Electronic cigarettes are available in a broad range of styles͵ sizes͵ and configurations designed to accommodate the vaporising needs and preferences of every user. If you’ve never purchased an e-cig setup before it can be kind of overwhelming choosing from the many types without any guidance.
While there are literally hundreds of different brands and models to choose from͵ all e-cigs typically fall into one of three main categories – mini͵ mid, and mod. Below we’ll take a look at the key features of and differences between these types of e-cigs to help you make the most informed decision possible:
Mini e-cigs are often referred to as cig-a-likes because of their strong resemblance to tobacco cigarettes. For this reason they are usually the e-cig of choice for people who are trying to quit or supplement their smoking with a replacement that looks and acts a lot like a real cigarette. Minis are lightweight͵ easy to use͵ and are widely available in most stores in the disposable and rechargeable form.
Practically every e-cig manufacturer offers some sort of mini͵ as this is easily the most popular type on the market. In fact most people who switch to vaporising nicotine will use or have already used a mini/cig-a-like at some point.
While there are hundreds of brands that make minis in different styles͵ they all conform to model numbers that indicate the size and threading of the device͵ so you can mix and match cartridges and other components from various manufacturers as long as the model number/series match. Of course that doesn’t mean that every mini e-cig is the same regardless of brand͵ as there are noticeable differences between a quality setup and a cheap one.
Although many manufacturers try to market their e-cigs as unique͵ proprietary models͵ the fact is that they all conform to a series number͵ which is a good thing because it lets you mix components from various brands.
The most popular mini e-cig look-a-likes are the KR808 and 501 series. The KR808 is widely regarded as the best low-cost͵ low-hassle mini series on the market͵ which is why it is used by many major brands like Green Smoke and V2. The two-piece KR808 also comes in two thread variations – D1 and D2. The 501 series is a three-piece setup͵ making it a bit more flexible as far as component options but also making it a bit more of a hassle to assemble and disassemble.
While it is possible to take a KR808 cartridge from one company and stick it in a KR808 mini from another company͵ most people order their entire setup from one brand for simplicity’s sake.
Let’s look at some of the pros and cons of minis:
- Provides the easiest transition for smokers because they look more like an actual cigarette than other e-cig types.
- Discreet and inconspicuous option for vapers that don’t want to stand out
- Lightweight and small – same size as a regular cigarette
- The most affordable way to transition into e-cigs
- Optimal e-cig type for light to moderate smokers
- Two-piece configuration offers limited upgrade options
- Relatively short battery life – requires frequent charging
- May not be the preferred e-cig experience for heavy smokers or those who prefer full flavour cigarettes
Vape Pen eGo
More advanced users tend to prefer mid-sized e-cigs͵ which are typically the size of a cigar. Mids have a longer battery life and produce more vapour than minis. Heavy smokers usually skip the minis and transition straight to the mid-sized vape pens instead͵ as you’re able to get a thicker vapour and higher nicotine dose than you would with a mini.
The most popular mid-sized models are the eGo͵ kGo͵ and EVOD. Most of them conform to the three-piece 510 series͵ although there are some two-piece vape pens available as well.
While minis are available in automatic and manual configurations͵ most mid-sized vape pens are manual͵ which means you have to press a button to start the vaporisation process. While this may take away from the more natural feeling of activating the vapour by inhaling (as is the case in automatic minis)͵ the manual button-press method allows for more control over vapour production and it enhances the vape pen’s performance in the long-term.
The most popular type of vape pens is the eGo variety͵ which is offered by a number of different major brands like Volcano͵ Vapor Fi͵ Apollo͵ and Halo.
Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of mid-sized vape pens:
- Longer battery life and more vapour production than minis
- Medium size is not too big or too small – about the size of a cigar
- The 510 series models offer flexible upgrade options
- Produces enough vapour to satisfy most heavy/full-flavored smokers
- Larger than a conventional cigarette
- Requires a manual button press to activate vaporisation
- Vaporisation is not as customisable
Mods or Advanced Personal Vaporisers (APVs)
Mods͵ also referred to as advanced personal vaporisers͵ offer the pinnacle of the e-cig experience. Mods are typically available in two types – the tube mod (which looks like a small flashlight) and the box mod (which is about the size of a pack of cigarettes).
Unlike minis and vape pens͵ which come with built-in battery packs͵ mods come with replaceable 3.7 volt lithium ion batteries.
Mods also come with a variety of advanced functions and features like variable voltage͵ integral liquid feed͵ full electronic vapour control͵ and varying tank styles. These features give the APVs a significant performance edge over their mini and mid-sized counterparts.
However͵ because of their complexity mods are typically avoided by novice e-cig users͵ who usually have no use for the plethora of advanced features.
Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of mods/APVs:
- Longest battery life – 3.7 volt lithium ion
- Produces up to 3 times more vapour than a mini
- Advanced features allow for full customisation
- Can satisfy the heaviest smokers
- Most durable and sturdy type of vaporiser
- Requires manual operation
- Most expensive type
- Lithium ion battery cells last longer but are more difficult to maintain
So, as you can see there is a type of vaping device for literally everyone no matter what their preference. It is fun to be able to experiment with different flavours, some of which you can always find on this website. With all the different types of vaporisers out there, you are sure to find one that is just right for you.