Vaping Diaries #307: Paratus Mods Submariner Interview (Vape Summit)

With a low price and great features, the Paratus Mods Submariner looks like a fantastic vaping deal. When I last chatted with company co-owner Eric Lunn at ECC 2014, the Paratus Mods Submariner was teased. At Vape Summit III, the mod arrived and, at a glance, I was pretty impressed with what it brings to the table for such a low price. All models of the Paratus Mods Submariner have a direct contact top cap for maximum conductivity, a magnetic switch, a concave firing button to prevent auto-firing, and peek insulators that can withstand extreme builds. The price differs depending on the metal selected. The Paratus Mods Submariner comes in brass, copper, brass/nickel, nickel/brass, and titanium, with suggested retail prices of $115, $125, $135, $135, and $225, respectively.

At Vape Summit III, Eric went over the Paratus Mods Submariner’s features and showed off some special editions made just for the show. Again, what the company is offering for the price is quite noteworthy. Like its other products, the Paratus Mods Submariner is made-in-the-USA. The price points — bottom to top — are impressive. Even the top-of-the-line titanium model caught my eye, considering that I haven’t seen a titanium mod for less than $400. While the special Vape Summit III editions (shown in the video below) were fantastic, I think you guys and gals need to email the company for a Paratus Mods Submariner RPadTV edition with my face and logo on it. Really, you do. :p

Anyway, check out my Vape Summit III interview with Eric Lunn to learn more about the Paratus Mods Submariner. I hope that this mod gets a nice marketing push, as I’m all about made-in-the-USA vaping devices with novel features succeeding and I’m a fan of how Paratus Mods operates. After you’ve perused the video, kindly leave a comment and let me know what you think of the Paratus Mods Submariner.

Vaping Diaries #306: Njoy Artist Collection Interview (Vape Summit)

Known for its cig-alike products and an investment from Bruno Mars, Njoy surprised the vaping industry with the Njoy Artist Collection. A collaboration with five well-known and respected juice makers, the Njoy Artist Collection launched with five e-liquids that have been getting rave reviews for their complexity and deliciousness. While many enthusiast vapers associate Njoy with inexpensive products found in drugstores, gas stations, and the like, the Njoy Artist Collection is very much geared towards vaping enthusiasts. I first heard about the line from Craft Vapery’s Josh Krane and learned more from POET’s Randy Freer (one of the juice makers involved with the project). At Vape Summit III, Njoy’s Mike Maybaum told me more about the line and the thinking behind it.

For those of you not familiar with the flavors and creators behind the Njoy Artist Collection, here’s a brief rundown. Paramour by Daniel of Flavors is a blend of pear, peach, vanilla, and custard. Hedon’s Bite by George of Mr. Good Vape is a blend of different apples, caramel, and melon. Longtime friend of RPadTV Randy of POET has Dragonscape, a mix of Indian spice, tea, custard, and vanilla. Anne-Claire of Vaponaute has Sacre Couer, a melange of berry, rhubarb, custard, almond torte, and bourbon. Last, but not least, is Samba Sun from Jeremy of Good Life Vapor, a mix of clementine, peach, apricot, and marshmallow. As you can see, these are not simple one-note flavors that many vapers would expect from an e-cigarette company. The Njoy Artist Collection e-liquids are complex flavors aimed at vapers with discerning palettes.

Having a powerhouse like Njoy make products for vaping enthusiasts is a fantastic thing for the business. The company is highly influential and its distribution dwarfs the majority of most e-liquid companies. In many ways, it helps legitimize the vaping enthusiast segment of the market and helps mainstream consumers learn that there are better products than cig-alikes available. While some of the smaller juice companies I know are intimidated by the Njoy Artist Collection, I think it’s simply a sign of the vaping enthusiast market growing up. For the industry to grow, it doesn’t need another line of juices that’s only available in Southern California and made in the back of a shop. It needs products like the Njoy Artist Collection — juices that are made under the safest conditions and easily available to stores (not just vape shops) around the world.

Watch the Vape Summit III interview below and learn more about the Njoy Artist Collection.

Vaping Diaries #305: Praxis Vapors Interview (Vape Summit)

The Praxis Vapors crew had a lot going on at Vape Summit III. Amidst their busy schedule, Praxis Vapors CEO Ivan Lee and CMO Brett Reed spent some time with me to talk about what’s new with the company. First, we spoke about the recently launched Praxis Potions line of e-liquid. Starting with two flavors — Amethyst and Quartz — this line of vaping e-liquids is off to a hot start and extends the Praxis brand beyond hardware. Ivan went over the two launch flavors and spoke about what Praxis Potions does for Praxis Vapors as a company.

