Among consumer trends, it’s difficult to point out any other industry that has seen the same magnitude of growth as vaporizers and enthusiast e-devices. Starting off as a humble niche market, vaping has exploded into a multi-billion dollar enterprise. The present day’s creative synergy resulted in a number of vape innovations that are enjoyed worldwide. Today, I’m going to review a Desktop Vaporizer that I think is just amazing. Then again, all these new dry herb, wax/oil vaporizers have been giving me a great deal of pleasure since I began studying them back in January (in order to bring our readers a new category of vaporizers and vaping), so this is only the 4th or 5th Desktop Vaporizer I’ve used and studied.
However, if truth be told, many, if not most of the innovations have focused on the portable vaporizer front. That’s largely to be expected given the ability for portable vapes to be showcased across various mediums. But as enthusiasts grow into the art of chasing vape, they realize that there’s no “replacement for displacement.”
While wax pens and portable vaporizers are uber-convenient, nothing can match the raw power and broad functionality of the desktop e-rig. Given the comparatively extensive dimensions and the desktop’s DC-connected power source, connoisseurs like you and me, can enjoy clouds of vapor to a scale that is unrealizable in a physically-smaller platform.
In this segment of the industry, vape lovers and industry critics all rave about Arizer. Having forged a reputation for producing some of the best e-devices in the market, the renowned manufacturer dived into the e-rig world with the Arizer Extreme Q Desktop Vaporizer. Featuring balloon bag and whip-attachment functionality, a wide temperature spectrum (122°F to 500°F), and dual voltage (110V and 220V), the Extreme Q is quite a powerhouse.
The most obvious target for the Arizer Extreme is Storz & Bickel’s iconic Volcano vaporizers. But at a price point under $200, can Arizer compete with the elite manufacturer?
An Extreme Challenge
Indeed, one of the barriers to entry for consumers is the elevated price tag of desktops as compared to portable vaporizers. This dynamic only drives more market share to the portable format, further exacerbating the aforementioned situation. Seeing an opportunity, Arizer offered a reasonably-priced e-rig that delivers many of the same functions and experiences in premium desktops.
The challenge, of course, is that the Storz & Bickel Volcano series is widely considered the gold standard among e-rigs. Being compared to the best product in the category leads inevitably to hard questions – does the performance stack up? Is the vapor quality similar? Not too many products can stand the heat of excessive inquiry.
Still, this is Arizer that we’re talking about, and their primary claim to fame is their superior vape flavor and their excellent craftsmanship. If any manufacturer is going to chip away at Storz & Bickel’s market share, my money is on Arizer. Most importantly, the Extreme Q Desktop Vaporizer hits at an undeniably attractive entry point.
Arizer lists its MSRP at a penny under $200. For the U.S. market, it’s not at all unusual to see the Extreme Q offered at $20 or $30 below the manufacturer’s recommendation. On the other hand, the Volcano Classic is offered near $400 territory, while the upgraded Volcano Digital line comes in around $500.
Even for some hardened vape connoisseurs, these top-of-the-line products are difficult to justify. But the other perspective is that vapers passionate about their art don’t want to lose quality. Thus, it’s not just a matter of price, but instead, a value proposition.
To that end, the Arizer Extreme Q Desktop Vaporizer Kit offers an array of user-friendly options. Aside from its dual functionality (balloon and whip), the Q includes two glass cyclone bowls, a glass aromatherapy dish with aromatic sample, components for both balloon and whip-style vaping, and a remote control for ultra-convenient enjoyment.
Will the Arizer brand-name reputation and an assortment of goodies be enough to take on the Volcano series? Read on to find out!
Arizer Extreme Q First Impressions
I’m mostly familiar with Arizer’s excellent line of portable vaporizers; in particular, the award-winning Solo II Vaporizer. The Solo produced impressively flavorsome vapors, easy-flowing draws, and robust cloud emittance (with the right temperature settings), all in a compact format. Therefore, I was really looking forward to what Arizer could do with all its horses unleashed.
Right from the get-go, you can tell that their engineers spent extra care with the Extreme Q Desktop Vaporizer. The e-rig’s main casing is constructed out of high-grade stainless steel, which evokes a classic sheen and feels exceptionally sturdy. At the same time, I appreciate the fact that the overall package isn’t burdensome, weighing in at four pounds.
Furthermore, the design of the Arizer Extreme Q Desktop Vaporizer is unassuming. In my opinion, it has a bit more pizzazz than either the Volcano Classic or Digital – thanks to elements such as the bezeled LCD interface — but maintains a classy, discreet profile. Of course, discretion is not necessarily a top priority for a home-use e-rig, but I tend to go for a clean, “professional” look. Those vapers that share my styling tastes will likely appreciate the Extreme Q as well.
