Hey guys, Sneaky Pete here and today I want to bring you a review of the new Arizer Air MAX. Arizer is a Canadian brand and they are one of the originals, they’ve been around for over 15 years and have a solid reputation for making high quality and long lasting devices.
I made my original Arizer Air review video in 2014 and it was one of my very first portable vaporizers, then the Arizer Air 2 came out in 2017 with some serious improvements, so let’s take a look at the new Arizer Air MAX in detail and check out what’s new this time.
Slick looks and small form
The Air MAX has a shiny brushed finish in a beautiful dark grey colour. I think compared to the plastic body of the Air 2 it has a much more mature look and it’s a marked improvement. On the top of the device is a swing out plastic cover that fits over the bowl to keep it clean and free of debris when not in use. Inside the stainless steel bowl there are four air intake ports, as well as the o-rings which secure the glass stem where the flower is held. It has an upper black plastic section around the heater similar to the Air 2, but with this new grey finish it blends in much nicer and fits better on the seam of the device as well.
Rather than having the buttons and screen all in a vertical row on the front like on previous models, they are now distributed around the device. The screen is still on the front, the power/menu button has moved to the left side, the plus and minus buttons are on the right side, and the USB-C charging port is on the back. I was concerned that splitting everything up would make it awkward to use, but I find the new configuration is actually much more natural to use.
The Air MAX body is round and is a nicely pocketable size, it measures in at 5” tall without the glass stem, with a diameter of about 1.25”, and it weighs about 160g. You will need a glass stem inserted to use the device, which adds about 10.5 g and 2 inches of total height. It’s very similar in size to the Air 2, standing only about half a centimetre taller, and happily you can use any of your Air 2 glass accessories with the Air MAX.
What’s in the Box?
I love that it includes a water pipe adapter
The Air MAX comes in a significantly smaller box which is always nice to see, although this time Arizer doesn't include a travel pouch like they did with previous models, but personally I’m not upset that it’s gone. Inside you’ll find a nice manual that gives you all the information you’ll need, the Air MAX itself, the battery, and a USB-C charger with a wall adapter.
In terms of glass, you get a 70 mm stem, a 14 mm water pipe adapter (which I absolutely love to see included), and a glass aroma dish with some botanicals in case you are into that sort of thing.
They also include a stainless steel stirring tool and four stainless steel screens, which are optional to use, and silicone travel tube containers for all of the glass, so you can travel with your stems preloaded if you want, with the glass remaining protected.
Battery Life and Charging
About 135 minutes of battery life per charge
By unscrewing the bottom of the Air MAX you will gain access to the removable battery, and the first thing you’ll notice is that the battery is huge. The walls of the device are super thin, though still plenty rigid, and they essentially exist to house this big ol’ battery and nothing more. Instead of using a standard 18650 battery, the Air MAX uses a larger 26650 battery, which massively improves the battery-life of the device. From the Air 2 you would usually get around 90 minutes of battery life, while the new Air MAX will give you about 135 minutes. This is a substantial improvement which boosts the convenience of use and for some people will be reason enough alone to upgrade.
Charging is thankfully now handled via USB-C, the included cable and wall adapter is the ideal method, as it will charge faster than it would by plugging it into a laptop or battery bank. One of the great things about USB charging is the fact that you can charge it pretty much anywhere while on the go now that USB-C cables are pretty much everywhere, so it’s very handy. You can also remove the battery and charge it externally if you want, but the Air MAX has built-in protections that prevent overcharging when you use the wall adapter, so personally I would just leave the battery inside and charge through the port.
Under 60 seconds
The heat-up time has appreciably improved, bringing it down to under 60 seconds, although it’s not fully ready for use as soon as it’s reached temperature. When it beeps to notify you that it’s at temperature, either take some very slow first draws, or give it another 15 seconds to allow your material to warm up for optimal vapour production.
How to Use the Arizer Air MAX
About as simple as they get
Arizer devices are known for being easy to use, and the Air MAX is about as simple as they get. Flower goes into either the glass stem or the water pipe adapter, and I find the best way to load it is to completely fill the bowl with lightly packed material, then use your finger to gently press it down a little. For your first few sessions, I would recommend heating the Air MAX up first and then inserting the glass stem, or else it can be a little tight.
To turn the device on, hold the power and plus buttons simultaneously, you will see the countdown timer begin on the screen, keep holding the buttons until you hear a beep and the device turns on. When you are ready for your session, pressing the up or down arrow button will make the device begin to heat up to your previously set temperature. If you want to adjust the temperature to something different, the Air MAX has precise single-degree temperature control which is operated by pressing the up or down buttons, it can also be altered in 10 degree increments by pressing and holding them. When it arrives at the set temperature it will beep twice, then I would recommend waiting about 15 seconds for the material to warm up, slowly inhaling, this one works best with a long and steady inhalation. When you’re done, just hold the power button to turn the device off, or you can let the session timer do it automatically.
The Air MAX allows you to adjust a number of settings, the power-on beep has three different volumes, or you can turn it off altogether, same deal with the temperature alert. You can set the auto shut-off timer between five and 15 minutes in one minute increments, if you don’t do long sessions it makes sense to set this low to conserve battery life. The power-on delay, which prevents you from accidentally turning it on in your pocket, can be set at two, four, six, or eight seconds. The temperature can be displayed in either Celsius or Fahrenheit, and the screen brightness setting can be adjusted from low, to medium, or high.
