The $670 Volcano has been the undisputed king of vaporizers for a long time. But it hasn't evolved much, and its ultra-high price hasn't come down much, either. Can the Arizer Extreme Q fill in for the Cadillac on a Chevy budget?
What Is It?
A super versatile vaporizer used for "aromatherapy." Some people use it for the "aroma" of cannabis vapor in their lungs, as it's a much healthier alternative to smoking said greenery.
Who's it For?
Smokers tired of burning their throats and lungs.
Actually rather handsome: a tapered cylinder that sits on a glowing plate. Up front, a digital display shows the desired and actual temperatures. There's a bag attachment, a piece of tubing (aka a whip), and a large bowl (for herbs).
Add your herbals to the main bowl and put that onto the ceramic heating element. Then you put the put the bag attachment on top of that, attach the bag and turn it on. When the element reaches your desired temp, turn on the fan, inflate the bag, and you're off and running.
The Best Part
Versatility. Inflating a bag will get you the lowest-temperature vapor, and it's great for sharing. But sometimes you don't want to deal with the hassle of inflating a big bag—then, you can use the whip.
A hell of a lot of little glass pieces. They're pretty easy to break, they make the device complicated, and you have to wedge the bag's glass piece into a plastic tube—a very tight fit.
This Is Weird...
There's a remote control you can use to set the temperature and fan speed without leaving the couch. But you still need to get up to inhale.
- It gets up to temp quickly then maintains it very steadily.
- Two of the glass pieces broke early on. However it comes with a 3-year warranty and Arizer replaced the parts extremely quickly.
- While the Volcano has a very convenient valve that lets you easily pass a bag around, the Extreme Q requires you to hold your finger over the hole on the glass piece. Not a deal-breaker, but decidedly less user-friendly.
- This thing has a heavy power brick that goes to a three-prong plug. Serious business.
- It comes with a ton of accessories and attachments: Remote control, two balloons, a three foot whip, two mouthpieces, a potpourri dish, two cyclone bowls, a very classy glass stirring tool, and extra screens.
- You can get a battery pack for this thing, in case you want to take it camping. (It costs $100.)
- The fan is crazy quiet. Even on the highest setting, you can barely hear it.
- The ability to precisely tweak the temperature a little at a time will get you the exact consistency you're looking for in your vapor. If used correctly, it can also make what you're burning last longer per bowl.
- Reaches your set temperature much faster than the Volcano (roughly 30 seconds vs. 3 minutes). However, the Volcano fills the bag much faster than the Extreme Q (roughly 30 seconds to 90 seconds). It generally evens out.
Should You Buy It?
Yes. While it lacks some of the polish of the Volcano, it has way more features and it delivers the same, high-quality vapor. And it's less than 1/3 the price of the entry-level Volcano (and almost 1/4 the price of the one with the digital read-out). At $160, it's cheap enough to get a lot more people on the healthier, high-techier vaporizer train. [$160 on Amazon]