SMOK VCT Intro
In this article we review the SMOK VCT A1 (vapor chaser) sub ohm tank. The VCT is priced at the lower end of the sub ohm tank market. It costs around $20-25 in the US and around £20 in the UK. This means it is similarly priced to the Eleaf Melo sub ohm tank, and about 50% cheaper than the higher end Kanger Subtank Mini, Delta 2 and Aspire Atlantis. The SMOK VCT seems to boast a lot more features than the similarly priced Melo. I think it could be a real contender, in what is becoming an exceedingly competitive, sub ohm clearomizer market.
We hadn’t heard too much about the SMOK VCT A1 tank, so we were interested to see what it could offer compared to the rest of the sub ohm tanks.
SMOK are also releasing another sub ohm tank called the Gimlet (GCT), which is meant to be an improved version of the VCT A1. All the Smok coils will be interchangeable between the two tanks. We have a Gimlet on the way, so stay tuned for that review early next week!
SMOK VCT Specs and Features
- 1 x Smoktech VCT A1 Sub-Ohm Vapor Chaser Tank
- 1 x SS Widebore Tip
- 1 x Spare Pyrex Glass Tube
- 2 x Organic Cotton Coil: 0.5 Sub-Ohm
- Ultra durable Stainless Steel and Pyrex Glass Construction
- New adjustable airflow control for superior airflow delivery
- Innovative coil design with 100% Japanese Organic Cotton Coil
- Smoktech VCT A1 Sub-Ohm Tank is capable of holding 3.8ml of juice
- Smoktech VCT A1 uses single vertical coil with revolutionary ALF (Adjustable Liquid Feed)
- Comes with two 0.5 ohm coils
- 510 connection
- Diameter: 22mm
- 4 different coil types to choose from: A1,X1, X2 and the DIY (RBA)
Different SMOK VCT Coils
First off let me try and explain the different coils SMOK are offering with the Vapor Chaser Tank. SMOK have launched 4-5 different coils for the VCT, meaning everyone’s tastes should be catered for. They have done both horizontal and vertical coils in different resistances. All the SMOK VCT coil heads are made from 100% Japanese organic cotton.
- Coil Type: Single bottom vertical coil available
- Resistance: 0.5ohm or 1.2ohm
- Power: 15 – 30W
- Juice flow control: Yes
- Coil Type: Single horizontal
- Resistance: 0.5ohm or 1.2ohm
- Power 15 -30W
- Juice flow control: no
- Coil Type: Dual Horizontal
- Resistance: 0.4ohm
- Power: 20 – 30W
- Juice flow control: no
Dual airflows and comes with a pre-built 0.4ohm coil.
Ni200 (comes with the SMOK Gimlet sub ohm tank but can also be used on the VCT):
- Coil Type: Vertical
- Resistance: 0.2ohm
- Power: Up to 100W!
- Juice flow control: No
SMOK have produced so many different coils, which is awesome, but very confusing. It took me a while to even find the information on all the different coil types and even then I wasn’t sure if I had missed any. I have also heard of a 0.3ohm coil being mentioned, but I can’t find anything concrete on that, just a few mentions of it on Reddit. Let me know if I have missed any coils or resistances, as I was a little confused by the amount of different coils there are!
Variety of Different Coils
As explained above the VCT A1, comes with several different coils, which I think is a big selling point. Having the different coils means the tank is very versatile and will cater to a larger audience of vapers. Some people will prefer the vertical coils, which tend to produce more vapor and others will opt for the horizontal ones which produce a more intense flavor.
We tried the A1 and X2 coils. The A1 we tried in the 1.2ohm and 0.5ohm resistances and the A1 coils feature an impressive juice control function, like on the Joyetech Delta 2. The juice flow control is a great option, for those who like to use differing PG/VG mixes. If you have a higher VG e-liquid you’ll want to keep the juice holes open wider and with heavier PG e-liquids you will want to close the juice holes more. We used Driptonic e-liquid, which is around 70-80% VG and had the juice holes wide open. We didn’t have any wicking issues as the juice holes are absolutely massive, much bigger than on any of the other sub ohm tanks so far.
The A1 coil at 25W, produced magnificent vapor production (see vid below), but for me it lacked flavor. I think this is probably because of its vertical coil build.
The X2 (o.4 ohm) on the other hand tasted incredibly good (up there with the Subtank mini in terms of flavor). This is most likely because of its dual horizontal coil build (something I haven’t seen on any other sub ohm tank) and the 5 massive juice holes! We used it at 30W which seemed to work great. The one thing I would say is that the vapor production was a bit warmer on the X2 coil, much like the Subtank Mini. When chain vaped at 30W the drip tip did get slightly warm as well and we got the occasional bit of spit back. Also note that the X2 doesn’t come with the juice flow control that the A1 coils come with.
