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[en] Light absorption enhancement of aged soot aerosols is highly sensitive to the morphologies and mixing states of soot aggregates and their non-absorbing coatings, such as organic materials. The quantification of these effects on the optical properties of thinly coated soot aerosols is simulated using an effective model with fixed volume fractions. Fractal aggregated soot was simulated using the diffusion limited aggregation (DLA) algorithm and discretized into soot dipoles. The dipoles of non-absorbing aerosols, whose number was fixed by the volume fraction, were further generated from the neighboring random edge dipoles. Their optical properties were calculated using the discrete dipole approximation (DDA) method and were compared with other commonly used models. The optical properties of thinly coated soot calculated using the fixed volume fraction model are close to (less than ~10% difference) the results of the fixed coating thickness model, except their asymmetry parameters (up to ~25% difference). In the optical simulations of thinly coated soot aerosols, this relative difference of asymmetry parameters and phase functions between these realistic models may be notable. The realizations of the fixed volume fraction model may introduce smaller variation of optical results than those of the fixed coating thickness model. Moreover, the core-shell monomers model and homogeneous aggregated spheres model with the Maxwell-Garnett (MG) theory may underestimate (up to ~20%) the cross sections of thinly coated soot aggregates. The single core-shell sphere model may largely overestimate (up to ~150%) the cross sections and single scattering albedo of thinly coated soot aggregates, and it underestimated (up to ~60%) their asymmetry parameters. It is suggested that the widely used single core-shell sphere approximation may not be suitable for the single scattering calculations of thinly coated soot aerosols. - Highlights: • Fixed volume fraction model is applied for optical simulations of thinly coated soot. • Optical diversity between different models may be caused by morphological differences. • This model simulated similar (<10%) cross sections from fixed coating thickness model. • Differences of asymmetry parameters between these models may be obvious (up to ~25%). • Three other widely used models were investigated with large diversities (up to ~150%).