Hey guys, Sneaky Pete here and today I want to bring you a review on the new Puffco Proxy. The Proxy is a brand-new device with a timeless form factor; it is a modular portable concentrate vaporizer designed to look and function like a traditional pipe. But there is way more than meets the eye at first look with the Proxy, I think this is one of the more exciting concentrate products to be released in quite some time. Let’s take an in-depth look at this exciting new device.
The Puffco Proxy is a handheld portable concentrate device, used in the similar fashion as a traditional pipe, but with an engine designed to vaporize concentrate. The coolest part about the Proxy is the modular aspect, meaning that the glass pipe separates from the base, so you can swap out this glass pipe for a plethora of other options, both dry and through water.
So, while the Proxy looks like a pipe, it rather comes with a glass piece emulating a pipe and is designed so you can pick the base out of the pipe and completely change how you use it. When completely assembled, the Proxy is just over 5” long, and then the height of the base unit itself is about 2.5”, so the total height of the proxy will be closer to 3”. It feels incredibly natural in your hand, I really think they nailed it in terms of the dimensions, as well as the weight of the device at around 2.5oz. It has enough heft to feel substantial, but it’s not in the slightest bit heavy or awkward. The glass pipe is flat on the bottom, so it can sit on a table upright while it is heating, loading, or at rest. When you take the base out of the glass, you realize that most of that weight comes from the base. The glass is quite thin when you were holding it on its own, and it’s the base that provides that substantial feeling.
The base is the brains and brawn of the device; this is the battery, the heat control circuitry, the button, the charging port, everything. If you were so inclined, you can even hit the base directly as it has an output hole you could put your mouth over, but I wouldn’t really recommend that. The base features an LED light ring around it, and this isn’t super bright if you are in daylight or similar bright conditions. If you are indoors or in shade whatsoever, it’s good, but if you are in daylight, you’ll need to hold your hand over it to shade it to see the light.
On top of the base, you’ll find the 3-D chamber, and you can twist this out to either clean or even replace it. The 3-D chamber means that this chamber has heating tracers on the wall, so you get a way better and more even heating than if it is only on the floor of the bowl. The 3-D chamber is made from glazed ceramic, hence it is super low maintenance and comes very clean easily even after you run a ton of material through it, if you swab it out after your hit every time.
When you buy the Puffco Proxy, it comes in this excellent zippered case. I love this case because it includes a tonne of room for your stuff. Sometimes, the case only houses the product itself and doesn’t allow you to store concentrate or accessories, whereas this gives you a cavernous magnetically closed storage container which you can put a bunch of stuff in, as well as several other areas for storage. The case has a nice quality zipper, and a safe foam insert for your Proxy to hold it in place during travel. They also include a few of the dual tools as well as a loading tool, and a nice length USB-C to standard USB charging cable.
Battery Life/Charging/Heat up time
The Puffco Proxy charges via USB-C, and the light will illuminate one of three colours when you are charging it, indicating its battery level. When it is at full charge, the light will go off completely to indicate that. For being so small and portable, the Proxy has surprisingly good battery life. When using it at my preferred dry temperature of green, I was able to get exactly the 15 estimated hits that they rate the device at. One of these hits tends to be enough for me, so 15 cycles on one battery charge is totally adequate for a portable device like this.
Being a smaller device, the heat up time takes longer then on something like the Peak Pro, but it still gets to temperature and is ready to go within 30 seconds. It always feels faster to me, but 30 seconds is a reasonable time for a portable either way. I wouldn’t complain if it was a little faster; I would love to see this get down to 20 seconds. Considering the base itself is so small, and the hits spit out a ton of vapour, I think that the battery set up is quite impressive. USB-C recharges the base quickly, and 15 hits is plenty for me in between charges.
How to Use
The Proxy is designed to be super easy to use. It is made to be an excellent product for first time concentrate users, and I think they have easily achieved that. Choosing to shape it like a traditional pipe is part of what makes it easy to use, as people intrinsically understand what a pipe is and how it works. Put the stuff in this part, put your mouth on this part, and inhale after you heat it up.
The Proxy works via a single button that controls everything, and the interface itself is very easy to understand. Hold the button for three seconds to either lock or unlock the device, and when it’s locked you can’t press the button to initiate heating, you must hold the button for three seconds to unlock it and then it’s ready to go. The vibration sort of ramps up as do the lights when you turn it on, it just shows they put time and effort into the overall design of this product rather than making it purely functional.
The Proxy has four built-in temperatures, blue is your lightest, green is my favourite, red I go to when I want to kick it out to that next level, and white I don’t hit myself unless it is through a water piece as I find it too warm. To rotate between temperatures, click the button once, and it will vibrate and change colour to indicate your temperature. Once you have your temperature selected, load your material into the bowl. If you put a minute amount in here, the size of half a grain of rice for example, it will do an excellent job of fully vaping it as the device functions great as a microdoser. Keep in mind if you load in a tiny amount, you’re not going to get a huge amount of vapour, to get those bigger hits you want to load in a decent amount.
