SMOK T-Air Subtank
Supplied by our trusty friends at TECC
“Send us Tanks!”
I think this is the first time I’ve reviewed a tank only from Smok but TECC have a knack of stocking decent kit and saw something special in the Smok T-Air Subtank, let’s see if we agree…..
*Before I get stuck in, I have well and truly fallen out of love with Smok. I used to be their biggest fanboy and I own a ridiculous amount of Smok kits from my shinyitis days and I still LOVE most of them, but it’s just the newer kits that have lost me. In the past year or so Smok have gone Pete Tong with some cheap and nasty kits, they even managed to ruin the Mag range, the latest one is just nasty, so I went from Smok fanboy to Smok-Mocker and I semi reluctantly agreed to review this Smok tank – Spoiler alert – I’m so glad I did!
This is a bit of a change of direction from Smok and a welcome one. Instead of flogging too many variations of their ‘Baby’ tanks (I always hated that name for a tank), they have designed a new tank from the ground up with the latest innovations and an interesting style.
- Sub ohm tank
- 26mm diameter
- 510 connection
- Stainless steel and pyrex glass construction
- Top adjustable airflow
- Top-fill design
- Suited to high VG e-liquids
- New TA push-fit coils
- Leak resistant
On the face of it there appears to be no innovation, but this is the first top-airflow tank Smok have produced to my knowledge. Along with the all new TA coils, I think the T-Air should be a different vape experience compared to the older Smok tanks.
I have been a Smok addict for many years and the packaging feels comfortingly familiar. The sturdy two piece box looks classy and displays an image of your colour choice on the front with the legal bumf on the back. Strangely they didn’t list the contents or coil specs, no biggie though.
Take off the top and you are greeted with the T-Air Subtank held in black foam with a preinstalled coil, it does look rather nice I must admit.
Remove the top layer via the handy ribbon and you reveal the ridiculously thick multi-language manual, Smok are no friends of the trees. Underneath that, you have another foam layer holding a spare glass, another coil, and a bag of O-rings.
So you get pretty much everything you should expect from a stock coil tank, Smok used to treat us poor TPD sufferers unfairly and didn’t include a spare glass but this time we get one – thank you! The two coils included are: Smok TA 0.15ohm Mesh & Smok TA 0.20ohm Mesh.
First Impressions and Overview
Right off the bat I loved the look and size of the T-Air, it’s one of those tanks that looks stylish but not too showy to make it awkward to match with a mod, I tried it on numerous mods and it looked good on the majority of them.
Even though it is a 26mm diameter tank, it narrows at the base which makes it fit more mods than I expected, even 24mm base mods to a degree.
The main styling is down to the notched rings of the base and top-cap, the multi-hole airflow ring also adds a unique style. The only potential style clash are the blue O-rings but there are also red ones included. I think black seals would have made it more versatile though.
The modern press fit coil method is present, you unscrew the base counter-clockwise to reveal the coil, the threading was surprisingly short as it only took a couple of turns but it felt secure. The coil sticks out enough to grip and pull out, but I did find it a bit fiddly, a teaspoon did the trick though. Replacing the coil is easier but you do need to align two tabs on the coil.
Stripping it down into its components was pretty easy and once stripped it is easy to deep clean, something I find important in a tank design as some are near impossible to clean fully. One thing stood out in the construction and that’s the minimal threading, only the base has a true thread and the top-cap has a half turn thread, everything else simply pulls off including the airflow ring.
Putting it all back together requires a bit of care, the glass goes on really easily but you need to ensure it is fully fitted otherwise the base won’t screw back on. The airflow ring is the next thing that requires attention, it is on a stopper so you have to ensure it is in the right position otherwise the top-cap won’t fit properly. I make it sound fiddly but it is all intuitive and you can’t really go wrong.
The 810 drip-tip is pretty boring by Smok’s standards, just a plain black standard 810 (without O-rings), but it works well with this tank and it’s comfortable with a large bore.
The included coils are quite different to Smok’s previous humongous beast coils, they are noticeably smaller, but that is the way coils have evolved in recent years, bigger isn’t always better and a more compact coil seems to deliver stronger flavour in my experience.
- Smok TA 0.15ohm mesh coil 40-60W (best at 55W)
- Smok TA 0.20ohm mesh coil 60-70W (best at 65W or 66.6W in my case)
The other noticeable difference is the lower wattage range, Smok were known for their crazy high wattage coils, some going up to 130 watts and even higher, it was all about the clouds for them, but higher wattage doesn’t always equate to bigger clouds in my experience, and I can still achieve massive clouds with a 40 watt device.
Either way, I am going to class these coils as a pro, they are sensible, well wicked and have decent sized wicking ports to allow for chain vaping.
The top-cap took a little getting used to, it felt wrong at first and I thought I had a duff seal but it turned out that I hadn’t positioned the airflow ring correctly so it stuck up too high and prevented the top-cap sealing, easy enough to reposition as you can feel the two stops of the airflow ring easily. With that done it still feels odd, you turn it a third which feels loose but then you need to force turn it about another sixth until it fully stops. You quickly get used to it and, more importantly, you realise that this bugger isn’t going to accidentally come loose in your pocket so it turned out to be another pro, you just get used to it straight away.
