We recently had the privilege to try out and review the Obsidian Bubbler for the Volcano Vaporizer. The refined Obsidian (an upgrade from the original Magma bubbler) which bills itself as the premier percolation experience for the Volcano Vaporizer, sits atop the Volcano filling chamber for either the Classic or Hybrid Volcano and adds an extra level of purity to your Volcano’s vapor when you hit the fan and fill your bag.
With many dry herb vaporizers from the entry level G Pen Elite to the $400 Mighty+ adding adapters for use with water pipes, it only makes sense the pioneer desktop vaporizer have a water option too.
The Obsidian is the second edition of Magma Industries’ first release – The Magma, which functions in the same manner by purifying your Volcano’s vapor through water. While the Magma is a great way to give your vapor a boost, the Obsidian is a step up which comes with some refinements such as a lower chamber which helps prevent any spillage into the Volcano unit and a fried Volcano. A huge reason some may avoid placing a glass bubbler over their Volcano in the first place.
The Obsidian comes in a nice little package with some safety precautions, directions and 3 O-Rings. It is very light in weight and sturdy to the touch; hand blown of high grade borosilicate glass. The Obsidian is not pumped out by a large corporation with money to blow on fancy packaging and when you get that you will see. However what it lacks in presentation it makes up for with a high quality finished product.
Using the Obsidian
- Fill the the top of the Obsidian about an ⅛ of an inch above the top compartment’s holes
- Remove the Storz & Bickel OEM O-ring from your Easy Valve Filling Chamber and replace with the red Obsidian O-Ring.
- Place the Obsidian a top your Easy Valve Filling Chamber and then onto your Volcano
- Throw on your Easy Valve Bag, wait for the heat up, hit the fan and get ready to party
*Do make sure to exercise caution when grabbing for the Obsidian after use, as it can be hot
Obsidian Changes to Vapor
The testing we did with the Digital Volcano turned all the way up showed hot air from the easy valve air maxing out at 440℉, when we added around .2 grams of herb and took a readout of the top of the easy valve with vapor coming out we got readout of 317℉. That is very hot vapor when you think about a Starbucks coffee coming in at around 160 ℉. However when the Obsidian was applied the temperature dropped to the 160’s.Yes this is still very hot, but most will not be using their Volcano at 446℉ and also these measurements were taken direct from the outlets on the Easy Valve and the Obsidian respectfully, they were not the actual temperatures one would inhale given the cooling that occurs with the vapor sitting in the bag. However this only makes the near 50% decrease in temperature from using the Obsidian more impressive.
The humidity readings showed even greater promise and trust us, we really felt the humidity while inhaling the Volcano bags. In testing relative humidity (RH) , the ratio of the partial pressure of water vapor to the equilibrium vapor pressure of water at a given temperature, the Easy Valve expelled vapor with 3.6% RH, when the Obsidian was applied that number jumped to 96.7% So for a water adapter that boasts increasing humidity of your vapor, the Obsidian sure does the job.
Personally, I was not a fan. I do know others who swear by the Obsidian and will not use their Volcano without it. To me too much flavor is lost and there is this swampy humid texture that while smooth just didn’t feel right. So yes the Obsidian will cool your vapor’s temperature and add moisture, but the level of moisture and the water droplets accumulating in the bag over repeated sessions took away from what I love about the Volcano.
A Savior to Dry Buds
An unfortunate part about vaporizers, especially the Volcano, is that herb freshness plays a large role in your vapor texture. Dryer herb will cause more choking and throat irritation. Lucky for me I had some very old and dried herbal shake around. In doing two bags on 399 degrees ℉ the bag without the Obsidian was full bodied. It was not hot nor cool but did choke me up a tad too much from what one expects from the Volcano.
When applying the Obsidian, the humidity and temperature change were noticeable. It did not cause any irritation whatsoever and made inhaling the bags contents much more comfortable.
If you have any throat irritations or medical conditions which make inhaling hard, the Obsidian is a no brainer and will make taking down bags alot easier on your throat or sinuses.
One aspect which Magma Industries improved from the Magma to the Obsidian was the free flow and clear glass allowing you to better see when your unit is in need of cleaning and where to clean. I personally have had no issues with throwing it into some Orange Chronic, and boiling it in a pot of water after. Water stuck in the bottom overfill compartment is easy to work out and once the bulk is out hitting it with some forced air did the rest.
Made in the USA
Undoubtedly the best part about the Obsidian is that it is designed and made by hand in the United States, by a lover of the Volcano Vaporizer. When Ryan Jones realized that the Volcano Vaporizer needed a water adapter and one was not currently on the market he boot strapped it from concept to prototype, took it to market and has since refined it, releasing the Obsidian. So far the feedback for both the Magma and Obsidian has been good and we can see why they’re constantly selling out. The Obsidian delivers cooler and smoother vapor from your Volcano Vaporizer adding another level to the world’s most iconic vaporizer. And you are supporting a small business and vapor enthusiast/artisan.
Is the Obsidian Worth It ?
Being made in the United States and by hand of quality borosilicate glass, the Obsidian does cost a pretty penny. There are some hacks out there to apply water filtration to your Volcano Vaporizer however these do vary. For example the Volcano Hybrid Whip adapter offers an amazing Obsidian substitute and will give you better vapor than the Obsidian at a fraction of the cost and with the water purification at the end of the vapor delivery will not cause any water to fill your whip or bag.
This will not work with the Classic or Digital Volcano (or the Hybrid if using bags) and for those valves the only way to get water purified vapor before it fills your bag is the Obsidian Bubbler.
If you love your Volcano the way it is, there is no need for the Obsidian. If you have problems drawing or are coughing when inhaling a bag – The Obsidian will be a game changer.
If you want to make your Volcano active, check out the offerings from Magma Industries