Hardcase vs. Softcase? - Handpan accessories
Should I get a hardcase or a softcase for my handpan? Do I even need a handpan case? We will break down the options to help you make your own informed decision. (This list is not exhaustive, but it is a great place to start).
Hardcases for handpans (Evatek and Panji).
There are still only a few hardcases in the market for handpan players at the time of this writing. The most well known to date is the Evatek by Hardcase Technologies. These bags are manufactured in Italy and are popular worldwide with handpan players. They became one of the first bag companies to add additional solid support built right into the bag. The outside is made of a lightweight hard shell, and inside there is a bit of foam for cushioning your handpan. The backpack straps allow you to take this bag anywhere, and it can protect your handpan from minor bumps and falls.
Another great option for a hard case comes from Panji Bags, located in Colorado, USA. Panji bags have a great reputation for their supreme protection. They are custom made unique for each order and their use of recycled materials make them incredibly sturdy. They have a very distinct look, and are made with the highest quality in mind. They are however definitely heavier and more expensive than a manufactured bag like the Evatek.
Soft bags - (Namana & maker bags)
Namana is a company based out of the Ukraine. We love their bags! We stock a simple padded version in our store. But you can also find a wide variety of unique bags on their etsy shop.
The Namana bags are high quality, and custom tailored to fit your handpan, so make sure you know your handpan size when ordering direct. They host a huge variety of color options, additional pockets, embroidery options, and more protection via hard plastic inserts, if you want to add that. Basically, you name it, and they can build it for you. The plastic inserts may be a nice option for a lightweight bag that straddles the line between impact resistant and lightweight.
Other "maker soft bag" options are available, although we can't possibly list them all here. We are defining a "maker bag" as one that is normally sold or branded exclusively by handpan builders, for their customers.
The basics of most maker bags usually include: limited color choices, and non-existent or extremely limited padding. The bags may or may not have pockets or backpack straps available. They are usually provided at the time of purchase, or sometimes available for a small price. Again, this all varies by maker.
Now, which should you choose?
If you want to maximize protection, shift towards the heavier cases. If you want comfort and portability, (and are a relatively careful individual), shift towards the lightweight options. Here's our breakdown with Pros and Cons.