ModPodLabs Stempod Review – Baddest Budget Vape?
510 herb atomizers have spiked in popularity, and the ModPodLabs StemPod Si and Stempod OG are some of the cheapest yet strongest around. How does it stack up to the likes of the other 510 herb vapes and is it really all that good? Check out our Stempod vape review here for more info!
If you want to grab your first dry herb vaporizer, check out the Best budget herb vapes list for more good herb vaporizers! If you want a good portable dry herb vape, then head on over to our Best portable herb vapes list instead.
How easy is it to use?
The Stempod Si is I guess what we can consider to be an ‘advanced’ vape. Tinkerers and hobbyists rejoice, this device has tons of versatility at the cost of a learning curve.
The Stempod Si will take some getting used to and some setup is definitely required. First you’ll want a mod that does TCR (temperature control well. In particular, ones with a DNA board or that work with ArcticFox or Tubo_MyEvic firmwares.
Once you put the device on a compatible mod and dial in both the resistance and TCR values, you should be good to go. That itself will take some time though, so expect that! With that in mind, you can set the temperature as high or low as you want with full control and even temperature stepping, cruise control modes, etc.
Load up the stem with some coarsely ground herb and tamp it down slightly, so airflow can pass through with ease! With the Stempod Si, cleaning is also quite simple as the glass stem cleans out just like any Arizer vape – let it soak in some ispropyl alcohol for a good 10 minutes, rinse off, and it’ll be good as new!
How long does the battery last?
Those powerful coils suck out a lot of juice as a result, and battery life is rather mediocre. From a fully charged 3000mAh battery, you can get around 3-4 bowls if you’re smart with your usage. You’ll definitely want a dual battery mod or something that takes removable cells, with some to carry around in case you want to swap out.
Too, we recommend an external 18650 battery charger so you charge multiple cells at once and ensure the safety of those batteries. They’re powerful and relatively dangerous!
Bowl Size & Heating System (convection conduction induction?)
how long does it take to heat up? How big is the chamber/bowl? Good for micro dosing? Can you adjust the chamber? Type of material it can vaporizer (dry herb wax or oil?)
The bowl on the Stempod Si is in the stem, which uses basket screens. You can customize this size however and fit from anywhere down from 0.05 grams up to 0.3 grams! The versatility is quite strong and you can really go mega-dosing or microdosing if you so desire.
The powerful, full-convection heater comes up to speed in a rapid 5 seconds, giving you a true on-demand experience. You can also do wax concentrates quite well by applying a small amount of material directly onto warm coils themselves. Be careful though and only use very small amounts with wattage not much more than 20 watts!
How’s the Vapor Quality?
what material is the vapor pathway? is the vapor pathway separation from electronics. vapor production flavor and taste. ABV consistency. Active ingredient extraction ability. Airflow restriciton
The Stempod Si really delivers top notch vapor. What with the super strong convection heating thanks to its powerful coils and however much juice you can toss at it, you can extract heavy hits with great flavor no problem. Stirring is definitely going to extract your bud better, helping it come out nice and roasty brown.
Too, the airflow can be adjusted on both the Stempod models, allowing you to tailer and tune the experience however you please. Overall, the Stempods have among some of the best vapor quality around, matching pace with even the likes of the S&B Crafty+ and Firefly 2+.
How Portable and Discreet is it?
The overall carry size will depend on the mod that you match with it, however for best performance and such we often recommend going for a 2 battery mod. As a result, the Stempod with stem is quite large and significantly bigger than most e-cig setups even. While we say it’s a bit more pocket-able than the likes of the Mighty, it’s not quite ideal as a portable dry herb vape.
The Stempod Si with full convection heating lets out not too much smell and when in and out of use it’ll put out a lot less scent than something like the Pax 3 vape. Since it’ll mostly resemble your average e-cig, the Stempod Si is relatively stealthy, but the size will really hinder it.
What the Stempod Si comes with
The Stempod and Si come with the body itself, build deck with coils installed, spare kanthal coils, an Alan key wrench, 2 basket screens, and packaging. This is really all you’ll need, though a few spare basket screens and other stems are really great upgrades to consider. It’s also highly recommended to grab some stainless steel coils so you have access to temperature control mode rather than just pure wattage mode. For what you pay, it’s a pretty great piece of kit.
Manufacturer reputation and dependability
ModPodLabs is a pretty new manufacturer and one of the originals to work on the 510 herb tank idea alongside RBT and the Splinter. There is no specific warranty but hardware problems are dealt with on a case-by-case basis. The company has been great with communicating with the community and we’re well impressed by them. For what you pay, you’ll be well sorted out and considering the customizable nature of it all, you can replace the heater or customize stem options as you like.
Who is this vaporizer for
This specific 510 dry herb vape is best suited for those who like to or aren’t afraid of tinkering and toying. If you’re familiar with e-cigs already then the Stempod will be a breeze and is well suited to you. If you want top notch performance in a well-priced package, and don’t mind compromising portability, then the Stempod is right for you!
If you want something that has no setup struggles and works perfect out of the box, then it may not be the best pick for you. Too, if you want the best portable dry herb vape in a small size, then it’s also probably a bit bulky for your liking. Then we’d recommend something like the Utillian 722 or Airvape X instead.
Both the Stempod OG and Stempod Si are terrific picks and really great portable herb vapes – if you’re not scared of a bit of learning curve and willing to toy about with resistances and TCR. You can then expect some of the best performance any portable dry herb vape has to offer, at the cost of some committed time and size.
The differences between the Si and OG are quite minimal and while we prefer the build quality of the OG more, the Si is definitely a fine choice and good if you want a budget herb vape and already have a vape mod. 510 dry herb atomizers are becoming well popular now and a great pick for those who aren’t afraid of a little customization!
If convection heating is what you want but the Stempod seems a bit complex, check our Best Convection herb vapes for some other powerful units without the learning curve.
Tips for best performance
How fine or course of a grinder should be used. How tight or lose should the chamber be packed or can it be half packed or is there a chamber reducer? how to draw vapor. the best temperature . to stir or not to stir
- Use ArcticFox or Tubo_MyEvic softwares to really bump the performance up a notch
- Replace the coils every 6 months or so
- Medium-coarse ground herb, lightly packed to allow airflow through
- Use 20w and touch a very small amount of wax to the coils for use with concentrate.
- Adjust your resistance by increments of 0.002 up if it’s running too cold, the inverse if too warm.
- A 2 battery mod will increase carry size but help battery life hugely.
- Swap the kanthal coils for stainless steel for TCR mode.