South Beach Smoke are another relatively new electronic cigarette company, as far as I can tell they have been around since the start of 2010, but in this short space of time they have managed to create a really good range of products. There has been a lot of talk surrounding their electronic cigarettes so I took the plunge and ordered up their “Deluxe Starter Kit” to see what everyone is talking about. I’ve been looking to try out another batch of E cigarettes to see how things have changed over the last 6 months to a year, this is another one of these purchases.
Packaging has become quite a important factor for many people these days, so companies now really need to put a good amount of effort into the design of their packing. South Beach don’t fall short at this important first hurdle. The outside of the packaging looks great and on the inside everything is packed well and securely. In the Deluxe Starter Kit you get less than the name would suggest – 2 batteries, 5 cartridges and a wall charger – but the Deluxe name is given to separate the 2 piece South Beach E cigarette from their 3 piece “Premium” E cigarette. It doesn’t signify a higher level of kit, though as any existing E cigarette user will know, a 2 piece E cigarette is superior to a 3 piece one. If you want a more comprehensive kit you need to go for the “Deluxe Plus Starter Kit”.
The Deluxe kit will set you back $100, which does seem like a lot of money for what you get but there is the option of joining the “South Beach Smoke Home Delivery Program” which will get you your starter kit for only $50. What is the “South Beach Smoke Home Delivery Program” I hear you ask. Well basically it is a monthly subscription service where you get a specific number of refill cartridges delivered to your home every month for a reduced price. Not only do you get 50% off of the starter kit, but you get 30% off of the refills as well. The only problem with this is that you don’t like the South Beach E Cigarette once you receive it, but I honestly doubt this will be an issue as it is a really good device, as you will find out in this write-up.
There are two different batteries that you can use, the standard 2.5 inch and the high capacity 3.25 battery. Both of these come in the regular starter kit. The smaller battery is really quite light and ideal for holding between your fingers. The larger battery is a little bit too heavy for holding between your index and middle finger, but it does offer almost twice as much smoking time as the smaller battery, so if you are going to be out the house all day then the larger battery is what you should be using so that you don’t get caught without a charge. Since there is no portable charging case, or small USB charger with the Deluxe Starter Kit then this extra smoking time is really welcomed, and needed.
In my kit I opted for tobacco flavored refills, in hindsight I should really have bought the assorted mix to give all the flavors a try, but I didn’t. We live and learn. Anyway, the tobacco flavor is actually very good, I have really been enjoying using it. It is actually quite a mild flavor but still full of taste, kind of similar to the Red refills that V2 Cigs offer. The other flavors that are on offer are very much the standard flavors that many other companies offer – menthol, vanilla, chocolate and cherry. I’ll hopefully get some of these to try soon and update this review with how they perform.
Vapor production is in fact very good with the South Beach Smoke, as with most electronic cigarettes that use an automatic battery you do need to take a small primer puff to get the atomizer working to its best, but I found that you only really need to do this with the first of your drags, then each drag after that you can just puff like you are using a regular cigarette, so you need to exert less effort to get the best from it. The levels of vapor that I exhaled were very good, their isn’t as much vapor as I get from my V2 cig or Green Smoke but it is still very good, on par with the Safe Cig I would say.
When it comes time to buy more refills for your South Beach Smoke you have got a few options available to you. As I mentioned at the start you can take advantage of their home delivery program, which will mean you have cartridges delivered to your front door each month, automatically, giving you peace of mind and also saving you 30% off of the price, meaning a single cartridge costs about $3.50 (equivalent to $2.30 for a single pack of cigarettes). But if you don’t want to join the program and you just want to buy more when ever you need them then you will have to pay more for them, $5 per cartridge, unless you buy in bulk (60 carts at a time) which gets the price down to $3.75 per cartridge.
South Beach only sell their cartridges in packs of 15 cartridges, so the price for refills can actually look quite high if you only glance at them, but don’t let that put you off, when you work it all out in terms of cost per cartridge, or the equivalent cost of buying tobacco cigarettes, they are very reasonable.
If you join the cartridge Home Delivery Program you can get the “Deluxe Starter Kit” for the very cheap price of $49.99, but if you would rather not join up you will have to pay $99.99 for your starter kit, for what you get this is really quite expensive, even more so when you consider the equivalent starter kits from V2 Cigs and Safe Cigs cost $89.95 and you get more in those starter kits. So the price needs to come down a little.
I also wouldn’t mind seeing another tobacco flavor being offered. One variety of tobacco isn’t going to suit everyone, while I quite like it, I know that a lot of other people will find that it isn’t to their tastes. The throat hit when I took a drag wasn’t all that noticeable so a little more throat hit would be great. And as with most electronic cigarettes more vapor would be great too, just to make the experience a little closer to smoking tobacco.
Other than those relatively minor improvements that I think are needed I think that the South Beach Smoke Deluxe Kit is actually a really good buy. Because there are so many E cigarettes to choose from these days it is really hard to pick which one to go for. I think the biggest selling point with the South Beach is its monthly cartridge delivery program. If you don’t want to have to think about buying refill cartridges all the time then this program is ideal for you, and if you get to a stage where you no longer want to be part of the delivery program you can cancel the subscription, there is no minimum period that you have to stick to. So don’t worry about that.
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