Best dry herb vaporizer: everything you need to know and where to buy

WRITTEN by SY

 | Last revised

Dec, 2021

Are you looking for the best dry herb weed vape in Australia? You aren’t alone; the popularity of vaping has taken off in recent years, thanks in part to it being a healthier alternative to smoking.

In contrast to other inhalation methods, dry herb vapes offer users a more mellow experience, and the advanced technology generally provides a pleasant aromatic flavour instead of the harsh taste of a joint or bong.

If you’re a first-time vape buyer, the variety of models and technology available can seem overwhelming. In this guide, we explore everything from what a dry herb vape is, how to use it and the benefits, and we’ve reviewed some of the best models on the market today.

Whether you’re looking for the convenience of a portable device or the power of a desktop vape, this guide has you covered.

What is a dry herb vaporizer?

A dry herb vaporizer is a device that heats cannabis flower (dry herb) to the point where therapeutic compounds such as cannabidiol (CBD), tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and terpenes are activated and released as vapour.

The two main styles available are portable hand-held devices which are more convenient to take on the go. Then there’s the desktop vape which offers a more powerful and robust experience but isn’t easily transported.

weed vape australia

What are the benefits of using a dry herb vape?

In principle, a dry herb weed vaporizer offers the same advantages as other inhalation methods such as smoking, including direct delivery into the bloodstream via the lungs, rapid onset of effects, and easy titration.

But the most significant benefit of vaping dry herb is the ability to quickly absorb the medically active cannabinoids while avoiding toxic by-products of combustion.

When you smoke a joint, for example, you are literally burning the plant, and this, in turn, releases carcinogenic compounds known as polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). These hazardous chemicals can affect respiratory health and are even thought to be a significant factor in smoking-related cancers [1].

“While there’s no epidemiological evidence that marijuana smokers face a higher risk of smoking-related cancers, studies have found that they do face a higher risk of bronchitis and respiratory infections…This risk is not thought to be due to cannabinoids, but rather to extraneous by-products of pyrolysis in the smoke.”

While this consumption method offers distinct health advantages, it also comes with a few other positives.

Ease to use: Dry herb vaping is typically more straightforward than rolling a joint, using a bong or dabbing. Many dry herb vaporizers are either activated by the single push of a button or the act of inhaling and have easy-to-use pre-determined temperature settings.

Reduced Odour: While weed vaporizers are not entirely odourless, they produce significantly less odour than, say, smoking. The main reason for this is because your weed doesn’t burn due to the precise temperature and heating technology.

Less is More: Dry herb vaporizers produce more potent cannabinoid doses compared to smoking. Therefore, you’ll only need to use a small amount of dry herb to experience beneficial effects.

Better Flavour: Terpenes are heat-sensitive aromatic compounds that give weed its unique smell and flavour profile. Smoking weed often destroys many of these beneficial compounds, whereas vaping dry herb ensures they remain bioavailable.
Recent studies have even found that terpenes work synergistically with other cannabinoids to increase the potential healing effects by increasing the overall amount of cannabinoids that cross the blood-brain barrier [2].

australian vaporizers

Features of dry herb weed vapes in Australia

There are two main styles of dry herb vapes available in Australia, and we’ve broken down the key advantages and disadvantages of each option.

Desktop dry herb vaporizer Australia

Desktop dry herb vapes such as the Volcano offer powerful and precise technology that allows users to have a positive and easy experience. However, with more power comes more vapour and these units often hit hard with potency and quantity of vapour produced.

There are a few different ways you can inhale the vapour produced by this style of device:

• Balloon-bag vaping is where the vapour is captured in a bag and allowed to cool before inhalation; this is a good option for multiple people.

• Whip vaping is where you take a direct hit from the vape through a hose or tube.

This style of vape contains a large bowl and chamber with a powerful heating element for superior vapour production.

Desktop vaporizers are generally considered the preferred option, but they are bulky and require constant access to power.

Dry herb vaporizer pen Australia

Hand-held dry herb vapes are a convenient and more discreet method of consuming cannabis flower.

While they don’t offer the same amount of power as the desktop version, they have advantages such as being easily transportable and great for a quick and easy solo session.

When using a portable device, you remain close to the herb chamber, leaving a smaller chance of cannabinoids and terpenes dissipating before reaching your lungs.

Convection vs conduction heating: what are the differences?

How the vaporizer decarboxylates your flower makes all the difference.

A vaporizer with convection heating means that the flower is indirectly heated via hot air that moves through the ground-up flower, and as the user inhales, it produces vapour.

Convection is generally considered the preferred option for vaping dry herb or flower because it doesn’t cause combustion, leading to a cleaner, smoother experience, plus it helps preserve heat-sensitive terpenes.

A conduction vaporizer utilizes a battery to heat the coil, which then heats the bowl or chamber in which the flower is packed. Given the flower is in direct contact with a hot surface, it tends to heat up faster and get hotter, which carries a higher risk of combustion.

In saying all of this, conduction heating is generally easier to regulate than convection.

How do you use a dry herb vaporizer?

Using a dry herb vaporizer correctly can dramatically improve the experience, decrease the amount of flower used, and ensure your device is with you for the long run.

