“…undoubtedly one of the best 3-in-1 portables that we’ve ever come across.”
SPEED REVIEW (SUMMARY)
The Ascent's 100% glass lined vapor pathway ensures that each and every hit is just as delicious as you'd expect from a high-end portable. Digital temperature control, quick heat up time, ability to vape dried blends as well as concentrates, wide temp range, and reasonable price tag are just some of the reasons why we like this compact portable by DaVinci. We recommend it to anyone in need of a reasonably priced portable that does it all.
*In-depth review continued below.
While some vaporizers offer only a modest range of temperatures to choose from, the Ascent offers a temperature range that spans from zero degrees all the way up to 430 degrees Fahrenheit. This range, 0°F to 430°F, is adjustable in 1 degree intervals, which allows you to set your preferred vaporizing temperature with a high level of precision.
The high end of its temperature spectrum is ideal for vaping concentrates, such as waxes and oils. For dried blends, we’ve found the best vaping temperature to fall between 385°F and 420°F, but that’s something that we suggest you play around with as our preference in this regard may very well differ from your own. Those looking to produce denser vapor will likely find the higher temperatures preferable.
While its digital temperature controls make it easy to select your preferred vaporizing temperature, there’s also an advanced feature that allows for vaping temperature cycles to be programmed into it. What this means is that you can set a series of preferred vaping temperatures to hold during your session and tell it just how long to hold each temperature before changing to the next. For example, you may choose to start your session off with a lower temperature such as 380°F and tell it to hold this temperature for a couple of minutes before jumping up to 395°F for a minute and then finishing things off at 420°F.
Thanks to the OLED display, you’ll know exactly what temperature you’re vaping at and when it’s ready to be used. And with the plus and minus buttons, you’ll be able to quickly and easily adjust the temperature on the fly.
Given the precision, wide range, cycling feature, and ease of use, we can’t help but absolutely adore the Ascent’s temperature control system.
» Heat Up Time
While DaVinci boasts an official heat up time of just 23 seconds, which is based on a set vaporizing temperature of 230°F, we’ve found that the Ascent tends to heat up in approximately 60 seconds. While it’s not the near instantaneous vaporization that we’ve encountered with some vaporizers, particularly liquid-only vapes, it is fast enough to keep us from getting antsy while waiting around for it to heat up. In comparison to other portables designed to vape dry blends, its approximately one-minute heat up time is quite fast and relatively impressive.
» Battery Life
Like most modern portable vaporizers, the Ascent relies on battery power to get the job one. It uses not one, but two 18650 rechargeable lithium-ion batteries to get the job done. These internal batteries, which are not designed to be user-replaceable, are recharged via the charging unit included with every Ascent. Once drained, they take about 3.5 hours to be completely recharged.
When fully charged, the Ascent offers approximately two hours (120 minutes) of continuous use at 375 degrees Fahrenheit. As most sessions are typically much shorter than this, it’s capable of getting most users through the day without requiring a recharge. For us, it typically lasts more than a day before it needs to be recharged.
Tip: If you spend a lot of time on the road, make sure you get the car charger accessory and keep it plugged in so that it’s always ready to go when you are.
» Weight & Size
Weighing in at just 6.8 ounces, this pocket-friendly portable is not the “brick” in your pocket that some portables are. It’s certainly not the lightest, but it is light enough that you’ll hardly notice it in your pocket. And with a width of just 2.24 inches, a height of just 4.47 inches, and a diameter of 1.03 inches, you won’t have any trouble finding a pocket to slip it in.
All in all, it’s about the size of a modern smartphone, only thicker and a bit less wide. So if you’re wondering whether or not it’s truly portable, the answer is yes.
