In May, we reviewed the Dr. Dabber SWITCH and said that it was one of the best concentrate vaporizers we had ever smoked out of before. That being said, the final review score was a 4.8/5, earning it the Wikileaf Gold Seal of Approval – a great rating, but not perfect. In our review (see below) we mentioned that there were a few small details that, if improved upon, would make the SWITCH the perfect e-rig.
We also made some guesses in our last article as to what accessories you could buy to improve your SWITCH experience. Lucky for us, we ran into the Dr. Dabber team at Seattle Hempfest this year, and they were kind enough to send us a few attachments that could potentially solve those issues and bridge the gap to perfection. Here’s what they sent us:
- A fresh Dr. Dabber SWITCH – $399.95
- Ball Attachment – $119.95
- Decanter Carb Cap – $99.95
- Bubble Carb Cap – $19.95
The SWITCH in conjunction with the Ball Attachment and Decanter Carb Cap easily becomes a 5/5, earning it the honor of being the first Wikileaf Top Tier rated product. However, whether or not spending an extra $200+ for an already great product to become a perfect product is actually worth it is up to you (and your bank account.)
For ease of comparison, I’m only going to speak on the improvements that are made by adding the aftermarket attachments. I’m going to talk about the areas of improvement on the SWITCH, and how the attachments solve them.
My biggest concern with the build quality of the SWITCH was the carb cap. I snapped the dabber off of the top of the carb before I even used it for the first time, and the flat cap only has a small hole that acts as a carb on it. This results in less than optimal airflow from the bowl to the glass attachment. The Decanter Carb Cap has a much sturdier design and has a larger, centrally located carb that allows for easy manipulation of airflow. The cap also comes with a rubber seal that sits on the top of the base. When you rest the carb cap on top of the rubber seal, it creates a vacuum, so the only air coming in is directly from the top of the cap. The positive effects are two-fold:
- With more concentrated airflow, you’re able to get a milkier dab.
- Being able to directionally control the air intake means you can ensure that your concentrate is using the total surface area of the bowl, meaning you’re dabbing more efficiently. It also means you aren’t burning the last remnants of your oil on the hottest point of the surface, so you have consistent flavor throughout the dab.
If the $100 price tag for a carb cap is out of the question, I would say that the Bubble Cap is a good, significantly cheaper substitute. It’s not nearly as effective at controlling airflow as the Decanter Carb Cap is, but the decanter cap also isn’t nearly as necessary to a good hit as something like the Ball Attachment is.
Okay, so hear me out. I’m allowed to make mistakes, and I’m allowed to say I was wrong – which is exactly what I’m doing right now. In my previous review of the Dr. Dabber, I scored the SWITCH a 10/10 for the hit and high experience. However, after having experienced an even better hit with the Ball Attachment, I realized that the hit on the stock glass piece couldn’t be a 10. If I had to regrade the SWITCH knowing what I know now, it would have gotten a 9/10 for two reasons:
- The ball attachment has a much bigger, and more open chamber, which allows for a greater amount of vapor to build in the chamber before you inhale.
- The normal glass piece relies heavily on four tree percolators to filter your smoke, which limits the maximum potential airflow. It also means that there are more nooks and crannies for residual oil to build up, which again, limits airflow.
After having tried it, I would argue that the Ball Attachment is almost a non-negotiable purchase if you want to maximize your hit potential.
The only issue I had with maintaining the Dr. Dabber SWITCH was how often you had to clean it (because of the aforementioned percolators.) Those bad boys are narrow and not at all easily accessible. If you fall even remotely behind on cleaning your piece, you would have to do a soak for a couple of hours to break up the globs stuck inside. The Ball Attachment doesn’t have these percs, so the maintenance isn’t a real issue. A light clean once a week (versus having to do a heavy clean every two days) is more than enough to still have a quality hit every time.
Are the SWITCH Attachments Worth It?
The SWITCH + Decanter Carb Cap + Ball Attachment is the most ideal setup. But that setup is going to run you ~$620 before tax. So now we come back to the question: Is it worth it? I would say yes, but if you cant afford to buy the whole setup in one shot, then there is an order of importance that I think you should observe.
Obviously, the first thing you need to focus on purchasing is the SWITCH itself. It’s the most expensive component, but it also contains most of what you need for a really good high. Remember, just the base model scored a 4.8/5. If I adjusted that score for what I know now about the Ball Attachment, then it would be a 4.6/5, which still earns it the Gold Seal of Approval. The first attachment that I would recommend buying is the bubble cap. It’s only $20, and while you’re saving up for the other pieces, it does a great job of drastically improving your sesh.
