It was only a matter of time before someone tried to build a better mousetrap. And that’s exactly what the Vandy Vape Simple EX Squonk Kit is. Of course, we could also call it a pod mod for flavor seekers. A high-nic solution for advanced vapers. A better introduction to vaping for recent ex-smokers. There’s any number of ways to describe the Simple EX, but it really is a better mousetrap for vapers of all experience levels.
And it makes sense – when e-cigarettes first hit the streets more than a decade ago, there was an immediate push to make them better. And over time, all of the best ideas were applied across the board. Now squonking joins that list. Because the Simple EX allows high-nic e-liquids (either freebase or nicotine salts) to be squonked to a dedicated mouth-to-lung (MTL) atomizer, allowing pod mod fans to enjoy a higher-quality, longer-lasting experience.
And the results are effing beautiful.
I don’t mean “this is my favorite device until tomorrow” beautiful. I don’t even mean “this is the most original device I’ve seen in a while” beautiful. I’m saying that Vandy Vape’s Simple EX might be the best thing to arrive for MTL vapers in a VERY long time. And it’s making this direct lung vaper take another look at this resurgent format.
Let’s take a closer look at this absolute gem…
First off, the term “squonk mod” immediately paints a picture of bulky boxes and huge cloud producing machinery. But the Simple EX should have been called the “XS” … as in “extra small.” Yeah, this mod is TINY.
It’s also pretty darn attractive for a beginner device, with nicely color-matched, translucent plastic sections (reminding me of the 1999 Gumdrop iMacs) in a wide range of hues, a sizable opening for pressing the squonk bottle, and a nicely sized display.
Plus, the Simple EX’s operation buttons are high-quality, as well. Firm, clicky and immediately responsive, I’m tempted to take them apart and attach them to some of my supposed “high-end” devices, which all seem to suffer from mushy fire keys. Hat tip to Vandy Vape for realizing that “entry-level” doesn’t have to mean “cheap.”
But, even with the modest, palm-friendly dimensions, the variable-voltage Simple EX has some impressive specs under the hood. The 850mAh integrated battery and 20-watt maximum output make for a nice pairing – powerful enough to keep advanced vapers happy, but also conservative on battery usage, so you don’t find yourself plugged in most of the day.
(BUT, the Simple EX is passthrough-capable, so you never have to stop vaping if you don’t want.)
The 4mL squonk bottle may pale in comparison to larger BF mods, but when using nicotine salt juices and low-voltage output, that 4mL might just get you through an entire day. Hell, I only refilled once a day, and I was testing this thing pretty hard.
The Simple EX squonk action is surprisingly controlled, too. A few gently nudges of the bottle immediately fill the adequate juice well on the companion RDA, and I’m happy to say my ham-fists never once oversquonked or flooded the deck during my testing.
At first glance, the included Simple EX RDA doesn’t look that impressive. With similar dimensions to several leading MTL RDAs, this basic dual-post, single-coil dripper isn’t going to win any innovation awards. And thanks to some bomb-proof o-rings, removing the top cap the first time is arguably one of the toughest things I’ve had to do since joining Spinfuel VAPE.
(Don’t worry, they loosen up.)
But as part of an overall kit, the 19mm Simple EX RDA is an ideal complement to the mod – to the point that I stopped trying to test other RDAs. None worked or felt better on the Simple EX than the one packed in the box. This is how Vandy Vape wanted you to experience this MTL squonker, and who am I to argue?
Building on the Simple EX lives up to the name, with a rudimentary post/terminal design that allows newcomers to quickly learn basic coil placement, while giving advanced vapers a refreshing break from complex builds. But simple doesn’t mean bad here – the deck is extremely well-built, and holds coils in place without an ounce of movement.
The highlight of the RDA is the six-slot airflow control, which is rare for typically snug MTL atomizers. While these varying airflow holes won’t give you a huge lung draw (and you wouldn’t want one with 50mg salt nic juice, anyway) allowing vapers to customize this experience only adds to the appeal of the Simple EX.
The cap isn’t effective in spinning right out of the box, but once the O-rings loosen up (a little spare juice will help) it’s a nice little airflow control system for an entry-level RDA.
Vandy Vape Simple EX Squonk Kit Specs
- Size: 58.5x42x24mm (Mod), 25.8x21mm (RDA)
- Working voltage: 3.2-4.2 volts
- Working current: up to 6.5 amps
- Output voltage: 3.2-4.5 volts
- Coil resistance range: 0.8-3.0 ohms
- Output power: up to 20 watts
- Output mode: Voltage
- Standby current: up to 20uA
- Charging current: 800 mA (battery 850 mAh)
Vandy Vape Simple EX RDA Features:
- 21mm Diameter
- Clear Acrylic Top Cap Construction
- Optional Delrin Top Cap
- Two-Post, Single Terminal Design
- Large Terminal Shelf Opening
- Top-Secured via Flathead Slotted Screws
- Restricted Airflow Design
- Adjustable Single Side Air slot – Multi-Sized Airflow Size
- Gold-Plated Squonk BF 510 Pin
- Gold-Plated 510 Connection
Vandy Vape Simple EX Squonk Kit Contents
- Simple EX Squonk mod
- Simple EX RDA
- PC comp cap
- Quick charge USB cable
- Stainless steel top cap
- PC drip tip
- Delrin drip tip
- Spare parts bag
- Instruction manual
- Two superfine MTL fused Clapton coils
Observations While Vaping
Get ready to experience all-new levels of enjoyment with your Nic-salt eJuices. Because I imagine many of you think you’re getting maximum flavor from those “two refills and done” pods. Well, newsflash, kids – there’s a new way to enjoy them, and I’m pretty sure this is how e-liquid companies envisioned things all along.
Using a bottle of Naked 100 Really Berry 35mg liquid I haven’t touched in a while (because the flavor never came through in pods) I was absolutely floored how deep and nuanced the blackberry and lemon undertones shone on the Simple EX. And there was nothing “special” involved in my build – just a stock RDA, supplied coils from the package, basic cotton. Everything I needed was right here.
The Simple EX squonk action was smooth and leak-free, the RDA was a flavor-focused beast, and the 850mAh battery outlasted many of my other internal cell mods. The experience was about as close to flawless as I’ve seen. And it came from a mod kit that costs about 1/3 as much as supposed “high-end” devices.
The Vandy Vape Simple EX continues to blow me away. When I first heard of a MTL squonker, I figured “Eh, let’s see.” Now, I can’t put it down. From vape quality, to design, to outright enjoyment, the EX just drips with quality. I’m probably never going to be a full-time MTL vaper, but I fully expect to keep this in my rotation for a long time to come.