Protect Tech Gear

There are lots of summer hot spots that are far from tech friendly. Consumer Reports has just checked out bags designed to keep you connected and protected.

In this photo taken Dec. 7, 2010, Sawyer Rummelhart, 4, holds his mothers iPad showing the game "The Smurf's Village, " at his families home in Gridley, Calif.(AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

Summer means spending time at the beach … or at the pool …. And you want to take your tech gear wherever you go, right? So what happens when your pricey piece ends up in the drink?

You can buy bags to protect your stuff from the elements. Consumer Reports tested several, ranging in price from $15 to almost $40.

The first challenge? Dropping each one into water.

Carol Mangis with Consumer Reports explains, "We really didn't want to risk real electronics devices, so we used objects that were similar in size and weight, like paperback books and Post-it notes."

All the bags kept the contents dry as a bone. Next challenge? Sand.

You know how that gets everywhere!

This time the cases were dropped in sand and partially covered. The bags got the job done here, too.

The best of the bunch? The DryCase bags. They also provided the most secure fit. You'll pay $38 for the large one and $29 for the small.

Carol says, "We decided we'd also try out a regular grocery-style bag with a sealable top to see if that protected devices just as well."

Turns out the Hefty OneZip gallon-sized bag protected against water …
... and did a fine job with the sand. And at just 10 cents a bag, you'll have more money to spend on sunscreen.

Consumer Reports says the Hefty bag should work well for trips to the beach or afternoons by the pool.
For more extreme outdoor situations, like kayaking or mountain climbing, it's probably worth getting one of the bags specifically designed to protect your electronic gear.

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