Eleaf Pico Compaq Pod/AIO
RRP = £39.99
Eleaf are one of those vape brands that don’t tend to go for crazy or gimmicky products. What they do produce is often well designed and reliable, my first proper vape was a Pico Grande and it is still going strong today. The Pico range is pretty vast, and the latest release is the Pico Compaq Pod system.
Here’s some bumf from the website which is a good introduction:
"The Eleaf Pico COMPAQ is a small but powerful pod mod. Using a single 18650 battery, the Pico COMPAQ can output up to 60W of power, and features an ergonomic design that fits in the hand comfortably for all day vaping. A clear OLED screen displays all of your key vaping information at a glance, whilst the USB-C port allows for quick and easy recharging, meaning more time vaping and less time waiting to charge. The Pico COMPAQ also has multiple on-board protections such as 10 second cut off, overcharge, over-discharge, and short circuit to keep you vaping safe."
The only part of that which confused me is ‘Pod Mod’ as there doesn’t appear to be any 510 adaptor available for it. I would simply class it as an AIO (All In One) device.
Obviously there’s more to the Compaq than that, and I will go into more detail as I go along.
- Pod capacity - 2ml
- Coil resistance - 0.4Ohm mesh
- Output mode - VW
- Wattage range - 1-60W
- Atomizer resistance range - 0.1-3.0Ohm
- Battery compatibility - 1 x 18650 (not supplied)
- Max charging current - 2.0A
- Dimensions - 89.0mm x 53.5mm x 31.5mm
- Assembled weight exc. packaging (approx.) - 183g
Eleaf have stuck to their traditional, clean look packaging for as long as I can remember, I kind of like it as it’s not too flash or pretentious. There’s an outer sleeve showing the colour choice, the back has some basic information and contents, and there’s an authenticity sticker on the one side.
Despite the bold claims of “THIS PRODUCT CONTAINS NICOTINE”, I couldn’t find it anywhere in the box so I had to purchase my own.
- 1 x Eleaf Pico COMPAQ
- 2 x 0.4Ω GTL coils
- 1 x USB-C cable
- 1 x Warranty card
- 1 x User manual
- Battery warning card
Everything is packed very securely and the Compaq has protective film around it. The usb-C cable and the 0.4Ω coils are packed into a box tucked into the side, and the docs are underneath.
I’ve been a regular user of pods for over 2 years, and the overwhelming first impression was just how big and chunky the ‘Compaq’ is. I can’t think of a bigger 18650 Pod/AIO. Height wise, it’s okay, but the width and depth is bloated and also quite weighty.
That aside, I really loved how solid and industrial it looked and felt, it has that solid Eleaf quality about it. The lightly brushed alloy finish is gorgeous, and the carbon fibre effect panels are metallic and smooth coated which feel great and, better still, they aren’t fingerprint magnets.
The pod protection cap is a nice touch and fits on snuggly, the retention chain is good quality and is optional as it can be unhooked if you prefer not to use it.
The 18650 battery cap is new to me. A short push/twist to unlock it, popping a battery in it is effortless and feels really secure once fitted.
Looks and ergonomics
I’m so surprised just how much the Compaq has grown on me, it’s just the initial size that distracted me from how great this design is. As I’m writing this review, I keep handling it and I appreciate every face and edge and how it just fits into your hand so snuggly. With the easy access to the trigger styled fire button for multiple firing positions, it felt natural for index finger or thumb firing.
The more you look at it, the more you realise the bloated shape of it is deliberate and not out of necessity. It’s wider than the battery, pod and board, and I’m pretty sure if I could strip it down I would find some empty space and thickened metal, not that this is a bad thing as if it was all thinned out and streamlined, it wouldn’t feel as good as it does.
The screen is quite narrow and holds limited information (Wattage, Ohms & Puff Counter), but it is nice and bright, and no more info is required. On the same face is the airflow intake slot, fire button, small down/up buttons, and the usb-C port. The opposite side is plain and smoothed off, with that really fine brushed effect.
I chose the silver carbon edition, and I really love what Eleaf have done to create that shiny 3D look. The branding is typically minimal which is another thing I like about Eleaf. At the base are some battery vent holes.
The top face has the battery cap and the pod housing. You can probably see what I mean about how Eleaf have thickened the chassis. The pod housing is pretty deep and holds the pod securely with no play, and the magnets are nice and strong.
The 2ml pod is well designed and easy to fill. The coil is a press fit with two flats on the base for position. A small detail which I like is the fill tab is bright green and easy to identify. The fill port is wide enough for most bottles and there is plenty of room so it is mess free and easy to see your juice level.
