Here’s a guide to the best desktop vaporizers you can buy in 2017.
Desktop vaporizers boast the highest quality vapor around. Unlike portable vaporizers, desktop vaporizers are plugged into a power outlet. This makes them stationary, but also much more powerful.
The plug-in power source enables desktop vaporizers to create more vapor than portable devices. This makes them a popular choice for medicinal users and vape enthusiasts alike who prefer cleaner, more flavorful hits from the comfort of their own home.
Desktop vaporizers are generally more expensive than portable vaporizers and vape pens, but the payoff is worth it. You get to vape anytime — without charging — and enjoy truly delicious and pure vapor.
While desktop vaporizers vary greatly in price, the best models exist in the price range of $150 and up. For those seeking an affordable option, we’ve also included the best desktop vaporizer under $100 in our list.
Choosing A Desktop Vaporizer
With so much choice available, you might be wondering how to select the right desktop vaporizer. There are many things to consider, but the most important factors remain vapor production, functionality, and build quality.
When deciding on the best vaporizer to suit your needs, you should keep these factors in mind.
Vapor quality ultimately boils down to the heating system — conduction or convection.
Desktop vaporizers generally feature convection heating systems, which use hot air to warm the herb. Convection heating is considered superior, and it’s more efficient because it doesn’t burn dry herb at all, preventing any smokiness or harsh hits.
This is why desktop vaporizers are able to deliver smoother vapor that preserves the essential flavors and aromas of the dry herb.
The best desktop vaporizers also feature precision temperature control. This enables users to pinpoint their ideal temperature, rather than choosing from a few preset temperatures.
You can pick the best temperature for releasing cannabinoids from a specific strain, as well as customize your vapor production, whether you enjoy smaller, flavor-intensive hits, larger clouds, or anything in-between.
The best desktop vaporizers are easy to use, and offer versatility in how you inhale the vapor.
Desktop vaporizers typically offer 3 different methods for inhaling vapor. Some vaporizers feature one method, while others feature all of them. Each style has its own perks.
- Whip-style vaporizers extend the vapor path with a long silicone tube to cool it off before it reaches your palate.
- Balloon bag vaporizers give you a bag of vapor to freely carry away from the desktop vaporizer once it is filled. Balloons also cool off the vapor, similar to a whip.
- Steamroller vaporizers use a glass bubbler to add moisture and cleanse the vapor through water filtration.
The best desktop vaporizers are versatile enough to allow for all three methods. But of course, if you’re happy with only one of these styles, then there’s no need to go with a triple purpose vaporizer, since they’re often more expensive.
When it comes to choosing a desktop vaporizer, quality matters. It secures your investment so you know the device will last long and perform well for many years to come.
The best desktop vaporizers in our list have a high quality heating element and vapor path. For instance, the Silver Surfer vaporizer features a lab-tested ceramic heating element with a long life and excellent conductivity.
You also want a high quality encasement made of strong, low-conductivity materials that won’t get hot when your vaporizer is running. The Volcano Digital vaporizer, for example, boasts sturdy German engineering and durable materials that will last a lifetime.
The Best Desktop Vaporizers of 2017
Herbalizer – $599.99
The Herbalizer is without a doubt the best desktop vaporizer yet. The brainchild of NASA engineers, the Herbalizer uses a microprocessor to deliver functionality that’s light years ahead of most other vapes.
A halogen bulb cleanly vaporizes dry herb or concentrate with hot air convection, reaching temperatures as high as 380F in just five seconds. If the lamp misses the designated temperature by just a degree, the Herbalizer microprocessor will correct the deviation in a fraction of a second.
The Herbalizer also features a fail-safe mechanism that shuts the unit off if it’s tipped or takes a spill. And even better, the microprocessor will remember the last temperature that was used so you can proceed with your vaping session with minimal interruption.
The Herbalizer is also incredibly versatile. A forced air system pushes vapor out to give you some help when inhaling, but this feature can be shut off if you prefer more draw resistance.
