The purpose of this experiment was to compare independently the influence of different cigarette smoke taste categories and different machine standard smoke yield values on cigarette smoking behavior and related subjective measures. In six separate sessions 15 regular smokers were presented with a medium and a low smoke yield cigarette of each of the three taste categories, mentholated, dark (Gauloises) and blond (Muratti) tobacco. Each session included a "natural" and a "forced" smoking procedure of one cigarette type only. Forced smoking consisted of smoking 30 puffs whereby a new half-length cigarette was presented after every third puff. During the seventh session, habitual brand cigarettes were smoked as a reference. The sessions followed in weekly intervals, and the subjects became familiar with the test cigarettes during the last 5 days preceding each test session. Although general acceptability of the cigarettes, smoking satisfaction and pleasantness of taste were clearly lower for all test cigarettes as opposed to the habitual brand reference cigarettes, these measures remained unaffected by taste or smoke yield of the test cigarettes. Harshness of smoke was higher in the dark tobacco category and generally decreased with the lower smoke yield cigarettes. Independent effects of taste and smoke yield were obtained for total puff volume, inhalation time and CO absorption, suggesting a compensatory intensification of smoking behavior for low yield cigarettes and an independent increase of smoking intensity from mentholated to dark tobacco to blond tobacco. The results suggest therefore that factors which affect cigarette smoke taste have effects on smoking behavior which are separate from those obtained by comparing smoke yields.