Tanks, tanks everywhere…
There is a saying on Twitter, “If you can’t debate in 140 characters or less, you’ve lost the argument”. Sometimes this could be true, but in others the character limit is incredibly limiting, even with character substitutions and abbreviations it is incredibly difficult to get your point across on a complex subject.
This is one of the reasons I have a blog, so I can take my time and be as wordy as I like to explain things.
It all started when I saw a tweet from Phil Busardo.
New post: INNOKIN GETS READY TO LAUNCH ANOTHER SUB-OHM TANK http://t.co/7cyGCpcE05
— Phil Busardo (@pbusardo) September 4, 2015
I dutifully went and read the post because let’s face it, Phil is worth listening to, but I was groaning at the same time. Another sub-ohm tank. It prompted this:
I can't be the only one fed up with seeing *another* Sub tank being released? https://t.co/HjseVDUSiD
— Paul (@MorphRv) September 4, 2015
I guess to an extent the phrase “fed-up with” isn’t exactly correct. I tire of seeing innovations at what I perceive as the wrong end of the market arena. Here’s the thing, I use a Kanger SubTank (and own three of them). I own an eLeaf Lemo2, Triton and two Kayfun (a Lite and a 3.1 )tanks. I am not what you would call a “normal” vaper. Far bloody from it in fact. I also own an AeroTank Mega, ProTank-3 (2 of), Nautilus, eGo One, and a Delta-II.
I moved onto Aspire Nautilus tanks after the ProTank-3 mainly because I didn’t want to re-fill during the day whilst out and about at work, no other reason. The bonus (at the time) for me was that the Nautilus seemed to produce better flavour from the liquids I chose to vape.
Aspire currently have the following dedicated sub-ohm tanks:
- Atlantis 2
- Atlantis Mega
I’ve not tried the Atlantis, but I do have the Triton although I’m not overly impressed with it. It isn’t a bad tank, but it isn’t one of my favourites. I also started with a CE4, presumably it was an Aspire CE4, but I can’t remember for sure.
Aspire have these other offerings:
- CE5 / CE5-S
- Vivi Nova / Vivi Nova-S / Vivi Nova S (Glass)
- Mini Vivi Nova / Mini Vivi Nova-S / Mini Vivi Nova S (Glass)
- ET Clearomizer / ET-S / ET-S Glass
Four sub-ohm products, and five product lines that cater for starters and moderate users.
As per the tanks I own, I’ve had ProTank-3’s (had two of them for juice rotation) and an AeroTank Mega purely for the juice capacity.
Kanger currently have the following sub-ohm tanks:
- SubTank Mini
- SubTank Nano
For the starter or moderate user:
- Aerotank V2
- Protank-2 / Mini Protank-2
- Mini Protank-3
- AeroTank MOW
- T2 / T3S
Three sub-ohm tank products and six for the starters and moderate users.
I’ve never owned an Innokin tank product, though one did come with my MVP2 it never got used. The majority of Innokin’s product ranges focus on the actual mod rather than the tanks themselves.
- iSub G
- iSub Apex
For the starter or moderate user:
- iClear 12 / 16 / 16B / 16D / 16S / 30 / 30B / 30S
- Gladius / Gladius-X / Gladius-M
Three sub-ohm products and eleven for the starter or moderate user, though the Gladius is touted at the more ‘advanced’ user.
These guys made a bit of a splash with the iStick and have widened the range considerably since then.
- iJust 2
- Lemo 2
- Lemo Drop
For the starter or moderate user:
- GS Air
- iJust Mini
Here we have a 50/50 split.
- VCT Pro
Nothing for the starter or moderate user.
Now, I know I’m picking on brands that I know here but it highlights (at least for me) a widening gap between the two ends of the market, with newer manufacturers focusing on the rebuildable or sub-ohm tanks and completely ignoring the starter or moderate users, whilst the more established manufacturers are starting to edge towards the doing the same thing.
Don’t get me wrong here, I love my Lemo2 and SubTank, but I also love my Kayfuns (when I can be bothered to coil and wick them) and as a relatively experienced user I have no actual issue with the sub-ohm and rebuildable market. The gripe I have, and it’s a big gripe shared by a fair number of advocates, is the starter and intermediate markets.
One of my “go-to” on-line vendors is Evolution Vaping and out of curiosity, I checked the “Regular Tanks” category. There’s 17 products listed, whilst under the “Sub-Ohm Tanks” category there is 11. Rewind a year and the balance of those two categories would be significantly different. Fast forward a year (assume Article 20 is torn out of the TPD), I would suspect that the balance between the two categories would again be significantly different with far more in the sub-ohm category than in the regular tanks category.
That’s just one vendor. With so many sub-ohm tanks being produced now, all vendors will have this imbalance. I’ve already griped about the direction that the devices are going in in an earlier post on this very blog.
Now I may be slightly old-fashioned in some respects, after all I started vaping with what could be classified as an “entry-level” device and tank. I then slowly progressed to more “advanced” tanks such as the ProTank or Nautilus before moving on to a rebuildable or sub-ohm tank. I appreciate that this wouldn’t be the case for many as the individual “talents” may have a bearing on what device and tank is chosen.
On another previous post, I received some thought-provoking comments surrounding the starter kit area with this one in particular:
Starter Kits: Closed systems are really ‘Trial’ packs. They are very limited. As I mentioned I quickly moved to MYO. I wanted to control flavour and strength. Once commercial flavours appeared this wasn’t as necessary although I still dabble. From talking to others, flavour choice is important and it takes a little experimentation to find the ones you like. As a result I believe it is important, even for beginners, to have ‘open’ systems.
So we have Trial, Starter……Advanced and Advanced+ the all singing all dancing latest best thing since the last one. The biggest gap seems to be between Starter and Advanced.
So, with all that in mind do I have a problem with new sub-ohm tanks being produced? Well, yes I do, but not for the reason of “it’s another sub-tank”. The problem I have with the “industry” is the simple fact that it seems to have forgotten where it started. By all means Kanger, Aspire, Smok, eLeaf and all the others, keep innovating in the “Advanced” and “Advanced+” sectors (rebuildable and sub-ohm), but try not to forget that the market you have now had to start somewhere and by that I mean the 510-T, CE4, ProTank, Nautilus users who have little or no interest at all in building their own coils, or worrying too much about whether or not the batteries they have are capable of being used with a sub-ohm tank. You know, those folks that are still smoking and considering trying one of your products.
I don’t really care what people use, as long as it keeps them from smoking
— Dimitris Agrafiotis
A sentiment I wholeheartedly agree with tempered with the fact that some smokers don’t want to switch. That’s absolutely fine. But for those that do want to? Let’s give them the products and the innovation that folk like me and millions of others have enjoyed over the last few years, don’t force them down a path that may not suit them.