Received my new e13ctron Hybrid S4 yesterday in the mail and figured I'd share some early impressions. (See this thread for a review of the non-Hybrid version) Some Background In my opinion, aluminum bumper cases are the classiest looking cases on the market for your iPhone. Whether it's an Element Vapor or an e13ctron, the fit and finish of these cases is unparalleled. Unfortunately, the problem with aluminum cases has always been that they interact with the antenna on the iPhone 4 and attenuate the signal--whether it is your 3G, WiFi, or GPS signal, some or all of them were affected to different degrees. To combat this, case manufacturers have had to find inventive ways to keep the aluminum from coming in contact with the iPhone's metal band. Element does this by using a small synthetic band that keeps the Vapor Pro (not the Vapor 4) from touching the antenna. E13ctron addressed the issue by making the bottom half of their two piece aluminum case not aluminum; instead, they've replaced it with an acetyl material, which is a hard thermoplastic. So between the top aluminum band and the iPhone, you get a rubbery gasket that keeps the two from touching, and on the bottom you now have a hard, machined plastic. Which of the two is better? Well that's beyond the scope of this poster. I've never used a Vapor case, so I can't comment on it. I chose the e13ctron based on looks alone. It's worth noting that the Vapor case is twice the price of the e13ctron, which may be a huge factor for some users. Fortunately, I'm in a place where money wasn't the limiting factor...but I just prefer the look of the e13ctron over the Vapor. Fit Well I can't really say enough about the fit. It's difficult to use the word "perfect"...but the fit is perfect. I mean I imagine that somewhere, in some e13ctron lab, some fella took precise laser measurements of the iPhone 4 and used those to machine a piece of aluminum with absolutely zero tolerances. As you can see in the pics below, it's fits exactly like e13ctron wanted it to be. There is absolutely no wiggle, give, flex, or bend anywhere in the case. It is truly like an extension of the case. My only concern with the fit is that there is a very small space that is created between the case and the phone. This groove seems like it will build up dirt and crud as time goes on...we'll see. Feel Do you know what aluminum feels like? Well that's what an aluminum case feels like ...or at least that's what the top half of this case feels like as that's the only aluminum piece. I chose the matte option, which I'm told has more grip than its polished brethren. The bottom half of acetyl plastic feels like a high quality, very very hard plastic. The only way to really tell that is not aluminum is that it lacks the grain inherent to aluminum. It almost feels like a metal. It's a bit smoother than the aluminum and you can certainly tell that they are different materials, but it doesn't feel cheap at all. The only thing I would change about the feel would be rounding off the corners a bit more. They're not sharp, but there are definite edges that you can feel when holding the phone. It's not really a criticism as it was a design choice and adds to the machined look of the case, but rather a personal preference. Performance It's been 16 hours since I received my iPhone 4S and installed the e13ctron hybrid...so I'm not exactly in a place to accurately comment on performance. I will say that there seems to be absolutely no impact on the antennas. My GPS acquires signal rapdily, my WiFi signal is strong throughout the house, and my 3G bars are in the same place they are on my wife's iPhone 4 with an Otterbox Defender in place. I'll update this post as times goes on. Protection Sorry guys, but I won't be doing a drop test with my 64Gb 4S, so all I can do here is theorize. I'm a pretty careful guy and take good care of my toys, so I feel that I'm the kind of person who can go without a Lifecase or Defender and be just fine. In my profession, however, I carry my iPhone on my waist ALL day and constantly pull it out for phone calls, email, and apps...so the imminent threat of accidents is always there. In the past, I've used the Otterbox Commuter as it seems to be the perfect marriage of style and protection. In fact, if I could only use one case the rest of my life, the Commuter would be it. But my ADD has gotten the better of me this go round, and I started looking for something different. I rarely/never droped my iPhone, so why was I lugging around a two layer case adding significant bulk to my device? After much soul searching, an aluminum bumper case seemed to be what I needed. In daily use, I'd actually imagine that this little aluminum bumper is much more protective than people give it credit for. The top and bottom of the case are protected by a lip so that it's never setting on the ground. If you drop the case, it seems that the low tolerances of the aluminum and plastic would (hopefully) transmit some of that shock around the band. So instead of absorbing the shock like in silicon cases, you're transmitting it around the edge of the iPhone in the aluminum. At least that's my theory. I'll update this post after my first drop. It's worth noting that I do plan on putting a clear shield on the back of the phone to protect it from scuffs. In addition, carbon and designer backplates have become very popular with aluminum cases...they're just not my style. To me, the seem to say you're trying to hard. Subtle elegance speaks much louder, imho. Conclusion In the end, this really is a phenomenal case at an unbeatable price. To me, you get unrivaled style and elegance in the best looking case at any price range for any phone. It just feels different and expensive...heck, I was asked at dinner last night by two different people what case I had on my phone. It's a head turner and you won't likely run into someone else with the same case over the life of your phone. Right now they are running a discount if you use the coupon code 'E1315' getting you 15% off your order; that brings the e13tron Hybrid to $59, a true steal if you ask me.