This vaporizer offers all three inhalation styles (with a glass steamroller attachment sold separately). You can also choose from a temperature range of 290F to 445F with an easy-to-use digital interface.
With the Herbalizer, you’ll enjoy what’s arguably the best vaporizing experience in the world from the best desktop vaporizer that money can buy.
Volcano Digital – $500.00
There’s a reason the Volcano vaporizer has remained one of the most purchased and best reviewed desktop vaporizers for over a decade.
With German engineering, a functional yet fun classic cone design, and a powerful convection heating system, the Volcano Digital is one of the best desktop vaporizers ever created.
An updated version of the Volcano Classic, the Volcano Digital features an LED display so you can easily choose a temperature between 104F and 446F using simple “up” and “down” buttons. The display will show you the temperature you’ve requested, and the temperature that the Volcano Digital is currently at.
Straight out of the box, you can tell the Volcano Digital is the product of excellent craftsmanship and high quality materials. The polished steel housing, ceramic heating element, and balloon-bag valve are all durable and dependable, and you can taste this quality in the vapor.
Delivering immensely flavorful and smooth vapor, the Volcano is popular with dry herb enthusiasts and medical users alike.
Unlike conduction-style vaporizers, the Volcano vaporizer uses a convection heating system, sending hot air flowing through the air chamber to vaporize the herb. The best desktop vaporizers are convection units. That’s because they produce the cleanest, tastiest possible vapor. And the Volcano Digital has one the most impressive convection systems on the market.
When it comes to vapor delivery, the Volcano offers a balloon bag system with two valve options — an Easy Valve with a new balloon and mouthpiece already attached, and the more traditional Solid Valve which requires you to replace the balloon manually. Once filled, the Volcano balloon bag will preserve vapor for up to 8 hours, and only needs replacing after approximately 100 uses.
The Volcano Digital has remained one of the best desktop vaporizers for the past ten years by virtue of its excellent build, easy operation, and remarkable vapor quality.
Vapolution 3 – $299.99
Vapolution has been around for a while, and they’ve only gotten better with the release of the Vapolution 3.
The Vapolution 3 is one of the few vaporizers that contains a 100% glass airpath, which helps it deliver incredibly flavorful vapor. The unit itself has a solid build that’s relatively compact for a desktop vaporizer. The controls are also well-designed and easy to manage.
While the Vapolution 3 isn’t the most elegant looking vaporizer, the vapor production is truly impressive, earning it a spot on our list of this year’s best desktop vaporizers.
While keeping the temperature around 400F, the Vapolution 3 produces hits that are smooth, easy, and comfortable to inhale. You can draw through the included silicone whip, or those looking for “true vaporization” with an all-glass vapor path can choose from the included glass stem or the V3 Hydrotube bubbler (sold separately).
The Vapolution 3 also has some nifty features like stealth mode, which dims the screen for a more discreet experience. And the unit allows you to change from Celsius to Fahrenheit with ease.
The simple yet full-featured usability, coupled with an all-glass vapor path and immensely flavorful draws make the Vapolution 3 one of our favorite desktop models of the year.
Silver Surfer by 7th Floor – $269.99
Protected by a 3-year warranty — a testament to its quality — the Silver Surfer Vaporizer by 7th Floor is one of the most well-crafted desktop vaporizers on the market.
With the Silver Surfer, 7th Floor didn’t revolutionize the desktop vaporizer. Rather, they smoothed out little flaws often found in desktop models, and perfected their best features. The result is one of the best desktop vaporizers in terms of vapor production, build quality, and functionality.
The first thing you’ll notice about the Silver Surfer vape is the trademark 7th Floor tilt. The column-shaped heater cover of the Silver Surfer vaporizer is tilted 45 degrees, giving it a sleek, aerodynamic look.
In reality, the tilting is more about function than fashion. It prevents the herb from spilling when connecting the wand, since you can keep the bowl upward instead of tilting it as you would with other desktop vaporizers.
The heater cover is also phenomenal in quality, and is made of durable anodized metal that’s solid yet lightweight. The base of the Silver Surfer is sturdy so the device doesn’t tip or rock at all. This model is one of the best desktop vaporizers by virtue of its build quality alone.
