This long-awaited ProVape ProVari review, and the accompanying ‘Interview’ with the team of ProVape, will, I hope, allow the ProVari to be appreciated by an even larger audience of vapers than it has today. In addition, perhaps I can put a little more “realism” into future discussions about a legendary PV (Personal Vaporizer).

“Designed and Manufactured in America by ProVape”

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Introduction

I must admit that I was initially drawn to the famous ProVape ProVari because of all the reverence that was being paid to it from experienced vapers. ProVape ProVari Review

 

I would often get involved in a discussion, both in real-life or on the net, with someone talking about eCigarettes, juice, vaping, and everything that goes along with vaping, and without fail the discussion would always include statements like,

 “Yes, but then there is the ProVari.” or “No, the ProVari says otherwise”, or some other iteration of ProVari reverence. In too many of these discussions the word “ProVari” becomes a conversation “stopper”, and to me that’s an awful lot of burden to place upon a single vaping device. It didn’t seem fair to ProVape. So I wanted to find out if all this attention was warranted.

 

As it turned out… it is.

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This long-awaited ProVape ProVari review, and the accompanying ‘Interview’ with the team of ProVape, will, I hope, allow the ProVari to be appreciated by an even larger audience of vapers than it has today. In addition, perhaps I can put a little more “realism” into future discussions about a legendary PV (Personal Vaporizer).

Does any vaping device deserve to be used as the Gold Standard over and over and over again? Read on and find out what the Staff of Spinfuel eCigs Magazine learned during the review process.

“We are eager to dig deep and peel off layer upon layer of legend and mystique, to find out just how good the ProVari is, and why it’s so good. This review will, hopefully, answer any question you may have about the ProVari and perhaps even help you decide if there is a ProVari in your future.”

The accompanying interview should be read as well in order to get the viewpoint of the people that made the product, and stand behind it. The interview is revealing, and inspiring, and it makes you feel good about the quality of American made products.

The Review

Product: The ProVape ProVari Mini in Black, latest software, running with the standard batteries provided by ProVape.

Accessories Used In This Review:

  • VapeDudes “Texas Tuff Tanks – single coil boge 3.0-ohm cartomizers inside”
  • Boge 510-thread 3.0 ohms standard resistance cartomizers on their own
  • Gingers e-juice; Carolina Blend, Silk Road, Peaches N Cream, Vanilla Sunrise
  • Halo Cigs e-juice; Torque 56, Tribeca & Tiki juices
  • Johnson Creek e-juice; Domestic, Rainier, Solstice, and Espresso,
  •   All juices were high nicotine blends, from 1.8 to 2.4.

Price: $211.95 (Starter Kit Price)

The ProVari™ Starter Kit Includes:

  • • 1 – ProVari Variable Voltage Electronic Vaporizer with a 510   connection, in a satin silver finish (ours was black)
  • • 2 – 18490 AW high-drain batteries
  • • 1 – Battery Charger – Charges two batteries at a time
  • • 1 – 5 pack of Boge 3-ohm standard resistance cartomizers
  • • 1 – Metal drip tip for use with the cartomizers.

Results: (Why wait until the end of the review?)

Without a doubt, there is no better way to enjoy serious vaping, under any circumstances, with any e-juice, using any compatible cartomizer, DCT, atomizer/cartridge than with a ProVape Provari.

Performance, including flavor and vapor production, battery life, balance, and the ‘look n feel’ is so outstanding as to be as good as the legend dictates.

After 3 weeks of very heavy use, more than 190ML of e-juice passed through this PV, more than a dozen cartomizers, 2 atomizers, and several cartridges, the ProVari Mini never blinked, never stuttered, it didn’t even worked up a sweat. We tried and tried to find a single weakness and we failed.

The Nutshell

Question: What’s the “magic”, or the “thing” about the ProVari that causes its owners, whether knowingly or unknowingly, to never complain about performance?

Answer: In the simplest terms, no matter how much battery power you have remaining in your ProVari you will continue to vape at the exact voltage you’ve set, right up until the battery shuts down. Voltage does not change unless you change it.  ProVape uses a “Boost Circuit” technology to maintain voltage output, this is the same tech found in the Toyota Pruis Hybrid automobile. This one thing, above all else, provides the absolute most consistent vaping experience you can possibly have.

