The X MAX Starry portable dry herb vaporizer isn’t on many people’s radar, but some are starting to take note of it thanks to reviews and a very attractive price tag. We recently had the opportunity to check it out, and today we’ll be giving you a full review of its performance and features. While the Starry comes with an attractive price tag, we always exercise caution when pricing seems too good to be true… Also if this is your first vaporizer be sure to check out our Vaporizer Buyers Guide for helpful tips.
Review: X MAX Starry
How it Works
The Starry is a fully conduction vaporizer, meaning heat is delivered directly to your herbs from the hot walls of the ceramic oven.In fact the design of the Starry reminds us of a slim downed version of the Ascent.
The temperature can be adjusted in one degree increments using the buttons and screen that are located along its side, and the oven is accessed by removing the top, which is held on by magnets.
Power is delivered via an 18650 battery. The compartment for this is accessed by opening the bottom of the unit.
The temperature flexibility of the Starry is great. You can easily adjust the temperature in one degree increments, with a range of 212° – 464°F (100° – 240°C).
This range is considerably larger than what most vaporizers offer, although a lot of the included temperatures aren’t actually good for vaporization. Using the top of the range will run the risk of combusting the herbs, while the lower temperatures won’t do anything at all.
The vapor quality is good. If you stick with proper vaping temperatures, the flavor is what we would expect from a conduction based vaporizer and it goes down fairly smooth. Visible vapor production is average. As you increase the temperature, it gets harsh quick.
This is especially true when you get up above 420°F. You get more clouds at these temperatures, but the taste is much worse and it will make you cough a lot.
The risk of combustion is very high as well, especially if you try to take more than a couple draws before stopping.
If you like the shape of the Starry but are looking for a unit that offers much better vapor quality, we recommend checking out the Utillian 720, which uses convection heating to increase the quality of vapor over the duration of the session.
For the price, the manufacturing quality is good. Not many vaporizers offer a digital screen and full temperature control at the $150 price point. The included 18650 battery is rated at 2500mAh and performs well.
The mouthpiece is even made from ceramic zirconia, the same material used in the DaVinci IQ’s vapor pathway. This vape is definitely better than you would would expect for the cost, however we are curious how this device will hold up long term.
However one thing we notice with the Starry is that it gets hot during use, especially around the heating chamber, after a 10 minute session the section around the chamber becomes almost too hot to touch. The rest of the unit also heats up during the session as the heat travels and tries to escape.
We also notices that this heat was traveling into the battery bay, which does not seem to be all that well insulated. While the temperature was not so hot that it was alarming, but it is warm enough that it will surely put a little extra strain on the battery during the life of this unit.
The Starry will deliver between an hour and an hour and a half of use with each charge. Expect that to translate to about 6 – 8 sessions with every charge.
For most people, that will be more than enough for a day of vaping, however it still does not hold a candle to a unit like the Smite, which offers users 3 hours of battery life at a much better price.
The portability of this is pretty good. It’s a decent size as far as holding it in your hand goes. It’s small enough that you can conceal it, yet big enough that you can hold it with a more natural grip.
It’s pretty thin as well, making it a good candidate for carrying in your pocket without it being uncomfortable.
Finally, ability to carry extra batteries and extend the already good battery life is a nice feature because it makes this a good option for long trips away from power sources.
Ease of Use
Vaporizers are trending towards being more complicated, but the Starry reminds us a lot of the Smite Plus, it’s straightforward and simple. There are three buttons, one to turn it on and two to adjust the temperature.
The top snaps on and off thanks to a well sized magnet that holds it in place, and the battery door swings open easily so you can remove the battery whenever you want.
This is also above average when it comes to discretion. I already mentioned that it can be concealed with your hand, which makes it easy to take discreet draws while you are in public places.
Visible vapor production is also pretty limited at lower temperatures, which further increases the odds that you can use this without attracting attention.
I am a bit conflicted when it comes to the Starry, for the price it is a pretty decent vaporizer, it offers a digital display and removable battery for $150. However the vapor quality is just average and can be quite harsh above 210C, which may not be good for those who enjoy higher temperature vaping. Also the uncomfortable temperature the device can get during operation makes us question the longevity of the unit as well as the 18650’s you may put into it.
For a bit less than the Starry you can get the Zeus Smite Vaporizer, which operates with a single button for a hassle free experience and boasts 3 hours of battery life while producing pretty comparable vapor.
And for just a bit more we would suggest checking out the Utillian 720 Vaporizer, which offers convection vapor and 8 pre-set temperatures. It is hands down the best convection vaporizer for the price.
If you have questions about our review or just want to let us know what you think, feel free to drop us a comment below! Also, don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram to keep up to date with all our contests, sales alerts and other fun stuff! Thanks for reading and as always, keep vapin’!