As far as we know, Tony Stark did not invent the aircraft-grade aluminum Draco Elegance case for iPhone 5/5S. He might as well have, this bumper case is ultra-light with sexy ergonomic curves and Iron Man’s gold and red metal finish (though there’s a number of other finishes to choose from).
Aluminum bumper cases are not exactly new to the iPhone scene. ElementCase has been the big contender in the market for years now. More recently, there’s been a variety of unique and not-so-unique bumpers popping up. The Elegance, by Draco, is the most exotic we’ve seen to date. The curves are outrageous, stylish and ergonomic. Draco says it’s subtly inspired by the waist, which explains the hourglass figure.
The two tone color scheme is brilliant, plus you have a choice of colors. The front bezel is glossy gold; it reminds us of iPhone 3G/3GS’s shiny chrome bezel. The back and frame are matte and still have a really nice shimmer.
Draco’s Elegance is two-pieces that are screwed together. Like many of its competitors, this aluminum bumper is locked onto your iPhone and its only escape is the included hex key. There’s a frame and a bezel. iPhone pops into the frame, the bezel is placed on the top, and four little hex screws are screwed into the back.
There’s a few neat features which keep the Elegance usable. There’s an aluminum volume rocker, vibrate toggle, and lock button– they’re appropriately colored and placed. Unfortunately the vibrate toggle is not attached to the case, so be careful when applying or removing the case. On the bottom of the case are large, but deep, port openings. Unfortunately, some headphones and 3rd-party chargers will not be compatible. There’s also cutouts designed to reduce signal interference, and there’s a hook cutout in case you want to add a lanyard.
Draco Elegance is ultra-light (it’s great). It’s supposedly well protected and has internal silicon shock absorption. The case just exceeds the front and back faces of iPhone, a screen protector wouldn’t be a bad idea. We wouldn’t recommend laying iPhone face down. The case just adds millimeters to iPhones thickness, though it does add some bulk to the sides. It’s comfortable in-hand, all of its curves are smooth. There’s also a pretty decent grip because of the hourglass figure.
Before getting into a comparison between Draco and ElementCase, note that the Draco is a lot less expensive than the ElementCase aluminum bumpers. ElementCase has more premium packaging and a number of accessories to complement the case and provide additional iPhone protection. ElementCase includes a hex screwdriver which can live on your keychain, Draco includes an actual L-shaped hex key that’s sure to be misplaced or never handy. ElementCases generally only require the removal of one or two screws to get iPhone in and out, not four. Case vs case, the Draco Elegance is just as elegant in form, quality, and appearance. They did a really nice job. Our only aesthetic gripe with Draco Elegance is the shiny bezel, like iPhone 3G/3GS, will soon start to scuff. This may not be too bad though.
Peoples jaws drop when I tell them I have an Iron Man case. While it’s unofficial, it’s a very impressive case. Right now there’s 5 other color schemes to choose from, there’s a silver or gold bezel with a red, blue, or black frame/back. At $99.99 it’s by all means a pricey case. ElementCase aluminum bumpers start at $139 and work up higher than $200. While the Draco Elegance is a little more minimalistic about accessories, it could be a worthy price to completely transform your iPhone 5 or 5S. The Draco Elegance Case is currently available from DracoDesignInc.com or Amazon.com
The Good: Iron Man case! Extremely unique, Different color options, Very lightweight, Metal overlays for vibrate toggle, volume rocker, and lock button, Decently protective, Comfortable in-hand
The Bad: Not enough front-protection, It’s a process to apply and remove (4 screws), Hex key is not convenient for travel, Vibrate toggle can be lost easily if case is not attached.