Next up, Brett and I chatted about the very special “Kamillion” edition of the Praxis Vapors Mod and Derringer Atomizer. In photos, the Kamillion simply looks like a torched steel version of the popular mod and atomizer, but it’s more than that. The video below shows off the gorgeous Kamillion finish a bit better, but it really needs to be seen in person and under different lighting conditions to be fully appreciated. After playing around with it in person, I promise you that it’s one of the most unique and beautiful finishes I’ve seen used on vaping hardware.

Enthusiast vapers are well aware that the Praxis Vapors Derringer has been one of the hottest atomizers of 2015. In fact, two guests on RPadTV’sThe Vape 48” mentioned it as their current favorite. Ivan and Brett spoke about the popularity of the Derringer and how they feel when new minimalist atomizers are labeled as “Derringer killers.”

Wrapping it up, the two spoke about what’s next for Praxis Vapors. Using comical and vague answers, the company may or may not be working on a new box mod. Also, the company may or may not be working on a new atomizer that could be a tank or could be another dripper. Their answers reminded me of that time I spent 12+ hours helping Asika study for her statistics exam. I heard a lot of information, but didn’t retain any of it. Ha! You’ll have to see for yourself in the Praxis Vapors interview below.

Vaping Diaries #304: Zero-G Vape Interview

One of the newest and hottest e-liquid companies in Southern California, Zero-G Vape has launched with five delicious dessert juices. Several of my vaping buddies are high on the company’s Type-1 e-liquid, an ube-based concoction that’s kind of like a Filipino RY4. As a fan of ube and RY4 e-liquids, I had to try this juice and it has become one of my 2015 favorites. At Vape Summit III, I caught up with Zero-G Vape senior mixologist Gabe Hernandez to learn more about the company, its current e-liquid lineup, and future juices.

Like many of the best things in life, Type-1 was an accident. During experimentation, Gabe came up with more than 20 mixes. The first one ended up being the best and became the juice now known as Type-1. It’s currently Zero-G Vape’s best seller. As a fan of vanilla custard e-liquids, I’m also enjoying Zero-G Vape’s Vanilla Custard juice. It’s reminiscent of Grimm Creations’ Vanilla Custard, but with a better balance (for my tastebuds, anyway). As a fan of apple pie — in real life and in e-liquid form — I’m also digging the company’s Rogue e-liquid. If you’re any kind of an apple pie aficionado then you definitely want to try this juice. Gabe goes over these flavors and the rest of the Zero-G Vape lineup in the video interview below.

While Zero-G Vape launched with five dessert e-liquids, the company has a bunch of fruit blends coming in the near future. Gabe mentioned that the company’s fruit juices should hit some time in the next three months. If the quality is anything like Zero-G Vape’s dessert e-liquids then these fruit juices should be a refreshing summer treat.

Zero-G Vape e-liquids are available in store and online at one of my favorite vape shops, Monster Vape Lounge. Learn more about the company and its juices by watching the video below. If you dig them, kindly hit the Monster Vape Lounge link and pick them up (not an affiliate sale, just a store a like).

Vaping Diaries #303: Marie Alvarez Round III (Vape Summit)

In addition to seeing awesome vaping hardware and tasting delicious e-liquids, Vape Summit III was fantastic for catching up with my favorite models. Truth be told, there’s one model that’s my favorite in the entire universe — the darling Marie Alvarez. Since she moved to Las Vegas, I haven’t gotten to see her at local shows, so I was excited to learn that she was working for Glas Vapor at Vape Summit III. In the video interview below, Marie Alvarez talks about Glas Vapor’s new line of e-liquids and what’s new with her exciting life.

As always, spending time with Marie Alvarez is special. Obviously she’s beautiful, but if you spend a little time with her you’ll find a tough, charming, and funny young lady…that can also kick your ass. I’m always amazed by her strength and what she has accomplished at such a young age. And yes, it’s best not to think about it too much because you’ll feel bad about yourself. While Marie Alvarez is kicking ass, raising a son, and getting all kinds of things done, I’ve yet to unpack from Vape Summit III and can’t muster up the will to go grocery shopping.

My pathetic life aside, be sure to take note of Marie Alvarez’s new Instagram handle. It’s streamlined and easy to remember. And be especially sure to watch my chat with her below. Special thanks to Car Culture TV for the Marie Alvarez photos used at the beginning and end of this article. The executive producer of that show is an extraordinarily handsome man.

