We’ve seen every variation of desktop vaporizer at this point, and you probably have too. With a whip and a flat, wide base, dozens of flavors are on the market from Da Buddha to Vapor Bros. So when one is out there clearly bringing more value on a budget, it’s sure to turn heads.
Okay, so the Arizer Extreme Q might not look like a glowing feat of innovation at first glance, but there’s a lot to like about this accessory-laden desktop vaporizer.
It supports balloons, direct draw vaporizing, and comes with a remote for easy controls. All that, and more for less than CAD$200? That could be a winning combination.
When was the Arizer Extreme Q released?
Arizer first released the Extreme vaporizer at the beginning of 2008. It was continuously improved over two years and three versions until, in 2010, the fourth version was re-marketed as the Extreme Q, for Quiet.
Who's the Extreme Q for?
Put simply, the Extreme Q is an excellent fit for someone looking to vaporize at home, and enjoys versatility. Use the whip by the television, and then fill up a bag and take it to the kitchen while you waft some jasmine into the den. You may not be able to pocket it and head to a show, but you can invite some friends over and impress with quality vapor served up different ways.
For around CAD$200, the Extreme Q is competing in a market filled with clone devices and generic, rebranded vaporizers. Arizer’s attention to detail and value promise doesn’t go unnoticed, and for some small inconveniences, you’ll see a big return on your investment, particularly if you’re the kind of person who likes to change things up and try something different.
What the Arizer Extreme Q offers isn’t game-changing design language, or top-shelf vapor production, but unmatched versatility and all-around strong performance at a very appealing price point. Whether that means filling bags, short personal sessions, or a few friends sitting around a circle, the Extreme Q is happy to oblige.
Straight up and down
The Extreme Q’s black plastic housing and stainless steel look help it dress down, although it looks more appropriate alongside kitchen appliances than sitting on a living room coffee table. Either way, the looks betray the reality of the situation, which doesn’t feel nearly as sturdy as it looks. The materials don’t feel cheap by any means, but it’s a bit of a step down build wise from premium desktop vaporizers like the Volcano.
Arizer’s take on the desktop vaporizer points the output straight up, which has some immediate benefits. It’s more compact than a desktop with the heating element out to the side, and the glass joint swivels easily, assuming you keep it clean, allowing you to sit around the device if you have friends over.
Most importantly, it enables some new features. A fan inside allows you to fill balloons with vapor of your choice by setting the attachment right on top of the heating element. It also allows for herbs or extracts on a cotton swab, without it all dripping to one side. Finally, it acts as a potpourri warmer for aromatics and herbs, with a special open-top attachment you can fill with your favorite scents.
A small digital control panel graces the bottom of the tower at a slight angle, looking up at the user. It’s a simple, but fairly sizable read-out with enough backlight to display in the dark without overwhelming. Two buttons on the right adjust the temperature, while a mode button cycles you through the modes, not unlike a digital watch. The fourth button turns the device on or off quickly, regardless of mode.
It may feel a little quirky, but the Extreme Q’s included remote control actually offers a number of features not found on the unit itself, and should save you some time when adjusting fan speed or temperature. There’s even a blue light around the base of the unit you can turn on and off for some added flair. It’s unlikely you’ll use it more than a few feet from the tower itself, except when engaged as a diffuser, but it allows for a quick change of temperature without having to reach over.
Arizer throws as much as it can in the box in search of versatility. There’s an open-top potpourri dish for infusing the air with your favorite scents, and a glass stir tool to stir up the herbs. You’ll also find an extra set of screens, a power cord with an adapter, and the aforementioned remote control.
If you’re looking to fill balloons, Arizer tosses in two balloon kits, which includes plastic bags, ties, and a pair of frosted glass mouthpieces. For the whip users, a modest three foot length of tubing and a glass mouthpiece, plus a short length of glass with a bend Arizer refers to as a mini-whip that would put your face very close to the heating element.
That’s the sort of accessory bundle you might find with high-end vaporizers from the likes of Storz and Bickel, at a fraction of the price. It might seem overwhelming at first, but you may find yourself trying new things with the Extreme Q, and your room might smell really nice as a result.
Precise vapor control
Digital controls always help a vaporizer go from potentially finicky operation to precise science, and the Extreme Q is no different. You should be able to achieve a wide variety of temperatures and flavor levels with finite accuracy.
It’s particularly effective as it comes up to temperature. At lower temperatures, after the material has had a chance to warm up, the Extreme Q produces intensely flavorful hits at lower volumes. It doesn’t pack the same sort of thick, luxurious clouds you’d find from more expensive options with exotic shapes and carefully designed heating elements, but it beats out other simple tower vapes by a longshot.
As we discuss further below, you may have to keep an eye on the temperature and fan speed to maintain a consistent point on that scale. The unit continually heats, and you won’t be able to easily pull the bowl without cooling everything down first, so actively drawing on the whip, or using the fan liberally, is key to producing enough vapor.
Too hot to handle
Despite the budget-friendly price, the Extreme Q competes with vaporizers at twice the price. You’ll have to set temperatures a little higher than you’re used to, particularly if you aren’t using the fan to assist you. Which brings us to the Extreme Q’s oddly specific issue -- warm-up time.
To be clear, the Extreme Q heats up quickly, reaching ideal vaping temperatures within 60-90 seconds from totally cold. That’s not lightning quick, but you won’t be left checking your watch to see why it’s taking so long.
Unfortunately, reaching your target temperature doesn’t mean the material is ready to go quite yet. The manual recommends filling the bowl and placing it on top of the Extreme Q before you start heating, but you’ll still need to pull or a few times, or run the fan at low, until it starts to produce vapor.
There’s also the issue of cooling the unit down afterward. Even with the coating on the upper part of the cyclone bowl, it’s still too hot to touch after a few minutes of vaporizing. The few inches of hose closest to the device will also be quite warm, so you have to let it cool for a few minutes before emptying or mixing it.
Is the Arizer Extreme Q worth?
Absolutely. In fact, the Arizer Extreme Q vaporizer might be the best bang for your buck. It can be finicky at first, so expect a little learning curve. But once you get it down, the vapor is fantastic. The feature set is rich, and the price is not even half what it was at release ($300). It’s literally less than ¼ the price of a Volcano Hybrid, so yes, it’s worth it!
Arizer doesn’t cheap out when it comes to warranty, including a three year coverage for any defects. Spend a bit more, and you’ll find five or ten year warranties above the CAD$400 price point, but for less than CAD$200, we’re not complaining at all.