The included 0.4Ω GTL coils look just the job, nice clean bore and large wicking ports so the juice should flow nicely which is exactly what you need for mesh. Strangely, they included 2 of the same coil which has to go down as a con.
Navigation and Operation
The Compaq is very basic, too basic for me especially as they are claiming it to be a ‘pod/mod’. You only have the option to change your wattage, lock adjustments, flip the screen and reset your puff counter. That’s it. This is probably fine for most new vapers, but I would have liked to see BYPASS at the very least. If Eleaf do bring out a 510 adaptor to turn it into a mod, then the lack of options will be more of an issue.
- 5 x FIRE = turns device On/Off
- UP or DOWN = increase/decrease wattage.
- Hold UP/DOWN = locks adjustment (device still fires)
- Hold DOWN & FIRE = flips screen
- Hold UP & FIRE = resets puff counter
- FIRE to vape
That really is it. I even resorted to reading the manual in case I am missing some magic trick but nope, that’s your lot.
The only other info I found in the manual was the coil recognition for sub Ohm (under 1.0 Ohms) and higher Ohms (over 1.0 Ohms) which appears to limit your wattage range depending on which coil. Obviously I could not check this out with only one coil type supplied.
So I chose to use the 0.4Ω coil instead of the 0.4Ω coil which is Kanthal mesh with the suggested wattage - 15-35W. At 15 Watts, the vape was pretty crap, hardly any vapour or flavour. I soon worked my way to the upper limit of 35 Watts, and it was much better. The flavour pops nicely and the vapour production was quite high. I would have preferred a slightly warmer vape, but I soon got used to it, in fact I was really enjoying it. The lack of airflow adjustment wasn’t an issue for me either. I tend to close off DL airflow to around 2/3rd open and it felt close to that. If you did need it tighter, you can actually slip your firing digit over the intake to close it off a bit. Is it any good for MTL? Is it f**k, just forget it unless Eleaf intend to produce a dedicated MTL pod with airflow restriction.
Battery life is excellent. The benefit of such a basic chipset and tiny screen is you get a much longer battery life, even at 35 watts using a 2500mAh 18650, it lasted me a full day and some. I couldn’t tell you the charging time as I use a dedicated charger.
The big fat pie eating Elephant in the room
There’s no escaping that the Compaq isn’t compact, in fact it’s the largest single 18650 Pod/AIO I have tested. I honestly don’t have a problem with that as such, but it would have been better to give it a more suitable name, perhaps Vapey McVape-face or Pico Pig?
To give you an idea of its size, here it is next to the Eleaf Pico Squeeze 2. Bear in mind the Squeeze 2 has a more advanced chipset, large squonk bottle and takes a 21700 battery, then you can tell it isn’t a very compact pod. I forgot to photograph them side by side but the Compaq is fatter.
Yet I still love it’s curvaceous figure, and it’s just that bit different in the aptly bloated pod market and, as mentioned earlier, Eleaf have clearly designed it to be this size. It’s not like Eleaf don’t know how to make compact vapes, the Pico Baby is a classic example of that.
Either way, don’t let the size put you off, unless of course the size puts you off.
Overall, the Compaq really won me over and grew on me daily. It’s only when you get to hold and use it that you appreciate what it is, and that is a solid high quality DTL AIO that fits snuggly into your hands. If you’re after a teenie weenie podikini then I doubt you will like the Compaq, for a pod system it’s quite chunky and weighty.
I’m a bit of an Eleaf fan as I do like the simplicity and lasting quality. Despite the Compaq’s very basic chipset, it performs well with the pod and coil. Even though it ate all the pies, I REALLY like its form factor and how gorgeous it looks. It also sits nicely into my Eleaf collection.
The Silver/Carbon version has a sturdy industrial look to it but now I quite fancy a couple of the other ‘posher’ versions too, so the answer is there as to whether I would buy one or not.
- Design and styling
- Solid quality construction
- Simplicity for new vapers
- Easy swap battery cap
- Mouthpiece cap
- 0.4Ω Flavour is top notch
- Fits nicely into your hand
- It’s Eleaf
- Ideal for DL (Direct Lung)
- Large for a pod system
- Very limited chipset
- Is it a Pod/Mod?
- No airflow adjustment
As long as you can put aside its bulk, and you don’t mind the limited functions, then I think the Compaq will surprise you as much as it did me. I really thought I was going to slate this kit but I ended up loving it for what it is, and that’s a solid quality, gorgeous 18650 AIO system that is still ‘Compaq’ enough for a pocket vape (NOT a shirt pocket though).
Looks over substance, but boy does it look good!