Vaping Diaries #302: Jay Bo Designs Indestructible Atty Interview (Vape Summit)

Last time the RPadTV crew chatted with Jay Bo Designs CEO Jay-Bo was ECC 2014 and the Indestructible Atty was getting set for production. At Vape Summit III, the Indestructible Atty arrived! Hardcore vapors will remember Jay-Bo’s Tobh Atomizer as being one of the hottest atomizers in 2014. After seeing the Indestructible Atty, learning about its features, and hearing its low price, I have no doubt that this product will do even better than its forerunner.

While the Indestructible Atty has a number of slick features, let’s start with its noteworthy suggested retail price — $50. With many top atomizers breaking the $100 mark, it’s nice to see Jay Bo Designs offer an affordable product that’s not made in China. Jay-Bo was quick to point out that none of the materials used in making the Indestructible Atty were made or sourced in China, all the way down to the o-rings and screws.

As far as aesthetics go, the Indestructible Atty uses a similar design language as the Tobh Atomizer, but with a fresher and more streamlined look. The large fins are gone, partially for durability reasons and (I’m guessing) partially because many vapers in 2015 prefer a streamlined look. While I loved the heat dissipation the Tobh fins offered, I’m also partial to the sleek and smooth look of the Indestructible. Yes, it’s more streamlined, but it will also look and feel familiar to Tobh Atomizer fans.

Now let’s move onto the features. The negative posts on the Indestructible Atty use slots rather than holes, allowing vapers to use any gauge of wire and any number of coils that can fit in the chamber. The center post will not spin, avoiding an issue found in many other atomizers. Lastly, the top cap can rest on the ridge, allowing it to flip up without coming off completely. This particular feature is great for a quick look at your wicks and, let’s be honest here, for dripping while driving. (For the record, RPadTV does not condone dripping and driving. Yes, this parenthetical statement was made for CYA purposes.)

On an unrelated note, this was the first time I’ve had Jay-Bo on camera since he shaved his infamous beard. Learn the story behind the shaving and all about the Indestructible Atty in the Vape Summit III video interview below.

Vaping Diaries #301: Wanderlust Vapor Interview (Vape Summit)

Wanderlust Vapor was getting a ton of attention at Vape Summit III from some very important people. My buddies Lionel from Influx E-Juice and Josh from Craft Vapery were raving about the company’s juices. Since I hold both of their opinions in high regard, I had to check out the Wanderlust Vapor booth. To my delight, it was a productive and delicious trip. Juice maker Pat Nguyen makes some delicious and inventive e-liquids that stand out with their complexity and unique ingredient mixes.

Let’s take Wanderlust Vapor’s Ruby Cream, for example. The market is flooded with strawberry and strawberry-based e-liquids, and I’m mostly bored with the flavor. Ruby Cream takes the strawberry-and-cream flavor (that has been done time and time again) and adds a brilliant spin on it with malt. While adding an additional ingredient sounds like a simple thing to do, getting the balance just right takes skill. Pat did a phenomenal job with this e-liquid and it absolutely delighted my tastebuds. The malt really makes Ruby Cream distinct. Hell, I’m going to take a break from writing this article just so I can vape some…

…and I’m back! Now, the Wanderlust Vapor juice that had Lionel and Josh amazed was Lime Apple Crumbs. Another pleasantly atypical mix, this juice blends apple cider, lime, and pasty flavors. While I’ve encountered several apple e-liquids, most of those juices used candied or natural apple flavors. I don’t recall many (any?) that used apple cider. It’s a drink that I love cold or hot, and I’m jazzed that it’s part of this complex and tasty e-liquid.

So yeah! I’m really glad that Josh and Lionel bugged me to check out Wanderlust Vapor. With juices like the ones it had at Vape Summit III, I expect Wanderlust Vapor to have a great future. Check out my interview with the crew below to learn more about the company, its current flavors, and what’s coming next.

Vaping Diaries #300: US Vapor Mods Ceres Interview (Vape Summit)

It was fantastic meeting US Vapor Mods owner Mike George and learning about the excellent Ceres mod from him. RPadholic N8R and I met the company in the elevator of the Las Vegas Marriott. After learning that Mike and his crew were nice people out of San Jose, I told them that I’d stop by their booth and check out their stuff. I’m grateful for that chance encounter, because the Ceres is one of the few tube mods at Vape Summit III that was truly exciting.

Made primarily from copper, with some stainless steel accents and silver internals, the Ceres is an incredible performer with several unique features. Those of you familiar with Roman mythology will recall that Ceres is the goddess agriculture, fertility, and motherly relationships. The mod that honors her name also uses it as an acronym: Clouds and the Earth’s Radiant Energy System.

