What is a sub-ohm tank?-Infographic

Vaping360 takes a look at the best sub ohm tanks on the market. Our team has vaped on hundreds of different sub ohm tanks over the past few years and the below sub tanks are our top 10 picks. There are hundreds of sub tanks now available to purchase, but we have done our best to provide you with the top picks (in no specific order).

If you are looking for a sub ohm tank then have a browse through our best of list below to help you make your purchase decision.

Best sub ohm tanks of 2018

  • Nice build quality
  • Smooth threading
  • Wide fill ports
  • No Leaking
  • Wide variety of color options
  • Resin/steel/carbon fiber options
  • Excellent flavor/vapor production
  • Superior coil longevity
  • Includes matching 810 resin drip tip
  • Cons
  • Need to empty tank to replace coil heads
  • Coils not currently for sale in matching colors
  • Specifications

    • Size: 24 mm (D) x 46.5 mm (L)
    • Material: 316L stainless steel + pyrex glass
    • Stylish knurled surface to replicate the appearance of mesh
    • Thread: gold-plated 510 connection
    • Diameter: 24 mm
    • Juice capacity: 3 mL max capacity
    • Fill: threaded top fill
    • Airflow: dual bottom adjustable airflow
    • 810 drip tip

    Freemax is leading the mesh revolution with their latest sub ohm tank. It’s available in a wide range of colors and styles. The Fireluke Mesh uses mesh kanthal coil heads to increase surface area and flavor. Another advantage to mesh is that they last much longer than your typical coil.

    The tank has a smooth airflow system and puts out tons of thick clouds. It is 24 mm in diameter and it holds 3.5 mL of juice. The Fireluke Mesh takes sub ohming to a new level with its unique coil heads. The tank has a fresh look that sets it apart from the sea of generic tanks out there.

  • Good cloud production
  • Great flavor at midrange wattages
  • Unique wicking materials
  • Short coil break-in time
  • Good coil longevity
  • Cons
  • No RBA included
  • Not Baby Beast compatible
  • Slight leakage with mesh coil head
  • Specifications

    • 25.2 mm diameter
    • Threaded top fill system
    • Two fill ports
    • 5 mL maximum tank capacity
    • HorizonTech Falcon coil family
    • Dual bottom air slots
    • 14 x 3 mm each
    • Fully closable
    • 11 mm bore 510 Delrin drip tip
    • 8 mm bore 510 resin drip tip
    • Resin at random
    • Gold-plated 510
    • Stainless steel and glass construction

    The Falcon is different. Horizontech is taking it a step above and beyond with this one. It doesn’t just use your typical organic cotton, but also utilizes other materials to enhance flavor. They use flax, mesh and wood pulp paired with cotton to deliver unprecedented flavor for a sub ohm tank.

    The Falcon is 25.2 mm in diameter and holds 5 mL of juice. It takes their last Arco tank to a new level. The tank has two huge top fill ports and big bottom airflow slots. It comes in six colors and there are currently four different coils available. Ideal for mid-wattage sub ohm flavor chasers!

  • Easy sliding top fill
  • Lots of coil options
  • 7 mL capacity
  • Huge vapor production
  • Great flavor
  • Innovative design
  • Compatible with Baby Beast coils
  • Tons of airflow
  • No leaking
  • Cons
  • Won't look right on smaller mods
  • Specifications

    • 25 mm diameter
    • Slide to fill top fill design
    • Large fill ports
    • 7 mL maximum capacity
    • Innovative isolation structure design
    • Compatible with the GT coil family
    • Triple adjustable bottom airflow
    • 11 x 3 mm each airslot
    • 11mm bore delrin drip tip
    • Heating insulation layer

    Do you want to push the limits? The Vaporesso Cascade tank allows you to vape at up to 200 watts! Can you handle it? The tank can produce rooms full of clouds while providing top-notch flavor. The 25 mm tank holds 7 mL of juice and uses an innovative plug-style coil head system.

    Not a cloud chaser? The tank comes with an adapter so it’s compatible with anything from the GT coil family. This means you can still get great flavor running it at just 25 W! The Vaporesso Cascade uses a unique isolation structure design to provide the ultimate sub ohm experience.

