The Uwell Caliburn pod system has become quite a crowd pleaser and from what I have heard could be a worthy rival for my beloved Smok Nord.
So as you can tell I have been dying to get my hands on one!
Uwell tend to pack the flavour into their kits, I own the incredible Nunchaku kit and other kits with a lot of fans include the new Amulet Watch vape and the Crown 4 kit. (P.S. I have tried the Amulet and it really surprised me with the flavour it was kicking out!).
So can this little, low price pod kit really deliver the flavour? Is it one of the best pod vapes available? Let’s get stuck in and find out!
What Can We Expect From The Uwell Caliburn Pod Kit?
The Uwell Caliburn is a small device designed to operate at low power with higher resistance coils.
Pod kits are usually designed to be used with higher nicotine e-liquid and in general favour MTL (Mouth to Lung) vapers who want a sensation similar to smoking.
We tell you more about this in our Guide to DTL and MTL vaping styles.
So the Caliburn ticks all these boxes – the battery part of the device contains a 520mAh battery which you can recharge via the Micro USB port in the base.
There is a battery indicator light to inform you of the capacity remaining. The Caliburn can be fired by pressing the fire button or can also be activated by simply inhaling once the device has been turned on.
If you are wondering what the “child safety” stuff means – basically although this is a draw activated device you can still turn it off manually to try and prevent little hands and gobs firing it up.
You add your own e-liquid to the pod which is where the coil also lives. The coil has a 1.4ohm resistance which should work excellently with high nicotine and nicotine salt e-liquids.
There are 6 colour options to choose from – Black, Red, Blue, Grey, Pink and Iris Purple.
This device was sent to me free of charge for review purposes but as always I will report back honestly on my findings of the device I have received.
What’s In The Box
- Uwell Caliburn Battery with pod
- Uwell Caliburn Pod
- Micro USB cable
Uwell Caliburn Pod Kit Features
- Size: 110×21.2×11.6mm
- Material: Aluminium Alloy, PP, PC, ABS
- E-liquid Capacity: 2ml
- Battery: 520mAh (internal)
- Output: 11W (max)
- Pod resistance: 1.4ohm
- Button or automatic fire control
- Fault diagnosis function
- Top fill pods
Build Quality & Design
I received the Uwell Caliburn in the Grey colour.
The packaging was well laid out and a massive high five to Uwell for including a spare pod which means I can test different flavours in this kit!
The instructions are pretty good too with diagrams showing how to do most of the simple tasks.
The looks of this kit whilst in no way offensive – are slightly dull. The finish and weight almost feels a bit “cheap” which is surprising.
I suppose the price point of this kit does mean it won’t have a “premium” finish. But when you consider the Smok Nord kit is cheaper but feels a lot more substantial you will understand what I mean.
It feels very plastic-y – the body is apparently Aluminium Alloy but it does feel like plastic with a matt metallic style finish.
On the rear of the device is just the “Uwell” logo.
The sides of the device are lovely and smooth with ridges and there are no nasty sharp bits to drive you mad. On the side faces are also cut outs for the e-liquid viewing windows in the pod.
Below the viewing window on each side is a curious little hole. I did think this was the airflow inlets but even covering those you can still inhale and trigger the fire mechanism?
The front of the device houses a nice clear LED indicator and the fire button. The “Caliburn” logo is also on the lower part of the front face.
My fire button was a bit strange. It kept sticking and the top edge had to be “clicked” back out. The firing operation didn’t stay on thankfully but it did stick a lot.
The base houses the Micro USB charge port and all the required legal logos.
Despite feeling a bit lightweight and cheap the build quality is perfectly fine and no issues with rattles at all.
If I thought the actual device body looked cheap then sadly the pod is even worse. But I do have to keep reminding myself that the pod is actually disposable – rather than designed to be hard wearing.
Issues with the drip tip / mouthpiece…
Basically you remove this to refill the pod – I have had a nightmare trying to remove it.
There is nothing to grip hold of and resorted to a screwdriver to prise it off for my first refill.
Then I found if I bit the mouthpiece I could pull it off with my teeth. See the photo below of my chewed mouthpiece – I have had to brighten the photo a lot to try and show it!
