Top 5 Desktop Vaporizers
Desktop vaporizers provide the best quality vapour and performance. Due to the fact they are bigger and run off mains power rather than batteries, they tend to have more consistent heating and more powerful extraction capabilities overall.
Desktop vaporizers are the best choice if you intend to use your vaporizer in the home. Not only do they provide the best quality vapour, but they are often better quality machines and come with more substantial warranty periods. Desktop vaporizers come in a range of different inhalation styles and can be either digital or analogue.
If you're looking for a desktop vaporizer but aren't sure which one is right for you, read our list of the top five desktops from across the range.
1. The Volcano
The German-made Volcano has been the number one vaporizer on the market for decades, and with good reason. Not only is it extremely robust and built to last, but the Volcano offers the most efficient vapour extraction of any other vaporizer.
The Volcano heats using a patented Aluminum heat exchanger, Storz & Bickel's own invention. Aluminum is an ingenious material to use for this purpose, as it responds to temperature fluctuations extremely fast. The Volcano's precise temperature regulation keeps the chamber at a consistent temperature for the most even and efficient extraction possible. According to Storz & Bickel, this makes the Volcano 75% more efficient than traditional methods!
The Volcano is the only dedicated balloon vaporizer on the market. It works by using an internal fan to push hot air through your botanicals to collect vapour inside a bag that you can inhale from. This is an extremely convenient and popular method of vaporizing among all kinds of users.
The Volcano's design is thoughtful and efficient in every aspect. All components are made from heavy duty, heat-resistant plastic so they never get too hot to touch. The Volcano is also incredibly low maintenance, as the plastic components don't accumulate dirt and residue easily.
The Volcano is available in a Classic model, which uses a dial and 9 pre-set temperatures, or in a Digit, which has a digital display, can be set to specific temperatures and has an auto shut-off feature if you accidentally leave it on. In terms of vapour quality, maintenance and ease of use, this machine is a solid investment.
- Decades of satisfied customers
- High quality materials
- Will last for years
- Unprecedented efficiency and consistent results
- Bags provide smooth, cool vapour
- You can vape away from the machine once the balloon is full
- High Price
- Can be slow to heat up
- Internal fan can be loud
2. The Plenty
Also made by Storz & Bickel, the Plenty is a smaller unit that delivers extremely high quality vapour. If you want the brute strength of the Volcano in a direct inhalation vaporizer, the Plenty is your answer.
Not a true desktop vaporizer but not quite a portable, the Plenty is a hand-held plugin unit. It utilises the same Aluminum heat exchanger seen inside the Volcano, which yields extremely efficient and consistent results. The Plenty has a very large, flat herb chamber that maximises the surface area of your herbs and allows them to vaporize evenly for very consistent results. The Plenty's coiled stainless steel draw tube cools the vapour as you draw, making vapour smooth and pleasant to inhale even on higher heat settings.
The Plenty is an analogue vaporizer with temperatures ranging from 130°C to 202°C shown by a thermometer on the face of the unit. This thermometer measures temperature right at the chamber itself for the ultimate accuracy and precision.
While the Plenty's performance is true to the prestigious Storz & Bickel name, it does leave something to be desired in its design. The Plenty is not free-standing, which can make it awkward to use. This may not be an issue for some but is considered inconvenient by others. However, this can be an advantage if you want to vaporize in small groups, as you can easily pass the Plenty in between friends.
- Excellent vapour quality
- Stainless steel cooling coil for pleasant vapour
- Small and easy to store
- Hand-held and does not stand freely
- Low temperature range
3. The Silver Surfer (SSV)
The ultimate whip vaporizer, the Silver Surfer is manufactured by US vaporizer giants 7th Floor who are famous for their quality craftsmanship.
The SSV uses an all-ceramic heating element and incorporates durable hand-blown glass pieces in a myriad of designs. The SSV is a good-looking vaporizer, but its slanted appearance actually serves an important function. The reverse 90° angled heater cover prevents herbs from spilling out of the wand, which is an issue in many whip units where the wand connects to the heater cover horizontally.
The SSV is ergonomically designed for functionality and produces top-notch vapour. It's also a very clean unit thanks to the combination of ceramic, glass and 7th Floor's own food grade tubing, which they claim is cleaner than silicone as it won't pick up oils from your hands.
7th Floor also makes the Da Buddha vaporizer, which can be considered a “no frills” version of the SSV and produces very similar results. Despite the fact the Da Buddha is the more recent desktop released by 7th Floor, it lacks some of the ingenuity that makes the Silver Surfer such a stand out.
- Tough anodized aluminium exterior, quality hand blown glass and full ceramic element.
- Ergonomic design keeps herbs inside the wand and prevents spillage
- Aesthetic appeal and endless customization
- Instant-heating ceramic element for fast and smooth vaporization
- Easy to use
- Hands-free options available
- Analogue temp knob with no temperature markings can make it difficult to find your preferred setting
4. The Extreme Q
The Extreme Q is a very popular choice for those who want a mid-priced desktop vaporizer with a range of inhalation options. The Extreme Q is a multifunction vaporizer, meaning it can be used with a whip and can also fill balloons. If you want a balloon vaporizer but can't afford a Volcano, the Extreme Q is a popular alternative.
The Extreme Q provides full digital control and is made from durable stainless steel. It is very lightweight and whisper quiet, which makes it a great option for those looking for a more discreet desktop unit.
The Extreme Q uses a ceramic heating element and glass-on-glass vaporization for the ultimate purity and is the “jack of all trades” of the vaporizer world. Performance-wise, the Extreme Q is satisfactory. It can produce medium-thick vapour with a whip or light, fragrant vapour with a bag, and also accommodates a glass aroma bowl for scenting the room when you're finished a session.
The Extreme Q is extremely good value for money. For a modest price, you get a vaporizer that provides a wealth of choice and is made from good quality materials. The Extreme Q offers digital temperature control ranging from 50°C - 250°C and is the only vaporizer that comes with a remote control. The multi-speed fan makes it possible to control the vapour density and the auto-shutoff function will save your machine and your herbs if you forget to turn off your Extreme Q. The glass parts have been known to be fragile, but should last a long time with proper care.
- Value for money
- Digital temperature control
- Multifunction operation
- Convenient remote control
- Glass-on-glass vaporization
- Durable stainless steel exterior
- Glass pieces are known to be fragile
5. The VaporBrothers
The VaporBrothers Hands Free Vaporizer is to whip vaporizers what the Volcano is to bags. Created by a group of eclectic friends in 1999, this wooden box-style vaporizer was one of the first whip vapes and has had many imitators since its inception.
VaporBrothers are serious when it comes to clean and natural materials. The VB uses a “natural mineral” ceramic element and absolutely no glues, solvents or metals are used in its construction; so you can rest assured you are inhaling nothing but pure unadulterated vapour. The VB also uses high quality glass pieces and medical grade silicone whip tubing, making it entirely clean and safe to use in all points of its construction. Incredibly basic, the VB is a “no frills” vaporizer that is completely analogue and comes with nothing but the essentials.
Created with natural inert materials to be as clean and efficient as possible, it's easy to see why the VB is the unit of choice for many health conscious vapers. Considered by some to be a benchmark in vaporizer quality, the VaporBrothers Hands Free Vaporizer is not just a pretty face. It offers natural and intuitive vaporization that anyone can master, and also comes complete with a limited lifetime warranty.
- Limited lifetime warranty
- Clean, high quality materials
- Pure vapour with great taste
- Intuitive design and easy to use
- Decades of use
- Form factor can be clunky/awkward to use
- Combustion can occur due to lack of temperature control