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SMOK is becoming a leader in vape technology with their growing family of tanks, mods and coils. I’ve been using their TFV4 tank for about six months and I still use it more than any other tank I own.
DirectVapor sent one of the newest mods from SMOK, the R-Steam Mini for a Seven Report review and it’s lived up to the expectations I have of SMOK products. This is a compact, high powered temperature control device with loads of options.
The R-Steam Mini has a variable wattage range of 1 – 80 watts with adjustments in 0.1 watt increments. It will fire standard coils with a resistance range of 0.1 – 3.0 ohm. In temperature control mode the R-Steam will fire Nickel 200, Titanium or Stainless Coils with a resistance of 0.06 – 2.0 ohm. The temperature range on this mod is 200° F – 600° F in increments of 10°, and 100° C – 315° C in 5° increments.
A single 18650 battery (not included) powers the R-Steam Mini. You can charge the battery while it’s in the mod via the micro USB port on the front of the mod with the included charging cable. It has a spring loaded 510 connector.
There are three buttons on the front of the R-Steam Mini, the fire button and, below the display, the increase and decrease buttons. The fire button is used to turn the device on with five clicks, select options in the extensive menu system, and fire the mod. The up and down buttons are used to change temperature and wattage settings and to scroll through the menu system.
SMOK outfitted the R-Steam Mini with upgradable firmware, which you do by connecting the device to a computer using the micro USB port and charging cable. Updates are available through the SMOK website. The version of firmware installed on the unit is displayed when you first turn it on.
When you attach a new coil to the R-Steam Mini it asks if it’s a, “New Atomizer?” Scroll through the options, “yes” or “no” with the up or down button and then press the fire button to select it.
The R-Steam Mini has a very extensive menu system that takes a little while to learn. I suggest keeping the manual handy for the first few days of using the mod, just to help you wade through the many choices. Options include choosing temperature control or variable wattage mode, setting the type of coil in TC mode, including whether the coil is single or dual.
You can also set the “draw effect” to any one of five options, from “min” to “max”. The R-Steam Mini also has a puff counter which can be reset and allows you to set a maximum number of puffs the mod will permit in a 24 hour period. You can defeat this option by scrolling to “Never” in that menu. If the R-Steam Mini stops firing, check the display, you may have that “puff plan” set to a number of puffs that you’ve exceeded. In that case the display will read “Max Puffs Out Of Range.” That has happened to me a couple of times.
The menu system also has options to flip the orientation of the display by 180°, set the contrast, and set the length of time the display will stay lit after you’ve last pressed a button. There are also options that allow you to set the initial resistance of the attached atomizer and adjust the temperature coefficient of resistance (TCR) for each type of temperature control coil. For a fuller description of the menu system, including shortcuts, see our First Look piece on the SMOK R-Steam Mini.
What’s In The Box
- 1 X R-Steam Mini
- 1 X Micro USB charging cable
- 1 X User’s manual
Performance: The SMOK R-Steam Mini does what it’s supposed to do and does it well. Once I got familiar with the menu system it was fairly easy to navigate and to switch between temperature control and variable wattage modes when I swapped tanks. I did find that I had to play with the “Draw Effect” when switching between a temperature control coil and a standard coil, but I finally got it figured out and the mod continued to work flawlessly with either type of tank attached.
Features: SMOK went pretty close to overboard on some features, but did leave one important one out. The menu system is amazing and frankly, provides more options than I’ll ever use. Unless you’re really a tinkerer when it comes to setting up resistance settings, those options are going to be overkill. At least they are for me, but I imagine there are some vapers who are going to love this aspect of the R-Steam Mini.
I do appreciate being able to adjust the display time out and contrast. And that “Draw Effect” is a handy feature. Maximum wattage of 80 watts is usually going to be plenty, so that’s another plus. And the ability to operate in TC mode with three different types of coils, while not the most flexible in the industry, is still more than some temperature control mods permit.
Upgradable firmware is another big plus in the features area. There’s one available for the model I have, but I haven’t tried it yet. I wanted to be sure I could get through this review without messing anything up. That upgrade may be the subject of another piece.
Where the R-Steam Mini is light in the feature area is in the increments of change in TC mode. I prefer being able to adjust temperature in single degree increments. But the R-Steam only permits changes in 10° increments in Fahrenheit and 5° increments in Celsius.
SMOK has equipped the R-Steam Mini with all of the standard safety features, including a 12 second cutoff, overheat, short circuit and low resistance protection. The R-Steam Mini is available in red, black, white or stainless steel.
Quality: Made from high quality zinc alloy, the R-Steam Mini is a solid, well made device. It feels substantial, despite its compact size. The magnetic battery door fits flush and securely. The display is sharp and easy to read, even in outdoor light. The finish on the mod is durable and, so far, has stood up to pretty extensive use without showing any wear.
Looks: The R-Steam Mini is a very attractive device. The color is deep and rich. Its compact size makes the buttons seem bigger and their shape makes them easy to operate and find. The OLED display is big and easy to read. And it looks good no matter what tank I’ve used with it.
Price/Value: Temperature control, 80 watts of power, upgradable firmware and that massive menu system with loads of options, you may expect that the SMOK R-Steam Mini would carry a premium price. Not so. When DirectVapor sent it to me they had it priced at $49.95, and I thought that was a pretty good deal. They’ve since marked that price down to $39.99, which makes it a steal. Even if you never use half of the options in the menu system, this is still a really good deal.
I’ve been using the SMOK R-Steam Mini for about a month. I’ve used it in temperature control mode with the Kangertech Subtank Plus Black Edition and the Kangertech CL Tank 4.0. And I’ve also used it in variable wattage mode with the SMOK TFV4 tank and it has performed excellently with each of them.
You can find mods with higher power outputs and that will work in temperature control mode with a wider variety of coils than the R-Steam Mini. But if you’re looking for a compact sized mod with loads of customizable features, you could do much worse. This is a mod that I see myself keeping in my regular rotation of devices for a long time to come.
DirectVapor supplied the SMOK R-Steam Mini for the purpose of this review. DirectVapor is a Seven Report advertiser.
Order the SMOK R-Steam Mini from DirectVapor.