The Arizer XQ2 is a dry herb multi-use desktop vaporizer that can vape cannabis via a whip or balloon, similar to the Volcano Hybrid vaporizer. The Arizer XQ2 desktop vaporizer is an upgraded version of the original Arizer Extreme Q vaporizer released in 2001.
The original Extreme-Q has been our top pick for the best budget desktop vaporizer for over a decade, and the XQ2 now takes the top spot in that category.
The Extreme-Q vaporizer is known for its impressive vapor quality, complete control over sessions, and great value. The new Arizer XQ2 vaporizer is everything the Extreme-Q was but with some much-needed upgrades.
The most significant improvements for me are the new connoisseur bowl and redesigned bag/balloon system. The Connoisseur bowl places the herbs closer to the heater, meaning you no longer need to buy third-party accessories to get the best vapor quality. The updated balloon system allows you to cap the mouthpiece, meaning you can keep the vapor in the bag, similar to the Volcano Vaporizer. The XQ2 also has a sealed vapor path, which is improved over the EQ.
While there are no significant performance improvements, the new XQ2 vaporizer is a much-needed refresher on an old classic. The new design is more aesthetically pleasing, and while it may seem a bit gimmicky, the Dynamic lighting mode via the base LEDs is pretty helpful.
In this Arizer XQ2 vaporizer review, I’ll go over the upgrades from the Arizer Extreme Q, talk about the new XQ2 balloon system, and discuss whether or not I think the XQ2 is worth the upgrade from the Extreme-Q. I’ll also go over how to use the new Arizer XQ2 vaporizer, how to clean the XQ2, and the best tips for use.
The Arizer XQ2 retails for $199. You can click here to buy the XQ2 directly from Arizer, and read below for my full XQ2 vaporizer review, more buying options, and technical details.
Table of Contents
- 1 Design & Build Quality
- 2 XQ2 Attachments: The Whip and Balloon
- 3 Chamber Info + How to Load
- 4 Heating, Temp Options, and Vapor Quality
- 5 How to Use the Arizer XQ2 Desktop Vaporizer
- 6 Maintenance and Cleaning
- 7 Arizer XQ2 Vaporizer Review Summary
- 8 Buying Options
- 9 Technical Specs
- 10 Pros and Cons
- 11 Suggested Reviews
Design & Build Quality
The new Arizer XQ2 exterior got a complete redesign, and it is a bit UFO-looking but, all in all, more aesthetically pleasing. The outer shell is made from plastic and feels a bit cheap but relatively lighter overall, especially when compared to the Volcano.
Overall my first impressions of the Arizer XQ2 and the presentation were excellent. One thing Arizer never skimps on is accessories. You get everything you need to vape cannabis in the box, including extra screens and cleaning accessories. The entire presentation is top-notch, and you can tell Arizer takes pride in the first unboxing impressions. The instruction manual is very well done and comes in multiple languages.
My favorite upgrade with the Arizer XQ2 is the new balloon connector design with an attachable cap. Much better design than the old EQ. You can now seal the vapor in the bag rather than putting your thumb over it like the Extreme Q. There are a few pieces but overall, easy to put together, make new bags, etc.
The XQ2 now has an intake filter that prevents dust or ground flower from getting sucked up into the vape. This is a feature that the volcano has always had, so it’s nice to see the addition here. The downside to the filter is that the bag fill times are increased. A full bag with the fan speed set to high took me 1:09 without the filter and 1:22 with the filter.
I also really like the new Connoisseur bowl design and the Tuff bowlGrips. Tuff BowlGrips make it easy to remove hot bowls. Just remove the bowl from the ceramic heater and then flip to set it down if you’re finished with your session.
The downside is still that the bowls still get extremely hot with enough time, and you need to be very careful removing them and setting them down when you are done with a session.
