Eleaf Istick Mix Kit
Hello all. A couple of weeks ago I was sent this Eleaf Mix kit by Cortana from Health Cabin for review. I’ll admit from the first day I saw this my interest was piqued. Firstly by the tank with it’s way out design and secondly the mod with its safer, according to Eleaf, on board 2.5 amp charging with it’s C type usb connection. Im a fan of mods that boast safe on board charging so having a go at this was something I looked forward to doing.
So to the review.
The Mix kit comes with the usual as would and should be expected, being, a spare tank glass (not swirly whirly protection) some spare seals, a HW M2 coil and HW N2 coil, a usb cable that does standard as well as C type connection and an instruction booklet.
Ok, the Istick Mix Mod, rated at 160watts and opperating on dual 18650 batteries, will take 25mm tanks without overhang and comes with a resin side and a patterned side in various styles of resin, naturally on the resin side. Apparently these are themed on what appears to be characters you may find in some type of role playing game. Mine came in the Glary Knight theme. Thankfully though that’s as far as it goes and its just the colour scheme which is matched to the characters and there are no actual childish or teen aimed images on the mod itself. To be honest it is a nice looking mod to look at as well as hold. It’s overall size and shape is very very similar to a Drag Mini. Happily that’s where the resemblance to me stops as this Eleaf Mix Mod has no sharp edges and feels much nicer to hold overall. The resin panel side is the battery door and has been extremely well done as it fits really snugly in place held by 2 good strong magnets and has zero movement in any way whatsoever. It’s spot on.
The other side of the mod, which is not hard to notice, has a completely different design from the resin panel. This side has a black and white type of zig zagging maze pattern going on which in many ways reminds me of some type of 70′ perhaps 80’s Pop art. I dont mind it to be honest even though it is the polar opposite to the resin side in appearance. Perhaps this is the reason for the “Pop” in the kits name!?
Located on this side is your usb connection which as mentioned is a C type. This means you dont need to look or feel for which way your plug goes in, it goes in either way around you hold it. I like this, no fiddling or thinking wether you have got it right when it isn’t, it’s always the right way around. Now, on the lead itself is also an attached adapter to turn it into a standard connection if ever the need arises to charge another devise using that same lead but with a different connection to the mod. A clever thoughtful touch I think.
The 510 connection up top is nicely centered sitting almost flush with the top, with no visible gap between the tank base and the 510. It is held in place by 2 screws and has no movement whatsoever, seeming to be nicely secure. Again, by my measurements will take 25mm tanks without any overhang issues.
The buttons are the usual deal. Top the fire and below the screen the two adjusters. Now, here is my only gripe with the Mod. The fire button rattles if you rattle the mod. Not excessively to be any way near being a deal breaker but it does. In fact the way I found out was going shopping and putting the mod in my cars cup holder slash vape holder. My car is a deisel and the typical deisel vibrations can cause things that rattle to do so. This rattles in my car at idle and at first I thought it was something loose in my dash or glove box! Till I realised it was the fire button. So if you get one of these, or have one, before you pull your car apart looking for that rattle sound, check you’re mod first. It just may be that. In normal operation and use though it doesn’t bother me at all nor create an issue. But it did need mentioning.
The battery door section. Like I said the battery door is a really well designed one that is a perfect no movement fit. Inside though could be improved a little. Firstly, and it’s not like it’s the end of the world, but the battery orientation markers are just dull black and part of the compartment. They really should these days be highlighted as many others are now doing. The other thing is fitting them is a bit on the tight side. Care does need to be taken fitting them so as not to damage your battery wraps. If not I’m sure they will be sooner or later as it really is that tight a fit. You do get to know how to but its like “ok, I put them in this far, not with the end all the way down, push a little…” I’m sure you get the drift. Just don’t go pushing them in without care. They do though come out much easier than going in thankfully with the use of the ribbon so that is a little win back in the right direction.
Ok, so the screen isn’t the biggest on the block but it appears to be just right aesthetically for the Mod. I wondered at one stage “should it have been bigger?” But when I use it and set it down on the table in front of me it just looks right. Not too big, not to small. Goldilocks one might say. Inside, or indoors, it’s plenty bright enough to veiw the settings, though outside on a sunny day you will need to shade it a bit to read it. From left to right in normal use you have your 2 battery level indicators,then stacked on top of each other, Coil ohms, Voltage and a choice of Puffs, Seconds or Amps. Your Puff’s or Seconds can both be reset whenever you wish. Next of course is your main one being your Wattage level.
