Vandy Vape were one of the first manufacturers to tap into the reviewer collaboration craze that now dominates enthusiast vaping.
The Vandy Vape Requiem RDA is their latest co-designed release, created in partnership with Youtuber El Mono Vapeador, who is one of the most influential voices in the Spanish speaking vape community.
Is it worth checking out?
Let’s take a look at the specs:
Dimensions: 15mm*22mm (height excluding drip tip)
Materials: Stainless steel, Ultem
Deck style: Single coil
Price: £25-30 (available here)
Construction, fit and finish of the Requiem RDA is a mixed bag. Much of this device is nicely put together, with precise tolerances on all three top caps and nice machining throughout. There are some stumbling blocks, though.
For starters, one of my post screws was nigh on impossible to remove out of the box. This was solved by storing the deck in the freezer for an hour, but that’s not something which should need to be done with a brand-new product.
Secondly, I found that the 510 pin was quite tricky to swap out for the included squonk pin. This is caused by a two-piece 510 pin design, which requires quite a specific size of flat head screwdriver to remove. An appropriately sized tool for this job is not included with the RDA.
The post screw issue I experienced may not be widespread, but it has to be reported for the sake of any prospective buyer.
The landmark feature of the Requiem RDA is its airflow design and this is genuinely commendable. The device is supplied with three airflow caps out of the box, which provide hugely different experiences.
The first is an MTL cap, with dual 1mm inlets. With its appropriately narrow drip tip, this produces a satisfying moderate MTL draw. The second is an RDL cap, with dual inlets on each side. This provides a true restricted DL experience, with a fantastically smooth, quiet draw. The final cap is wide open, providing far more air, with a large inlet on either side.
All three caps slot easily into the barrel section of the RDA, allowing you to swap styles on the fly, so long as the build inside the atomiser is up to the job. I really like this concept and it’s been executed well.
The build deck itself is a simple affair. Initial problems notwithstanding, installing a build is user friendly. Simply raise the large flathead screws, place leads under, secure and clip short. I was able to install builds ranging from 26g round wire, up to tri-core Fused Claptons without issue.
Due to the nature of the channelled airflow design, it’s best to exercise some caution with the inner diameter of your builds. I found 2.5mm to be the sweet spot, which is to be expected in such a petite 22mm RDA.
Wicking the Requiem RDA should be self-explanatory. There is very limited room on the deck, so I recommend cutting wicks short and placing them into the wells gently. Over-stuffing these small wells could impact capillary action, so this is a case where less is more.
Due to the versatility of the Requiem RDA’s airflow design, there’s plenty of tinkering to be done when it comes to builds. For the MTL airflow cap, I found my standard 2.5mm 7-wrap 26g kanthal build to work best. At 15W-16W, this results in excellent flavour and warmth, with a smooth MTL draw.
The RDL cap worked best with a 2.5mm 5-wrap 26g Fused Clapton. At 30W-35W, this build results in exceptional flavour production, with a near silent, super smooth draw. For me, this cap and build is where the Requiem truly stands head and shoulders above other affordable single coil RDAs.
The DL cap is a big jump in airflow and in my mind, this is best approached with a larger coil. In my testing, I found that a 2.5mm 5-wrap 28g tri-core Fused Clapton was a good fit. At 40W-50W, this results in good flavour and plenty of vapour, though it also produces slightly more noise than the RDL cap, which is not too surprising.
Dripping Vs. Squonking
When it comes to the subject of dripping vs. squonking, the answer is clear cut. The Requiem RDA has a tiny well and the top cap sits rather snug. There’s no doubt in my mind that this device was designed with squonking in mind and in this setting, it excels.
The sloped design of the airflow system makes the Requiem highly resistant to leaking when used as a squonking atomiser, despite its short stature. In addition to this, slopes on the deck allow excess e-liquid to easily return to the squonk bottle after squeezing, which results in a saturated vape every time, without spitback.
In summary, the Vandy Vape Requiem RDA is an interesting prospect. On one hand, it’s hugely versatile, easy to build and produces outstanding flavour. On the other, I had some issues with the way it was put together.
If you’re not concerned about these gripes, I think this is one of the best affordable RDAs on the market today. If you want a guaranteed frustration-free experience, though, it may be prudent to look elsewhere. Take a look at our favourite single coil RDAs.
- Three airflow caps included
- True MTL, RDL and DL
- Excellent flavour production
- Great for squonking
- Problems with post screw out of the box
- No tool provided for swapping 510 pin