The Dovpo Topside Lite Kit is the newest edition in the Topside line of squonking devices.
It’s another collaboration between Shenzen based company Dovpo and Brian, who is well known for The Vapor Chronicles YouTube channel.
Dovpo themselves have been manufacturers for the vape industry for almost fourteen years.
What Can We Expect From The Dovpo Topside Lite Kit?
The kit takes its name from the material used to construct it.
The original Topside mod was made from zinc, aluminum alloy and stainless steel.
This latest edition is composed of PCTG – polycarbonate – plastic, if you like – hence a very lightweight design.
What this, the Topside and Topside Dual all have in common is one thing.
They are all squonk devices and again, as the name suggests by way of a top fill system.
The Topside Lite now goes one step further by offering the ability to either squonk or use as a traditional box mod.
The following review is based on my own experiences of the product and may vary from your own should you decide to purchase.
Inside The Box
- Topside Lite
- Variant RDA
- Battery cover
- Micro USB cable
- Accessories bag
The box doesn’t mention it but you also get instruction manuals for the mod and the RDA. There’s also a certificate of authenticity as well as a battery safety card.
Battery safety cards should be included with ALL devices that require external batteries, so a big thumbs up to Dovpo for that!
Specifications And Features
Topside Lite Mod
- Material Polycarbonate and PCTG
- Size 97.5mm x 58mm x 28.2mm
- Power range 5W – 90W
- Temperature range 100 – 315 deg C / 200 – 600 deg F
- Display 0.96 OLED
- Input Voltage 3.2V – 4.2V
- Output Voltage 0.8V – 8.5V
- Resistance 0.08ohm – 3.5ohm
- Charging Micro USB 5V / 1A
- Gold plated spring loaded 510 pin
- Silicon bottle with a 10ml juice capacity
- Material 304 stainless steel
- Deck Dual coil build system
- Diameter 24mm
- Thread 510
- Adjustable side airflow control
- Bottom feed pin design
- Wide bore drip tip for direct to lung vape
The mod is available as a standalone product and comes in black, red and silver colour renditions.
The Variant RDA can also be obtained separately and is available in black, silver and gunmetal colour schemes.
It’s also not mentioned on the box that a battery adapter is included inside the mod.
This is because the Topside Lite, while designed to use 20700 and 21700 batteries can also accommodate 18650.
Simply slip an 18650 battery inside the adapter and you’re good to go.
Design And Build Quality
Squonking can be traced back as far as 2009 with the creation of the REO mod.
They became readily available with the release of the Kanger Dripbox in early 2016.
The Topside Mod
Even with an 18650 battery and the Variant RDA installed this is an impressively lightweight bit of kit!
Of course PCTG and clear polycarbonate go a long way in influencing this yet nothing looks cheap or tacky. Design quality has really been thought out on the Topside Lite.
The polycarbonate on the squonk section is extremely strong and durable, and it’s walls are also substantially thick.
The squonk bottle itself can hold a whooping 10ml of e-liquid, and is made of soft silicon and is very pliable.
A pleasant change from some of those brittle plastic ones that are prone to crack.
Dovpo Topside Lite – Making A Connection
There is one very strong magnetic contact at the base of the squonk section.
Another two smaller ones can be found either side of the squonk connector at the top.
All three unite to ensure a very strong connection between section and mod.
The threads on the squonk cap are very smooth and easy to work. In fact there are so many of them there really is no need to over-tighten.
Although the two fill ports are able to accommodate all nozzle sizes, I would still recommend you take your time when administering e-liquid.
It’s possible to remove the squonk bottle by releasing two small screws either side of the fill cap.
The male squonk connector can be found on the battery section of the mod.
The upper battery contact is a little stiff but being spring loaded will provide a good rattle free connection.
The battery sled has the positive and negative positions molded within the inner plastic wall.
An ingenious method of alignment and magnetic grip has been employed to ensure a seamless connection.
I’m extremely impressed with how effectively this works. Excellent design work!
A rubber seal surrounds the inner threads on the male connector. This will ensure a leak free performance while squonking.
As you can imagine this male connecting pin is very small. It needs to be removed when using the kit in the traditional box mod form – try not to lose it!
Thankfully, Dovpo has provided two replacements in the spares bag, along with spare screws should you require them.