The next piece you should focus on getting is the Ball Attachment. It has the greatest impact on the quality of your vapor and is the one attachment I will never use the SWITCH without again. Once you have the Ball Attachment, THEN you should get the Decanter Carb Cap. That’s the icing on the cake.
The Dr. Dabber SWITCH
Last month, Dr. Dabber sent us the SWITCH to try out. If you’ve never heard of the Dr. Dabber SWITCH, prepare to have your mind blown. With a price tag of $399.95, Dr. Dabber calls the SWITCH the next generation of vaporizer technology. After a month of “testing” the product (getting really high) I’m finally ready to share my thoughts on this beautiful piece of machinery.
The first thing you need to know about the Dr. Dabber SWITCH is that there are no exposed heating elements and no coils or wires involved in the heating process. Most vaporizers fall into one of two categories: conduction (the heating element comes into direct contact with the cannabis and causes the cannabinoids to vaporize) or convection (the heating element warms up the air around the cannabis, causing the cannabinoids to vaporize.) The Dr. Dabber SWITCH does neither.
What Separates The Dr. Dabber SWITCH From Other Vaporizers?
Instead of either of these options, Dr. Dabber SWITCH uses induction technology, which takes the technology that makes wireless charging a possibility and applies it to the vaporizer. There are a few advantages to using induction over conduction or convection:
- The heat-up time is insanely fast. Only about 3 seconds pass from the time you push the heat button to the time the SWITCH is ready to hit, and that’s on a cold start.
- Because there are no wires involved in the heating process, the electronic parts of the SWITCH can be completely isolated from the part of the SWITCH that actually gets hot. Since there’s no point of contact between the wires and the chamber, the damage that is common among other vapes (fumes and heat damaging or shorting out wires and atomizers) can be completely avoided.
- This also prevents users from burning themselves on the SWITCH. The parts are so isolated, well reinforced, and insulated, that the only external signs of heat you have are the color-coded lights on the SWITCH and the vapor forming inside. You can’t feel the heat from the outside of the rig at all. My first time using it, I couldn’t tell if it was heating up. Between how quickly it was ready and how cool the SWITCH was to the touch, I didn’t believe it was ready to hit. But boy was I wrong.
Hit / High Experience – 10/10
In my experience, this is a much better device to use with concentrates than with flower. I’ve done a lot of dabs in my life, and none of them have been as smooth or as flavorful as the ones that I’ve hit from the Dr. Dabber SWITCH. This is even more impressive when you consider that most of the time, I dab on the highest temperature setting.
For the longest time, in my eyes, quartz bangers have been the best way to actually taste the terpenes in your concentrate. Titanium isn’t even in the race. But my perception of what’s possible when it comes to flavor profile in concentrates has been complete shifted. Yesterday, I smoked some Lemonder from Seattle’s Private Reserve (already a really tasty strain), and the vapor from the Dr. Dabber tasted like I was inhaling Country Time lemonade powder. I’ve done nothing but rave about how smooth the vapor is. All of my friends who used to be afraid to dab because of how harsh the hit can be have used and approved of the Dr. Dabber SWITCH, and that’s the real testament. When people who don’t dab can hit the Dr. Dabber without coughing or complaining, that’s when you know the vapor is good.
Build Quality – 4.5/5
The SWITCH comes in 3 basic pieces:
- The base, which is the power source of the vaporizer and where the chamber is located to put your cannabis flower or concentrate.
- The glass percolator attachment.
- A carb cap with attached dabber (you’re definitely going to want to buy the directional carb cap once it’s no longer sold out.)
Dr. Dabber SWITCH is ergonomically designed from the ground up. The base of the vaporizer is wider than the middle, killing two birds with one stone; 1. The wide base makes it stable and hard to knock over (without just blatantly bumping into it at full force), and 2. The narrower midsection makes it easy to grip without the risk of dropping. The entire base also has a rubber coating on it, making it resistant to slippery hands.
The glass attachment also has a fairly wide base to it, so it’s pretty stable when sitting on its own, detached from the SWITCH base. It’s also lightweight, so it doesn’t throw off the balance of the vaporizer when it’s resting while completely put together.
