- Created: 29 December 2010
I expressed some skepticism over Bloog's MaxXFusion KR8-based ecig in an ECF forum thread. The thread in question read like an affiliate ad, and I politely pointed out the humor in one of the lines from the original post considering the context.
Next thing I knew I had a PM from leaford, one of the people behind Bloog, in my inbox. He very politely stood up for his product and offered to send me an evaluation unit. I am always willing to review anything vaping related, so I thanked him and said I was looking forward to it. I am always impressed by people who keep their cool under fire. People in general are far too quick to forget their manners on the internet, and leaford's calm and persuasive manner of speaking won me over immediately, especially after I had indirectly cast aspersions on his product.
The Bloog MaxXFusion showed up at Castle Vapenstein yesterday. I am having a rough go of it vaping-wise this week, as The Creature infected me with the crud and my taste buds are out of commission and my throat is killing me. If nothing else, this taught me to have some menthol juice on hand for days like this. As a result, juice reviews are stacking up til I am back in the saddle, but I was so impressed with the MaxXFusion I thought I would take the opportunity and do my evaluation of it. I opened the box after it had been in from the cold for a while, screwed a carto on the battery and took a blast, and the result was far more satisfying than I was expecting.
So today we head to The Lab for the infrequent hardware review. Let's put this little KR8-based device through some critical observation and see how it stacks up on its own merits and against those of the venerable 510. Before we enter, I want to state that this is the first KR8 I've had my hands on. My entire vaping life has revolved around 510 hardware.
The external finish of the MaxXFusion battery has a satin feel to it. The battery feels like it has a thin, rubberized coating on it. The cartomizer feels somewhat satiny as well, but in the case of the carto it's a sticker. The battery has a nice, tactile quality to it with its soft, satin finish. It just feels like a nice device.
The size of the Bloog MaxXFusion is slightly longer and bigger in diameter than a standard 510. Also note that the cartomizer is shorter than the atomizer-cartridge assembly on a 510, making use of those extra millimeters with a superior battery.
The mah rating of the MaxXFusion battery is 320mah, compared to the 180 mah of the standard 510 battery. We all know that the battery is the Achilles' heel of the 510, and this unit promises almost twice the capacity. Under real world testing I got 3 hours and 40 minutes of moderately heavy vaping off the battery before I needed to charge it. That is a 3 hour and 40 minute chunk of real time where I pretty much chain vaped most of the time. That is outstanding for a cigarette-sized battery. *The following day I was getting 2 1/2 hours on a battery, which seems more realistic for heavy use. That still represents great performance for this type of battery.
Right off the bat, the MaxXFusion impresses with its form factor. It's the classic cigarette-shaped device, but the thing that separates it from the 510 version of same is the automatic battery. It works. This allows you to hold the MaxXFusion as you would a cigarette. There is something strangely attractive about that, and it's a feature that will appeal to a lot of new converts to vaping.
Ok now pay close attention. This is the thing that really, really surprised me about this device. It hits beautifully. The throat hit delivered by this unassuming looking cigarette replacement is very satisfying. I have been sitting here with my Bombshell, my Copper and Mrs. Doctor Vapenstein's eGo switching back and forth, and the fact of the matter is that the Bloog carto delivers a draw that is slightly hotter and harder than a standard 510 atty. The three standard 510 attys currently in use at Castle Vapenstein have been in service for around a month, and that may have something to do with it, the Bloog being brand new. That aside, the performance in terms of hot vapor and throat hit is much, much more impressive than I thought a cigarette-like device could deliver, and you would need a low resistance atomizer or higher voltage on a 510 to beat it. I know that sounds crazy, and I had to vape with all these devices all day long before I was comfortable keeping that assessment in this article, but it's true.
Vapor production using the Bloog Reds cartos is excellent. I would describe it as on par with what the 510 produces. Again, I just wasn't expecting this kind of performance from such a small unit.
The Reds cartos have that classic Chinese tobacco taste, which is to say they have satisfying throat hit and taste like peanut. I never liked this in the past, but I have strangely become quite drawn to the DK Tab flavor while testing this unit. There is something oddly compelling about it. It's like vaping nicotine fortified peanut butter. It made me go to The Juice Cellar and retrieve a bottle of BlueMist Vaping DK Tobacco Type I had in 24mg, and it's a dead ringer for what's in these cartos. I intend to get a 30ml bottle of this juice because I am now addicted to it after using it on the MaxXFusion.
I have already refilled one of the cartos using this juice, several times actually, and the operation was easy and painless. The carto performed like new each time when I was done. Using a dentist's pick or similar, remove the silicone end piece from the carto, and drip your juice down the side of the interior, watching as the fluid is absorbed by the wadding material. End piece back on, and it's like a fresh carto. Previously my only experience with cartomizers had been with the 510 ceramic variety, and I had written them off as garbage and stuck with my atomizers. The Bloog cartos work extremely well and are very easy to freshen up.
The Kamel cartos have a similar flavor profile, but with much less of the ever present peanut. Mrs. Doctor Vapenstein says the Kamel cartos are more analog-like, but I like the robust peanut-y punch of the Reds. I also have some blank cartos I am going to fill with some of my favorite juice.
In summation, the Bloog MaxXFusion is a rockin' ecig that takes all the pain out of nicotine delivery. I would not hesitate to recommend this device. It delivers a quality vape, and it has almost no learning curve associated with its use. The only real beef I have is that they don't offer a multi-battery charger. A serious smoker transitioning to vaping may want to own as many as four (or more) batteries, and it would be nice if there was a charger that would accommodate more than one battery at a time. That minor beef aside, I love this device. This is exactly the sort of thing that will get people vaping and keep them here. They can decide later how involved they want to get with the hobby, but the MaxXFusion won't scare anyone off with a steep learning curve or by having innumerable steps to operate. Personally, I like all the hands-on stuff, and I still love this device. Mrs. Doctor Vapenstein insists we buy more Bloog batteries, and if everyone else is to be happy I must see to her desires. Mine's going in my PV case alongside my Copper for away from the Castle usage.
The Bloog MaxXFusion electronic cigarette receives a resounding "huzzah!". Very nice product, and one that will be used frequently here at Castle Vapenstein.
***Updated 30Dec2010 20:59 ....or not. Everything I said about this unit stands, but with one major caveat. These auto batteries are susceptible to getting excess juice in them. If you accidentally overfill one of these cartos while it's attached to the battery, and you will sooner or later, no matter how careful you are, it kills the battery. This makes you mad, considering it's a $20 battery. I am not mad at Bloog, because this was user error, but it's still a drag and it severely dampens my enthusiasm for this product. I'm a dripper. I wasn't thinking about the possible effects of overfilling, and I killed a $20 battery in less than 48 hours.
So, I did love the MaxXFusion, but now it's a paper weight. Keep this in mind if you are thinking about one of these. If the person who will be using this is just going to vape prefilled cartos til they're dry and then dispose of them, this won't be an issue. If you're going to be topping your cartos off, you should always remove the carto from the battery before doing so, and you should drain any excess juice before reattaching the carto to the battery. This is a nice device, but the batteries are very easily rendered inert if you aren't careful.