Next, snap the carb cap into place, and this makes it great to preload before you go. Put your hit in, close the carb cap, and whenever you want to hit it, you are a double click and 30 seconds away from a good rip. When you are ready to go, double click the button, and the lights will start pulsing and the Proxy will vibrate, indicating that it is heating up to your selected temperature. When you are at temperature, the light will flash and it will double vibrate, and you are ready to hit it. The light will remain on throughout the heating cycle, and then it will turn off and the device will vibrate when your session is complete. It has quite a long session time on it, I find it a little bit long and I wouldn’t complain if it was a bit shorter. It’s best to inhale on the lighter side, rather than ripping it as hard as you can. I really like to do cigar puffs as it fits the aesthetic and vibe of the device, but you can do one slow and steady inhale and it will work just as good. If you like to rip concentrate on the higher side, I would definitely use it on the white temperature, and it also has a boost mode designed for people like yourself.
When the device is in its active heat cycle mode, double click the button to enable boost mode. Boost mode will change the lights to a rainbow colour, and it will both extend the time and increase the temperature of your heat cycle. You can even enable boost mode more than once, though it cautions not to do it more than four times in a row, or it can damage the chamber. When you are done your hit, open the cap, take a Q-tip, and swab out any remnants from the bowl, then repeat as necessary.
When I first saw the Puffco Proxy I was concerned about the fact that it is designed to be used by default without water, as I have always run my concentrate through a water piece. However, I’m happy to say that the device is super smooth at temperature green for sure, and decently smooth on red. Of course, you can remove the base and run this through a water piece, but the portability is one of the things I most like about it, and it is totally a viable piece to use without water.
As you don’t run it through water, as it has a reasonably short vapour path, the flavour is incredible. You get super pure uncoloured flavour, it’s almost more akin to a dry herb terpiness than what I am used to with concentrate, and I really enjoy the flavour profiles I am experiencing in my different strains.
I have read some people say they don’t think it hits hard enough, but for me it hits plenty hard. I don’t even mess with white as red hits hard enough for me, though if you are planning to use it through a water piece primarily then I think white is your best bet.
I like to do smaller concentrate hits as the big hits mess me up too much, and this is pretty much an ideal sort of a device for me. It is strong without being overly strong, but you can simply use a higher temperature or a larger hit if you were looking for a more powerful experience.
If you load a small amount in here, the efficiency is exceptional. There is very little residue left over when you do a small hit, even if you use the lower temperatures. If you are doing large hits, first be sure not to overload it as it can bubble out of the chamber, but you might also want to do boost mode as you really want to consume everything in a single session.
If you are finding a large puddle of residue when you are done, then I would either load in a smaller hit or use a higher temperature. It really couldn’t score much higher in the convenience category, it’s such an easy and pleasant method to consume concentrate. I never thought I would be ripping concentrate mainly dry, but the glass pipe set up does a great job at minimizing the harshness of those dry hits. The interface is dead simple and easy to understand, and the process of using it is second nature.
I would recommend regular maintenance on the base and chamber of the device, as it can get sticky and messy if you don’t take care of it. Make sure to spend the time and clean out the vapour pathway and remove the chamber, as it will get build up in here overtime.
The glass is super easy to clean in isopropyl alcohol, as is the chamber itself, it’s just the base that you must spend any time with. If you are the kind of person who doesn’t like any maintenance whatsoever, I’m not sure if this will be an ideal piece for you, but it only requires minor maintenance if you do it at all regularly.
The first thing I love about the Proxy is how easy it is to use. This is an incredibly approachable concentrate system for somebody new to concentrates, or for anyone who doesn’t want to mess around with torches, bangers, and timers. It takes any guesswork out of how to use concentrate, and they couldn’t make it much easier to figure out.
The modularity of the system cannot be overstated. By itself it is an incredibly compelling piece, but the fact that you can put the base into whatever somebody can dream up completely changes what the device is. This can be a dry piece, it can be a water piece, it’s crazy what artists have done so far, and it hasn’t even been out for very long.
The last thing I love is the vibe and aesthetic. You feel cool hitting this pipe, it has a timeless appeal that goes back many generations. It’s instantly relatable and fits perfect in the hand. Then when you coupled with that the very modern, technological base to juxtapose the classic feel, it makes the overall system super appealing to get involved with.
As soon as I took the base out for the first time, I was disappointed with how thin the glass was. It’s not necessarily criminally thin, but it feels so insubstantial without the base in place. I really think they could use a slightly thicker glass, and it would also be much less breakable if they did.
I am not a huge fan of the button. It works well and doesn’t tend to give you false positives, but it just feels somewhat cheap compared to what the device is trying to achieve, it is too clicky and loud, it doesn’t have a high end feel that matches the rest of the device.
The price feels like it is on the high side of acceptable. You’re paying to be an early adopter for this new technology, I imagine they have high research and development costs as I don’t think this device itself can cost a crazy amount to produce. If it was $250 rather than $300, I think it would feel much more palatable, and it might get there as time goes on.
Overall, I have been super impressed with the Puffco Proxy. The best compliment I can really give it is it has caused me to use concentrates more often whereas I normally use much more flower. It is not only so easy to use, but it is also so enjoyable and somewhat whimsical to use. You feel like a bit of a gentleman while using it, but not in a nerdy way, in a legitimately ‘this is pretty cool’ sort of way. The vapour itself is super tasty and way smoother than I thought it would be from a dry piece, and if you want to turn the temperature up you can certainly spit out some impressive clouds.
I think the base itself could use a little prettying up, I would like to see an upgraded button, as well as much brighter and more interesting LEDs that are highly visible outside like the Peak Pro. I imagine this is going to get drastically improved in the next version, but for me, I would way rather enjoy this from now until the next one comes out, as I think this is a fantastic portable concentrate device, and the modular aspect will only get better over time.
Thanks so much for watching guys I really appreciate it.