Innokin recently tweaked their EQ pod vape and released the second version, called the Innokin EQs. The Innokin EQs is button-activated and built on an 800 mAh battery, it has three adjustable power levels (11.5W, 13.5W, 15.5W), and the refillable pods hold 2 mL for nic salts or regular juice. The pods, which are cross-compatible with the original EQ, have a new coil inside — a 0.48-ohm PLEX3D. And like the original EQ, the coils are built into the pods.
I heard a lot about the original, but I never got around to trying it. Since the EQs is my first experience with this line of pods from Innokin, I can’t write a performance comparison review — though I will reference general knowledge about the EQ when necessary.
Innokin sent me this device for free for the purpose of this review.
Available in Purple / Coral Pink / Grey / White / Sky Blue / Black
1 Innokin EQs Pod System
1 Innokin EQ Pod
1 MicroUSB Cable
1 User Manual
Build quality and design
The Innokin EQs is nicely executed in terms of build quality and design. Depending on the color you get, there’s either gold-plated or chrome accents around the base and the pod housing that gives it a more refined look than the EQ. Additionally, the zinc-alloy body of the EQs has a satin finish instead of a rubberized finish. The mouthpiece hasn’t changed. It’s still wide and perfectly ergonomic for the lips.
The overall footprint of the EQs is a bit smaller than the original EQ. Now the bottom of the device has a slight taper, making it rest more comfortably in the hand. With a pod in, the device stands about 84 mm tall and it’s about 37 mm at its widest point (it tapers down to 33 mm near the base). The EQs weighs about 58 grams with a full pod, and although that’s not terribly light, it’s more than 10 grams lighter than the Aspire Breeze 2.
The EQs button is placed at the perfect spot for thumb-firing, and the position of the charge port (high on the side instead of the bottom like on the EQ) offers the option to charge it at an upright position. But the taper on the bottom of the device makes it less stable when standing up — when charging or otherwise.
Innokin EQs pods
The EQs comes with one pod. The original EQ pods had the Plexus 0.5-ohm coils, and the EQs pod has the 0.48-ohm PLEX3D coils which are supposed to heat up and cool down faster – marketed as increasing the life of the coil.
The Innokin EQs pods are magnetized drop-in pods with a quick and mess-free refill system (which I love!). Although the pods are a dark shade, it’s actually quite easy to see your juice level with just a bit of a light source. And since almost the entirety of the pod is above the housing, you won’t have to remove it to check how much juice is left, even when it’s getting empty.
Unfortunately, the pod’s magnets aren’t as strong as I would like. The tolerances are fine, meaning they don’t wiggle around in the housing, but one drop to the floor and the pod will likely pop out. It’s not a big deal considering so many other brands make their pod connections like this, but I miss the days of satisfying clicks!
As far as I’m concerned, the beauty of the EQs pods is in the refill system (which is the same as the original). There’s a green bar on the bottom of the pod (it’s black in the original EQ) that gets turned to the left or right, revealing two fill ports that are perfectly sized for unicorn bottles or even droppers. Once you fill the pod, the green bar gets turned back into place with no muss or fuss.
When you open your kit, the pods will come with a plastic dust cover. This is used to keep foreign stuff out of your pods while not in use — or you can just discard it (which is what I did). To take off the dust cover, just push against the top part of it and it will click off. It’s easiest to take off once it’s in the pod housing of the device because the base of the EQs gives better leverage. If you want to keep the cover on while refilling, simply pull up on it and it will stay attached to the pod.
To fill the pod, twist the green bar left or right and add your juice until the pod’s almost full. Wait about five minutes for the coil and wick to soak up. After waiting five minutes or so, select the power level by holding down the button for three seconds. The power levels are indicated by a small triangular LED toward the bottom of the device, directly under the button.
Green: 11.5 watts
Blue: 13.5 watts
Magenta: 15.5 watts
After you select your wattage, turn on the EQs by clicking the button three times. I would prefer a way to change the wattage without having to turn off the device but, the way Innokin made it, it alleviates having to fire the device to change the power or having to remember different amounts of clicks for this and that. All things considered, it’s easy and user-friendly.
The EQs has a lot going for its design and build quality, but how does it perform? This is where the rubber meets the road!
