The SMOK G-Priv 3 as the name suggests, is the latest in the hugely popular series of mods and kits.
I was a huge fan of the SMOK TFV-4 back in 2015, back then SMOK was a huge brand on the vape scene and still are, with a lot of very loyal fans.
However, I think, although the SMOK brand is still one of the big names in the industry, they seem to struggle to stand out, or maybe that’s just me.
Founded in 2010, SMOK boasts on their website that “SMOK products are enjoyed by over 80 million consumers worldwide”.
Although I can’t help question that figure, according to the BBC / Euromonitor International, there aren’t that many vapers world wide!
Maybe the figure relates more to device sales and not individual customers.
I can’t think of any SMOK devices that have cast a cloud over the company.
They are also among the companies that have recently merged Pods and Mods, with the launch of their RPM Pod-Mod range.
What Can We Expect From The Smok G-Priv 3
SMOK states the Kit has been upgraded in both hardware and software.
The first thing I found that has changed on the mod, is the touch screen which has gone from 2 inch to 2.4 inch.
The mod is 2mm wider, just shy of 1mm thicker and 7grams heavier.
Using the new IQ-G Chipset and a 32-bit processor, it can kick out up to 230W, fire in 0.001 seconds and handle a current output of up to 50A.
The batteries are still accessible via a removable back panel, which I am super happy about, I’m fed-up of hinged battery doors breaking on me!
Not only does the G-Priv 3 have USB-C but it also has a 2A Charge rating and balance charging, which is great for those of us who don’t want to fork out for an external battery charger.
The TFV16 Lite Tank has a 5ml E-liquid capacity (2ml in the EU). It comes with 2 coils and between them they have a “best” wattage range of 60W – 90W.
SMOK has put the top fill gasket (rubber seal) into the top cap rather than around the fill hole, to give the filling system a cleaner look.
The top cap also has a locking button to avoid the dreaded pocket leakage.
SMOK has also given the TFV16 Lite a higher base, to provide more airflow space, which should help produce ‘huge vapour and rich flavour’.
This kit was sent to me free of charge for the purpose of this review and as always my thoughts and opinions are my own.
Inside The Box
- 1x G-Priv 3 Mod
- 1x TFV16 Lite Tank (5ml)
- 1x Conical Mesh 0.2ohm Coil (pre-installed)
- 1x Dual Mesh 0.15ohm coil
- 1x Spare Glass
- 1x USB Cable
- 1x User Manual
- Spare Parts (Rubbers o-rings and seals)
- Size: 85 x 54 x 28mm (24mm base)
- Weight: 188g
- Resistance Range: 0.1-2.5Ohm / 0.5 – 2Ohm (TC)
- Power Range: 1 – 230W / 10-230W (TC)
- Output Voltage: 0.5-8.2V
- Charging: 5V / 2A
- Charger: USB-C
- Battery: Dual 18650
TFV16 Lite Tank
- Size: 58.5 x 28mm
- Weight: 73g
- E-liquid Capacity: 5ml (EU: 2ml)
- Material: Stainless Steel
- 2.4” Touch Screen
- 0.001s Firing Time
- Balance Charging
- Pass code Locking System
- Touch Screen Lock & Firing Lock
- Intelligent Atomiser Recognition
- Puff Monitoring System
- 10 Second Cut-off
- Short Circuit Protection
- Over-heating Protection
- Low Battery Protection
Design and Build Quality
Lets get address the elephant in the room.
The Smok G-Priv 3 looks extremely similar to its predecessors; the G-Priv 2 and the original G-Priv.
I don’t think that’s a bad thing though, it does fit in my hand pretty comfortably.
It comes in 4 colours – Black, Prism Gold, Purple Red and Prism Chrome – and each has its own shell pattern on the battery cover.
Lets take a closer look.
The Smok G-Priv 3 Mod
At 5.4cm wide and 2.8cm cm thick it’s not too big. The edges are chamfered which makes all the difference when holding the mod, the lack of edges really does, make it much nicer to hold, and makes it feel a lot less block like.
Although the design of the mod isn’t greatly different from the previous versions, I like it.
The G-Priv 3 Touch Screen
The 2.4” Touch screen is an ideal size, measuring at roughly 32mm wide and 53mm high I don’t think the screen is too big nor too small.