But the vapor production of the Silver Surfer may be its most impressive attribute. Featuring a rare glass-on-glass vapor path that preserves flavor and aromas with low conductivity, the Silver Surfer by 7th Floor produces extremely flavorful and pure vapor.
7th Floor also takes care to include a custom hand-blown glass knob that is different on every Silver Surfer vaporizer. This beautifully crafted, solidly performing vaporizer earned a place on this list by doing the essentials incredibly well.
Plenty Vaporizer – $249.99
Made by the same company that makes the Volcano, the Plenty by Storz and Bickel is a desktop vaporizer like no other.
The Plenty features a visual temperature dial, a tactical design that resembles something you’d pick up at Home Depot, and a stainless steel cooling coil that stays in whatever shape you bend it into and through which you draw the vapor.
It’s also one of the few desktop vaporizers that plugs in to a power outlet but is also handheld, allowing you to move more freely. The Plenty vaporizer is great for those who are serious about vaping, and it’s good for both dry herb and wax concentrates.
Made with precision German engineering, the Plenty vaporizer is protected by a reassuring 3-year warranty. You can feel the build quality when you handle the Plenty. The high grade plastic is tightly fitted, with no loose pieces, and they’re easy to disassemble for regular cleaning.
The Plenty is also super easy to use. Just turn the orange dial, then pull the trigger until the thermometer indicates your vaping temperature has been reached.
In terms of design and usability, the Plenty vaporizer looks wild on the outside but offers incredible ease-of-use, build quality, and vapor production — which leads us to the heating system.
What makes the Plenty vaporizer one of the best desktop vaporizers of the year is its convection heating system, which warms up your herb with hot air rather than a hot surface. The herb chamber is also sizeable, offering lots of surface area for the hot air to cover.
Besides being compatible with dry herb, the Plenty features a concentrate pad, making it possible to vape liquid concentrates and e-liquids as well. The draw resistance of the Plenty is light, and it produces thick, smooth and flavorful vapor. The Plenty is the best desktop vaporizer for handheld use that’s still a powerful plug-in unit.
Vapir Rise – $249.99
The Vapir Rise was designed to offer a more affordable alternative to the coveted Volcano vaporizer. And as far as vapor production goes, the Vapir Rise gets the job done.
It removes irritants from vapor using a HEPA air filter that’s part of a forced air system that assists you in taking hits. The resulting vapor is very clean-tasting and comfortable to hit.
Since the Vapir Rise is one of the few desktop vaporizers to offer HEPA filtration, it stands out as a mid-range unit that behaves like an expensive one.
Another reason why the Vapir Rise made our list is because of its versatility. You can vape in three styles: balloon, single whip, or multi-user whip, which comes in handy at parties when you want to share with your friends.
The Vapir Rise is one of the only vaporizers that allows more than one user to hit the vape at once. But to enable multi-user mode, you’ll need an adapter that’s sold separately.
Perhaps the most outstanding aspect of the Vapir Rise is its usability. A simple touch pad lets you toggle the temperature and fan speed with ease.
This model also features precision temperature control. Users can pick their ideal temperature down to the degree, all the way up to 420F. The Vapir Rise rises to the occasion in just 90 seconds.
For all these reasons and more, the Vapir Rise is a great option for those looking for a mid-range desktop vaporizer.
Arizer Extreme Q – $199.99
The Arizer Extreme Q is a relatively affordable desktop vaporizer that offers decent vapor production, intuitive controls, and a forced air system for bigger and easier hits.
Along with the main unit, you get a full kit of glass pieces — from wands to joints to a stir pick. The Extreme Q boasts precision temperature control, and comes with a remote control for toggling temperature and fan settings as easily as you would change the channel on your TV.
The Arizer Extreme Q also features a forced-air fan that assists your draws by pushing vapor through the tube at three different speeds. The fan does a wonderful job of making the hits bigger and easier to take, and on the lowest setting there’s still enough draw resistance to please traditionalists. Turning the forced-air fan on while you’re drawing from the whip will create a bigger cloud of vapor.
