We’re back reviewing another couple of aluminium bumpers from Taiwanese-based specialist DevilCase. We previously reviewed the Sony Xperia Z5 bumper and now we’re rounding up the series by reviewing the DevilCase Aluminium Bumpers for the Xperia Z5 Premium and Xperia Z5 Compact.
DevilCase bumpers are available to buy from the company’s Taiwanese site, and they ship worldwide. However, it is probably easier to buy through Amazon.com for those in the US and through Amazon.co.uk for those in Europe. In the US, the Xperia Z5 Compact bumper costs $54, whilst the Z5 Premium bumper is $57. In the UK, both DevilCase bumpers cost £36.99. Click through for our full thoughts.
DevilCase offers their aluminium bumpers in various colours to suit all tastes. You will need to check availability to see which colours are in stock, but options include Black, Champagne Gold, Red, Rose Gold and Coral Red. We are testing the black bumpers for both handsets.
The packaging highlights the attention to detail gone into creating these bumpers including the high precision finish using a CNC milling machine, which provides a perfectly customised fit and easy installation. Inside the box, you will find the DevilCase aluminium bumper itself, a screwdriver (or hex key) and a number of spare bumper screws.
The Xperia Z5 Premium and Xperia Z5 Compact aluminium bumpers can be seen side-by-side below. The Xperia Z5 Premium is, obviously, the larger frame on the left of the picture. The key difference to the installation of the bumpers is that the Z5 Premium uses a hex (or Allen) key and longer screws – this is the same for all of the DevilCase bumpers we’ve reviewed to date. The Xperia Z5 Compact bumper uses normal screws that are significantly smaller than the ones that DevilCase typically uses.
DevilCase lines the inside of the frame with rubber to provide better protection against small drops and more importantly, avoids scratching the metal frame of your Sony Xperia device.
This rubber protection also applies to each corner of the bumper frame.
The nonintrusive DevilCase logo sits on the bottom left of the frame.
For the Xperia Z5 Premium bumper, you will need to use the supplied hex key to remove the two screws that hold the frame in place. As with all of the other DevilCase bumpers we reviewed, the key fits the screws perfectly and removing/installing the screws provides no friction, which highlights the precision construction involved.
It is a slightly different story for the Sony Xperia Z5 Compact bumper. The two screws that hold the frame together do not sit on the corners like every other DevilCase bumper tested to date. Instead, they are located just slightly off corner and as a consequence much smaller screws are used to hold the frame in place. In addition, the supplied screwdriver did not get a firm grip on the screw head, causing slippage when trying to remove the screw from a tight position. Whilst, you can eventually tighten the frame securely it does take a bit of care. We would also be a bit cautious over how these very small screws would fare over the longer-term, something we never felt was an issue with the previous hex head screws.
Once the bumpers for both handsets are installed, it provides a very elegant finish and look, complementing each handset very well.
The top of each of the bumpers leaves ample room for anything but very large-headphone jacks and there are openings for the mic’s too.
The bottom of the bumper leaves enough room to access the exposed micro USB port for charging. There is also an opening for the lanyard on the Xperia Z5 Premium.
The right side of the bumpers uses metal cover buttons for the volume rocker and dedicated camera button. We had no issues pressing these buttons and found they offer a decent amount of travel and good response. The middle finger sensor power button is left exposed, with a small depression on either side of the button so that you can easily feel where the button sits.
The left side of the Xperia Z5 Premium bumper has no cutouts. This is largely the same for the Xperia Z5 Compact bumper, which has a small cutout for using the lanyard.
The bumper offers a decent amount of grip around the edges, certainly more so than what can be very slippery handsets when used without any kind of case/bumper. As the bumper adds very little weight and thickness to the handset, means it feels very good in the hand, with its slightly curved edges. Of course, this means that the rear of the handset is completely exposed to show off that lovely Xperia colour you purchased.
Overall, The DevilCase bumpers for the Xperia Z5 Compact and Z5 Premium do a great job of maintaining Sony’s design language, whilst offering a small amount of protection against small knocks. The aluminium bumpers are precision crafted and complement the elegance of the Xperia Z5 Compact/Premium handsets very well.
– High precision aluminium bumper with a perfect, solid fit
– Bumper complements elegance of the Xperia Z5 series
– Access to key ports and buttons
– Covered metallic buttons for volume/camera easy to use
– Provides light protection without sacrificing the design
– Very quick and easy to install
– Spare bumper screws included
– The Xperia Z5 Compact bumper uses very small screws, which makes us cautious on whether they will become loose over long-term use
– You may suffer mobile signal loss depending on your location/carrier
– Bumper not compatible with Sony’s official USB Charging Dock (you can use it with the DevilDock though)