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The Disappointing iJoy Diamond & Captain X3S Sub-Ohm Kit Review

“ELEMENT
Element Vape

If you didn’t look too hard while someone, a friend say, put the Vaporesso Revenger the OBS Bat, and the iJoy Diamond PD270 Starter Kits side by side, you most likely would not be able to distinguish which was which at first glance. However, if you move a little bit closer, the differences would be begin to reveal themselves. All three all familiar looking, yet different all the same. Unfortunately however, after vaping the three of them for a few minutes, you would discover the iJoy Diamond and it’s vape tank, the Captain X3S, is the most flawed Starter Kit of the three. In some ways the iJoy Diamond Kit strikes me as though it were made with 3-year-old technology, not 2018, and it shows.

This is not iJoy’s first foray into an area of the vaping industry usually laid open for the likes of SMOK, Eleaf, Joyetech, and WISMEC. In fact, if you pop over to Element Vape’s iJoy product page, you would find many examples of iJoy copying all four vendors with similar chassis and tank designs, but iJoy always seems to try and one-up these devices with, mostly, adopting the 2X700 battery platform. And they are adopting the platform faster than any other manufacturer. Hell, iJoy even has their own branded iJoy 2×700 batteries to accompany their products (mostly). They have a vested interest in getting the vape community moved over to the 2X700 platform.

On the Element Vape product/category page, just looking without reading, I see a copy of the Joyetech eVic Primo Mini (reviewed here), but with a 20700 cell. Then there is the WISMEC Reuleaux (reviewed here) lookalike, the iJoy Genie (reviewed here), or is it the iJoy Captain X3 (here), (which has a very TFV12 Prince-like Sub-Ohm in the Captain X3 Kit) and it goes on and on, right down to their own iJoy branded versions of the SMOK TFV8 and herelines, as well as copied Squonk Mods, RDA’s, and many more.

Look, I get it, happens all the time, there is no such thing an original idea already. In the vape community every configuration of a Mod or a Tank was being created and recreated many times, At least in iJoy’s world, mods and tanks are pushed forward and are not simply inspired by other’s designs. They seem larger, not counting the often-used 2X700 platforms (and inclusions of the 2X700 cells in the Kits) but larger in aspirations, pushing the wattage frontier to a hand-held vaping device, or creating coils that are capable of creating flavor and vapor at wattage few others can achieve, and frankly, with color combinations, finishes, textures, and prints, never seen before.

iJoy Diamond & Captain X3S Sub-Ohm Kit Review BY SPINFUEL VAPE

Getting Back to the iJoy Diamond Starter Kit

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When I saw photos of the iJoy Diamond Starter Kit for the first time I was more than impressed. Hell, when I read the preview by one of our own writers I was more impressed.  This Mod and Tank looked like iJoy’s first attempt to go mainstream since the iJoy Elite PS2170 (here). No far-out colors or finishes, just a few plain colors, glossy black, white, and blue (for Mod and Vape Tank), and while iJoy chose to stay with their own battery line, its 20700 line, this Revenger/OBS Bat lookalike pushes some 234 watts of power and a minimum ultra-low resistance of 0.06-ohms, using just two cells. (for some reason, I’ve seen this exact kit on various vendor shelves sporting 234W as well as 237W, this review unit goes to 234W)

On paper, or more accurately, on the computer/tablet/smartphone screen, the specs for the Diamond Mod sound mighty good;

  • Dual 20700 High-Amp Battery – Not Included
  • Optional Dual 18650 High-Amp Battery w/ Sleeve Adapter
  • Maximum Wattage Output of 234W
  • Minimum Atomizer Resistance: 0.06ohm
  • Temperature Control Range: 200-600F
  • Plenty of safety protections

For the accompanying Sub-Ohm Vape Tank, the Captain X3S, its specs are not as impressive;

  • 4.2mL Maximum Juice Capacity
  • Stainless-Steel Construction
  • Borosilicate Glass Tank
  • Large Dual Bottom Airflow Slots
  • Retractable Sliding Top-Fill Design

But, specifications don’t tell the whole story. Only spending time with all these Mods and Tanks can we really give you an honest, unbiased narrative review. Below, I’ll begin to tell you what you can really expect from the iJoy Diamond Starter Kit. It may be enough to make you want to pop over to Element Vape right now and buy one of these Starter Kits, all three colors are in stock at the time of this review, and the price of the Starter Kit is surprisingly low when compared to similar Kits from Vaporesso and OBS.

