NO2: Cut the Cords and Get Portable

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The Vapir is like many other small vaporizers, with one key difference: it's powered by a rechargeable battery, allowing you to bring it with you anywhere.

It's a neat trick. Most vaporizers require you to keep the thing plugged in to power their electron-hungry coils. A monster machine like the Volcano could probably never go wireless, but a smaller unit like the Vapir does quite well.

Heating up the coils does use up a good deal of juice, but you're able to get a good 4-5 full uses out of it between charges. And you can use it while it's plugged in and charging as well, which is nice.

It's a pretty basic setup: select your temperature in either Fahrenheit or Celsius, wait a minute for it to heat up, fill it with your vaporizables, pop on the mouthpiece and go to town.

And it works pretty well! I set the temperature at 380°, hit the heat button, and watched as the temp shot up 300° in about 90 seconds. I then filled it with my desired vaporizing substance and popped the top piece (with rubber hose and mouthpiece) on. The temperature would sometimes dip down a few degrees and then heat itself back up, but it stayed within 7 or 8 degrees of my set temperature the entire time it was running. The digital readout is also very accurate—I used an IR thermometer to confirm that the Vapir's readout showed the exact temperature when it was both cool and running hot.

The vapor it produces is smooth and flavorful, exactly as advertised. There's no real discernible difference between the vapor from the Vapir and the vapor from the Volcano, at least that I could notice. The temperature is presumably more stable with the Volcano, but I'm not sure how big a deal that is. Perhaps the subtleties are best left to the connoisseurs.

Where the Vapir does fall to the Volcano is in how you pack it. With the Volcano, there's a screened top piece that you fill and can place on or remove from the heating element whenever you want. This allows you to pack it, wait for the unit to come to temperature, pop it on to fill the bag and then remove. It helps keep you from wasting materials, as it's only sitting on the heating element when it's being used.

With the Vapir, there's a pit at the top for you to put your vaporizables in. In order to empty it, you need to tip the whole unit over and bang on the back or dig it out with a pen or a nail. Not only is this kind of a pain, but it makes it much harder to use the unit as the instructions dictate. You're not supposed to fill it until it's fully heated, but with the high efficiency of this thing, the chances are good that you'll only vaporize part of what you pack and will want to leave some for later. Rather than being able to just pop off that top piece, you need to reheat it while it warms up again or dig your materials out in between every session.

That's more of a minor inconvenience than a dealbreaker. Sure, it does hurt the efficiency of the unit, but it's still wildly more efficient than smoking. And at $179, it's a fraction of the price of a Volcano, which can run you upwards of $700.

And hell, you can't take a Volcano on a picnic, now can you?

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