Arizer has gone through multiple revisions with their flagship desktop over the past few years. This review focuses on the latest version, which features many subtle and not-so-subtle improvements. The most noticeable upgrade is that quieter and more efficient fan system. Prior iterations of the Extreme Q sounded as if you were running a lawnmower in your room! Now, the Q operates at a much more reasonable decibel level, approximately half to three-quarters noise reduction.
Another great enhancement is noticed within the internal composition. Arizer engineers upgraded the circuitry for the Extreme Q. Prior generation models suffered the occasional malfunction and frustrating operational lagging, or latency. Now, the Q is more responsive than it’s ever been, and is less prone to annoying errors. Finally, a new ceramic heating element is incorporated into the Extreme Q, further improving an already outstanding vaping experience.
Although the Q wins high marks on performance and functionality, not everything is spot-on perfect. One of the drawbacks for the desktop is the practicality of the balloon-bag setup. Arizer provides all the tools you need to setup the balloon and attach it to the Extreme Q Desktop. Unfortunately, many enthusiasts will find it a cumbersome process. Some might elect not to use this function, thus taking away the major selling point of dual functionality.
I’m not sure if it’s a deal-breaker, but it’s worth considering. For one thing, other vapers may not experience any trouble with the process. Also, in the broader context, the balloon process is a minor setback. Anyone who enjoys the rich essence of desktop vaping will recognize the Arizer Extreme Q Vaporizer’s value for the money.
Vaping to the Extreme!
Arizer products are known the world over, and it’s mainly for one big reason – vapor quality. No matter how much money you pay or through what platform you vape, everyone expects a certain standard from the Arizer brand name. Fortunately, the Extreme Q doesn’t let us down.
Irrespective of which methodology you choose, the Extreme Q Desktop Vaporizer facilitates exceptionally smooth draws, especially compared to any portable format. Vapor texture is also incredibly consistent – this is an attribute that wax-pen vapers will notice straight away. Indeed, the Q will likely convince you to keep two dedicated platforms – a portable one for strictly on-the-go vaping, and an e-rig for home enjoyment.
Additionally, the Extreme Q produces consistent tones for both balloon and whip-style methods throughout the entire temperature spectrum. The desktop naturally emits cooler vapors than other formats, but this is particularly evident with the balloon-bag method. I highly recommend “ballooning” for vape enthusiasts who have sensitive lungs and throats, as this expansive format allows the vapors to cool significantly before hitting your mouth.
One of the biggest advantages of the Extreme Q Desktop Vaporizer over portable platforms is the Q’s precision temperature control system. Now, plenty of premium portable vapes offer precision TC. However, there’s a world of difference between setting your temperature precisely and maintaining it. The former is largely a useless function without the latter.
The point becomes all the more critical for vapers using the Q Vaporizer for medicinal purposes. Inherently, the desktop’s upgraded ceramic heating chamber does a great job of keeping the thermal rating exactly as specified. However, any fluctuations between set and actual temperatures are immediately reported to the user via the LCD interface.
Moreover, you can deploy the Arizer Q’s multiple fan speeds to create different vapor profiles to best suit your needs. For instance, those that prefer rich and robust clouds should opt for higher temperatures and a slower fan speed. On the flipside, flavor lovers will want to lower the thermal rating, and pump up the fan speed.
Of course, no vaporizer system is perfect, and although the Extreme Q has few cons, it does have them. Most notably, it takes roughly 100 seconds to completely inflate the balloon bag. In contrast, the Storz & Bickel Volcano can perform this same task at around 30 seconds. Is it worth the hundreds of dollars to opt for the Volcano simply based on this time differential? Most likely not, but it’s something to keep in mind.
What is a bit of a pain is the balloon-bag process itself. The Volcano Classic and Digital has a much more intuitive functionality thanks to their proprietary easy-valve system. Some might find the Arizer method easy, but I have suspicions that more than a few enthusiasts will find that the Q’s balloon-bag system requires finessing to get right.
As I said, the draw quality of the Extreme Q is quite impressive, but you should be aware of its quirks. However, you should also note that at the price differential between the Q and its rival Volcano series, the benefits of going full-premium may not justify the financial cost.
“Extreme”-ly Abundant User Conveniences
Not only is Arizer known for its superior vapor production and flavor, it also earns enthusiast-community accolades for frontloading their devices and kits with exceptional value. Even their lower-priced “fighter models” keep corner-cutting to an absolute minimum. With a higher-end product like the Extreme Q, customers are right to expect a lot. In my opinion, Arizer does not disappoint.
First, the Extreme Q Desktop Vaporizer features an array of accessories and components to fully facilitate either whip or balloon-bag methods. The only thing you need to add is your desired botanicals. Furthermore, the construction of the Q organically sparks social vaping, thanks to its swivel-action glass elbow. And with the included remote control, you can dial-in whatever settings you want from anywhere in the room.
