In this review, I take a look at the new automatic, variable voltage offering from Vapor4Life.com. V4L has been part of the vaping community for a VERY long time. It was the site I first found success with quitting my pack a day habit. They offer a slew of e-liquids in cartomizers and bottled e-liquid as well as many options for batterys. The Dial-a-volt is one of the newest offerings to meet the demand for longer battery life and better performance. If you check out the video below, you will see what I mean.
The Smileomizer is a new KR808-d style cartomizer that allows you to hold way more e-liquids than a regular cartomizer. The smileomizer can hold 3.5 ML of juice(WHAT!?) and has a screw on tip for easy filling. I have to say, the dial-a-volt with the smileomizer was a hell of a vape. I really did enjoy it. For more information about these products check out the video below or go to Vapor4life!
I recently had the chance to take a look at the newest offering from Innoken, The iTaste SVD! With their great success with the iTaste MVP, the SVD was highly anticipated. At first glance, the device seems like a nice quality mod with stylish metal accents. The telescoping tube was a huge bonus as well. When popping a battery in the tube I was very suprised by how large the device is compared to the devices ive used and seen on the market but dont let the size deter you from giving the SVD a chance. This device performs VERY well. Like the MVP, the SVD is variable voltage but the comparison ends there. The SVD comes packed with an OHM checker, Variable Voltage (3.0v-6.0v in .1 increments), as well as Variable Wattage(3.0w-15.0w in .5 increments). Check out the video below to see a more in depth look at the features as well as lots of other fun tidbits about the device! Make sure you share, like, and subscribe to ECA’s YouTube channel!
The eGo-Twist from Joyetech has been referred to as a “gamechanger” and I couldn’t agree more. The eGo-Twist is, in short, everything a vaping device needs to be without being complicated or expensive.
The eGo-Twist is just like any other eGo battery with the addition of a potentiometer added in the form of a twisting cap on the end of the battery. The device can run between 3.2v and 4.8v which, in my opinion is within the range of what 90% of vapers will desire with any given piece of hardware attached to it.
At right around $23 for the 650mAH (AltSmoke) and $25 for the 1000mAH, anyone with any sort of eGo charger and a 510 atomizer and cartomizer can instantly upgrade their vape to variable voltage. True, this device lacks the features of bigger battery mods with high end control units. You won’t find the battery life, electronic control features and safety protections of a ProVari in this device. But with the lower battery life, these safety warning features aren’t as necessary. Moreover, the eGo-Twist, like all eGos before it, will fail (kill the device for good) when an electrical issue arises. The biggest (and arguably only) real safety events regarding eGo batteries are during charging of the device.
Not to beat the point to death, but the eGo-Twist, while a simple innovation, is remarkable because it combines the most important feature of higher-end mods (variable voltage) with the simplicity, affordability and safety of smaller, intermediate devices like eGo batteries. If you have 20-30 bucks to spare and an eGo charger lying around, GO BUY THIS BATTERY. If you’re just getting into vaping, buying one or two of these batteries and a charger are as good of a value as you will find anywhere. The eGo-Twist is easily one of the best additions a vaper can make to their collection and one of the best places a new vaper can start.
Click here and search for the eGo-Twist (sorry for some reason the direct link to the page isn’t working) at Virgin Vapor (an amazing vendor with great customer service) to save 5% off automatically on your first order. Keep in mind that it applies to all other purchases as well.
The Akston Hughes SL offers the feature set of the SVR with some improvements: one of which is the most advanced safety design currently available.
I first had a chance to try the ProVari Mini during Chicago Vapefest and Vapebash and I have to say I was blown away from the get-go. There have been some people that have said they’d rather opt for the ProVari V2, not because of battery life, but because something this small just isn’t as comfortable. Not I.
For me, having a mod that is almost as short as an eGo battery with variable voltage and every feature imaginable, makes me feel like I am living in the future. Honestly, it shouldn’t be that mind blowing. They shortened the tube so that the mod could work with an 18350 rather than an 18490 or an 18650. Seems simple enough. But in an experiential way, the compact nature of something so advanced makes me feel all warm and fuzzy and of course, downright impressed.
The ProVari Mini has all the same features (the same control unit) as the ProVari V2. This means the Mini is the only unit of this size to have basically every feature and protection you could dream up. In terms of protections, the list is long and reassuring: atomizer short, reverse battery, under volt, over volt, over heat protections and a 16-second cutoff to keep the unit from firing for too long. Like the ProVari, the ProVari Mini is one of the safest mods available and arguably one of the safest e-cigs in general. The control unit also gives you the ability to change voltage up or down, check atomizer ohms, check battery life, power on/off and led on/off from a one button system- simple.