The Narrative:

With a background in such varied industries as high-tech, computers, and military engineering, the founders of ProVape set out to build an American made, American manufactured vaping product that their customers would enjoy for years. A PV that could stand up to the “use and abuse” of its owners, and would serve to remind the world that vaping products can be designed and manufactured in the United States that can out perform every vaping device on the planet.

The Particulars

The ProVari Mini is, in the simplest terms, a shorter version of the standard famed ProVari. The only difference is the use of a smaller battery, a shorter tube, and a different finish. Performance, durability, and so forth match the standard size ProVari in every way.

The end-cap of the ProVari mini can be substituted with an end-cap (the 18490 extension cap) that will allow you to switch out the shorter battery for the standard 18650 ProVari batteries that extends the length of the ProVari as well as the time between charges. The extension cap is sold separately, as well as the longer battery, and is completely optional. We did not review the extension cap or the longer battery.

Viable Voltage

There are a few Variable Voltage (VV) devices on the market, but none of them can match the sophisticated circuitry in the ProVari. With VV circuitry designed by ProVape you can move through the various voltage setting in 0.1 increments, from 2.9v to 6.0 volts. The circuitry ensures the accuracy of the voltage so that if you choose to vape at 3.6v or 4.1v, it will output at that value at less than 1% variance, and will not fluctuate regardless of the life left in the battery. The state-of-the-art electronics maintains the voltage independent of the battery level.

A Lighted Push-button for All Functions

The ProVari is not cluttered with various buttons that control various functions of the device. You are presented with a single button that controls various functions tied into the number of “button clicks” you use;

  • Press 5 times for Power Up (Pu)
-Increases voltage in 0.1v increments

  • Press 7 times for Power Down (Pd)
-Decreases voltage in 0.1v increments

  • Press 9 times for Power On/Off (Po)
-Turns the device on and off

  • Press 11 times for Check Battery (Cb)
-Check remaining battery level in volts

  • Press 13 times for Atomizer Ohms (Ao)
-Check the resistance of your atomizer or cartomizer in Ohms

  • Press 15 times to LED button On/Off (Lo)
-Toggle the lighted LED button between full, dim, and off

For some users it may take a day or two to memorize the number of clicks for all the functions, but for most of us it will be an easy transitions over the VV units that come with multiple, and often cluttered, buttons. With normal use the majority of users will use only a couple of the functions on an average day. When it comes to choosing a multiple button device or a single button approach, I prefer the minimalist approach of the single button.

Points of Interest

When the battery runs low the lighted button will begin to blink. While you are still vaping at your chosen voltage it is still a good idea to swap out the battery with a freshly charged one. (Remember, the ProVari ships with 2 batteries so swapping out batteries should never become an issue).

The AccuSet technology (created by ProVape) will constantly monitor voltage output, with accuracy to 1% or better over the life of the product.

Each ProVari will “autotune” itself so that your settings will always be accurate and worry-free.

Example:

Say you’re using one of the new Vape Dudes Texas Tuff Tanks, as well did, and its filled with Ginger’s e-Juice “Fireball” flavor, and you’ve discovered that a setting of 4.4v  brings out the maximum flavor and vapor for this particular setup. That setting can be used over and over again with the same results for this setup. Over time, you’ll learn what settings work best what flavors/juices and it will take a second or two to set up.

In addition, you can inform a friend that also owns a ProVari that this particular setup is excellent and that he or she should try it. Because of the exacting circuitry your friend can duplicate your setup and get the same experience that you do. This is just not possible with any other VV unit on the market today, at least I don’t know of any.

