The Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 Hookah Review: Is This A Buyers Guide?
In this in depth review of the Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 hookah, we aimed to give our readers a fresh perspective on a hookah that has been around for a few years. Luckily the hookah industry is not as quick to innovate, change, and release new products like say the vape industry is, partly due to to the smaller size of the vape industry. The Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 is the latest version of the Starbuzz Carbine hookah, and buying a Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 is still a very popular thing 2022, even though the year just got started!
So we decided to write a review that is as comprehensive of a buying guide / in depth review of the Carbine 2.0 that you can get in 2022. In being thorough, we were able to compile information on the Carbine from many reliable sources. We got a chance to get feedback from customers on whether or not buying the Carbine 2.0 was a good decision, even after a year or more of ownership. We have a demo unit that is used daily and has been used daily for the last 6-9 months that we have great experience with. We also talked to our Starbuzz USA distributor to find out what kind of feedback they are getting from customers and other vendors.
We put all of this together below to give those of you who are considering buying a Carbine 2.0 hookah, or merely are just curious about it, a pretty good starting point. Without further adieu let’s jump right in. Thank you for staying with us thus far, and be sure to read to the end as there are some surprising things about the Carbine you probably weren’t aware of!
Table of Contents
What is the difference between the original SB Carbine and the Starbuzz Carbine 2.0?
The Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 is an update to the popular Starbuzz Carbine series of hookahs that were released in 2018 and won massive popularity right away. And it’s a no brainer why. Just look at it, this thing looks like part assault rifle, part spaceship and it’s one of the most modern looking hookahs around. And the performance is right there with other top hookahs available online today.
When most hookah manufacturers are moving away from the traditional and dated pear inspired look on the stems (think Khalil Mamoon) to something more modern, Starbuzz took it off planet with their design. It has to be one of the most unique, futuristic looking hookahs that has enough neat features, and performance to back up the buzz. This is one of the best selling hookahs online, even in 2021, and that is saying something.
Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 Hookah: What Parts and Accessories Does It Come With?
The Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 comes in a complete kit, with all parts and accessories included. That means everything that is needed minus the coals and tobacco come with the Carbine hookah. When you open the box, you will have the following parts & accessories available. You can use this list as assembly instructions for the Carbine as well. The steps are not in order of assembly.
1. The Charcoal Tray: This is an oversized charcoal tray that will be great at catching any falling charcoal from hopefully landing on the ground.
2. The Starbuzz Carbine Glass Base + Metal Housing / Sleeve: The glass base for the carbine comes in its metal sleeve / housing that has the 360 degree rotating bearing attached to the top of the housing. The bearing can be unscrewed if desired. The top of the bearing housing will screw into the bottom of the heart assembly of the Carbine.
3. LED Light + Remote: The led light is assembled at the bottom of the Carbine Glass Base. You also get the remote to operate the LED lights. Batteries are not included, so make sure you put batteries in before assembly.
4. Clay Phunnel Bowl: You get a clay phunnel bowl. This is a very inexpensive starter bowl that you will want to replace. You can get by using it, but your performance will be severely limited because it will provide poor heat regulation due to its cheaper construction and materials used. We recommend the Hookah John Trimony bowls, Alpaca Rook bowls, or D-Head Phunnel Bowls as excellent replacement bowls. The clay bowl sits on the silicone bowl grommet.
5. Complete Top Stem + Heart: You get the entire top stem, attached to the heart of the Carbine 2.0. This includes the hoseport. The hoseport adapter will go into the hoseport, the heart will screw into the rotator bearing that is attached to the glass base and its metal sleeve. The downstem will screw to the bottom of the heart before you screw on the heart to the glass base housing.
6. 4 Legs: You have 4 Starbuzz Carbine Legs that are attached individually. The legs attach to the top part of the metal sleeve that holds the glass base. There will be four individual threaded holes visible.
7. SB Carbine Tongs: You get a pair of long Starbuzz Carbine Tongs.
8. Top Locking Nut + Silicone Bowl Grommet: You get the top screwable locking nut that secures the top part of the charcoal tray to the hookah, and where the bowl grommet sits. A white silicone bowl grommet is included.
9. Stainless Steel Downstem + Diffuser: You have the stainless steel downstem with the attached diffuser. This is screwed on to the bottom part of the heart.
