Lets You Keep Your Accessories in One Place
As mobile and portable as laptops are, they often require a few extra bits and bobs that we need to take along.
An easy way to make sure everything stays together is to look for a case that has storage compartments. Some cases have just enough space for a charger and earbuds, while others can hold a notebook or two as well. Just remember that the more a case can hold, the larger it will be–with and without things in it.
Water Resistance Adds an Extra Layer of Protection
Rain happens. Water bottle spills happen. A case is meant to protect your laptop, and a waterproof or water resistant case can do more than just protect it from drops and scratches.
While having a water-resistant body is generally good enough for most people, if you’re really serious about water protection, be sure to check if the zippers are also water resistant as that’s often a spot that gets ignored.
Top 10 Best 17-Inch Laptop Cases to Buy Online
Now that you know what to look for, here are our 10 favorites to help you get started on your search.
10. Nidoo 17-Inch Laptop Sleeve
Slim, Low Profile Case
If you’re just looking for a little extra padding, this could be the case for you. It adds just a quarter of an inch of bulk to all sides and has enough padding to protect your laptop from any jostling or bumps inside your bag.
It’s well made for its price, and with two zippers, even if one breaks, you’ll still have a useable case. However, if you’re looking for something that would protect your laptop from a fall, this is not it.
|Interior Size||16.7″ x 12.2″ x 0.6″|
|Padding||Foam padding, plush interior|
9. Case Logic 17.3-Inch Laptop Bag
Great for Work with Endless Storage
This professional, work-friendly case could just be the only bag you need. It has storage space not just for your charger but documents, accessories, and even a tablet as well without adding any unsightly bumps or bulges.
It’s lightweight and provides moderate protection for your laptop, but without anything else in the case with it, you may find that the padding is a bit too thin for true peace of mind, especially if your laptop is on the expensive side.
|Interior Size||16.4″ x 11.8″ x 1.7″|
|Padding||Neoprene lining, structured case|
8. Wiwu 17.3-Inch Convertible Laptop Backpack
Double the Straps, Half the Burden
17 inches of screen can be pretty painful to carry, even with the softest, most comfortable shoulder strap. This case splits the burden in two by turning into a backpack. This is great for those who have long commutes or bad backs.
It has a ton of storage space but is much slimmer than your average backpack-with-a-laptop-sleeve. That being said, it’s still larger than a plain old case would be, so if you don’t see yourself using the straps often, you may want to go with another.
|Interior Size||17.5″ x 13.2″ x 3.5″|
|Padding||Padded laptop pocket within main compartment|
|Strap||Padded, removable (backpack style and cross-body)|
7. Mosiso Laptop Sleeve
Slim, Slick Laptop Case
This slim laptop case offers just enough protection for those looking for a little peace of mind that doesn’t get in the way. It is made from a slick, water repellant polyester that slips easily into your bag.
It has a zipped storage pocket, but be aware that because of its slim profile, anything you put into it will bulge slightly and add bulk to the case.
|Interior Size||17.13″ x 12.8″ x 0.79″|
|Padding||Foam padding, fleece lining|
6. Kayond Black Rose Laptop Sleeve
Cute Sleeve for a Tight Fit
One of the tradeoffs you sometimes have to make for a larger laptop is a lack of cute cases–no longer! This case has high-quality metal zippers as well as a zippered inner pocket to keep your things neatly separated.
However, this case is best for 17-inchers on the smaller side. Although you should definitely check the measurements before making a call, it’s likely going to be a tight fit for anything above 17 inches. (Sorry, 17.3-inchers.)
|Interior Size||16.5″ x 11.2″ x 1.18″|
5. Casematix Gamers Laptop Carry Case
Hardcore Protection for Gaming Laptops
For those with Super Serious Gaming Laptops who need complete peace of mind to protect their upgrades and expensive graphics cards, this could be your case. It has a hard polymer shell with locks that are water-, dust-, and moisture-proof.
While there aren’t any separate storage compartments, you can easily slip accessories into the main case. Just note that you have to cut the foam yourself to match the shape of your laptop before you use it.
|Interior Size||18.75” x 13.25” x 3.25”|
|Padding||4 layers of foam, shock absorbing layer, hard case|
4. Tomtoc Original 360° Protective Laptop Shoulder Bag
Professional and Slim
This laptop case strikes a good balance between professional and good looking, slim and practical. It features extra padding on the bottom and sides to protect from bumps and has ample room for accessory storage.
However, some reviewers note that although the bottom and corners are well protected, the sides and surfaces may be lacking if you’re looking for something more heavy-duty.
|Interior Size||16.53″ x 11.41″ x 1.2″|
|Padding||Shockproof bottom and corners, plush interior|
3. Evecase Laptop Sleeve
Shock Absorbing Sleeve
If you’re looking for the protection of a larger case but the slimmer profile of a sleeve, this could be your case. The diamond pattern foam outer provides an extra layer of shock absorption to protect against falls.
The inner lining is also extremely soft and smooth, making for a scratch-free easy entrance. It’s on the roomy side, so even larger 17-inchers will fit with no issues.
|Interior Size||17.3″ x 12″ x 1.00″|
|Padding||Diamond-pattern, shock absorbent outer, fleece lining|
2. Kaldi Laptop Bag
Protection on a Budget
For those looking for a balance of function and price, this under-$30 case could be what you’re looking for. It has shock absorbent padding on the edges as well as the inner surfaces so that your laptop is protected on all sides.
It has ample storage and could easily be used as your day bag for work or school. However, at this price point, you do sacrifice a little bit of material quality, but if you’re looking for protection on a budget, this case offers great value.
|Interior Size||18.5″ x 13.5″ x 3.2″|
|Padding||Shockproof padding on all sides|
1. CoolBELL 17.3 inch Laptop Messenger Bag
For People on the Go
This bag is ideal for those on the go. It has a ton of storage space, all-metal zippers and buckles, two layers of shockproof foam padding, and a wide belt that easily slips over luggage handles.
It’s good looking and functional and wipes clean in case of an accidental spill. For those who just want one bag for your laptop and stuff, this could be it.
|Interior Size||17.3″ x 11.8″ x 3.5″|
|Padding||2 layers of shockproof padding|
Finding the right laptop case for your 17-inch laptop is really about striking a balance between protection and functionality. Just do your best not to go without one!
By Jacqueline Oshiro
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