The other major convenience is the ultra-quiet fan system. While it doesn’t impact the flavor per say, having an excessively loud device (such as the original Extreme Q) could get grating for many people. With the revamped Q Desktop, you can sit back, enjoy some music, and let the premium e-rig vapes settle you down after a hard day on the job.
For traveling to botanical-friendly locales (like my new home state of a Massachusetts, 5 minutes from Nashua NH ), I appreciate the fact that Arizer integrated dual voltage in the Extreme Q. A common pain with international travel, say, Amrsterdam perhaps, is to lugging around a voltage converter. While not particularly large, the converter is extremely dense, and therefore, heavy. With the Arizer Extreme Q, I can do away with the voltage converter, and only carry the much lighter wall adapter that connects to European or international style wall sockets.
Finally, the Arizer Q breaks down very easily for cleaning access. Most of the components are constructed out of glass, metal, or food-grade plastic so they’re naturally resilient. The one area you want to maintain more frequently are the screens, which gunk up with unwanted residue.
Overall, the Extreme Q is intuitive and relatively simple to operate, even for the beginner vaper. And at prices below $200, I really don’t know where you can get this kind of value.
Final Thoughts about the Arizer Extreme Q Desktop Vaporizer
Whenever anyone is in the market for an e-rig system, they’re almost always looking for excellent vapor quality. Aesthetics, functionality, and convenience are also significantly important, but at the end of the day, if the clouds are wispy and wimpy, the other attributes become rather irrelevant.
This review doesn’t generate any surprises. Arizer built its reputation on vapor quality, and you get that in abundance with the Extreme Q Desktop. The enthusiast community’s consensus not only verifies this assessment, but also through extensive critical review. I’m confident that if you conducted a blind taste test using the Q and the ultra-premium Volcano series, the difference would be negligible to non-existent.
That said, in terms of craftsmanship, user convenience, and general quality, the Volcano is the superior product. So if you outright wanted the best product (and if price is no concern), it’s impossible to argue against Storz & Bickel.
But unless you’re a trust-fund baby, price is always a concern. When I compare the Q to the Volcano, I’m particularly concerned with value. That is, how much more product am I receiving in return for my additional dollars?
I can’t say that I’m impressed with the Volcano relative to what the Extreme Q gives you at a much lower entry point. You can pretty much buy two Extremes for the price of one Volcano. And while the latter is superior to the former, the benefits certainly don’t warrant another desktop e-rig.
At the end of the day, the Extreme Q is the pound-for-pound winner. Don’t overthink it, and just jump onboard. You’ll be glad you did! We recommend picking one up at NugRepublic.com, who offers a price match guarantee and free shipping on all orders.
A Word about Nug Republic – When I decided to jump in and learn as much as possible about dry herb, wax and oil vaporizers, Nug was there to answer every question, and guide me to the right equipment. While I use these new vaporizers for about 30 days and then return them, on occasion I’ll buy them at a wholesale price. This Extreme Q Desktop Vaporizer is one I will keep. – Tom McBride
Arizer’s flagship desktop model improves upon prior iterations with robust construction, fast and efficient heating system, and the ability to produce immensely rich flavors and big, voluminous vapors.
The Extreme Q can be enjoyed by one, but sharing is caring. The swivel-action glass elbow and the included remote control makes any gathering one for the ages.
Arizer really stepped up their game when they forwarded the Extreme Q. Dollar-for-dollar, nothing comes close to the Q, including the vaunted Storz & Bickel Volcano priced much higher.
Specs - Features - Package Contents
Arizer Extreme Q Kit Features:
Clear View LCD Screen
Dark Chrome Finish
Ceramic Heating Element
Multiple Fan Speed Settings
Dual Functionality – Balloon Bag or Whip Attachment
Precise Temperature Control
Triple Heat Sensors
Arizer Extreme Q Vaporizer Specifications:
Dimensions: 8in x 12in x 12in
Weight: 4.0 lbs
Battery: DC Adapter
Voltage: 110V + 220V
Extreme Q Vaporizer Kit Contenr:
1 x Arizer Extreme Q Vaporizer
2 x Glass Cyclone Bowls
1 x Glass Aromatherapy Dish
1 x Aromatic Botanicals Sample
2 x Screen Pack (1 flat + 1 dome)
1 x Remote Control
2 x Interchangeable/Replaceable Glass Whip Mouthpieces
1 x Glass Stirring Tool
1 x 3 Foot Whip (tubing)
1 x Elbow Adapter
1 x All-Glass Mini Whip (for balloons)
2 x Balloons/Bags with Glass Balloon Mouthpieces & O-Rings