For some, vaporizers are a heaven sent way to get off cigarettes while still smoking — all via technology. To others, they’re another curse delivered onto us via hipsters — taking the iconic, badass look of smoking and burying it under nerdy gizmos.
Whatever camp you’re in, it doesn’t really matter much because vaporizers are here to stay. They’ve evolved past tools used to ween smokers off of cigarettes to a preferred method of enjoying tobacco or whatever else can be distilled into fuel for vaping. Since they burn cleaner than cigarettes, pipes or cigars, they’re less offensive that any of the above and fit more cleanly into our scrubbed, squeaky clean world of 24/7, bubble-wrapped technological niceness.
Seeing a potential market of young, gadget-minded smokers who want to be healthier without giving up their favorite vice, manufacturers continue to jump into the vape world. That forges a market of devices varying in capability and price for different consumer levels.
Below you’ll find a collection of some of the better mass market vaporizers with distinct design aesthetics and a variety of MSRPs.
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Pax Premium: The Pax (top) offers an elegant and compact design. For $199, the buyer gets a device about the size of a large thumb drive, a stick of lip balm or a key fob. It uses loose tobacco (or whatever) and filtration system to produce the clean, scent free vapor. It heats fully within 30 seconds from a fully rechargeable battery.
Its use of leaf tobacco endeared this Vape to me as I still cling to a pipe and cigars for my smoke rings. For the vapor looking for the smaller device that can used less conspicuously, the Pax puffs away nicely.
Vapexhale Cloud Evo: If there’s a Cadillac of a Vaporizer, it might be this Evo. An amalgamation of a black capsule, glass tubes, bowls and cartridges, the Evo employs a Load Bowl filled with “our favorite herbs” inserted into a male glass joint at the top of the unit — with a HydraTube used for installation.
You pay for all of that multi-functionality. The Evo on its own runs $450, while the Vapexhale Hydra Honeycomb Starter Kit can run northward to $800. That kit includes the VapeXhale Cloud EVO, the VapeXhale HydraHoneyComb Hydratube, the VapeXNail Essential Oil Attachment, two EZ Load Bowls and one Heat Shield. All totaled, the Evo and its accessories are for the most serious, devoted vape lover.
Kandy Pen K-Vape: While Kandy Pens opt for a more playful name and whimsical packaging, the $119.95 K-Vape is every bit a serious contender amongst the Vaporizers. About the length of your average magic marker, the K-Vape is another dry herbal vaporizer. It has three non-combustion temperatures (360 F, 380 F and 420 F) and a five minute Auto-Shutoff Feature. The user also get replacement mouth pieces and a mini-USB charging cable.
The entire setup is simple, quick and significantly less expensive than other top options in the category.
Kandy Pen Black Edition: At only $99.95, this Black Edition of the Kandy Pen offers all of the features of the standard K-Vape with a little more sophisticated styling. The unit comes in a special gift box with a membership card that proves how much cooler you are with your black, metallic, shiny new vape.
Vapium Summit: At $149.99, the Summit looks every bit like a flash drive and will hide in the palm of your hand. Of all the vaporizers tested here, this Summit seemed like the device most carefully designed for durability. It’s a tiny, smoking tank with textured grips and a minimum of vulnerable parts. And, it seems designed for hidden use with its tiny size and quiet vibrations that let you know when it’s ready to smoke without making a sound.