The filling ports are generous and I didn’t experience any air-locks, though the TPD 2ml glass limits how quickly you can ‘spurt your load’ in, the optional bubble glass would make it easier.
I lobbed the T-Air Subtank onto one of my all-time favourite Smok mods, the gorgeous G-Priv, used the TA 0.20ohm and filled the tank with Peaked Blue Razz Ice 70VG/30PG 3mg e-liquid. The suggested wattage range is 60-70watts – f**k that! I love that the G-Priv has 0.1 watt increments so I could dial in my number of the beast 66.6W which was close enough to the "best At 65W".
It used to be that new Smok coils required easing in when brand new, so starting at something like 40-50 watts for a dozen or so draws, but since I felt that this tank is closer to modern tanks, I went straight in at 66.6watts and to my delight it performed perfectly straight away. The flavour was immense and the warmth was in the goldilocks zone of not too cool or hot, I was already impressed!
I then turned my attention to the airflow adjustment. This was bloody perfect, I honestly can’t fault it. Wide open will give you a very airy DL draw, and almost fully closed it will give you an RDL draw. Better still, it wasn’t as noisy as previous Smok bottom airflow tanks, the airflow path was just smooth with no turbulence I could detect. I closed it off to around half shut to suit my preferred draw (the reason I do this is; a tighter draw means I can tolerate a longer and smoother draw which gives me more flavour in my experience) and it still remained smooth with no nasty whistling sounds. The stoppers are a nice touch, and I also found it easy to rotate and difficult to accidentally adjust, so like I say “perfect”.
By now I am confident to say that this is the best DL sub-ohm vape I have experienced from Smok, even beating their superb Baby V2, and things only got better with the o.15ohm coil.
Swapping the coil to the TA 0.15ohm mesh coil 40-60W (best at 55W) using the same e-liquid, I set the wattage to 55.5 (just because I could) and again it delivered a superb vape immediately. Both coils performed as they should without any break-in period, but the flavour from this coil was so much better. The main reason is that the 0.15ohm coil is a dual coil which naturally favours flavour over clouds and it did just that, I cannot recall enjoying the flavour quite this much from previous Smok tanks.
Basically the 0.2ohm coil will be a better choice for cloud chasers and the 0.15ohm for flavour chasers but both will still give you plenty of flavour. Both handled chain vaping though the 0.15ohm got a bit too warm.
Every Cloud Has A Silver Lining – or does it?
Here’s the thing, there’s something that Smok have sacrificed to produce such a superb tank and that’s vapour production. If ‘massive clouds’ are you thing then the T-Air might not be for you. Don’t get me wrong, you can still get plenty of vapour production from it but not quite as much as you would from Smok’s older tanks. Personally I think Smok have done the right thing and this seems more grown-up and sensible in every way, I feel far less of a dick vaping this in public as I can keep the cloud control to a minimum. Each to their own though and I’m not having a dig at cloud chasers, I still LOVE a cloud chucker to fill my garden with fog!
The Smok T-Air Subtank is without a doubt Smok’s best tank yet in my opinion, I love its looks and it matches most of my mods. It has top airflow to avoid leaking but most importantly it delivers a near perfect vape, the flavour is a 10/10 for me especially with the 0.15ohm coil.
It is so good that I will now be replacing all my previous Smok tanks with one of these, it suits every Smok mod and it instantly upgrades my Smok devices into current generation. I haven’t used my G-Priv for over a year but this T-Air has literally given it a new lease of life.
Bits I Forgot To Mention:
- Leak-resistant works a charm, Smok tanks used to be dreadful for leaking through the bottom airflow slots, buy the top-airflow solves that and it even manages to suck up any residual e-liquid from the base.
- Coil lifespan; Smok had a miserable reputation a few years ago for their dreadful coil lifespan, some wouldn’t last a day! It was a total lottery, but these days they have gone from the worst to one of the best, their coils last ages and the new TA coils are no exception. I hammered the 0.2ohm especially to test chain vaping and see if I could kill it quickly, but nope it’s still going strong with no dry hits.
- Bubble Glass; if like me you were hoping the Baby V2 glass would fit then you will be disappointed, the new glass is wider so you will need to buy one for this tank – bah!
- 810 Drip-Tip fitting, though it is a standard 810 fitting you will need a tip without O-rings as the top cap has its own O-ring inside.
- Stylish but not too flashy
- Perfect top airflow
- New TA coils smash the flavour barrier
- Instantly upgrades old Smok mods
- Leak resistant
- Tapered base matches more 24mm mods
- Long lifespan
- A good stripper
- Minimal threading
- High Quality
- Coloured O-Rings might not be to your liking
- Boring drip-tip
- Grrrr now I ‘have’ to buy more of em
Final Thoughts & Score
Smok have knocked it out of the park with the T-Air Subtank. Forget any pre-conceptions with the Smok brand, this tank stands out as one of the best on its own merits and will sit happily on most mods. Personally I am more happy that I can upgrade my classic mods with a modern spec tank with superb flavour and coil lifespan.
Now if they can just get their act together with their mods I will be back to a Smok fanboy.
Score 9.5/10 – I am starting to fancy my ex again.
TECC have done it again by sourcing another winner.