Today we’re going to take a look at some of the best RDA tanks the VapeBeat team tested over the past year or so.
RDA stands for rebuildable dripping atomizer but these setups are sometimes called “drippers” — especially if you’re down with the kids, as we quite clearly are.
RDA tanks offer unparalleled performance and flavour. They can be fiddly and they don’t hold much E Juice, but for sheer cloud output and precision with flavour it is very difficult to beat them.
This is why RDA tanks are so popular with pro-vapers and those that take vaping very seriously. If you’re after something similar to an RDA, just with more E Juice capacity, you might want to check out RDTAs.
I recently reviewed the GAIA RDTA by Cthulhu Mods and it blew my socks off! Not only is it stunningly engineered, but it is also a brilliant tank to work with, as it is super easy to build on and it wicks like a dream.
If you’re interested in RDA performance, but want more juice capacity make sure you check out our guide to the best RDTA tanks you can buy right now.
But what are the best RDA tanks to buy as of right now?
In the past 12 months, VapeBeat has tested a bunch of different RDA tanks, and this list is where we collate the best of the best.
RDAs don’t have a storage tank, per se, but a lot of the newer models do have wells inside them where you can store some surplus juice. They still require a top up pretty regularly, but they aren’t quite as bad as they used to be.
If you want the best of both worlds – sub-ohm tank-style capacity and the ability to build your own coils – you’re likely better off with an RTA tank.
All of this might sound rather complicated if you’re used to standard tanks. But rest assured, RDAs are fairly simple to set-up and produce excellent flavour and bloody enormous clouds. They’re also quite a bit cheaper and smaller than the more traditional vape tanks you might be used to, which is handy if you’re rocking a big mod.
Three Reasons You Should Try An RDA Tank:
- Better Flavour – If you’re chasing BIG flavour than an RDA is the way to go, as there really is no comparison when it comes to bright, crisp notes and sharp detail when vaping. For many, this is why RDA tanks are the ONLY option when vaping.
- More Clouds – The clouds you can produce with these things, once coupled with a decent mech-mod or box-mod, are INSANE. You know when you go into a vape shop and you can barely see a thing? Yeah, that’s because of RDA tanks and the insane amounts of clouds they kick out.
- More Cost Effective – You don’t have to buy replacement coils, which are bloody expensive, if we’re being honest, as you build your own. And while this might sound like a pain in the ass, once you have a couple of builds under your belt you’ll be able to build a new coil with your eyes closed.
For more information on wicking and building your own coil, check this piece out — How To Build and Wick Your Own Coils.
- 100% Authentic Coil Master Full Kit
- Updated Newsest Version of the full DIY Kit (V3)
- Newest Version of the Coil Master Jig included (V4)
- Exclusive LifeMods Bundle Includes added LifeMods Brand Wire Rods at no extra cost
- Now comes with an updated 521 Tab Mini V2. It is the Best Multi-functioning Ohm Reading Multimeter one will ever need! It allows you to pulse an electrical current through your wire whilst building, it also has a spacious rebuilding deck which allows you to work freely and with ease!
Below is a selection of some of the best RDA tanks we tested in the last 12 months listed, as always, in no particular order.
Vandy Vape MESH RDA
The Vandy Vape MESH RDA has been making A LOT of friends in the vape space of late. Partly because it looks awesome, but also because of its rather innovative mesh coil option, whereby you can use mesh for the coil versus traditional wire.
Mesh coils were around back in the day, but they kind of disappeared. However, the Vandy Vape MESH RDA aims to bring them back – with gusto! For me, it was definitely pretty novel using mesh coils over traditional ones.
And even though I’m something of a traditionalist in this regard, I did really enjoy setting up and using the mesh coils Vandy Vape includes in the box. You get less spit back, it’s super simple to install, and it produces an INSANE amount of vapor.
If you don’t fancy using the mesh, however, you can set up the Vandy Vape MESH RDA with standard coils of any size, thanks to its decent-sized deck. The build quality of the Vandy Vape MESH RDA is wicked, everything is premium-grade and it comes apart very easily. It also vapes like a monster, so if you’re after a big hitting RDA, the Vandy Vape MESH RDA should be high on your list.
You Can Pick Up The Vandy Vape MESH RDA via FLAWLESS Vapes For $35
HellVape DEAD Rabbit RDA
This RDA is my new daily driver. I read about it, watched videos, then decided: I had to have it in my life, so I went out and bought one. I got the gun-metal version and I’ve been vaping my face off ever since.
The DEAD Rabbit RDA has been getting TONS of attention of late, thanks to massively positive reviews, a great price, and its truly brilliant airflow and flavour. I love the way this tank looks, the way it vapes, and I love building on it.
It can hold a monumental amount of E Juice, when wicked correctly, and it is super-simple to build on. I’m rocking a pair of sizeable, dual-Claptons at the moment, and she’s been vaping like a beauty with crisp, detailed flavor that is about as good as any RDA I have ever used.
Check out my full Dead Rabbit RDA Review for a detailed breakdown. But if you want a spoiler ahead of that, I’ll oblige – this RDA is awesome. Everything you’ve heard about it is true. I love this RDA and it will remain in my vape rotation for a good long while.