Then it must have loosened off a lot as I can now pull it on and off ok – but it was a struggle to start with.
The mouthpiece is a very thin almost flexible plastic, like a thicker form of the tray in a box of chocolates. Hence why to me the pod finish feels kind of cheap. Plus for me the filling has been a pain which is a shame as everyone else I have spoken to have had zero issues with their pods!
There are windows on the side of the pod to view the e-liquid levels but for me again I am struggling to see through these enough and just end up removing the pod to check the level.
For instance on the photo below which is heavily lit – these are two different pods, one is half full and the other is full. Hard to see isn’t it.
Once the daft mouthpiece is removed filling is a doddle, there are two fill ports so no air locks but I have found I have had to fill both sides sometimes as they don’t even out very quickly.
You may find larger bottle nozzles might not fit into the fill ports. I used a 50ml bottle and it only just managed to fill the pod without spillage. Bigger nozzles will leave half the liquid running down the side of the pod I think.
The airflow on the Caliburn is not adjustable but for me it is a perfect MTL draw whether firing with the fire button or using the inhale activation methods.
Quick Set-up Guide
The device does come with a pod installed but thankfully the pod is isolated using a plastic strip to prevent accidental firing before you have filled the pod with liquid.
Always fill the pod before trying to switch on the device as accidental firing will burn out the coil and the pod will have to be binned!
I will guide you through the set-up below!
- Turn On/Off = 5 quick presses of the fire button
- To vape = hold down the fire button or inhale for automatic activation
Battery capacity remaining
The battery capacity remaining is displayed on the LED indicator light whilst vaping which changes colours according to the capacity:
- Green LED – 60% or above battery capacity remaining
- Blue LED – 30-60% capacity remaining
- Red LED – below 30% remaining
- Red LED flashing 10 times – battery low and devices stops working until recharged.
- Short circuit = LED will flash Red 3 times and the device will not fire.
- 10 second maximum fire time = if the device is fired constantly for 10 seconds the fire activation will cut off to prevent overheating. This works for either draw activation or button press fire.
- Low voltage protection = LED flashes red 10 times and device cuts out.
- Auto inhale failure = if the automatic inhale firing mechanism fails the device will automatically switch over to button firing only – i.e. you need to press the button to vape.
How To Change The Uwell Caliburn Pod
If you accidentally use the device with the pod empty, or if you have a fault or if the flavour drops you will need to install a new pod. You cannot change the coil on this device.
- The pod is held in magnetically so it is pretty simple to pull out of the device body.
- Simply pull and overcome the magnetic resistance.
- If installing a new pod make sure to fill as described below.
- Push a new pod into the body until you hear a faint click and the pod is installed!
How To Fill The Uwell Caliburn Pod
Uwell apparently recommend to keep the liquid level in the pod above the “min” mark at all times. Slightly annoying if you want to swap e-liquid but I would imagine you would have to wash out the pod to remove the remaining liquid before changing flavour?
Or you could just vape through until the new flavour comes through.
- It may be possible to fill the pod without removing it from the device but I couldn’t manage it!
- Remove the pod as described above.
- Pull off the black mouthpiece part of the pod. I found this really hard to remove – I ended up prising it off with a screwdriver the first time, then used my teeth to pull it off after that. It did loosen up after a few refills though!
- Fill through either of the filling ports – do not fill through the centre hole.
- If the liquid seems to not be filling both sides of the pod you can swap fill ports.
- Watch the level through the clear part of the pod.
- Replace the black mouthpiece and it should click into place.
- If using a new pod make sure to leave to stand for at least 10 minutes to make sure the coil and wicking have sufficient e-liquid.
How To Charge The Battery
You can charge this device at up to 1A charging. For instance my old PC USB ports will only output 0.5A – some newer chargers can output 2A. So make sure you are using the correct output for the current required.
- Using the included USB cable install the small end into the USB port on the base of the device.
- Install the large end of the cable into a suitable USB outlet.
- During charging the LED indicator light will cycle through the colours as the charge increases. When fully charged the Green LED stays lit constantly.
