If you want to take the vaping experience outdoors, there are a few things to consider on how to choose the best vaporizer. How are you going to power it? Is it going to be robust enough to withstand being carried about in a bag or pocket? How discrete do you need to be when you’re vaping? How easy will it be to use? Will the vapor quality it produces be worth the hassle? How much do you want to spend?
Basically, the choice for a cannabis vaporizer will be between a portable vaporizer, a vape pen, or a pre-filled vaporizer. Vaporizers is an umbrella term that is used to encompass multi material vaporizers, dry herb vaporizers, and cannabis extract vaporizers. Extract vaporizers, known more commonly as concentrate vaporizers come in the form of wax pens, enails, and pre filled THC and CBD vaporizer pens.
In this article, we’ll be looking at the features you should be looking for in a portable vaporizer, to help you decide which one’s for you. If you already know the type of vaporizer you are looking for you can enter into one of the following price categories to browse the best devices.
Vaping material - How to choose the best vaporizer
The first question to ask yourself is what do you want to vape. You have three choices of mediums to vape either THC dominant or CBD dominant cannabis:
dry herbs - these are the most common vaping material, they work out cheaper than the alternatives, and they’re easy to prepare. Bear in mind, however, that you’ll have to have a grinder to prepare your herbs for vaping. This is something else you’ll have to tote around with you, along with your herbs themselves and your vaporizer.
waxes - these are more concentrated, produce more vapor, give a stronger effect. The downside is that they’re more expensive, and they can leave a sticky residue inside your vape chamber which can be a pain to remove.
Oils and Liquids - these are convenient and easy to tote around. CBD oil is a cannabis compound that does not include psychoactive effects and BHO (butane hash oil) is high potency THC.
Many portable vaporizers are designed for use with any of the above materials. Some require attachments for use with e-fluids. To be honest, if you’re going to vape e-fluid, you’d be better off with a pen. But what you’re vaping is an important consideration, as some devices perform better for your preferred materials than others. And it’s worth taking that into account.
Prices vary, from around $30 to around $400. But, as my old man used to say: you get what you pay for. If you have the money, it's a good idea to invest it in the best vaporizer you can afford (‘the best’ being the one that has the qualities that are important to you).
That said, not all inexpensive vaporizers are bad, and not all expensive vaporizers are worth the money. Again, see what more experienced vapers are saying to help you decide which device offers the best value within your budget. The following links provide you with some of the most popular devices filtered by price.
It’s important to check the build quality of the device. Some designs are flimsy and prone to getting damaged, especially if you’re the clumsy type. This is particularly true of devices that have glass components. Some can break down after only a few months or require a bit more maintenance to keep them working efficiently. Lucky, the market’s full of great options.
The problem is that, while a device might look great on the outside, it’s what goes on in the inside that really counts, and this is hard to judge just from looking at it.
The best tip is to read the reviews and comments on a wide range of websites. Folks who have already tried out a particular device are the best placed to tell you how well it’s been put together and how well it functions.
Also, look for a manufacturer’s warranty. These are usually only offered by makers who are really confident it the build quality of their product.
As I say, the market’s full of great options. The competition between manufacturers is fierce, which means they’re generally keen to ensure their devices don’t disappoint. Again, find out what other vapers are using and you won’t go far wrong. Customer reviews are very helpful and usually the consensus is on the right path.
This is ultimately what it all comes down to: the quality and flavor of the vapor your device produces.
Flavor is one of the more subjective qualities when it comes to vaping. But what creates good flavor (apart from the quality of your material itself) are the heating chamber, air pathway, and mouthpiece.
Glass is the best material to have in a vaporizer. Although it’s breakable, it won’t affect the flavor at all because of its smoothness and purity. However, because they’re more efficient at heating up and cooling off - and also because they are less fragile than glass - ceramic and stainless steel are also commonly used, especially within dry herb vaporizers. While they detract from flavor just a little (it’s hard to notice unless you’re a real connoisseur), either of these materials still produce excellent flavor. So don’t get too hung up about it.
Heating temperature also affects flavour. As a general rule, lower heating temperature produce a smoother taste but smaller clouds, while high temperature produce larger clouds but a harsher taste. Look for a vaporizer which has good and accurate temperature control, so you can experiment to get the vapor quality you prefer.
Convection vs. conduction
Some devices heat your material by passing hot air through it (convection) while others heat it by direct contact with a hot surface (conduction). The general consensus is that convection heating is more efficient and gets more from your material than conduction heating does.
However, it comes at a price. Convection is more difficult – and more expensive – to achieve. Hence, conduction heating is more common in portable vaporizers
The biggest drawback to conduction vaporizers is that you run the risk of combusting your material instead of vaporizing it. Conduction is also an uneven method of heating, which means you have to periodically stir or shake the material.
Portability,discreteness and ease of use
One of the most important considerations in choosing a portable vaporizer is its ease of use. Portable vaporizers lack the hefty power supplies found in desktop models, so you’ll need to think about how often and how long you want your sessions to last. By far the most prevalent portable vaporizers use replaceable and.or rechargeable batteries to power their heat source. Some are compatible with standard AA batteries, making them a bit more versatile.
Chargeable devices come with their own USB-ready chargers, which mean you can recharge almost anywhere you have a power source.A number of portable vaporizers on the market are designed for discrete use. These devices often have profiles that make them look like pens, drink cups, asthma inhalers, and other common items. While stealth vaporizers are fairly inconspicuous, some users may find them lacking in functionality. Some don't have precision temperature controls or quite as many safety features. Nonetheless, their relatively low price means they still serve a function as carry-along devices.
As with everything, however, the technology is always improving. A number of portable vaporizers feature digital temperature controls that allow users to select specific heat-outputs. Others simply incorporate level switches with preset high/low functionality. Advanced heat control systems are generally more expensive though.
Also bear in mind that small vaporizers are often harder to clean and maintain than larger models. While portable vaporizers are fine for occasional use, some lack the build quality needed to survive wear and tear, and cheaper models with non-removable heat elements may be irreparable following breakdowns.
Portable vaporizers can be fun ways to vape on the go, and there are a number of options available. The two golden rules when choosing the best one for your needs are:
Consider functionality and practicality before novelty.
Make sure to do your research. Find out what others are saying about the various devices on the market and be guided by their experience. For more information on choosing a vaporizer you can read our vaporizer tips and advice article.
When your ready to start browsing the industries best devices - You can choose from one of the price filters below: