A nitpick, top airflow

I have seen a lot of reviewers talk about top airflow tank and reviewing them as such. I have probably been guilty of it as well. One thing that has always bugged me is it doesn’t matter if the airflow starts at the top, but where it hits the coils…isn’t that what matters?

If the airflow starts at the top but hits the coils from the bottom isn’t that bottom airflow? The start of the airflow should not matter as much as where it hits the coils, at least that is what I think.

Thought it would be a good discussion, maybe not but I feel people here would be good to sound off on it.


I think you’re right, it starts at the top but hits the coil from the bottom, so is it only called top airflow because it starts at the top?

I found with top airflow I got less leaking but also the tanks I tried had less flavour, could be down to the time it takes for the air to hit the coil, slower circulation or an air trap of some sort.


You’re right of course. It’s all about how the air strikes the coils. Looking with that perspective, some of the “top” airflow tanks might better be called “side airflow” tanks" as the air is routed from the sides and hopefully strikes just underneath the coils like a lot of RDA’s. I’m amazed how far the atties have come. I just picked up a Zeus X and a Kylin II and it’s hard for me to tell the difference in flavor. Really enjoy both a lot. Both tanks are also dry as a bone regarding leaking or seeping. I’m getting to a place where I really don’t care where the air comes in.


It really is. I took a chance on a recommendation from Vaping with Vic. Greatly improved over the original Kylin. I put in a single 4mm coil and the thing really puts out flavor. I don’t know that I have any atty that can beat it. Zero leaks/seeping as well. A little too airy for me wide open but it responds well to adjustment. Have it half open and it is a wonderful vape.


Yeah, the Kylin II is a pretty nice tank, really enjoy it as well. The Zeus X is also pretty good but the kylin fits my vaping style a little better, I can rip on the kylin more.

@anon96069639 I thought I saw you picked up the Mage 2019? That is pretty similar to the kylin II, both great tanks.

@Grubby yeah, a more direct airflow path could lead better flavor, less turbulence makes sense. There are some top airflow tanks tasty put out some nice flavor though, the intake rta comes to mind.

Just feels like top airflow tanks have a bias for most reviewers. Have read or heard so many say “for a top airflow airflow it is good but will never match a bottom airflow for flavor” The never part is what bugs me, with the right design it should match a bottom airflow for flavor. For every 20 bottom af takes maybe 1 taf tank gets released? The odds are better that a baf tank from that group will perform better than that single taf tank. That doesn’t necessarily mean a taf tank cannot perform just a well, it just needs a better design.


I’m convinced that many of these reviewers don’t take any real time with these products. I hear a lot of “not as good with a single coil installed” and “not as good as a bottom airflow” when my findings do not agree. I also watch them haphazardly cram cotton in the wicking channels when I know the damn thing won’t vape well unless “dammed up”. The Zeus, Zeus dual, Zeus X, and Intake will all put out a real good single coil vape if wicked correctly. I even get a real decent flavor out of the the engine nano. Have to really watch coil height and wicking but it can be done.


Your absolutely right, a lot of them use a product for the first time the day they do the review. I have seen some open the package, put a build in, use it on camera and give there impressions.

I was mistakenly forwarded an email from a mfg to one of the big YT stars. They had 3 different review options for the mfg to pick and send the money. The top price was somewhere between $1,500 and $2k and that package included a review out within 2 or 3 days from receiving the goods.


Traditionally the top air flow RTAs meant two things; Restricted air flow and less likely to leak. As the genre has evolved, those lines have certainly been blurred.

Some of it is myth and hype. For instance, I have bottom flow RTAs that I can lay on their sides and not leak. Conversely, I have had top flow RTAs that don’t necessarily leak but the chamber with the coils will flood over time. Some of it is proper wicking and sometimes its just the overall design.

The Dead Rabbit and Zeus X have changed my perspective on top air flow. They have enough or near enough air flow to satisfy me and both can have great flavor.

As far as reviewers… watch the Jai Haze review of the Profile Unity RTA. He didn’t even take 5 seconds to glance at the dummy proof picture diagrams on the instructions. He then wicks it completely wrong and gives it a horrible review.


I don’t even consider that guy a reviewer, more like a presenter and wanna be comedian. I have seen so many stupid things on his reviews it boggles the mind. Part of his popularity has to be that his reviews hit YT faster that most, pretty sure he gets a package and turns on his camera to do the review.

You make some great points, top airflow is improving over time just like anything else.


