The Caliburn is the first ever pod vape by Uwell. Best known for their sub ohm tanks, and more recently vape pens, Uwell has just added a pod system to their line-up. It utilizes 2 mL refillable pods containing 1.4-ohm parallel coils and a top filling system.
The Caliburn has a dual firing system, so it’s draw-activated, but the button also functions as a firing button. Every time I let my friends test out one of my new vapes, they are never sure whether they have to push a button or not. I made a joke to one of my friends that it’s “designed for people like him”. This is a nifty little feature that we don’t see very often – the only other devices that come to mind are the original Aspire Breeze and Innokin DV.
Is Uwell’s first pod system a winner? Keep reading to find out.
Price: $37.95 at Element Vape
Colors: Black, grey, iris purple (blue/purple), red, blue teal, pink
The Uwell Caliburn is significantly larger than the JUUL and slightly shorter than the Infinix. It’s also taller than the SMOK Nord, but narrower and thinner. It stands at 110 mm tall, 21.2 mm wide and 11.6 mm thick. The device strikes me as something in-between a pod vape and a vape pen in size. It has a solid feel, but I wish it had a bit more grip to it. It has slipped out of my hands a number of times in just the past week.
The device is constructed of aluminum alloy and is relatively lightweight yet sturdy. It weighs about 34 grams with a full pod and 25 grams without a pod. The device feels well-constructed, and has even survived a few accidental drops.
The Caliburn has a practical and bare-bones aesthetic that isn’t too flashy. I’m not in love with the line engravings on the sides to be honest. I would have liked a more modern and sleeker design. I do like the e-liquid indication windows for a quick check, but I tend to just just pop the whole pod out for a more detailed look under the hood. In summary, I’m not a big fan of the overall aesthetics, but if the performance is there, then I’ll probably get over it. I ended up choosing the grey Caliburn, but if I had to do it again, I would probably go with the black one.
The pods seem very well constructed and are made of a tough plastic. The airflow is fed from two holes on the sides. It flows from the bottom of the pod which is recessed. The pods utilize a magnetic gold-plated connection. The magnets seem pretty strong, but the pods still leave a slight gap when you drop them in. You usually have to manually push that last bit of the pod in.
Uwell is utilizing parallel coils for the pods, but the overall design of the coil structure is actually a throwback to the old-school carto tanks. I like how the Caliburn combines elements of both modern and newer styles of vapes.
They state that the kit comes with one pod, but it actually came with two — one in the device, and a spare. Unfortunately, both of them didn’t work at all. They just never fired, and I wasted 4 mL of e-juice! Luckily, I purchased a pack of four pods with the device — all of which worked flawlessly.
I tested the pods mostly with Juice Roll Upz 50/50 nic salt e-liquid, and a few CBD e-liquids, most of which were 70% VG. The coils had no problem wicking with any of the e-liquids I tested them with, and the only dry hit I got was when I ran out of liquid. I’ve been using the same pod for over a week and it’s still going strong, so its longevity is definitely on point.
The pods are extremely easy to fill, it’s just a little difficult to pry the mouthpiece off, especially the first time. I heard the original ones came off too easily, so I rather have them be more secure than just come off randomly. When the mouthpiece is off, you get two 3.5 mm fill ports at the very top of the pod. When the pod is full, snap on the mouthpiece. Very clean and easy.
I really like the draw on the Caliburn. It provides a nice restrictive lung hit, somewhere between DL and MTL. If you’re looking for a super tight draw, this might not be the one for you. However, if you like the looser draw of the MTL coils for the SMOK Nord or the Mi-Pod, then the Caliburn might be just what you’re looking for. It has a comfortable draw that‘s quiet and satisfying.
The throat hit is way smoother than the JUUL. I think that’s primarily due to its airflow configuration. Honestly, with 25 mg nic salt, there was virtually no detectable throat hit! I had to use 50 mg nic salt, which was intense at first. If you’re looking for a stronger puff than the JUUL, with a bit more airflow, this is it.
The vapor production is also quite impressive for a pod vape. The coil ramps up quickly and shoots out heaps of vapor, especially for a 1.4-ohm coil at 11 watts. The vapor quality is warm, but never hot because the airflow keeps it at a comfortable temperature. The vapor gets a bit cooler as the battery life is depleted, since the voltage is not regulated.
I’m happy to say that none of the pods in my testing leaked, or gave me gurgling, popping, burnt hits or spitback. I’ve heard that other reviewers had some gurgling issues, but I can’t personally attest to this.
It’s possible that Uwell updated the pods since the device was initially released, based on what I saw on earlier reviews. The pack of pods I bought worked fine. I was able to take long draws without fear of getting a dry hit. Aside from the two bum pods that came with the kit, the rest of the experience was smooth sailing.
The Uwell Caliburn has a 520 mAh battery capacity, which is sweet, considering it isn’t pushing out more than 11 watts. It generally gets me through a whole day of vaping on a full charge. I usually get around 2-3 refills before having to recharge.
Five clicks turn the device on or off. By pressing the power button once, you can check your battery level. It will also display the same color while vaping with the draw activation feature.
Green – over 60%
Blue – within 30-60%
Red – below 30%
The device only takes around 45 minutes to charge using the included charging cable. That’s double as fast as the JUUL, and it has a larger capacity. It also has pass-thru charging, but it takes a few minutes to initiate when its fully depleted.
Despite a short list of improvements that could be made, I really like the Caliburn. The pros heavily outweigh the cons, and at the end of the day that’s what makes the device stand out from the rest. When I heard Uwell released a pod vape, my expectations weren’t that high, mostly because it’s only their first stab at a pod vape. It turns out Uwell has been doing their homework.
I know what you’re thinking. Is it better than the Nord? It really depends on who you are. The Nord offers more direct lung options, but if you happen to be looking for a nice restrictive lung hit, go with the Caliburn. The Nord offers more airflow with its 0.6-ohm coil, it’s slightly cheaper and currently offers more coil variety, but I think the Caliburn is justified by its strong performance.
Uwell has caught a lot of vapers off guard with this release. The Caliburn might even gain as much traction as their original Crown tank. It has already become a hit with many reviewers. I highly recommend it to anyone looking for their first vape or somebody looking for a good refillable device to use with nic salts (the Nord is still a better choice for vaping freebase nicotine e-liquid).
All in all, the Caliburn is a well-designed pod vape with solid flavor and great coil longevity. It’s easily one of the best refillable pod systems available right now. What are your thoughts on the Uwell Caliburn? Leave a comment below.