I have a little secret.
First, understand that I get to try a lot of new vape devices.
We constantly have new products passing through the office, and I get to try a lot of them.
But, like a comfortable pair of shoes, I still find myself going back to the same products again and again.
A personal favourite is the tried and tested Aspire Nautilus Mini, often paired with a Coolfire IV.
Admittedly, this is old technology. Very often if I go to a conference, forum or trade show I’ll make sure to take the latest devices with me – only to revert back to the Nautilus on my journey home!
I’m not the only one. These still fly out from our website and stores, and I was surprised at one conference to even see a big tobacco rep puffing away on an Aspire Nautilus … instead of one of his company’s own vape products!
The fact of the matter is: some vintage vape gear simply stands the test of time. So in honour of those who are not slaves to the latest trends, here’s a selection of devices that have stuck around, despite an endless stream of new vape kits.
When a Mi-Pod originally landed on my desk, with it’s untraditional shape and elvish writing on the side, I worried it would be a passing gimmick. But as one of the first examples of these, now ubiquitous, all-in-one pod devices it has become something of a modern classic.
It’s seriously tiny, almost disappearing into the palm of your hand, yet still offers a decent kick. Being refillable it’s happy being used with a wide variety of juices, and the sheer number of people still rocking a Mi-Pod at vape events is testament to their enduring popularity.
There is no doubt the frequently updated choice of finishes has helped keep the Mi-Pod fresh compared to other devices in this post, but there are signs they could be difficult to get hold of in the UK before long. If anything this is sure to make fans cherish their Mi-Pod even more.
While I’m writing this, I’m vaping an Aspire PockeX. These classic pen style kits may be getting old in the context of the fast moving vape market – but they remain one of the most popular devices we sell in our shops. Much imitated yet, arguably, never bettered.
Often presented as a starter kit thanks to its simplicity, the PockeX sits at a sweet spot between power and portability giving it wide appeal, and as such has found favour with a lot of established vapers too.
It’s a solidly built compact device, super reliable, and gives a really great throat hit. The signature ‘pop’ the PockeX gives when you first use it certainly adds to its charm.
As die-hard fans will attest, one annoyance is the tank can crack quite easily, so if you do get one consider using a vape band around the tank for a bit of extra protection!
The Aspire Nautilus Mini (often used with an Innokin Coolfire IV)
The Aspire Nautilus Mini has been going for years and years. In fact, I have a feeling Aspire might even be a little embarrassed about it, seeing as they keep bringing out new versions of the Nautilus – but nothing seems to dent the popularity of the original. Demonstrated by the fact that new vape tanks (and even pod systems) are now frequently designed to fit the original Nautilus coils.
It’s very often hard to put your finger on why something remains popular. But as a Nautilus user, I love the cold metal of the Nautilus and the Coolfire. Perhaps it’s my imagination, but it seems to deliver a cooler vape which goes particularly well with menthol juice.
The Humble Cigalike
We’ve been selling cigalikes since 2008 – and they still fly out. Sure, the performance has come a long way, but the design is pretty much the same.
Now, not many people start with cigalikes these days, but many people who started with them (some more than a decade ago) have had every opportunity to try new devices – but still stick to their cigalike.
They are super easy to use, incredibly light, and look just like a cigarette, making it an ideal choice for people who miss the look and feel of smoking.
It has been a long time since I used one of these slim plastic CE5 tanks. But they remain incredibly popular, and many people still swear by them.
I’ve no doubt this is due to familiarity, plus the fact that they are easy and affordable to replace.
A nicer and still popular alternative is the Aspire BVC ETS tank. Coming with a metal design, this is a bit more solid than the plastic CE5 and looks pretty smart.
Reviewers Own Trusty Devices
Constantly putting the latest technology through rigorous testing, we reached out to some reviewers and found that, unsurprisingly, they often have an old favourite to hand too …
V-Mod – by Jim, Vaping360
I still do about half of my vaping on a flimsy plastic-and-aluminum mech squonker called the VMod. In fact, I love this 2010-vintage vape so much that when the manufacturer (Vapage) blew out the remaining inventory, I bought 15 of the mods, and 150 beautiful — and delicious! — Vapage 510 atomizers.
I get about four months from each atty (it would be less if I vaped them exclusively), and the mods usually last a year or more with cautious handling, so at age 59 I think I’m set for a lifetime of perfect 10-watt MTL vaping. When other vapers see my old school mod wrapped with electrical tape to prevent slips, they usually laugh. But I’m a happy man.
Blue Eleaf Istick TC40 – by Toby, E-Juice Review
An older vape that I often still grab is my Blue Eleaf Istick TC40. This was my first box mod and holds big sentimental value to me. Despite owning a stack of different devices since then, this is something I regularly pick up and vape on. The internal battery is still going strong and charges fine, although the display light is no longer as bright as it was back in 2015.
This device is mostly paired up with the tank I bought back at the same time; the Aspire Nautilus Mini. A great tank that has lasted well and I know I am not the only vaper that still uses it today. The coils last well with good flavour, and it is pretty unbeatable for a very decent mouth to lung vape.
If both this mod and tank broke tomorrow, I’d definitely find another to buy.
Handmade Mod – by Mark, Soul Ohm Reviews
My favourite old vape? Well that has to be my punchbox unregulated parallel handmade box mod made by True Mods.
Tony from True Mods made me this back in 2015 and I still love it to bits. Not just because a friend made me the Mod but because its very simple and basic, with no wattage adjustment, no menu, no screen, no silly temp control – just straight power from two 18650`s batteries, Fat Daddy 510 on top, miTEC switch and a Mosfet.
A very simple box mod which has never let me down.
Aspire Cleito – by Jonny, E-Cig Click
Despite being regularly told (even 2 years ago) that I needed to ‘get a better tank’ I’ve found myself repeatedly going back to the original Aspire Cleito tank, despite actually using better performers. Yeah, maybe I need my head testing, but I just know what I’m getting, I know how much e-liquid it goes through and it’s rarely skipped a beat.
This would often be sat on top of a battered looking CoolFire 4 TC100 which is actually still holding up well despite its tatty appearance.
I finally (talking a few weeks ago) made the switch… to the Cleito Pro! ha… I’m a creature of habit… Or maybe because I can’t bear to see the box full of Cleito coils I’ve amassed over the years gathering dust. I’m sure this will also be classed as an old favourite soon as well.
What else will last?
Vaping mods come and go, but there are always a handful which will stand the test of time, gaining a fan base at the same time. And one of the distinguishing factors with all these devices is that they are simple and easy to use – but delivering a consistently quality vape.
So perhaps the lesson for manufacturers and suppliers is don’t worry too much about fancy features – just focus on what really matters. And for most of us, that’s flavour and vapour.
Have you got a favourite old vape device, mod or otherwise, that has stood the test of time? Do let us know in the comments!