The Indica Vaporizer Review


Indica_spinPortability and discretion, often the two most sought after requirements when selecting a vaporizer. Considering the amount of time spent outside the home, the needs for a portable unit has become increasingly popular. Enter the Indica Vaporizer, a new high-end portable unit which caters to enthusiasts who value build quality and sleek form factor.

First Impressions:

Before removing the unit from its packaging, I took a moment to examine the wooden exterior. If presentation helps set the expectation level, then seeing the Indica’s lacquered wooden storage container will be the first of many smiles. I took a chance to speak with the Indica designer about the packaging. He remarked, often end-user throws away boxes, creating unnecessary waste. By choosing a wooden housing, the Indica makers help protect your unit as well as provide a ‘stash box’ for your herbs and tobacco.

Unpacking the contents, the Indica unit is the first piece of equipment inlaid on a black felt insert. While not the size of a traditional Zippo lighter you can see where the design drew inspiration. The reflective finish and minimalist product branding lend to the Indica’s appearance of an oversized lighter. To offer our readers context on size, the Indica likens more to the dimensions of a traditional cigarette pack. Using the Indica in public should not present issue as the purpose is  disguised well. However, since it likens to a lighter/ drinking flask you may be questioned why you are consuming lighter fluid. Fair warning, folks. Loading the device is done through a side compartment located on the left of the device. Affixed with a magnet, the door is easily removed by pressing downward and lifting the lid up. The bowl or herb loading area is larger by portable standards holding upwards of .3 grams (tightly packed/ micro grind) when not used with a provided spacer. We recommend using .2 grams as to not impede airflow and vapor production. To accommodate users with lower tolerance or persons who desire less herb intake, the Indica provides mini spacers to reduce surface area of the bowl. A recurring issue with portables with large bowls has been a requirement for aftermarket screens or spacers. The Indica does it right in this regard, by providing the user with the required spacer to vaporize small loads. There are 5 different heat settings to choose from, each represented with a different colored indicator. With context to a lighter, the Indica designers chose to place the temperature selection/LED indicator where one would normally strike the flint. Holding this button for 3 seconds activates the unit, followed by pressing twice to change desired heat settings. The designer elaborated on F.C. bit further regarding the heater:

…the heating format is a PCB designed to cover the entire stainless steel chamber and radiate inward. This allows us to keep your temperature constant with very little fluctuation.

It is no surprise the Indica’s oven is driven through conduction heating. Therefore, the oven continuously heats herbs regardless of whether the user is physically drawing vapor.  The stainless steel air path runs from the oven through the top of the device and is covertly enclosed in a stainless steel cap bearing resemblance to a lighters ignition source.  The air path narrower in comparison to similar convection vaporizers, so users should expect restriction while drawing. Adjacent to the airpath and typically where the flint would be found is the activation button/ LED indicator. Charging the device initially does come with some precursors and the guide recommends you charge for 12 hours. After which the unit only requires a 3 hour charge cycle for approximately 1.5 hours of continuous use(duration varies based on temperatures selected). After approx. 10 minutes of a single heat setting, the device will automatically shutoff conserving power. The Indica is charged via USB Mini 5 port at the bottom of the device and for convenience may be connected to any USB Type A connection or with the provided wall adapter. In addition, the device may be operated while charging, should the battery cells become depleted.


 

Performance

IndicaI am impressed with the taste and vapor quality the Indica is able to achieve in such a small package. Heat settings Cyan(340F) and Blue(358F) allow the user to appreciate the taste of their herbs.  While settings Green(376F), Purple(394F), and Red(412F) allows for visible vapor plumes consistent with other top-tier portable vaporizers. The device has the temperature range to appreciate the flavor of your herbs, as well as the heating power to satisfy the most stringent “cloud chaser” needs. Heat up time is listed at 60 seconds, but as with all portable vaporizers consider your ambient temperature(with lower temps, requiring longer heat up duration). While heating to temperature, odor from herbs is faintly detectable.   Packing the unit requires precision, as the bowl is deeper than it is wide. Fortunately, the Indica team provides users a vape pick that helps push herbs inside the bowl. While packing, be mindful of the lid grooves. These recessed portions have a tendency to trap herbs, but are easily removed with the provided Indica vape pick. Removing the contents from the Indica, again requires the provided pick or toothpick. Since the Indica holds upwards of .3 grams a typical user may only need re-load the Indica while at home. I found  using the Indica with .2 grams and one spacer yielded ideal results. Loaded and powered off, the unit does not emit noticeable odor from herb contents. Coupled with the hinged lid, the mouthpiece typically with faint traces of odor is concealed fully for the user.