You Can Pick Up The DEAD Rabbit RDA via DirectVapor for $35.95 (FREE SHIPPING)
Pulse 24 RDA by Vandy Vape
The Pulse 24 RDA is one of the hottest RDAs around right now. Look anywhere online and all you’ll see is people raving about this RDA. Flavor, clouds, squonkability – the Pulse 24 RDA has it all. If you’re in the market for a well-priced RDA that is super-simple to live with, then the Pulse 24 RDA should be HIGH on your list.
The Pulse 24 RDA is easily one of the best squonk-oriented RDAs on the planet right now. The juice flow is so precise and not at all heavy-handed which means your coils are always perfectly saturated but never too saturated that they spit and leak. Vandy Vape hit the nail on the head with this one, so if you’re interested in using it for squonking your best bet is the Vandy Vape Pulse Squonk kit
I’ve been using the tank without squonking though and it still kicks A LOT of ass. This isn’t a pricey RDA either; in fact, it’s really very cheap given some of the competition on this list. And that, in my book, makes the Pulse 24 RDA a triple threat – and triple threats are rare in the world of RDAs at this price point.
If you want an excellent RDA that kicks out brilliant flavor, that has a great build deck, that is super-simple to live with, looks good, and can squonk better than any other RDA on the planet right now. Get the Pulse 24 RDA! You will not be disappointed.
You Can Pick Up The Pulse 24 RDA on its Own via Direct Vapor For $28.95 (FREE SHIPPING)
TERK RDA by VapeAMP
The TERK RDA is pretty pricey, but this RDA is designed for BIG performance and/or competition-level vaping. The look, feel, and finish of the TERK is sublime. It’s squat, perfectly proportioned, and it has a great deck for building on.
Created by VapeAMP, this RDA is 100% made in the USA. The TERK RDA features a two post, clamp and shelf design like the GOON RDA, only here you have Philip screws for easier and quicker installations.
The TERK RDA has very deep juice wells, so this is an RDA you can setup up, juice-up, and leave the house with. You should get plenty of uptime before a re-drip is required – 20-30+ puffs at a minimum, providing your wicking is on point.
Basically, the TERK RDA is the kind of RDA you buy and then use solidly for six months without even looking at another RDA tank. It’s that good. Flavour. Clouds. Easy to live with. Deep juice wells – the TERK RDA does them all. And this is why it is easily one of my favourite RDAs of all time.
You Can Pick Up The TERK RDA by VapeAMP via FLAWLESS Vapes For $72 – Down From $90
Wismec Guillotine RDA
Now, this RDA is pretty special. I randomly bought one a few weeks back when I was buying some new cells. I didn’t expect much – it only cost $20 – but the Guillotine RDA has been steadily impressing me ever since.
For the price, it’s impossible not to like this RDA. It’s around half the price of a top-tier setup and it vapes like a freakin’ monster. On top of this, it also has truly MASSIVE juice wells; it’s gotta be around 2-3ml, at the very least.
It’s super simple to work with, comes apart easily, doesn’t get too hot, even at very high output, and it seldom leaks. I had no expectations about this RDA when I bought it; I just got it on a whim, but I have been so impressed by it that a couple of my buddies have gone out and got themselves one.
For me, the best bit about the Guillotine RDA is its juice wells. You can easily get between 20-30 puffs (again, at the very least) between drips. The flavour and clouds are also great. Normally, the Guillotine RDA comes as part of the RX Machina kit (a mech mod set-up), but you can buy it as a standalone tank.
It’s not the best RDA on this list. Not by a long shot. But it does offer up excellent performance and brilliant value for money, so if that’s your thang… make sure you check it out!
You Can Pick Up The Wismec Guillotine RDA For Under $20 RIGHT NOW Over At GearBest
Wotofo Lush Plus RDA – The Flavor KING!
If flavour’s your thang, then you REALLY need to check out the Wotofo Lush Plus RDA because in this regard it is easily one of the best in the business. It’s also very cheap now too, as it’s been out awhile.
I’ve owned my Wotofo Lush Plus RDA for a good 18 months now, and in that time I have returned to it often. Why? For flavor. It is brilliant in this context, maybe one of the greats, and I always use it to test out new E Juice as it gives me the most precise overall view of the E Juice I’m testing.
The airflow is a bit weird on, its tighter than usual, and while this does take a bit of getting used to, it does deliver a very satisfying, ever-so-slightly-resisted vape. Generally, I like a bit of resistance on the draw, so this suits me down to the ground.
As I said: this isn’t a new RDA. Not by a long stretch. But if you’re a flavor chaser and you don’t already own this tank, well, you sir, are really missing out because the Wotofo Lush Plus RDA is easily one of the best in the business.
You Can Pick Up The Wotofo Lush Plus RDA via HeavensGifts for $32
This RDA is a BEAST. If you’re looking for one of the best RDA tanks in the business, that’s also extremely popular with vapers, and made right here in the good ol’ US of A, the Plume Veil V2.0 RDA is 100% worth a look.