Overall the Arizer XQ2 desktop vaporizer is designed and built extremely well. Arizer has had over ten years to improve upon a timeless classic, and they did a great job. I wish there were more internal performance improvements like faster fill times, quicker heat-up times, etc., but I also don’t feel like I should be complaining about those features at this price.
XQ2 Attachments: The Whip and Balloon
As I mentioned at the beginning of this Arizer XQ2 review, the XQ2 is a multi-use desktop vaporizer offering the ability to deliver cannabis vapor via a whip option or a bag/balloon option.
The Whip option connects to the top of the newly redesigned Connoisseur bowl, and you can use it a couple of different ways. You can use the XQ2 “direct-draw” style, which means it’s just your lung power breathing in vapor. This is the most complex method and is not preferred. The next is “fan-assist,” which is my favorite. The Arizer XQ2 comes with three different fan speeds to assist or “push” vapor out and into your lungs. Set the fan to level 1, 2, or 3 and let the vaporizer do the work. You will get a more dense hit with better flavor on lower fan speeds.
The next option is the balloon or bag method. The Arizer XQ2 features a completely redesigned balloon system with an attachable cap to seal vapor. No more holding your finger over the mouthpiece like with the OG EQ. One big feature I noticed is that there’s ZERO draw resistance which is a slight win over the Volcano because there is a noticeable, albeit small, amount of draw resistance with both the solid valve and easy valve setups. The glass connector also feels great on the lips and helps cool vapor.
It was easy to set up the new Arizer XQ2 bag system, and I like this design. The XQ2 includes two balloons in the box, and you can pick up a pack of 6 bags for $13 which is super cheap compared to Volcano accessories.
Chamber Info + How to Load
The first thing I recommend doing is adding the screen to the Connoisseur bowl and making sure that the “dome screen” is in the elbow of the mini connector or the whip connector. Trust me when I say you do not want a bag full of little bits of flower. I’m guessing everyone who has used one of these has done this, or maybe I’m just special. Without the dome screen in the elbow, all of your herbs will blow right up into the connector. Fun times.
Now that you’ve avoided this unfortunate mishap, the next step is to load around .2g of coarsely ground-up herbs into the Connoisseur bowl and place it over the ceramic heating element. Make sure the screen is the closest to the heater. You can use the Connoisseur bowl as a “flavor” bowl by flipping it upside down and switching the Tuff BowlGrips, but I didn’t get very good results with this method and prefer to stick with the Connoisseur version.
You can load up to .5 grams in the XQ2, making it great for long sessions, heavier users, or group/party scenarios. I’ve found that a stir or two throughout the session helps remove some herbs from sticking to the dome screen and improves efficiency.
I have also had good luck with very small bowls or micro-dosing, you need to make sure you draw slowly, or the entire bowl can end up stuck to the elbow screen.
Heating, Temp Options, and Vapor Quality
The Arizer XQ2 utilizes full convection heating to deliver smooth, flavorful vapor. The XQ2 vapor path consists of the ceramic heating element, glass bowl, and either the glass mini connector for the balloon or the glass elbow for the whip. You essentially have an all-glass vapor path until it hits the bag or the silicone whip.
The vapor quality is well above average and competes with higher-priced desktop vaporizers. The vapor is sometimes wispy and/or less dense than other top desktop vaporizers, but the flavor is always fantastic. There’s also very little draw resistance with the balloon option, and the fan speed is more than powerful enough to dump tons of vapor into your lungs.
The Arizer XQ2 desktop vaporizer features a full temperature spectrum ranging from 122F – 500F (50C – 260C), and during testing, I found the XQ2 to heat up to around 380F in 90 seconds.
The heat times are slightly improved over the original Arizer Extreme Q vaporizer but still nowhere near the 30-second heat-up time of the Volcano Hybrid. Does the heat-up time matter in a desktop vaporizer, you ask? I don’t know. Sometimes it does, and sometimes it doesn’t.
Overall the performance remains basically the same as the old EQ, with a slight heat-up time improvement. The real vapor quality improvement comes from the new Connoisseur bowl and moving the herbs closer to the heater.