The Real iJoy Diamond Starter Kit

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A couple of Chinese manufacturers are hard-pressed to make the 2×700 cell platform the next standard in Box Mods. Without a doubt, iJoy leads the way. Thankfully, iJoy is still either including the new 20700 cells in the package (the Diamond Kit has a Kit with the cells, and a Kit without the cells), or providing full silicon sleeves for users to slip in the still-standard 18650 cells. Because the Chinese own the electronic cigarette (ugh, I hate those two words strung together), if the group of manufacturers decide to all go 2X700, nothing we do is going to stop them. But you need to understand these new cells better before committing to them. Bigger doesn’t always mean better.

The 2X700 battery, both the 20700 and 21700, do not extend the battery life of any Mod for any significant length. They are used for the purpose of providing a bit more maximum power, say 225W to 234W. While very few Vapers ever vape at the maximum wattage anyway, the user might get 30 extra minutes of battery life in the 60W-80W vape range. In my own experience of using all three cell platforms, I always get the best battery life in every Mod I use with the superior Nitecore 3100mAh 35A cell. (and no, we don’t own Nitecore stock, nor are we paid commission on any product, much less the Nitecore brand)

The iJoy Diamond Mod

Battery life with a pair of iJoy 20700 cells that are typically included in these Kits are the 3000mAh 3.7v 40A cells, selling at Element Vape for $12.95 a piece. They run a couple of bucks higher than their 18650 counterparts, except for the Nitecore 3100mAh battery, which is about the same price.

I ran battery life checks with a pair of the iJoy 20700’s and a pair of Nitecore 3100mAh in the supplied silicon sleeves, using the Diamond’s Captain X3S Sub-Ohm Vape Tank. Each time, at just 64W, the Nitecore lasted more than 30 minutes longer than the 20700 cells. If you decide to buy this kit, make use of the silicon sleeves and stick with the 18650’s unless you have an abundance of 20700 cells already.

Like the Vaporesso Revenger and OBS Bat Mods, the iJoy Diamond has a removable magnetic back panel for accessing the dual cells. The 20700 batteries insert easily, easier than the silicon wrapped 18650’s, and the battery door snaps back on quickly. And, although I wouldn’t say that either battery type causes “rattle”, I can say that the unit I reviewed, the back door, while secure, felt a tad loose. The Revenger and BAT had no such loose door, but let’s not forget that both of those Mods use only 18650’s whereas the Diamond must be capable of using both. The loose feel might just be a tiny size accommodation by iJoy. At no time during my tests did the battery door on the Diamond come off by accident, or made any significant shift. But it’s noticeable.

The Disappointing Screen

This being 2018m, and the iJoy Diamond being a new device, the screen seems out of time.  First, the size of the display is 0.96inch, and it is an OLED Monochrome display. Not a bit of color, nor larger than 1”. It reminds me of the older SMOK Alien display, certainly not the TFT Color displays we see almost every day. The 0.96” display has a vertical stack showing the output mode, the temperature of power level, the output current, atomizer resistance, puff counter, individual battery indicators, and it has a stealth feature that allows the user to shut down the monochrome lights. (Does any ever use stealth mode?)

iJoy Diamond Body

If iJoy wanted their next new device to be truly cutting edge, why not use color displays like so many others, or even a Function button instead of the older Fire Button and Plus/Minus button set up? While the iJoy Diamond does utilize a center 510-connector, it’s the type of connector that has no outer stainless-steel ring, just the stainless-steel connector hole cut out of the top of the mod. This connector type has always been a pain for me, getting the tank threads to grab on to the connector takes more than a few tries, and without a ring of stainless steel it never quite feels flush when the tank is screwed in, and then there is the worry that I may have overtightened it in order to achieve some kind of flush-ness.