The first Ascent we ever got our hands on worked great, but when we picked up another, we noticed a problem with the battery. As it turned out, some of the early Ascents had battery issues, which were later resolved by the manufacturer, the DaVinci Vaporizer company. In particular, ours had an issue holding a charge. Fortunately, with this issue resolved, we have yet to encounter any other real issues with it. So all things considered, we’re quite pleased with the overall build quality, but there is one other minor issue which is easily resolved: the mouthpiece can prove a bit tricky to extend or remove when the vape is cold and the glass pieces haven’t been cleaned.
The easy fix for this little issue with the mouthpiece sticking is to simply keep it cleaned. But if you’re lazy, it’s dirty, and it is what it is, there’s a quick work around that should loosen things up for you: turn it on, heat it up, and give it a minute. That’s all there is to it.
If you do run into any real issues with your Ascent, be sure to reach out to its manufacturer, the DaVinci Vaporizer company. Between their warranty coverage and their excellent customer service, we can say with a high level of certainty that their team will almost certainly be able to assist you in the resolution of whatever issue you might encounter.
» Cleaning & Maintenance
The Ascent is far from the more difficult portable vaporizer to clean. In fact, it’s actually quite easy to clean and maintain. All you have to do is remove the glass components that compose the vapor pathway, soak them in isopropyl alcohol (ISO), wipe, rinse in water, and let dry. Then take a q-tip or cleaning brush soaked lightly in ISO and use it to clean out the glass-lined ceramic oven. After allowing it some time to dry, we like to execute a dry run in which we power it on and heat it up without any material inside the oven in order to burn off anything leftover from the cleaning process before we use it again. We suggest you do the same.
Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to clean it. Follow this guide to order to help ensure that your Ascent is well a oiled machine that continues to work just as well as it did on the day you got it.
- Remove glass components from vapor pathway
- Soak glass components in isopropyl alcohol
- Clean with q-tip after soaking
- Rinse thoroughly in warm water
- Gently dip q-tip in ISO and use to clean oven
- Allow time to dry
- Execute dry run (heat without blend inserted)
The real benefit here when cleaning is that the parts are easily removed and all glass so all you have to do is soak, wipe, and rinse. This makes cleaning the Ascent an extremely easy task to accomplish.
We suggest cleaning it after every 3-5 uses. But for those using liquids and other concentrates, you may want to clean it more often – especially if you’re not using the lids that come with the glass oil jars because failing to do so can really make a mess of the oven.
» Usage Tips
- In order to avoid getting material where you don’t want it, make a point to leave your ground blend a bit more chunky than you might otherwise leave it after grinding it. Doing so will help keep fine particles from infiltrating your glass components and mouth as the larger pieces of ground material will find themselves unable to pass through the Ascent’s built-in screens (filters). Don’t take this too mean that you should leave your material unground or in large chunks, as doing so will inhibit the vaporization process which relies in part on warm air passing freely through your blend. But rather, just make sure not to grind your dried blends into a dust or fine powder as doing so may result in bits and pieces ending up in your mouth.
- Keep it charged! We can’t stress this enough. While it’s an obvious point, we strongly believe that it’s one worth making because a portable vaporizer with a fully charged battery is a whole lot better than one with a dead battery. So keep yours charged! And if you have to, buy the car charger accessory as it could very well make a world of difference for you.
- Clean it regularly. Keeping up with basic maintenance will help ensure that your Ascent continues to work like it did when you first got it. It doesn’t take much – just some q-tips, isopropyl alcohol, and a cleaning brush. Do it regularly and you won’t notice any loss in performance or added difficulty in use. Be sure to refer to our “Cleaning & Maintenance” section above if you’re not quite sure how to do it.
- Pack it tight for fatter rips. If you want some thick, dense vapor while vaping dried blends, be sure to grind your blend finer than you otherwise would and pack it tighter while you inhale slower on a higher temperature. And be sure to give it some time to roast before you begin to draw.
- When using the liquid oil jars, you can use them with or without the lids they come with. If you don’t use the lids, you’ll have a better vaping experience. But afterwards, it’s rather likely that you’ll have more difficulty cleaning it as things tend to get messy when you don’t use the lids.
