5 Best Dry Herb Vaporizers of 2020-21 Reviewed
Weed culture and industry gets fancier and more sophisticated as we grow into an era where weed is slowly becoming legal around the world. As such, the ways people enjoy cannabis change too, allowing users far more choice in terms of how they consume. One of the biggest uptrends in weed culture, which has been rising rapidly over the last five to ten years has been the introduction of vaporizers tailored to smoking weed.
Like with the big move in recent years from cigarettes to electronic alternatives, so has the weed industry started to move towards safer and more sustainable ways of consuming cannabis. While weed has nothing on cigarettes in terms of detriment to your health, the core action of inhaling smoke is still never healthy for your lungs.
Vaping weed offers smokers a safer and often more convenient alternative in lieu if rolling up a joint or a blunt. In this article, we’re going to take a look at the pros and cons, and mechanisms of vaping weed; and review our Top 5 Dry Herb Vapes of 2020-21.
A dry herb vaporizer, in its most basic form, is an electronic device which heats weed to a level where it produces a vapour containing all sorts of cannabinoids from the plant matter, which you can smoke. It’s different from combustion as it doesn’t actually burn the weed.
Weed needs to be heated to a certain level before it produces intoxicating effects – this is the same mechanism behind decarboxylation (heating weed to a certain level when making edibles), and the reason why eating raw weed won’t get you high.
Decarb, however, occurs at a lower temperature than combustion, meaning that you don’t actually need to burn your weed to gain an effect from it. This means you can vape weed without worry of smoke, tar, or carcinogens contained in the weed or rolling papers.
There are a number of benefits to a weed vape. The first and foremost is the obvious lack of smoke, but there are a number of others you may not have considered as they’re not as obvious. Let’s take a look at some of these benefits:
- More convenient to use than rolling a joint or preparing a pipe.
- Discreet to use in public, or around those who have issues with you smoking weed.
- Better and more accurate flavour profile.
- Cheaper and more efficient. Some vapes can convert near double the amount of THC than your average joint would.
- Vapes can pack a real punch in fewer hits than a joint.
With all of these considered, it almost seems silly not to have the option of a weed vape on hand. If you’re a regular consumer like we are at Cannabuddy, it’s always nice to have a little collection of devices and paraphernalia on hand for whatever tickles your fancy at any given moment.
The short answer is ‘Yes’.
While the smell is far reduced, very different in nature and is not produced in the same quantity thanks to the potency of weed vapour, there is still a distinct smell attached to vaping. However, this smell is a lot more similar to the smell of weed butter or tea than burning weed, and it smells a lot more like ‘plant’ and less like ‘dank’.
You’ll have to experiment for yourself, and it’s highly dependant on who’s likely to smell it, but there are many vapes where the smell is extremely hard to notice, if not impossible. While this doesn’t mean you should go around vaping weed in your Uber, or a building lift (because that would just be really inconsiderate and give weed users a bad name), it does mean that you’re able to be a lot more discreet with your smoking.
Here are our choices for the Top 5 Dry Herb Vapes of 2019. You may recognize some of these as the stalwarts of vaped cannabis, but they’re there for a reason.
All the brands listed here are some of the most reliable and trustworthy vape manufacturers, with great tutorial documentation and tech support.
PAX is one of the most well-known and most popular manufacturers of vapes, and you likely know of them (even if you don’t think you do) thanks to the recent success of their e-cigarette sub-company, JUUL.
Stylish and discreet, the PAX 3 comes in two options of a cheaper ‘vape only’, and more expensive ‘full kit’ option. If you’re just looking to vape, you don’t need the full kit, however if you’d like the option of switching between dry herb and concentrates, the full kit is for you. The PAX 3 has four temperature settings by using the button, and degree-by-degree adjustable temps if you connect it to your PAX mobile app via bluetooth.
The full kit also comes with two mouthpieces, a cleaning kit, and a number of other nifty tools and additions. Both come with a charging dock and USB cable making it easy to keep fully charged on the run. It’s not too big or small, and uses only one button which completes the simple, elegant style.
Simply fill up the oven at the bottom of the vape with your flower or concentrate, press the button to heat it up (which completes in a record breaking 22 seconds), select your heat setting and get ready to get blazed!
DaVinci has long been the company chasing at the heels of PAX, and for good reason. The IQ is their latest in discreet dry herb vaporizers, coming in at a little smaller of a size than their well-known Ascent. While the look of the vape isn’t as stylish or flashy as the PAX, it’s preferred by many (including us at Cannabuddy) for its quality, techy-looking build and compact size.
It comes with a rechargeable and replaceable battery that offers around an hour of continued use, and takes about three to charge via the micro USB port. There’s a nifty LED display on the front displaying temperature and battery settings, and a ceramic oven in which your dry herb is placed.
