Jun 082012
 

Lelo Tiani 2: Design Edition

Lelo is a company that changes their sex toys based on consumer feedback. Many have been changed. The Ina‘s clitoral arm was made less pinchy. The Mia was made more powerful and rumbly. So this review is a comparison review of the original Tiani vs the Tiani 2. If you’ve never read my opinions on the original Tiani, you might want to jump over to that review. Likewise if you’ve never heard much about SenseMotion or the Tiani before, you should start with my original review. This review will not be detailing the minute details and basics of how it works, packaging, etc. That’s all been done.

As I said, based on feedback from customers and reviewers, Lelo made changes to their SenseMotion line. All items in the SenseMotion line and just about every aspect of them has been revised – from the remote to the vibrations. But the real question is – do these updates and revamps make the Tiani 2 worth purchasing? As told by Lelo, the changes made to the Tiani are:

  1. Enhanced Motor: Quieter, and 50% more power than the original line
  2. Intelligent Memory Chip: No interruption of vibration if the remote and vibrator lose connection
  3. 3X Greater Wireless Range: Signal travels up to 48 feet with less interferrance from other wireless devices
  4. Enjoy with or without a Remote: Power on the vibrator and cycle through 6 modes without the remote
  5. Two Wearable Attachment Options: Classic looks the same as before; Contoured has a fuller flare for g-spot stimulation and a concave arm design

Lelo Tiani 2’s Enhanced Motor

From what I can see, the Tiani 2 itself is not any quieter, but it didn’t really need to be. What is quieter is the remote. It’s a noticeable difference, and a good change. The 50% power increase is not only correct, it’s selling itself short. Frankly I’d say that the Tiani 2 is three times more powerful than my original Tiani. The original was so surface-buzzy and weak that I could barely even feel the so-called vibrations. The Tiani 2 is an improvement with more rumbly vibrations that are more powerful. They feel pretty identical to the updated Mia. However…..while the vibrations are improved in both intensity and type, it’s still not powerful enough to me. When you make a vibrator with variable speeds, it stands to reason that you should make the top speed a little more powerful than what half of the women would prefer – this will appeal to a greater audience. Those who require something extra are satisfied while those who are more sensitive can keep it on a lower setting.

The vibrations are, however, not at all irritatingly buzzy. They are substantial enough to be felt. I can imagine that this would provide a great public tease, but perhaps is not enough power for many women to orgasm with it alone. The vibrations are without a doubt much more pleasant and powerful than the overhyped Fixsation; it is also more powerful than the We-vibe 1 or 2. At the moment I’m going strictly from memory1 but I feel pretty safe in saying that the Tiani 2’s vibration intensity is just about equal to the We-Vibe 3.

Intelligent Memory Chip / 3X Greater Wireless Range

The very first run of SenseMotion remotes absolutely sucked. If you were in any position other than legs splayed wide, the remote would lose connection and the Tiani would quit vibrating. It wouldn’t transmit through flesh. Then I found out that Lelo had fixed the remotes but were not exactly making it public knowledge. If asked, they would replace your remote for free though. The new remote was indeed much better with transmission; I was able to put my pants on and be 2 rooms away with it still vibrating. With the new & improved SenseMotion, the range is much farther (up to 48 feet) and best of all – if you do lose signal, the vibrations won’t die out. I tried to test this but so far have been unable to lose signal! Basically though if you do lose signal, it will simply revert back to straight vibrations. When the signal can be picked up again it does this automatically; you don’t have to do anything. I gave up reviewing wireless remote control vibrators because inevitably the remotes lacked something; range, ability to tell the remote holder what is going on, etc. This new SenseMotion remote does answer all of those problems.

No Remote Required!

One thing that the original Tiani failed on in comparison to the We-Vibe 3 was that the We-Vibe 3‘s remote wasn’t necessary, it was simply an enhancement. While the remote is still necessary for SenseMotion type play, you can use it without the remote. This is especially handy when you just want to use it during sex and you don’t want a remote buzzing away on the headboard. It’s also handy for those times when you run out of AAA batteries. The little invisible button on the top of the clitoral arm is where you turn it on and then can change settings. The location of this button is an improvement over any of the We Vibes whose button was located on the very tip of the clitoral arm, making it difficult to access when in use.

The way the remote and SenseMotion works is identical to the original Tiani. If you need a refresher on this or somehow have never heard about the Lelo SensMotion line, I will direct you to my original review of the Lelo Tiani, rather than spend 4 paragraphs here re-telling the details of exactly how it works.

Tiani Now Has Two Wearable Attachments

A complaint of the original Tiani was that the internal arm didn’t provide any g-spot stimulation. Since the design of the Tiani is so similar to the We-Vibe, people expect a little more action from that internal arm other than to just hold it in place. With the Lelo Tiani 2 Design Edition2 they’ve given you a choice of two internal arms. The new design is supposed to provide g-spot stimulation. This is where I have to criticize. While many users of the We-Vibe thought that the internal arm was *too* bulky, I think that the internal arm of the Tiani is not enough. This new flared end is a little bit thicker, yes. But the design will not work for everybody. Your g-spot would have to line up exactly with this spot and mine does not.

