I was pretty excited to see this device while trawling through madvape’s website, fellow babies — for one main reason. And when the order arrived, I was excited to have them for a number of reasons. So let’s kick the tires, as it were, and take a look at the Smoktech ARO Pyrex BCC, shall we?
Yes, as you can see from the picture, this is a Kanger T3 form-factor BCC; and as some of you know, I was an early-adopter of the T3 and have continued to use them to this day along with the myriad other toppers I’ve acquired in this 2 1/2 years of vaping. The main reason I did not hesitate to order some of these is simple. Pyrex! In a T3 form factor! Did I mention Pyrex?
I used (notice the past tense action, there, fellow babies) T3s for those times when hauling a bunch of Phoenix drippers and bottles of juice (or even Genesis-type atties) around is simply out of the question. I never enjoyed the time I spent using cartos for the most part (or those nasty CE clearos) for many reasons. So when the T3 appeared, it was the perfect tool for the job…the job being to deliver a convenient vape that holds a lot of juice that doesn’t leak while driving, walking, being busy at work, whatever. Sadly, until now, that meant not being able to use certain juices in those circumstances because of etching, cracking or melting. Not anymore, fellow babies. Did I tell you about the Pyrex?
So how does this thing compare to the latest iteration of the Kanger T3/M3? To my surprise, it compares very well…in fact, in some aspects, the Smoktech ARO outshines the Kanger. Since I compared the new T3 heads with the heads from the ARO (almost identical with extremely minor variation), the most glaring difference to me is probably the main reason: the ARO coil and wick seems to be built way better than the Kanger counterparts. They seem to use a 3mm wick instead of 2 or 2.5, and on the standard res head (2.4 ohm), I saw a perfect 9 wrap coil with closely-spaced wraps, complete with no-res legs leading right to the wick. Maximum heat to the coil where it needs to be. It sports the same pair of 1 mm filler wicks otherwise. On the Kanger T3 head I’m looking at that measures 2.5 ohm, I see a 6 wrap of much thinner wire with no-res wire that doesn’t go all the way up to the (thinner) wick. Of course, I believe I mentioned the Pyrex tank, correct?
At this moment I’m vaping a 40/60 pg/vg DIY juice that isn’t easy for the Kanger T3 to deal with. In the T3, I can only get away with vaping this sauce at 7.5 watts (with a primer puff every couple of toots) because the wicks can’t keep up if I go much higher, resulting in dry hits. No such issue with the ARO; I’m vaping this at 8.5 watts and have yet to get a dry hit. I went so far as to jack it up to 10 watts and was able to pull 3 consecutive back to back toots before getting a skanky dry hit. The stock T3, as much as I like it, simply can’t deliver such action. Vapor production is great for a BCC device and flavor is a noticable, if not drastic, step up from the Kanger. The draw is airy — similar to the T3 — and so far, after one tank I’ve encountered no gurgles ot leaks. Like the T3, it holds about 2.5 ml and you have no option of using your own mouthpiece, but that doesn’t bother me in the least, especially since, in case I forgot to mention, it’s a T3 form-factor with Pyrex. The mouthpiece is, in fact, a metal chrome-plated job that is actually quite comfortable.
Wrap-up: the ARO rocks, fellow babies — nice clouds and tasty vape-age, plain and simple. I ran another ARO with 70/30 PG/VG at 9 watts without ever getting a dry hit the entire tank. As far as the physics of how these BCC devices work, (negative pressure keeping the juice from running out the bottom) you will likely encounter the occasional bit of bottom leakage & gurgling if going from a very cool room to the hot out-of-doors or if you let the juice level get below about the 1/5 mark or so, just like the Kangers. For me, though, the fact I finally have a T3 style device with a Pyrex tank is awesome. The somewhat better performance is just icing on the cake. Get yourself a few of these bad boys and forget about tank-cracking forever. $7.99 at madvapes; replacement heads are $1.49 each. Note there are two versions of the ARO; one is Pyrex, one is not. Make sure you order the correct one and rock on, citizens!