In the Sub Menu you have the following. Puff/Seconds/Amp choice, Stealth Mode (represented by what looks like a ghost icon), Preheat, Logo, Version and Individual Battery voltage. These are all accessed by pressing and holding the Fire button and the Up button for a few seconds at the same time. Three quick clicks of the Fire button on it’s own will take you into the Temp Mode section of NI, TI or SS along with 3 memory modes. Entering any mode you want to, or to change anything, works seamlessly and easily and I have never felt lost or wondering what to do next. It’s easy and simple.
Another thing operationally worth a mention is that if the tank is taken off the mod it will automatically return to the default wattage setting of 30 watts. Its not a bad thing really for if you changed a coil you wont accidentally blast it at a higher wattage when running it in and wanting to ramp the power up slowly. I should mention too that this mod fires nice and quick too with almost no perceivable lag. I say almost as there is a smidgen but even though, its faster than many others I have tried. If there were grades of say , slow, medium, quick and fast then I’d place the Mix in the quick category.
If I had one thing that I feel it’s missing though it would definitely be a Curve mode, I do like having that feature. Ah well, can’t have it everything I guess!
As mentioned already the Mix Mod comes with 2.5 amp capabilty fast safer charging, according to Eleaf. Now, I am no expert by a long shot in this field so the only way I can try this out is to use the on board charging and test the batteries immediately after a charge and compare the readings with that of an external charger doing the same. So this was what I saw.
After allowing the batteries to run down half way I used the usb charge option then immediately tested the batteries. They read, battery 1 – 4.15v, battery 2 – 4.16v. Doing the same using my Efest charger I was pleasantly surprised to see battery 1 – 4.15v, battery 2 – 4.14v. Virtually identical charge. No heat was felt at any stage of charging via the USB.
Well, the Ello Pop tank is pretty hard not to notice sporting it’s colourful spiral wrap glass protection. It does go well with the overall look of the kit. But I’m sure some may find it a bit attention drawing in some ways. It really does command attention! Thankfully Eleaf have supplied the spare glass without the spiral wrap giving the user the option of just a plainer looking tank. I did though wonder how well attached the spiral wrap protection was on this so put it to the test. I purposely tried to scratch and prise it off using my finger nail, quite forcefully at one stage, and it really wont come off easily I can tell you. You wont ever be seeing that spiral wrap peel off of the glass, I’m pretty sure of that.
I should add though, and almost forgot, that using very clear juices you can struggle to see the juice level at a glance as that level will just be almost indistinguishable against the outer wrap lines. What you will find yourself doing is tilting the tank so as to see where its at breaking that visual level blend with the wraps.
The fill section is a slide system but with the added protection against accidental opening by utilising a lift and slide movement. You simply lift the top by its side and slide it open. It will not open unless you do this which is quite a good design. I would liked to have seen the marker showing where this is done on the tank top highlighted rather than just the blend in marker it has but that tiny gripe doesn’t detract from being a very good design. Filling I have had zero issues with overspills so overall it is a good system.
But capacity. This non TPD version which I have is a stated 6.5 ml capacity. Actual measured by syringe capacity is nowhere near 6.5 and is just 4.5 to where one would fill and stop. I do wish manufactuters would stop overstating tank capacities. It’s either 6.5 or it isn’t, and it isn’t, it’s 4.5!
So the coil. The supplied HW M2 which came fitted was my pick of the two. It lasted very well for a good 90 ml of super sweet berry juice and had not dropped in flavour when I removed it to try the HW N2 coil. There was no gunking of the mesh and the cotton looked fine. The vape took a good tank full to get up to speed but when it did it was a lush tasty vape at 65watts. The N2 was also nice but I felt the M2 was just that bit better. I guess that’s personal taste though and others may well find it the other way around. Both are rated at 40 to 90 watts and boast leak proofing and self cleaning technology. I will say that I did not experience any hint of leaks and as mentioned earlier the coil appeared very clean when I removed it.
Overall I found the Eleaf Istick Mix Kit to be pretty good. Yes it has a few things that could, should be improved such as the fire button rattle, easier battery fitting and marker on the tank lift section. But there are also some great positives such as the tank fill lift design, fast balanced even charging, great flavour and good coil life, solid fit battery door and if it’s your thing the tank glass protection. Not to mention the C type usb connection which I found so much better than the standard type.
Many thanks to Cortana from Health Cabin for letting me try this great little Mix Kit.
Eleaf Istick Mix Kit