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Just a few weeks ago, I all but handed the current touchscreen mod crown to the SMOK G-Priv 2. And rightfully so, as it’s a fantastic, high-performing vape device. But in terms of comfort, power and sheer usability, its reign was short-lived, thanks to the stellar Hcigar Towis T180 (Touchscreen) mod. (Available Now at Element Vape)
With impeccable build quality, effortless menu design, and flawless performance, the Hcigar Towis is proof that there’s no reason a touchscreen device needs to be complicated. In fact, I’d go as far as to say the Towis is the first touchscreen device that I’d recommend to new vapers. Let’s see why.
Initial impressions of the HCigar Towis T180 Mod
Maybe I’m experiencing a little “Star Wars” fever, because this is the second Mod in as many weeks that has reminded me of an Imperial Stormtrooper. But my white and black test Model more closely resembles those iconic laser sponges from a galaxy far, far away, and might stand as the only white Mod in my collection that I’ll use regularly.
Though I initially believed the Towis’ touchscreen display was asymmetrical, the optical illusion comes from a polygonal black “frame” around the screen. In reality, the display is a standard large rectangle – albeit a large, bright, functional one. It’s not as large as other competing Mods, but as we’ll see in a bit, it doesn’t need to be.
The large alloy fire key wraps over the top corner of the Towis, and is equally comfortable by users who like an angled grip, or a traditional trigger hold. It’s a subtle move by HCigar, but one that pays dividends in usability.
The thing that jumps most to the user is how much the Towis T180 DOESN’T look like a traditional touchscreen Mod, which have traditionally been boxy, oversized and cumbersome. Of course, more recent devices, like the afore-mentioned G-Priv 2, were certainly more comfortable, but no current touchscreen Mod is more ergonomically pleasing than the Towis.
Operating the HCigar Towis T180 Mod
Simple and effective. These are likely the words that crossed the boardroom table when the design team mapped out the Towis’ touchscreen interface.
Rather than trying to turn the Towis T180 screen into a jumbled mix of information, the device has a unique, compact layout that draws the eyes to the most important data first – namely, wattage/temperature, puff power setting, coil resistance, battery current and voltage. Battery meter and coil type information frame the screen, forming a different, visually interesting display unlike anything else on the market.
HCigar simplified the operations by keeping the screen locked until the user slides it to the right, revealing options to dive deeper into the menus. Want to move to temperature control? One click to choose your coil type. Want to adjust wattage? One click and adjust the onscreen wheel. Want to make some screen personalizations? You guessed it – one click away.
Heck, you can even build a series of five preset settings, which are also available on the bottom of the screen. The Towis T180 doesn’t want you to get lost in operating its menus – it wants you to get through them quickly, so you can resume vaping.
And, to ensure the T180 doesn’t accidentally shift its settings in your pocket, the Mod automatically locks the screen when the clicky fire key is engaged, and doesn’t unlock until there’s a full right-swipe on the responsive display. I have no problems with dedicated lock buttons on touchscreen Mods, but the Towis’ system is so well-designed, it’s hard to imagine the need for more presses.
I will say, the lack of TCR settings was a surprising omission, considering how ample the rest of the settings are on the XT180 chipset. While I may never be an avid TC vaper, TCR adjustments allowed my most complicated builds to function with ease, and I did notice its absence here.
Finally, the protection system is impressive, as the Towis T180 was laser-precise with its atomizer readings, battery power warnings, heat detection, and power supply detection. It’s as safe as they come, furthering my argument for the Towis T180’s viability as a beginner-friendly, but still-advanced Mod.
Vaping the HCigar Towis T180 Mod
Putting the Towis T180 to work was a pleasure. The Mod does a good job reading coil resistance – though it doesn’t auto-switch to TC or wattage Modes, so be careful. But with most of the legwork done from the start, the brilliant user interface responds accurately to the most sensitive touches, so setting and locking a preferred setup is a breeze.
Using my usual array of atomizers, which has been expanded to include the SMOK TFV12 Prince, and the OBS Crius II RTA, I threw a wide range of coil types and resistances at the 180-watt Towis, and was pleased with the results.
First, the usual stress test proved that the Towis was more than capable of hitting its max 180 watts, but the lack of any visible venting on the battery door makes me hesitant to do so. When vaping steadily at max wattage, the Mod became warmer than expected, especially from the front screen. Fearing I’d damage the display, I lowered down to more reasonable wattages, and the problem went away.
At 60-80 watts, using a 24-gauge Kanthal coil on the Crius II, the Towis T180 was far more “at home,” giving me nearly 7 hours of uninterrupted vaping before having to swap cells. More importantly, the vape quality in this range was outstanding, with smooth, fast-ramping hits, even on the “normal” ramp-up setting.
On the “powerful” setting, the Towis gets up to speed faster than most, so prepare for immediate blasts of vapor and flavor, even on lower-resistance coils. (Keep in mind that the Towis T180 has a 1-ohm maximum resistance in temp control Mode, so build accordingly.)
Speaking of which, the Towis T180’s temperature control was flawless. Looking past the ease-of-use, I experienced none of my usual coil reading and temp. spiking issues here. Instead, I clicked, set and vape, just as easily as I did in wattage Mode. Adjusting wattage in TC Mode was also a breeze, letting me craft an ideal, burn-free vape in a fraction of the time a normal Mod would offer.
I think the biggest compliment I can pay the Towis T180 is that it never “feels” like a clunky touchscreen Mod. I never had to worry about accidental adjustments, or oversensitive screens. It just feels like a comfortable, ergonomic Mod – one that vapes extremely well.
Wrapping up … and Score…
I love what HCigar has done with the Towis T180. Instead of being a touchscreen device that also vapes (like many other touch Mods can resemble) the T180 is a vape Mod with the convenience of a touch interface. In fact, other than the lack of TCR and a decided lack of venting, there’s not much to criticize about this surprising Mod.
When I first received the HCigar Towis T180 for review, I fully expected to return it to my editor or gift it to a neighbor. But since the first moment I fired it, it hasn’t left my side. And no, it’s not because it reminds me of Star Wars.
HCigar Towis T180 Specs
HCigar Towis T180 TC Box Mod specs:
- Dual 18650 High-Amp Battery – Not Included
- Wattage Output Range: 5-180W
- Minimum Atomizer Resistance: 0.05ohm
- Temperature Range: 200-600F
- Versatile Temperature Control Module
- Supports Ni200 Nickel, Titanium, and Stainless Steel Heating Elements
- Advanced XT180 TC Chipset
- Large OLED Touch Screen – Ultra-Responsive
- User-Friendly Interface
- Screen-Lock Mechanism
- Oversized Firing Mechanism
- Short Circuit Protection
- Reverse Battery Protection
- Low Resistance Protection
- High Temperature Protection
- Micro-USB Port
- Stainless Steel 510 Connection
HCigar Towis T180 TC Box Mod contents:
- 1 Towis T180 Mod
- 1 Micro-USB Cable
- Instructional Manual