When it comes to getting a case to put on your smartphone, there are two main reasons for doing so. One is to protect that device you just dropped a boat load of cash on. And the other is to add some grip to that phone, so it doesn't slip out of your hand. Cases that can do both of those things, while still looking amazing, are winners in our book. And the VRS Design Shine Guard Series Case for the LG G5 may do just that.
So first things first, the Shine Guard Series comes in two colors. One is completely clear and frost, while the other has a black frame. Both of which look really nice on the LG G5. We do have both colors here, which we've been using on the LG G5 for the better part of a week. And spoiler alert, we really like them. So the Shine Guard Series is a bit different when compared to most other cases. The back isn't flat, it's actually a bit rigid in a triangle pattern. Some of it is clear, while others is a bit more frost looking. This is great because it keeps the case mostly clear so you can still show off the style of the LG G5, but it is also giving you some grip on the back. The LG G5 is already a bit slippery, luckily the Shine Guard fixes that. During my usage with this case, I have not had the LG G5 slip out of my hands at all. Of course, part of that is due to the soft-touch plastic located on the frame of the case.
The Shine Guard is made of polycarbonate (which is the back) and Thermoplastic Polyurethane (which is the sides). It makes for an impact resistant case. This means that if you do happen to drop your LG G5, as much as no one wants it to happen it's going to happen, the case will be able to take the majority of the impact and keep your LG G5 nice and safe. After all, that's one of the main reasons for buying this case, right? I haven't dropped the LG G5, but it does protect the thing quite well. It also has a lip over the front of the device. So if you drop the LG G5 face first, the display won't get damaged at all. Although the case will. But let's face it, it's much cheaper to replace a case than a smartphone.
VRS Design has two cut outs on the back of this case. One is for the fingerprint sensor/power button. Which doesn't affect using the fingerprint sensor/power button at all. I was still able to turn the phone on/off without much of an issue, as well as using the fingerprint sensor as I normally would. The other cut out on the back is for the camera module. It's a pretty thin cut out, meaning it really only leaves the camera module out. So naturally this could affect the wide-angle camera that is on the back of the LG G5 here. We've taken pictures with that wide-angle lens with the case on and off, and the pictures look exactly the same. So while some cases (Spigen is one of them) get in the way of that wide-angle lens, the VRS Design Shine Guard isn't one of them – neither is their High Pro Shield which we reviewed recently. This means you can pop this case on and use it without it getting in the way of taking pictures. Good news for everyone.
We have a few cut outs on the top and bottom as well. The bottom has a cut out for the USB Type-C port, and the cut out is wide enough so that you can still charge your phone without any issues. There's also one for the microphone and speaker. The speaker sounds the same as when there's no case on, so the case doesn't get in the way of that either. On the top there's the IR Blaster, microphone and 3.5mm headphone jack. Much like with the USB Type-C port, the headphone jack will still work perfectly fine with any pair of headphones.
The volume rocker does not have it's own cut out unfortunately. However the volume rocker's buttons are a bit rigid, so you can feel where they are. Where the volume rocker is actually just one long button on the LG G5, some have had issues with pushing volume down and getting volume up in some cases. That isn't an issue here. Pressing volume down, no matter where you press on that button, will result in it turning down the volume. And it's the same for the volume up button. Definitely makes taking screenshots much easier on the LG G5.
The LG G5 already felt quite nice in the hand, but with the Shine Guard Series case on it, it feels even better in the hand. It has plenty of grip, and with the LG G5 being a bit smaller, it feels like its the perfect size – of course that's my opinion and yours may be different. The black color does stand out a bit more, but the frost color isn't a bad option either. Both have turned out to be rather fantastic cases during our short time with using them on the LG G5.
VRS Design is offering up the Shine Guard Series for the LG G5 right now on Amazon. It's available for just under $18. Keep in mind that prices over on Amazon do tend to fluctuate over time. So that may go up or down between the time this was written and the time you buy it. Both of which are linked below. If you're wondering if the Shine Guard Series is a good choice to protect your LG G5, it definitely is. VRS Design has designed a great looking case here, which has all sorts of protection for your phone. Including protecting it from scratches when you set it down on a table or a desk. Which we all do quite often, and it's nice to see that kind of protection, especially for the camera, since there is a camera bump. All in all, this is my current "go to" case for my LG G5.