Smok RPM80 versus Smok RPM40

Vape Pod Kits

Smok has gone all in with refillable vape pod kits and all-in-one devices of ever increasing complexity and power. This may end up being the right call. The federal government has banned all prefilled vape pod flavors except tobacco and menthol.

For more information on flavor bans, check out features on the federal flavor ban and our resource page of State Vape Ban Laws.

It wasn’t that long ago that the battle for your vape pod dollar pitted the Smok Novo versus the Smok Nord. Both devices are loved for their simplicity and performance. The Nord has a fire button and swappable coils. The Novo was an autodraw but not an all-in-one device. This means that the whole pod is tossed when the coil is finally worn out.

Since that time, the Smok Novo 2 has been enhanced even further. Check out our comparison of the Smok Novo versus Smok Novo 2 for a deep-dive into this impressive vape pod kit.  

Devices like the Smok Novo 2 are great Juul alternatives, especially if you live in a state where adults are still free to enjoy the fruit, dessert and beverage ejuices that they prefer.

They are optimized for nic salt ejuice but work with conventional nicotine and higher VG juice as well. But they would never be mistaken for a fire breathing box mod.

Pod Mods

This gap between the compact vape pod kit and the box mod is where the pod mod fits in. After the release of the Smok RPM40 this summer, Smok has unveiled an even more powerful pod mod: the Smok RPM80. Click here to view our complete review of the Smok RPM40.

The term “pod mod” has been thrown around for a while and applied to basically any vape pod that had swappable batteries. These all-in-one style devices offered a bit more flexibility but it was the Smok RPM40 that redefined the category.

RPM apparently stands for “The Real Pod Mod”, and the RPM40 delivered. With 40 watts of power, a colorful display, adjustable wattage and a ton of coil options, the RPM40 can easily handle almost any style of vaping.

Smok RPM40

The basic premise of the Smok RPM40 design is simple, vape pod kit with adjustable wattage, TFC screen and a wide selection coils to cover every style of vaping.

The Smok RPM40 kit comes with two pods. One pod is compatible with Smok Nord coils and the other is compatible with a newer generation of RPM coils. The RPM coils are a larger and newer design. The RPM coil included with the kit is a beefy 0.4ohm mesh coil that generates excellent vaper and flavor. It also comes with the critically acclaimed 0.6ohm Nord coil.

But not all of the RPM40’s options are subohm. It has a significant selection of coils to choose from. If you want to vape nic salts in an RPM40, the popular Nord 1.4ohm ceramic coil is a great option, is the 1.4ohm standard coil. There are also 0.6 and 0.8ohm Nord coils for high VG juices.

This unparalled flexibility is backed up with a 1500 mAh battery and compact size. Although wider, the RPM40 is less than a half inch longer than a Smok Novo 2 and not much longer than a Smok Nord.

Smok RPM80

Consistent with Smok’s new naming convention, the RPM80 with a pod mod with 80 watts of power. It is a bigger device than an RPM40 but still smaller than a typical box mod. Unlike a box mod, the RPM does not rely on a tank that screws into a base plate. Instead it utilizes pods that snap into place and have swappable coils. This is the pure essence of a pod mod.

Where the RPM80 sticks out is sheer power. With 80 watts of power and a larger pod, it is designed to run the new Smok RGC family coils. Another acronym, RGC stands for real game changer. This may seem like a stretch when there is a laundry list of powerful Smok Mods that can easily match its power, the 0.17ohm RGC conical mesh coil.

The conical mesh coil utilizes something Smok refers to as nexMesh technology. Designed to generate a powerful, warm throat hit with superb vapor production and flavor, the RGC coil delivers on all counts. Capable of taking full advantage of the RPM80’s 80 watt output, it puts this vape pod kit in a different category than the RPM40.

There are a couple other cool new features on the RPM80 as well. Most notable is the adjustable airflow. Located and concealed at the bottom of the pod, this seemingly simple innovation moves the Smok RPM80 one step closer to box mod level performance and flexibility

Pitted head to head against the proven 0.4ohm RPM coil, which is also included in the kit, the new RGC coil is notably more powerful, emitting a satisfying and delicious cloud of vapor.

Smok RPM80 Pro

The gap between box mod and pod mod is further bridged by the Smok RPM80 Pro. Rather than a built in battery, the RPM80 pro runs on a single 18650 battery. This makes it a great alternative for anyone looking to transition from a box mod to something more compact. It is also a great option for box mod vapers who have 18650 batteries on hand and a desire to utilize a smaller device at times.

A less obvious but enormous advantage is longevity as well. Batteries have a finite number of charges in them before they give up the ghost. Whether it is the battery in your Honda Civic, iPhone or laptop, at some point it is going to die.

With a built-in battery, that means the device is now on a one way ticket to Kaputzville. But the swappable batteries in the RPM80 Pro can greatly prolong the devices service life. Just swap in a new battery and you are on your way.

And the RPM80 Pro is by no means permanently tethered to an 18650 battery charger. The device has a USB port and is perfectly capable of being quickly charged via mini-USB. There are plenty of old online warnings about not using the USB port on an 18650 device and only swapping the batteries, but the RPM80 has an advanced chip set that confers features and protections that were not available five years ago.

That said, as the owner of an 18650 charger, I find it easiest to just swap batteries. Especially since the RGC 0.17ohm coil can be cranked up to 80watts and at that power can drain the battery with alacrity. There is a reason why most mods use two or even three batteries. The gorgeous Voopoo Drag Mini 117w, which with a built-in battery is potential competition for the RPM80, has a built in 4400mAh battery.  Of course the Voopoo is a traditional box mod and does not have the potential nic salt chops that the RPM80 running a high resistance RPM40 coil, like 1.0 or 1.4ohm coils, does.


Choosing the RPM80 Pro over the RPM80 is to me a no brainer. Even if you do not have an 18650 battery or charger, you can simply order one at the same time and charge it in the device. Run in this format, it provides exactly the same performance as the regular RPM80 and you can swap out the battery when it nears the end of its shelf life. But if you have no interest in subohm vaping and the greater power of the RPM80 or vape exclusively nic salts, the RPM40 may be the more logical choice over both. It gives you access to the same RPM coils and the huge family of widely available Smok Nord Coils. The primary drawback in this scenario is that it has only half the battery life.