WARNING: The products discussed may contain or use nicotine. Nicotine is an addictive chemical; in many cities and a few states, you must be 21 to purchase vaping products and/or products containing nicotine. Please familiarize yourself with and obey the law in your location.
It’s hard to imagine that a product commonly called “the best vaporizer in the world” would need much of an upgrade, but just as most products can use a bit of incremental improvement, the PAX 3 Vaporizer is the upgraded and latest model in an already strong line.
The PAX 3 Vaporizer comes in a box that appears simple enough, yet it is loaded with compartments holding a plethora of accessories.
Included are the PAX 3 vaporizer, a concentrate insert, a charging dock, a MicroUSB to USB cable, two mouthpieces, two oven lids, three spare screens, a maintenance kit, a spare O-ring gasket, and a multi-tool keyring.
Material: Loose-leaf & extract
Finish: High-polished anodized aluminum
Heat Time: 15 seconds
Temp Settings: 4+
Charge Time: 90 minutes
Colors: Black, gold, silver, rose gold
Dimensions: 3.87″ long by 1.21″ wide by 0.85″ thick
Open Volume: .4″ tall by 0.73 wide by 0.34″ deep
So let’s take a look at the PAX 3, and then we can talk about some of the accessories and how it performs. The PAX 3’s highly polished aluminum body has a beautiful sheen and a nice heft; it feels good when in-hand..
The only sharp edges are on the ends, where its oblong cylindrical shape stops. There are four LEDs cut into the aluminum that form the PAX logo; the lights have various functions — they indicate charge (by 25% increments), they glow white then purple, then green when the Pax 3 is powered on, and they indicate temperature.
On the back of the PAX 3, there are two contacts that connect with the charging dock.
The bottom of the vaporizer has a cap that is held on with magnets. To remove it, you press on one end, and it will come off. Inside, you can see the loose-leaf chamber with a filter installed.
This is the concentrate insert; I have to confess that I have zero experience with concentrates, so this bit of the review is more theoretical than practice. So … in order to load it, you remove the end piece and place a small amount of concentrate into the chamber. You should avoid getting any concentrate into the two chamber tubes. You then replace the chamber lid and insert the end piece into the PAX oven. My one complaint here is that the concentrate insert doesn’t fit all the way in; it seems secure enough for use, but it looks like it would be easily knocked off. To use with the concentrate chamber, you turn the PAX on and let it heat for at least 30 seconds before you use the vaporizer. When you are done using it, you should turn the PAX off and allow the insert to cool for at least 2 – 3 minutes before removing the insert.
The PAX 3 vaporizer has a built-in mouthpiece that might seem a bit off-putting if you are used to a rubber tip, but it is discreet and easy to use— you simply rest your mouth against the top edge of the vaporizer, over the hole, and breathe in.
If you absolutely hate using this type mouthpiece, it’s no problem — use the included multi-tool to pop the low-profile mouthpiece off and then insert the rubber tip mouthpiece. Options are good, right?
When the PAX 3 is charging, the LEDs will glow and blink white, then solidly once charging is complete.
When you turn the PAX 3 on (by pressing the middle of the mouthpiece), the lights will start at white, then they will glow purple, and then ultimately green. There is a haptic feedback given when the temperature is reached, which is a nice touch — and it gets there quicky — just ~15 seconds versus the PAX 2’s 45 seconds. You can adjust the temperature by pressing the center of the mouthpiece and holding it for two seconds. Low heat is indicated by a green bar in the upper left, medium low heat is indicated by two yellow bars on the top half of the logo, medium high is indicated by three orange bars (at the top and bottom left of the logo), and high heat is indicated by four red bars.
The PAX 3 has a 3500 mAh battery (which is bigger than any previous PAX models), so you can expect fewer charges in between uses and quicker heating time. Because there are two oven lids, you can decide if you want to load more or less in the loose-leaf chamber; the appropriate lid will make sure that you get the same great vaping experience either way. It can be a little tricky to load the chamber without spilling your herb, but if you set the pen on a flat surface and take a moment to do it carefully, you’ll manage.
Using the PAX 3 is a simple matter of lightly pressing the top of the mouthpiece until the LEDs come on, then waiting for it to heat up. Depending upon whether you are smoking concentrate, dry herbs, or something else, you can adjust the temperature for the best experience.
The PAX 3 heats the bowl using a conductive heating element that warms the oven as you draw in; if it is turned on, the material in the bowl will continue to cook, so it is important to remember to turn the PAX 3 off when you aren’t actively using it — luckily it will turn back on to the proper temperature quickly. Using the low-profile mouthpiece, it is easy to get a good draw without sucking hard; the vapor produced is thick and rich, and the oven is very efficient at cooking the entire contents. You can use the multi-tool to pack and stir the bowl as you go, to make sure that you are vaping at maximum efficiency.
What sets the PAX 3 Vaporizer even further apart from others is its smartphone app. Pairing the vaporizer to the app is a simple matter of pressing the mouthpiece button on (while the app is open) and then shaking the vaporizer until the lights glow blue. You can name your vaporizer, and you may have to do an update.
Once your PAX 3 is connected and updated, you can use the app to control the temperature of the vaporizer (it’s much more exact than the general settings you can reach on the vaporizer), you can also use it to personalize your PAX 3 with color themes, brightness, games, and the vibration level. Games with our vaporizer? What? Okay, sure. Seems like a good way to run the battery down, though. There are also various configurations for using your vaporizer — everything from a default setting to a maximum discretion setting, to a temp boost that increases during your draw that decreases quickly after — giving you the most possible flavor.
Whether you are using your PAX 3 Vaporizer for loose-leaf herbs or concentrates, this is one of the easiest to use, easiest to personalize, and best experiences available.
The PAX 3 Vaporizer retails for $274.99, and it is available directly from the manufacturer and from other retailers.
Source: Manufacturer supplied review sample
What I Like: Dual use vaporizer; ~15-second heat up time; Smartphone app; Easy to use; 10-year warranty; Multiple temperature settings; Haptic feedback; Complete accessory and maintenance kit included; Excellent vaping experience
What Needs Improvement: The concentrate chamber doesn’t sit flush with the vaporizer, which seems clumsy and wrong on an otherwise nearly perfect device