The ProVari Mini has the updated 2.9-6.0 volt range and the 3.5 amp limit, meaning that you can drive low resistance dual coil hardware far over 4 volts, allowing them to truly “come alive” and if desired, give you an insanely intense vape. All of this, safely.
So what about the battery life? Users of the original ProVari or other 18650 VV tube mods might be concerned that an 18350 won’t go the distance in terms of having a non-problematic all-day vape. Not so- the regulator in the ProVari Mini not only allows for a consistent (accurate) voltage that adjusts the output amperage to the hardware you’re using but it does so while making efficient use of the battery. I used this constantly at Vapefest/Vapebash in exactly the manner you would at a vape meet- vaping all the time just because you can. In that kind of trial, the ProVari Mini still gave 3-4 hours of battery life and up to 8 hours in the evening when I wasn’t trying to vape my head off. Of course, carrying an extra 18350 around makes for a quick fix, but the unit alone with a fully charged battery will give much more distance in terms of vape time than is expected, even at higher voltages and with low resistance or dual coil cartomizers/atomizers.
What’s more is that the ProVari Mini takes the same extender cap as the ProVari, meaning if you know for a fact you’ll need a one-charge long distance vape, switching to an 18490 for even more battery life is extremely simple.
And like all other Provape products, the machining and threading on the endcap and 510 connection is immaculate. Even for such a small mod, the Mini feels like it’s made out of something. It’s a bit like the .357 Magnum of mods- surprisingly heavy and equally reliable.
So what can I say in the “negative” about the ProVari Mini? It’s tough to find anything. Maybe you could say it’s too heavy- but that’s a sign of an extremely high build quality and long term durability. Maybe you could say it’s too small and not comfortable. In my opinion, making mods smaller while keeping the same features and performance is the definition of comfortable vaping. You might say the battery life isn’t as long as the original ProVari or other 18650 tube mods- that’s an inherent and obvious tradeoff, one that is easily solved with the addition of the extender cap.
Perhaps the only negative you can find is the price- at around $160 for the unit alone, it’s on the upper tier of mod pricing. But then again, I can’t expect all the best features available, built into one of the smallest mods available at a bargain price. The thought I have is much like that of the original ProVari: the price is high but you should never want for another mod after owning one of these. It’ll be a long time before we see something that has more features and protections in this size and chances are when we do, it’ll be a ProVape product.
I know a good deal of this review reads like a love-letter to ProVape, but I feel it would be wrong to hold back my impression simply because many others have the same impression. Overall, if you have the money, you will get exactly what you pay for here: the best of the best, in a compact size.
Note: The information and lead video in this review have been updated to reflect the changes from the V1 to the V2 Provari.
I was given the daunting task of reviewing the ProVari from ProVape. Initially, as a ProVari owner, I didn’t think it would be that hard, as I have used one for nearly a year. However, in looking over the ProVape website for tech specs, I was blown away at how much this device really does. Most of it, as an end user, you probably won’t even notice, but suffice it to say, ProVape packs a whole lot into this little tube! I will be referring heavily to ProVape’s tech specs which can be found on their website, http://www.provape.com/provari-variable-voltage-ecig-s/36.htm.
First off, what is a ProVari, and what does it do? The ProVari is a variable voltage tube mod that uses 1, 3.7v IMR high drain battery (AW IMR is recommended), and a boost circuit to alter the voltage delivered to your atomizer or cartomizer within a range of 2.9-6.0 volts in 0.1 volt increments. The ProVari incorporates what ProVape calls “AccuSet Technology.” From the Provape website:
“Our built-in dynamic self-calibration algorithm keeps the output voltage accurate to 1% or better over the life of the product. The ProVari will constantly monitor and adjust itself to ensure you always get accurate voltage settings. Every device will auto-tune itself so it’s always precise!”
ProVape also states that the ProVari is a regulated device, meaning that the voltage selected will remain constant, regardless of remaining battery life. For those of us who have used mechanical mods, you know that your 1st hit on a fresh battery is hotter than when you’ve been vaping on that battery for a while. This can lead to a very unsatisfying experience. The ProVari regulates voltage so that your last vape is as good as the first.
In using and testing this device with a voltage meter, I have found ProVape’s claims to be accurate. In layman’s terms, there is no voltage drop between unloaded (no atomizer attached) and loaded (atomizer attached) voltage, as can be found on most other devices. Also, the voltage displayed is the voltage experienced throughout the remaining charge of the battery.