The interface looks pretty good.
SMOK has used a ‘rev counter’ style design in the centre which incorporates the puff timer and the wattage quite well.
Along the bottom is the resistance, voltage and puff counter and just above those, is the power adjustment buttons.
At the top, there is the menu button, screen lock icon (if the screen is locked) and the individual battery level indicators.
The screen is sensitive and really easy to use.
From the home screen there are only 3 buttons to press: power up/down and the menu button.
This makes the interface really easy to use, because the buttons are so separated you are not required to press them with procession, pressing just above or below the button will still work.
We’ll take a closer look at navigating the menus in the ‘Quick Start’ Section.
The theme colour can also be changed, the options are; Blue, Purple, Yellow, Red, White or Green.
The G-Priv 3 has 2 Buttons the main button (the Fire button) is a side button, it elegantly follows the shape of the mod and doesn’t protrude.
It measures at roughly 21x51mm making it nice and easy to press but either squeezing the device with your whole hand or with just 1 finger.
However because it doesn’t protrude, you don’t find yourself pressing it by accident when walking around it it in your hand.
The second button is above the fire button and is there to lock, show and hide the screen.
Charging the G-Priv 3
For a long time I’ve advised people that have a device with removable batteries to try and charge their batteries with an external battery charger at least once a week.
But then mods (like the G-Priv 3) now include balanced charging.
The big difference here is that the mod actively charges the batteries to the same voltage.
Without balanced charging, over time the charge becomes unbalanced and therefore the batteries don’t last as long between charging.
Never rebalancing the battery charge will decrease the overall life span of the batteries, although it isn’t necessarily dangerous.
In short the balance charging feature looks after your batteries that little bit more, just like a external battery charger would.
How long will it take your batteries to fully charge depends entirely on what batteries your are using.
For instance, if you are using 2x 2500mAH charging at 2A should take approximately 2.5 hours.
The G-Privs use a 510 connection.
The 20mm connection plate sits on top of the mod, to one side just above the buttons.
When connected, the 24mm base of the TFV16 Lite tank fits quite flush to the edges of the mod.
The TFV16 Lite Tank
The TFV16 Lite shares the unique SMOK look.
For those who don’t know what I mean, if you take a quick look at the other TFV tanks, they are all very similar looking – especially outwardly.
It has a high base, the airflow band alone stands at 9mm tall, SMOK say this provides more airflow space, which in turn produces richer flavour and huge vapour.
The top filling system is a hinged swinging system with a lock release button.
I have noticed with the TFV16 Lite (and other Smok tanks that have the same top fill design) the top doesn’t align perfectly when closing it.
This means you have to press down slightly for the top fill to close, however this could be intentional, to prevent it from being too loose.
The tank comes with an 810 resin drip tip, which is extremely tight fitting, it almost feels like it shouldn’t be removable, but it is.
The hole for the 810 driptip is also raised from the top tank.
Smok TFV16 Lite Tank Quick Start
How To Fill The Smok TFV16
- Press the button on the tank and twist the drip tip anti clockwise
- Pour e-liquid into the slot (not the centre hole)
- Close the top
- Leave for 5 minutes to allow the liquid to soak into the coil
Read more about best tank practices such as priming.
How to change the SMOK TFV16 coils
- Unscrew the base
- Pull out the used coil from the tank
- Insert the new coil
- Screw the base back on.
SMOK G-Priv 3 Mod Quick Start
SMOK G-Priv 3 Battery Installation
- Lift the groove on the bottom of the back panel to remove the battery cover
- Insert 2 18650 Batteries in accordance with the (+) and (-) inside the battery bays)
- Replace the battery cover with the groove at the bottom.
SMOK G-Priv 3 Button Operation
- Power on: press Fire button 5 times in 2 seconds
- Power off: press Fire button 5 times in 2 seconds then confirm on the screen or navigate to Settings > General > Power Off
- Lock/unlock fire button & touch screen: press Fire button 3 times
- To vape: press and hold fire button while it is not locked.
- Show/Hide the screen: press secondary button once.
- Lock/Unlock touch screen: Long press the secondary button until the padlock icon appears/disappears from the top of the screen
Unlock the touch screen by holding the secondary button, until the padlock icon disappears.
Press the menu icon (4 squares) in the top left corner of the screen.
