Cases, News, Product Reviews

[Review] Incipio Altas For iPhone 5: The Best Waterproof Case I’ve Ever Used

Over the years, I’ve had the chance to try just about every rugged, durable, and waterproof case on the market. I thought I had seen it all, and while most of them work great, there always seems to be too many sacrifices to keep the case on long-term. When I first saw the Incipio Atlas at CES 2013, I was intrigued. It wasn’t until recently, I realized, that Incipio really had a real gem on their hands with this new waterproof case.

Obviously, saying that the Atlas is “the best waterproof case” is purely based on my opinion and experience with reviewing other similar cases, but until now, I haven’t found one that I liked as much as the Atlas. If you’re unfamiliar with its design, Incipio’s Atlas case packs a slim and sleek profile with no silly o-rings to worry about, a tempered glass screen protector, and tough outer-shell. Sounds like a good combination, right?

Check out my video review below for all of the details:

The Good

Incipio made a fantastic choice by going with a built-in tempered glass screen protector. In case you’re curious, this screen protector sits perfectly flush with the iPhone 5’s screen. I didn’t experience any sensitivity issues throughout my testing and review.

As I mentioned above, I also love that there’s no o-ring to worry about. That’s always been part of my uncertainty with other cases. If the o-ring goes bad or breaks, you’re out of luck. Not only will Incipio protect your device with a rugged case, they even offer a limited warranty that covers the Atlas and your device. That’s protection and reassurance that you can rely on.

The Bad

Incipio’s Atlas is no exception to the slightly muffled sound that I’ve experienced with similar cases. It’s definitely not a deal breaker, but I wanted to point that out. I also found the back panel of the case a little difficult to remove when trying to extract my iPhone, but it’s also the tight fit that keeps my device safe.

While the tempered glass screen protector is awesome, I found that it attracts fingerprints easily during regular use. It just seemed to lack a strong, if any, oleophobic coating. Still, it’s way better than a plastic screen protector.

Also, though I wasn’t bother by this, it’s important to note that the Atlas won’t work with most docks and some third-party lightning connectors due to the actual port being recessed because of the case’s design.

Final Thoughts

If you’re looking for a great rugged and waterproof iPhone 5 case, look no further than the Incipio Atlas. I stand by my title when I say that this is the best waterproof case I have used to date. It looks like everyone needs to step up their game in order to compete with Incipio. I’d recommend the Atlas to anyone looking for ultimate protection and style from a case with a worry-free warranty.

If you’d like to pick up an Atlas case for yourself, they’re currently available on Incipio’s website for $89.99. I’ve also seen it on sale for a few bucks less here on Amazon.

[xrr rating=5/5]
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  1. Drew

    May 9, 2013 at 3:27 pm

    Dom…. have you reviewed the new Griffin iPhone 5 waterproof case?


  2. Stephen

    June 20, 2013 at 11:16 am

    So, Dom… what would you choose. The Atlas or the Lifeproof?


  3. disqus_YBOM5TYkUA

    January 28, 2014 at 2:20 pm

    I used Lifeproof for over a year until the plastic screen protector came unglued from the front. I recently bought Incipio Atlas for iphone 5s hoping it would be superior. The sound is better through speaker. However, there is a SERIOUS, potentially dangerous design flaw: the touch screen does NOT work in cold weather – it’s impossible to slide it open, or up, or use the camera. You will NOT be able to answer calls, texts, etc. I spend a lot of time mountain biking year round and have tried it repeatedly in the cold that has been here in New England this Winter. Furthermore, my fingers are sometimes so cold that even if I wanted to prize the case open to use the phone I might not be able to get it open to use it without the case – if I were to be injured it would be useless. That aside, I can’t respond to calls and texts if I want when it’s cold outside. I do keep the phone in my jacket pocket, or in the outer pocket of my hydration pack – I suppose if one could keep it right against the skin maybe that would work, but that’s not feasible for me.
    As well, even at normal room temperatures the touch screen is not as sensitive to touch as Lifeproof, and it requires considerable pressure, esp. near the bottom – really makes using the phone not fun. I have tried taking it out of the case and pressing it firmly against the inside of the front, etc, and reassembling, and it doesn’t help.The slide up bar at the bottom, which allows access to Bluetooth and other functions without turning the phone on, doesn’t work at all in any conditions. I am returning it and will probably have to buy another Lifeproof, even though I’m sure the Lifeproof doesn’t have the shock protection that the Atlas has, esp. for the screen, but Lifeproof at least still allows the touch screen to function at cold temperatures. Lifeproof’s speaker functioning is unbelievably bad, though, and their suggestion to “blow” through the speaker opening doesn’t really help. I *wish* there was a thin, weather- and shockproof case that really works, but doubt there is.


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