AOKP and call it a day. It’s mostly vanilla android but with some additional features baked in. Visually you can’t even tell the difference mostly.
I’m having great battery life (24 hours or so on light to medium use) and I love the additional features, like being able to control whether or not date shows up on the status bar, and configuring the drop down settings.
I love the design and the hardware from what I can tell on their site, but if they’re all about updates, why are they releasing it with Jelly Bean 4.1 instead of 4.2? FYI, a lot of phones out there for 4.1 are affected by these battery killing bugs specific to 4.1, but fixed in 4.2 apparently: