Pod System Reviews

Uwell Caliburn A3S Kit

So many Caliburns to chose from these days and that can only be a good thing. This time we take a look at the Uwell Caliburn A3S kit

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Supplied by Uwell for review
https://www.myuwell.com/products/pod-system/caliburn-a3s.html
Price: Around £19.99 or less

Wot! Another Caliburn! Well I guess it should be good with Uwell’s calibre. It has a few little tweaks compared to the standard Caliburn A3 which I reviewed back in December 2022:
https://www.planetofthevapes.co.uk/reviews/pod-systems/uwell-caliburn-a3-pod-system-kit.html

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod boxed

  • Materials: PCTG, Aluminium Alloy
  • Dimensions: 109.8mm × 21.3mm × 11.7mm
  • Net Weight: 32.6g
  • E-liquid Capacity: 2 ml
  • Output Power: Maximum 16W
  • Pod Specifications:
    • FeCrAl Meshed 0.8Ω CALIBURN A3S Refillable Pod (pre-installed)
    • FeCrAl Meshed 1.0Ω CALIBURN A3S Refillable Pod (spare)
  • Battery Capacity: 520mAh

Uwell have definitely improved on the A3 in a few areas; the looks for one as it has a fancy-pantsy laser etched face. The awkward top fill is now side fill and is much easier, there are two different spec pods (0.8ohm and 1.0ohm), and the thing I like the most is the cool as f**k LED light (more on that later), they have also got rid of the fire button to simplify things.

Unboxing

It was a touch of Deja-vu unboxing the A3S as it is pretty much the same packaging with different printing, there’s a handy little tab to help remove the main tray, and the manual is underneath the foam layer.

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod unboxing

As with the A3, the A3S is aimed as an affordable starter kit and the lack of a charging cable is more than made up for by supplying a second spec pod, better for us and better for the planet. I am sure most people have an abundance of USB cables, I have enough to make a coat out of em!

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod contents

THIS is how starter kits should be, it always bugs me when manufacturers don’t provide a spare/second pod or coil. This way you get to try out both specs to see which one you prefer before you re-order pods.

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod first look

First Impressions and Overview

Having just reviewed the superb Caliburn G2, the A3S was always going to be a step down, but they are aimed at different users as the A3S is the easiest pod kit in Uwell’s line-up as there are no settings or buttons at all, simply a draw activated plug–n-play jobbie.

Styling wise; the main difference is the front face no longer has a fire button. It has had a face-lift with a subtle laser etched pattern, so subtle it’s tricky to pick up in the photos and you only really see it when you rotate it in the light, apart from the laser etched ‘CALIBURN’ logo that is.

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod branding

The rear side is identical to the A3 with nothing other than ‘UWELL’ branding towards the base. The base looks the same but there is no longer an LED embedded in it (as the front face now features a lighting-feast).

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod weight

The weight is still pretty light and comes in at a measly 32g, which is a gram heavier than the A3 but there’s more electronics inside it now, not that 1g makes any difference as it is so light-weight anyway. The size is exactly the same; 109.8 mm × 21.3 mm × 11.7 mm which is perfect for shirt pockets or lanyards etc.

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod charging

The Caliburn A3S features the same 15 minute 5V/2A fast charging. The Type-C port is on the base, popping it on charge was the first time I saw the LED effect.

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod charging LEDs

Photos just cannot do it justice, this is where it would be handy to include a video. Basically the ‘CALIBURN’ logo lights up but kinda breaths with a mesmerising animation as you draw, I am a bit obsessed with LEDs so it pleased me. I think it’s the coolest lighting effect I’ve seen on a little pod, but it is still subtle enough not to be shouty ‘LOOK AT MY FLASHING VAPE!’ and you can easily cover it up for stealth vaping.

During vaping, the CALIBURN logo will flash. A green light indicates a more than 60% battery level, a blue light indicates a 30%~60% battery level, and a red light indicates a less than 30% battery level.

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod fitting

The pod is a magnetic fit and is absolutely perfect, there’s zero play/wobble and it slides in/out so easily but not enough for it to accidentally slide out, ‘perfect’ is the only way to describe the fitting.

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod base

The two different pods have the ohms and wattage marked on the base, I failed miserably to show it in the photos but trust me it’s easy to read, the included pods are:

  • FeCrAl Meshed 0.8Ω CALIBURN A3S Refillable Pod (pre-installed)
  • FeCrAl Meshed 1.0Ω CALIBURN A3S Refillable Pod (spare)

As mentioned earlier, Uwell have changed the pod back to a side fill, this might sound like a step backwards but trust me it’s a step in the right direction for me as the old one was a pain in the A3S (see what I did there?).

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod filling

I usually prefer top-fill but in this case I prefer the side fill as it is one of the easiest and cleanest pods I’ve experienced. The silicone bung pivots to the side and the fill port is generous, I was able to fill it right up without spilling any e-liquid, (I had taken a few draws before I remembered to photograph it), even placing the bung back in was clean and effortless.

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod full kit

Performance

Right off the bat I got a near perfect vape from this little bugger, I started off with the pre-installed 1.0ohm and the flavour is superb, the draw is smooth, and the airflow is a proper MTL ciggie-like draw. It comes back to the perfect fitting pod providing a proper air-seal so air only comes in through the two tiny holes on the side.

Uwell Caliburn A3S kit with pods

The 0.8ohm was equally as good but with that little bit more of everything, warmer, more saturated, and a stronger hit but still tight enough to be pure MTL. At a real push, I could manage a tight RDL draw, personally I will be buying the 0.8ohm pods as they should handle ‘disposable’ style e-liquids better.

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod juice window

The e-liquid visibility pretty good throughout but the window was a bit difficult to see through in low light, but a quick tip onto its side revealed how much was left. In bright daylight you can see every drop, the only thing to take note of is the pod has a ‘MIN’ fill line marked only on one side, and you do need to pay attention to that as the wicking ports are a little higher from the base.

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod on charge

The battery life was excellent, especially considering it is only 520mAh, I could always trust a full charge would last me a full pod, in reality it lasted longer than that (3ml with the 1.0ohm pod) but I stuck to the habit of refill/recharge at the same time, the 5V/2A fast charging rarely had me waiting between 10-15 minutes.

Though I couldn’t see any leak-resistance built into the pod, I just didn’t suffer any leaks. At worst I had minor condensation towards the end of the pods lifespan but no actual e-liquid leaking.

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod vs Caliburn G2

Here it is next to its newest rival in the Caliburn range, the G2 which isn’t worlds apart but there’s pros and cons for each which are going to come down to personal preferences and possibly price. The A3S is just simpler and surprisingly more convenient, I would say it suits beginners or those (hopefully) progressing away from disposables. Put the right e-liquid into the A3S and it pisses all over any disposable I’ve tried.

The G2 requires just a pinch more knowledge and you can adjust the airflow, you can also turn it off completely whereas the A3S is in an always-on state, the e-liquid visibility is better on the G2 and you can replace the coils in it too.

Uwell Caliburn family

Conclusion

Bearing in mind I had just moved down from the Caliburn G2, I had expected not to enjoy the A3S as much but that was not the case, the A3S just felt handier somehow and I preferred not to have a fire button getting in the way.

That aside, the Caliburn A3S is just a damn fine pod kit, beginners will struggle to find a better pod and as I mentioned earlier, it beats any disposable I’ve tried, but it’s more than an entry level pod. I’m experienced and I rate it highly, if it had replaceable coils I would favour this over the G2.

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod hands on

Pros

  • Just superb vape quality throughout
  • Easy mess-free pods
  • 2 pods included
  • Affordable
  • Addictive LED lighting
  • Ideal size and weight for your pocket
  • Proper 2A fast charging
  • Just better than the old A3

Cons

Unlike the previous A3, I don’t have a firm con. The only thing I can possibly think of as a niggle is the ‘MIN’ line is a little higher than I would have preferred but it’s a very minor niggle.

Final Thoughts and Score

The Caliburn range just keeps on improving. I was never a fan of the very first Caliburn as the draw was too loose, but these days I’m a fan of ANY kit that has Caliburn at the beginning of it as it is pretty much guaranteed that you will get exceptional vape quality. Which kit suits you will vary on the style, but the A3S ranks up there with the very best compact pods.

I liked it that much I restrained myself from using the ASS (A3S) pun too much!

Score: 9/10 – Just buy one, you won’t feel an A3S for doing so.

Uwell Caliburn A3S Pod hole in one

Si Davies avatar

Si Davies

Reviewer at POTV
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My background is Engineering and Professional Photography. Mostly from POTV users knowledge I learned so much about pretty much all styles of vaping and equipment, Cloud Chasing, Squonking, Mouth To Lung, Direct To Lung, Pods, Mechs, Rebuild-able tanks and atomisers etc, and have experience with many many devices and atomisers, it's become a hobby and enjoy trying out the latest gear. I like to think my reviews are plain speaking and informative without getting too technical, if I have to resort to reading the manual then I don't consider it user friendly!

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