How to Use the Arizer XQ2 Desktop Vaporizer
The XQ2 on-vape display uses five buttons to control everything on the vaporizer. The power button is located in the bottom left, settings in the top left, fan speed control in the top right, and the up or down temp buttons are below the fan button on the right.
You can also control all of the options via remote control, and all of these steps (minus some best-use tips) are listed in the manual.
Power Up and Menu Options
When you first power up the Arizer XQ2 (bottom left button), it will display the preset temperature as a smaller number in the bottom right of the screen. The current temperature is the big number in the middle of the screen. You can also see whether the XQ2 is in Fahrenheit or Celcius. By default, the XQ2 is set to Celcius. To change the temperature to Fahrenheit, go to the settings menu in the top left, arrow down until you see temp settings, press the settings button again, and change the temp to Fahrenheit via the arrow keys. Press the setting button again to return, or it will automatically leave the settings menu if you press nothing for a few seconds.
You can also go in and change a few other settings here, like turning off the annoying audio beep or adjusting the screen brightness to the low setting. I also turned off the temp alert beep because it’s usually just running next to me on my desk. The beeps are overkill, honestly.
Lastly, you can change the LED lights in the base of the Arizer XQ2. The default is set to Dynamic, which will glow yellow to orange when heating, green twice when heated, orange when the temperature is maintained, and purple when the fan is active. It’s actually a pretty cool setup and a good visual representation of what the XQ2 is doing, especially because the beeps are so darn annoying IMO. You can change it to cycle a spectrum or pick a single color as well, but I just left it on Dynamic. It would be cool if you could connect it to your HUE bridge.
Two Delivery Methods: Whip and Balloon
The Arizer XQ2 can get you medicated via a few different delivery methods, a 3’ whip (silicone), a balloon/bag option, and a mini-whip or direct draw option.
I like to use both the whip and the bags with this unit, and with both methods, I like to use the bowl screen closer to the heater. I find this gives me more satisfying vapor, but it’s nice to have both options for different preferences.
When you are using the whip mode, you can use fan-assist or pull without the fan. I switch back and forth, but I get the most consistent avb when I take long, slow draws with fan assist. When using the whip, one thing to be aware of is flower getting sucked up to the elbow screen if you pull too hard. If you blow back into the whip slightly, you can usually get any stuck herb to drop back down into the bowl.
The new bag system is a nice improvement over the EQ2. It feels nicer while drawing, and the new system can be sealed with a silicone cap. When using the XQ2 with balloons, I like to fill them at low or medium bag speed even though it takes a bit longer because the herb seems to get cooked a bit more evenly and is less likely to get stuck on the elbow screen. This is important because sometimes I have to set the bag down while gaming, and the old system would slowly leak.
I don’t use the XQ2 in mini-whip mode very often because of where I have it positioned in the room, so I usually end up going with the whip or the balloon. However, it’s great to have another option, and for some people’s setups, this might be their preferred option.
Maintenance and Cleaning
Routine maintenance consists of brushing out the chamber and the elbow “dome screens” immediately after a session. This will also help cut down on the amount of draw resistance. I also recommend a good stir mid-way through a session to help loosen up any materials wedged in the corners of the screen.
The cleaning is rather straightforward because everything is glass or stainless steel mesh screens. Soak all the glass connectors and screens in Isopropyl alcohol, and my preferred method to clean dirty vaporizer whips is to boil them. Check out my full tutorial on how to clean silicone vaporizer whips here.
Be sure to remove the Tuff BowlGrips from the Connoisseur bowls before placing them in ISO. You can clean the Tuff BowlGrips with warm soapy water if they get dirty. Same with the silicone pieces for the balloon.
There’s no cleaning the bags. I recommend emptying all the vapor from the bag as some residue will stick to the inside if left for longer periods.
