iPad Air

LifeProof Nuud iPad Air Review

An iPad Air case that is waterproof and shockproof without a screen protector? We’re serious, it exists!


The LifeProof Nuud for the iPad Air is one of the very few cases that offers complete water and shock protection for your iPad Air and it does all of this without the use of a screen protector. Like all Nuud cases, you can keep the eau-natural feeling of the touchscreen while keeping the iPad Air safe.

In our LifeProof Nuud iPad Air review, we gave this case a score of 4.2 Eh’s out of 5. The best part of this case is the exceptional access to your iPad Air with the case installed. The worst part of this case is that it has no screen protection and will have a higher chance, in our opinion, of failing.

Watch the COMPREHENSIVE LifeProof Nuud iPad Air review video


LifeProof
Nuud


“4.2


(out of 5)



Full Review
Video Playlist
  • Price:

    $129.99

  • Pros:

    - Allows for exceptional access to your iPad Air's touch screen
    - Easy to un-install
    - Feels solid

  • Cons:

    - Little screen protection. The case only provides 1/4 inch of clearance
    - 3rd party screen protectors can be installed at the owner's risk
    -REALLY expensive

  • Potential Problems:

    - Extra o-rings on the LifeProof Nuud will increase the chance that debris may enter the case rendering it not-waterproof
    - No built-in screen protector means that the iPad still might suffer a shattered screen if dropped face first

  • DESIGN

  • Weight/Bulk (4/5):

    - The LifeProof Nuud is one of the thinner rugged iPad Air cases. Same thickness as the Fre
    - Lighter than the Fre
    - Seems less bulky than the LifeProof Fre because of the lack of screen protector

  • Ease of installation (4/5):

    - Easy to install
    - LifeProof Nuud is even easier to uninstall, due to the lack of screen protector
    - Case comprises of 2 parts, taken apart by peeling back the rear panel at the bottom of the case
    -LifeProof has included an un-installation tool that will pro-long the life of the case

  • Build Quality (5/5):

    - Case feels very solid despite having no screen protector
    - Good mix of rubber and polycarbonate makes the case easy to use

  • PROTECTION

  • Shock Protection (4/5):

    - Provides shock protection up to 4 ft/1.2m
    - Successfully tested by dropping the LifeProof Nuud repeatedly in a parking lot

  • Water Protection (4/5):

    - LifeProof Nuud provides water protection up to depths of 6.6 ft for 1 hour
    - Successfully tested by dropping the iPad case in a river

  • Screen Protection (2/5):

    - No screen protector though LifeProof does NOT include an installable screen protector for the Nuud (unlike the Nuud for the iPhone 5S)

  • FUNCTIONALITY

  • iPad Air Functionality (4.5/5):

    - LifeProof Nuud provides easy access to all buttons
    - Sound coming from speakers is enhanced
    - Easy access to hardware ports
    - Larger headphone plugs can be used easily with the LifeProof Nuud

  • Screen Usability (5/5):

    - Easy to access swipe menus
    - Edges of the case do not interfere with the iPad Air's touchscreen
    - Since the LifeProof Nuud doesn't have a screen protector, it offers the same screen usability as a naked iPad

  • Screen Viewability (5/5):

    - No rain-bowing effects
    - No additional glare
    - Fingerprint smudging kept to a minimum

Design - A very functional, well designed case
In terms of design, the Lifeproof Nuud is only 10mm thick weights only 208 g which doesn’t seem like much but it will double the thickness of your iPad as well as adding approx. 40% more weight. The entire case will add an extra 3/8 inch around the entire iPad.

Installing the case is fairly straightforward. Put the iPad Air into the back panel and snap the case together. Taking the case apart now is a breeze, especially with the unintsall tool that LifeProof includes. Pop it in one of the corners and turn. This tool, as simple as it is, makes a world of difference.

I’m always very surprised at how solid LifeProof cases are. Even the cheapest feeling LifeProof cases are quite tough and we know this because we’ve torn them down and stabbed them with kitchen knives. The Nuud is no different. The iPad case fits well together, there isn’t a single part of the case that I’m uncomfortable with in terms of build quality and subsequently, the level of protection it will provide.


Protection - The lack of a screen protector might be a deal breaker

The lifeProof Nuud for the iPad Air is waterproof up to 6.6 ft for 1 hour and shockproof up to 4 ft and based on our tests, we have no reason to believe other wise. The case is made waterproof by the o-rings that run along the inside of the back panel as well as an o-ring that is glued to the front panel of the case. The headphone jack is made waterproof by a plug and the lightning port connector is covered by an orange gasket.

In terms of screen protection, well, there isn’t any. The main selling point of this case is that there is no screen protector so by default, it’s going to suffer from really bad screen protection. Now the only saving grace about the screen protection is that there is approx. 1/4 inch of clearance between the edge of the case and the iPad Air’s touchscreen.

LifeProof doesn’t include a screen protector for you to install, unlike the LifeProof Nuud for the iPhone 5S and you’d think they would given that this is a $130 dollar case. When you’re paying for a premium product, you’d think they’d throw in a few extras.

When it comes to installing a screen protector, there’s two lines of thought here. The first is that you can take it and install on the front without cutting it to fit as the case will snap together.

The second option, and that’s only if you wanted to ensure that the case stays waterproof and shockproof with a screen protector, I recommend cutting it to fit and that requires a bit of effort. If you are doing this, make sure that you cut the screen protector to fit around the home button. You don’t want to have anything between the case and the touchscreen or else it’s not going to be waterproof.


Functionality - Nothing like that au natural feeling of glass
The functionality that the LifeProof Nuud for the iPad Air is exceptional but that’s to be expected since there’s no screen protector. There is nothing impeding accessing the buttons on your iPad, the hole for the Lightning port connector is large enough to accommodate 3rd party connectors and it’s the same for the hole at the top for the headphones. The sound coming from the iPad Air isn’t muted and the pictures taken by the iPad Air are generally pretty clear and the pictures through the optical glass doesn’t distort any of the photos

Screen Usability and Viewability are top notch. Again there, isn’t any screen protector so you’re touching the actual iPad screen. The front of the case is far enough from the touchable area that you’re not going to have any problem accessing the edges of the touch screen.


Click here for a comparison between the LifeProof Fre and the LifeProof Nuud case for the iPad Air? We’ve got you covered!

3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. Alex Spear

    April 4, 2015 at 9:35 pm

    Thanks for your review of the Lifeproof iPad air cases. I think I will purchase the “Nuud”, but was wondering why the big price difference between the black one ($196) and the white/grey one at $69 on Amazon… Are the cases identical?

    Thanks….Alex

    • Aaron Ho

      April 6, 2015 at 4:42 pm

      Good question…I have no idea why there would be a price differential.

  2. Lorrie

    February 10, 2016 at 12:37 am

    I told my kids we’d play after I found what I nedede. Damnit.

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