G Pen Connect Review – A portable dab Rig?
A fun little invention by the team who brought us the G-Pen Elite, the G-Pen Connect is an alternative to an e-rig with the same results. Designed to slide on a standard 14 or 18mm joint, the G-Pen Connect promises to turn any bubbler into a high-quality and simple to use dab rig. Does it connect the dots the way we hope, or is it just another fun toy to add to the collection? Check out our G-Pen Connect review here for more info!
How easy is it to use the G Pen Connect?
It’s not your usual e-rig, though it’s very simple to figure out. After turning it on with five clicks and selecting your temperature with three clicks of the single central button, it’ll start heating up within a few seconds. You can either cold-load or hot-load the device for that authentic dab experience.
You have three power control options with the G-Pen Connect, 3.1v, 3.6v, and 4.3v. This is alright and standard for budget wax pen vaporizers, but not quite what you’d expect from a $149 device. For this price, we really would’ve liked to see some precise temperature control going on.
Cleaning is a bit of a pain. While the bottom glass part can be dunked in some iso, you’ll want to Q-Tip the chamber frequently to prevent the build-up from the ghost of past dabs. The central area can get really gummed up quickly, especially if you’re using large globs.
How long does the battery last?
850mAh and a MicroUSB charge aren’t really impressive in todays age. While 850mAh is pretty normal and even exceeds what most wax pen vaporizers have packed inside, we’d like to see a little more of a boost in the battery life department. It’ll take only about an hour to top up from empty to full and a full charge should last you a couple dozen session before topping up. This may depend on your use habits though!
MicroUSB is a bit dated now and we would’ve loved to see them use USB-C. Get with the times, ol’ man! Unfortunately too, integrated batteries will eventually degrade and sooner than you know it, your battery life will be halved just through regular wear and tear.
G Pen Connect Heating System
The Connect comes up to speed within just a handful of seconds, which is pretty impressive in its own right. It’s your standard ceramic plate atomizer which can accommodate small-medium sized dabs pretty well. Large globs will work alright but we’ve found the best performance to be with smaller loads for sure. The G-Pen connect is strictly a dab vaporizer and not designed at all to be used as a dry herb vaporizer. Don’t try it, you will be disappointed!
How’s the Vapor Quality?
A ceramic disc atomizer is pretty common in a lot of wax pen vaporizers and does the job just fine. Not great, and not nearly as nice as pure quartz, it leaves a pretty good flavor and some pretty impressive hits. Unfortunately, it develops that ‘old dab’ flavor after a few sessions of not cleaning, so we’d really recommend staying on top of that to keep the hits tasting fresh.
It draws fine and milks up a bubbler as you’d expect it to, especially on the higher voltage setting. Of course this is at the expense of flavor. Still, it does the trick and in a party session, people probably aren’t exactly going to be flavor chasing and scratching their mustaches with disapproval.
How Portable and Discreet is it?
Well, for a portable dab rig, it’s about as small as you can get! With that in mind, you’re going to need a glass piece to accommodate it anyways. Chances are that both you and your friends probably have some glass pieces to begin with anyways, so you’ll be able to hook it up to a friend’s rig no problem. The included carrying case is pretty good and fits just fine into almost any bag.
The whole unit doesn’t weigh much and you’re probably going to be hitting this from the comfort of a home or passenger seat anyways, so stealth really comes down to how and where you use it.
What accessories come with the G Pen Connect?
You don’t get a whole lot with the G-Pen Connect, and we would’ve liked to see them add both the 10mm and 18mm adaptors as well as a dab tool and maybe even some basic cleaning tools for the price. As it sits, in the box you get:
- The G-Pen Connect
- USB Charging cable
- 14mm Glass WPA (water pipe adaptor)
- Hemp zippered carrying case
- 850mAh battery
- Quick start guide
Manufacturer reputation and dependability
Grenco Science, the team behind the G-Pen, doesn’t quite have the best reputation. Their newer units like the G-Pen Nova LXE have seen a noticeable improvement in quality and we like the direction that the company is headed however. The build quality of the Connect is solid and it feels better than the cheap Chinese plastic that many wax pen vapes are. The magnetically attaching tank cap and battery, aluminum build, and overall feel of the device are quite solid. It’s innovative, intuitive, and we like it!
Replacement parts can all be found on their store at a reasonable price, though we do with the 10 and 18mm adaptors came bundled in with the cost. At the $149 launch price, it’s an alright deal with what they include in the box, but nothing mind-blowing by any means.
Who is the G Pen Connect vaporizer for?
We wouldn’t say the G Pen Connect is for the hardcore enthusiasts or dab experts, it’s more for the casual audience who wants to have easy and simple sessions with friends, without worrying about delicate glass, meticulous torching, and hot bangers burning your hands.
While nothing quite like it exists out there, we think the performance can be compared to most wax pen vapes out there now and devices like the Utillian 5 and Pulsar APX Wax can give it a run for its money in that department.
Honestly, the team at Grenco has really bumped their game up and brought some real innovation to the table. While its performance isn’t quite the be all and end all for e-rigs or dabs in general, it’s fun, simple, and convenient to use. No need to haul around an entire rig or bubbler, no fiddling with torches and pricey glass, and no guesswork. It’s simple and it works well.
With that being said, its performance can be likened to a regular wax pen vaporizer and won’t blow you out of the water. The flavor is alright though the hits are pretty big. Cleaning and limited temperature controls are our biggest gripes with the unit and we really hope to see a second version some day with some improvements.
It’s a bit expensive for what it is, but it does the trick and if you want a very simple e-rig solution if you already have some nice glass kicking around, then the G-Pen Connect might satisfy ya!
Tips for best performance
Here are some G-Pen Connect tips & tricks we have to share!
- Use medium-small amounts. A large rice-grain is the best size we’ve found!
- The medium power setting sis the best balance between flavor and hit size.
- Use the spring-loaded carb release at the end of the session to clear the bubbler.
- Always keep it clean and tidy up after every 5 sessions or so. Isopropyl alcohol will do the trick
- Cold load it for passing around with friends to keep things easy!