The last piece of the SWITCH is the carb cap with the attached dabber. I’m pretty sure that the entire carb cap (including the dab loader) was made out of glass, which in my opinion, was pretty dumb. I didn’t even get to use the dab loader side of the cap. My first attempt at dabbing, I accidentally (and very lightly) dinged the end of the dabber against the side of the SWITCH, and the loader attachment snapped clean off. If it wasn’t made purely out of glass, or if the stem had been a little thicker, it probably wouldn’t have snapped. Considering how much effort went into making the rest of the SWITCH stoner proof, it’s disappointing that this didn’t extend to carb cap.
But that’s not too big of a deal. If you want to replace the carb cap with the same one, it’s only $19.95. However, that’s not what I would do. If you have the money to spend on a better accessory, I would recommend either the bubble cap (same price as the regular cap) or the directional carb cap ($99.95). Both give you greater control of the airflow inside the induction cup, which allows for more even distribution of heat and better vapor production.
Look And Design – 5/5
The SWITCH is easily the sleekest and most modern smoking device I’ve ever had the pleasure to use. Even the packaging is futuristic, with a black and blue colorway that extends all the way to the SWITCH itself. The box it comes in has a carrying handle, and everything fits into the foam cutout perfectly, but I necessarily call this a mobile-friendly device. I can’t picture any scenarios where it would be convenient to carry the case around to use the Dr. Dabber outside of your home, even though it does hold a charge and doesn’t need to stay plugged in to use. The front of the vaporizer is very simple. There is a switch that can sit in one of three states:
- If the switch is flipped to the left, then the heating settings are optimal for concentrates.
- If it’s sitting neutral (in the middle) then the device is turned off.
- If it’s flipped to the right, then the heating settings are optimized for vaporizing flower.
Above the on/off switch is a button that activates the heating element with a plus and a minus button on either side of it, and above that is a row of five LED lights. When you press either the plus or minus button, the arrangement of the lights tells you how high your temperature is (5 is the highest, 1 is the lowest.) You can press either button to cycle through the preset power settings, but honestly, I leave mine on 5 for the most part. There are also advanced heating settings, but the preset quick start settings are good enough for me. If you’re interested in exploring the advanced settings, there are cards with a guide to each temperature secured in the bottom of the SWITCH (the bottom is accessible via a removable magnetic lid.)
When you decide you’re finally ready to take a hit, all of your queues are the colored LED’s that are in the SWITCH. After you push the middle button, the vaporizer glows red to indicate that the chamber is heating up. A few seconds later, it will switch to green to indicate that the temperature has been reached and it’s time to smoke. When it starts cycling through colors again, it’s done heating. There are other colors as well. Read through the manual for a full explanation.
Maintenance – 4.5/5
Like I said earlier, I’ve been product testing the SWITCH for the last month, and I’ve found that for a heavy user like myself, I have to clean the percolator at least once a week, but preferably twice. The problem is that the tree percs inside of the glass attachment are pretty narrow, so as the vapor filters through the water and cools off, globules of concentrate clog them up pretty easily, and airflow is limited to almost none. Heavy stoners might see this as a downside since no one wants to have to clean their pieces every other day just to get a hit. But I keep my pieces pretty consistently clean anyway, so it isn’t too big of a deal to me. Cleaning the glass is easy – just use the basic isopropyl alcohol and rock salt method. Let that soak for a little bit (maybe 20-30 minutes) and then shake it vigorously for 5-10 minutes. Everything should be sparkly clean once you rinse it out.
If you want to avoid having to clean your glass attachment so often, I would recommend buying the ball glass attachment. There aren’t any tree percs and there’s more volume in the piece for smoke to pass through, so airflow is improved greatly. I have to imagine this would improve the quality of the vapor that you’re hitting as well. Honestly, I wish the ball attachment came standard with the SWITCH. The percolator that comes included is good, but it could be better, which Dr. Dabber obviously realized when they decided to make the ball attachment. It’s sold out right now, but when they restock, one could be yours for the price of $119.95. However, if that price is out of your range, you’ll definitely still get decently high with the included perc.
Final Thoughts – 4.8/5
It’s not that hard to recommend a product that you use every day, and that’s exactly the scenario that’s going on right. I’ve been forcing everyone to try it once, and I’m pretty sure that in my own social circle, I’ve convinced three people that they need to buy one. A simple easy to use vaporizer with a sleek design and amazing vapor, you won’t be disappointed if you decide to purchase the Dr. Dabber SWITCH. It gets a 4.8 out of 5, earning it the Wikileaf Gold Seal of Approval.
We determine final product ratings by adding up the individual category scores (which total to 25 points) and dividing it by 5 to give you a 5-star rating scale.