Not too long ago, I published my AirPods Max review. I covered everything I could think of at the time and now that I’ve been using my AirPods Max for more than a month, I stand by everything that I said. If you’ve read that review, then you know that one of the key points I brought up related to the included AirPods Max cases.
Namely, I called the case garbage.
For those that don’t own AirPods Max, that may sound a little harsh. But anyone who picked up a pair knows that I speak the truth.
That’s why I’m writing this post! Today, we’re going to look at the best AirPods Max cases. I didn’t want to include too many since there are only so many ways to design a headphones case.
They’ll all vary in price, material, and design, though, so I’m sure everyone reading will be able to find one that suits their preferences.
Before getting into the case recommendations, though, I wanted to take a moment to explain my thought process behind this list. Feel free to use the table of contents to skip right to the cases if you want!
Note: As always, I am not sponsored by any of these products in any way. The links in this post are not affiliate links, either. These are my honest and unbiased opinions on the products listed in this article.
- Why you should look at third-party AirPods Max cases
- What should you look for when comparing AirPods Max cases?
- The best AirPods Max cases
- What are your favorite AirPods Max cases?
Why you should look at third-party AirPods Max cases
As mentioned, I have previously called the included AirPods Max case garbage. And I stand by that today. If you aren’t familiar with that case, though, let me fill you in on why it sucks.
From a purely aesthetic point of view, I actually think Apple’s AirPods Max case looks pretty good. It’s simple and unique and matches the design of the AirPods Max very well.
Functionally, though, it’s a complete disaster.
First, Apple decided to make the AirPods Max case the only way to “turn off” your AirPods Max. When you put them in the case, the headphones enter a power-saving mode. If they aren’t in the case, then they’ll continue to drain as if they were sitting on your head.
Why Apple didn’t include an Off Switch or just have them enter power-saving mode whenever they’re off your head is anybody’s guess.
Second, the AirPods Max case doesn’t provide any protection whatsoever. It only covers the muffs of your AirPods Max, which are the most durable part of the headphones. The mesh headband, on the other hand, is left exposed.
That means you can never be rough with your AirPods Max. They can’t go in your bag, they can’t be left around pets or children, they can’t be transported in the rain.
Putting them in the case adds no meaningful protection. Even the muffs, which are covered by the Smart Case, are only covered by a thin bit of pleather. So it’s arguable that this even provides any protection whatsoever.
In other words, the Smart Case’s only purpose is to turn your AirPods Max off when you aren’t wearing them. It’s a complete waste.
That’s why you need to look at third-party AirPods Max cases. I wouldn’t even call this an opinion. It’s a necessity. Unless your AirPods live in an office or studio, you’re going to need an extra case.
What should you look for when comparing AirPods Max cases?
Fortunately, third-party AirPods Max cases can put your AirPods Max into power-saving mode just like the basic Smart Case can. So there’s no reason to hang onto the included case or to avoid buying a third-party option.
After having owned AirPods Max for a month now, I’ve come up with some criteria that I recommend you consider when looking at AirPods Max cases. Those criteria include:
- A soft interior. I doubt you’ll even find an AirPods Max case that doesn’t have a soft interior. If you do, though, don’t grab it! Your AirPods Max have a lot of cushiony and soft components that need to rest on an equally soft and cushy case.
- A hard exterior. This is a bit more of an opinion, but I think hard-shell cases are the way to go. Soft leather options may look nicer, but they provide less protection.
- Waterproofing is important. The AirPods Max don’t have any built-in resilience to the elements (don’t wear them during exercise!). So a waterproof/resistant case will go a long way towards keeping your AirPods safe.
- A carrying handle. I didn’t even consider whether the case I bought had a handle before buying it. In hindsight, though, this was a mistake. It makes it harder to juggle my AirPods Max while carrying the rest of my things. It’s not too hard to add a clip or sew a handle to a case, but still, better to avoid that if you can.
