Spliffin’s “Pure” line of pre-filled CO2 hash oil cartridges offers a higher potency, strain specific alternative to the company’s standard “Dub” blended hash oil cartridges. But do they live up to their promise of distinctive, strain-specific effects?

Spliffin is a Los Angeles based cannabis company with a focus on concentrates and vaporizer technology, and a commitment to “safety, purity, and potency,” according to their website. They use a multistage, solvent-free CO2 extraction process, and their products are lab tasted with the results available on their website. A secondary refinement process removes impurities, and every batch faces quality control tests, according to the company.

All of this sounds great, and generally along similar lines to the processes used by other modern CO2 cartridge manufacturers. However, the CO2 extraction process is notoriously harsh, usually minimizing terpene content and yielding oil with a powerful, though less nuanced effect. Some companies have found ways around this, producing a more complex and strain-specific experience, by reintroducing terpenes, or taking care to preserve them in the extraction process.

When it comes to the experience, how do Spliffin cartridges compare to the rest of the increasingly competitive cartridge market? To find out, we tried the company’s indica Spliffin OG cartridge – their signature take on the classic west coast indica-dominant OG family.

spliffin pure pre filled CO2 oil cartridge

The cartridge passes the first test – it looks to be made entirely out of metal and glass. And, I would soon find out, that factor is reflected in the cartridge’s bold and pure taste, with a fresh, piney, vaguely citrus flavor that shows off the OG roots of the Spliffin OG strain. Although the oil looks fairly thick, it vaporizes quite easily, even on my battery’s lowest temperature setting. Without much effort, the hit quickly releases a huge cloud of vapor into my lungs, and I immediately can tell I won’t be needing any more.

As is often the case with vaporizers, it takes a solid 15 minutes for the effects to settle in fully. And when they do, they pack quite a punch. The single hit, albeit a gargantuan one, took me about as far as I could go without feeling overwhelmed. The oil is on the higher end of THC content, at 79 percent. Although the effect was focused on the body I also felt the usual head rush you might expect from a high-power hybrid strain with some degree of sativa genetics. There was not much in the way of subtle mood effects in either direction, though – neither energy, nor sedation. It was also not anxiety provoking, but not particularly calming either. Above all else, I felt sufficiently high with an old school, nostalgic high of cotton mouth and a noticeably stimulated appetite.  

Based on my own experience, I associate this type of nostalgic high feeling with sheer THC driven power, rather than the more nuanced, terpene-influenced entourage effect of raw, high-quality flower. The company does say it takes care to preserve terpenes in its extraction process, yet their lab tests don’t mention anything about terpene content. While they may indeed utilize a gentler process as far as CO2 extraction goes, the effect seems above all, relatively straightforward and powerful.

While a handful of brands offer innovative cartridges that preserve the trademark effect of a specific strain, the vast majority of CO2 oil cartridges present a simpler, THC-focused experience. However, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Such an experience can be ideal for watching a movie, seeing a concert, or playing video games. Something passive, where either sativa energy or indica sleepiness would be unwelcome. It’s less ideal for stress and anxiety, and it’s also less ideal for higher energy pursuits like exercise, but very few cartridges are ideal for these uses.

Spliffin’s cartridges win points for their great taste and their intense, THC-driven effect. Cartridges like this have a place in the arsenal of every cannabis fan. They are tasty, easy to use, ultra-portable, discreet, and frankly, get you very high, very quickly. On the other hand, medical patients and those interested in the subtle variations between strains will likely want CO2 cartridges to supplement their normal routine of raw flower or other types of concentrates, rather than replace it. That is, at least, until more companies perfect the art of preserving terpenes through the CO2 extraction process.