You get one extra bag included with the XQ2, but you can use the same bag for quite some time, and you can pick up a replacement balloon pack of 6 food-grade bags for $13 directly from Arizer. Thoroughly rinse and completely dry before using it again. Especially the whip!
Arizer XQ2 Vaporizer Review Summary
The Arizer XQ2 desktop vaporizer IS an upgrade over the Extreme-Q, but the internals, vapor quality, fill times, and heat times pretty much all remain the same. Sure, the programmable temps are nice, the LED lights in the base are cool, and the new redesign gives a much more appealing look, but as far as performance goes, it’s basically the same vaporizer.
The added cap on the bag is a nice feature, and the new connoisseur bowl eliminates the need for third-party accessories, but we could have just got the new bowl and added it to the Extreme-Q. I am happy they sealed the vapor path, and it’s nice they added the intake filter that is optional to use.
I could be jaded with all the slightly upgraded iterations over the last couple of years, but I don’t see the big “oh, that’s awesome” upgrade. The Extreme-Q isn’t as flashy, but if you don’t care about LED lights, caps on your bags, or programmable temps, the OG EQ might still be the way to go.
Do you already have an Extreme-Q and wondering if the Arizer XQ2 is worth the upgrade? I wouldn’t. Buy the Glass Connoisseur Bowl with some Tuff BowlGrips and a screen pack. That will set you back $35.
Don’t get me wrong, the Arizer Extreme-Q and the newer Arizer XQ2 are still the very best options for the best budget desktop vaporizer. I don’t think the XQ2 is worth the upgrade over the EQ if you already have it.
If you don’t already have a desktop vaporizer, and looking for a great budget option, then depending on price, the Arizer XQ2 might be the best desktop vaporizer for you.
POTV has the Arizer XQ2 for $199 and the Extreme-Q for $149. I think the XQ2 is worth that price. The XQ2 retailed for $319.99 when they first released it, which is insanely expensive for the lack of performance upgrades. Click here to buy the XQ2 from POTV.
So far, the Arizer XQ2 desktop vaporizer has received glowing reviews, and it is a great budget desktop vaporizer. However, it still doesn’t compare to the Volcano Hybrid’s simplicity, quick, potent sessions, and overall reliability. However, the Volcano Hybrid retails for $699, which is over $500 more expensive. The Volcano Classic is the cheaper of the volcano vaporizer options, retailing for $479, roughly $300 more than the Arizer XQ2. If you compare it to whip-only vapes like the Ditanium or 7th-floor units, you are still spending less money with the XQ2, and you get the balloon option.
For the price of a medium-tier portable, you get a reliable, consistent desktop that can be used in multiple ways. To improve, you have to spend about 100 bucks extra to jump up to a Ditanium vaporizer or almost triple or quadruple the price to get a Volcano Classic or the digital Volcano Hybrid.
That’s why the Arizer XQ2 and the OG Extreme-Q desktop vaporizers are such great value buys. They may not be the best at the bags or whip options, but it’s pretty darn close and can save you a lot of money.
Hence, the Jack of all Trades, Master of None.
If you end up buying the XQ2, especially if you are a heavy user, I would consider picking up a few extra screens because they will eventually get lost or too dirty, even though they do throw in a few extras. I would also get one additional pack of bags if you plan to use bags, and if you think you will be primarily a whip user, I would consider an extra whip. Then you should be good for years of use.
Thank you for taking the time to check out my Arizer XQ2 desktop vaporizer review. Feel free to hit me up in the comments below with any questions about the Arizer XQ2, the Extreme-Q, or any other vaporizer. I pretty much have them all. Have a great day and happy vaping.
|Arizer XQ2 Desktop Vaporizer
|122F – 500F (50C – 260C)
|3 Years + Lifetime Ceramic Heater
Pros and Cons
Arizer XQ2 Desktop Vaporizer
The Arizer XQ2 is a multi-use dry herb desktop vaporizer featuring a full temperature spectrum, convection heating and the ability to use both a whip or balloon setup.
Product Brand: Arizer