- Price. Of course, you’ll also want to consider the price of an AirPods Max case. Unsurprisingly, it’s not hard to find a case that costs upwards of $100. However, you can easily find a great case for under $30. Considering how expensive the AirPods Max are, I would recommend sticking to the more affordable options. If you want a premium AirPods Max case to match the premium feel of these headphones, though, don’t worry. There are plenty of flashy options to fit your style.
The best AirPods Max cases
Alright! Now that we’ve got the background stuff out of the way, we can get into the best AirPods Max cases currently available. As mentioned earlier, I’ll be including a range of prices, styles, and materials so that you can find one that suits your needs.
This list won’t be comprehensive, though! There are tons of other great cases out there. I just stopped at these nine to avoid putting redundant options on here. Feel free to root around on Amazon though if you don’t find one on this list that you like!
1. The SAMYERLEN Smart Case (my daily driver)
First on our list of the best AirPods Max cases is the one that I use daily: The SAMYERLEN Smart Case.
This case has several things going for it that make it the ideal AirPods Max case for me and, I imagine, most of you.
It’s very affordable. It costs just $18 on Amazon. That’s less than a new Lightning cable from Apple – the price is right!
This case’s design is perfectly simple. Nothing flashy or fancy. You wouldn’t even know that AirPods Max were inside it if you didn’t know better. It’s not ugly, but it’s not attractive either. It’s just right.
The SAMYERLEN Smart Case also has all of the features I previously mentioned. The interior is soft, the exterior is hard, it’s water-resistant enough for carrying it in the rain, it puts your AirPods Max into low-power mode.
The one thing this case is missing is a handle. As I mentioned before, I wish I had considered this before buying this case. It doesn’t ruin it, and I still highly recommend it. It does have a small, sturdy loop that you can clip a carabiner to. That helps a little, but I still would’ve liked a handle.
Other than that it’s been great! Excellent quality for the price, does exactly what it needs to and nothing more. If you don’t want to overthink things, this is the one to grab!
2. The WaterField shield case
Coming in at number two on our list of the best AirPods Max cases is one that you’ll see recommended everywhere. I can see why, since it’s about as expensive and grandiose as an AirPods Max case can get.
The WaterField shield case is a very inspired and high-quality case. It’s made from leather by default, though there are vegan options available. In both options, the exterior is soft and pliable, and the interior is filled with some soft fluffy material that cradles your AirPods Max.
Between the exterior and interior is a layer of thick foam. This provides some protection, though not as much as a hardshell case. It comes in plenty of colors, too (chocolate, black, blue, red, and green), though I think they’re all a little plain.
One of the selling points that WaterField Designs emphasizes with this case is the butterfly magnet. There are two little flaps inside of the case that have a magnet on each end. You can pinch these two flaps together so that the magnets in each one stick.
You can put the pinched version of these flaps in between your AirPods Max muffs whenever they’re folded flat so that they don’t scrape together. The magnets also put your AirPods Max into low-power mode.
The reason these flaps can come apart, though, is to make room for the Smart Case. If you want to keep using the default Smart Case along with this case, you can! Just undo these flaps so that they lay flat again. Then, put your AirPods Max in the WaterField case while they’re also in the Smart Case.
Overall, this is a nice case. It’s made by a team of passionate San Francisco designers with sustainable materials. It provides more protection than the Smart Case and it’ll impress your friends.
The one issue with the WaterField AirPods Max case is the price. It’s $99 for the leather variations and $89 for the vegan options. No one ever said luxury was cheap, I guess!
3. The UAG Ration case
Next, we have the UAG Ration case. I think this is a more sensible case when compared to the WaterField shield case, though it doesn’t look quite as premium.
This case comes in black and olive. Like the previous case, UAG’s Ration case will let you keep your Smart Case with your AirPods Max. It has room to fit both.
