Pod vapes and mini vapes have created a category of their own for vaping starter kits. These compact and straightforward use devices are the ideal vape for beginners or people wanting to quit smoking. However, with the exhausting list of vape starter kits and even pod vapes, it isn’t easy to know where to start and what to recommend to friends. We’ve simplified the options for you by scoring the best pod vapes that we’ve tested. The list includes both pre-filled and refillable pod mods.
Vaporesso has produced a definite Caliburn competitor, our previous number one. The Xros comes in a similar design but raises the stakes with adjustable airflow, mesh coils, and an 800 mAh internal battery. The Vaporesso Xros is a button and draw-activated device filled from the top and comes in ten colors.
Uwell Caliburn G
The Uwell Caliburn G pod kit is an upgraded version of the popular Uwell Caliburn pod device. Powered by a 690mAh built-in battery, with a 15W max output, the Caliburn G keeps the same pocket-friendly and stylish form factor as its predecessor. Inserting the pod in different positions, users can modify their inhale with a restricted DTL vape and an MTL inhale and is available in six colors.
The Innokin Sceptre is the perfect AIO pod device for beginners. Featuring a built-in 1400mAh battery that can output up to 20W of power, the Sceptre is excellent for vaping on the go. The Sceptre pods hold 3 mL of juice and adjustable airflow for MTL and DL settings to accommodate the two coil options and are available in five colors.
Geekvape Wenax Stylas
The GeekVape Wenax Stylus pod kit is stylish and easy to use for new vapers. The Wenax has a light aluminum body and features a built-in 1100mAh battery, with automatic or manual activation, push-fit G coils with consistently good flavor throughout the lifespan of each coil.
Voopoo Drag S
The Voopoo Drag S has a generous 2500mAh built-in battery, which outputs up to 60W of power, a large color screen, USB-C fast charging, plus the GENE.TT chip, which provides fast coil activation and a variety of protection features to keep you vaping safe. The Drag S also features adjustable airflow, large 4.5 mL pods, and a 510 adapter for 24mm tanks.
Voopoo Argus Air
The Voopoo Argus Air is a compact, feature-rich pod kit created from metal and leather. It comes with a Genie.AI chip to automatically detect the coil, suggesting the best wattage levels, a 900 mAh internal battery, and a power output of 25W. The Argus Air GT is flexible depending on the pod you use, an in-built coil for a Mouth-to-Lung vape or a replaceable PnP coil for a restricted Direct-Lung vape. Rotating the pod, you can choose between a restricted or airy airflow to suit your preferences.
JAC Vapour Wee VIM
The Jac Vapour Wee VIM is an excellent little starter kit with either a refillable tank or pre-filled pods. Suitable for all-day vaping with its ultra-small size, fitting comfortably in the palm of your hand, and a massive 2600mAh vape battery. The VIM gives you the best of both worlds with adjustable airflow. You can vape with MTL vape coils and direct lung (DL) coils; a looser draw inhaled directly into the lungs.
SMOK Nord X
The Nord X is the latest device in the Nord line of pod vapes. It comes with a Type-C connector, large 6 mL pods, a 1500mAh built-in battery that can output up to 60W of power, and IP67 certification for water, dust, and shock resistance. The SMOK NORD X is compatible with both push-fit RPM2 coils and RPM coils, quickly filled using the side fill port and magnetically connected.
Aspire Breeze NXT Kit
The Aspire Breeze NXT vape pod kit is the next generation in the Breeze range. The NXT features external airflow control and an updated mesh coil for mess-free replacements. The Breeze NXT has a massive 1000mAh battery and easily refillable 2ml pods from the side port, which does not require pod removal, making it an ideal introduction to vaping.
What is a Pod Mod?
A pod mod, referred to by many different names, including pod vapes, vape pods, mini vapes, or pod system, has been designed to help smokers transition into vaping.
They are more compact and often more comfortable to use than vape pens.
A pod mod is a mini vape device typically small and pocket-friendly that utilizes a pod filled with e-liquid that connects very simply to a battery.
They are incredibly simple to use, either automatically activated through inhaling or some include one power button.
One of the reasons pod vape systems have become so popular with new vapers is they can come with the pods pre-filled with liquid, meaning there’s no need to buy replacement coils or juice, just the pods. Some companies like JUUL offer a subscription for replacement pods, so you get them sent to your house at designated intervals.
Pod vapes can also come with empty refillable pods, allowing vapers to use their e-liquid.
Refillable vs. Pre-filled Pod Systems
Refillable and pre-filled pod systems both have their advantages and disadvantages. It comes down to personal preference, so it’s worth seeing which category suits you best before purchasing a pod system.
- Refillable pod systems: Also known as open pod systems, use empty pods refilled by the user. These give you more freedom in terms of flavor. The main advantage to them is that you can purchase e-liquid from anywhere and have a broader range of flavors at your disposal.
- Pre-filled pod systems: Also known as closed pod systems, are non-refillable pods pre-filled with the manufactures e-liquid. Available flavors will be dependent on the manufacturer, and some only carry a small range. However, having the convenience of not choosing a liquid type and physically filling the device is a huge advantage.
What e-liquid is best to use for refillable pods?
- Nicotine salt e-liquid: is commonly used for pod vapes due to its higher nicotine content and smoother draw. Nicotine salt was introduced and popularized by JUUL.
- Traditional e-liquids: You can use any e-liquid that is not too viscose. Typically, 50/50 VG/PG ratios work best on pod mods, but some do still function well with higher VG based e-liquids.
Who should use pod vapes?
- Smokers wanting to quit – Smokers transitioning to vaping appreciate the practical and straightforward design of pod mods and their easy nicotine delivery. Most also offer a similar draw to that of cigarettes.
- Experienced vapers – Even experienced vapers use pod mods, especially those that like mouth-to-lung style vaping. They make great companions to their usual larger setups and are ideal for travel.
- Stealth vapers – For those times where you don’t want to be carrying a large device that bellows huge clouds. Pod vapes are discrete both in their compact size and for their cloud production.
Benefits of using pod vapes
- Simple & easy to use
- Discrete, compact form factor
- Designed for smokers to quit
- Easy maintenance
- Tight MTL draw (like a cigarette)
- Minimal vapor production
- Low e-liquid consumption
- Instantly change flavors
Pod systems do have plenty of advantages over other vaping systems.
The most obvious being they are convenient and easy to use, especially for new vapers. You don’t need to worry about other devices’ complicated technical features, which is an excellent appeal to ex-smokers.
Also, they offer an MTL-style draw that mimics that of a traditional cigarette, making it an easy gateway to transition into vaping.
There are also other benefits to pod vaping that experienced vapers can appreciate. Firstly they are easy to maintain, and there is no need to build your coils. Secondly, switching flavors on the go is as easy as changing pods.
Pod vapes are generally low powered devices with high ohm coils. If you want to be conservative with e-liquid consumption, they are a great option.
Downsides to using pod vapes
- Small battery capacity
- Can be expensive
- Limited vapor production
- Limited flavor selection (pre-filled)
As with everything in life, Pod Vapes also have some downsides that you might want to consider:
Due to their compact design, there is limited space for a high capacity battery. So most have far lower battery life than a regular vape device. However, depending on the coils’ power consumption and your usage, a pod vape could still see you through a day of vaping.
Other downsides, especially with closed system pre-filled pod vapes, are the limited flavor selection. Often, the pre-filled pods come at a slightly higher cost.