ELeaf iStick Pico Kit vs Pico Dual Review: Which One To Choose?
The Eleaf iStick Pico is a dream come true for beginner vapers who want a simple interface. Because they won’t have to compromise on features. What’s more, the product is portable, easy to use and best of all, performs outstandingly with its phenomenal Melo III Mini tank. As if this isn’t enough to lure you in, the price is less than $40.
The iStick Pico + Melo III Mini Tank Highlights
What’s in the box:
- 1× iStick Pico (no batteries included)
- 1× MELO III Mini Atomizer
- 1× 0.3 ohm Coil Head
- 1× 0.5 ohm Coil Head
- 4× O-Rings
- 1× USB Cable
- 2× User Manual
Specs and Features:
- Size: 45mm*23mm*70.5mm
- 510 Threaded
- Works with a one 18650 cell
- Modes available: VW/Bypass/TC (Ni,Ti,SS,TCR-M1,M2,M3)
- Output wattage: 1-75W
- Resistance for TC: 0.05-1.5ohm
- Resistance VW and Bypass: 0.1-3.5ohm
- TC range: 100－315℃/200－600℉
MELO III Mini:
- Diameter: 22mm
- Length: 55mm
- Capacity: 2ml
- Thread type: 510 thread
- Material: 304 stainless steel
The Melo III Mini has a typical sub-ohm design. There are grooves cut into the top cap. This way, vapers can hold it easily and unscrew for filling the slots inside with liquid. The tank is also top filling which is always a plus point. As a result, it makes filling and refilling easier in a mess-free way.
The iStick Pico Dual Highlights
The Pico was simple, and yet it provided all of the functions that I wanted from a variable mod. However, it looks totally different from the first Pico, and it no longer fit in my front pants pocket. On the other hand, after taking it for a spin, I found that the new Pico Dual fixed all of the problems I had with the original Pico. Also, it provided even more benefits.
What’s in the box:
- The Eleaf iStick Pico Dual 200W TC box mod (batteries not included)
- The Eleaf Melo III Mini sub-ohm tank with a 0.3-ohm coil head pre-installed
- An extra 0.5-ohm coil head
- A bag of extra O-rings
- A 2 amp USB cable that you can use for firmware upgrades and charge. You can use the USB to charge from the mod directly, but it is safer to use an external charger.
- Manuals for the Pico Dual and the Melo III tank
- An adapter that turns the mod into a power bank
Specs and Features:
- Uses 2 x 18650 batteries
- Can go up to 200 watts
- Has temperature control settings for Nickel (Ni200), Titanium, and Stainless Steel
22mm atomizers fit on the mod perfectly. Although 24mm and 25mm atomizers will fit on the mod, they will have quite a bit of overhang at the front
- In wattage mode, you can use builds as low as 0.1 ohms
Comparing the iStick Pico & iStick Pico Dual
To compare the two, I picked some of the most important features for a vaper. That is Design, How It Operates, and How It Vapes.
Design of the iStick Pico & iStick Pico Dual
You can look at the original Pico and the Eleaf iStick Pico Dual from the side, they are about the same height and width. However, try to look at the top, and at the way, they orient the batteries in the Pico Dual. You will find that it has a lot more girth to it. The shape of the Pico Dual is a little like that of the RX200. It has a triangular shape with rounded corners. However, the Pico Dual is much smaller and still somehow fits very well in hand.
The Pico Dual still has that familiar Pico look because it retained the battery caps at the top of the mod. However, you no longer access the battery sled from the top, there is now a battery door at the bottom of the device. The bumps at the top are there so the 18650 batteries can still fit in the mod without adding any excess bulkiness.
However, the Eleaf iStick Pico Dual had to sacrifice compact design for more battery life and power. It is no longer feasible to place the bulky Pico in your pocket as it will bulge out. As a result, it will be very uncomfortable. On the other hand (pun not intended), the Pico Dual still maintained its ergonomic design. The rounded edges of the mod make it easy to hold in hand. In fact, it is smaller and lighter. As a result, it is more comfortable to use the Eleaf iStick Pico Dual than the RX200 or even the RX2/3 in dual battery mode.
You can find the fire button of the Eleaf iStick Pico Dual at the same spot as the original. It’s right on top of the sideways OLED screen. However, unlike the first Pico, you cannot thumb fire the Pico Dual. For this reason, the shape of the mod somehow forces you to hold it with the fire button at the front. Also, just like the original, the (+) and (-) buttons are on the bottom of the device. This is so you won’t accidentally be adjusting the wattage of the device.
How They Operate
The original Pico holds a special place in my heart. However, even though I dearly loved that tiny little mod, my vaping needs evolved. I found it did not have the form factor and the power to keep up. For one thing, the battery cap of the original Pico prevented any atomizers above 22mm in diameter from fitting properly. In addition, the Pico is a single 18650 device. This meant let’s say I was using a dual coil build on my atomizer and set the wattage at around 60 watts. Then, the battery would run out of juice after just a couple of hours of regular vaping. Speaking of power, the original Pico can only go up to 75 watts, even the Pico Mega (the one that uses a 26650 battery) can only pump out 80 watts. This is because they are both single battery devices.
The problems that I had with the original Pico were somehow fixed in the Eleaf iStick Pico Dual. Thanks to the dual 18650 batteries, a single charge can last an entire day. Also, because there are now two batteries, the mod can now go up to 200 watts. This means it can now accommodate the high-powered atomizers like the Smok Cloud Beast and the Melo 300.
However, even though the Eleaf iStick Pico Dual can fit larger atomizers now, they will still hang a bit over at the front edge of the device. Atomizers that have 22mm diameter bases will sit flush. Any larger than that, and you will see some overhang along the edge.
I also liked the fact that Eleaf still used the same board that they used for the Pico in the Pico Dual. I am not really into the large screens that display all sorts of information on them. Furthermore, large OLED screens and all the unnecessary bells and whistles would just make the batteries drain faster.
How They Vape
So, as I mentioned earlier, with the Pico Dual mod my dual Clapton Coil build had more chances to bring the vaping experience I was looking for. And it really did. I used the same MELO III Mini tank on both Pico and Pico Dual for the sake of experiment.
I’ve noticed that with the Pico Dual the TC mode was far more accurate than in the original Pico. Probably that was because of the lack of power that the first one could deliver to heat coils to the degree that was set on the screen.
With the maximum power and temperature that I could play with on a second Pico, I produced huge trails of vapor that made my room disappear in a whole cloud mist. However, on that extreme levels, the flavor did wane significantly.
All in All
In conclusion, I must say that both units have a perfect build, responsive screens, and ergonomic design. The first Pico I would choose more for a flavor and daily use, especially when I’m hanging out. The Pico dual fits my cloud-chucking cravings and is best for getting to the extremes of vapor if I’m up for some tricks.