More and more people are turning to dry herb vaporizers as their preferred way to consume cannabis. Compared with smoking, herb vaping is easier on the lungs, creates less of an odor, and allows the flavor of the cannabis to come through more clearly. But are the best dry herb vaporizers really worth the price?
It’s easy to see why some people stick with smoking - rolling papers and pipes are cheap, while vaping can seem like a big expense. But in the long run, a dry herb vaporizer can help you save money on cannabis.
Dry herb vapes allow you to get the most possible THC and/or CBD from your cannabis, meaning your weed lasts longer. You're even able to make use of a session's leftovers - AVB or already vaped bud can be used in all kinds of ways.
Still, there are many brands and styles of vaporizers, and it’s tough to know where to begin. The range of devices out there is vast, and so is the price difference between low-end portable vape pens and the best desktop vaporizers. It’s daunting! This article will help you decide which style of device is best for you.
Avoid Low-End Dry Herb Vaporizers
Below a certain price point, vaporizers will be of such low quality that they don’t deliver any of the benefits a dry herb vape is supposed to provide. It’s not worth getting something on the low end of the price spectrum - its vapor won't give you the effects you’re looking for, and you’ll want a better vaporizer in no time.
The key to getting the full effects from a dry herb vaporizer is fine temperature control. When vaping, you’ll want to choose the temperature that works best for that particular strain. You also might want to target the temperature to unlock (or avoid) specific terpenes.
Without even heat distribution and precise temperature settings, you’ll end up scorching your herb or missing parts of the bowl. This will mean wasted herb, and weaker vapor.
What to look for in a portable dry herb vape
Another question you’ll want to ask yourself is whether you’re looking for a portable vape. Lower-end vapes are more awkward to carry/store, have poor battery life, and tend to be made out of low-quality materials. If you’re looking for a portable vape that won’t die on you in the middle of an outing, or that will hold up to a bit of wear and tear, you’ll want to avoid a low-end vape.
For maximum portability, you’ll want something like the Furna, which lets you pre-load multiple ovens so that it’s a breeze to reload once you've finished a bowl. Furna lets you do it instantly, but the average portable dry herb vaporizer can be awkward to reload when you're out and about.
Lower-end vaporizers also tend to have smaller ovens, making it harder to share sessions with others. Finally, they can be very annoying to clean when compared with the higher-end vapes.
If your vaporizer isn’t able to maintain a correct temperature, is built from low-quality materials, and is difficult to clean and keep the airflow flowing correctly, you’re going to end up getting effective vapor from your herb. And you’ll end up spending more on cannabis because you’re not getting the efficiency benefits of a higher-end, well-maintained vaporizer.
Adequate portable vaporizers
Once you leave the bargain basement, you start finding vapes that provide most, but not all, of the features you’ll want in a vaporizer. These vaporizers will get the job done if you’re in a pinch, and they usually deliver on the most important element: temperature control. Which, again, is key for getting the effects you’re looking for from cannabis, as well as getting your herb supply to stretch further.
Portable vaporizers in this budget price range tend to be more durable than the cheapest dry herb vape pens, but are still made of parts that might not last long-term. They have less power, meaning weaker vapor. It might taste worse as well, depending on the materials used in the vapor path.
They also usually suffer from slow charge times, poor battery life, slow heat up time, and aren't easy or convenient to clean. Finally, they're usually bulkier in terms of portability, and less sleek in terms of design.
Quality Dry Herb Vaporizers
If you’re investing in a dry herb vape, it makes sense to buy one that performs not just at an adequate level, but one that you’ll enjoy using over the long-term. Otherwise, you’ll soon find yourself wanting to replace it because the battery life sucks or it’s always gummed up because it’s too annoying to clean.
Low-end vaporizers cut corners wherever possible, so things like quality construction and fast charge times have to be sacrificed. The quality of vapor production and strength and flavor of the vapor is usually worse. None of the cheaper models can compare with the vaping experience you’ll get with higher-end vapes like the Furna, Storz & Bickel Crafty+, DaVinci IQ2, and PAX 3.
Although they cost more than other vaporizers on the market, the best dry herb vaporizers are worth the price. However, these vapes still have their pros and cons, so have a look at our in-depth looks into the Crafty+ vape, PAX 3 vs Furna, and our DaVinci IQ2 review to learn more.
Extra versatility: vaping cannabis concentrates
If you’re planning on vaping concentrates like shatter and wax, you need to make sure your vape is able to do so. Some vaporizers only work with dry herbs, and some let you use concentrates but require inserts which can be difficult to handle and require care.
Furna has a specialized concentrate oven available, meaning no fumbling around with hot or messy parts. Furna uses a swappable oven system that makes reloading instantaneous and hassle-free, and the concentrate ovens are just as easy to swap in as dry herb ovens. With other vapes, you’ll have to clean the oven in between each use, which isn't always convenient when you're on the go.
Desktop vaporizers and specialized devices
The best portable vapes discussed in the previous section are top-notch in terms of delivering on everything you would want from a dry herb vaporizer. Beyond a certain price point, you’d only want to shell out if you’ve got a very specific need.
For example, a classic expensive vape is the Storz & Bickel Volcano. It’s a large desktop dry herb vaporizer ideal for sharing with a group, and it needs to be plugged into a wall outlet to work. It’s definitely pricey, but it can be worth it if a powerful desktop vaporizer is what you’re looking for.
If you're exploring desktop vapes, and are wondering whether they're worth getting over a portable unit, check out our article on choosing between portable and desktop vaporizers for more information.
How Much to Spend on a Portable Vaporizer
Even though it might not be worth it for you to spend big bucks on the Volcano, it definitely makes sense to invest in a quality dry herb vaporizer that can produce vapor that works, instead of a toy that won’t be effective or efficient with your herb.
Buying a vape with proper temperature control is just the bare minimum - if you’re investing in a dry herb vape, you should get one that’s built to last, and that will serve your needs in the long term. And one whose battery won’t crap out on you after two sessions.
And if you’re looking for maximum portability, Furna’s swappable oven system is the ultimate in freedom for a portable vaporizer. Reloading your vape on the go has never been easier or faster. And with concentrate ovens also available (and no messy or hot inserts required to use them), it’s the most versatile and convenient vape on the market. Check out Furna today.