  • Great overall performance
  • Locking top mechanism
  • Convenient half-twist top fill
  • Coils break in fast
  • Can handle a lot of power
  • Smooth quiet airflow
  • Good build quality
  • Cons
  • Doesn’t perform as well when tank is half full
  • Tank gets hot after chain vaping
  • Condensation build ups in drip tip
  • Specifications

    • 24.5 mm diameter base
    • 5.0 mL max capacity
    • Anti leak threaded top fill method
    • 3.5 mm x 6 mm dual fill ports
    • Crown 3 plug and pull replacement mechanism
    • 0.25 ohm SUS316 parallel coil 80 to 90 watts
    • 0.5 ohm SUS316 parallel coil 70 to 80 watts
    • Vertical coil design
    • Plug and pull design
    • Threadless design
    • Convenient and fast coil installation and replacement
    • Crown 3 key tool
    • Coil changing and tank cleaning
    • Precision triple adjustable bottom airflow
    • 11 mm x 2 mm each
    • Stainless steel construction
    • Available in other finishes
    • Quartz glass
    • Stainless steel 510 threading
    • 24 K gold-plated contact

    The Crown is back! One of the most popular tanks ever made is now better than ever. The Uwell Crown III is a 24.5 mm tank that holds 5 mL of e-liquid. It features an anti-leak threaded top fill with large fill ports. The Crown II utilizes a smooth bottom airflow design.

    The coil heads have been redesigned with a new plug and pull system. Instead of having threading like most coils, you simply just pop them in. Crown III coils come in 0.25 ohms that run from 80 to 90 watts and 0.5 ohm coils good for 70 to 80 watts. Both are made of 316 stainless steel. Enjoy crisp flavor in both wattage and temperature control mode with the Uwell Crown III.

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  • Resilient tank design
  • TPD compliant (when using EXO coils)
  • Big airflow slots
  • Resistant to leaking due to gasket seal
  • Still accepts original 0.4 and 0.2 ohm Cleito coils
  • Huge vapor/flavor production for a sub ohm tank
  • Includes spare drip tip
  • Cons
  • Non-adjustable airflow
  • Need to refill often when using EXO coils
  • Specifications

    • Size: 23.5 x 57 mm
    • Capacity: 2 mL (TPD version)/ 3.5 mL (standard version with 0.4 ohm coil)
    • Coil: 0.4 ohm (40-60 watts) / 0.16 ohm (60-100 watts)
    • Thread: 510 thread

    The Cleito is back and stronger than ever. It still accepts the original Cleito 0.4 ohm coil heads in addition to the new EXO coils, which convert it to a TPD-compliant (2 mL) device. Expertly machined using stainless steel and durable PCTG technology. Dual top air slots deliver more than enough airflow for mid-wattage vaping.

    The Aspire Cleito EXO is 23.5 mm large and holds 3.5 mL with original 0.4 ohm coils rated from 40-60 W. The EXO coils are 0.16 ohm claptons good for 60-100 W. The top cap has convenient knurling and a full-gasket seal. Last but not least it has a 24 K gold-plated 510 connection.

  • Convenient top fill system
  • Big dual 16 mm x 2 mm airflow holes
  • Beastly clouds and flavor production
  • Two types of coils available (0.4 and 0.5 ohm)
  • Good build quality
  • Cons
  • Not compatible with original Baby Beast coils
  • Specifications

    • Size: 24.5 mm x 59 mm (standard edition) / 24.5 mm x 57 mm (EU edition)
    • Capacity: 4 mL (standard edition)/ 2 mL (EU edition)
    • Coil: X Baby Q2 dual coil - 0.4 ohm (40-80 W)/ X Baby M2 dual coil - 0.25 ohm (3.7 V mech mod)
    • Material: stainless steel
    • Thread: 510

    Introducing the Baby Beast Brother! SMOK has reimagined the TFV8 into a new 4 mL device. Sizing in at 24.5 mm in diameter, it features the same top filling method that made the TFV8 popular. It also has two huge 16 mm by 2 mm airflow holes suitable for a nice direct lung draw.

    The build quality on the X Baby is pristine, as you would expect from SMOK. The tank was designed not to leak, due to its top hinge locking system. It takes M2 0.5 coils (30-50 W) and Q2 0.4 ohm coils (40-80 W). An excellent choice for those who love a flavorful mid-wattage vape.

  • Small sized tank
  • Amazing flavor
  • Massive clouds
  • Top-fill
  • Cons
  • E-liquid capacity
  • Specifications

    • Tank capacity: 2.0 mL
    • Tank resistance: 0.50 ohms
    • Tank length: 71 mm
    • Tank width: 18 mm

    The Halo Reactor Mini is the little brother to the Halo Reactor tank. This is the perfect tank for those of you looking for a sub ohm tank that is small in size and diameter. The Reactor mini fits very nicely on smaller vape mods. To make up for the smaller capacity the Reactor Mini features a top fill function, to make re-filling a piece of cake. Despite its diminutive stature, the Reactor Mini still chucks huge clouds of vapor. The flavor, as with the Halo Reactor, is fantastic and when used with Halo’s high VG line, makes for an outstanding vape.