To exit the menu either press the fire button or the home icon in the top left corner.
The menu layout is as such:
- Preheat setting (soft, normal, hard, Max)
- Wattage Setting
- Material (Ni, Ti, SS)
- My Mode (4 presets consisting of Wattage, Preheat, Flavour and Nicotine content)
- Puff(Max puff setting, current puff count and manual reset)
- factory reset
- power off
- Chip (chip info)
- 6 colours to choose from
- Screen Timer in seconds
How does the SMOK G-Priv 3 Kit Perform?
With both coils, I used them with Perfect Pear Drop by Ferocious Flavours a 70VG/30PG mix for a couple of days, the flavour was great and the vapour was fairly smooth, considering pear drops flavours are usually quite dry flavours.
But to get a proper grasp on the flavour profiles through the varying wattage, I wanted to experience a really fruity flavour.
So half way through the week, with each coil, I switched to the Trash Candy Sherbets which is also 70/30 PG/VG mix.
SMOK G-Priv 3 Conical Mesh 0.2Ohm Coil
This coil is powered by nexMesh technology and the conical shape of the coil is designed to maximize the bottom airflow, which makes theoretical sense to me.
Made with Kanthal this coil has a ‘Best’ recommended wattage range of 60-85W.
As usual, we will start down low.
At 40W after a few 2 second puffs there isn’t much to shout out.
Very little flavour with a very small cloud.
It’s also quite dry and trickles the throat.
50W is still under the recommended range.
Although the flavour starts to come through, it is still too weak to make out the profiles – the vapour production has grown significantly.
At Recommend Wattage
60W is the minimum ‘Best’ recommend and I’ve noticed something interesting.
Usually with lower wattage a smaller airflow is better.
It’s simple, with less vapour you want less ‘pure air’ and vice versa.
However at 60W you get far more flavour with the airflow fully open then you do with the airflow set low.
Although the flavour doesn’t fill the mouth the profiles are now prominent and we’ve got a decent cloud.
Half way through the recommended wattage (76W), there is a fulfilling, full mouth flavour.
Now the sweet, mixed fruit sherbet flavour can be truly enjoyed as the pleasingly smooth and thick cloud rolls out your mouth.
At 85W there is no doubt that this coil can provide excellent flavour and vapour.
At 76W the Sherbet flavour filled the mouth but now it’s are flooding the mouth.
The vapour is still smooth and very plentiful – I don’t think you can ask for any more from a tank, I’m very impressed.
Above and Beyond
I didn’t think the flavour could get any better, but at 95W it has ramped up that little bit more – it’s pretty awesome.
However, throughout the week I have pushed it upto 95-100W from time to time and after five or six puffs, you start to get a bit of a dry burning.
Not a full dry hit but the flavour does start to struggle.
So I would advise ‘Chain Vapours’ to keep to 85W to prevent getting a dry hit, or at least give it some time to pull the liquid into the coil.
SMOK G-Priv 3 0.15Ohm Dual Mesh Coil
I usually prefer dual coils over single, triple or quad, but I can’t see how the dual can be any better than the single we have just discussed.
Made from Nickel-Chrome this coil has a ‘Best’ recommend wattage range of 60-90W.
Below Recommend Wattage
Starting at 40W, we get better results than we did with the 0.2ohm coil.
The flavour is a little bit more prominent, in the way you can taste a hint of flavour and there is a little cloud.
The big difference here, is you don’t get the tickly, dry sensation that you get with the 0.2ohm coil at 40W.
50W is still very weak on flavour, but it is still smooth and we start to see the cloud grow.
At Recommend Wattage
60W is definitely the gateway of what is to come.
Although the flavour is still fairly weak, the flavour profiles are now more prominent, to the extent you can tell what profile is.
The cloud is still pretty small.
I know a few people that would find 60W very satisfying – not me, I want more!
Half way through the recommended wattage is 75W, and again there is a very noticeable difference.
You can feel the smooth flavour rushing past your throat on the way in.
Exhaling provides a decent full mouth flavour and although we have a decent sized cloud, it’s not quite as thick as it was with the single coil at this point.
At max recommend power (90W), we get a nice thick cloud, but the flavour production doesn’t seem to have stepped up from what it was at 75W.
