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The Best Vapes for Every Kind of Cannabis Vaper

How to pick the perfect vaporizer for every smoking style.

Design by Maitane Romagosa for Thrillist
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To say the act of vaporizing weed has become a nuanced realm would be a massive understatement. There’s the oil-filled cartridges sold at gas station CBD stands and legal dispensaries; those rows and rows of what look like little honey vials. Then there’s the handheld and stand-alone innovations in vaporizing machines—the devices made to heat cannabis flower without burning it, eliminating the harmful carcinogens that come with igniting flower with fire.

Beyond respiratory wellbeing, these vapes are getting pretty damn dynamic, with many brands in their second or third iteration of flagship designs. We’re seeing technological-medical-magic in the making before our eyes, and there’s truly something for everyone.

Design by Maitane Romagosa for Thrillist

For the Old School Stoner

G Pen Dash Vaporizer
Price: $89.95

I am a flower girl; I understand the hesitation with the new mechanical world. But when it comes to a low-maintenance, compact, physically small vaporizer that operates with the quality of a device much larger, the Dash is the perfect transition piece for glass/joint diehards to incorporate vaping into their lives. It’s lightweight, while still containing a glass glazed stainless steel heating chamber that hits three temperature settings (375Âş F, 401Âş F and 428Âş F). No bells; no whistles; just a great flower vaporizer for anywhere. 

Design by Maitane Romagosa for Thrillist

For the Techie Perfectionist

DaVinci IQ2 Vaporizer
Price: $295
Medical grade components, from the all-ceramic air path to the glass-lined oven. Dual use for concentrates and flower. The latest from high-tech and high design brand DaVinci really takes custom controls to a whole new level (and they backed it up with a ten year warranty to boot). Not only can you customize temperature, but you can customize the actual air flow and adjust for easier draws or bigger, denser vapor. You can input the potency percentage of your strain and the amount of herb or extracts, and your IQ2 will track and report the actual dose of cannabinoids per draw and per session. 

Design by Maitane Romagosa for Thrillist

For the Android User

Firefly 2+
Price: $249.95
You know the one. The edgelord friend who's never one to follow the trends. Absolutely zero judgment here—I owned a Microsoft Zune instead of an iPod for years. Firefly has been the Android to PAX for years, and while the latter invested in the cartridge form, Firefly stayed the course to create the best version of their unique devices, which use a distinct heating mechanism to fluctuate the temperature throughout your draw. They prioritized the perfect draw itself, refining the volume and pull of the inhale over the different models. It also cools down super fast—a major perk for everyone who’s burned their lip on a scalding mouthpiece before.

Design by Maitane Romagosa for Thrillist

For the Lifetime Vaper

Volcano Classic
Price: $479
There’s a big price jump with this one, but that’s because this has remained the ultimate standalone flower vaporizer for over 20 years. This is the one where the bag fills up with vapor, and you sip your hits as you like off the bag. Like a cordless hookah. The controls are simple and straightforward, and there is not a smoother hit out there. If you choose to invest in a trusty Volcano, you can rest assured it will probably be the last vape you ever buy. And if you’ve got a warmer vibe of decor in your living room, they dropped a 24k gold-plated version of the classic.

Design by Maitane Romagosa for Thrillist

For the Cartridge Crowd

G Pen Gio
Price: 
$15.96
PAX Era Life
Price: 
$35
I get it, the thought of dealing with loose concentrates is intimidating! There’s nothing wrong with enjoying the ease of the classic, 510 thread vape cartridges you buy at dispensaries or CBD stores. But that’s not the end of your options, either. PAX makes their uniquely sized version of a reusable, rechargeable vape pen that can be used with PAX Era Life cartridges available in many legal states, often with many of the state’s best and brightest cultivators. G Pen has a similar thing going with their Gio vape pen, designed for exclusive use with Gio cartridges, which are broadly available. These models will be built better, with less risk of the operational errors that come with the average reusable batteries sold next to cartridges in dispensaries.

Design by Maitane Romagosa for Thrillist

For People Who Love Cartridges But Want Flower

Omura Series X
Price: $99.99
When I visited Japan a couple years ago, I saw people placing their cigarettes into small handheld vaporizers to basically vape cigs indoors. This is that same concept, but instead of having to roll an entire joint to vape it, Omura constructed little tubes for filling with fresh ground flower. The entire device is very compact, very chic, and still uses the same heat-not-burn technology that vaporizes flower without producing carcinogens, all designed by award winning industrial designer Michael Young. For people who aren’t into the messiness of filling and cleaning the oven inside your vape, this efficient, cartridge-like experience may possess a certain appeal.

Design by Maitane Romagosa for Thrillist

For the Dab Connoisseur

Boost EVO by Dr. Dabber
Price: $329.95
It may not be shocking to hear Dr. Dabber takes dabs very seriously. This is like the Volcano of concentrate vaporizers. It’s got capacity for six temperature settings from 500-750° F, a quartz bowl with seamless flow to the glass mouthpiece, impressive battery life—a request often brought up in the feedback from tens of thousands of customers that informed this latest redesign—plus very slick ambient lighting details along the sides.

Lauren Yoshiko is a Portland-based writer and co-host of Broccoli Magazine's podcast, Broccoli Talk. She was among the first journalists to cover the commerce and culture of cannabis starting in 2014 and her work has since appeared in Willamette WeekForbesRolling Stone, and Broccoli Magazine, among others. Follow her on Instagram at @laurenyoshiko for Portland breakfast sandwich recs, stoned nail art, and moderate cat content.
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