Intensive Test: Cloupor Mini
The Cloupor Mini has had several reports about a "meltdown" issue. Cloupor's response has been to minimize the issue, claiming that the meltdown affected less than 0.2% of devices in the marketplace (as of mid January 2015). Devices after their response were claimed to be safe from the meltdown issue. Their response is here.
I like the Cloupor Mini and was disturbed to hear about the meltdown issue. I have two of these devices. The first, a gray unit, is reviewed here – and not recommended. Based on these latest intensive tests spanning a three week period of daily use, we find nothing of any consequence with the Cloupor Mini – we leave the decision up to you – it does seem that Cloupor's response is valid.
I also have several other Cloupor devices (T6, T8, ZNA 50). Although I find the Cloupor devices to be well engineered overall, most have flaws – particularly in the accuracy of their electronics. The T8 and T6, for example, do not reach their upper limits in claimed wattage range. Despite this, I am fairly satisfied with the build quality, and how well these fit in the hand and work.
I decided to get a brand new unit that was shipped after the Cloupor response to the meltdown issue. Presumably this device is made after the company knew about the meltdown and is in the batches where the fixes are in place.
At the same time, Canvape provided me with two Battery Charging Safety Bags made by Efest.
Efest have several different sizes of these bags. I have one of each of the two sizes. A smaller unit (shown at the top) and a larger unit (shown at the bottom). The small bag is approximately 22cm x 18cm (8.5 x 7 in.) and the large bag is approximately 29cm x 23cm (11 x 9 in.).
Efest calls these "Lipo Guard" bags, presumably they are designed for lithium ion polymer batteries. My intent is to use the smaller bag when recharging the Cloupor Mini. I plan on inserting the Cloupor Mini in the bag while I use the built-in USB micro port.
I also plan on using the pass-through functionality and charge while I vape. This is one of the main triggers for the meltdown – although it is reported that the unit has meltdown issues even when idle.
The first unit I reviewed is the gray one. I have a link to that review at the top of this article.
The second unit I am using for the intense review is the black unit. The tests have already started (02 March 2015) and I am using it as I write this first portion of the review article. It's been about twelve hours of using this – and without incident. For my tests I plan on using the same battery consistently: a new purple Efest 3100 mAh 20A battery. I will also use everything supplied in the Cloupor box to make sure nothing gets introduced into the tests that is not directly connected to the Cloupor Mini (other than the battery, which Cloupor does not supply).
The first thing I noticed with the new black unit is that the build quality is not as good as the first one I reviewed. The back cover is a sloppy fit and the inner cavity where the battery sits shows scratches and has an "unfinished" look with a poor inner finish. The battery I am using seems to be much tighter. It is a flat top, but seems quite a bit more difficult to insert than the first unit I tested. However, this "intense" test isn't about fit and finish, it's about the device functionality and so far, that's immaculate.
Follow along, I'll be updating this page over the next few days and weeks.
Update 04 March 2015 - this is now the third full day of using the Cloupor Mini. I've recharged it twice using the Efest Battery Charging Safety Bag and today I have tested it in pass-through mode. No issues whatsoever. I have also carried out the Cloupor Mini test several times, pressing the fire button for at least 15 seconds while vaping – again no issues, no negative messages on the Cloupor Mini. And note: the Cloupor Mini stops firing when you reach 15.0 seconds ...
Update 21 March 2015 - I've been using the Cloupor MIni consistently for about three weeks now. I am confident there is no problem with the current batch of Cloupor Mini's. I have even acquired a black silicone skin for the black one and brought the silver unit out of retirement and have a gray silicone skin for that as well. Between the two Cloupor Minis, I have more than one day of vaping – however, I am continuing to test both regular charging (in the "safe bag") as well as pass-through charging. Neither of the two Cloupor Minis even warm to the touch, none has mis-fired, and the only issue I run into occasionally is that the 510 connector pin needs manual adjustment to achieve connection. The Cloupor Mini is not a floating or spring 510 connector pin. At this point, the only criticism that I would have is related to the 510 connector pin: Cloupor, either make this a spring loaded or floating pin – or reverse thread it so that it does not thread downwards when an atomizer is threaded into place. You can click on the image at the left to view the full size version of both Cloupor Mini's with silicone skins.