Portable users often cite problems with smaller loads producing wispy vapor. The Indica team took this issue into consideration and provided customers with three spacers. These metal spacers help reduce the surface area, allowing for thicker and more consistent vapor draws. Spacers may be removed conveniently with the provided Indica vape pick. Moving on to the units metal enclosure, while in-use, the Indica does radiates heat. In a real life scenario, a user may be inclined to run the device concurrently for more than 1 session. I found that on the red heating setting, after 25+ minutes of constant run-time, the Indica became very warm to the touch. After 30+ minutes of usage the unit became very warm/hot and after 40+ minutes of constant use, we recommend users not operate their Indica and allow it to cool off. In an everyday scenario with a group, I think we might expect 2 to possibly 3 sessions in succession. Since the unit was only warm to the touch during that duration, I feel the Indica passed my test. Furthering the heat discussion, the lid containing the herbs and metal spacers  are extremely hot and should not be removed until the Indica cools down; I would recommend using the Indica vape pick to fully remove both.   Cleaning the Indica–a task easily done, but not a chore which impedes the units functionality. Since the power and heat selection components are not in the immediate air path, keeping a routine schedule of maintenance is not a pre-requisite for the Indica.  This feature is great for users who are less meticulous with cleaning and worry about resin inhibiting performance.  While cleaning, I noticed the air path appeared small, but my generic cotton pipe cleaners easily fit within the paths circumference. The stainless steel mouthpiece covering the stainless steel air path unfastens for convenient cleaning as well.  Using a cotton swap with ISO on the bowl and lid removed the final traces of herbs from the device.

One aspect on the design I would like to mention is their incorporation of a magnet at the base of the unit. This magnet allows for the oven lid to be secured while you reload the Indica. A simple feature, but integral to saving the user the frustration of misplacing their lid. Finally, I would like to comment on the exterior finish of the Indica. The reflective surface and subtle logo certainly add to the style and high-end nature of this product. It does attract fingerprints however, and bearing that in mind I would love to see a matte or black version of the Indica in the future.

Battery Testing

I ran three full battery tests on two separate production line units.  The results live up to their sticker claim, an excellent job credit to manufacturer:

  • Cyan setting:  Received 11 cycles(avg. of 10 minutes before auto power-off).  Total duration after a 3hr charge was approx. 100 minutes.
  • Green setting: Received 10 cycles(avg. of 10 minutes before auto power-off).  Total duration after a 3hr charge was approx. 90 minutes.
  • Red setting: Received 9 cycles(avg. of 10 minutes before auto power-off). Total duration after a 3hr charge was approx. 80 minutes.

Thoughts on Results? If you are looking for a vaporizer that can be used throughout the day, the Indica’s battery results are among the best to date in the portable industry. Combined with an ability to function while charging, I am pleased with the continued usage options offered by the Indica Vaporizer. I spoke to the designer regarding the average amount of discharge/recharge cycles users could expect from their Indica?

After he thoughtfully provided the specs for their 2x 900 mAh batteries, we concluded that users could expect an average of 150-250  full charge/discharge cycles from their unit.

This news left room for a follow-up question regarding battery replacement and product warranty. The Indica team reported initial release units will not have replaceable batteries; however the concept is being considered for the future. To give their consumers piece of mind, the Indica team provides a 1 year warranty which covers battery faults and issues.

The Indica is intended to perform over 6 cycles on RED through it’s entire Warranty period. Performance less than this, constitutes eligibility for replacement.

 


 

What’s in the Box?

