Besides aesthetics though, that’s where the similarities stop for the most part. The Firefly 2 is an on-demand heating convection vaporizer, while the PAX 2 is a session style conduction vaporizer.
Being the second iterations of their respective former models, the Firefly 2 and PAX 2 are both sporting improvements over their original designs. Both of these vaporizers are currently really popular in the cannabis vaporization community, but they are both appealing to two different types of users.
In this comparison we are going to break down these two high end vaporizers and see which device fits you personally the best. The comparison will be broken down into the following categories:
- Ease of Use
- Temperature Control
- Vapor Quality and Efficiency
- Pocketability and Discreteness
- Battery Life
With all that said, let’s get into our Firefly 2 vs PAX 2 comparison!
Ease of Use
Both the Firefly 2 and the PAX 2 share super simple design philosophies. The two devices in my opinion executed the cleanest designs out of any portables.
The ease of use category is going to cover how simple and painless both of these designs are for day to day operation and use.
Ease of Use with the Firefly 2
Unlike most other vaporizers on the market, the Firefly 2’s temperature is controlled from its companion smartphone application. From this app you can adjust your heating profile, change which touch capacitive buttons power the heater in your Firefly 2, and see the current battery level.
The App that Firefly Vapor developed is overall really clean and easy to navigate; the only issue I have ever had with the application is the Bluetooth connectivity. Since the launch of this vape though, all my issues with the Bluetooth have been resolved.
However, if your phone itself has issues with Bluetooth connectivity, this can pose issues if you are wishing to adjust the settings of your Firefly 2. In most cases when I couldn’t get my Firefly 2 to pair with my phone I just had to close and re-open the application. With that said, that solution won’t help you if your phone’s Bluetooth itself is spotty or just doesn’t work.
It would be great if there was a way in the future to use the touch capacitive buttons on the side of the device to cycle through the different temperature settings instead of only being able to use the app.
The two touch capacitive buttons on the side of the unit are used to power on the heater. You can adjust which ones activate the heater in the smartphone app as stated before.
When you’re getting ready to use the Firefly 2 and you are beginning to grind up your flower, you really don’t have to do anything special. The Firefly 2 likes its users to use a coarse grind, which is typically the grind consistency from a normal 4 piece grinder.
The top lid simply pops off to reveal the vapor path and bowl. We’re going to break down how much you can load into the bowl in the vapor quality and efficiency portion of this comparison.
If you are into doing concentrates, preparing them is also super easy. Just load a small dab onto the concentrate pad, and from there put the concentrate pad into the oven like you normally would. Overall it’s really easy to prepare and load the Firefly 2.
Without diving too much into the vapor quality of the Firefly 2, this unit really requires its users to take long and slow draws to effectively vaporize your material. The Firefly 2 is a 100% convection vaporizer, which means the only source of heat that is vaporizing your material is coming from the air in which you draw from the vape.
You can hold the power button down all day long and it won’t vaporize the flower in your bowl because you are not drawing air over the herb. We’re going to cover this more later, but from an ease of use standpoint this can pose issues for people new to the Firefly 2 and people new to vaping in general.
This isn’t the type of vape you pick up and get amazing results right out of the gate, but it’s not hard at all to learn how to use the Firefly 2. The experience is just different and it takes some getting used to as compared to traditional conduction vaporizers or combustion.
Regular maintenance with the Firefly 2 is a breeze. A simple wipe down with some kind of cloth damped in isopropyl alcohol is all you need to clean this vaporizer in under 30 seconds. If you don’t stay on top of cleaning it, the process can take longer as the buildup is harder to wipe off, but if you clean it every 5-10 ovens the unit stays pristine.
Ease of Use with the PAX 2
Unlike the Firefly 2, the PAX 2 does not use a smartphone app to control its heating profiles. All of the control with the PAX 2 is done on the silicone mouthpiece. The mouthpiece is used to power the unit on and cycle through the temperature settings.
You rest your lips on your choice of two silicone mouthpieces: A flat one in which your lips rest on the edge of the unit, or a raised mouthpiece which is more like the original Pax.
Personally, I like the flat one as it felt the most natural when using the PAX 2. You can definitely tell the unit was designed around the flat mouthpiece primarily.