Display inversion is a very clever idea
One cool thing about the Air MAX, and this is probably my favourite new feature, is the automatic display inversion. This makes the display change orientation when you invert the device, so when you turn it upside-down to use the included water pipe adapter, you still see the display up the correct way. I think this is such a clever change and shows great attention to detail by Arizer, I bet we’ll see this on other vaporizers in the future.
Another great new feature is dark mode, this is designed to be stealthy, both in terms of the beep volume and the display brightness. This will be excellent for anyone looking to hit a session as discreetly as possible. To turn the device on straight into dark mode, hold the power and the minus buttons, instead of the plus button, and it will be in dark mode after power-on delay. In dark mode, rather than having words or numbers on the screen, it displays an icon in the corner to communicate things like heating up and being ready for use. It also gives you a more limited menu of options to choose from, for example it doesn’t give you a high-volume alert option since that’s not very stealthy.
You can switch back-and-forth between normal mode and dark mode at any time by holding the power and minus buttons simultaneously. Even if you don’t think the dark mode would be beneficial to you, a neat and super useful detail is that you can use it as a second preset temperature slot. For example, if you like to use your device dry at 370°, you can use normal mode to store that temperature, then use dark mode to store a higher temperature like 420° for when you use it through a water pipe. This will save you a lot of temperature adjustment time if you regularly switch between dry and wet use.
Convection with some conduction creates tasty clouds
The Air MAX uses convection heating, combined with some conduction coming from the warm bowl, to produce very tasty and pleasant vapour. The glass stems have no effect on the flavour, meaning you’re receiving only the pure terpene profile, delivered in abundance. I find sessions are quite smooth at around 375°F, but above that it does get a bit warm. It’s a shame that Arizer doesn’t include a longer glass stem, like you get with a Solo 2, it would have greatly reduced the vapour heat at higher temperatures. If you have a longer Arizer stem lying around, thankfully it will fit perfectly into the Air MAX.
The cloud production is pretty good at the higher temperatures, but this isn’t a massive and thick cloud type of device. It’s designed more for session sipping than single hit ripping, so if you need really thick hits you’re going to want to use it in the higher temperature range. The effects come through nicely, with those longer sessions and convection heating I find myself nicely toasted when the session is through. I consider the Air MAX more in line with an Arizer Solo 2 in terms of the vapour production, overall the heater does feel like it pumps out more than the previous version, it just wouldn’t be my first pick for a cloud chaser.
Efficiency, Convenience, and Cleaning
Convenient to operate and simple to clean
The amount of flower that you load into a stem isn’t huge, but it can give you a few solid sessions, especially when you ramp the temperature up between sessions. At higher temperatures the ABV will become a nice crispy brown, but not overdone.
It’s a very convenient device to operate, and the glass stems are easy to use. The included travel tubes are very handy because you don’t want to travel with a stem in the device, it’s a risk for breakage. I also really like that the new dark mode lets you set a second temperature, it makes switching between wet and dry use a breeze.
The stems are simple to clean, a quick soak in isopropyl alcohol is all they need. You don’t really need to maintain the device itself, the oven will of course get a little dirty over time, but that is normal and to be expected.
Overall, I think the Air MAX has a fantastic design. The stem system is very functional but also easy to maintain, and it gives you a pure glass set-up, unlike many other vaporizers which include plastic in their air-path.
The battery life has seen a significant increase compared to the previous model, which makes it a much more viable travel unit. The newly added USB-C charging means it charges up significantly faster. You still get a removable battery that you can swap out while on-the-go so you don’t have to recharge it.
The controls are designed to be easy to understand and use, while still allowing for a lot of customisation. I love the new automatic screen inversion, this seems like such a no-brainer feature, but we’ve all been looking at upside down devices for a long time now, it shows that Arizer put thought into the operation of the device and its real world use.
I really wish it came with a longer stem in addition to the short one. I really do appreciate the addition of the water pipe adapter, I think that’s awesome and would like to see it done more often, but the difference between a longer stem and the shorter stem is noticeable when you’re using the device dry, and I much prefer the longer one.
I don’t love the threads on the bottom cap. It feels like a tight threading pattern, and it’s easy to get gunk in the threads. Make sure you wipe it out regularly, as it will feel crunchy if there’s anything in it, especially if you unscrew it often.
It has a similar amount of draw resistance as the rest of Arizers portable lineup. When I go back to back between the Air 2 and the Air MAX, it seems like the Air MAX is a little bit more free, but in general it’s in the same neighbourhood as the Solo 2 and Air 2.
A high-quality portable with excellent battery life and pure vapour
Arizer has built up their reputation over a long period with their quality devices that just keep going. They focus on keeping things simple and highly functional, and the new Air MAX fits well into that mould. The all-glass stems give you a nice pure vapour-path with fantastic flavour, they’re also easy to preload when you utilise the travel tubes, and super easy to maintain. The controls remain straightforward, while giving you more customisation options than most devices offer, and dark mode is a cool feature that’s going to be super handy for some users. The auto screen inversion is a brilliant little addition that I would like to see on more vaporizers.
I would be happier if the package included a long stem and the draw resistance was lower, but overall I think this is a fantastic evolution of an already great device. Anyone looking for a high-quality and very portable device, with excellent battery life and pure vapour is going to be very happy with his new model.
Thanks so much for reading and watching guys, I really appreciate it.
Keep it green, keep it sneaky!