Sometimes, not often, but sometimes, we can best serve the vape community by offering another look at a vaping device through the eyes of another staff reviewer here at Spinfuel VAPE. The last time we did this it was the Vaporesso Revenger (the original), and today it’s the SMOK TFV12 Prince, next week it will be the Vaporesso Swag. We never really know until we know.
TFV12 Prince - That Second Look
The new SMOK TFV12 Prince deserves that “second look” review not because the opinions of the reviewers are vastly different, but rather because the refinements in the Prince, and its coils, has created and elevated this ‘all-day-every-day’ sub-ohm tank experience to new heights for what a sub-ohm tank is capable of, and far surpasses the TFV12 Cloud Beast King is many areas (but not all).
Achievements in Sub-Ohm Technology
When SMOK launched the TFV12 Cloud Beast King earlier this year, their intention was surely to extend the “Beast” line, creating the largest tank and the most powerful coils yet. And SMOK accomplished the mission, perhaps a little too well.
The TFV12 Cloud Beast King is a huge tank; heavy, and demanding of high wattages, and quite frankly, it looked awkward on smaller high wattage mods. In addition, because of the enormous demands of the ‘King’, it was difficult to vape with all day long. That was SMOK’s biggest mistake; creating a sub-ohm tank too powerful for all-day-every-day use. After a couple hours spent with the King, most Vapers had to set it aside and switch to something that delivered good flavor, tons of vapor, but didn’t quite demand so much from the Vaper, the mod, and the eliquid.
The SMOK Beast Line
The most popular SMOK TFV sub-ohm tank is the TFV8 Big Baby. Many call it the perfect balance between resistance, wattage, capacity, physical size, and extremely good flavor and vapor production. Nipping at its heals is the newer X-Baby, but for the standard bearer in the all-day-every-day arena, it’s still the Big Baby.
That said, the ‘Beast’ line also included the Baby Beast, X-Baby, and Cloud Beast as well, all of which set new standards in sub-ohm performance that few have caught up with. As far as all-day-every-day tanks went, every tank in the SMOK line accommodated the standard…until the TFV12 Cloud Beast King.
It took a complete inward look by SMOK engineers to see where they should go next. The Chinese economy is such that without a constant flow of new products to manufacturer, things would go downhill so fast it would make your head swim. That being the case, the next step for SMOK was to recover from the poor sales of the ‘King’, by creating something really new. Oh, and drop the Beast moniker.
The TFV12 “concept” was a solid one, a good one. And while we might not like to acknowledge it, the biggest player in the performance of a sub-ohm tank is are the Coils.
Any tank, in the SMOK line especially, the Coil system is 75% of the job. Without good coils, any new tank is going to fail, no matter how pretty it is. The other significant player in a good design is the airflow delivery system. The airflow (in and out) play a good 20%… But the rest, the fancy drip tips, the stainless-steel grades, the glass tube (which is never Pyrex), and certainly the colors the tank is created with, all add up to about 5% of the job. High grade materials allow the tank to serve its user longer, but have no immediate effect on the user.
For the TFV12 line to succeed, a new direction had to emerge. SMOK could no longer create larger and larger coils demanding more and more wattage. This time SMOK had to think, create something truly innovative, and then surround it in a beautiful cage. Essentially, the TFV12 Prince is a brand-new Coil line, set it the most beautiful cage SMOK has ever designed.
SMOK designed a new Coil system that allowed for all the flavor and vapor, and then some, of the King and its Coils, without demanding so much power to do it. These new Coils are what make the Prince the real ‘King’, and its cage is the Royal Crown… to succeed with the TFV12 SMOK had to recognize that in order to succeed, Vapers had to ‘want’ to vape with their next TFV12 all day, every day. And the Prince was born.
How do we know all this? SMOK admits it throughout their marketing materials, and on their website. While discussing the new Prince on the product page of the SMOK Store, they printed the following…
“TFV12 Prince Tank, the baby of the super powerful cloud beast king, is not only a powerful one but also an all-round sub ohm tank for daily use.”
With the introduction of the TFV12 Prince, SMOK has delivered the ultimate sub-ohm tank… so far…
What Makes the TFV12 Coils in the Prince Perform So Well?
As I said above, tank body ‘design’ has ‘some’ (but not much) influence on how well a tank is going to perform, but is a much bigger influence on getting buyers interested. But the biggest factor in any tank are the Coils that are designed for that tank.
The TFV12 Prince is so damned good at delivering never-before-seen levels of flavors and vapor from a sub-ohm tank because the proprietary Coils are designed to maximize the production of flavor and dense, aromatic vapor, inside the confines of the TFV12 Prince tank, with roughly half the power demands of the ‘King’.
Even if you could use another SMOK Coil in the Prince, it wouldn’t perform nearly as well as the proprietary coils that are the soul of the Prince.
