Desktop Vaporizers vs Portable Vaporizers – 5 Things You Should Know

by Chris Husong

Desktop Vaporizers vs Portable Vaporizers – 5 Things You Should Know

Expanding your smoking collection can be a challenge because there are so many options and new features available when investing in the right smoking devices. Take it from us here at Headshop, we have almost 200 different vaporizers to select from!

Recently, vaping dry herbs has become one of the safest and most affordable ways to enjoy weed. Using vape technology differs from smoking a joint or a bong. Vaporizers have special heating elements that heat up the weed and create a rich vapor instead of using combustion. With no ash from burned plant matter, this means enhanced flavor and less harm to your lungs.

Check out our blog for more articles about what makes some vapes better than others, including Best Vaporizers for Weed Smokers. But first, if you're trying to decide between a desktop vaporizer and a portable vaporizer, we will cover each type of vaporizer in detail in this article to help you feel confident in your decision.

  1. Desktop or Portable Size

Let's start with the most obvious difference between desktop vaporizers and portable vaporizers. And that is size, of course. 

If you're looking for a permanent option at home, a desktop device is a great solution. However, because of its size, it's not so great on the go. Also, desktop vaporizers must be plugged in for use, as well as to recharge, and for the most part, do not use batteries. Of note, the Volcano Vaporizer from Storz & Bickel is a hybrid between a desktop and a portable vaporizer. Once the bag that connects to the base is filled with vapor, you can enjoy vaping anywhere.

On the other hand, portable vaporizers are much smaller, more compact, and ideal if you're vaping mostly happens away from home. Portable vaporizers do require recharging which can be tedious, especially because lithium-ion batteries tend to decrease in total battery life after prolonged use. However, portable vaporizers offer unparalleled freedom which means you can enjoy vaping literally whenever and wherever you go.

  1. It’s All About the Vapor 

Some vaporizers provide huge clouds of vapor using customized settings. This is a great option for those who want to quit smoking because the thick vapor offers the smoking satisfaction you crave. This doesn't necessarily mean you'll have to spend more money on a vape. These days, just about all vaporizers feature some type of customized temperature settings. For example, the XVape Fog Pro Portable Vaporizer has full digital control temperatures ranging from 212°F up to 428°F and costs under $150.

Of note, smaller vaporizers typically do not produce as much vapor as desktop vaporizers. This is because they have a smaller heating chamber with a smaller airway. Desktop devices known as whip vapes feature a hose around 3 feet long which holds a lot of vapor and provides a larger hit. Whip vapes have simple controls to adjust the temperature. We recommend the Vaporite Solo Digital Desktop Vaporizer which offers full digital control with temperatures ranging from 253°F up to 420°F and costs under $100.

  1. Your Lifestyle

Think about your lifestyle and when and where you enjoy your vaping sessions. It will impact your decision greatly. If you are working remotely from home like so many others over the last couple of years, a desktop vaporizer is worth considering. We should mention that these devices feature some type of mouthpiece or bag to enhance your experience even more.

On the other hand, if your active lifestyle often finds you enjoying a smoking session away from home or even outdoors, it might be better to consider one of the many portable vaporizers available on the market today. If you suspect your portable vape will get some hard use outside, we recommend the DaVinci MIQRO Dry Herb Vaporizer. It has a super durable airplane-grade quality aluminum body available in five stylish colors. It also has a replaceable battery. 

When it comes to portable vaporizers, it's important to understand how a particular portable vape’s rechargeable battery charges. For example, many use USB connections which are extremely convenient compared to those that use proprietary brand connections only.

  1. Solo or Shared Vaping 

Portable vaporizers are perfect for solo smoking sessions. However, we all know that smoking weed can be a very social experience. Consider a desktop device like the Volcano Vaporizer for sharing with friends, instead of passing around your vape pen. It has a bag-based method of delivery and multiple bags can be used. This means your friends can have their own bag! Not only does this prevent any vape hogs, but it also reduces the potential spread of bacteria.

If you plan to share your vape, it's a good idea to invest in disinfectant/alcohol cleansing wipes to clean the mouthpiece before and after each use. Both desktop and portable vaporizers feature some type of mouthpiece, so it's essential to keep it clean and sanitary.

  1. Affordable or High-End Device

Vaporizers tend to be more expensive than other smoking devices. That's because there's a lot of design, science, and technology in even the most basic vapes. Even so, the price point of vapes has decreased significantly. A portable vaporizer is the way to go if you're looking for cheaper options. They can range from $20 all the way up to $300. For instance, the CCELL Silo Auto Draw Cartridge Vaporizer costs under $35. On the other hand, the Volcano Vaporizer will set you back $850, but of course, you get the finest craftsmanship and quality that will last. If you want to invest in Storz & Bickel without the hefty splurge, we suggest the Crafty for $229 or the Mighty for $329.

It's also worth noting the Puffco Peak OG Smart Rig offers high-end concentrate enjoyment for $279. They also have the Puffco Peak Pro for $379 which includes its own app. All controls are adjustable from temperature to LED colors.


Ultimately, deciding between all of the many different vaporizers available today comes down to your preference with respect to the five things described above: size, vapor, lifestyle, solo or shared va[omg, and price. But, keep in mind, most serious smokers have BOTH desktop and portable vaporizers in their smoking collection!


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