Sub-Ohm Tank, RTA, and RDA tanks defined and explained
In this article I will explain the differences between the RDA, Sub-Ohm Tank, and the RTA. These are your three basic tanks options when vaping. I use all three types, for instance, but with RTAs and RDAs, for instance, there is an associated learning curve, meaning they are not for the absolute beginner.
That’s not to say, when starting out, your only option is a Sub-Ohm Tank; quiet the contrary, in fact. All it means is that if you choose to the go the RDA/RTA route you need to do a little research first. Nothing too serious, though — just a few basic principles.
The idea of this article is to layout what the major differences, pros and cons of each style of tank are. This piece is designed with the novice vaper in mind, so we’ve kept it as simple as possible. As a matter of point, we never write about or recommend any hardware — or e juice — we haven’t tested.
At the end of each section, I have included a selection of my favourite options. I own hundreds of tanks, all of which have been ravaged in the past five years, but the one’s included in this article as “best option” suggestions are the most up to date setups on offer right now and they are also the one’s I have enjoyed using the most. The bleeding-edge of tank innovation, basically.
Right — let’s do this!
What makes a Sub-Ohm Tank a Sub-Ohm Tank? Well, you have the base (bottom), a pre-build coil which screws into the base, a chimney which is what allows the vapor to travel from the coil your mouth, a glass tube which holds your e juice, a top section which holds it all together and a drip tip (mouth piece) which is removable on 99.9% of Sub-Ohm Tanks.
That’s it — simple, right? These are the most common vape tanks in use BY FAR and the reason for this is, again, simple: they’re easy to use, require ZERO technical knowledge and they produce awesome flavour and clouds with zero tinkering. This is why most people who vape do so with sub-ohm tanks.
Sub-Ohm Tanks are super convenient, too. All you need to do is put the coil in, prime the coil, fill the tank with e juice, wait a couple of minutes and you’re good to go. And because they’re so popular there are a TON of options available and A LOT of innovation in this market segment, which means you have a lot of great potential options.
You can get Sub-Ohm tanks that deliver great flavour such as the Herakles Plus and other tanks that give great cloud production, close to an RDA, in some cases, like the Smok TFV4. This is why they’re so damn popular. Another bonus? A lot of tanks can carry upwards of 5ml of e juice, so you aren’t constantly refilling it.
Best Sub-Ohm Tank Options As Of Right NOW:
Rebuildable Deck Atomizer. These are a totally different ballgame when compared to the Sub-Ohm tanks. All the RDA consists of is a base with posts for attaching coils and a top piece with a mouth piece.
The RDA is designed with more advanced users in mind, as using them requires a decent understanding of Ohm’s Law. Make no mistake, Ohm’s Law and how it works is of paramount importance when using RDA tanks. For this reason — and a whole bunch more — PLEASE make sure you’re fully versed before attempting to use these setups.
With that out of the way let us talk a bit more about RDAs and what they’re all about. First and foremost: you will need to build your own coils, which is an art in itself. However, if you’re gunning to use and RDA but don’t want to build your own A LOT of vape shops carry pre-made coils these days. Still, any serious RDA vaper worth their salt builds their own coils, so you should too — #jussayin.
When you build and wick your own coils you can actually get a more fine tuned vape experience, especially if you pair it with the right mod. Using an RDA does take some patience and practice but it’s really not that hard once you’ve got the basics down. The flavour is always great and the cloud production is INSANE.
The big downside to the RDA? You have to drip your juice on the coils and wicks about every 3-6 draws. Still, even with this downside a lot of people still prefer RDAs over every other type of tank on this list, which speaks volumes about just how good these setups are.
Best RDA Options As Of Right NOW:
- 528 Customs Goon Two Post Clamp Style RDA
- Wismec Indestructible Atty RDA – Jay Bo Designs
- Mutation Plus X V4S RDA
- Tugboat V2 Authentic RDA
- Wismec Bambino RDA Rebuildable Atomizer
Rebuildable Tank Atomizer, perhaps the best choice for the veteran vaper who likes to build their own coils but also wants the benefit of having a tank as well.
The RTA is effectively an RDA combined with a Sub-Ohm Tank and what you have is perhaps one of my favourite types of setups — the best of both worlds, if you will. A couple of great examples of the RTA are the Herakles RTA 25mm and Griffin RTA 25mm.
What you get on the outside is very much a Sub-Ohm tank; it’s what’s on the inside that’s different. You have a build deck onto which you build your own coils. Once this is done, you wick your coils, saturate the cotton with ejuice and then you put on your top section that contains the chimney, glass, top piece, mouthpiece.
Then you fill it up, as you would with a Sub-Ohm Tank and you’re away. I TRULY love RTAs tanks and, out of all the potential options on this list, RTAs are my personal preference, as you get all the benefits normally associated with RTAs and RDAs, just with the convenience of a Sub-Ohm Tank.
Please note: because you’re building your own coils with this setup, you will also need knowledge of Ohm’s Law before undertaking anything. This is important, so please bone-up before you start out. We DO NOT need anymore accidents in the vaping world, not with all this talk about bans and regulation. Be responsible, guys.
Best RTA Options As Of Right NOW:
Sub-Ohm Tank, RTA, and RDA Tanks EXPLAINED: Final Thoughts
I use all three and I very much enjoy each. If I feel like blowing massive clouds while getting great flavour then I’ll pop on an RDA but this is usually my at home setup. If I still want that massive clouds and amazing flavour while on the go then I take my RTA.
But, there are those times where I just don’t need Hiroshima-sized clouds, so then I take out one of my Sub-Ohm Tanks. This may not be right for you and that’s totally fine. Maybe Sub-Ohm Tanks alone are your thing and that’s perfectly alright too, or maybe you just solely want to build your own coils and don’t mind dripping so the sole use of RDAs is what you prefer.
Word of advice, though: if you TRULY want the best of both worlds, then go with an RTA — these types of tanks are just amazing because they’re sort of a combination of the best parts of all three tank types combined.
Remember, you don’t need to waste money on things to impress other people. You are the one using it after all, so you need to go for what suits your tastes and style and budgets.
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