The Ceres mod uses a unique switch that ensures maximum conductivity. With many mods that uses springs, electricity is lost through the spring. That’s not the case with the Ceres. In addition to great performance, the mod is also very convenient. The top cap uses a sliding mechanism that should accommodate all atomizers. The sliding mechanisms allows you to screw an atty right in, as opposed to most mods with adjustable contacts that require you to fiddle around depending on the atomizer and battery combination. Mike explains the performance and convenience features better than I ever could in the interview below.

In addition to talking about the Ceres, Mike also spoke about future plans for US Vapor Mods and an upcoming atomizer that he’s working on.

Again, I love the happenstance that occurred in an elevator at the Las Vegas Marriott. Without that chance meeting, I probably would have missed US Vapor Mods’ booth. As I alluded to earlier, I’m pretty bored with tube mods at the moment, but I was so impressed with the Ceres that I had to pick one up. Learn more about the mod and the company in the video interview below.

Vaping Diaries #299: Random Thoughts on Vape Summit III

I’m back from Vape Summit III and pretty wiped out (in that good, euphoric way). Major thanks to Nate and Lawrence for helping me at the show. We filmed 30 Vape Summit III interviews and I have a ton of editing to do over the next few weeks. For my purposes, it was a great event that was full of excellent vaping products, wonderful people, some of my favorite models, and more. That said, it wasn’t perfect and there were a few things that attendees consistently complained about. With that in mind, let’s do one of those RPadTV binary breakdowns that I use for most of my reviews.

Old Friends (Good): It was nice catching up with vaping companies that I’ve interviewed before. It’s always good to see familiar faces and it’s very cool watching these companies grow. As with most young and booming businesses, many companies in the vaping industry evolve rapidly. Watching these companies grow and seeing the people behind them succeed is a privilege. A number of the interviews filmed at Vape Summit III were with companies that I’ve had on camera in the past, so stay tuned for some updates with old friends.

New Friends (Good): One of my favorite parts about trade shows is meeting new companies and discovering new products. Nate and I bumped into US Vapor Mods at our hotel, and checking out the company’s excellent Ceres mod was a fantastic surprise. The Ceres is a serious performer that I would have missed had I not randomly met the US Vapor Mods crew in an elevator.

I’ve had my eye on Hyon USA for several months and it was great meeting the company’s COO at Vape Summit III. Hyon has a pair of very unique atomizers coming in the near future and learning about them was excellent.

Similar to my experiences at E3, CES, and other trade shows, one of the best ways to discover new products is simply asking your friends, “What have you seen that’s cool?” Several of my industry buddies raved about Wanderlust Vapor, so I had to check out the company’s e-liquids. Honestly, I would have missed the Wanderlust booth completely and it would have been a shame, since the company had some of my favorite juices at the show. Stay tuned for interviews with these companies and several others that are new to RPadTV.

Attendance (Bad): Several exhibitors and attendees mentioned that they were expecting more people at Vape Summit III. While the show was certainly busy, I was surprised that it wasn’t packed. After all, you’re talking about a show featuring some of the best mod makers and juice makers in the business, with several products debuting at the event. Some people said that general admission ticket prices were too high for what attendees received. Others blamed the Mayweather vs. Pacquiao fight for making hotel costs exorbitant. Both factors sound reasonable and it was probably a combination of both that kept some people from attending Vape Summit III.

Global Exhibitors (Good): With the vaping shows I’ve been to in California, there have been a handful of international exhibitors. Vaping Summit III had — by far — the most international presence. There were mod makers and juice makers from all over the world. I was thrilled to see several exhibitors from Europe and Asia. Their attendance was a testament to vaping’s global growth and added to Vape Summit III’s diverse lineup of exhibitors.

Stuff You Can’t Buy (Bad): Vape Summit III had some of the most beautiful and amazing mods I’ve ever seen in my life. Unfortunately, the products that dazzled me the most weren’t available for direct sale. Some were available in auctions (rumor has it that my friend Vince won a box mod for a bid of…wait for it…$4,000). Other rare products were available on a raffle-to-buy basis. While I understand that these products are extremely limited and the logistics of selling them fairly at a trade show can be difficult, I loathe the raffle-to-buy system. Paying for a chance to spend a lot of money on a mod or bidding thousands of dollars on mod promotes the elitism in vaping that bugs me. While I’m happy that the modders made a lot of money, I’m generally against things that encourage elitism in vaping.