In my experience, you want to grind your flower as fine as possible, as I found vapor production to be the best with the PAX 2 when the material is ground up as such.
You access the oven on this one by removing the magnetic oven lid on the bottom of the unit. I like this solution as it is super easy to load the PAX 2, stir mid-session, and unload it.
Like the Firefly 2, you do want to be a little mindful of how you draw if you want good results. Long slow draws produced the best clouds and effects with this vape. You can take multiple short draws, or “sipping” as some people call it. Sipping can be effective for people with low tolerances, but for most people I think they would find it very lacking and unsatisfying.
With that said, it is easier to pull nice big clouds off of this vape for a new user, and it doesn’t really take any getting used to. Like most portable vapes though, you can’t just draw aggressively from it and expect it to keep up with you.
The PAX 2 does require some maintenance every now and again. Pipe cleaners, cotton swabs, and isopropyl alcohol are all you need to clean the PAX 2. Cleaning the vapor path and swabbing the oven and mouthpiece with the cotton swabs is really easy and quick. It does take a few minutes to do overall.
Which vape is the easiest to use?
For simple ease of use, I think most people will have an easier time with the PAX 2.
This is not to say the Firefly 2 is not easy to use, in fact I would say they are almost tied in this respect. The only thing holding back the Firefly 2 is the fact I can’t just pass someone this vape without telling them what to do and how to do draw. If you pass someone a PAX 2 and given they don’t draw super hard on it, they’ll pull a nice vapor hit from it and be satisfied.
The temperature control portion of this comparison is going to cover the temperature settings themselves, and how you cycle between them.
Temperature Control with the Firefly 2
The Firefly 2 has no way of adjusting the temperature on the fly without the use of your phone.
From the smartphone app you have the ability of cycling through 5 different heat profiles for dry herb, and 1 for concentrates. The heat profiles are as follows.
- Low -340°F
- Medium Low – 360°F
- Medium – 380°F
- Medium High – 400°F
- High – 420°F
- Concentrate – 500°F
The Firefly 2 with 5 temperature settings for dry herb, and 1 for concentrates covers the spectrum that most people want to vape at.
Temperature Control with the PAX 2
The PAX 2 only offers 4 temperature settings as opposed to the Firefly’s 5. It also doesn’t require the use of an app, so you can easily change the temperature on the fly.
- Temperature 1 – 350°F
- Temperature 2 – 380°F
- Temperature 3 – 400°F
- Temperature 4 – 420°F
These 4 presets do cover most of the general temperatures you’ll find most people leaning towards.
It is super simple to adjust temperatures – simply press and hold the middle of the PAX 2’s mouthpiece, and from there the front LED will change. From there, tap the middle of the mouthpiece without holding it down to begin cycling through the 4 preset temperature settings. When the LED indicates it is on your desired temperature, simply press and hold the middle of the mouthpiece again to begin heating up the device.
Who has the best temperature control?
This one is tough to pick a winner. I like the ease of use of adjusting the PAX 2’s temperatures since you don’t need to bother with an app, but the Firefly 2 has an extra setting for dry herb and the ability to vape concentrates.
If using an app sounds like a hassle to you, you would want to go with the PAX 2. If you don’t mind using the app and want a slightly broader temperature spectrum and a concentrate setting, go with the Firefly 2.
Vapor Quality and Efficiency
This section is going to break down how flavorful the vapor is, how smooth it is, and how efficiently the vaporizer uses your material.
This is where both units differ greatly. The Firefly 2 is a 100% convection vaporizer for both dry herbs and concentrates. The PAX 2 on the other hand is a conduction vaporizer strictly for dry herbs.
The Firefly 2’s Vapor Quality and Efficiency
For starters, the Firefly 2 in my opinion offers the best vapor quality out of any portable vaporizer I have had the pleasure of using. The 100% convection heating allows this unit to truly show you everything your herb or concentrate has to offer, delivering truly praiseworthy vapor.
When you first pick up the Firefly 2, you may be discouraged at first because you’re not drawing super big clouds off of it from the get go. This is because the Firefly 2 is doing something different that most other vaporizers don’t.
With conduction units, your material is vaporized by being in contact with the heater. With the Firefly 2, you vaporize the material by drawing hot air over herb. All the heater in the Firefly 2 is doing is heating the air that you draw over it, and from there that air is pulled over the herb or concentrate effectively vaporizing it.