  • Doesn’t leak
  • Variety of coils for various vaping styles
  • Mesh spit back protection
  • Awesome flavor
  • Huge clouds
  • Ideal for mid to high wattage vaping
  • Easy to use slide and fill design
  • Insulation layer prevents overheating
  • Quality construction
  • Beveled airflow provides nice draw
  • Cons
  • Mesh screen is non-removable
  • 510-drip tips don’t sit completely flush
  • Specifications

    • Size: 26.5 x 56 mm
    • Capacity: 5 mL
    • Coil: GT8 – 0.15 ohm (60-110 W) / GT4 – 0.15 ohm (30-60 W)

    Vaporesso knows exactly what they’re doing. They’ve been scoping out the market and observing the features from all the best sub ohm tanks around. The NRG is one of the most advanced sub ohm tanks to date by far. This tank is for people who want maximum clouds with the best possible flavor.

    The NRG sub ohm tank uses a slide and fill design. Refilling it is easier than most tanks on the market. Other unique features include a mesh screen to prevent spit back and a beveled airflow design. The Vaporesso NRG takes CCell ceramic coils, and a variety of GT cores ranging from 0.15 up to 0.4 ohms.

  • 8 mL capacity
  • Huge clouds and flavor
  • Variety of coil heads
  • Locking top fill system
  • Strong glass section
  • TPD version available
  • Quality machining
  • Cons
  • Incompatible with Cloud Beast King coils
  • Specifications

    • 25 mm diameter base
    • 28 mm at widest point
    • Hinge and lock top fill system
    • 5 mL max standard capacity
    • 8 mL max convex glass extension capacity
    • Compatible with the SMOK V12 Prince coil family
    • Dual-adjustable air slots
    • Stainless steel and glass construction

    The Prince is SMOK’s most powerful tank yet. This TFV12 tank takes everything great from the Cloud Beast King with a few features of its own. It features the same top fill system you love but with a new locking switch, so it won’t ever open in your pocket. Available in 18 different colors!

    Sub ohm tanks are notorious for running through juice. Good news, the Prince includes a strong bubble glass that holds a massive 8 mL of e-juice! A TPD version is also available for European vapers. Feel the quality machining on this tank everytime you unscrew it or adjust the airflow.

    Sub tanks explained

    What is a sub ohm tank?

    Sub ohm tanks (also called sub tanks, sub ohm clearomizers, or sub ohm clearo tanks) have both a generic definition and a specific marketing definition. The generic definition of a sub ohm tank is any atomizer tank where the resistance of the coil (or the aggregate resistance when multiple coils are used) is less than 1.0 ohm. The specific marketing definition is a tank of less than 1.0 ohm coil resistance that is designed to use and comes with a pre-made, factory-built, removable atomizer head containing a coil or coils with wicking material that screws into the base of the tank and can be replaced with a new head.

    History of atomizer development

    Sub ohm clearo tanks evolved from various stages of atomizer development. Dripping atomizers came first — a coil on a ceramic base inside a cylindrical metal shell, which screwed into the base of a mod (power source) via a threaded connector that also provided electrical contact. E-liquid was dripped into the open end of the tube directly onto the coil.

    Some atomizers were marketed with two sections that fit together — one cylindrical section for the coil, and another that was stuffed with wicking material (usually silica fibers).

    After that came clearomizers. These were single-piece cylindrical metal tubes, open at one end with a connector at the other, where the coil was usually installed vertically, with wicking material wrapped around the coil. E-liquid was dripped into the open end of the tube until the wicking (silica or polyester fibers, but occasionally more exotic materials such as blue foam for fish tanks) was saturated. This allowed longer vape times before refilling.

    Next was clearomizer tanks (vape tanks), which used a clearomizer whose metal tube had holes punched or drilled. The clearomizer was then installed inside a sealed plastic or glass tank that held a larger quantity of e-liquid. Inhaling through the drip tip created negative pressure inside the tank that forced e-liquid into the clearomizer, saturating the wick. Early clearo tanks were homemade by cutting plastic syringes into sections.

    Not long after that development, factory-built clearomizer tanks appeared. Gone were the punched metal tubes inside the tanks. These clearo tanks had fixed coil “heads” with long wicks that extended into the e-liquid reservoirs of the tanks. Stardust Tanks, also called CE4s, where the first really successful disposable tanks. That genre was followed by non-disposable tanks whose heads could be removed and replaced.

    Through these years of atomizer development, the coil resistance was almost never lower than 1.25 ohms, and could be as high as 5 ohms.

    Then the sub ohm craze caught fire. Vapers discovered that ultra low resistance allowed higher power vaping that provided a much more intense vaping experience — better flavor and much more vapor production.