Dovpo Topside Lite – In Traditional Box Mod Mode
This is where the Topside Lite kit really shines! You want versatility? You got it!
Simply remove the male squonk pin, squonk section and replace with this conversion door.
The Topside Lite genuinely looks like a completely different kit with the conversion door installed!
Offering a compact design that looks and feels perfect for A 90W device!
It comes packed with the following.
- Variant RDA
- Screw driver
- Spare screws
- User Manual
- Spare O rings
The instruction manual, although in full colour consists of just two pages.
It fails to describe how to install the dual coils. I guess as with most RDAs you’re expected to have sufficient knowledge.
There are a total of sixteen airflow slots, eight either side in line with the coils and in a vertical position.
By turning the top cap there are numerous airflow configurations to chose from, both vertical and horizontal.
The variant RDA is 24mm in diameter and is very well suited to the Topside lite kit. It’s both lightweight and compliments the black fascia and panels of the mod perfectly.
The Inner barrel shows the intricate nature of the airflow patterns available. These will range from an airy open vape to a very restrictive direct to lung.
Dovpo Topside Lite Build Deck
The four posts of the deck have been raised and angled inwards. Featuring flat head screws and sizeable post holes there’s plenty of scope for coil sizes.
With those posts being raised it’s relatively easy to snip the leg excess from underneath.
The large flat head screw at the heart of the deck acts as the squonk pin.
Tighten it down when using in traditional dripping mode and loosen it to allow squonking duties. There’s no need to swap anything out!
Mmm…not too sure if I like the idea of moving parts inside the deck but there’s less chance of mislaying a valued pin, I guess.
How Does The Dovpo Topside Lite Kit Perform?
Let’s begin by building on the Variant dual coil RDA.
I opted to use two 2.5mm inner diameter 0.4ohm Wotofo fused Clapton Ni80 coils. These usually give me tremendous flavour with little ramp up time.
The raised, angled posts meant that it was very easy to eyeball the leg length needed – the large post holes helped with my failing eyesight lol. Within seconds they were installed!
NB: If you plan to run the kit in squonk mode it’s a good idea to loosen the deck pin first, you only need to give it a few turns.
There’s a deep juice well to accommodate the juice entering from below and ample room for generous amounts of wicking due to the raised position of the coils.
Once the Variant RDA had been built on I applied generous amounts of e-liquid across the cotton in the traditional dripping manner just to help things along.Since I’m currently not in possession of any 20700 or 21700 batteries I was able to take advantage of the included 18650 adapter.
Filling The Topside Lite In Squonk Mode
I’ve only used squonk devices a few times in the past.
My experiences have shown them to be very fiddly to work with.
Having to remove the bottle, fill and then ensure the supply tube is firmly connected always meant juice all over my hands.
You can probably imagine my relief using the Topside Lite top fill method!
- Unscrew the squonk cap counter clockwise to release.
- Squeeze juice into either fill port until desired level is reached.
- Screw the squonk cap clockwise back into place. Do not over tighten.
By pouring juice down one fill port, the corresponding port will release any air pressure created.
Always a bonus!
Although the screen display is monochrome it’s very crisp, vibrant and clear to read.
You can expect it to go dim after fifteen seconds of inactivity.
After three minutes of inactivity the device will power down completely.
Five rapid clicks of the fire button will switch the Topside Lite on.
A further five clicks will switch the device off, it’s the usual drill.
Using The Menu Functions
- To enter the menu hold the fire and – button at the same time.
- Use the + button to scroll through options.
- Press the fire button to enter the sub menu.
You are given the option to change the following parameters:
- Temp Nichrome, Temp Titanium and Temp Stainless Steel
To lock the Dovpo Topside Lite press + and – together. Repeat the process to unlock.
While the device is in locked mode press the + button rapidly three times to enter stealth mode. The screen is disabled but the device can still be used.
A further three clicks of the + button will take you out of stealth mode.
To prevent the fire button from accidentally working you can disable it by pressing it three times in rapid succession. Repeating the process will enable it once again.
The Bit You’ve All Been Waiting For..Or Have Skipped To!
How’s the kit for flavour?
To be completely honest I feel a bit let down by the flavour from the Variant RDA.