Another thing that can bug me about reviews is when they don’t take the time to try different coil options. They are getting paid to extensively review something. Maybe I am just more curious. The Dead Rabbit RTA comes to mind. To me its just ok as dual coil, but really shines with a big single coil. I watched a few reviews and none tried a single coil. Usually in the first two or three days of getting a new tank, I have tried four or five builds and single and dual coil if it allows.

Watching them sometimes cram cotton into channels or overflowing out the bottom just bewilders me. There are some that try various things, but overall I think they are just in a hurry to get the review done and collect that cash.


Wow! That is fucked up!


At least there are still some good ones out there, saw Djlsbvapes talk about using the profile rta for 3 weeks until he finally got a good wick. The method he used was definitely interesting, I am not gonna try it as not interested in buying that cotton. I have been using the Profile RTA with rayon and that has been fantastic.


He also updated his view on the Famovape Magma recently. He said that they listened and used a better 510.


I tend to heavily agree with you. I think that the air path is very important to flavor. Although I do think that it’s become a rather grey area (as was alluded to above).

As usual, I’m the “odd bear carrying the odd bag” but I can only think of one truly top airflow atty offhand, and that’s the Theorem. And coil placement in it is critical for flavor because of the way the airflow is implemented especially with the way I prefer to use it (with the single airflow gap accessory, over the side with the coil ).

I have to have the coil high enough to split the air. If I HAD to guess what the percentage ratio is, I’d say 70/30…but I try to make sure there’s a path down between the glass and coil, and under the coil (between the two ends of cotton hanging down), then back up again (70%). Which then merges with the bit coming across the top of the coil (30%) before exiting the chimney.

I kind of regard(ed) the initial marketing of "top airflow’ as leak-insurance attempts. With the designs available when it came into being, bottom airflow meant that there was a strong chance that if you laid over your mod/atty even for a few moments, there was going to be a very high likelihood of having a mess to clean up (to varying degrees).

On seeing many of the various designs associated with “top airflow”, many of which incorporate a long, drawn out, convoluted design, I perceived it as more interference to the “leak path”. So I took it more as an alternative than a literal description.

I appreciate you nit-picking though, as they’re not actually technically correct. But I hold that to frequently be the case with marketing. :wink:
Take “firmware upgradeable” mods for instance. So many “ready to receive mods” out there, and no firmware update to be found for them /sniff.

Great topic!

As am I! It seems like all these years of them attempting so many designs (some truly great, some truly screwball), some companies are really starting to get a great feel for what accentuates what category of vaping style. (High airflow, low airflow, high/medium/low power, long slow draws, fast short hard draws, etc).

Seen it on several occasions… /smh

That’s not disturbing at all.
It IS substantially more than I would have ever imagined though. Aside from the ad cash from oogle (uTub)… Some of them are killing it on the back end too.

Makes me wonder what manner such payment is made in? :thinking:
Store credit? :crazy_face: (Sorry! HAD to crack a joke, as it’s enough to make me :nauseated_face: otherwise…)


Surprised me too, I accidentally got included in an email exchange with YT reviewers agent and mfg, got to see all the back and forth. This reviewer has over 300k subscribers by the way, I can’t imagine what RIP charges with his 1+ million subs.

I think Djlsb has over 200k subs so sure he is making cash and deservedly so. I have never felt he half asses it though and everyone deserves to be rewarded for there hard work.

I agree with everyone who says that tanks have come a long way, it is hard to imagine it getting significantly better than what we already have.

Sprks, think I need to shuffle through my boxes and put the Theorem back into rotation, I really enjoyed that tank back in the day. When I first got it I was a little meh until I found the right build, what a difference it made for sure.


In defense of youtube reviewers, I am just as much of a pain in the ass youtube viewer as anyone. I want my questions answered and I don’t want to sit for over a hour watching a video. A great example is the single coil. I am becoming quite the connoisseur of single coils just because I have spent so much time playing with them. 45 Watts and I’ll blow a substantial cloud with some incredible flavor. Not tooting my horn as some kind of prodigy just admitting I have devoted an insane amount of time messing with the things. I want reviewers to stuff a single build in any reasonably small build deck and of course I want them to use a modified damning wicking method and position their coils precisely 3/4 above the primary airflow path. Now 90% of the viewers just went comatose. Of all the size measurements reviewers make the only one I want is a volumetric measurement of the vapor chamber. They shouldn’t mind the task of performing partial derivative calculus analysis, right? Actually, thinking more about that, with the money they are making they probably could send it out for that stat. I’ll give P Busardo (ms) credit here. He will always state that DL vapers should watch another reviewer for a really accurate review of an DL tank beyond form and fit.

Oh well, I’m rambling. Got four days off!!! WhoHoo!


So. Something like a Benzite wears?
:rofl: (Star Trek TNG)