The features and functions on any vaping device will vary from model to model. Wattage/power mode is fairly self explanatory and simple to use and understand. We've talked about temperature control recently, so we won't be covering those functions again, but there's a lot of extra options in some mods.
This is a simple explanation of some of the more common modes and features you might find hidden away in the menu on a typical 'advanced' mod vaping device.
Power Curve or Custom Curve
The Power Curve feature on an e-cigarette allows you to to create a power curve for the wattage rather than just vaping at a set power. For example rather than having the e-cigarette device fire at 20w continuously, you can have a custom power curve that starts at 25w and descends to 15w.
I don't know a lot of people that actually use this feature regularly but it can be useful in certain circumstances. You can use it to simulate temperature control by limiting the power after the first couple of seconds, or use it as a pre-heat to get a large coil glowing quickly. The power adjustment is usually made in seconds (and sometimes half seconds) for each second across the draw time limit of the mod, which is usually 10 seconds.
Bypass mode on an e-cigarette will bypass the variable power circuit and supply the voltage in the battery direct to the coil in the tank or atomiser. So a fully charged charged battery or mod with a built in battery will supply 4.2v which will drop to around 3.2v before the battery cut off limit. The actual wattage applied will depend on the resistance of the coil and that can be worked out easily using an online Ohms Law calculator.
As an example in bypass mode a 1ohm coil will give you 17.64 watts on a full charge dropping, to 10.24 watts at 3.2v. This mode is designed to work as if it's a mechanical mod but still offering the protections of a regulated mod.
Custom or Memory Modes
These are presets for groups of settings that can be easily switched from one to another. On some devices they will only be temperature control modes, allowing you to switch between different wires and temperatures quickly. On others they will allow you to save power curves and wattages etc. to use with different tanks. The settings that you can save into these custom memory locations can vary quite a lot from one device to another so it's worth pulling that manual out and seeing exactly what you are able to save in these modes.
Variable Voltage Mode
Very similar to variable wattage but adjustment is shown as voltage. There was a time when all adjustable mods displayed the voltage. These days it's usually just shown as 'voltage applied' under wattage. If your mod has this option then you can choose to vary the voltage to get the power you like. It works the same as variable wattage, turn it up to put more power into the coil or down for less.
This will turn off the display but allow the device to continue to be used. This might be handy if you are in a dark room or don't want the distraction of the display reflecting in a window or something like that. Always make sure you know how to get it out of 'stealth mode' because you won't be able to look through the menu to turn the screen back on! It's usually a combination of button presses, holding both up and down buttons for a few seconds, for example.
These modes will allow you to lock various buttons on your e-cigarette. Either the 'up' and 'down' buttons only to stop accidental changing of the power while vaping. Or to lock all the buttons on the device for carrying in a pocket or bag without fully turning it off. Lock modes are handy, if you always vape at the same wattage then it's a really good idea to lock the adjustment buttons to stop you accidentally changing 15w to 50w and burning your coil out instantly. I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one who's done that before!
Pre-heat or Boost Modes
There are a few different ways these modes are implemented, on some e-cigs there's the option for 'soft, normal and hard' and on others you can adjust the pre-heat more precisely, it's usually used to get a larger coil up to temperature quickly, for example if you usually vape at 30w, you might set a 1 second pre-heat of 40w that will then drop down to the 30w the mod is set at. On other mods pre-heat only applies to temperature control mode, it's another feature that you'll have to check the manual for, to see what the specific use is for you mod.
Some advanced e-cigarettes and mods will have the ability to update the operating programming in the chip, this is usually done by connecting the device to a PC via the USB cable and downloading the update to the mod. These firmware updates can be used by the manufacturer to improve how the device works, add new features and options. The ability to make improvements after the mod has been released is a good option to have and often the manufacturer will make changes based on customer feedback. If your device doesn't have the ability to lock the control buttons or the screen isn't bright enough, drop the manufacturer an email or message them on social media. It could be something they can change with a firmware update.
I hope this helps you navigate and understand some of the features you might not be familiar with on your advanced mod. Unfortunately I can't cover every option and mode on every available device on the market but if there's anything I've not covered that you are struggling with, then feel free to drop a comment