- Always be weary of hot components – things you don’t want to touch. While the mouthpiece has never been so warm that we couldn’t touch it, we strongly suggest allowing the vape some time to cool down after using it before handling the glass components with your bare hands. In order to remove the glass oil jar, be sure to use the tool that comes with the device. Keep in mind, the contents of the oil jars can be hot to the touch so be careful when handling.
- If you like to get some really tasty puffs early on in your session, kick things off with a lower temperature and then work your way up as you go. The best way to do this is to use the temperature cycling feature to program in a custom vape session that starts on a low temp and ends on a high one.
- When you’re only looking to pack a little in the heating chamber, you’ll want to use the glass spacers. These little glass pieces are designed to be dropped into the heating chamber and take up the unused space, ensuring that the vaporization process kicks off without a hitch while you conserve your blend by packing only what you need.
Wondering how the Ascent stacks up against the rest of the crowd? You’re not the only one. Below are our Ascent vaporizer comparisons.
- Ascent Vaporizer VS Pax
In comparison to the Ascent, the Pax Vaporizer by Ploom doesn’t quite hold up. We are, for reference, talking about the original Pax, also known as the Pax 1. The much newer Pax 3 is an entirely different story. In comparison to the original, the Ascent is superior. Both vaporize dried blends, but only the Ascent is designed to also vaporize liquids and other forms of concentrates. Both have digital temperature controls, but the Ascent’s temperature controls are far superior. They offer a wider range of adjustment, a cycling feature, and a digital display. Vapor production is also better with the Ascent, which we attribute in part to its all glass vapor pathway. The only area where the Pax really exceeds is in size, but as both are compact enough to be pocket-friendly and portable, the Ascent is the clear winner between the two.
- DaVinci Ascent VS Arizer Solo
While there are obvious differences between these two portables, this comparison is a tough one to make. The Ascent, being newer, is the more advanced of the two. It has more features, improved temperature controls, the ability to vaporize liquid blends, it’s lighter, and it’s more compact. But all these things aside, both are awesome vaporizers that produce excellent vapor. For those who are looking for something more compact with added benefit of being able to vaporize liquids in addition to dried blends, the Ascent is the obvious choice. But for those who are looking for something a bit more rugged with a little less complexity in use, the Solo Vaporizer is where it’s at.
- Ascent VS Firefly Vaporizer
In this comparison, we’re referring to the original Firefly, not the Firefly 2. Simply put, we’re not huge fans of the original Firefly. If we had to choose between the two, we’d definitely go with the Ascent.
- Ascent Vaporizer VS DaVinci
The company behind the Ascent, DaVinci, released their self-titled DaVinci Vaporizer years before the Ascent hit shelves. While it’s fairly old in terms of vape years, it’s still a decent vape for what it costs. But even still, it hardly compares to the likes of the Ascent. If you’re trying to decide which is better, the answer is clearly the Ascent.
- Crafty Vaporizer VS Ascent
When it comes right down to it, the Crafty is just that much better. It might not be as convenient to fiddle with the temperature given that it relies on its smartphone app, but what it lacks in built-in temperature controls it more than makes up for in vapor production. If we had to choose between the two, we’d definitely go with the Crafty.
- DaVinci IQ VS Ascent
There aren’t many vaporizers that can blow the Ascent out of the water, but the IQ manages to do just that. But this shouldn’t come as all that much of a surprise given that the DaVinci IQ is the latest portable vaporizer from the folks over at Organicix. While it could be said that the IQ builds on the success of the Ascent, it’s by no means riding the coattails of its predecessor as it is an entirely new vape in its own right. Just about the only thing that it doesn’t improve upon is the Ascent’s ability to vaporize a variety of different blend types, including liquids. But while the IQ isn’t designed to vape liquids, it basically does just about everything else better than the Ascent. It’s smaller, vapes better, and it’s easier to use. But there is a catch, it’s a bit more expensive. Still, if you have the extra cash, it’s definitely worth coughing up given that the IQ is clearly the superior vaporizer.