They also have changed the silicone of the arm, ever so slightly. With my first Tiani I’d complained that the arm was a little too floppy and that it provided no pressure to the clitoral portion. The new Tiani 2 is even more pliable. The silicone is a little more squishy and the thinner portion at the middle of the c-shape is very flexible and pliable.

The upside though to including both internal arm designs is that it will appeal to a larger variety of women. The design differences are not huge but it’s enough that some women will drastically prefer one style over another.

What Else Has Changed?

Another complaint I had with the original Tiani was when you screwed the internal arm on, the threads wanted you to turn it a quarter-turn more for a more secure seal, but the design clearly did not agree with this. This has been fixed, mostly. The two halves are together a little better. While the threads still want to keep going, it’s not as much as the original. You wouldn’t think this a problem, but with the original I would get lube and fluids inside. I’d clean the outside, thinking that was good enough only to unscrew it another day for recharging to find it covered in gunk. Nice, eh? A little bit still gets in, but as you’ll see in the photos, it’s not nearly as bad.

As I said, the remote and SenseMotion functions are identical from the original (except that the vibrations of the remote are quieter). You still need that plastic key to get the remote back off. Many people had no issues getting the remote back off without the use of the included tool; these people proclaimed people like me to be whiners and complainers. Now, perhaps I lack finesse or strength in my hand. Perhaps you don’t. Perhaps I happen to have a remote that is more cantankerous than yours. But I have even more trouble than before getting the remote battery cover off. It will be really hard to see in the photos, but I already chipped off metallic paint (and a teeny sliver of plastic) trying to get mine open with the key. Your mileage may vary.

Changes I wish they’d made but didn’t: I hate that faux-metal band. It’s part of the design, I know, but I hate it. It’s hard to keep clean and the line between plastic and silicone can get gunked up. I wish that the remote were rechargeable. I wish the remote was smaller. These are minor gripes, and fixing them (along with the vibration intensity) would only serve to make the Lelo Tiani 2 practically faultless. As it is, it’s now a vibrator I will recommend for those seeking a wireless remote control vibrator.

So…What’s the Verdict?

If you’re reading this review in the years since I originally wrote it, you may notice that the original Tiani isn’t for sale anymore. There’s the Lelo Tiani 2 and Tiani 3 now, and I’d say that you should pick the Tiani 3.  I recognize, though, that this sex toy isn’t for everyone. For me it would only serve as a teasing toy out in public; it doesn’t enhance sex for me and it is not strong enough to bring on a clitoral orgasm. The We-Vibe 3 is about $20 cheaper, but that $20 is all in the remote. If you really enjoy patterns and pulsation functions, and if you don’t require the power of the Web-Vibe Salsa3 then I can actually recommend this. That’s really saying something, because I would not have recommended the original Tiani to anyone. Lelo has definitely worked out all the kinks in the SenseMotion remote; it’s actually fun now!

 

Thanks to Lelo for letting me review the new & improved Tiani 2, and proving that they do listen to us!

  1. As of this writing I’ve temporarily misplaced the We-Vibe 3. It’s here somewhere. Don’t worry, this happens all the time
  2. Design Edition moniker is to designate it from the original design, for which they won a Red Dot award
  3. Still my go-to vibe; I own 4 of them so I’m never without
Jun 022012
 

First, a little background on why me NOT hating the Picobong Moka is such a shocker

There are a lot of things I disliked about Picobong from the get go. The stupid name that reminds me of something childish; the beachy-fun website with their Hawaiian-like names; the toy designs that left a lot to be desired; and most of all their inability to call things what they are – they cutesy shit up with “C-spot” like we didn’t have enough of that with the oft-used “P-spot” – it’s not a fucking spot it’s a goddamn CLITORIS. The G-spot is the only genital bit allowed to be called a “spot”. Their first run included things like the Honi (a bullet intended for vaginal insertion, but the buttons were inside of you), the Tano (vibrating butt plug where again…the buttons are inside of you AND the seam scrapes your ass), and the Mahana (c-shape for dual stimulation, but rigid design makes it difficult to use).

Despite knowing I would hate it, I willingly reviewed the Honi. The packaging sucked and was ruined by the time it arrived on my doorstep; they included a very baffling 6-sided die with shapes of their sex toys instead of numbers making it nearly as useless as the faux-gold-plated Insignia brooch. I reviewed it because I kept seeing positive reviews on it and I KNEW that it had to be bullshit. I was right. It was buzzy and irritating and weak.

PicoBong Moka is Lelo Gigi’s College Cousin; The adult Skipper-to-their-Barbie, if you will

When I heard that Picobong had a new line coming out, I was unimpressed. Many of us were1. Yet when I saw that the Moka looked a hell of a lot like Gigi at nearly half the price, I just had to review it. HAD TO. I figured I’d be able to compare and contrast with the Gigi until a fruitless search for days finally revealed that I no longer have the Gigi; I swapped it out to someone ages ago. Oops. No worries though, my friend Laura who runs a great Milwaukee sex toy store called The Tool Shed was kind enough to do a quick comparison for me and even snapped a photo of the Moka and Gigi side by side.

