ICEM Design Aura & Aura Pro Aluminum iPhone 4S Case Review

With so many different styles of cases on the market for the iPhone, it seems like even aluminum bumpers are starting to become a dime a dozen. ICEM Design hopes to stand out of the crowd with their new Aura and Aura Pro line of cases with a new design that requires to screws in its assembly. Its got a unique design and form factor, but is the product itself any good? 

Read on after the jump to find out.

The cases themselves are comprised of two different parts. A bumper piece which is plastic on the Aura and metal on the Aura pro along with a backplate that slides onto the bumper piece. The design overall is one that works, it looks great and is easy to install. Looking around the case at the cutouts, you'll find the buttons are covered up and the case has plastic nubs on it which are responsive. The vibrate/ring switch is a very small cutout and its also very deep making access to it a bit hard. Also because of that this case is not compatible with the Verizon iPhone 4 or the 4S. The headphone jack is a bit on the small side, so you'll have trouble with bigger plugs. The bottom has one big cutout and the case works fine with thicker 30-pin connector cables. The camera and LED flash however have a keyhole style cutout with no blackening out so it results in extremely washed out pictures. Another odd detail is the SIM card cutout on the left side, its a bit unnecessary. 

So how is the case like to use? To be straight forward, it's pretty awful. Problems start as soon as it comes time to install, when the bumper that the phone sits in is loose. Just lay in the phone like the directions say and there's enough extra space for the phone to be constantly sliding around. Putting on the back plate doesn't help either, which brings us to the next issue. The backplate actually rubs on the back of the iPhone which can result in scratching up the glass back of your device. Another issue is that the center piece on the backplate started separating from the frame after just a couple days. 

The problems don't even stop there. Trying to do everyday tasks on your phone with the Aura Pro is useless. As soon as you put it on, it complete depletes your signal. Take the case off and it goes right back up to where it should be. The Aura on the other hand sports a plastic bumper instead of a metal one, so it works just fine. The case itself is just pretty bulky and feels heavy too, but the inside isn't lined with felt or any protective material so there's still the possibility of scratching up the metal band on your device. 

Overall the Aura and Aura Pro by ICEM Design are just garbage. They fall apart, don't fit right, and destroy the signal on your phone. You're honestly better off having no case at all than this horrid product. If you were thinking of getting this case, save your cash (and your phone) and look elsewhere.