The Truffol iPhone case: quality comes with a literal cost

High-end cases are plentiful for any iPhone. These cases tend to be crafted from excellent materials — from leather to steel to wood, there’s something for anyone willing to spend a decent amount of cash on an accessory.

Truffol is one of the newest entrants in the premium category. Instead of offering a full line of cases for various devices, Truffol is focused on the iPhone. They offer two cases: the  Signature Nature and the Signature Classic. This review is of the former.

For $75 USD, one would rightfully expect every aspect of this case to scream quality. That expectation is met in almost every way, though there is one major snag.

First, the packaging of the case is fantastic. The installation directions are easy to follow (pro-tip: if at first you don’t succeed, keep trying — it took me a few tries to line the frame up with the buttons on my 5S). It’s great to see a company take such measures to ensure that the product is well-received. A screen protector and headphone jack extender are included in the packaging.

The case itself is fantastic. The metal frame is incredibly sleek on any iPhone, and the buttons manage to feel very well designed. I can’t express how great it is to see a case put an emphasis on the buttons of the device, so major kudos to Truffol for that.

The metal frame is interesting, but the real luxury comes from the backing. My review unit included a wooden back. The finish of the wood is smooth, but the rounded nature of the back makes the device easier to hold. There is a noticeably increase in both thickness and weight, but frankly, it’s more than worth it.

Protection is just fine: the case will protect your device against moderate falls, but remember that the Truffol basically leaves the front of the device completely accessible. It is raised, so you can set your device down on the screen without any worry, but don’t expect the case to enable a swimming iPhone.

There is one major downside: the wooden back, being thicker than a normal plastic case, slightly obstructs the flash for the camera. This may not be an issue on the iPhone 5, where the flash is demonstrably smaller than on the 5S, but I could tell a difference in low-light conditions between photos with the case on and those without it.

For me, that’s a hard pill to swallow: I use my iPhone’s camera all the time, and even a slight hit in low-light performance isn’t worth the amazing build and materials of this case.

Ultimately, the Truffol case is the best example of a wooden accessory I have seen. It is, however, tragically flawed — if you use your iPhone’s camera frequently, I can’t recommend the case. However, if the flash issue is of no concern, there is no better case, in terms of materials, available for the iPhone 5 or 5S today.

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