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That’s the mantra of the vaping industry. More is better. We want more vapor, we want more options, we want more convenience, we want more quality, we want more, period. And thus, we have the SMOKTech TFV8, also known as the Cloud Beast.
Smoktech started selling vaping equipment early in this game, pioneering a few different technologies, and developing a reputation as a price leader up through 2015. Their tank technology kept up with the Jones’ until then, but the introduction of the TFV4 raised the bar with a host of coil options, including the thirsty T8 octo-coil. Even now, the TFV4 holds its own among the competition, a serious contender for the best tank on the market if you’re looking for options and vapor production. So the TFV8 was never meant to bring Smok’s tank selection up to par. It was meant to push the company from first place contender to serious domination.
With a tank called the Cloud Beast, you know subtlety is not the key here. The box shows a volcano overflowing with lava, all black and orange. You open this box, and the only word that comes to mind is simply “big”. Coil options are generous, quad and quad-parallel octo configurations along with an RBA included, a sextuple available for purchase, and everything about them looks like an amped up version of everything else on the market. The wire inside the coils seems to be 24 on the V4 and 22 gauge on the V8. Case diameter of the coils have grown, and so have the ports, which are now slanted on the V4 to emphasize the “V” look.
Gigantism continues elsewhere. Airflow slots are bigger. The vented drip tip has been replaced with a large bore chuff you could suck a housecat through. The hinged top-fill design from the TFV4 remains, along with all its pros and cons: since the top doesn’t detach, you can’t lose it, but the design is inherently less secure than the screw-off design of Uwell’s Crown. The only thing included with this tank that’s smaller than the previous incarnation is the included mod rings, which seems like a strange choice until you remember that some TFV4 users found the lid for the top fill swinging open without permission. The new smaller mod rings are easier to move up and down, so when you finish filling up, just move them to cover the opening and you no longer have to worry about juice spilling from an accidentally opened tank. Smart.
Let’s take it for a test drive, shall we?
Any red-blooded American starts with the V8 octo-coil, which tells you in clear laser etching that, while it’s best between 120 and 180 watts, it will take 260 watts if you challenge it. This coil produces incredibly thick clouds at 150 watts with no hint of burning or gargling. Flavor at this setting may surprise you: it’s not a Russian 91% and you may miss some of the subtleties you would get with a Cleito, but it competes well with any variation of the Crown or Arctic. Go over 200, and you get more vapor along with more heat and less taste, and take it all the way to 260 and you may get some burn with very little increase in cloud, but dial it back to the recommended settings and you’re in flavor country again. We’re talking cloud comp levels of vapor production, from a tank with an over-the-counter pre-built coil. On this setup alone, the Cloud Beast name is justified. You don’t measure clouds like this with a tape. You measure them with Doppler radar.
You may still want to run the V4 quad coil as your daily driver, which produces vapor on par with the biggest coils other tanks come with, and with a different, smoother flavor. Your preference may vary, but what is indisputable is that, if you run the V8 regularly, you will have to start buying juice by the gallon. You’ve heard the expression in muscle car circles that “it’ll pass anything but a gas station” right? This is the vaping equivalent. If you chain-vape, don’t be surprised to go through all 5.5mls of juice in half an hour.
The RBA makes for a wonderful surprise. It comes with a set of staple Clapton coils built in, and unlike many rebuildable decks on other tanks, the porting is well thought out and doesn’t require an absolutely perfect amount of cotton. A decent wick job will get you regular, burn-free vaping. Flavor and cloud are similar to the Griffin 25, making the SMOKTech TFV8 competitive as both a swap-coiled tank and an RTA.
Nowhere did we find any production quality issues, the gaskets held tight, and seepage from the airflow holes was minimal.So what we have here is a great combination of convenience and cloud production. Combined with any given 200 or 300 watt regulated mod, and you can puff like a 19th century locomotive with minimal hassle. It’s always dangerous to say this, but given the FDA timelines and the laws of physics, and we would not be surprised to see this tank go down in history as “peak vapor”, the most powerful tank of its generation. We may not see anything this extreme again for a long time. Hopefully, we’re wrong.