Image courtesy of Laura Ann Stewart AKA ToolShedGirl on Twitter

I read over my very old review of the Gigi and recalled why I didn’t quite love it, despite the fact that many, many women love theirs. I had 3 issues with Gigi:

  1. It’s short. Too short for me. And that’s not because my g-spot is buried in the deep depths of my cavernous vagina, it is because I have big tits, a belly and short arms. The Pure Wand still remains my g-spot’s best friend in part due to the length and the extreme curve.
  2. The location of the buttons was exactly where I’d rest my thumb as I held it during use.
  3. The vibrations were decent and serviceable but not strong enough to matter to my g-spot.

The Picobong Moka fixes those first two complaints. According to Laura, the vibration strength and type is pretty much the same between Moka and Gigi. Moka is a little over an inch longer and the head and shaft are also just slightly bigger. Picobong’s bad habit of putting the buttons on the side of their toys proved useless for their little insertable jobs but on the Moka it’s kinda genius. There is no position in which I’d hold this and accidentally hit a button2.

PicoBong's Moka has the control buttons on the side

I know that a lot of sex toy users are reluctant to drop $100 or more on a vibrator. I would be, too. And while I think that the Moka is still a wee bit overpriced and I think it shouldn’t cost a penny over $50, it’s still a very good option for those on a bit of a budget. You’ll get the sorta-rumbly and moderately decent vibrations of the Gigi, the curved shaft and wide, flat head of the Gigi with a little much-needed length and improved button placement. Style-wise it’s more South Beach Party Girl than Southern Belle Sorority Girl (which Gigi so clearly is). And of course you’ll need batteries (2AAA) rather than the supposedly green aspect of a rechargeable sex toy but for many people those can also be positive aspects. So long as you always make sure you have a spare pack of batteries on hand (and really, what seasoned sex toy owner doesn’t?) then you’ll never be at the mercy of waiting on a recharge.

Oh, PicoBong. Is there really a ditzy California surf bum on your staff or do you make this shit up?

Like the Honi, the packaging is utter shit. The box is made of the most flimsy cardboard ever and you will not be able to use it for storage. There’s no bizarre dice included with the recent line of Picobong toys.

The Picobong Moka Box - This is where $30 is saved from the Lelo Gigi

No, instead they’ve changed up the cap so that it has a slightly ridged texture and at the tip of the cap is a hole….for…a lanyard?? WTF? Am I supposed to wear my 8 inch vibe around my neck like the even-more-perverted-and-white version of Flava Flav?

    Picobong Moka on a Lanyard. Cuz I'm fly like that.
Wait, no, I think there’s something else in this mangled box…. OH YES. It’s…..? Yet again, Picobong owners are forced to go to the site en mass to query “WTFISTHIS”. It’s a cute dangle! “Perfect for your phone, keychain, or whatever clever accessory option you come up with, our PicoBong dangles are a just-for-fun addition to your PicoBong experience.” IT’S SO FUN. I DON’T KNOW HOW I HAD FUN BEFORE THIS.

It's a FUN FUN rubber charm!! YAYYYY

Picobong toys are covered in a silicone skin just like Lelo toys are, except with Picobong there’s more silicone and less plastic3. Then again, the silicone skin is merely covering up a hard plastic vibrator. And really, it’s the same for all Lelo toys. There is no plushness, no give – the entire toy is hard and rigid. So why are we even bothering with the silicone skin? Please, enlighten me. And since these are vibrators, you can’t boil them anyways. The silky touch to the silicone skin feels like many matte-finish ABS plastic toys, anyways. Go ahead. Pet the handle of your Mystic Wand and then your Lelo/Picobong toy. See what I mean? And in the case of many Lelo toys, a lot of gunk can get caught in the demarcation line between the silicone skin and the plastic handle. So why bother with the silicone skin??

So, no – I don’t hate the PicoBong Moka. This halfhearted endorsement is, however, not to be confused with an endorsement of the rest of the PicoBong line. But if you’re looking for a quality g-spot vibrator like the Gigi without the luxury pricetag, I will fully recommend the Moka. Because like the Gigi, that wide, flat tip is also pretty great for external use as well. With vibrations identical to the Lelo Mona and Gigi, just as quiet as them too, and a lower price tag it’s really not a bad deal. You’ll get the standard Lelo warranty, as well: 1 year warranty, 10 year “quality guarantee”.

 

The PicoBong Moka is a silicone sex toy with plastic parts and is considered very safe on the material safety scale. As it is a vibrator, you should use only the wipe down method for cleaning.

 

  1. Unimpressed is putting it a bit lightly for the jaded skeptics of our bunch. Nay, we outright mocked the shit out of it
  2. In case you can’t figure it out, you hit the + button to turn it on and up, the – to turn it down and off, and the M to scroll through the ELEVEN different pulsation patterns. It’s ridiculous
  3. This actually leaves you with more insertable length than the Gigi, if that’s something you really need for your G-spot