The Extreme Q is a dual method vaporizer, meaning you can vaporize with a tube (whip-style) or with a balloon bag.
The whip is comprised of food and medical-grade silicone and solid borosilicate glass, helping the vapor cool off before reaching your lungs. When the forced air system is set on high, you can fill a balloon bag in under 90 seconds. Unfortunately, the Extreme Q balloon bags lack valves, so you have to keep your finger on the mouthpiece to keep the vapor from seeping out.
Overall, the Arizer Extreme Q does much of what more expensive desktop vaporizers do, but at a much lower price point. It’s a formidable unit, and one of the best desktop vaporizers within its price range.
Life Saber by 7th Floor – $179.99
The Life Saber is a really unique vaporizer. The first thing you’ll notice is that it’s shaped like a Star Wars lightsaber. And like the Plenty vaporizer, it’s one of the only desktop vaporizers that is handheld.
The Life Saber vaporizer is the best of both worlds. You get extra power for the heating system from the plug-in source, as well as more mobility than a stationary unit.
What sets the Life Saber apart — besides its lightweight, handheld design — is its vapor production, which is bolstered by 7th Floor’s trademark hand-blown borosilicate glass pieces.
The Life Saber features an all-glass vapor path, from the heating chamber down to the long glass-stem straw from which you draw the vapor. The heating element is encased in borosilicate glass, which harnesses heat without tarnishing the flavor of the vapor like metal or plastic sometimes can. One minor drawback is that you’ll need to stir the bowl during your session.
The Life Saber is very simple to use — to heat it up, simply turn the knob to your preferred temperature. The Life Saber is technically a precision vaporizer, but without a digital display, it’s hard to tell what temperature you’re vaping at. So there may be a learning curve at first.
With most vapes, you have to take a few small hits before the unit starts producing bigger hits. But the Life Saber delivers full-fledged draws from the first hit, placing it a step ahead of other desktop models.
Overall, the Life Saber is a unique desktop vaporizer that offers mobility and high-powered vapor production for a low price.
Easy Vape Digital – $79.99
We wanted to include an affordable option on our list, mostly because beginners and those on a budget need something cheaper that still performs well. The Easy Vape is the best desktop vaporizer under $100.
Naturally, the Easy Vape is not as great as pricier models. But it does the essentials well enough to set it apart from other desktop vaporizers in its price range.
The Easy Vape features a hands-free wand connection so you don’t have to hold the whip to keep it attached to the unit. And the silicone whip does a good job of cooling down the vapor.
The Easy Vape offers precision temperature control, which is toggled using a metal dial and digital LED display. The heat up time is fairly fast, taking only about 1 minute.
Herb is loaded into a wand attachment, and you’ll need to lift the Easy Vape up and tip it forward when attaching the wand to avoid spilling dry herb from the bowl. But other than this, the Easy Vape is a functional, easy-to-use, and satisfying vaporizer.
Overall, the Easy Vape is the little desktop vaporizer that can. It’s powerful and potent for a cheaper unit, making it the ideal choice for those not looking to break the bank to own one of the best desktop vaporizers of 2017.
The Bottom Line
So what’s the take-home message from our list of the best desktop vaporizers of 2017?
If you want the best desktop vaporizer in terms of vapor production, functionality, and build quality, go for the Herbalizer or the Volcano Digital. Both are premium, high-performance models with lots to offer.
If you want something a little more economical that still packs a strong punch, go with one of the mid-range models from our list such as the Vapolution, the Silver Surfer, the Plenty, or the Vapir Rise.
And for something cheaper that still gets the job done, check out the Arizer Extreme Q, the Life Saber, or the best desktop vaporizer under $100, the Easy Vape.
Regardless of which model you choose, a desktop vaporizer is a great investment. The reliability, functionality, and superior heating systems of desktop vaporizers make them a great choice for anyone who wants to enjoy vaping in the comfort of their own home.