You have to be mindful that you are pulling enough hot air over the material at a slow and steady pace. Other vaporizers don’t require you to put much thought into how you draw from it, but this is one of those vaporizers that does.
The on-demand convection heating gently vaporizes your material allowing you to truly appreciate the subtle flavors and nuanced effects that are missed on more traditional conduction vaporizers. With conduction vaporizers, you lose a lot of volatile compounds while the oven is heating up or sitting idle, but since the Firefly 2 only heats with on-demand convection heating, the material is only vaporized when you are hitting it.
I really liked the vapor from the Medium heating profile up to the High heating profile. The 380°F-420°F temperature range on this device is outstanding. Even at the High heating profile, the vapor is very flavorful, smooth and potent. Typically I want water filtration when I vape over 400°F, but with the Firefly 2 it’s not necessary.
Overall, the Firefly 2 is a really efficient vaporizer. You only need a small amount of herb, roughly .1 of shredded material is pretty much the maximum you want to go. At the high temperature setting this vape will fully extract all of your active ingredients.
I found it necessary to stir my bowls for an even extraction. To do this, I simply take off the lid and stir the bowl with my finger. I use the vapor path as a surface to mix up the ground flower as seen in the image demonstration below.
Unlike the PAX 2, the Firefly 2 also does concentrates. A small dab is all you need for large flavorful hits with this unit. The Firefly 2 in general has delivered the tastiest concentrate vapor I have ever experienced. You’ll notice so many flavors in your concentrate that you never distinguished before.
The PAX 2’s Vapor Quality and Efficiency
The PAX 2 for being a conduction vaporizer has pretty good vapor quality. With that said however, the Firefly 2 is leaps and bounds ahead of it in this department.
Off the bat you should be pulling clouds with the PAX 2, however if you do draw too aggressively the device won’t keep up. A moderate to slow draw speed are really all you need to get good results with the PAX 2. Slow and long draws produced excellent results with this vape.
When you aren’t hitting the PAX 2, the oven will turn down the temperature so it isn’t cooking your material all of the time. This helps preserve the flavor and effects of your material.
Temperatures 1-3 I found to be satisfying and good. Temperature 3 was starting to push it on being too hot for me, but it shouldn’t be an issue for most people and I have no problems finishing up a session on it.
I save temperature 4 for when I am vaping with a water pipe since I find the vapor way too hot and harsh to be enjoyable at that setting on its own.
The PAX 2 has a large oven that holds roughly .3 of ground material. A fine grind is pretty crucial to getting a good vaping experience with the PAX 2. Fully loading the oven with finely ground flower will make the PAX 2 perform at optimal efficiency.
Something optional you can pick up are these New Vape vented oven lids (below). These increase airflow and make the experience better overall in my opinion. They ease any draw resistance and make the hits a lot less harsh. The additional airflow these offer when you are vaping really make a big difference!
Which vape has the best vapor quality and efficiency?
I would hand it to the Firefly 2. The Pax 2 doesn’t have bad vapor quality at all. In fact, given its small discrete form factor I’m impressed by it.
However, when stacked up against a convection vaporizer like the Firefly 2, it just doesn’t hold up in this department. Likewise, the Firefly 2 is overall just a more efficient use of your material.
Pocketability and Discreteness
This section will briefly go over how well these units fit in the hand, how easy they are to transport, and how discrete they are for public use.
The Firefly 2’s Pocketability and Discreteness
The Firefly 2 is 55% lighter and 33% lighter than the original Firefly. Its small and sleek design fits very comfortably in the hand, pocket, or a bag.
This design makes it really comfortable to just throw in a pocket – it feels like you just have another phone in your pocket and isn’t much of an encumbrance on yourself.
The design is pretty discrete, but it is a little hard to fully conceal in the hand and the glow from the oven can draw attention if you are not covering it.
The PAX 2’s Pocketability and Discreteness
The PAX 2 is coming in at a super small form factor and is typically the go-to discrete portable vaporizer on the market for this reason alone. Its super compact design allows it to fit anywhere you need to store it for travel, whether it be a pocket or a bag.
The super small design is easily concealed in anyone’s hand. If the unit weren’t so smelly while in use I would be 100% confident using this in public.