The outside is a hard case with a pleasant texture, making it easy to grip. The inside is filled with egg carton foam, which cradles your AirPods Max without being too showy. There is also a pocket in one half of the case, which is perfect for holding your charging cable.
It comes with posable interior components that you can use to secure your AirPods Max in case, which is a relatively unique feature. For instance, there is a foldable piece inside the case that you can use to stabilize your AirPods Max headband.
Also like WaterField Designs’ case, there is a butterfly flap. This is what allows you to use it with your Smart Case while still having low-power mode turn on with or without the Smart Case.
It’s priced at $79. It’s not the most stylish or trendy option, but I do like how rugged it looks. Just wish there were more colors!
4. The Spigen Klasden Pouch
Fourth on our list of the best AirPods Max cases is one that offers a premium feel without the premium price tag. The Spigen Klasden Pouch.
This case is unique in that both the exterior and interior are “hard”, meaning that there isn’t anything plush about this case. It’s not exactly hard plastic, but there aren’t any cushions or felt liners in this one.
Instead, Spigen Klasden chose to make this case precisely engineered. It doesn’t need a plush interior because it exactly holds your AirPods Max. The movement of your headphones is so limited that a plush lining isn’t really necessary.
This case includes a loop for easy carrying and an internal compartment for carrying your AirPods Max charger. Each of these components looks slick and neat.
The Spigen Klasden Pouch is just $28. At that price point, I would look at this as a competitor to the SAMYERLEN Smart Case over the pricier options like the WaterField shield case.
While the price is great, there are some missing features. It only comes in one color, black, which is “fine”, but nothing more. It also doesn’t look like this case can put your AirPods Max into power-saving mode. You’ll have to put your AirPods Max into their Smart Case and then into this case if you want to reserve power.
There are some compromises, but the price is low enough that I think they’re acceptable, especially if you like this design.
5. The BlackBrook Pouch & Desk Stand
At number five we have one of the most unique AirPods Max cases around: The BlackBrook Pouch & Desk Stand.
This case lives up to that name. It features a unique design that doubles as a stand and a case for your AirPods Max.
You can turn this pouch upside down and set it on your desk. When you do, it becomes a stand that you can rest your AirPods Max on.
This is made possible by two leather flaps on the inside of the pouch that you can clip together. Because these flaps are shorter than the opening of the pouch, they force the pouch to open in a circle. This makes the base for the stand that the pouch turns into.
If you unclip these flaps, then you can place your AirPods Max inside and carry them around.
The BlackBrook Pouch and Desk Stand costs $150 and comes in four different leather options. There are no vegan variations.
From an aesthetics perspective, I like this case. It’s a great desk piece and shows off your AirPods Max in a unique way.
It is a bit lacking in the features department, though.
First, this case offers next to no protection. There is no cushiony foam or hard shell. It’s just a leather pouch. You’ll be protected from scratches, but anything more than that and your AirPods Max might as well be bare.
Second, because it’s just a pouch, it doesn’t snugly hold your AirPods Max. It’s not quite the same as tossing them in your backpack, but it’s not that far off, either. There aren’t any compartments for cables, either, nor is there a handle.
Third, this case doesn’t put your AirPods Max in low-power mode. So you’ll need to use it with the Smart Case for that.
The fourth and final issue with this case is, if you haven’t realized it by now, that there is nothing specific to AirPods Max in its design. It might as well just be a general headphones case.
BlackBear even acknowledges this a bit in the promo photos, which show this case being used with a pair of Beats.
Now, I don’t think these reasons make this a bad case. It’s just not a very functional or rugged case. Grab this if you’re not worried about protecting your AirPods Max and instead just want a cool piece to go with them. It’s perfect for that.
If you want real protection, though, then I’d recommend nearly any other option on this list.
6. The Spigen Ultra Hybrid PRO
The sixth recommendation on our list of AirPods Max cases is another unique one. The Spigen Ultra Hybrid PRO isn’t a carrying case but instead a pair of plastic covers for your AirPods muffs.