As for the aesthetics of the iJoy Diamond; it is a beautiful Mod. iJoy says the chassis (body) was inspired by the multi-faceted diamond cutting technology. Okay, I guess so. Nothing more to add there except I do like its sharp angles.

The iJoy Diamond PD270 Box Mod’s chipset is designed by IWEPAL. A respected chipset, especially for its accurate temperature control aspects, and its USB port is for charging and firmware updates as well.

The Captain X3S Sub-Ohm Vape Tank

The Captain X3S is 25mm in width, has a 4.2 mL juice capacity and uses the same coils as its bigger sibling. The pre-installed coil head in the Kit is the 0.4-ohm X3-C1 Dual Coil, with a wattage range of 60-90 Watts, additionally, the Kit includes an X3-C2 (a new coil) 0.3-ohm coil with a range of 60-100 Watts.

The Captain X3S uses the fairly standard Delrin 810 wide-bore drip tip that narrows from bottom to top, instead of a Resin drip tip. Strangely enough for iJoy, there is nothing spectacular about this vape tank. In fact, my review unit’s tank has some issues that are either indicative of the entire number of Captain X3S tanks, or a problematic anomaly.

From its appearance the Captain X3S looks like a million other vape tanks; the slide-to-fill top cap, the coil head treaded into the base of the tank, the base dual airflow slots, and so on. The problems I experienced could very well be the fault of its coils, not the design of the tank. Two issues caused me to rank this sub-ohm vape tank lower than most would.

Spitback/Gurgling – The X3-C1 Dual Coil has a metal (SS?) plate sitting atop the vertical coil and cotton. That being the case, I decided to opt toward placing a drop of e-juice on the side of the large e-juice ports and not on top, into the coil structure. But first, I unscrewed the coil head to make sure it was not overtightened or experienced a skipped thread. After reseating the coil, priming the large ports, I put the tank together and filled it with 4.2mL. Then I let it sit for an hour, taking only a few strong pulls through the drip tip without touching the fire button.

When I deemed the tank ready for vaping, I set the wattage to 40W, well below the 60W-80W range. Immediately I experienced furious spitback and pops, and it was hot drops of juice blistering my tongue, something I haven’t experienced in 2 years, at least. I attempted to rid it of spitback by blowing through the drip tip to expel any e-juice that might have somehow crept into the structure. Sadly, there was no juice to expel.

To this very day, both coils produce spitback, though the X3-C2 produces very little spitback. The other issue is the dreaded “gurgling” sound with the X3-C1 coil. This gurgling sound is at its worst when the tank is full, less so when it’s at the half-way mark.

The so far incurable spitback is enough for me to avoid this sub-ohm vape tank, but we should talk about flavor and vapor production…

In the first hour I was inclined to believe the vertical coils were stainless-steel, not Kanthal. The reason was the flavor fidelity was a bit off. However, the next morning the flavor fidelity hit Kanthal levels, meaning the flavor production was very good. Vapor production is also good, but certainly not a “massive cloud maker”.

Wrapping Up and the Score

The iJoy Diamond Starter Kit Verdict

I like the Diamond Mod, it’s design, it’s look and feel. But the loose battery door when using the 20700 batteries is annoying to say the least. I’ll continue using it, but only with the silicon sleeves and the Nitecore batteries. Even so, I will not be using the Captain X3S Vape tank.

