There are tons of brands, models as well as mods (modified e-cigarettes) to choose from and it is pretty hard to for a newbie to tell which ones to get started with. Just go to any of the e-cigarette forums and you’ll see how many opinions get given there about what to buy.
For beginners, the best and most economical way of starting is by purchasing a starter kit. An e-cigarette starter kit will provide the bare essentials such as batteries, spare e-liquid cartridges, atomizers, battery chargers, all usually packaged in a nice box. These e cig starter kits are perfect for newbie’s and can range from between USD $40 to $100, depending on what type of electronic cigarette you’re after.
Note that you will spot many brands of beginner e-cigs for sale online, but most of them are going to be the same models of PV’s, only rebranded. Most of these devices are made in China, but don’t worry, as the quality’s actually good.
The most 3 common types are the cig-a-like or 510 model the Ego model and the mods (modified) or APVs (advanced personal vaporizers) . Other brands and devices have come up with different looking e-cigarettes but they are all based off the 3 basic models.
Cig-a-like or 510 model E Cigarette
The Cig-a-like electronic cigarette is also known in the industry as the 510 and are considered the base model, or beginner level personal vaporizers. They make great starter kits because they produce a good amount of vapor and they’re really inexpensive – you can pick up a genuine 510 starter kit for around USD $50, which is enough to get you off tobacco smoking. Green Smoke, V2 Cigs, South Beach Smoke, Ever Smoke are a few of the most renowned brands as they were the initiators of the cig-a-like e-cigarette, but since then many other brands have given the 510 their own label.
The brands we mentioned offer a good warranty and their products are solid, but you will have to pay a couple of extra dollars more. I suggest you do, as you can’t really go wrong with these products.
Pros: Cheap to buy, easy to get started using and a small size makes it easy to carry around
Cons: Short battery life will require you to carry spare batteries around and you’ll be recharging them frequently. Their e-liquid cartridges are also tiny (0.1 ml thereabouts), so you will need to carry spare cartridges around with you as well.
The EGo Electronic Cigarette
Strange name, but a wonderful device. The Ego electronic cigarette can be thought of as the big brother of the 510. This one comes in 2 variations, the regular Ego, and the Ego-T (or tank). The latter uses a standard atomizer and the latter uses a specialized tank atomizer that can contain about 1-2 ml of e-juice.
Whether you choose the tank or the tank-less one is up to you. Each has its own pros and cons. From what I’ve seen on forums, the number of users that split between these two models are about fifty-fifty.
The Ego uses the same threading as the 510, which means that you can use a 510 atty on the Ego battery. A lot of people use the 510 atomizer on the Ego and drip their juices straight onto the atty via drip tips. There are several reasons for this: better vapor (in some cases), better flavor, and 510 atomizers are a few dollars cheaper than Ego atomizers.
Popular brands that sell the Ego e-cig are VaporFi and V2 Cigs. There are others as well but I recommend that you stick to these two, simply because they have a larger user base and they are really reliable and output consistent vapor.
Pros: Better battery life, more tank capacity with the Ego-T models, and this e-cig looks slick and sophisticated.
Cons: Larger than the 510 e-cigarette, and slightly more costly. The Ego-T tank model produces cold vapor and you don’t get as much flavor as you do with other types of e-cigarettes. I own an Ego-T myself and I’m not very fond of it and have stopped using this device a long time ago. Everyone has their own opinions when it comes to how much vapor production is ideal, and the same goes for e-liquid flavor.
Mods and APV’s
Modified and adanced personal vaporizers are really for the experts and new comers should stay clear of thes types until they are familar with the components and the function. Essentially the Mods give the user the ability to tweak the performance of the electronic cigarette to suit them personally.
The require the user to wind the coil themselves, attach the cotton and screw it down onto the base plate. The user can choose between dripping, where they drip the e-liquid directly on the coil then vape, or having a tank to store the e-liquid in similarily to the eGo models mentioned above.
Pros: Produces the perfect balance of vapor and taste required by the user, with the ability to tweak performance and the look.
Cons: Complicated and time consuming in setting up, and can be rather expensive.
The other thing to note is that you have to buy your e-liquids separately for both the eGo and Mod types of electronic cigarette. This is not ideal for a beginner, as you would have to go and purchase your e-juice from a different vendor.
I am personally a big fan of cartomizers, because they are so much more convenient to refill, they’re really cheap to buy, are easy to carry around and produce excellent flavor. The Ego on the other hand uses an atomizer, and each unit is more expensive, and you would have to clean it once a week because the atomizer coils get coated with gunk from dried up juice. I prefer to not waste my time with maintenance these days and I just want to enjoy vaping.
Both the 510 and the Ego’s require you to purchase your own nicotine e-liquids, and to drip or refill the cartridges yourself. If you don’t want to go through the hassle of doing this, the best thing you can do is to buy a starter kit.
There are a lot of other different brands like V2 Cigs and Green Smoke e-cigarettes as well and these are pretty much the same deal in terms of how they work.
The advantage of these types of electronic cigarettes are that, you can buy pre-filled carts with the nicotine strength of your choice (8 mg, 12 mg or 18 mg usually), and start vaping right away without bothering about all the fancy devices. These are made up of two pieces: the battery and the disposable cartridge.
Once you’re done vaping, you simply throw the cartridge away. The Halo ones are refillable, but most of the other brands are not unless you choose to pry open the top cover – I don’t bother.
You can purchase more pre-filled carts where you purchased the starter kits from. These make an excellent gift idea for family or friends who want to give up smoking but don’t know if they are going to enjoy vaping or not. They make fantastic entry-level electronic cigarettes.
There are two types of batteries that you need to be aware of: automatic and manual. Automatic batteries activate the atomizer to produce vapor when you draw air through the cartridge of the e-cigarette. You might have seen videos or images of this where the device lights up at the tip to simulate burning tobacco. These are more or less only available on 510-style models of e-cigs.
The other is the manual battery. These are usually found on higher powered personal vaporizers (PV’s) and the atty is activated via the press of a button. Manual switches tend to burn out atomizers more quickly than the automatic variety.
When buying your starter kit, you will have the option of choosing which type of battery you want. Again, this is a personal preference. I personally prefer the manual battery as I don’t have to put in as much effort when I take a drag.
The higher the voltage of the device and battery, the better the throat hit in general. But throat hits will depend also on the e-liquid you’re using also, such as (nicotine strength and PG concentration).
Why is buying a beginner kit the best way to go? Well, it’s a cheap way to get started first of all. And if you try it and find that you don’t like using electronic cigarettes, then hey, you’ve lost $50 – not a big deal. If you find that you like it, which I’m sure you will, then you might want to upgrade your device or simply spend your funds on finding a few flavors of e-juice you really like, to make that your “daily vape”.
In general, choosing an e-cig unit that you’re happy with is rather easy, use our reviews to help, compared to finding e-liquids that you don’t hate, and that you can vape on a daily basis and not get sick of. You’ll most likely spend a lot of money here going through trial and error before you find something you’re happy with. But that’s where the fun is!