These clear plastic covers snap onto your AirPods Max muffs and help protect them against scratches and debris. Because they’re clear, you can still see the color of your AirPods Max with them on. They will look a little shinier, though.
The point of these covers should be pretty clear (pun intended), so I don’t have much more to say on their functionality. However, I do want to spend a minute discussing why I wouldn’t necessarily recommend them to all AirPods Max owners.
I used to have a clear plastic case like this that snapped on my iPod Classic back in the day. I liked it for the same reason that users like this case; it was clear and protective.
Over time, though, dirt and debris did work their way in between the plastic and the device. That led to scratching and dirt buildup that was far worse than if I had avoided the plastic case altogether.
Now, the reviews of these AirPods Max covers don’t seem to mention this phenomenon whatsoever. I’ve seen people saying these are so snug that they’re difficult to remove (which might be its own issue, in hindsight). So maybe they’re tight enough to not let any dirt in.
I tend to doubt this, though. My recommendation to you would be to buy these cautiously and to keep a close eye on any potential dirt buildup. You’re snapping one hard surface onto another, which can be problematic if you’re not prepared for the associated risks.
Also, I did see one or two reviews mentioning that the plastic interfered with the active noise cancellation feature of AirPods Max due to the plastic covering the mics. Again, I didn’t see very many reviewers complaining about this, but it’s something to keep in mind!
That’s my little soapbox! Buy these with caution and make sure to keep your AirPods Max clean. If you can do those things, then I’m sure this will be a protective and stylish option.
7. The Vibeside Premium Smart Case
If I could go back in time, I probably would’ve ordered this case over the SAMYERLEN Smart Case. It meets all of the same needs while including a few features that I wish my current case had.
The Vibeside Premium Smart Case costs just $32. It’s made from vegan leather, has a simple black design, and cradles your AirPods Max very well. It has a deep, form-fitted pocket for your headphones to sit in. That pocket is lined with fluff to protect your AirPods Max against scratches and drops.
The exterior of the case is a hard shell, making it more resistant to the elements than a soft-shell case. It puts your AirPods Max into low-power mode whenever you place them inside and there’s an extra compartment for keeping your charging cables and blocks.
The Vibeside Premium Smart Case also has a handle, which is one of the most important features in my mind.
There are a few things I don’t like about this case. I wish it had more color options available, and I wish the Vibeside logo wasn’t so bold on the side. But for the price, this might be the best value on this list.
8. The co2CREA Hard Carrying Case
Last up on our list of the best AirPods Max cases is an accessory with one of the least catchy names I’ve ever seen. I don’t know why so many tech device and accessory manufacturers insist on these bizarre naming conventions (I’m looking at you, Sony).
Regardless, the co2CREA Hard Carrying Case is a great AirPods Max case, especially considering the price. It’s just $28 on Amazon and comes with a feature that is all too rare among these cases: Colors!
While I wish the colors of these cases extended to the exterior (they’re all black on the outside but colorful on the inside), I do love the color options. They’re vibrant and bold variations of red, blue, and pink (black and white are also there).
As a side note, the renders on the Amazon page for this product show AirPods Max sets that have been edited. The colors are super intense and vibrant, and it just makes me even more disappointed in how muted and drab the real AirPods Max color options are.
These headphones are similar to the other budget options on this list. Hard shell exterior, soft and fluffy interior, a compartment for your cables.
The advantage that this case has over others is the great colors. It also has a loop handle so you can easily carry your AirPods Max around.
This case doesn’t include a low-power activation feature. However, it has enough room that you can place your AirPods Max in the case with your Smart Case on, so just use it with your Smart Case and you’ll be fine.
What are your favorite AirPods Max cases?
And that’s it! Those are the best AirPods Max cases currently available. As you can see, there are plenty of people making over-the-top designer cases, and there are plenty of people making quality affordable options.
All of them are better than the included Smart Case that Apple ships with AirPods Max.
See you next time!