Appearance Can Get You in the Door
The TFV12 Prince is one of the coolest, if not the coolest, looking sub-ohm tank to come along in quite some time. (Those Cobra drip tips are crying out to me to be a part of my Prince collection!) Combine the awesome design elements, the huge 8mL juice capacity of the concave glass, and of course, the magical performance, and you can see why everyone wants a Prince tank.
The TFV12 Prince Kit and Additional Coils
Purchasing the SMOK TFV12 Prince Kit you get plenty of accessories like O-rings and such, (see below) including a straight, not concave, glass tube (holds less juice). In addition, the buyer gets a total of three (3) Coils, the Prince-Q4, Prince-X6, and the Prince-T10.
There is a total of five (5) different replacement coils for the TFV12 Prince. Once again, these coils are proprietary, and one of the five is the Prince RBA, the other is called the Prince-M4.
Unlike the TFV12 coils for the Cloud Beast King, these 4 replaceable coils all max out at no higher than 110W. The Coils in the TFV12 Cloud Beast King reached up to 350W, with all needing at least 90W for any kind of worthy performance. No one could argue the performance of these Coils, or the King, in the short term, but they sure drained batteries quickly, and devoured e-juice like mad.
Like other SMOK Replacement Coils, the heating element, or wire, in the TFV12 Prince Coils are Kanthal A1. In addition, the wicking material is the same organic cotton all SMOK Coils use. (The RBA Coil can use anything you want)
So, how does the TFV12 Prince outperform every SMOK sub-ohm tank that came before it? Glad you asked…
As far as the coils go, the biggest impact is the huge eliquid ports on the sides of the Prince coils. Never before has a SMOK Coil has such easy access to the liquids in the glass tanks. It is virtually impossible, (as long as they are installed and broken in correctly and the wattage range is adhered to) to get a dry hit with these remarkable coils. No matter how many seconds you pull on the Prince the juice ports will keep up and make sure the heating wire and cotton are soaked in juice.
What About the TFV12 Prince Coil Life?
This is where there is some current misunderstanding about the TFV12 Prince. I’m hearing complaints from a few heavy Vapers about the short life of the TFV12 Q4 0.4-ohm, the Coil that comes pre-installed in the Prince. Below I’ll attempt to explain why the Prince-Q4 may just be the best coil in the bunch, with a rich coil life, and why some may not see it that way.
The wattage range for the pre-installed Prince-Q4 is a low 40-100W, while the “optimal” range is just 60W-80W, a narrow range to be sure.
When the high side of “optimal” is 80W, it doesn’t mean every brand or blend of eliquid can ride along forever. I found the perfect wattage range for the eliquids I vape (always 70/30 VG/PG from various brands) is a respectful 65-70W with the Prince-Q4. In this range, my Prince-Q4 coil has lasted nearly 10 days so far. Yes, it’s now showing some signs that it would be a good idea to exchange it for a fresh one, but most coils I use for the eliquids I prefer last, at most, a week, with the exception of the Uwell Valyrian 0.4-ohm tank. The Valyrian Coils can last 14 days or more.
Keep in mind that every time I mention the Q4 Coil I use its full name, the Prince-Q4. The V12-Q4 used in the Cloud Beast King has a wattage range of 60-190W, is a 0.15-ohm Quad, and its optimal range is 90-160W, already higher than the Prince-Q4’s high end of the optimal range.
Maximizing Coil Life
If you want the longest life possible out of your coils then you need to stay away from super-sweet eliquids. These very sweet, massive vapor producers are the “junk food” in the vape community. The problem is we all like junk food… but vaping junk food juice in moderation we don’t have to kill a $5 coil in 24 hours.
What Really Matters to You?
By now you’ve read, perhaps watched, a lot of reviews about the SMOK TFV12 Prince, and I’m betting that unless you’re not a Direct Lung Vaper (DL), or you have a thing against SMOK, you’re dying to get your hands on this new standard bearer of a sub-ohm tank. You would not be wrong to want one. And if your Mod can output 75W or more, you can enjoy the Prince as your primary, go-to, sub-ohm.
Although this reviewer, and our other staff reviewer are in agreement about the TFV12 Prince, I don’t think either of us regret owning the TFV12 Cloud Beast King. The power requirements are certainly higher than the Prince, but it too is a marvelous sub-ohm tank.
Scoring the SMOK TFV12 Prince
Because the Coils for the TFV12 Prince are proprietary, there might be some unwarranted criticism directed at SMOK. I don’t buy into this criticism because these Coils were created FOR the Prince tank. Using another Coil in the Prince would completely alter the vape experience, while using a Prince Coil in another SMOK Tank would most certainly do the same thing. What SMOK needs to do moving forward is to adopt the best features of the Prince and the Prince Coils, and apply them to new, upcoming sub-ohm tanks.
The SMOK TFV12 Prince would make a great gift for any Vaper this holiday season, not to mention the perfect gift for yourself. You owe it to yourself to see what all the fuss is about the Prince. Highly recommended for any Vaper.
The SMOK TFV12 Prince is available at Vapor Authority