Don’t get me wrong. It produces but had a tendency to bring out more of the sweetness of any juice tested.
The Variant certainly performs better with fruit profiles than bakery or custard ones.
Menthol and coolada ranges often lacked the sharpness and associated throat kick, they felt somewhat dull and lifeless on the exhale.
Compared to other squonking RDAs on the market the Variant can only be classed as average.
You won’t quite get the carefully balanced blends and nuances that leading juice manufacturers create these days.
I tested the Variant in all airflow positions and concluded that the best setting for flavour and cloud production was with the four bottom pin holes open.
This pulled the airflow under and around those coils most effectively.
There’s next to no restriction to be found with airflow wide open. Still an incredibly smooth and quiet vape but the flavour certainly suffers.
As for cloud production, it doesn’t disappoint! Dense, billowing white clouds for days, bro! No issues here at all.
At no time did I witness any turbulence and in general I received a nice warm vape at the 65W setting deployed.
It did of course become warm/hot when vaped at higher power levels but the heat never transferred to the polycarbonate body.
Dovpo Topside Lite Battery Life and Charging
There’s no two ways around it. You’re always going to get a preferred battery performance from either a 21700 or 20700 battery when using the Topside Lite Kit.
Since I tend to use 18650’s and Dovpo were kind enough to include an adapter I tested battery performance this way.
Under moderate use and vaping at 65W I managed to get just under four hours life from my 3000 mAH single cell.
When chain vaping it dropped to around two and a half.
Battery drain became significantly noticeable when the indicator bar was showing around 50% or less. Voltage and wattage were dropping like a stone.
..lest we forget circuit protection. Always thankful for that!
The vape quality remained consistent up to the point of replacing the battery.
Most experienced vapers will attest that charging an external battery within a device is not ideal.
I agree, but for once I tested for grins and giggles.
You can bring a depleted battery back to full fitness in two hours using the supplied USB cable.
I was able to note that the battery failed to hold its charge as efficiently. It took literally a few vapes before the indicator bar dropped a notch.
More disturbingly, during charge the upper area of the polycarbonate body became warm to the touch. Maybe another reason to rely solely on external units!
Moderate vaping resulted in around three hours use from the device. An hour less than by charging in a more efficient (and safer) way.
Proof, if needed that it’s always best to use a dedicated external charging device.
The male and female connectors of the squonk remained bone dry throughout the testing period which was very impressive.
Removing the squonk section to replace a battery was seamless! Those magnetic contacts really work a treat.
Filling the bottle was an absolute walk in the park and my fingers remained juice free. A rarity for me! lol
There’s usually a Negative Neil lurking and this time it takes the form of the fire button itself. When the device becomes idle it can sometimes take a few clicks to wake it.
It plays no importance when firing to vape but response times overall are merely average. Maybe to be expected from a single cell mod.
- Lightweight design thanks to PCTG and polycarbonate material
- Extremely easy to switch between RDA and squonk mode options
- Squonk connecting pins remain bone dry. No leaking
- Easy to read screen even in direct sunlight
- Viewable juice levels through semi transparent squonk bottle
- Fire button unresponsive when in idle mode (subjective con)
- Variant RDA not the best match (average flavour)
- Plastic fascia prone to scratching
Final Review Verdict
I’m extremely impressed with everything about the Dovpo Topside Lite.
The design and build quality is immaculate and everything just works!
From the marriage of the squonk connectors, ease of squonking itself and the ability to switch vape modes in seconds, everything combines to make this the perfect device.
Personally I would have preferred to see a different RDA with the kit – a single coil RDA would be more compatible for the 90W output.
Of course this can easily be remedied by using one of your own so no real biggy!
The Kit is able to handle tank sizes of up to 26mm diameter. That’s just another sign of the total versatility on offer.
Indeed, versatility is the major player here.
Who Would I Recommend The Dovpo Topside Lite Kit To?
Without doubt an intermediate and preferably advanced vaper that has good battery safety knowledge. Using a single 18650 means that you’re handling them quite often when using the Variant RDA.
This version of the Topside is also somewhat cheaper than its “variants” (sorry!) making it ideal for the first time buyer.
In fact the Dovpo Topside Lite Kit is the perfect introduction into the world of squonking, and without the hassle of constantly removing the bottle.