SMOK Nord 4 Review

The Nord and Novo series by SMOK have been some of the most popular pod mods on the market ever since they were first introduced, and there are several good reasons for that. They look great, they’re affordable and they’re backed by the marketing muscle of the vape industry’s biggest manufacturer.

The Nord and Novo also occupy two very important positions on the spectrum of pod vapes. They look similar to one another and offer much higher performance than a typical small pod system. The Nord series, though, is a bit more advanced than the Novo series and tends to offer features like replaceable coils, adjustable wattage and so on. So, if you’re an advanced vaper looking for a cloud machine that fits in your pocket, you’re definitely in the right place if you’re looking at a SMOK Nord.

The only problem with buying a Nord pod vape is that there are so many different choices. From the original SMOK Nord to the new Nord 5, most of the devices in the Nord series are still in production and are still completely viable everyday vapes. So, how do you pick the right one for your needs? Is it just a matter of choosing the one with the biggest number at the end?

Although you certainly wouldn’t be wrong by heading straight for the Nord 5, we’re going to make the case in this review that the SMOK Nord 4 is an equally viable vape – and buying it can help you save some money in the long run since the coils are so affordable.

What Are the Features That Make the SMOK Nord 4 Special?

Let’s start by discussing the features that make the Nord 4 stand out in the world of pod systems. After detailing the things that make the Nord 4 special, we’ll go into a bit more detail by discussing how the Nord 4 compares to the previous and next generations in the Nord series.

  • The Nord 4 has a maximum power of 80 watts, making it a true vape mod in a tiny and pocketable package. Once you’ve tried a device like this one, you’ll never want to go back to a clunky box mod again.
  • It has a built-in battery with a capacity of 2,000 mAh, which is more battery life than you’ll get with many box mods.
  • It works with both SMOK RPM coils and SMOK RPM2 coils, giving you a huge variety of different coils to try – more than many traditional vape tanks. The common wisdom that pod systems limit your flexibility because they’re proprietary definitely doesn’t apply here.
  • It has a built-in airflow control ring and can adapt itself for both the mouth-to-lung and restricted direct-to-lung vaping styles.
  • It charges at a rate of 1.4 amps through the USB-C port, so you won’t find yourself waiting too long when the battery dies.

How Does the SMOK Nord 4 Compare to the Nord X and Nord 5?

Knowing the capabilities of the Nord 4 is certainly useful, but the various numbers and specifications of a single device don’t mean a great deal unless you have a point of comparison. That’s what we’ll do here; here’s how the Nord 4 compares to the previous and next devices in the Nord series.

Nord X vs. Nord 4

  • The Nord 4 has a higher-capacity battery than the Nord X (2,000 vs. 1,500 mAh).
  • The Nord 4 has a higher power range than the Nord X (80 vs. 60 watts).
  • The Nord 4 has adjustable airflow, and the Nord X doesn’t.
  • The Nord X has a built-in dust cover for the charging port. The Nord 4 lacks this feature.
  • The Nord X also carries the IP67 ingress protection rating for dust impermeability and water resistance. The Nord 4 lacks this feature.
  • The Nord 4 and Nord X both work with SMOK RPM and RPM2 coils.

Should you buy the Nord 4 if you’re currently using the Nord X?

If you’re currently using the Nord X, you should consider upgrading to the Nord 4 if you’re unhappy about your current device’s vapor production. The airflow control ring is one of the most important features of the Nord 4. Between that and the wider power range, you’ll definitely get bigger clouds with the Nord 4. If you’re already happy with your device’s flavor and cloud production, though, there’s no reason to upgrade – especially since the Nord X has a bit of extra water and dust protection that the Nord 4 lacks.

Nord 4 vs. Nord 5

  • The Nord 5 has an airflow control tab instead of an airflow dial, giving you a wider range of airflow possibilities. The Nord 5 also has dual airflow slots, allowing for even bigger cloud production compared to the Nord 4.
  • The Nord 5 pod has a new design with a wide-bore mouthpiece to take advantage of the increased airflow.
  • All versions of the Nord 5 feature a locking coil for added child resistance. The Nord 4 only has that feature in regions that legally require it.
  • The Nord 5 works with SMOK RPM3 coils The Nord 4 doesn’t work with RPM3 coils, but it does work with RPM and RPM2 coils, giving you more options overall.
  • The Nord 5 has a slightly higher pod capacity of 5 ml compared to the 4.5 ml capacity of the Nord 4 pod.
  • The Nord 5 and Nord 4 have the same battery life and power range of 2,000 mAh and 80 watts respectively.
  • The leather series of the Nord 5 has a slightly faster charging rate of 1.5 amps, compared to the 1.4 amp charging rate of the Nord 4. The standard Nord 5 devices, however, have a slower charging rate of 1.2 amps.

Is the Nord 5 better than the Nord 4?

If you’re looking for the pod system that gives you the biggest clouds, the Nord 5 is objectively better than the Nord 4. Between the new RPM3 mesh coils and the much larger airflow vents, you will definitely get bigger clouds with the Nord 5 than with the Nord 4.

On the other hand, the fact that the Nord 4 has smaller airflow vents means that it delivers a better mouth-to-lung vaping experience. If you prefer the MTL vaping style, you will probably be happier with the Nord 4.

The fact that the Nord 4 works with both SMOK RPM and RPM2 coils also means that it provides a greater variety of vaping experiences. At the time of writing, there are seven different RPM coils and five different RPM2 coils, giving you 12 coil options in all with the Nord 4 compared to just two options with the Nord 5. Of course, the variety stops mattering once you’ve identified your favorite coil, but the Nord 4 definitely gives you a greater range of possibilities.

The final thing to consider is that the Nord 4 may have lower long-term costs because the coils are less expensive. Here’s what SMOK RPM, RPM2 and RPM3 coils cost per box at the time of writing.

What about the Nord 3?

You’re probably wondering why we haven’t discussed the SMOK Nord 3. The answer is that the Nord 3 doesn’t exist. The Nord X was the third device in the Nord series. It’s unclear why SMOK didn’t just name the device the Nord 3 – but if you’ve been vaping for a while, you know that SMOK’s naming conventions can be a little unusual sometimes.

The Bottom Line: Should You Buy the SMOK Nord 4?

The bottom line is that if you’re in the market for a pod mod that’s compact but offers impressive power, you’re going to be choosing between the SMOK Nord 4 and Nord 5. We’ve already gone into great detail about these two devices and their use cases, but it ultimately comes down to how you want to inhale and how much you’re willing to spend on coils.

  • If you prefer the mouth-to-lung inhaling style and plan to use your device with high-strength nicotine salt vape juice, you’re probably going to be happier with the Nord 4 than you would be with the Nord 5.
  • If you prefer the direct-to-lung inhaling style and want the best pod mod for clouds regardless of the long-term costs, you'll want to buy the Nord 5 because you’ll definitely get bigger cloud production with it. The only drawback is that you’ll probably spend more for replacement coils in the long run.
  • If you prefer the direct-to-lung inhaling style but want to keep your long-term costs as reasonable as they can be, you might have a better experience with the Nord 4 since the coils are less expensive. If you prefer freebase e-liquids but need a vape juice that supplies a bit more nicotine, try the Naked 100 brand. Unlike most other brands, Naked 100 offers freebase vape juice in strengths of 9 and 12 mg/ml. Those strengths are ideal for pod mods like the Nord 4.