My journey into vaping

The Eleaf iStick; a side by side comparison of the 20w and 30w


The other day I fell in love with vaping all over again. I put a Kanger Subtank on my new iStick 30w and blew clouds of moist flavoured air. I had this huge grin on my face as I watched the vapour dissipate. This was vaping nirvana – I hadn’t had to build it. I knew it was safe. And yet here I was puffing like a steam engine. One of my vaping friends came round for a visit and had a try on it. We were giggling together like girls over how much fun it is. NRT has never done that for me.

I’m late to the party with the Eleaf range. They became very popular at the end of last year while I was living under a Duvet. With some of my original fixed battery things starting to get a bit tired of holding a charge, it was time to think about replacements for both myself and for the best friend. I went for these two, and they won’t be my last purchases from Eleaf.

sidebysideThe 20W is a very neat little device, shown here to the right of its bigger brother the 30W. The coloured surface does not show finger prints and is tactile enough to prevent it slipping straight through my fingers, while being slippery enough to turn in the hand easily. The fire button does have a slight rattle to it although the build quality is really robust. This is Best Friend’s new toy and he says, “Someone has really thought about this design. It sits in the hand nicely and the fire button just sits under the finger. I can vape with either hand comfortably. I don’t knock the up/down buttons because of where they sit. I really like it. It is a good upgrade to my beloved MVP and I never thought I could be tempted away from them.” Prices are around £29-£34 and the units come in Black, silver, pink or blue.

The Subtank Nano (review coming later this week) that I have on this tank is running the 1.2 ohm OCC head. The 20w won’t fire under 1 ohm. It has a 2200 mAh battery giving it good battery life. BF is getting a good two days out of it at 10w at 1.2 ohm. It charges via a USB cable and it does pass-through so you can vape while charging.  Short circuit protection and 10 second cut-off is pretty much as standard. The unit is 510 threaded and ours had the ego adapter in the box. We both really like the display screens. The controls operate slightly differently between the two devices, but it’s pretty much standard. Five click on/off. Three clicks switch between wattage and voltage mode. The displays change when you take a puff to show all sorts of info that you’ll probably never need.


The puff duration counts up while you take a vape and then stays static for long enough to be looked at. Then it switches back to the standard screen which stays lit for about 15 seconds.


istickThe 30w has a slightly shaped top curve underneath the atomiser connection. The nano sits nicely on this, but the mini is absolutely perfect, there is no overhang of the atomiser and only about 0.5mm between the edge of the atomiser and the edge of the battery.

Smaller form factor tanks are just perfect for this as it is truly tiny. It too has a 2200mAh battery, the same 510 connector with an adapter for ego tanks but this little gem fires down to 0.4 ohm, making it perfect for the subtank mini whether you use the 0.5ohm OCC head or the RBA section. There is no rattle on my fire button and the addition of a lock feature to set the wattage/voltage by pressing both the up and down buttons at the same time is very welcome. I’ve had both the nano and mini on here and although I’ve now lost the nano to the Best Friend I love the iStick with both. I love the silky smooth coating that’s grippy enough to be positive. I adore the feel of the unit in the hand. It’s light, easy to hold and a joy to use. I love this combination so much I’ve been using it almost exclusively. At 20w I wasn’t getting a full day from it; at 15w I’m not battering it as hard and it is lasting better. This comes in the same colour range as the 20w and is priced between £32 and £40.

If you’re upgrading to your first VV/VW device, then get either of these two. More experienced users should be choosing between the 30w and the 50w. My next purchase will be a 50w. I’d suggest really considering the 30w as a minimum whether you intend to use a more advanced tank or not. It does give you a little bit of future proofing against the day when you try a subtank with the 0.5 OCC head in it, and fall in love with vaping all over again.


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Author: B

A Mad middle aged woman who lives in the middle of nowhere, Scotland with a parrot, two Jack Russells, some koi, and a tank full of tropical fish. I have M.E. but that's really not important. I draw, paint, write, game, garden, blog and enjoy a good vape. I have three lovely grown up offspring, and 2 ex-husbands.

3 thoughts on “The Eleaf iStick; a side by side comparison of the 20w and 30w

  1. Pingback: Eleaf iStick 50W – First Impressions | Fergus OnlineFergus Online

  2. Very informative, thanks very much Beki.

    Liked by 1 person

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