I can’t comment on the RBA or the X1 coils, as we didn’t get to try those, but If you are looking for flavor I would recommend either the X2 or X1 with their horizontal coils. If you want clouds and juice flow control I would go for the A1.
Low Price Point
As mentioned above the VCT A1 is priced at the lower end of the sub ohm tank market. It retails for around $20-25 in the US and for around £18 in the UK. For what you get and the different coils available, I would say it is an absolute bargain.
100% Cotton Coils
All the different coil types use a 100% Japanese Organic Cotton. There are no mystery ceramic materials as far as I am aware, which is a big positive for me. As you might know from some of the other sub ohm tank reviews, we were not a big fan of the ceramic man-made mystery wicking materials on one or two of the other tanks.
Great Flavor and Vapor Production
Using the iStick 50W with the SMOK VCT (A1 0.5ohm Coil)
The flavor and vapor production you get off the SMOK VCT tank will depend on which coils you use. As mentioned above the X1 and X2 being horizontal coils, will provide more flavor, whilst the A1 with its vertical build, will produce more vapor. The A1 coils also feature that handy juice flow control system, which is useful for those using higher PG liquids and wanting to perhaps mouth inhale instead of lung inhaling.
With the X2 coils we tried the flavor was right up there with the subtank and with similar vapor production. I thought the flavor was slightly lacking on the A1 coils compared with the Delta 2, Melo or Atlantis. I would definitely opt for the X1 or X2 coils, unless you want the juice flow control, then I would go for the A1.
MASSIVE Juice Flow Holes
On all the coils, the juice flow holes were massive, bigger than any of the other sub ohm tanks we have tried so far. This meant the wicking had no issues dealing with 80% VG e-liquids. For higher PG liquids you can reduce the juice flow on the A1 coils to make sure it doesn’t over wick.
On first glance the air flow holes do not look as big as the Atlantis. However the SMOK VCT features two airflow holes, one on either side of the device. The airflow can be easily adjusted by sliding it, and it has a little stopper to stop you sliding it all the way around.
The coils also have a good amount of room at the bottom for the air to flow through the coils. The vertical coils will obviously have better airflow because of the vertical coil build allowing more air to flow through them.
Other Little Things
The tank was very easy to fill and had plenty of room down the sides to pour in e-liquid. The 510 connection worked well and we didn’t have any issues putting it on any of our box mods. The kit also comes with some red replacement o-rings, if you want to change out the black ones. Aestetically I also think the SMOK VCT looks really nice especially on top of a nice mini box mod!
Flavor Lacking on the A1 Coils
I thought the flavor wasn’t quite as good as some of the other sub ohm tanks when it came to the A1 coils. My brother was of the same opinion, but I have heard others enjoying the A1 coils, so I would say it’s down to personal preference. The X2 coils that we tried, and I expect the X1 coils will be similar, produced a much more pronounced flavor, which was a lot more enjoyable for me.
Tank can’t be filled to the Top
The tank has an advertised 3.8ml capacity, but I found you can only really fill it up to around 3.2ml of e-juice. If you fill it up normally without the coil in the tank, there will be a lot of space left over in the tank when you tip it back over. This is a bit of a shame, but I found that you can fill the tank up fully by keeping the coil attached to the chimney. The coil actually screws into the chimney and if you leave it in, you can fill the tank up, almost to the max. It is a little more fiddly, but it seemed to work without leaking all over the place.
My personal feeling is that the SMOK VCT feels slightly cheaper when it comes to the build quality. I guess as it does cost a lot less, you should expect this, but little things were lacking on the overall build quality. There is an o-ring on the underside of the pyrex glass, which looks like it is glued on (SMOK say it isn’t glued on, but it looks like it is to me). This o-ring feels very flimsy and I have heard that it has broken on other peoples devices. There isn’t a spare o-ring for that part of the kit either.
Also when we put the tank back together after cleaning it we can’t quite get the top to sit straight. It doesn’t quite sit completely flush anymore, but the o-rings are still fixed in place so it doesn’t leak. It’s just tiny things like this which could be improved upon. I am sure the Gimlet (GCT) by SMOK will be slightly better quality overall.
Overall though the VCT performed well and I can’t complain too much about those little things above. You have to remember this tank does cost $15-20 less than the Kanger Subtank!
Drip Tip Gets Slightly Warm when Using X2 Coils
The last little thing was that the X2 coils when used at 30W, produced quite a warm vape, and the drip-tip got slightly warm, if vaped heavily. I did also get one or two tiny spit-backs with the X2 coils, but nothing major.