 

I’ve used other iJoy sub-ohm vape tanks that were absolutely marvelous in every way, so I don’t know why the Captain X3S fails so miserably. Spitback and gurgling are symptoms of tanks from 2014/2015, not 2018. Something went wrong with this tank, and if it is this particular review tank then I am open to hearing more about it from our readers. If it’s not the tank, it’s the X3 Cores, though they performed well in other Captain tanks. Unfortunately for iJoy, the Diamond Starter Kit will not make it onto the Spinfuel VAPE Best Mods or Vape Tank lists.

The iJoy Diamond Starter Kit requires a few scores, as laid out below:

iJoy Diamond Mod 20700 cells – B- (loose battery door is not pleasant)

iJoy Diamond Mod w/18650 + silicon sleeves – B

iJoy X3S Sub-Ohm w/X3-C1 Coil – D-

iJoy X3S Sub-Ohm w/X3-C2 Coil – C-

Overall Score – “There are better choices out there. The Vaporesso Revenger or Switch Kits are two. The OBS Bat is another. I just cannot recommend this Kit.”

Specs and Contents

iJoy Diamond PD270 234W Box Mod:

  • Dual 20700 Battery Platform
    • New 234W Chip Set
      • Chip Designed by IWEPAL
    • 5 to 234W Output
    • Reverse Polarity Protection
    • 18650 Battery Adapter Included
      • Batteries Sold Separately
    • Firmware Upgradable
  • Full Temperature Control
    • Titanium Support
    • Ni200 Nickel Support
    • Stainless Steel 316 Support
    • TCR Mode
      • Three Memory Modes
    • Atomizer Resistance Lock
    • 200 to 600 Degrees Fahrenheit
    • 0.05 ohm Minimum Atomizer Resistance
  • Large OLED Display Screen
    • Vertical Stack
    • Output Mode
    • Output Temperature
    • Output Power
    • Output Voltage
    • Output Current
    • Atomizer Resistance
    • Stealth Mode
    • Puff Counter
    • Individual Battery Life Indicators
  • Three Button Control Face
  • Chassis Inspired by Multi-Faceted Diamond Cutting Technology
  • Magnetized Battery Access Door
    • Accepts Two High Amperage 18650 or 20700 Batteries (sold separately)
  • 2A Maximum Charging
    • Micro USB Update and Charging Port
  • Spring Loaded Stainless Steel 510 Connection
  • PCB Temperature Overheat/Low Power/PCB Atomizer Short/ No Atomizer/Low Resistance/Ohms Too High Protection

iJoy Diamond PD270 Dimensions:

  • 92mm by 49mm by 34.5mm

iJoy Captain X3S Sub-Ohm Tank Features:

  • 25mm Diameter
  • Sliding Top Fill System
    • Pour to Fill
    • 4.2ml Maximum Capacity
  • X3 Coil Family
    • X3-C1
      • 0.4 ohm
      • Dual Coil
      • 60 to 90W
    • X3-C2
      • 0.3 ohm
      • 60 to 100W
  • Dual Adjustable Bottom Airflow
    • 14mm by 3mm Each Airslot
    • Fully Closeable
  • Wide Bore Delrin 810 Drip Tip
  • 510 Drip Tip Adapter

iJoy Diamond PD270 Kit Includes:

  • One iJoy Diamond PD270 234W Box Mod
  • One iJoy Captain X3S Sub-Ohm Tank
    • 810 Delrin Drip Tip
    • 510 Drip Tip Adapter
  • One X3-C1 0.4 ohm Coil Head
  • One X3-C2 0.3 ohm Coil Head
  • Spare Glass Tank Section
  • Spare Parts Pack
  • 18650 Battery Inserts
  • One QC Micro USB Cable
  • User Manual
  • Warning Card

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About The Author

All original content is written and produced for our readers by the Spinfuel Staff. The writing staff includes Julia Hartley-Barnes, Keira Hartley-Barnes, Tom McBride, Jason Little, Melanie Hendrix, and Dave Foster. Spinfuel also publishes guest contributors on occasion. All original content is protected by US copyright laws.

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