Aspire Rhea mod
UK Aspire Vendor have sent over their latest dual 18650 mod, the Rhea, for us to take a look at. This is a little different as it is described as having “unbeatable shockproof construction” and as such, I thought this might be handy to use in work where my mods tend to to get thrown about quite a bit in the car. A Rhea is of course a large flightless bird from South America, similar to an ostrich or emu, so is this going to be tough as old boots or a giant turkey? Read on to find out….
[aside: Aspire could also be referencing Rhea the god of fertility from greek mythology but I couldn’t think of a funny jibe for that one]
This is available in several finishes with either “leather” or “alcantara” grips on the back, I was sent the “Granite Grey” version for review and this has an all black frame with grey leather panels around the back. This came in simple pre-release sample packaging with no information on the back of the box, a USB charge cable, and a small user manual, although I expect the full retail release to be fairly similar.
- 208.5 grams
- Zinc Alloy with leather or alcantara grip
- Dual 18650 batteries / Type C 2amp fast charging
- 1~200 watt output (0.5~9.0 volts)
- 0.1~3.5ohm resistance range
First impressions here are good, it’s a bit chunky with a classic wedge shape design intended to be used as a thumb firer which I’m rather fond of, and those grey leather panels are lightly padded which improves comfort and grip with a metal band running down the spine in a nod to the Vrod 200 design.
This certainly feels like it’s been built to last but this comes at the cost of weight, at 208 grams it may not be to your liking if you don’t like heavy mods. It feels well balanced in the hand though even with batteries and a large tank on top. I would have liked to have seen one of the “alcantara” finished mods but I’m suitably impressed with the fit and finish of this one so I’m not disappointed in the slightest and I can heartily recommend the “leather” finished variants.
The shockproof protection is largely provided by two large rubber bumpers on the top and bottom of the Rhea and these should provide a level of protection against drops and daily knocks. Sadly there’s no ip67 rating, a missed opportunity perhaps?
Specification wise, it’s fairly similar to the Aspire Vrod 200 mod I reviewed not too long ago, in fact I think it’s using the same chipset but the menu system is even easier to use this time with the addition of a menu button above the plus and minus buttons. The buttons all have a nice response to them and there’s zero button rattle, and in the middle there’s the now familiar screen layout which is nice and vibrant so it is easy to see outdoors even though some of the text is rather small (reading glasses are definitely a must here).
The board is nice and responsive with all the modes you’d ever need (wattage/voltage/bypass/TC/curves), and I’ve been suitably impressed with the performance of all the Aspire products I’ve looked at recently in that regard. Wattage is adjustable in 0.5 watt increments up to 100 watts and 1 watt increments after that, in voltage mode it’s adjustable in 0.01 volt increments across the full 9 volt range, and temperature control seems good as before.
Batteries are inserted from the bottom, the battery door and the bottom of the battery tubes are all clearly marked for polarity. There’s a fairly beefy beefy contact pin for the battery door as well. It can be a bit fiddly getting the door to latch closed but the spring loaded retaining clip is metal so there should be no fears about it breaking with use, and I had no issues with batteries getting stuck this time like I did with the Vrod 200.
Charging is done via the USB-C port and in my test it hit a 1.9 amp charge rate if you tend to charge your batteries in mods. I would always recommend using an external charger but this is handy in a pinch.
There’s a fairly large 510 platform up top, this looked quite good matched up with my Aspire Guroo tank but it will accommodate larger tanks should you need it. Even my steam crave Glaz rta didn’t look out of place here, and that’s a whopping 30.8mm diameter beast!
- Solid performance from the Aspire board
- Large 510 platform
A bit on the heavy side
If you’re looking for a solid workhorse mod that can take the occasional knock then this might just be the ticket with its shockproof design. Even though it’s a bit on the heavy side, I’ve found it to be very comfortable in use even with my smaller hands, and the Aspire boards have proven to be reliable with good performance. This has fairly understated branding as well which adds to the appeal in my book.