My first pod on the Innokin EQs had me singing its praises. The PLEX3D 0.48-ohm coil gave excellent flavor, satisfying vapor, and a wonderful throat hit — no matter the wattage setting. The draw is non-adjustable, but it’s a tight yet easy MTL. Perfect for nic salts. There was no leaking (just a little condensation), no gurgling, nor any spitting. I did occasionally get a pop on the initial inhale, but it’s nothing out of the ordinary.
I’ve used it in all the settings and preferred it right in the middle at 13.5 watts with 50 mg nc salts (50/50). The coils are supposed to heat up and cool down quickly, but I found the ramp to be a little sluggish in the green and blue setting. The highest setting heats up the quickest.
All was going swimmingly in the beginning. Then the performance sank! The first pod started tasting really funky after like the third refill. When I say “funky,” I mean the flavor started tasting like cardboard! It got really dry, chalky tasting, and leaving a bad aftertaste. I could still taste my juice, but it was really adulterated. Obviously, I discarded that pod hoping that it was just an anomaly. Unfortunately, the other five pods I tried tasted the same… but what’s worse is they started out bad. I tried changing juices, changing power settings, shortening my draw length, and anything else I thought might get me back to the great performance I had. It didn’t happen.
I went from being in love with the performance to wincing at the thought of using the EQs. Since the EQs and the EQ pods are interchangeable, I may try the EQ pods in the EQs device. Although the original had a power boost to push it to 15.5 from 11.5 watts, my hope is that the 13.5-watt setting of the EQs may be the sweet spot for the 0.5-ohm EQ pods. Even if that does work out better though, it’s still unfortunate that the initial performance I got with the PLEX3D coils didn’t last. In the beginning, it was really good. I know the performance of this type of coil design works great in the iSub B, the Zlide, and the Z-Biip, but something isn’t working right in the EQs.
Note: An interesting feature of the EQs is the draw cutoff. In most devices it’s like 7-9 seconds, but the EQs can sustain an activated draw for up to 15 seconds. That said, I don’t recommend taking drags that long on this device. It doesn’t have temperature control and it probably won’t taste good if you push it that hard.
The battery seems to last a long time. The EQs does have pass-thru charging, so no matter how long it takes the device to charge, you can use it whenever you need. With frequent usage, I was easily able to get a day out off the battery.
Battery status LED is indicated on the button:
The EQs has a long charge. It took about 1hr 15 minutes to go from red to green, and then another 15 minutes for the green light to turn off. I’m not sure if it’s fully charged when it goes green or when the light goes off but, either way, the charge takes awhile.
We’ve been in contact with Innokin about this review. They are surprised — if not shocked — at the reports of my experience.
With their permission, here is their initial reaction:
It's really a surprise that I heard about the poor flavors from multiple pods and we don't have any complaints before from any customers, both B2B and B2C clients or other reviewers. And personally, I have attended two shows in the UK in May and people there tried the EQS and like the flavors.
Innokin is going to send me more pods to test because, apparently, my experience was an anomaly.
As stated in the review, my first coil was performing really well. I was more than happy with the device. But the performance dropped, and the other few coils were bad.
I know that things happen in manufacturing, especially with the nature of how coils are made. So I'll update this review with a new verdict and performance section if the new coils warrant a revision.
Pros / Cons
Satin finish feels good in the hand
Nice MTL draw
Three power settings
Brilliant refill system (one of the best I’ve ever used)
Easy to see juice levels in pods
Compatible with the EQ pods
Adulterated flavor tastes dry and off
Pod connection magnets could be stronger
If the quantity of pros vs. cons is what you care about, the Innokin EQs looks awesome at a glance. There is so much I like about the device that what I’m about to say feels strange: I do not recommend the EQs.
I got such an amazing experience with it in the beginning that I’m positive that the flavor problems can be worked out. If so, I would recommend this thing in a heartbeat! Here’s to hoping Innokin can work it out. Theoretically, the EQs should perform as well for flavor as the Z-Biip and Zlide considering they all take PLEX3D coils, but that didn’t happen for me.
What do you think? Have you tried the Innokin EQs? If so, how has the flavor performance been for you? Innokin was surprised by this review.
I'm a freelance reviewer here at Vaping360 and I reside in southeast Michigan. I've been vaping since my first ecig purchase in 2010. For more reasons than I can list, vaping has been a lifesaver for me. Now, my goal is to help other smokers make the switch.