Biting the Hand that Feeds Me – Enough with the Sub Ohm Tanks

I have been reviewing vaping products for a long time now.  I’ve seen the industry grow and innovate at a jaw-dropping pace. We’ve gone from anemic e-cigarette and eGo devices to crazy-powerful advanced personal vaporizers.  And let’s not forget about sub ohm tanks: bringing the sort of performance previously only available to those willing to tinker and build their own stuff.

I am so sick of sub ohm tanks, I stopped in the middle of writing a review for one so that I could instead write this article complaining about the glut.

It’s been great seeing so much consumer choice.  Choice leads to innovation.  That’s why there’s so many awesome smart phones and why US consumers still have shitty internet.

But, there’s also a point where the market becomes saturated to the point of becoming irrelevant. Are you old enough to remember the Atari 2600? Its downfall was the glut of terrible games made by third parties.

It’s not an exact analogy since there’s no singular platform for vaping, but the sub ohm category is beginning to feel the same way.  Every week it seems like somebody has a new something else killer. Someone recently asked me what tank I was using and I had no damn idea.

I realize I’m starting to sound like a cranky old man at this point.  You kids and your rock ‘n roll, new math and new-fangled sub ohm tanks.  But seriously, how much more innovation can anyone squeeze out of a low-resistance coil with some cotton around it?

A lot of this is driven by the manufacturers simply trying to hop on to a popular trend.  If there wasn’t consumer demand, they wouldn’t build the stuff. Still, there has to be someone in an R&D department coming up with something new. It seems like development effort might be better spent coming up with new ways to do things.

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Yes, of course someone will come up with a new and novel concept.  It’s happened countless times before.  Once someone comes out with something cool, the manufacturers will all switch to making knockoffs and derivatives of those products.

Once that happens, I can start writing articles like “whatever happened to sub ohm tanks?” That’s just how quick everyone turns in this industry.  That constant demand for something better does result in the next sub ohm killer tank, but it’s also what brought us things like variable voltage and refillable cartomizers in the first place.

In other words, ignore everything I just said, I’ll be busy writing my review of yet another sub ohm tank.

Steve K

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17 Comments

  • Come on Steve, tell us which are the three best subohm tanks.

  • Hi Steve, I live in England and have a small vaping business.

    My business doesn’t follow the normal retail model. I charge a weekly amount to supply my clients with the equipment and juice for their needs. The closest analogy I can think of is mobile networks, where they supply the phone and a system to use it on.

    This is my own innovation.

    I’m in the business of turning smokers into vapers and hopefully turning a profit on the way. First I find a smoker then I sell them the dream.

    It’s healthier, cheaper and tastes so much better than burning leaves. Why suffer tobacco when you can have juice.

    There is no place in my business for sub ohm tanks or 100 watt plus mods.

    I’ve been vaping for nealy a year and the lowest resistance I’ve used myself is 1.5 ohms. I have an MVP2 that is usually set to around 8 or 9 watts.

    May be I’m just not the adventurous type.

    What I’d like to see is a more artistic approach to tank design or an all in one unit, a one piece tank and power unit. Now that really would be an innovation.

    • You’re what’s called a tootle puffer – someone who likes what they’ve got and couldn’t care less about the fashions. Rock on tommy.

  • lol…crazy old man

  • For the record, I don’t have anything against the idea of sub ohm tanks. I use them all the time, I generally like them :) I just noticed how obsessed the industry seems to be about them lately.

    • I think for me it was just simply a transition from the cartomizers to a sub ohm tank because I was tired of buying the cartomizers over and over so I looked into something I could rebuild myself. I am now trying out a RDA which is a whole unknown area for me and I like looking into different types of builds keeps my mind focused on something other than work. Kind of an escape for me I guess

  • I suppose there are a boat load of sub ohm tanks out in the market but 3 post/4 post dripping atomizers probably out number them a 100 to 1, throw in the 1000’s of tube mech mods and pretty much same variable 20-100 watt box mod in a different looking case with some TC to mix it up. It comes down to the quality and performance of the piece, more choice is better which drives the price of the product down.

  • Robert Vipond

    (08/19/15 - 6:50 pm)

    Love the sub ohm tanks… and they keep getting better. Now have 2 varieties of Atlantis a Kangertech… and what I expect to be my favorite, a TFV4 (top refillable) monster with innovative multi-coil atomizer That being said, I am only 6 months into vaping and far from tired of anything. Maybe LED illuminated tanks might brighten your day. Cheers!

  • Come on guys the very first ecig ever made would not be used in this generation. None of us would use them. There is absolutely nothing wrong with trying to market to what the consumers want. I build my coils, I also love my sub ohm tanks. If you don’t like it or want it, then step to the side and let someone else try it. The setup you used to quit smoking may not work as well for someone else. And let’s not forget the reason we all vape is to not smoke! To each it’s own. No judgment here :)

  • I had no idea this post would bring out so many great comments! Keep ’em coming, great stuff! I support everyone’s choices no matter what they are. And, yes there will be another sub ohm review out next week :)

  • You speak the truth. How about someone, with some REAL R&D money behind them, get cranking on a wickless atomizer system. I’m just a consumer, yet I have a few ideas and approaches rattling around. How about a fully-electronic atomizer system? Something with vacuum-based, gravity liquid feeding, and ability to TRULY measure temperature? Of all these “Temperature Control” devices out there, I would gander only 2 of them actually even come close (within 40°F) to what they claim. Surely the DNA and the 350J are the winners.

    Just such a stale, redundant, unoriginal marketplace. Vapor products are starting to emulate the uber safe atmosphere in Hollywood movie production. No one will take a chance, spend a dime if they aren’t guaranteed a return. Zero risk equates to zero gain for vapers.

    • Out of every ten items a manufacturer develops into a prototype, maybe 2 ever hit the market. And even when they hit the market, there’s no guarantee they’ll even be close to a success. It’s not surprising, given these odds, that companies, with slim margins in a hyper-competitive market, go with the safer bet.

      • Reasarch and development costs, manufacturing cost, marketing costs and so on. It doesn’t matter what business you’re in, that’s the cost of being in business.

        We have a situation in the UK at the moment where we have vapers opening vaping shops with insufficient knowledge of the market or retail business. They don’t realize that the biggest future market is what I call “Weekend Smokers”.

        The majority of my clients still smoke the odd cigarette. This is what they choose to do and it’s not my place to tell them otherwise.

        According to figures published by ASH, the majority of vapers still smoke. They smoke less but they still smoke. Anyone who wants to do business in vaping must include this knowledge in their business plan.

        The majority of vapers will never buy a subohm tank or a 100 watt mod and the only thing they control the temperature of is their home.

  • Interesting thoughts! It would be interesting actually if sub ohm tanks are a trend and if they lose popularity. Guess we’ll just have to wait and see!

  • I absolutely love sub-ohm tanks, but don’t really care about the new ones coming out. The features added are so negligible. I just love the ease of use. I used to build my own coils, but i’m lazy and got tired of dripping. Now i’m back to loving tanks :)

  • I agree too much focus on vapers and not enough on smokers to covert on vaping…

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