ProVape packs many safety and device monitoring features into this device. Things like the on/off feature, which allows the user to turn the device off preventing misfires while being carried. It has a 16 second cutoff to avoid over heating the device should the button be pressed unaware. It has short circuit/atomizer protection that monitors the load (resistance in Ohms of your atomizer) and can shut the device off if there is a short, thus preventing a catastrophic failure of the device. It has reverse battery protection, meaning the device will only power on if the battery is placed in the device correctly. The ProVari has thermal monitoring; meaning that if the device gets too hot, it will shut off until it cools off in order to protect itself. It has battery monitoring/over discharge protection, giving the user a flashing LED warning when the battery is close to discharged, and shutting the device off when the battery is fully discharged.
The ProVari, with the V2 changes, now features a 3.5 amp limit. What does this mean? The ProVari can now run low resistance and dual coil cartomizers at much higher voltages than before. Namely, the popular 1.5ohm dual coil cartomizer can now be ran all the way up the 5 volts and other single coil or higher resistance cartomizers/atomizers can of course be ran even higher. This means that your dual coil cartomizers can truly come to life, as they are often thought to, when pushed above ~4 volts. This update to a 3.5 amp limit basically eliminates the one flaw that some have found in the past with the ProVari and keeps it on top as solidly one of the best devices available.
The user interface of the ProVari is a solitary button, and a 2 digit display. To access the menu system, the user must press the button several times in rapid succession to get to the menu option they wish to adjust.
Press 5 times for Power Up (Pu)
-Increases voltage in 0.1v increments
Press 7 times for Power Down (Pd)
-Decreases voltage in 0.1v increments
Press 9 times for Power On/Off (Po)
-Turns the device on and off
Press 11 times for Check Battery (Cb)
-Check remaining battery level in volts
Press 13 times for Atomizer Ohms (Ao)
-Check the resistance of your atomizer or cartomizer in Ohms
Press 15 times to LED button On/Off (Lo)
-Toggle the lighted LED button between full, dim, and off
Options and pricing: ProVape offers an a-la-carte style of ordering their mod. You select the options you want, and add them each individually to your cart.
For the ProVari (mod only), the satin finish is $159.95, $179.95 for chrome or satin black, and $299.95 for 24k gold. The extension cap (to allow use of an 18650 battery) is $19.95 for the satin finish, and $23.95 for the chrome and black finishes. 1 18500 AW IMR 1100 mAh battery is $11.00, and 1 18650 AW IMR 2000 mAh battery is $12.95. A Tenergy charger is $16.95, or you can upgrade to a Pila 4 stage charger for $45.00. The device comes with a 1 year warranty, but a 2 year warranty can be purchased for $24.95.
If a starter kit is more to your liking, they offer one which includes a satin ProVari, 2 18500 AW IMR batteries, 1 Tenergy charger, a 5 pack of 3 Ohm cartomizers, and a metal drip tip for $211.95.
Packaging and presentation leave a little to be desired. This was my first big mod purchase, and it came wrapped in bubble wrap, packed in a USPS small flat rate box. I guess just I expected more. Don’t get me wrong, it was well packed, and arrived unscathed, but just not in a pretty box. I have since noticed that many big mod makers ship their products this way.
My initial impression is that the ProVari was somewhat large, and seemed very heavy compared to what I was used to. It is made of stainless steel, and feels very solid. Adding the extension cap and larger battery increases the heft and size of this device. After a while though, I got used to it, and actually learned to appreciate the stoutness of it.
The menu system, on its face, seemed daunting, but literally after five minutes of using the ProVari, it became second nature. I also noticed that once I found the preferred voltage for a particular cartomizer and juice, I didn’t need to fiddle with it anymore. I really love the regulated voltage. My 1st vape tastes the same as my last vape regardless of the battery status.
The native 510 connection is integrated in to the cap, and is well machined, and has never failed to fire due to a connection problem. There is a nice drip well around it to catch any juice for the messy dripper.
Both the standard and extended end caps are well machined, and the threading was tight, quiet, and smooth.
Battery life leaves a little to be desired. the 18500 battery gives me about 5-6 hours vape time, and the 18650 gives me 7-8 hours vape time. Depending on how much you vape, you may have different results.
And now with the addition of a 3.5 amp limit, dual coils can be safely and effectively run at higher voltages, providing the seriously powerful vape that some users demand.