    The first sub ohm tank was the Aspire Atlantis, followed soon by the Kanger Subtank. These were glass tanks with removable/replaceable clearomizer-style coil heads that had resistance as low as 0.5 ohms. Soon after that the flood gates opened, and every ecig hardware manufacturer came out with its own sub ohm tank or, very often, complete line of tanks with custom heads — horizontal or vertical coils, organic cotton wicking, in single, dual, quad, or even eventually octet coil configurations, and at resistances down to 0.15 ohms (for nickel Ni200 temperature control coils).

    2015 was arguably the Year of the sub ohm clearomizer tank. They were amazing. 2016, however, is the year of the RTA. While sub ohm clearo tanks are still very good, the crown of vaping now goes to the best of the new generation of RTAs.

    Sub ohm tanks vs. RTAs

    Technically, the difference between a sub ohm clearo rank and a rebuildable tank atomizer (RTA) is that a sub ohm tank uses pre-built factory coil heads, while an RTA has a deck on which the vaper installs his or her coils (either homemade by hand, or purchased) and wicks. The clear waters that distinguish an RTA from the sub ohm Tank get muddied, however, by manufacturers offering RBA deck heads for their sub ohm clearo tanks. This gives buyers the choice of using disposable sub ohm factory heads or building their own.

    RTAs have generally come with more spacious, higher-quality build decks, but even that is changing. Some recent clearo tanks now come with very good Velocity-style build decks. RTAs have continue to move forward in development, however, with features such as e-liquid flow control, which most sub ohm clearo tanks don’t have.

    Tips and tricks for getting the most out of your sub ohm tank

    Prime the coil head before first use

    Before using a new coil head for the first time, it should be “primed.” E-liquid should be applied to the head’s inlet holes or slots to wet the wicking just inside the shell, then 2-4 drops of e-liquid should be dripped into the open top of the head, directly onto the coils and wicks. Let the head sit for about ten minutes before initial firing to allow complete absorption into the wick. This prevents burning the cotton wick because it’s dry.

    Break in the coil head gradually

    With a new coil head, start firing at low wattage, say 20 watts. You won’t get much flavor and perhaps no vapor at all, but that’s OK. You’re letting the coil head ease into doing what it does so well, and this is essential. Then gradually increase the power in steps over a period of minutes or even hours. No matter how well-primed a new coil head may be, hitting it with 70 watts of power right off the bat will probably shorten its life span dramatically.

    Keep tissues or paper towels handy

    Vaping is messy. There’s no way to avoid spilled or leaked eliquid. Whether the discussion is about RDAs, RTAs, or Sub Ohm Tanks, keep a box of tissues or a roll of paper towels within arm’s length. You will need them to wipe up e-liquid spills or clean up leaks.

    Replace the coil head when necessary

    Coil heads that last forever are the holy grail of vaping tanks, and manufacturers are moving in that direction with ceramic heads and plate technologies that eliminate coils completely. They’re not yet there, however.

    Coil heads wear out in two ways: 1. the coils themselves gunk up with residue and burned carbon, and 2. the wicking material gets burned or fouled and either loses its ability to wick e-liquid to the coils.

    The easy way to tell if your coil head is dead is to vape. If the flavor diminishes or gets funky, it’s time to change the head. Sometimes, however, we’ve forgotten how great the coil head was when new, so we don’t notice reduced or tainted flavor. For that reason, a second, visual method is needed:

    Whenever you’re about to refill a sub ohm tank, examine your coil head. Look down the open top end. Is the wicking material still white or darkened toward brown or black? If it’s black, it’s done and needs to be replaced.

    Rebuild coil heads if you wish and can

    For vapers who have the parts and skill and who enjoy rebuilding, many sub ohm clearo heads can be rebuilt with surprising ease. That’s not as quick as unscrewing an old, worn out head and screwing in a new one, but it can be both satisfying and inexpensive for those who enjoy it. Rebuilding factory heads gives the vaper control over wire type, coil build, wicking material, and resistance.

    If that appeals to you, hundreds of videos on rebuilding factory heads are available on YouTube. The learning curve isn’t essentially any more difficult than learning coil builds and wicking for an RTA.

    If it’s not your thing, however, don’t sweat it. Just buy another pack of replacement heads, and you’re good to go for six more months.

    What type of vaper are sub ohm tanks best suited for?

    Sub ohm tanks are ideal for vapers who want a more intense vaping experience, usually at higher power, and with ease and convenience — prime a coil head, install it into the base, fill the tank, gradually ramp up, then vape for days. Vapers who love sub ohm clearo tank typically don’t want to drip (as RDAs require) or build their own coils (as RTAs require).

    The Vaping360 team is a diverse group of experienced vaping contributors. We strive to bring you the finest content on all things vaping. Don’t forget to sign up to our newsletter and make sure to follow us on Facebook and Instagram for more!

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