Incipio has been making solid well built cases for many years now and that hasn’t changed with their Performance Series for iPhone. Choosing a case for your phone is often a daunting task as there are literally thousands on the market. I’ve reviewed a fair amount of cases here on Techaeris and even I have a hard time choosing which one I’d prefer to use. When Incipio sent me their Performance Series for the iPhone 6s it was also a very hard choice to make. The protection levels run the gambit here, from slim low level protection to beefy maximum protection. Let’s hit them one by one.
Incipio Performance Series Level 1
Level 1 protection is a simple TPU type flexible case with a shock absorbing impact ridge that protects your device from short drops and tumbles. The case is also tear and stretch proof which means it won’t end up getting saggy like other cases and not fit properly. The wrap around design does a fair job of protecting the front screen, especially when you lay the device down on a flat table or surface. The design is pleasing, plain and minimal with the Incipio logo subtly placed at the bottom ridge of the case.
The case does not have raised power button and volume rocker covers, instead the covers are flush. At first I thought this might have made for poor tactile feedback but Incipio did a good job of making those button points provide enough feel to know that you’re pressing the iPhone’s buttons. Still, I would have liked to have seen the power button and volume rocker have a raised cover for simple feel. It’s by no means a deal breaker because you get great tactile feel, but it is something I’d like to have seen. The Performance Series level 1 is a great minimal case for those who don’t like any added bulk to their iPhone.
Incipio Performance Series Level 2
Level 2 protection kicks up the rigidity a notch giving your device a bit more stability. Level 2 also includes the same shock absorbing impact ridge which will protect your device from drops and tumbles. With the higher rigidity level of this case you’ll get better protection from a little higher drop than level 1. Level 2 also features the wrap around design which does an excellent job of screen protection when laid screen down on a flat table or surface. The design is nearly identical to the level 1 case with the exception of the rigidity and a scratch resistant outer shell. Incipio calls this a co-molded design, meaning there are two layers of molded together.
As with the level 1, this case also does not have raised power button or volume rocker covers. Incipio made the power button and volume rocker points on this case a bit softer than the rest of the frame so that helps with tactile feedback. Still, raised button covers help with the feel when you’re not looking down or at your phone, but this is still an excellent case and provides a bit better drop protection the level 1.
Incipio Performance Series Level 3
Level 3 gets even more rigid with what Incipio calls a try-molded design, this time 3 layers molded together to add extra protection. The shock absorbing ridge is a common theme in the Performance Series and is here as well. The scratch resistant outer shell also finds its way into level 3. This level will provide even higher drop protection for your device and also has the wrap around design offering excellent screen protection on flat tables and surfaces. The design language is the same as the previous levels with the exception of an available version with a flip front cover.
The flip front cover offers great screen protection when dropped but mostly when the device is not on a flat surface with cover closed. The power button and volume rockers are once again flush with decent tactile feel but as these cases get more rigid it does take some effort to push those buttons. Still not a deal breaker, I’ve seen worse tactile feel from cases with raised buttons and these are still decent enough.
Incipio Performance Series Level 4
Level 4 protection get even more serious and even more rigid. Even with the amount of increased rigidity I didn’t find it difficult to slip the phone in and out of the case. The same shock absorbing ridge is found around the edge of this case as with the rest. Level 4 adds a honeycomb inner liner which adds superior shock absorbing protection to your device. This case will offer great drop protection from higher levels because of that honeycomb design. The design is the same as the other levels.
Level 4 also comes with a heavy duty holster which is offers great front protection as the phone faces in when holstered. Holsters aren’t for everyone but they are a great tool for those who do work where they’re constantly bumping into things or leaning over or on things. The same flush buttons are here as well, my same suggestion stands, raised button please. Overall this is a great case with super protection.
Incipio Performance Series Level 5
Level 5 is the Performance Series max protection. Rigidity level here is heavy and is going to provide the best drop protection from head level. Level 5 includes the shock absorbing ridge as well as honeycomb inner liner and the holster belt clip. The level 5 frame is made from what Incipio is calling Dual Infused Plextonium Polycarbonate. Not exactly sure what that means but I do know that the case is very sturdy and offers great drop protection.
Level 5 also includes an integrated screen protector which does a great job protecting the front of the phone from scratches and laying it on non-flat surfaces. Raised buttons are once again missing from level 5 and the design remains the same as level 1-4. Overall though, this is a tough case and is meant for extreme users. It does add a bit of bulk though, especially with the holster.
The Incipio Performance Series offers something for everyone, from the minimalist to the extreme sports person. Well designed, offering great protection at all levels these are worth looking at and picking up if you’re digging the look.
*We were sent review samples of the Incipio Performance Series for the purposes of this review.
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