IMG_5024-1024x682

  • 1 x Lacquered wooden container. Slide out cover with Indica logo burnt on the top
  • 1 x Indica Vaporizer
    • Weight: 159 grams or 5.61 ounces
    • Dimension (inches): 3.15 tall x 2.008 wide x 0.906 deep
    • Capacity:
      • 0.2 grams (Recommended capacity, loosely packed, coarse grind w/ spacer)
      • 0.4 grams (Max capacity, tightly packed, micro grind w/o spacer)
  • 1 x Instruction Manual
  • 1 x US Wall Power Adapter with USB input
  • 1 x Male USB Mini 5 port to Male USB Type A
  • 1 x Velvet protective pouch
  • Accessories Kit
    • 1 x Wire brush cleaner
    • 1 x Replacement Indica oven lid
    • 2 x Indica vape pick
    • 3 x Metal spacers
    • 5 x Pipe cleaner
    • 5 x Screens

Heat Settings

IMG_5026-1024x682  Cyan –  171C or 340F

 

Blue – 181C or 358F

 

Green – 191C or 376F

 

Purple –  201C or 294F

 

Red – 211C or 412F

 

 

Cost and Availability

indica_logo

The Indica Vaporizer has a MSRP of $199.97 

  • Domestic shipping to the USA is FREE.
  • International shipping is available at the determined rates.
  • For ordering information, product details and accessories: Please visit the manufacturers website.

 


The Final Verdict

If you are in the market for a portable vaporizer, desiring something that looks great alongside your smart phone and designer shades… The Indica has got your back. Masking the appearance as a lighter lends to the devices discretion. The Indica’s performance rivals other portables in $200 price range. The flavor quality and vapor production will make this device an easy favorite for fans of flavor and cloud chasers alike. The build design is solid and accidentally dropping the unit, would not have adverse effects on performance. The weight and size dimensions make it convenient for carrying in your pocket. The capacity options provided with the spacers allow for both large and small bowls, something which I am personally a fan. Coming from a manufacturing industry background, the Indica team has taken years of experience to bring their vision to the portable vaporizer community. Active research, producing beta units, taking feedback from the community and turning this vaporizer into an iterative project all show the dedication poured into the effort. Earlier versions of the unit had maximum heat settings below 400F. By engaging the community, the designers gathered feedback requesting higher heat output and implemented those changes. The proof is  there, making a device that meets the specification of the community and you have made a vaporizer I want. The Indica excels where many of my other portables units falter and has proven to have a place in my regular rotation.

Liked:

  • Taste is excellent, no evidence of combustion.
  • Vapor produced is very dense.
  • No need to mix herbs, evenly browned ABV at finish.
  • Durable enclosure & Compact design.
  • Over a hour and a half of active run time.
  • Functions while recharging & May be recharged via USB.

Disliked:

  • Removing herbs requires the vape pick.
  • Oven lid and spacers are hot if removed after a session.
  • After three 30 minutes of continuous use, the unit’s exterior is hot.

 

Unboxing and Usage Video 

 

Unboxing

 

Usage

Former Usage Video I produced while working at another blog

 


Tarzan Boy

About Tarzan Boy

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Vaping since 2000, I'm a friend to the community and advocate of healthy living.

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  1. how would you say it compares to the ascent, in battery life, vapor production (smoothness, thickness), efficiency (since theyre both conduction and constantly cooking, is indica better at wasting less vapor?) and maintenance/upkeep? thanks for the great detailed review!
    (oh also, I thought i remembered hearing about a lifetime warranty? what if the battery fails after a year? am i just left with a brick since this version doesnt have user-replaceable batteries yet?)

    swan / Reply
    • Truthfully I havent given my Ascent as much love as I should… But, I will try to answer as best I can from my last experience. In terms of battery life I never performed a true QA run for the ascent, they sticker a 120 run time and the ascent functions while being charged. Since the Indica had only 5 heat setting I ran two separate units side by side and on the Green (Middle) setting the Indica lasts 90 minutes and on their lowest setting 100 minutes. Since I am not sure whether davinci makes their claim on the mean, max or min the difference between the MAX on the indica in Cyan setting is 100min the difference between the numbers is about 20min.

      The vapor production from the ascent is probably what stopped me from using it regularly. I hate to say it but for something which requires so much herbs the vapor density was not to my liking. Especially after using a Solo for so long. The Indica’s vapor density is better than the ascent but you would need to draw longer. There is less restriction than using a solo and the experience is more liken to drawing off your Pax.

      The Indica wins with efficiency, if you go for the Ascent you absolutely need to buy glass flowers(which act as tampers). We interviewed davinci and they claimed to be working on a glass sombrero, which was later canned. The Indica, on the other hand, provides 3 metal spaces (I only use one at a time, the rest are spares). These spacers help for an even cook, better vape density, and more economical packing. Both Indica and Ascent are a lil cumbersome to load: The Ascent doesnt sit up right, and the Indica’s bowl is narrow.

