Vivant Alternate Review

Introduction

The Vivant Alternate is a relatively new vaporizer on the market. It uses a hybrid conduction/convection system and features a removable 18650 battery. It is pocketable, simple to use, and fairly light. It is available for $109 from Puffitup with the coupon code PUFFEDUP.


Ease of Use: 8.5/10

It’s so simple to use. There are 3 buttons. The power button, and an up and down button. The power button controls the heat, and the up and down buttons are for controlling the temp you wish to vaporize your herb at. I personally prefer 150C, 170C and then max temp. The first 2 temps are mainly for flavor, the last temp is for that wonderful body effect.

There are a couple of adjustments I did to the device. First I went and updated my firmware from the vivant website. That allows me to change the session length to anywhere from 1-5 minutes, rather than the stock 1 minute session timer. This was a huge update, and I’m glad they did it. I found that 3.5-4 minutes is the perfect session length, so I keep it set to 4 minutes. The next adjustment is the air intake. When it is cold outside, I will close it fully. That allows the heater to keep up with your draws, and is a much better experience in cold weather. Otherwise, I keep the intake wide open for high temps, and almost fully closed for low temp vaping. It is my preference, I’d suggest it to anyone using the device.

Steps to get stoned:

  • Grind your material
  • Pack 0.25g into the chamber (you can do less with the oil pad on top)
  • Put the oil pad on top (optional, I prefer it. leads to less mess and a better session)
  • Put a fully charged 18650 battery in the vape
  • Close the battery door
  • Turn on the device
  • Set the temperature
  • Hold the power button for 2 seconds to turn on the heat
  • Wait for the beep (or watch the display to know when the vape is ready)
  • Enjoy your vapor
  • Empty the AVB after your session


Efficiency: 8/10

It uses more herb than I would like, but it utilizes it pretty well. I can fit .2-.25g of coarsely ground material in my vivant. That’s plenty for a single session, especially if you like to use multiple temperatures. I found the most efficient way to use the vaporizer is to place the included oil pad on top of the herb in the chamber. This will add a bit of conduction, but results in more even and darker AVB.


Taste: 7.5/10

Contrary to what most people are saying on reddit and fuckcombustion, I believe the taste is sub par to the Mighty/Crafty. That being said, since my reviews are based on price not, I believe it has great taste for the price of the vape. It is not a full convection unit, so I didn’t think it would be the most amazing vaporizer when it came to taste. I did, however, have high expectations for the flavor due to the convection/conduction mix.

If the plastic around the airpath was updated to PEEK I believe the taste would be on par with the Crafty and Mighty. I only had a single session where I could taste plastic, and I believe that is because I did not do enough burnoffs before use. I only did one, I would recommend doing three.


Picture by Puffitup

Stealth Factor: 9/10

It is very small, has an integrated mouthpiece that flips down, and fits in your hand nicely. Looking at it from an outside perspective, it looks similar to a battery pack of some sort. If you have the mouthpiece extended, you can easily conceal most of the vaporizer in your hand. It gets some added points in this category due to having the screen on the bottom. I thought this was going to be an issue, as I usually am not very careful when I put my vapes away, but I don’t even have a scratch on the screen with daily use for the last 2+ weeks.

The screen has a mode called stealth mode. This shuts off the screen during use, and no one would be able to tell the unit is on other than the vapor production. This is fantastic. It would be cool to see more companies do this, especially if the screen is on the front or side of the device. I know Boundless did something similar with their CF and I wish they would continue that.


Looks – 7/10

It’s plain. It doesn’t have any interesting features on the outside of it, and has very minimal differences to another popular vape. I do like the bright green accents, they are of a minimalist design and fit it nicely. On top of that the logo placement (on the top of the cooling unit) and the name placement (on the back of the device) are both great.


Function – 7/10

The plastic feeling is awful. It feels cheap. It seems to be strong, but I would not trust it if I were to drop the device. I wish they used a stronger plastic, or supported the plastic better with the internal design. I think that a better plastic would also help with the heat. If you use the device for too many sessions in a row without stopping, the cooling unit can get hot to the touch. I’d recommend giving the device 5 minutes to cool off in between sessions. If you are a single session type of person, then you shouldn’t run into this issue.

Having the adjustable airflow and removable battery are a huge plus though. The battery life isn’t very great on my unit, but being able to swap it out whenever I need to… well, that’s one of the best feelings in the world. I don’t have to worry about running out of juice when I’m not home. I don’t have to worry about charging the battery in the device. Instead, I can pocket 2-3 batteries and be set for any adventure I go on. The airflow adjustment is fantastic because I am not stuck to sucking out of a straw. A lot of vapes feel like that, and this one allows me to change that to a more open draw! I would not say that it is fully open like the Odin, but it is definitely better than a lot of vapes out there. Plus, I love being able to customize a device and fine tune it to my own liking.


Vapor Quality – 7/10

It’s not quite as potent as my other vaporizers, and can get quite dry at higher temperatures. I’m hoping that the WPA Vivant is working on comes out soon. I love using vapes through water, and it would solve one of the bigger issues with this one. That is, the dry mouth. I find that a nice water piece goes a long way, and a simple way to connect to the water piece is definitely a plus.

The potency is mainly because the vape doesn’t like to be ripped. I tend to sip on it throughout the session. Using long, slow draws I can definitely feel the effects of the herb fairly quickly. It tends to be more enjoyable than just ripping on it throughout the session and plowing through herb.


Cost – 9/10

It’s fairly cheap. To be honest, $100 is usually the minimum I would invest in a vaporizer in order to get a great experience. Being $109 after the coupon, it fits perfectly in that price range. You can spend more to get more features, and a better build, but it is perfect for those on a budget. It is priced competitively with the CF, and for a good reason. They both are fantastic devices, but seem to market to different people. The alternate would be better if you prefer replaceable batteries and a smaller oven. The Cf is better if you want more of a powerhouse, and a larger oven.

The alternate will leave you wishing you switched to a vaporizer months ago if it is your first vape. It will increase the efficiency of your herb, the taste will be better than smoking, and the fact that it is not nearly as intrusive when it comes to smell is a huge plus as well. We all know that vapes create an herb smell during use, but it dissipates much faster than smoking. Especially with proper ventilation.


Final thoughts:

The firmware update is needed to enjoy the device fully. You should also turn off the sound. It’s one of the most annoying features I have come across with a vape. I wish they used a vibration motor instead.

Some quick tips:

The firmware update can be found here

You can shut off the sound by holding the power button and + button. This will enter a mode where you can choose the volume from 0-5, with 0 being off.

You can turn on stealth mode by holding down the power button and down button at the same time, while the device is on.

You can unlock the device, and lock it, by holding down both the + and – button.

To switch from F to C, or C to F, just keep scrolling past the max temp. It will automatically change over.

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