Safety

Safety is a huge factor for ProVape and it shows in the design and manufacture of every ProVape product. The ProVari Mini has so many safety features that any type of “issue” you might have with safety is virtually impossible. These safety measures include;

  • Off/On mode
  • 16-second Cutoff (more than enough for a maximum puff)
  • Short Circuit/Atomizer Protection
  •  Reverse Battery Protection – My very first experience with the ProVari mini had me trying to place the battery in the wrong way, only to discover that it was impossible to do so.
  • Battery Monitoring/Over-Discharge Protection – The ProVari will automatically shut off when the battery is discharged.
  • 3.5 amps Limitation – Should your ProVari detect excessive over-current condition it will instantly shut down and you will receive an E1/E2 warning on the LED display.
  • Thermal Monitoring – An E3 warning comes up if your ProVari detects a temperature of the unit that is higher than it should be. And it will not turn itself back on until that temperature falls below the safety level.

The technology used in the ProVape product line provides a lifelong experience of the above features, and much more. With a device like the ProVari, which was designed and built to last years. How could it be otherwise?

Unlike the Chinese manufactures ProVape never cuts corners, never contemplates finding a “shortcut” or “cheaper” method to produce the ProVari. Military-grade electronics are vital to the success of every ProVari made by ProVape. To get the to the level of sophistication of a ProVari it has to be made in America.

My Real-World Experience

All of the features, technology, manufacturing standards and all the rest of their state-of-the-art abilities that make the ProVari the most respected PV on the market would mean nothing without the real-world results of an every end-user, such as myself. So, how was it to have a ProVari in my life? Exceptional. Inspiring. And a reminder that American Made still means excellence.

The Diary of a User (me)

Day One“Upon receiving my ProVari Mini I went through each of the items and printed out the manual on ProVape’s website. I’m going to urge every owner of the ProVari to download and print out this manual, there is vital information in it that we must not overlook.”

I read the manual while the batteries charged. (The Charger fits both batteries at the same time so I charged them both) While the batteries showed power when I received them I still charged them in order to begin the “ProVari Experience” with two fully charged batteries.

I began the review process by using one of the supplied 510 Boge Standard Resistance (3.0-ohm) cartomizers. Since I did not order ProVape e-juice I used my favorite (then) e-Juice, Johnson Creek “Original”, an amazing juice with a nutty, sweet tobacco flavor that just melts in your mouth. I also did not yet have my “Plunger Kit” made by “My Freedom Smokes” so I dripped in the e-juice in with a glass eyedropper that came with the JC juice.

(A tip; especially with a VV unit, it is wise to make sure that the cartomizer is completely soaked with juice. For me, that meant filling the carto and letting it sit for at least an hour, then applying another few drops to fully saturate the cartomizer. To do otherwise risks burning the built-in atomizer and tasting a horrible burnt taste)

When I judged the cartomizer to be saturated with e-juice, I blew out any remaining juice that slipped into the center hole, and attached it to the ProVari. I started off with a setting of 3.3v and worked up to 4.1v. Through this short experimentation I found that, for me, the perfect setting was 3.9v (other people I have talked to since use a setting of 3.7v). Now, whenever I use a Boge 3.0-Ohm carto I know that when I use the setting of 4.1v (with the same eLiquid) I’m off and running, and I could tell my friends to set their ProVari at same voltage,  if they are using the same carto/juice, just as they told me to try 3.7v.

(A tip: ProVape recommends that you stay away from LR (Low Resistance) cartomizers because they will limit the voltage options. Pushing an LR carto can cause E1 and E2 errors, as well as poor performance.)

I vaped this set up for a few hours throughout the day. It was exceptional. My JC Juice never tasted better.

Day Two

The next day I decided to up the experience by switching to a  Texas Tuff Tank Pro3 by VapeDudes. These tanks are not only attractive and long lasting; they provide easy access to the tank by removing a small screw on the upper side of the tank. Fill a syringe with 3ML of juice, insert the syringe and push in the juice. Easy Peasy.

The Tuff Tank Pro3 contains a Boge 3.0-ohm Standard Resistance Cartomizer, so the only difference between this setup and the one above is the tank. Having said that, I found that I could push up the Voltage to 4.4v with the ProVari, a little higher than an out-of-box Boge 3.0 ohm, but it was a terrific vape. A full-bodied flavor and vapor so thick it was the consistency of a fine cigar. Still, being the same cartomizer I was confused about being able to push the voltage a bit. I found out later that the variance in this batch of cartomizers were off by 1 or 2 ohms either way. At least now I understand why.