My final thoughts on this device are quite positive despite the fact that it is quite expensive. I really like variable voltage. I love the fact that it is regulated voltage. The heft and size don’t bother me. After almost a year of using the ProVari, I have never once had an issue with it. With the amp limit now raised, it’s tough to find anything wrong with the ProVari, no matter what kind of hardware you like to use.
I would rate the ProVari 5/5
Overall: Apollo has offered a vast improvement over previous designs of this product: a solid, heavy build with the addition of an eGo connection and a floating connector pin are the biggest standouts for this mod. All in all, an extremely high quality build brought to a design often criticized for a lack thereof.
While hanging out with a bunch of awesome vapor peeps at the Atlanta Vape Meet, I perused the vendor tables and came across this nifty little device from Clouds Of Vapor. It is called the SD Keyring. It came packaged like something you would see in the checkout line at Wal-Mart hanging on a rack with a bunch of other nick knacks. The kit came with a very small battery with keyring lanyard (hence the name), a USB charger, and 2 blank cartomizers. I had heard of these, and it was only $20, so I thought “what the heck, why not.”
So what is it? The battery is a satin brushed stainless steel auto 300 mAh with a recessed 510 connection. It measures a mere 44 mm in length (just a shade longer than a standard resistance cartomizer), and is about the same circumference as an eGo battery. The supplied cartomizers came blank (unfilled) and resistance was 3.1Ω in one, and 3.3Ω in the other. The charger is quite small with a USB connection on one end and a 510 connection on the other. It has an LED indicator that is red when charging and turns green when the unit is fully charged.
Cost: From the Clouds Of Vapor website, the device costs $21.99. The device is sold at other retailers as well, including electronicstix.com for $19.95, ivapour.co.uk, £12.95, and liberty-flights.co.uk for £14.49 (the US LF site doesn’t seem to stock them for some reason). Click the button at the top left of the screen for a 20% off discount at checkout if ordering anything from Liberty Flights.
Impressions: First off, it’s tiny! I can easily fit this device in the palm of my hand and stealth vape easily. It seems very well made, and being brushed stainless steel, it looks nice. I initially tried vaping it with the included cartomizers and wasn’t very impressed. I have never been a fan of standard resistance cartos on a 3.7v device. Vapor was weak, flavor was okay but not great, I really had to work to get anything out of it.
I then filled a Boge 2.0Ω low resistance cartomizer, and tried that. Bingo! Great flavor, awesome vapor, and good throat hit. I was really surprised something this small, could satisfy my vape cravings. Long story short, I like it!
The only downsides, I can really see is that due to it’s size, the battery doesn’t last all that long (especially with the LR carto on it). I wish I had bought 2 of them so I could charge one battery while using the other. Also, being an auto battery, dripping with an atomizer is out. Lastly, charging the battery can only be accomplished via USB. I found that the iPhone USB wall plug works well in a pinch though.
In summary, I wouldn’t make this my main vape, however, it is very satisfying. I think it would be best served in an environment where stealth is important, or if you are going out on a quick trip somewhere and don’t want to lug a big MOD around. I wish I had an extra battery so as to always have one ready to go. Especially for the price, it’s a solid performer. I just wish it would hurry up and charge already!
This review is going to sound very similar to my last review of the Buzz Pro, in that internally, they are the same device. The differences lie in price and appearance. That being said, my opening salvo is the same as in my previous review of the Buzz. Normally I hate to cut and paste, but in this case, I’d hate to type it all out again even more.
I must first preface my review with a disclaimer. I am a huge NotCigs fan. There, I said it, I am biased. Hopefully though, after reading this review, you will understand why I am a fervent fanboi of all things Buzz.
I would like to start this review off with a little history lesson. I actually spoke (via email) with Mike Buzzetti, the owner of NotCigs, who right now is a very busy man with the recent release of their new VVProV, and the development of their next mod sure to rock the vaping world (hopefully soon). Specifically, I wanted to know if the rumor’s that I have heard all my vaping life were true. Is he the inventor of the variable voltage mod? You know how people are, and vaper’s are no different, people talk, embellish, make things up,and sometimes flat out lie; and urban legends are born of this. Given his heavy workload, his answer was surprisingly lengthy and informative. In a nutshell, Mike stated that he first started vaping on a standard 901 kit, and shortly after purchased a mod that was supposed to be variable voltage but didn’t work as advertised. He didn’t name the mod, but he decided, instead, to create a real variable voltage ecig. Using his background in electronics and mechanical engineering, he created the original Buzz in December of 2009 and applied for a provisional patent before it’s release. The original Buzz used a linear voltage regulator to control the output voltage, NotCigs then released the Infinity eight months later using the same basic design. Improvements in the efficiency of the chip culminated in the Buzz Pro in January of 2011, followed by the Infinity Pro soon after that. Just this month, NotCigs released the VVProV; the only top feeding VV device with the juice housed inside the body.