Registration Line (Bad): Nate and I arrived at Vape Summit III about an hour after the show floor opened. I expected the line to be dead at this point. Instead, it was about 100 people deep and some attendees said that they were waiting for more than an hour. Considering that day one was business-to-business and VIP attendees only, this was inexcusable. An hour later, I received an email from Vape Summit III’s PR agency, telling me to go to the “High Roller” section for expedited badge pickup; that information would have been exponentially more useful before the show started. All of these things reflect a young and inexperienced business. Like I touched on earlier, I’ve worked a lot of trade shows in the consumer electronics, videogame, and entertainment industries. Compared to those events, vaping shows have a lot to learn logistically. Aside from ECC, none of the shows I’ve been to have an understanding of how to work with the press. Please keep in mind that I’m not complaining, just observing. I’m sure that these shows will figure it out eventually, but right now they’re doing things that irritate paying customers and lose opportunities with the media. I want all of these shows to get better, for their sake and the sake of the business.

Good Times (Good, Duh): Criticisms aside, Vape Summit III was a fantastic show for RPadTV. Nate, Lawrence, and I got a ton done, having lots of fun filming. The show organizers should be commended for everything they did to make Vape Summit III a great event. Most of the exhibitors I chatted with said it was a productive show and all the general attendees I spoke with had a lot of fun. Thanks to everyone involved for providing a comfortable and enjoyable environment. Again, huge thanks to Nate and Lawrence for helping me at the show. Now onto the editing!

Coffee Talk #653: Ignorant Pacquiao Fans Dismiss Mayweather’s Victory

Last night’s boxing match (hard to call it a “fight”) between Floyd Mayweather, Jr. and Manny Pacquiao was disappointing. The most lucrative bout in the sport’s history, it was pugilistic clinic by Mayweather that didn’t exactly electrify the crowd. While Manny had a few moments of flashy offense and stunned Mayweather a few times, “Money” dominated the fight. For various reasons, many Pacquiao fans aren’t giving Mayweather the credit he deserves. As a hardcore boxing fan, I find all the talk of “all Mayweather did was run” and “Mayweather was holding all night” incredibly annoying; it shows that many Filipino boxing fans — especially the ones that only watch Pacquiao fights — don’t understand the sport at all. Before I rant more about that, let’s get to the official particulars.

Judge Dave Moretti scored it 118-110, while judges Glenn Feldman and Burt Clements had it 116-112. I was scoring the fight and gave Pacquiao two rounds, matching Moretti’s score. I also put an asterisk next to two rounds, noting that they were tough to score, so the 116-112 scores seem reasonable to me.

According to CompuBox, Mayweather landed 148 of 435 punches (34 percent), while Pacquiao landed 81 of 429 punches (19 percent). With those numbers in mind, I find it hilarious that ignorant fans have accused Mayweather of “only” holding and running. While he certainly held more than ever before and fought backwards for the majority of the fight, he also landed 67 more punches than Pacquiao and was the more accurate fighter.

It appears that several Pacquiao fans don’t understand how boxing is judged. The Association of Boxing Commissions uses three criteria to score a fight. I’ll list all three and discuss them in the context of Mayweather vs. Pacquiao.

  1. Clean Punching — Mayweather landed more shots and cleaner shots. He was accurate with his jab, straight counter-right, and check hook. Even when Manny managed to land combinations, many of his punches were partially blocked.
  2. Effective Aggression — Many Pacquiao supporters claim that Manny should have gotten more credit for being the aggressor. While it’s obvious to anyone that Pacquiao was pushing the pace, he wasn’t aggressive in an effective manner. His low connect percentage reflects his ineffective aggression.
  3. Ring Generalship — This is where Mayweather excelled and this is what’s lost on many Pacquiao fans. For the majority of the fight, Mayweather controlled the pace and distance. Again, the numbers support this. This was Pacquiao’s lowest and least accurate output for a 12-round fight; it had everything to do with Mayweather’s fantastic ability to control other fighters.

 

Keep in mind that I’m not a fan of Mayweather’s personality at all. I was rooting for Pacquiao and hoped that the God he prays to would bless him with a miracle. Even though I think Mayweather is a woman-beating piece-of-crap, his boxing ability is undeniably spectacular. The fight went pretty much how I thought it would — a dominant but unexciting boxing clinic by Floyd Mayweather, Jr.

Many fans are denying Mayweather’s dominance of Pacquiao due to ignorance. They simply don’t understand the sport of boxing and their whining is irritating me. It makes it look like Filipinos are homers that have no idea what boxing is about — they just complain about holding and running, while ignoring punch output and ring generalship. If you judged the fight logically and objectively, the only reasonable conclusion is that Mayweather thoroughly outboxed Pacquiao.

Anyway, that’s my take on the Mayweather vs. Pacquiao boxing match and how some stupid fans have reacted to it. What did you think of the fight? Yeah, it was a snoozer, but I don’t see how anyone could deny Mayweather’s performance. If you watched the fight, please share your thoughts on it in the comments section.