So, what are some things you need to know?

How to grind your flower

Grinding your weed is arguably the most important step to ensuring a good vape session.

Dry herb vaporizers don’t work well with big chunks of weed in their chambers, but nor should it be ground to a super fine powder as it can fall through the holes in the chamber, meaning you’ll need to clean it more frequently.

The easiest way to get a consistent grind is to invest in a weed grinder, taking the guesswork out of this step.

Weed needs to be a semi-fine consistency because it creates a larger surface area and can be heated more evenly, allowing the full range of terpenes and cannabinoids to be extracted in the vapour.

How do you pack a dry herb vaporizer correctly?

Packing your vaporizer correctly has the following advantages:
• More vapour
• Stronger vapour
• Smoother vapour

Packing the chamber so that it’s full and tight will often yield the best results.

It won’t be heated as evenly if the flower is loose, resulting in unsatisfactory vapour production and a harsh taste.

However, it’s important to note that it may also restrict airflow if you pack the chamber tightly with coarse flower.

There are exceptions to this rule, and some vaporizers are designed to work well with a looser pack. The Volcano is an excellent example of a dry herb vaporizer that perform best with a loosely packed chamber.

What is the right temperature setting for a dry herb vaporizer?

Heating cannabis to the correct temperature will ensure that the cannabinoids and terpenes are efficiently vaporized, delivering optimal therapeutic effects to your system.

The ideal temperature for vaporizing cannabis is between 157 – 200°C, depending on the results you’re trying to achieve.

However, cannabis researcher Dr Arno Hazekamp recommends 210°C as a universally beneficial temperature for vaping.

“In general, I would say 210°C is the best balance between efficient evaporation of terpenes and cannabinoids and smoothness of the vapour.”

It’s important to note that each cannabinoid has a unique heating point to extract maximum therapeutic potential.

The best dry herb vaporizers

So, what is the best dry herb vaporizer?

We’ve reviewed four weed vapes in Australia, including both desktop and hand-held devices.

Digital Hybrid Volcano Vaporizer By Storz & Bickel

Features:
• Dual-inhalation system
• 40 seconds heat up
• Bluetooth app control
• Hybrid heating system
• Powerful and precise

The Volcano is the OG of desktop dry herb vaporizers and has been on the market for over twenty years, and in that time, Storz & Bickel has mastered the dry herb vape game.

The Hybrid Volcano is the latest release and offers users precise temperature control ranging between 40°C and 230°C and a fast heating time of just 20-40 seconds.

Once The Volcano Hybrid has warmed up, you can either use the balloon and hit the air button or attach the tube and draw directly from it.

An interesting new feature of the Volcano Hybrid is the new stainless steel ring inside the chamber, which provides a small level of conductive heat that produces thicker vapour, fuller extraction, and a better flavour.

Mighty Vaporizer by Storz & Bickel

Features:
• Hybrid heating system
• Cooling unit that prevents hot or harsh vapour
• Digital display that shows both set and actual temperatures
• Can be operated from ios or android app.
• Can be used via a power adapter with completely discharged batteries

The Mighty Vaporizer is a battery-operated, hand-held device that features a hybrid convection and conduction heating system that ensures efficient and powerful vaporization.

The convection heating evenly extracts therapeutic botanical compounds from the flower, while conduction heating guarantees good quality vapour from the first draw.

One of the main reasons this vape is perfect for first-timer’s is because it’s so easy to operate. All you need to do is pack the chamber and turn it on, wait a few minutes for it to heat to your chosen temperature and then start drawing on the vape.

Pax 3 Vaporizer

Features:
• Precise Temperature Control
• Super-fast heating
• Can be used with both dry herb or oil

The Pax 3 is a versatile and sleek portable dry herb vape that boasts superior performance and battery life.

One of the most impressive features of the Pax 3 is that it heats the chamber in just 15 seconds and then vibrates when the set temperature has been reached.

However, one of the most exciting features of this vape is that it can be used with both dry herb and oil making it extremely versatile. The kit comes with a concentrate insert, enabling you to switch between the two options.

Arizer Air II Vaporizer

Features:
• Hybrid heating system
• Small and portable
• Borosilicate Glass Aroma Tubes

The Arizer Air II is perfect for first-timers, thanks to the no-fuss operation. It’s simple and easy to use without compromising on performance.

The hybrid conduction/convection system ensures rapid heating and also offers precise temperature control ranging between 50°C-220° C, which can be adjusted in increments of 1° C and 10° C.

The Air II features unique borosilicate glass aroma tubes that can withstand high temperatures while ensuring the superior flavours of the dry herb are not destroyed. Instead of packing flower into the chamber, it sits in the bottom of the glass aroma tube, which sits within the heating chamber.

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References

1. Christelle M. Andre,* Jean-Francois Hausman, and Gea Guerriero, "Cannabis sativa: The Plant of the Thousand and One Molecules".
NCBI: Frontiers in Plant Science.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4740396/.

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Disclaimer. While we strive to relay the most factual education available, this shouldn’t replace official medical or legal consultation and recommendation. This is for educational and entertainment purposes only. Happy days.

Hinterland co. Byron Bay, Australia

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