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Writer: John Potis
Review component retail: $135.99

When I first gazed upon a picture of the Slappa 600 Pro HardBody CD case, I thought it looked like overkill for anybody but the professional DJ whom its 'Pro' designation seems to target. But then my assistant walked into my office. He looked over my shoulder and saw the 600 Pro on my computer screen. His jaw just about hit the floor. He knew instantly that he wanted one. Badly. You see, Eric is a DeadHead. And if you know anything about the Grateful Dead, you know that not only did the band allow the recording of their concerts, they encouraged it. And not just for personal use. They also encouraged the trading and collecting of the recordings with just one proviso; no selling, no profiting. Grateful Dead fans are a relentlessly obsessive bunch, too. One CD from any given concert tour doesn't do it. A recording from each and every single concert venue may quench their desire. But I get the feeling that if there were two fans recording the same show, both recordings would be required for complete fulfillment. Jerry is no longer with us and the cassette tape is no longer the medium of
choice - surprise. So DeadHeads have embraced the recordable CD. Just today Eric confided that his significant other doesn't even attempt to get to his computer these days. It's entrenched in stacks and stacks of incoming and outgoing bootleg CDs. Jewel boxes? Don't be silly. Just CDs. Hundreds of 'em. Can you now dig his unfettered enthusiasm to go Slappa based on just a picture?

When I got home, I looked around my own room. I gotta confess that it didn't look much better than I imagine his computer does. While the 600 Pro won't hold my entire CD and SACD collection, it'll more than handle every CD I listen to with any degree of regularity and more - and it'll keep them at hand in a very convenient package. What I don't listen to with regularity (no matter how infrequent) can be put away with all those cumbersome jewel boxes. Suddenly the Pro 600 didn't look like overkill at all. It was starting to look both handy and convenient. When I finally got a chance to lay hands on it, it looked better yet.

The 600 Pro can be used two ways. You can store 300 discs and their covers each in a separate yet paired (stacked) pocket. Or you can store them sans covers and fill every pocket with a CD. I suspect that pros will go with the 600 disc scheme but users like me will go the 300 disc route. It's still a lot of discs and the ability to scan the cover art greatly aids in the location of a particular disc. The Pro 600 is a slick package. Slappa calls it a hard body case but I'd call it semi-hard. Structural integrity is assured via a molded honeycomb frame (for light-weight rigidity) formed from what Slappa calls xEVA, a durable yet flexible body that is heat, impact and water resistant. Much of the Pro 600 is covered in what Slappa calls Z-suede; what I would call a very nice faux leather. Faux? It may be faux but it sure is nice. I was impressed. For those looking to take the Pro 600 on the road, it features a heavy duty 5-stage telescopic handle and sturdy urethane wheels. Why carry when you can roll, dawg? Of course, the macho among us will sling the Pro 600 around by its heavy duty handle. No sweat. The Pro 600 also easily meets airline carry-on luggage size requirements as it measures a surprisingly compact 18 inches long by 9 inches deep and 14 inches tall.

Inside, the Pro600 treats your CDs kindly with Slappa's proprietary and patented d2 pockets. d2 appears to be wear-resistant, strong and completely non-abrasive. Each d2 pocket is stitched for long wear, not heat sealed. Unlike velvet, the d2 doesn't attract nor hold lint and dust. The Pro 600 also has a mesh cargo pocket inside for accessory storage as well as a H3 disc cleaning cloth - nice touches both.

At first blush, the only downside to the Pro 600 may be its not inconsiderable MSRP of $135.99. At second blush, it's by far the least expensive way I know to store so many CDs - and it's a fraction of what I paid for the storage cabinet I use. It's also portable, making it an even more intriguing option. Got more than one system in the house? I'll bet the CD you want is always upstairs when you're downstairs. Now you can take the whole collection up and down with you. Got company coming and you just want to tidy up the room? Got a system at your vacation home? There are just so many reasons that portability is good even if you never plan on taking your CDs out of the house.

Slappa provides a full-satisfaction guarantee and there's no limit on the warranty. They stand behind all of their products and offer returns/ exchanges for any of their online customers. In the event of a customer receiving a case with a manufacturing defect, all they ask is that the customer send the product to their Jacksonville/FL warehouse while they ship out replacement product right away. They will also refund shipping costs to send the case back. Lastly, 6moons readers who use the discount code "6moons" will receive a 10% discount when ordering Slappa products - on top of any specials Slappa may already have going on. That makes for a good deal that's even better and an even more over-the-top recommendation. Overkill? Get real!

Manufacturer's website