The Plume Veil RDA V2.0 has a myriad of improvements over the 1.5V of the tank, which include: a complete redesign of the top cap, increase vapor production, a wide bore drip tip, 24K gold plating and longer screws for a better connection.
Basically, if you’re looking for a no-nonsense, potent RDA that is brilliant to work with and vape on, the Plume Veil V2.0 is one of the best in the business – providing you can actually find one!
Most places are completely sold out! Though if you can find one, expect to pay around $124 – VaporDNA “might” have new stock soon, so keep tabs on those guys.
Grim Green and Ohm Boy joined forces to create this amazing RDA. The Recoil Performance RDA is a 24mm tank, meaning it’ll sit nicely on top of pretty much anything, and it also features three posts with the added bonus of a split center post with 2.5mm terminals.
Nick had a great time testing the Recoil Performance, so if you’re looking for more detail on this excellent RDA check out his Recoil Performance RDA Review.
Coil positioning is excellent on this bad boy and, because of its size, it will hold pretty much anything you fit inside it. The overall look, feel and finish of the Recoil Performance RDA is utterly brilliant – it looks and vapes like an absolute champion.
If you’re seriously into you builds and want something that is not only eye-catching, but also a performance set-up, then you NEED to check out the Recoil Performance RDA. It is just about the best RDA we have sampled inside 2016. Bar none…
Recoil Performance RDA Specs & Features
- Huge 2.5mm post holes for complex builds
- Fine-tuned, angled airflow channels for leak resistance
- Ultra-simple and elegant look
- 304 solid stainless steel construction
- 24mm diameter
- Clouds bro clouds cap – two 3mm airflow holes
- Flavor bro flavor cap – two 2.5mm airflow holes
- PEEK insulators
- Gold-plated brass 510 pin
- 15mm Chuff Delrin drip top
- 22mm build deck
- Raised negative posts and holes for easier builds
GOON LP RDA by 528 Custom Vapes
I love this RDA so much that I have a picture of it on our Facebook page, and if that doesn’t tell you everything you need to know about this exceptional RDA then nothing will.
The GOON LP RDA by 528 Custom Vapes is a beast. The performance this thing kicks out is quite frankly ridiculous. You have 24 karat gold-plated clamps inside and a dual air slot on the side that delivers air straight to the core for improved performance.
I love the way it looks, it kind of looks like a droid’s head, and the ULTEM High-performance plastic chuff top cap ensures perfect vaping that never gets too hot.
Yes, the GOON LP RDA by 528 Custom Vapes is pricey but once you’ve set this bad boy up and vape on it, you WILL KNOW where all those extra dollars went. Awesome stuff, all round.
Cosmonaut RDA by District F5VE
Holy crap on a stick… this is one crazy RDA. And I mean that in the nicest way possible. My good buddy has one of these and, a few weeks back, he loaned it to me for the day.
I had high expectations. But this thing surpassed ALL of them. It’s easily one of the best RDAs on this list, if not THE best, for both looks, flavour and overall awesomeness.
The Cosmonaut RDA by District F5VE is decked out in 24 karat gold and benefits from a post-less design, which means you can stick some seriously crazy coils in it.
You can literally put anything in the Cosmonaut RDA by District F5VE, as well as dense pack it with cotton, and it’ll vape unlike anything you’ve tried before.
A legend in the making, this one.
Wotofo Troll RDA V2
I could rabbit on about this RDA all day. But I won’t; instead, I’ll just use a snippet from our review to whet your whistle:
“I decided to use the included twisted coils. After putting them into the Troll RDA V2 and making my final adjustments and wicking them, I set them up for .3ohms. I then proceeded to juice the coils up; again, you can be pretty liberal here as the juice well is pretty deep.
After all was said and done, I ramped it up to 80W and took my first vape — it hits like a freight train, giving even my Doge 3 a good run for its money. I took the Troll RDA V2 past my comfort zone just to see what would happened.
The got it up to 175W and it held its own. I took 4 pulls and the Troll RDA V2 got a little warm but not hot. I love the wide open slanted airflow system, as it seems to give my vape a sort of tornado effect versus the left to right airflow slots which give a normal RDA vape. Either way both airflow systems work brilliantly, cooling the vape right down, even at super high wattages.”
You can read the full Wotofo Troll RDA V2 piece in its entirety by clicking through here.
Goon RDA by 528 Custom Vapes
If you’re new to RDAs, here’s a little rule you can live by – 528 Custom Vapes make amazing RDAs and if you’re after something with great design, excellent performance, and a beautifully engineered deck, you simply cannot go wrong with anything that wears the Goon name.
528 Custom Vapes’ RDAs are always expertly crafted pieces of kit, and the Goon RDA is no exception – this thing looks like an ornament it’s that pretty. But don’t be fooled by its good looks, the RDA will kick your ass when it’s set up correctly.
Expect flavour that will make dribble and clouds that will fog up your entire house in under 20 minutes. This is a pricey RDA, and there are some pretty decent clones around, but I would ALWAYS recommend you go with the real deal, as nothing else really comes close.