The e-juice I chose for this setup was the Halo Cigs Tribeca juice, a dry yet sweet tobacco flavor that was only enhanced by using the ProVari Mini. I’ve used this juice in several devices and the best experience by far was with the ProVari Mini. I vaped all day with this setup and only had to refill the tank that evening, around 10PM.

Day Three:

For day three I thought I’d reach even further into High Voltage territory by using a DCT supplied by my friend Wendy Bivona of Premium eCigs, an online and brick n mortar store in Melbourne Florida. The product was a 6ML Clearomizer, with a resistance between 2.7v and 3.0 v that I could easily push into the 4+ volt range.

The e-juice this time was Ginger’s e-Juice (100% American Made Juice), I chose their “Carolina Blend”, a semi-sweet tobacco that I use every day, many times it is my all-day choice. Sometimes it’s hard to decide between Carolina and JC Original, so I keep two (2) DCT’s full of each so that I can swap out on a moment’s notice.  This was perfect for the 6ML Clearomizer because since I do vape this everyday I knew I could fill it once and forget about refilling for a while.

I pushed the Clearomizer to 3.9v, then 4.2v. The ProVari provided an absolutely beautiful vaping experience by giving me a thick and luscious vapor full of flavor. As you can see, though the ProVari is capable of being used at 6v I never did fine the need to go much past 4.5v to 4.6v at any time.

I should note that at this point in the review process I had zero issues with the ProVari. Never unexpectedly ran out of battery power either. It just works, period.

Day Four:

Although I was enjoying the ProVari “experience” in a way I have never enjoyed vaping before, I was yet to push the voltage past 4.3v. Since the ProVari could go to 6 volts I had to push it to see how vaping at this level performed.

So, for Day Four I decided to try forgo the whole ‘cartomizer’ setup and try a separate atomizer (atty) and cartridge. Since the ProVari has the much-loved 510 threading, it opens the door on hundreds of different accessories.

The atty I chose was the HH.357 Cisco Spec Hybrid 510 Atomizer ($12.99). An American made atomizer, these attys are supposed to be one of the best you can buy. The cartridge for this atomizer is easy to find, but I had some prefilled cartridges that I had set up a few days prior that contained the Halo e-Liquid Torque 56. This e-juice is a strong, fine cigar-like tobacco flavor that many people find a bit too powerful, but I love it and vape it quite often. Since this is one of my favorite e-juices I thought I might push it to see where I could go with the ProVari Mini.

I started off at 3.7v and worked my way up to find the “sweet spot”. Working up in .3 increments instead of .1 increments that I could have gone, I found the best results at 4.6v, higher than my previous setups but still far from the 6.0 I could use. Unfortunately, anything above the 4.9 began to feel a bit too hot for my taste, and pushing it in the 5-5.5v ranges I began to feel more than a slight burn, clearly the atomizer could handle it, but I couldn’t. I think this is important, just because your PV can reach this high voltage numbers you may never reach them, or at least not right away.

Day Five:

I decided to push out an email to my vaping buddies and asked for advice. I told them I wanted to push this ProVari as far as it could go, but I wanted “Quality” vapor and flavor and not just push a 3.0 ohm Boge to 6.0v and deal with it until I get an error.

What I was turned onto was the VZ 510 HV (High Voltage) 5.0 Ohm stainless steel Cartomizer. At $2.59 a piece, with a capacity of 90 drops of juice AND a soft rubber drip tip this was a great buy. Yes, it was back to a cartomizer, but man what an experience this was!

For this setup I went with Apollo eCigs RY4 e-juice. RY4’s are probably the most popular juice among ex-smokers. At 1.8% nicotine this juice provides a good throat hit in a normal cartomizer (3.0-ohm) and pushing it to 5.7v and 5.8v I expected a throat hit that might actually feel like Chuck Norris came over to my office and karate chopped me in the neck.

I dripped in the 90 drops exactly and let it sit for 2 full hours to make sure that the interior was saturated and ready to go. I attached it to the ProVari, started off at 3.8v and worked up. A 5.0-ohm carto working at 3.8v is hardly producing any vapor, so I was able to quickly move up into the high 4’s. Once there I moved into the 5v range slowly, with outstanding performance all along the way.

