Portable dry herb vaporizers are extremely popular, and you'll see lots of people vaping using these devices around town. But they're not the only type of vape out there.
There's also a style of vaporizer designed specifically for use in the home. Desktop vapes (also called tabletop vaporizers) have advantages and disadvantages compared to their portable cousins. We'll go over the differences in performance, features, price, and have a look at the range of desktops on the market. And we’ll see how desktop vaporizers compare with portable vapes.
All dry herb vaporizers work along the same basic design. They heat up dry herbs (like cannabis) using precise temperature control. Once it reaches a high enough temperature, the herb releases cannabinoids into vapor.
The herbs are heated in a bowl or chamber, by a heating element located in the unit. This avoids the drawbacks of combustion methods like smoking a joint: smoke is a lot more harmful to lung health than vapor.
Most desktop vaporizers use a convection heating system. In vapes with convection heating, the heating chamber isn't directly beside the heating element. Instead as you take a draw from the mouthpiece, the device will heat the air, and then pass the hot air over the herbs in the chamber.
Convection heating is very efficient with your herb, and can deliver high vapor quality and large clouds. However, it takes longer for the unit to heat up to the target temperature. Convection vaporization also requires a lot more power, which is why most convection vapes need to plug into a wall outlet to work.
Styles of Desktop Vaporizers
Most tabletop devices have features and accessories to make them more user friendly and enhance the vaping experience. Different models might include a whip (a long tube), or could be balloon style with a fan and bags. They might feature hands free usage, a remote control, or other accessories.
Whip style vaporizer
Some units include a whip that connects the mouthpiece to the main device. This makes it more convenient to hit, but makes the vapor path longer. Draws will be a bit weaker and less flavorful.
Balloon-style desktop vapes
Many devices are equipped with an internal fan, and don't require the user to inhale. The vaporizer will fill a bag with vapor for you! Once the bag is full, users can take hits from the bag. This method is great for group sessions, because it makes using a vaporizer so simple.
Storz & Bickel Volcano Hybrid vs. Arizer Extreme Q
A desktop vaporizer can also use a hybrid of both vaporizing systems, letting you choose between using a whip and vapor bags depending on the session. The Volcano Hybrid is very powerful, and considered the best desktop vaporizer in many reviews, but it isn't cheap. The Arizer Extreme Q is a lot more affordable, but doesn't offer the same smooth hits and vapor quality.
Best Desktop Vaporizers
It's a classic, but in general the Storz & Bickel Volcano line gets the best reviews. There's the classic Volcano, the hybrid version, and a gold-plated version. They definitely look cool and are built with durable materials. Although powerful and consistent, they cost a lot of money and might not offer enough value for the cost.
In general, if your budget isn't unlimited, a desktop vape might not be worth the price. The increased power and vapor production might not be worth paying a lot for, while also sacrificing portability.
For folks looking to vape at home, desktops can be the perfect solution, especially if you're looking for a larger bowl size. But most new users choose to go with portable vaporizers.
Desktop vs portable vaporizer
Even inside your own house, a portable vaporizer can be more convenient than a tabletop system. You can move from room to room with ease, and it'll heat up at a faster speed. But for many people the lower cost is in itself the biggest selling point.
The one problem with portable vapes is that they can be tough to reload while you're on the move. You need to open the vaporizer, empty out any remaining dry herbs, wait for it to cool down before loading it again. It's awkward and usually inconvenient. Especially since you should grind your cannabis flower before you vaporize. (Or you’ll get weaker vapor and waste herb.)
Furna lets you prepare your vaporizer for an excursion in the most convenient way possible. You can load up multiple ovens with herb in the comfort of your own home. Then, when you're out, you can instantly swap a used oven for a fresh one whenever you want.
The ovens are made of food-grade stainless steel, but Furna also has specialized concentrate ovens with a ceramic element, making it just as convenient and mess-free to enjoy cannabis concentrates. These ovens can be loaded and swapped just as easily. The vapor path is all steel and ceramic, material that won't change the flavor of your herb, so you can experience the pure flavor of your strain.
Furna also features excellent battery life, with each charge lasting for 15-20 vaping sessions, and a much more full display than most portable vapes. In terms of portability and versatility, it's the best option out there.