Hi Vapor Talk members, In this review i take a look at the Cold Steel 100 120W TC Box Mod from Ehpro. The Ehpro Cold Steel 100 120W TC Box Mod was supplied for the purpose of this review by Violette from Vapeciga.
Ehpro were known for manufacturing quality affordable clones but that seems in the distant past as more recently they have been manufacturing some well received products of their own, including many collaborations with reviewers. The Cold Steel 100 is one of two devices Ehpro have designed in collaboration with Youtube reviewers, the Cold steel 200 was in collaboration with Nebelfee (a German Youtube reviewer) and this the Cold Steel 100 with AmbitionZ Vaper (makes me wonder what really is the collaborators contribution to the project). The Cold Steel 100 has the full works of wattage, Voltage, Bypass, Curves and full TC suite. The main marketing of both Cold Steels is their high quality Stainless Steel build quality so let's give the Cold Steel 100 a look!
The Cold Steel 100 comes in cardboard box packaging with the device placed inside the included belt loop case. I received the Obsidian Black version, the other available versions are Grey Champagne and Old Gold. The form factor is odd looking and i do like it although not original has it looks very similar to a Zen mod from about 4 years ago or more recently the YiHi SL Class. The form factor is a tubular rear with a rectangular vertical protruding face section which houses the PCB, functional buttons, screen etc. The device looks front heavy as if it will topple over at any minute but the rear tubular section is Stainless Steel while the front section is the lighter Zinc Alloy metal so actually is very stable and even more so once the weight of a battery and atty is added. Brass is also listed in the materials so i am assuming the 510 and contacts are brass and maybe the inner threading for the battery cap.
The protruding face section has "AMBITIONZ VAPER" printed on the tapered roof (i just don't want a reviewers name printed on the device, thanks!). On the face's surface we have a squared light switch style fire button top followed by a narrow elongated screen, we then have a switch style rocker for navigation followed at the bottom by a micro USB port. The tubular rear section is featureless which i like apart from "COLD STEEL" being carved into the metal low down. Moving to the base which is the battery cap we have venting holes and printed safety stamps. Up top we have the 510 plate with inner and outer rim, the 510 i believe is Brass and is spring loaded.
Like with the Cold Steel 200 the Cold Steel 100 boasts very good build quality but also for a single battery device is on the heavy side, ergonomically it is sound using to either finger or thumb fire the device.
Dimensions: 39 x 27.5 x 91.5mm
Material: Stainless Steel + Brass + Zinc Alloy
Coil Resistance Range: 0.05-3.0ohm
Voltage Range: 0.5-8V
Wattage Range: 5-120W
Output Current: 35A
Temperature Range: 100-315℃ / 200-600℉
Micro-USB Charging: Yes
Online Software Update: Yes
Work Mode: PWR/ TEMP / CURVE / VOLT / BYPASS
Battery Type: 1x 18650/20700/21700(not included)
TC MOD Co-designed with AmbitionZ VapeR
120W Max Output Powered by Single 21700/20700/18650 Battery
Fully metal construction and ultra ergonomic design
Multiple working modes for different style vapers
0.0018S firing speed
Micro-USB port for charging and upgrade
Exquisite design & easy operated buttons
Colours: Grey Champagne, Black Obsidian, Old Gold
The Cold Steel will accommodate a single 21700 or 20700 and also a single 18650 when using the supplied adaptor. We have a screw off battery cap on the base of the device which undoes very smoothly but when screwing back in place is slightly crunchy. The inside of the tube has a reflective surface allowing for the marked orientation at the bottom of the tube to be very visible, also orientation on the underneath of the battery cap is Black on White making it stand out, cracking job!
The Screen is very narrow but elongated and old school in nature which many still prefer. The Display and fonts might be quite small but i had no problems reading all the information as it's sharp and bright. Top left we have the preheat in Power mode or wire type in TC mode, bottom left we have the battery status indication bar. To the right of what has already been described we have resistance top and the voltage when in Power mode underneath, when in TC, Voltage or Bypass modes instead of voltage this is where we will find the wattage. The right of the screen displays wattage in Power mode, temperature in TC mode or voltage when in Voltage or Bypass modes.
The device is the usual 5 clicks of the fire button to turn on and 5 clicks to turn off and once on we are met by the already described sharp, bright, old school style screen. We do have some combination key press functions which are - and fire together flips the screen, + and fire locks the navigational buttons but the device will still fire, + and - together locks the entire device so it also will not fire and finally pressing +, - and fire together is stealth mode.
The device has many modes but a very simple menu system which is 3 clicks of the fire button to enter. The menu gives us the options of Power, Temp, Curve, Bypass, Voltage and Back, when selecting Power it then gives us the options of preheat which are Normal, Soft or Strong. The Curves, Voltage and Bypass are all straightforward but selecting Temp gives us the options of Nickel, Stainless Steel, Titanium, TC and Back. Once we have selected wire material in TC it then allows wattage to be set in 1W increments right up to the maximum 120W. Once wattage is set it then moves to where we set the temperature which adjusts in 5 degree increments and round robins between Celsius and Fahrenheit. That's it!, Very simple and i do like that all screens have a back option and throughout including setting wattage and temperature everything round robins. When adjusting the wattage it adjusts in .1W increments up to 30W and then .5W increments all the way up to 120W, it also scrolls at a really nice speed!
First i have to state i did not use the device in temp control and don't have access to data so simply reviewed the device as i personally experienced it. Like the Cold Steel 200 this device fires incredibly quickly and has very impressive ramp up which is great but it makes me think it would of benefited having a select button because every time the fire button is pressed to enter the menu system etc it fire's without fail.
I used the device at various wattage's up to 80W and as far as i can tell it's pretty accurate and if anything slightly overpowered reminding me very much of the Minikin for the instant hit i got, all modes i tested which was all of them apart from TC worked great. I also did try the device with both a 18650 and 21700 at wattage's between 80 and 120w and while it fared much better with a 21700 it really didn't feel it was doing much above 100W, maybe with a fresh 21700 but not during normal use and as for with a 18650 80W is all this feels like it's giving out.
I really feel single battery device's that are 100W or 100W+ that will accommodate a 21700, 20700 or a 18650 battery should ask you which battery you are using and if you pick the 18650/20700 option it should switch to a 80W device. Instead the Cold Steel 100 at lower and mid wattage's as i said seems slightly overpowered while when going to higher wattage's we have a situation where especially with an 18650 battery it's severely underpowered!
I love the squared light switch style fire button and switch style navigational rocker, also a big pro for the build quality and even if not an original design both aesthetically (in my opinion) and ergonomically the device is spot on.
The menu is very simple, every screen has a back option and everything round robins which makes it a very user friendly device, also the .5 increment adjustment and scroll speed gets pro's all round.
Like the Cold Steel 200 every time the battery is swapped or the battery cap is just unscrewed then screwed back the device resets to 35W and has no memory of what you were vaping at but unlike the Cold Steel 200 it doesn't smartly (always in my case wrongly) set wattage it believes you should be vaping at with the resistance of the coil which i am pleased about.
As ever i would never recommend charging batteries in the device unless it's your only option but the device supports 2A charging (1.8A to be precise) and is fully firmware upgradeable, but unlike the Cold Steel 200 it doesn't have a type C USB port which is disappointing. The Cold Steel 100 will accommodate up to a 25mm atty without overhang which is the vast majority of atty's that would suit a single battery device.
Finally the belt loop case you receive is rather nice but unfortunately they forgot to take into consideration the extra height when an atty is attached so isn't fit for purpose!
Excellent build quality
Stainless Steel & Zinc Alloy construction
Aesthetically classy looking device (even if not original design)
Very Ergonomic device
Portable even if slightly heavy
Accommodates 21700, 20700 or 18650 (with supplied adaptor)
Squared Light switch style fire button
Switch style navigational rocker
Sharp, bright old school style screen
Lock just navigational rocker or entire device
Very user friendly menu system
Adjustment increments spot on also back options and everything round robins
Curves, Voltage and Bypass work as they should
TC (not tested)
Performed great in power mode
Fires instantly with impressive ramp up
Very clearly marked battery orientation
Supports 1.8A charging
Belt loop case included
Heavy for single battery device (subjective to individual)
Auto sets to 35W after removing battery (no memory of previous wattage)
Severely underpowered unless using 21700 (Fine up to 80W)
Does not reduce max wattage when using 18650 or 20700 battery
Does not have type C USB
Belt loop case not fit for purpose when atty attached
I would once again like to thank Violette from Vapeciga for supplying the Ehpro Cold Steel 100 120W TC Box MOD for the purpose of this review.