There are quite a few accessories for this particular vape so we’ve opted to share them in the form of a list, which you can find below.
- Universal AU Power Adapter – For those who live in Australia, DaVinci has your needs in mind. Subsequently, they’ve created a power adapter that can be used to charge the Ascent down under.
- Glass Spacers – These little accessories are great for those times when you want to vape but you just don’t feel like packing the entire chamber full. They take up 75% of the space in the bowl, which allows you to use just 25% of what you’d normally use to fill it. Keeping in line with the Ascent’s 100% glass vapor path philosophy, they are themselves constructed entirely from glass.
- Wall Charger 110V-240V (UK) – For those in the United Kingdom, DaVinci has your power requirements in mind as this wall charger accessory is designed to make the Ascent compatible with electrical outlets in the UK.
- Wall Charger 110V-240V (EU) – This is the same as the wall charger above, only intended for an EU audience.
- Wall Charger 110V-240V (AU) – And for the Aussies out there, this wall charger will do the trick.
- Metal Pick – This is a nie little tool to have. It’s always around when you need it because it stores itself inside of the vape itself. To access it, use a fingernail to pop it out and then grab it and slide it right out. It can be used to stir your blend, pop the lids off oil jars, and even grab the glass jars when they’re hot.
- Glass Straight Water Tool Adapter 14MM/18MM – This glass pieces makes it easy to connect your Ascent to your favorite water filtered piece, assuming it fits. It’s available in two sizes 14 millimeter and 18 millimeter.
- U-Water Tool Adapter 14MM/18MM – Yet another accessory designed to connect the Ascent to a water filtered piece. Available in two sizes, both 14 millimeter and 18 millimeter.
- Car Charger – This is quite possibly the most important accessory as it turns your car into a charging station for your vape. We strongly suggest picking one up if you spend any sort of time on the road because it’s a real life saver when you want to get your vape on but don’t have an electrical outlet handy.
The Ascent Vaporizer warranty is solid. The manufacturer, Organicix LLC (also known as the “DaVinci Vaporizer” company), provides a 2-year limited warranty that covers electronics, structural integrity, all of the attached parts, craftsmanship, and the heating chamber. The battery, however, is a different story. The internal Lithium-ion batteries are only covered by a 90-day warranty.
From our own experiences with DaVinci’s customer service, we couldn’t be more pleased. Years ago, when the Ascent was first released, interest in it spiked and they were flooded with inquiries and the like. As a result, their customer service suffered as they weren’t adequately prepared for the onslaught of interest that it would create within the vaping community. Since then, they’ve made a point to step up their game and as a result, their customer service is now better than ever.
» Vapor Quality
Thanks to the Ascent’s all-glass vapor pathway, which is lined from start to finish with glass, the vapor it produces is always delicious – assuming the blend you’re using tastes good. In fact, it tastes better than most other dry blend portables we’ve tested. But as far as density is concerned, it’s a little lacking. This is not to say that the vapor isn’t dense when you want it to be, but rather that some of the portables that have hit the market since its introduction are just that much better when it comes to producing thick, tasty clouds of vapor. But this aside, the vapor is everything that you want it to be: it’s good tasting and thick, but not overwhelming.
» Final Thoughts
All things considered, this is truly a marvelous contraption. It has a range of useful features, a tool built directly into it, advanced digital temperature controls that are both accurate and easy to use, it’s compact enough for a pocket, vaporizes just about anything you’d think to put in it, and it produces some of the best tasting vapor around. While there are portable vaporizers we like more the Ascent, it is undoubtedly one of the best 3-in-1 portables that we’ve ever come across. We highly recommend it to anyone looking for a solid portable that does it all. If you’d like to buy one, we suggest buying it through this authorized dealer.