Vaporizers & Vaping

What is a Vape Mod: Easily Explained

Gabi Antunes

Aug 1, 2019

You’ve likely come across the term “vape mod” while researching vaporizers, although vape mods are less common in the world of cannabis vaporizers. These advanced devices typically grant more personalized control over your sessions but there is a significant learning curve to use them properly. If you’ve considered purchasing a vape mod, this guide will help introduce you to the basic concepts behind these devices, as well as alternatives that can achieve a similar level of control without the learning curve.

What is a vape mod?

Common throughout the world of electronic vaporizers, mods are larger devices used to amplify vapor production. While the name suggests that they are attachments or upgrades to an existing vaporizer, they are actually standalone devices, typically box-like in appearance. They tend to support a larger capacity for cannabis material and offer enhanced performance over other, smaller vapes.

Vape mods include functionality that is supposed to enhance vapor flavor, quality, and production. Basically, if you want bigger clouds with more flavor, a vape mod might be the right device for you. These devices do present a more significant learning curve than the simpler alternatives, however, so it’s important to fully understand their capabilities and how they work before deciding to buy a vape mod.

Vape Mod Pens and Advanced Personal Vaporizers – Are They the Same Thing?

When researching vape mods, you might also come across the term “advanced portable vaporizer” or “box mods.” Essentially, these terms are synonyms. Both refer to devices that are larger in size and capacity, as well as more complex than their simpler vape counterparts. As the word “advanced” suggests, these types of devices are only recommended if you are already familiar with vaping and want to kick things up a notch with a more customizable device.

Differences Between Vape Mods vs. Personal Vaporizers

There are several key differences between a typical personal vaporizer, be it a vape pen or a portable vaporizer, and a vape mod. Vape mods tend to have:

  • Bigger batteries: The larger batteries inside a vape mod are essential to their increased power and vapor production. Most portable vaporizers rely on standard 18650 lithium-ion batteries. Vape mods can support larger batteries, including the 20700, 21700, and 26650 batteries. These batteries put out more power than their smaller cousins, allowing for long-lasting performance and powering boosted vapor production.
  • Detailed LCD screens: Due to their larger size and battery, vape mods often have bigger screens than other portable vaporizers. These screens offer insight into your temperature setting and battery life. While these types of screens are only available on the largest portable vaporizers, they are commonplace on box mods.
  • Enhanced vapor flavor: In addition to the denser clouds you can expect from a box mod, many advanced portable vaporizers offer enhanced vapor flavor as well. Vape mods are renown for their ability to promote the most flavorful experience.
  • Customizable coils and tanks: If you’re vaping concentrate material, a vape mod offers a highly personalized experience. A component like a coil can be swapped out at will (provided it’s compatible with the specific device you’ve chosen). Different coils also allow you to control temperature more closely, which is an essential part of the vaping experience.

It’s worth noting that these differences are not universal. Given the customizable nature of vape mods, the characteristics of each are dependent on the components and cannabis material you choose. For example, some coils grant you expanded control over temperature, while your power output remains dependent on the battery inside your vape mod. The key to vape mods is personalization; you can choose the components that best suit your desired experience. Of course, making these decisions means you will likely need vaping experience first so you understand your preferences.

If you’re looking for more control over your session without the steep learning curve of controlling a box mod, consider purchasing a portable vaporizer that covers the bases for you. For example, the PAX 3 offers the capability of vaporizing both dry herb and concentrate materials at any temperature point between 360 degrees and 420 degrees Fahrenheit. If that’s not customizable enough, the PAX 3 can also be connected to the PAX Mobile smartphone application, which allows you to use one of five Dynamic Modes. These modes grant even further control over your sessions, whether you want to boost vapor production, enhance the flavor of your material, or use your vaporizer stealthily in public. Best of all, these settings can be chosen simply in the application, without the in-depth understanding required for effectively and safely using a vape mod.

Should You Use a Vape Mod?

Vape mods require an intimate understanding of vaporizers and how they work. These advanced portable vaporizers can essentially make manual all the settings and controls that are automatic with other vapes, so they are more complex. However, for vapers that want additional control over their session, vape mods are an invaluable companion. Before using a vape mod you should be familiar not just with vaping, but with what occurs inside a vaporizer when you are using it.

For example, controlling temperature with a box mod means more than just increasing or decreasing the degrees at which your material will be vaporized. With many box mods, you can choose the specific level of power delivered to the heating element. That means you should understand how wattage, ohms, and voltage all impact your overall vape experience.

  • Wattage: Wattage refers to the electrical power your battery is capable of outputting to the heating element in your device. In general, the higher the wattage, the higher the vapor production, though the true result depends on several other factors as well. To create dense clouds of vapor with cannabis concentrates, a box mod should at least put out about 150 watts. A higher wattage will drain your battery more quickly, but the overall battery life is related to the milliamp-hour (mAh) rating of your battery.
  • Ohms: The measurement of Ohms, represented by the Omega symbol, refers to the resistance of your coil or heating element. Generally, the lower the Ohms, the more powerful the coil. Understanding the resistance of your coil is key to selecting the correct wattage needed to heat your vaporizer to the desired temperature.
  • Voltage: Voltage is what makes an electrical charge move. Think of voltage as pressure. If your battery can achieve a high wattage output at low voltage, that means it is an efficient battery. If it requires a higher voltage to output the same wattage, it is less efficient. Understanding the relationship between wattage and voltage goes a long way to understanding battery life, a crucial point when vaping.

The other main consideration when choosing whether to use a box mod is understanding how well it is designed to work with cannabis concentrates. Not all box mods work great with cannabis-derived materials, and could require a higher wattage to vaporize effectively.

Vape mods allow you to further tailor your session to your liking, making them an extremely useful tool. However, the level of knowledge required to use a vape mod effectively is significantly higher than with other portable vaporizers. If you’re looking for a “set it and forget it” experience, vape mods might be too advanced for you. If you prefer to be in control of all aspects of your session, though, they could be the perfect device.

Vape mods: the ultimate – but involved – vape customization experience

Using a box mod is all about identifying your personal preferences and then setting the conditions to result in your ideal vaping experience. Many portable vaporizers can be used to meet your needs without the complexity involved in selecting and using a vape mod. However, for more advanced vapers, a box mod offers added customization and personalization over any session. If you find that your portable vaporizer simply no longer meets your needs, it might be a sign that you could benefit from a box mod. However, it’s important to know what you’re getting into first; while mods are rewarding for many vapers, choosing a versatile portable vaporizer could produce your desired session with a great deal less effort.