Temps are adjustable from 250-430 fahrenheit, and the vape offers both an ‘On-Demand Hit’ and an ‘Energy Saving’ setting to make use more efficient and easily tailored to your movement and activities. There are of course, as it seems a growing trend, bluetooth-to-app capabilities allowing you to more finely adjust your settings in each session, as well as track stats around your usage. We’re not quite sure why you’d want to, but it’s cool nonetheless.
The IQ also comes with DaVinci’s Smart Path technology, which is essentially a four-level temperature gauge. These four settings vaporize within their own temperature range, and from low to high, essentially change which chemicals and cannabinoids are being activated – allowing you to choose your high from a mild head high, to a full on, knockout body high.
Volcanoes are somewhat of a godfather of cannabis vaporizers. They’re desktop based, as opposed to handheld, and you’ve likely seen their trademark plastic vapour bags in the background of some VICE documentary on the cannabis industry.
They’re a staple of vaping cannabis because thanks to their build and size, they’re incredibly durable and are somewhat closer to something like a microwave than an e-cigarette, when trying to compare them to normal dry herb vapes.
With a fully adjustable digital temperature control presented via an LED on the front, they’re probably still the best way to vape cannabis, even with all the new competitors. You simply clip your balloon onto the ‘mouth’ of the Volcano, dial in your select settings and wait for it to fill up. Once ready, simply sip from the mouthpiece of the balloon like you would any other vape, until you reach the desired effects.
These are quite commonplace to find in coffee shops or dispensaries for customers to use, so be sure to give one a shot if you live somewhere you think you might stumble upon one. Otherwise, if you’re an experienced weed-vaper, this might just be the upgrade you’re looking for.Check Price
The Arizer Go is a new, compact vape from Arizer, another of the titans of the weed-vape industry. It’s slightly cheaper than the PAX 3 and slightly more expensive than the IQ, making it a great in-the-middle choice for the undecided. All in all, it arrived to great acclaim from those who were a little up in the air about Arizer.
It’s operated with three buttons and a small black and white screen, with individual degree temperature settings – a sure step up from the others we’ve mentioned here that require an app connection for the same function.
It’s got a lovely shape to fit in your hand or bag, and designed with a little bit of grip to make sure it’s not easily going to fly across the room during your smoked-out re-enactment of that time you ate too many brownies and got, like, so totally high, dude. The oven is in the bottom end of the mouthpiece, which is removable, allowing for a small portion of weed to be stuffed in for use.
The stem (mouthpiece) on the vape is somewhat hidden – the top surface of the vape is a little extended, and when you’re ready to use it you simply press down upon it, revealing the glass mouthpiece as the surface clicks into place. When you’re done, just click the button on the back so the panel pops back up to cover the stem.
With a number of really handy adjustable settings via the menu, and an easy-to-clean mouthpiece, it’s almost a shock that this isn’t more popular than the PAX or IQ, but we’ll have to see how that’s going in a year or two.Check Price
Now, beauty is in the eye of the beholder – that’s undeniable. What’s also undeniable is how darn pretty this G Pen vape is. We were going to avoid including a G Pen in this article due to lacklustre previous experiences with them, however after some research it looks like G Pen is back on the market with a far more solid and reliable range, which people are loving.
The Nova from Grenco Science is honestly one of the best-looking dry herb vaporizers we’ve ever set eyes upon, and it does concentrates too, just to boot. It’s got a really reasonable price point, and is incredibly discreet – more so than its competitors. While the PAX and IQ are small, they’re not really shaped or designed like e-cigarettes, and that can lead to questions. The Nova, however, is elegantly designed to look exactly like your regular e-cig, in a gorgeous matte black finish.
There are 3 temperature settings for ease of use, as well as an extended draw setting allowing you to take some massive hits, should the urge arise. In addition, there’s an auto-heat mode for using concentrates that are a little thicker or need more time to warm up. Using a ceramic heating element and quartz bowl, it has no issues vaping flower or concentrate of many kinds – as well as creating great flavour and aroma profiles.
This is a stellar return by G Pen and we dearly hope to see them continue trying to innovate and outdo themselves, as well as other vape manufacturers.Check Price
You’re spoilt for choice now. It’s 2019, it’s legal to smoke at home in South Africa, pollution is getting worse and we’re running out of trees. It’s time to stop with the excuses and switch to a vape, before you get left behind in the dust.
In all seriousness though, these devices are no longer just a novelty. There’s a whole world of practicality to them that you simply can’t find in a joint, bong or blunt, that can lead to completely new experiences with weed.
Seriously, when was the last time you encountered a joint with a heat setting? Well, now that we think of it, we’re sure it won’t be long until that’s a possibility.