That’s something to take note of as well, while you can easily conceal this unit, the smell from it heating up is pretty pungent and will alert people around you that you are vaporizing cannabis.
Which Vape Is More Pocketable and Discrete?
I would give this one to the PAX 2 for sure. The super small design makes it the perfect device for anyone to easily transport and use publicly if need be.
The battery life section of this comparison is going to compare how long each battery lasts, how they are charged and if they are replaceable.
The Firefly 2’s Battery Life
Battery life varied a little bit with the Firefly 2 depending on which heating profile I was primarily using, but 5-8 bowls is what I averaged per battery. For reference, I park between Medium and High for most of my use.
You can find the Firefly 2 charged in about 40 minutes with its fast charging technology. Another cool thing is the fact that most of your charge is available after its only been sitting on the charging dock for 20 minutes.
The Firefly 2 also comes with an extra 7.4V Lithium-Ion battery that you can replace yourself. If your battery begins to not last as long over a few months of use, you can replace it with a fresh battery yourself without having to send it in for servicing which vapes like the Crafty and the PAX 2 force users to do.
Firefly Vapor also offers an external charger that you can use to charge up some extra batteries for a trip you’re taking so that you have some on reserve and never have to wait for a battery to charge.
The PAX 2’s Battery life
The PAX 2 gives its users about 2 hours of continuous use per charge, depending on which heat setting you’re using of course. From a dead battery, I found my PAX 2 charged in about 2 hours.
I’m not a fan of either the Firefly 2’s charging system or the PAX 2’s, but this one I really don’t like. The magnetic charger for the PAX 2 I find really unreliable and just a hassle to work with in general.
It hasn’t just happened once where I come back to my PAX 2 after a few hours and realize my vape wasn’t charging since I left it.
Unlike the Firefly 2, the PAX 2 does not have replaceable batteries. If your batteries fail you will have to send your unit in for servicing from Pax Vapor.
Who wins the battery category?
I’m gonna give it to the Firefly 2 for one reason alone – replaceable batteries. This really extends the range of how far your portables can go without having the need to be recharged.
Overall, I wish every vape had replaceable batteries, but unfortunately that’s not yet the case.
This brief section will summarize each units warranties.
The Firefly 2’s Warranty
The Firefly 2 offers a 2 year warranty on factory defects and flaws in the devices workmanship. Personally, I would like to see a longer warranty, however 2 years is still a good warranty for a well built vaporizer
The PAX 2’s Warranty
PAX Vapor offers their standard 10 year warranty on defects and faulty units. They will stand behind their warranty so long as you purchase through an authorized retailer.
Who has the best warranty?
The win is definitely with the PAX 2 on this one. It says a lot about a company’s product when they will stand by it for 10 years.
Conclusion: Which vape should you go with, the Firefly 2 or the Pax 2?
Well ask yourself, what exactly are you looking for?
We have the Firefly 2 which offers unmatched vapor quality and also has replaceable batteries. The Firefly 2 also offers the ability to vape concentrates where the PAX 2 does not.
On the other hand, we have the PAX 2 which is in my opinion the best portable vaporizer for discrete public use, and general on the go use as well.
If you think you’re going to find yourself at home more often rather than always on the go, I think I would lean towards the Firefly 2. The vapor quality is amazing, and if you want to take it out it’s still great for that even if it’s slightly less portable than the PAX 2.
Just note that due to the small oven size you’ll need to bring a grinder or something like a doob tube filled with ground herb so you can reload it as you’re out. I’ve found that most regular users will need more than 1 bowl in the Firefly 2.
If you don’t think you’re going to be vaping at home as much and you’re primarily on the go, I would go with the PAX 2. The large oven size and small discrete form factor makes it a great all around portable vaporizer for someone always out of the house.
The large oven means you don’t have to bring anything else with you besides the PAX 2 itself for shorter trips or activities. And the long battery life makes its a pretty reliable vape for being away from a charger for a while.
I hope this comparison helped you figure out which of these two are the best for you.
If you are still undecided or want to consider other portable vapes, be sure to take a look at our Portable Vaporizer Buyers Guide.
Have any questions for us? Hit us up in the comments and we would be glad to help! Hope you all have a fantastic day!