So what is the Infinity Pro? It is a variable voltage tube mod that uses 2 protected Li-Ion 14430 3.7v 650mAh batteries in series, and uses a “buck” circuit to limit voltage via an analog linear potentiometer within a range of 3.3 to 5.6 volts. Unlike other mods, which boast menu systems, LED readouts, and multiple button presses; the user interface on the Infinity Pro is amazingly simple. There is a fire button, and an adjustment wheel, aka the “Hit Control.” That’s it!
Built in protection is standard on all NotCigs products, and includes over current, over temp, and reverse battery protections. There is ample venting provided, should a catastrophic battery meltdown occur.
The Infinity Pro comes in 5 colors (black, chrome, silver, purple, and blue). The top and bottom caps come in either brass or chrome, and can be configured with either a 510, 801, 901, or 808 native connection. The tops can be swapped out relatively easily if you decide to change colors, or native connections. The bottom cap now comes with Delrin threads so that a quarter turn of the cap breaks the connection, acting as a switch, turning the device off. Extra top and bottom caps can be ordered individually from NotCigs.
The Infinity Pro itself costs $99.95. The 14430 batteries are $8.00/pair, and a battery/charger combo is $20.00. Laser engraving (Your logo or text) costs an extra $30 (the Infinity Pro logo and S/N are standard at no additional cost, only extra engraving costs more). Use coupon code “ECF Buzzkill” for 7.5% off your order, and returning NotCigs customers get an additional 5% off as well.
The Infinity Pro came in a USPS small flat rate box, well padded in bubble wrap, with all accessories, and instructions included. As is customary with many high end US mod makers, there was no official fancy logo embossed box, which I assume is an effort to keep costs down.
I ordered my Infinity Pro in blue with extra engraving, as I am a huge University of Kentucky Wildcats basketball fan, I had Mike laser engrave a UK logo on it for me, along with the standard Infinity Pro logo and serial number. I designed a banner logo, and saved it as a *.bmp file as instructed. After several emails back and forth, with little tweaks here and there, Mike said he could do it. The engraving is superb, and artfully done. The body is well machined, the anodizing is perfect, no dings or scratches in the finish, the end caps fit flush, and the threading is nice, tight, and quiet. The Infinity Pro is significantly thinner than the Buzz Pro (the Ipro is more like an eGo in width), and is also a little longer. Kind of like the tall and lean little sister to it’s short and squat big brother, the Buzz.
I was initially unsure about the delrin threads on the end cap, holding up against the metal threads of the body. It seems to me that plastic v. metal in a moving part could cause premature wear. Time will tell, although, I haven’t heard any reports of this being an issue.
The “Hit Control” is marked with three color hash-marks; green, yellow, and red. The dial moves easily but is not loose. The Activate button is a little small for my preference, rubbery, and clicky. It sits in a recessed area on the main body which helps eliminate misfires while pocketed.
The device itself is very light, and appears to be made out of aluminum. It fits well in the hand, the finish is satin (not gloss like the Buzz Pro), and is not slippery.
There is a red LED light located just inside the “Hit Control” dial area that lets you know the device is on. The LED turns blue when the button is pressed to let you know it’s firing.
After a little voltage testing, I found the the green hash-mark was 3.3 volts, the yellow was 4.5 volts, and the red was 5.2 volts. The “Hit Control” proceeded past the red up until 5.6 volts. Under load (with a 2.8 ohm cartomizer attached) there was a 0.1v drop across all voltages and was to be expected. The voltage regulator held the voltage constant all the way up until the batteries were almost completely dead. I consistently get 10-12 hours of good vape time out of this device on a single set of batteries. I expected this as the internals are the same as the Buzz Pro, just with smaller batteries.
The Infinity Pro, from a user standpoint, is a simple device that works as advertised. It is reliable and easy to use. It is just slightly more expensive than some Chinese made variable voltage devices on the market, and less expensive than the Buzz Pro and other US made devices. It is extremely well put together and durable. If you choose to get yours engraved, the workmanship is flawless. In my personal opinion, you can’t go wrong with this one!
Overall, I give it a 5/5