I found it took around 50 mins to charge from empty to full using the 0.5A USB port on my PC. Which is pretty good!
How Does the Uwell Caliburn Pod Kit Perform?
As this is a high resistance device mainly designed for use with Nicotine Salt or high nicotine e-liquid I first used the 50%VG / 50%PG Apollo Nic Salt liquid. This is a Tobacco flavour in 20mg nicotine strength.
I know the filling is a bit tricky and it is not the most “aesthetically pleasing” pod kit right now – but man the vape off it is beautiful.
Perfect MTL airflow – also the auto inhale firing is super quick and no lag between inhaling and firing. With some devices it feels like you need to suck a squid through a net curtain to get them to fire. Nothing like that here.
The flavour is just perfect and on a par for me with the Smok Nord. I have held the Nord in very high regard and every pod kit in Mouth to Lung (MTL) configuration has not reached the same heights for flavour or vape experience as the Nord.
The Vapour is pretty impressive for a MTL device with a high resistance coil too – much more than I expected. I really love vaping on the Caliburn!
With Higher VG E-liquid
As I had a spare pod I thought I might try some thicker e-liquid the 70%VG IVG Bubblegum which I love to see how that would fare.
I am happy to report the Caliburn is even coping well with 70%VG e-liquid!
Obviously the power and airflow is not there for a real sub ohm Direct to Lung (DTL) performance such as the Smoant Pasito with the 0.6ohm mesh coil which was lovely for high VG.
But this is performing admirably – no dry hits and a great flavour still! Nice one Uwell – you really are the kings of flavour!
Pod / Coil Life
I am using this a lot and so far have had 5 days from the same pod with no drop in flavour at all. My mouthpiece is cracking after my ham-fisted “biting removal” technique – but you can swap this for another!
I will update the review when this pod finally kicks the bucket and let you know how long it lasted!
Well I got 13 days out of this pod and only changed the pod as I wanted to have a different flavour – so the pod life could be still longer than this!
Obviously this is a huge variable due to personal vaping habits, e-liquid and nicotine strength.
However to give you an idea using 20mg nicotine salt e-liquid I got 6.5 hours of vaping regularly.
For the last hour of use the power really dropped off and it was noticeable as the vape was quite weak.
By the time the red LED indicator was lit I was starting to get e-liquid in my mouth as it wasn’t powerful enough to atomise fully. I got about 10 vapes before the device finally conked after the red light warning.
So I have to assume the output is not regulated as such – it will diminish as the battery charge decreases.
- THROAT HIT!!
- Quick firing with inhale sensor
- Additional button fire option
- No leaks or malfunctions
- Feels a bit lightweight and cheap
- Pod refilling for me was a bit tricky
- Larger e-liquid bottle nozzles may not fit in the filling port. I have a 50ml IVG bottle and it only just was able to fill the pod without it spilling.
- Vape can get weak at the lower end of battery charge remaining
- I do wish the battery was a bit bigger, the Nord has a 1100mAh battery which suits me better as I am charging up the Caliburn a lot.
Final Review Verdict
Yes this isn’t the prettiest pod mod I have ever used and there are much better refill designs out there but…
I adore the Uwell Caliburn!
In fact I even miss it when it is on charge! Sadly it is on charge a lot more than I would like it to be. My Nords have a 1100mAh battery and I have two of those to get me through a whole day. The Caliburn I have to charge quite a lot as the vape becomes pretty weak when the blue light has been on for a while.
This is the first pod device in a long time which can actually rival my Smok Nord for MTL nic salt vaping. I have lots of vape gear – most of which has been sat on the shelf idle whilst my 2 Smok Nord kits take on all the hard work.
A lot of people might not agree with my appraisal of the refilling and the looks of the kit – that is cool we are all different. I do have some issues with the joints on my hands and fingers hence why I probably find this very difficult.
I know I have been super critical in this review – that is my job – to report back on what I find – good and bad. But on sheer vaping pleasure the Uwell Caliburn is an absolute beauty!
Did you buy the Uwell Caliburn Pod kit? What did you think? Let us know in the comments below!