The flavour is prominent and it fills the mouth however it isn’t flooding the mouth like 85W did with the 0.2ohm coil – I’m a little disappointed.
Above and Beyond
At 105W, we get closer to what I was hoping for, a prominent flavour that floods the mouth.
The vapour is huge, thick and smooth.
What’s more, I haven’t had a single dry hit or reduction in flavour.
115W is like heaven, to start with.
The flavour really floods the mouth with great prominence, however after a few puffs the flavour fades as the coils struggles to pull in the e-liquid fast enough.
SMOK G-Priv 3 Coil Summary
Starting from 40W the dual (0.15ohm) coil is the better coil, unfortunately it doesn’t grow with the wattage as much as the Single (0.2ohm coil).
When you get to minimum and maximum wattage the single coil produces more flavour vapour.
The flavour produced by the Conical Mesh 0.2Ohm Coil towards the high end of its recommended wattage is truly impressive.
SMOK G-Priv 3 Airflow
With the TFV16 Lite, SMOK seems to have focused a lot on the airflow.
For example the conical shaped coil and the extra tall airflow band.
It is quite refreshing to see a manufacturer think outside the box, rather than just play about with airflow sizes.
The truth is, the airflow isn’t the biggest airflow, but it is plenty big enough and as far as I can see, the extra thought and effort than has gone into the internal airflow path has really paid off.
The airflow is adjustable and can be fully turned off.
SMOK G-Priv 3 Batteries
I can’t accurately tell you what to expect here because there is a lot of variables, including what mAh batteries you are using.
I can tell you that my 2x 3000mAh batteries (6,000mAh in total) lasted me between 1.5 – 2 days when using it about 80-90W.
I can also do some quick math…
With 2x 3000mAh batteries, firing at 60W will give you roughly 1300 seconds of puff time – that’s a 2 second puff every minute for just under 11 hours.
With the same batteries, firing at 90W will give you roughly 880 seconds of puff time – that’s a 2 second puff every minute for just under 7 and a half hours.
And Lets be realistic 60 puffs an hour, is pretty extreme usage.
SMOK G-Priv 3 Coil Life and Leaking
There hasn’t been any leaking – pretty much none.
There was a day that I didn’t use the tank for about 6-8 hours and even then, there wasn’t any signs that the tank had or was about to leak.
I’ve used both coils for a week and they’re still going strong… in fact they’re pretty much still white – another thing I’m impressed about.
A few little things I want to mention.
Firstly I always look at devices that are touch screen or just have big screens and have doubts about their durability.
I drop the mod from a high pub table onto a hard floor the other night by accident.
Although the battery cover came off, the mod seems completely unscathed.
Maybe I was lucky, either way, I was surprised and impressed.
The other thing, is something or nothing but it really quite annoys me.
The ribbon inside the battery pack is placed between the two batteries, rather than to one side and it’s quite long (just over 10cm).
Because it is in the centre it can only be used to make 1 battery easy removable and because the ribbon it so long it’s not too simple to put the battery cover on without the ribbon overhanging.
I did also attempt to put the ribbon under 1 battery, then back over it and under the next battery but that only leaves a very short amount of ribbon.
Like I said it’s something or nothing, I suppose the simple solution is to grab some scissors and cut it down to a size that I would prefer.
Looking at it like that, it’s better for the ribbon to be too long than too short.
- Easy to use
- Looks good
- Feels good to hold
- Fast Charging
- Balance Charging
- Battery Cover – not hinge
- Great Airflow
- Locking Top Fill
- No leaking
- Removable drip tip
- Push Pull Coils
- Great Flavour
- A little bit heavy
- Both provided coils use similar wattage
You only have to glance at the Pros and Cons to know how I feel about the Smok G-Priv 3 Kit.
I think it is great.
I have really struggled to find things I don’t like about it.
And the only things I am unimpressed with is the lack of power variety in the provided coils.
I wouldn’t mind if the coils overlapped but covering the same watt range is pretty poor.
I like how SMOK has made it high tech but haven’t filled it with novelty features, they have built a great vape, that is designed to be a vape and nothing else.
It looks good, It feels good, It tastes good and is capable of producing amazing flavour as well as awesome vapour without draining all of your battery life.
What more could you ask for?
Do you already have the SMOK G-Priv 3 or planning to get it?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!