How to Choose a Vaporizer

Whether vaping herbs or getting the dab on with wax, choosing the right vape pen can be complicated. We break down what to look for and where the main differences occur. Use this guide before you hit the vape shop or risk being overwhelmed by options.

by: John Winston | 08/14/17 1:30PM


The decision to use a vaporizer or not is a pretty simple one. But choosing the one for you can be overwhelming. Before anything, know what you are vaping if you want to narrow things down. Whether dry herb, wax, oils or e liquid, it is a fundamental question. You may also think, should I spring for a high end vape pen, or should I stick with one that is more affordable and gets the job done? Once you have established your credentials, there are going to be a number of decisions that you’ll have to make -- regarding both the appearance and the functionality of the vaporizer -- in order to determine what kind of vaporizer you’d like to have. Our blog about vape pens really explains some key differences.


Vape Parts, heating chambers, mouthpiece

Availability of Vape Parts and Replacements

The universe of vaporizers is both beautiful and diverse. As a result, different vaporizers offer varying degrees of availability in regards to their components. Some vaporizers -- like the Titan 2 or the E-CLIPSE, for example -- do not need a great number of accessories if any, despite the sophisticated nature of the vapes themselves.

Other vaporizers, like the AGO vape models come equipped with several easily-replaceable vape parts. These include coils, heating chambers, glass globes, filters, screens, and even interchangeable vape mouthpieces.

Vape Batteries

Battery Capacity

This one is key. To know how much storage capacity a battery has, just look at the "mah". The difference between a long-lasting and a shorter-lasting vape battery can make the difference between a great night out and a shortened night out.

Then again, there are some vapes that require more battery power because they simply do more. An E-CLIPSE for example, is going to use up more battery per use, on average, than a Micro Vape - the E-CLIPSE relies upon convection heating -- also known as “true vaporization” -- instead of combustion heating; this means that it doesn’t burn the dry herb and produce smoke, but it instead produces vapor that is then inhaled by the consumer. This process requires more battery power, so it is understandable why a convection-oven vape’s battery is not as long-lasting as that of a combustion-oven vape.

Some examples of battery capacity can be found below. Mah is the measure of vape batteries capacity, aka how much charge a battery can hold. The higher the Mah, typically, the longer the battery charger will last, however, keep in mind that some batteries will drain more quickly depending on the wattage output. It varies from box mod to box mod, and vape to vape, but box mods and dry herb vapes are typically over 1,000mah and much higher.

Oil Vape Stylus Pen Battery, Micro Vape, AGO JR, TItan 2, E-CLIPSE, AGO

vape cleaning brushes

Cleaning the Vape - Easy to Clean? Or not?

There is the general cleaning of vape parts, and more often than not, a dry herb vaporizer is easier to keep clean than a wax vape. Wax vape pens in general can be messy depending on how it is handled before and after usage.

For your dry herb vaporizer, a nice, wide heating chamber is easy to clear after each vape session but a small chamber can be a pain. The vape mouthpiece is typically easy to clean but make sure its not one of those super complicated ones.

glass globe vaporizer, Steamcloud mini vape for oil

Level of Portability - Size Matters

If you like vaping on the go, this is one of the most important aspects of your vape purchase that you should consider.

Vapes nowadays are super small but be remember you may be giving up some battery life with size - but not always, technology is great. That being said, if you’re on the market for a more high-quality vape, you also don’t want one that will resemble an early-’90s cell phone.

Depending on the substance that you plan to be vaping, there are several options from which you can choose. For the lovers of dry herb, the most compact -- it can fit inside a pack of cigarettes -- and yet also the most long-lasting vaporizer is likely to be the E-CLIPSE. However, for those on the market for wax or dry herb vapes, some of the best values and most compact options are likely to be the Micro Vape Pen or AGO JR, which could double as an oversized laser pointer. The Yocan Evolve Plus is a great option if you are looking for a higher quality.

dry herbs, wax, oils, milkman e liquid

What to Vape

The reason we didn’t include this one at the top of the list is because it’s so darn obvious. Your choice of dry herbs, wax, or oils to utilize in your vaporizer is one of the principal decisions that you’ll have to make when choosing your vape.

There are many vapes out there -- such as the Titan 2, the Stoner Joe Vaporizer, or the VT 1.0 -- that vape exclusively dry herbs. These vapes offer a tasty and often more reliable vaping experience.

Then there are other vapes that are most popular for vaping wax, but can also be equipped with other available chamber attachments for either oil or herb. These include the aforementioned Micro Vape pen, as well as Glass Globe vaporizers. Other examples include the AGO and the AGO Jr, which, while not as high-tech as the more advanced E-CLIPSE or Titan 2, offer a service to the all-round vaporizer aficionado.

The three varieties of the Yocan (the Pandon, the Evolve, and the Evolve Plus), are all designed for use with wax concentrates specifically. The Pandon will get you pretty close to a true dab.

dry herb vaporizer temperatures


Temperature Controls

For the more sophisticated fan of dry-herb vaping, a digital temperature control is a gift from god. The digital temperature control enables the user to customize their vaping experience by determining exactly which temperature at which they would like to vape - this means you can change the temperature up and down by a single degree, all on an easy to use and read screen. This is important because the level of heat applied to the dry herb is directly proportional to both how much vapor is produced and how long the dry herb contained in the chamber will last. Dry Herb Vaporizers like the E-CLIPSE, Stoner Joe, and the Titan 2 come equipped with this feature.

atomizers for wax, oils, herbs

Atomizer - Heating Chamber

The atomizer, also referred to as a coil or heating chamber, is the component part that is filled with either dry herb, wax, or oil. Usually, an atomizer for wax is for just wax, but, some chamber designs can be used for either herb or wax - just do not use them in the same chamber or it will get nasty quickly.

The wick coil has been the tried-and-true coil for the past several years. However, it is also the least flavorful of the coil options, oftentimes giving off a tainted taste.

From the wick came other coils, mostly targeted at delivering the most pure and flavorful hits. The ceramic coils were the first step up, but then came quartz rod coils which consumers often find to deliver the smoothest and most pure flavor during vaping. The quartz coil also typically does not need replacements as often as other coils do.

There is also another kind of coil, called a pancake coil. It is a spiral metal coil and has been around since the beginning like the wick coil. Still popular today, this ubiquitous little guy is able to vape dry herbs, wax, and on some occasions, oils.

And the space continues to develop and other options exist such as the ceramic donut coil, or the chambers with 3 or more rods. Atomizer attachments for vape pens, box mods and everything else will likely continue to develop because there is always room for improvement!

Thanks for reading! Are there other things that you look for when you’re purchasing a vaporizer? Let us know on social media. We’d love to hear from you!

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