Finally, I arrived at 5.8v and was on the receiving end of vapor so thick you could cut it with a knife and the RY4 flavor that was so intense that I knew if I kept this up for more than 10 minutes I was going to get sick.  But for experienced VV users that love playing in the high-end zone this was certainly a setup that would appeal to them. More importantly, I was able to push the ProVari to 5.7/5.8v range without a single hiccup, producing vapor and flavor I really didn’t believe could be achieved, and not a bit of harshness to it. It was “unfamiliar” territory for me, but one I plan on returning to often.

Day Six and Beyond

The next day I felt like I had been out the night before, years ago, as a smoker and been drinking and smoking like there was a meteor heading to wipe out all life on the planet. I had a nicotine hangover for the first time since I started vaping. Clearly, vaping in the high-end was going to take time.

So, after a shower, some breakfast, an Ibuprofen and a slow walk to the office I backed down to my Texas Tuff Tank DCT and my Carolina blend. I stayed there, setting my ProVari to 4.1v and left it there for several days. For me, I found the ‘vaping nirvana’ I had hoped to find.

Battery Life

Now it was time to pay attention to battery life, consistency and durability. The ProVari performed admirably and I discovered the real pleasures of vaping the way the pros do it.

The battery seemingly lasts forever, and I found myself switching it out only every other day. I don’t have a vaping device in my hands 24 hours a day, so I would say that I was getting between 6-9 hours of real use from each battery charge. The higher I ran the voltage the shorter the life of each charge. Since I use the Texas Tuff Tank (Boge 3.0-Ohm) I was getting closer to 9 hours on most days.

So much flavor and vapor coming from a product that fit in the palm of my hand, the ProVari mini has become my go-to PV. – John Manzione June 25th, 2012.

Over the next couple of weeks the ProVari mini became a part of who I was. I used nothing else and left the other reviews we were doing up to the staff. Using it had become second nature. I picked up a couple more packs of blank Boge 3.0-ohm cartos (in black) and kept them filled with a variety of other flavors from Ginger’s e-Juice (I am reviewing their juice).

I developed a rhythm to my vaping because I didn’t have to change out the battery every couple of hours like I do when I’m vaping a standard eCig battery.

When the exclusive time was complete I returned to a variety of setups, including the newest product I was reviewing, but I kept finding myself grabbing for the ProVari whenever I was “off-duty” (from being a professional eCig reviewer).

If I had to stop using the ProVari for any reason I know that the enjoyment I get from vaping would diminish greatly. I’m not so sure I could even return to using normal eCigs and enjoy them nearly as much as I did with the ProVari Mini.

  “how you gonna keep them down on the farm….”

And In The End…

I had wondered for quite some time before this review if the ProVape Provari was all it was cracked up to be by so many people in the vaping community. Those who talk about it as it was the “end-all be-all” of vaping go on and on about them. Could a VV product be as good as these people were saying, or was it hype?

“I gots to know” –

Without a doubt, the ProVari mini is an amazing vaping device. I wish I could find something negative to say about it, just so it doesn’t look like I’m shilling a product. Yes, the number of button pushes was a bit annoying at first, especially during the testing phase when I was always jumping up and down the voltage meter. But it didn’t take long at all to get used to it, to memorize the number of pushes for each function. Now that the testing is over and I am using the ProVari as a regular user would I don’t find myself messing with the button much at all.

Plainly put; there isn’t anything I’ve reviewed, or anything I used, that performs better than the ProVari. As a Variable Voltage PV it stands alone, the king of the mountain. And friends, that’s about as honest as I can be.

John Manzione/Editor

UPDATE* Our July 2012 is e-Juice Month-long celebration begins in a few days. We will be reviewing ten brands of American Made e-juice, and publishing two (2) reviews each week. The ProVari Mini will be one of the primary vaping devices we will use during the celebration. Because of that, you can expect to see an update review during the first week of August. I’ll let you know how well the ProVari did with such an intense workout. I fully expect to put more than 100 e-juice flavors through this ProVari (as well as other devices) and yet I have no doubt that it will perform just as well as it did during our review period with it. – JM

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