Welcome to another installment of the Gadgetmac Guide! Every now and then we like to compile a list of all the best, top and favorite cases for a new device that comes along. Now that the iPhone 5 is out and in your hands, you probably want to get yourself a protective case, wallet case, sleeve or skin, especially if you haven't grabbed Apple's AppleCare+ accidental protection plan. If an awesome case is what you're looking for, then we're here to help you find just that! Clickety clack that magical button below to enter our ultimate list of our top favorite rugged - daily driver - ultra slim - and scratch protective iPhone 5 cases and skins.
First up in line is one of our all time favorite minimalist silicone-made cases for the iPhone by SwitchEasy. The $20 Colors case for the iPhone 5 is not only affordably priced, but features amazingly tactile 'Jelly Bean' home, volume and sleep/wake buttons that have a candylicious glossy finished, convex button shape that beg to be pressed. And as the name insinuates, the Colors case is available in a magnitude of 13 vibrant and laid-back colors. The Colors case includes two screen protectors and two headphone and Lightning port dust covers.
SwitchEasy's $20 Nude back snap-on case for the iPhone 5 is yet another affordably priced, solid finding we think would be perfect if you're looking for an ultra-slim protective case. The Nude is made from a strong scratch-resistant polycarbonate plastic and features built-in tactile buttons, albeit less appealing than the Colors' iconic Jelly Bean buttons. The Nude is available 8 glossy finished colors including clear as well as in 4 matte coated colors, and includes two screen protectors, one back protector as well as two headphone and Lightning port dust covers.
Incase's suit of Slider cases are sold pretty much everywhere. The $35 Crystal and Metallic Slider Case for the iPhone 5 continues the sliding trend in a slimmer profile and eye-catching colors. Incase's Slider Case features a removable bottom piece for easy docking and a durable hardshell polycarbonate construction with an interior gaurdrail to help absorb shock. The Slider Case is available in three glossy finished crystal and three soft-touch coated metallic colors.
No case guide is complete without the cult classic. Speck's $35 CandyShell and CandyShell Satin cases for the iPhone 5 offer great all around protection with a slim profile. The CandyShell's single-piece construction features an infused rubbery core for shock-absorption and a tough, hard outer shell with a glossy finish that easily slips into a pocket. The CandyShell also protects the iPhone's buttons with rubber and provides a protective raised rim around the screen. While the CandyShell comes in a slew of glossy colors, the CandyShell Satin is available in two, soft-touch matte coated colors. We suggest you take a look at Speck's iPhone 5 case collection. You'll feel like a kid at a candy shop.
Systm's cool looking, drop protective $35 Chisel iPhone 5 case packs some scientific protection that combines loads of tactile grip, a tough hard yet flexible outer layer with a soft TPU inner core. The Chisel also features a layer of what Systm calls Poron XRD Foam to help protect against extreme impacts. The Chisel case is easy to install and remove. It can be yours in either black, white or pink.
Spigen's $33 Illuzion Series faux-leather wallet case for the iPhone 5 will harbour three of your cards inside a folio-esque cover case with a convenient earpiece cutout so you can talk over the phone even when the case is closed. The Illuzion's matte textured faux-leather mimics wood grain to provide grip and features a padded interior with a slim polycarbonate frame that securely holds and protects the iPhone from external impacts. Spigen's Illuzion wallet case is available in four two-tone colors.
The $39 Dutch-designed, hand-crafted Mujjo iPhone 5 wallet sleeve is an elegant and sophisticated credit card, business card and EarPods sleeve case that snuggly hugs the slim iPhone 5 inside of it. It blends dark gray and light colored 100% wool felt with a naturally tanned leather closure slash pull tab, and finished off with a water repellent treatment.
The $50 Dodocase slim wallet sleeve for the iPhone 5 is yet another unique and stylish offering from a company that is better known for its beautiful bookbined folio cases. Dodocase's iPhone 5 wallet sleeve is hand-crafted from a sage colored, waxed duck canvas with a bright orange cotton interior lining, and wrapped around with stitched genuine mahogany leather to perfectly and securely fit Apple's new iPhone. Dodocase's iPhone 5 wallet sleeve also features a pocket on either side for storing cards and cash. How rustic!
In case you feel the need for something a bit more old fashioned and that's pretty ironic isn't it, then Pad & Quill's thinnest case for the iPhone 5 called the Little Pocket Book is a fantastic getaway of protection and convenience rolled into one. The $55 Little Pocket Book doubles as a wallet case thanks to a wide cash pocket and three individual card slots including one with a see thru window for displaying a drivers' license or ID cards. This case is handmade using stitched genuine leather from the inside out, and with a protective satin-finished baltic birch wood internal frame. Pad & Quills Little Pocket Book also features a back-facing camera opening and an elastic band to keep the cover shut. It comes in black or brown leather colors with your choice of contrasting interior leather.
The $147 Sector 5 by Element Case is one of the most impressive aluminum machined iPhone 5 cases you'll come across. And by no means is it cheap. It features a unique, ergonomic modular design that's comfortable to hold and can adapt to various accessory upgrades that will be coming soon. It also features an anodized matte Flux aluminum finish and a trussed design for lightweight strength and durability. The Sector 5's multilink fasting systems let's users install and remove the case quickly using only one screw while the plastic RF bridge eliminated any reception issues.
If you're looking for tough, rugged cases then the $35 Urban Armor Gear iPhone 5 cases will surely satisfy your needs. It features a unique, military looking armored shell exterior with an impact resistant soft inner core to help absorb and protect against those accidental drops and knocks. The UAG case is available in 6 colors, ammunition not included.
Griffin's $50 Survivor case for the iPhone 5 is built to protect your investment with extreme-duty toughness. It's designed to meet military standards to protect your iPhone 5 against extreme conditions such as rain, dirt, sand, dust, shock, impacts and vibrations. The Survivor case is built using a shatter-resistant polycarbonate shell with a built-in screen shield and covered with thick, shock-absorbing silicone that will keep all of your ports sealed in, yet easily accessible. Griffin's Survivor case includes a detachable heavy-duty belt clip and is available in too many colors.
The $35 Commuter Series case for the iPhone 5 by Otterbox is one of the sleekest looking tough cases available. The Commuter will easily slip into your pocket and features a two-layer construction using a hard polycarbonate shell and a soft, shock-absorbing silicone layer that protrudes to provide ample grip. It's available in 8 different two-tone colors and includes an adhesive screen shield.
Our most favorite leather sleeve continues to be the $99 CalypsoCase. A luxurious hand-crafted hardshell sleeve made with premium Italian leather, reinforced with a titanium edges for superior protection and finished off with a hand-stitched leather trim. The CalypsoCase for the iPhone 5 is available in four leather colors and trims.
If you like wood skins, it hardly gets any better than these elegant, hand-crafted $38 Trunket skins made out of real American Rosewood wood stained in beautiful colors. Trunket skins will keep your iPhone 5 protected against scratches and scuffs, and have a special adhesive that can be removed without leaving residue. Each skin features a thin, finely sanded front and back wood skin with a charming brushed stainless steel elephant logo inlay that sits seamlessly flush with the wood.
GelaSkins are our go-to gadget skins for their creative, artistic style selection that completely transforms the look of your iPhone 5 without adding any bulk or noticeable thickness. The $15 GelaSkins will completely cover the front and back sides of your iPhone 5 with colorful designs complete with a matching wallpaper, and add a tough layer of scratch protection using an ultra-thin 3M adhesive vinyl wrap that's easy to apply, re-apply and remove without leaving behind any residue.