      Maintenance and upkeep isnt very hard, not like the Pax for example which right now is giving me issues. I would rate the Ascent and Indica on par with cleaning but the ascent features glass and ceramic where the Indica has a metal oven and metal airpath. Cleaning my ascent the glass downstem collects a lot of resin and is very thin in some areas. I attempted to remove the downstem with my fingernail and broke it. Granted in hindsight it could have been pushed out, but in terms of frailty the Ascent requires more care of the two.

      As for the warranty I was very interested in this too Im going to paste the interaction I had with the manufacturer:

      Indica: Currently, the batteries, two of them, are not replaceable by the user, but later models are likely to offer this option. It’s in design mode so please do not hold me to it at this time, but a strong possibility. With the warrantee now one year, The Indica battery life should match up. Hope this helped.

      Me: Would you recommend that buyers warranty their unit at 11 months. My only concern with non-replaceable batteries is… What happens after 250+ cycles in year two of ownership? Can you please elaborate if you intend to offer a battery replacement program.

      Indica: The Warrantee will be recorded, and matched up with the purchaser and the unit’s serial # when it is first received. We’ll provide an online process to quickly give the consumer initial registration /support which will directly tie to the serial # of each unit to establish a historical database.

      The Indica is intended to preform over 6 cycles on RED through it’s entire Warrantee period. Performance less than this, constitutes eligibility for replacement.

      If an Individual is Vaping over (6) ten minute sessions a day, for over 250 consecutive days, recharging after battery depletion, we’ll need to evaluate if this truly constitutes normal every day usage. A very good Question.

      Let me know if you have any follow-up questions, sorry I had to rush a reply I(Tarzan_boy) and King are making our preparations to attend the Denver Cannabis Cup for 4.20

      Tarzan Boy / (in reply to swan) Reply
      • No rush, very comprehensive, thanks dude!

        I actually had decided on a solo a couple months ago and do love it, but lately its been going back and forth between me and the seller with defect/correct model issues, so I picked up a used Ascent a couple weeks ago bc i had been curious about it for a while now and wanted something to use in the meantime (my first was a thermovape T1). It did help me confirm that I made the right choice with the solo for overall satisfaction, so i do plan on flipping it once that situation is sorted out.

        Anyway since i’ve given up combustion i do like the idea of having a few vapes to hop around between, and a conduction super-portable could compliment the convection solo nicely (my real dream is for the Grasshopper, really bummed i missed the indiegogo on that one). What you mention with the Pax is part of why I’ve ignored it entirely (seems pretty last gen with many missing features), but yeah the lack of removable batteries with the current Indica is what worries me with the one year warranty… it does seem that they are an earnest company though (read through FC) and I’d like to think they would work with customers to offer some sort of thing that won’t leave us with a brick after 18 months…

        Thanks again and happy 420, have a great time in Denver (like im sure you will)

        swan / (in reply to Tarzan Boy) Reply
        • “… a conduction super-portable could compliment the convection solo nicely”
          I agree the Indica performs real nicely in the departments of vapor density and flavor. And most importantly I dont need to open it up and mix the herbs to get an even ABV =)

          “…my real dream is for the Grasshopper, really bummed i missed the indiegogo on that one”
          If you check on the reddit sub there are people who will trade their preorder of the grasshopper b/c they will be away from their college P.O Box during the summer =)

          “…it does seem that they are an earnest company though (read through FC) and I’d like to think they would work with customers to offer some sort of thing that won’t leave us with a brick after 18 months…”
          The feedback from people who have interacted with the manufacturer as well as myself can confirm this. I’m inclined to believe they are going to stick by their product but would like to see an official response whether users should warranty at 11mo 29 days.

          Since you have an Ascent have you tried using glass flowers?
          Image Link for Reference http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/91z5QOCgEmL._SL1500_.jpg
          _____

          Thanks for the well wishing enjoy your holiday as well! Thanks for taking the time to read and share your questions.

          Tarzan Boy / (in reply to swan) Reply
  2. […] IndicaVapor.com // Our Indica Vaporizer Review […]

  3. How does this product compare to the Pax? I’m either going to buy an Indica or a Pax and I would greatly appreciate your opinion. Thanks.

    Matthew / Reply
  4. Great review! How does the Indica Vaporizer hold up against the Pax? I’m either going to buy the Pax or the Indica and would love your help on my final decision. Your opinion would be greatly appreciated! Thanks

    Matthew / Reply

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