If you are new to the vaporizer scene, there are a few names you have probably heard of already if no others: the Silver Surfer by 7th Floor and the Volcano by Storz and Bickel. 7th Floor, located in Colorado Springs, is often referred to as “Silver Surfer” because this is their most popular and visible model.
Silver Surfer Overshadows Da Buddha
It stands out because of customization options that allow customers to have it engraved with tattoo-like drawings or their own designs against one of several vivid shades. The Volcano is considered the top vaporizer, thanks to German engineering, but a Silver Surfer could be a close second.
It has the advantage of being American made which, for Americans, is a definite plus. They like keeping their money local. The Silver Surfer is also cheaper than a Volcano unless you customize it, but they are used differently: the Volcano takes a balloon attachment; 7th Floor makes whip vaporizers.
One should not forget that 7th Floor also makes another type of popular vaporizer; one that is easier for ordinary mortals to afford than the Silver Surfer. It is called Da Buddha.
Where the Silver Surfer tilts back, Da Buddha is an upright cylinder. There are pros and cons to its design and customers often prefer the Silver Surfer if they can afford it, but do not dismiss the Da Buddha out of hand. It has many great features for an affordable price: about $189.95 from an authorized dealer or you can buy it directly from 7th Floor.
Features of Da Buddha
It will come as no surprise that on the face of the cylinder a fat Buddha stares out at you. He is etched in simple lines without coloring or shading, but there’s no mistaking him for anything else. Da Buddha comes in silver, but for $20 more you can have it powder-coated black.
7th Floor reports that they chose the cylindrical design for a reason: to facilitate cooling. Your materials are heated fully in the ceramic chamber. But once they reach your mouth, they should have cooled down somewhat along the tube pathway.
This design has its drawbacks, however. With the bowl over your heating element, materials occasionally drop into the element and burn. Even if they don’t make it to your airways, there is still that smell of burnt herbs spoiling the flavor. Smell accounts for more than ½ of what you taste. This is why the Silver Surfer is tilted backwards at a 90-degree angle — to prevent herbs from falling into the element.
Customers take draws on their vapor through an inverted glass whip. Materials are heated using an Alumina ceramic heating element (also found in the Silver Surfer). This is extremely thin, inert, and totally effective. Ceramic is an efficient heat conductor used in most of the finest vaporizers, portable or table-bound.
What your Purchase Comes with
Buying Da Buddha from an authorized re-seller has its advantages. 7th Floor sells them at a lower price to these retailers because they are ordered in large volumes. Re-sellers can then sell them on to customers with additional pieces like a free grinder, a bag, whip, stir tool, replacement screens, and a manual. Some of those would be included if you bought it from 7th Floor too, but probably not the grinder. It will only be an acrylic one, but better than nothing. Herbs are not included with your purchase.
An advantage of shopping with 7th Floor is their customization options. The basic price is $190, but you can choose to add other features like a vaper tamer to cool vaper completely before it reaches your lips.
More Features of Da Buddha
A direct-draw vaporizer is one you draw air from without assistance. Basically, you suck air through the whip. Drawing can be hard for some people. If that describes you, Da Buddha is not the right vaporizer. Vapers rely on the direct-draw method.
The good thing about direct-draw vaporizers is that they don’t use fans, meaning they are completely silent.
There are hands-free units out there, Da Buddha being one of them. The hands-free whip is grounded: it doesn’t move around. The positive of that is being able to do other things while you draw. The negative is removing the screen to stir herbs occasionally or living with unevenly heated and potentially wasted herbs.
Control temperature using a dial on the face of your Da Buddha. Being analog-controlled is good and bad: cheaper than an LED screen but less precise than a digital mod. You find, too, that if you need to replace a part, analog machines are cheaper and easier to repair than digital ones.
You have to plug Da Buddha into a socket, so it is for use as a tabletop mod only. If you want to carry it anywhere, pack it in the bag supplied or risk chipping the paint if you have it coated.
Da Buddha Vaporizer Review: Customer Response
You could say customers are happy, but not thrilled, with Da Buddha. They like buying an item made in the United States. They appreciate the price, which is less than some portable machines.
They don’t like the cylinder shape facing directly up. For some reason, the Volcano has no problem being upright, but consumers who own Da Buddha sometimes long for the tilted-back shape. Not everyone has trouble with burnt herbs though. Several reviews have been extremely complimentary. You often read this qualifying statement however: Da Buddha is great for the price. In other words, spend a bit more and you will have the vaporizer you really want.
Many customers have been using their Da Buddha successfully for several years, a testimony to how sturdy its build is. Vapor is generally clean and tasty.