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You want to buy a handheld vaporizer, but you have absolutely no idea where to begin. It just seems like the options are countless, from brands to designs to functionality. And it may also seem like most of those that are worth your while come with such hefty price tags. Right now you may be feeling as if switching to a healthier alternative to smoking isn’t worth it, after all. At least, that’s what your wallet might indicate. But, wait! Maybe all you really need is a bit of guidance, and you have certainly come to the right place for that.

Vaporizer Basics

Before you go shopping for a handheld vaporizer, it’s important to learn some basics. First, you have to decide whether to get a unit that uses conduction or convection as heating method. Here is a quick definition of the two methods to help you differentiate them:

Conduction
This is simply the transfer of heat from one object to another, which means your material is directly heated by the unit’s heating element. You may need to constantly stir the material to facilitate efficient vaporization. Note as well that with this method, the material will continue being heated even when you are not inhaling.

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With conduction, the material is directly heated by the unit’s heating element and keeps getting heated even when you’re not inhaling. Flickr.com photo by decade_null

Convection
This involves the heating of material by way of passing hot air through the chamber, which means your material is never in direct contact with the unit’s heating element. Units that use this heating method are said to be more efficient because they heat the material only when you draw.

Second, you’ll have to ask yourself what kind of material you’re most likely to vape on a regular basis. Will you be vaping just one type of material or do you want your vaporizer to have the flexibility of allowing you to vape two or more kinds of material? By KINDS of material, we don’t mean different types of herbs; we mean herbs, oils, and wax blends/concentrates. Here are three units that are capable of vaporizing more than one kinds of material:

DaVinci Ascent
This unit is capable of vaporizing both herbs and essential oils. Other than that, it is also lauded for having one of the most precise temperature control systems as well as an admirable battery life. Perhaps the biggest drawback where the use of oils is concerned is that the cleaning after each oil-vaping session can be a little intense, but if that’s not a problem, then this unit just might be the right one for you. With a temperature range of 200F-450F, the Ascent by DaVinci certainly allows you to fully enjoy the vaping experience any way you want it. And considering that it offers up to 90 minutes of continued use, it definitely is pretty handy to use on-the-go.

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The DaVinci Ascent is capable of vaporizing both herbal blends and essential oils.
Flickr.com photo by grongar

Haze
This unit comes with two all-purpose cans, two convection screens, and two conduction screens, allowing for ultimate versatility. All cans and screens can be used for vaporizing dry herbs and the all-purpose cans can be used for vaporizing oils or wax. It also features a dual-bowl system that enables you to pack dry herbs in one bowl and wax in the other. You can even use pre-pack cans with the unit if you want.

V2 Pro Series 3
Technically, this unit isn’t really categorized as a handheld vaporizer, but as a vape pen (vaporizers that, as the term suggests, resemble a pen). But we included it in our list because it serves the purpose of vaporizing different kinds of material. Vape pens are typically used for vaping oils, but this unit is known as the all-in-one vape pen because of its ability to vaporize wax and dry herbs as well. Although the taste it delivers may not be at par with the two other vaporizers on this list, it does produce solid vapor.

Third, you may want to ask yourself if you prefer a unit with internal or external batteries. External batteries have the advantage of being easily replaceable. This means you can carry extra batteries with you so you can continue vaping even as one set of batteries run out and need to be charged. If you prefer units with internal batteries, you may want to choose one that can still be used even while it is charging. More important considerations, however, are battery life, charging time, and charging options (car adapters, battery packs, etc.).

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It may also help narrow down your options if you set a budget before you go shopping for a portable vaporizer. The good thing about vaporizers is that you don’t really have to spend too much to get a good unit that offers an acceptable vaping experience. The key is in doing some research, checking out independent reviews, and soliciting feedback from those who’ve been vaping for some time. Learn from the experience of others, so to speak.

Vaporizer Handheld – Basic Buying Tips
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