10. Starbuzz Carbine Hose Port Adapter: The Carbine comes with a proprietary hoseport adapter that connects the silicone hose to the hoseport.
11. Aluminum Hose Tip: You get a matching color aluminum hose tip. This attaches to one end of the silicone hose.
12. Silicone Hose: You get one large heavy duty silicone hose that attaches the mouth tip to the hose port adapter. The silicone hose is washable.
The Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 Hookah: What are its top features and how durable is this modern hookah pipe?
The Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 is constructed of stainless steel internals, basically the downstem, and sports an anodized finish. Part of the reason for the two different materials was to ensure the internals are of high quality metal and can stand the regular wear and tear from heat and water and smoke, and the anodized finishing gives the Carbine a that space metal quality in any of their colors, and makes the overall hookah pipe easy and light to carry or transport.
Though it may look bulky, the SB Carbine 2.0 is the perfect travel hookah for many reasons. First as we mentioned the SB Carbine 2.0 is surprisingly light for its size. The second reason is the entire hookah can easily be disassembled, and the box the Carbine comes in can be doubled as a carrying case, and it doesn’t take up that much room. This is also a big plus on cleaning the hookah when the time comes as you can take everything apart and clean each piece. Third, setting up the hookah also doesn’t take that much time, it’s very easy.
From a performance aspect, the sb carbine hookah has the benefit of having a stainless steel downstem, which ensures durability as the downstem won’t rust or corrode over time, and it doesn’t have any finishes that will deteriorate overtime, which can get very dangerous with cheaper stainless steel. As for the exterior finish, the anodized finish is durable, but over time you will notice some wear and tear on the anodized coating which may become visible. This is just a natural occurrence when you have applied some kind of painted finish on metal, you’ll notice wear and tear overtime.
It comes with a removable diffuser which allows for a smoother draw if you don’t like loud bubbles, and the height can easily be adjusted from 27.5” to 30”. It’s also nice that the kit comes with everything, a bowl, heavy duty tongs, a substantial silicone hose with an aluminum tip, led lights, the bowl grommet, you have everything you need to start smoking and producing clouds which this hookah does very well.
Another cool thing is you can make this a two hose hookah by buying an adapter for the purge valve that converts it into another hose port. You also have a bearing built into this hookah that allows the entire hookah to rotate around the base, which means you can pass your hookah hose to somebody across from you and turn the base and you have no hose tug or possibility of the hose getting caught and possibly knocking the hookah over.
And then you have LED lights that you can put on the bottom of the base, and now you have a hookah party, all compliments of Starbuzz.
How Does The Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 Perform? How Does It Smoke?
Now as far as the smoking performance aspect of the SB Carbine 2.0 hookah, this thing is the smoothest Starbuzz hookah that we have had the pleasure of trying. We’ve tried the Challenger 1.0 and 2.0 stems, the Discovery stems, the Atlantis stems, the Challenger Woodline hookahs, Starbuzz Mini, and a few others.
How restricted is the Carbine 2.0?
Part of the reason we think the SB Carbine delivers better performance than its Starbuzz siblings is because this hookah pipe has a wider diameter on it’s downstem than other Starbuzz hookahs. That wider diameter allows you to pull more smoke with less effort. The hose and hose tip also have a wider diameter so you’re getting a hookah that is really engineered to draw a lot of smoke from the bowl, with as much effort as you put into breathing. You can imagine that isn’t a lot of effort. Especially if you have smoked traditional hookahs like a Khalil Mamoon traditional hookah pipe, it would be one heck of a noticeable difference.
Most modern hookahs like the Starbuzz Carbine want to have less restriction. This is what we classify as a wide draw or open draw hookah. The reason being is most smokers prefer a smooth and easy draw with as much smoke as possible. This ensures bigger clouds and it also ensures you get the most flavor from the bowl in one hit.
Also for those people that don’t like a very wide or open draw hookah, a hookah like the Carbine 2.0 modern hookah is still where you want to start. The reason being because you can add restrictions to the hookah with the way you pack your bowl, the size and amount of hose you have in your foil, and the hose and hose diameter used for your hookah hose. Normally all these factors will also affect how open your hookah hits or how restricted it is, which is why it makes sense to start with a more open hookah and then adjust it to your liking with the other variables mentioned here.
Starbuzz Carbine Diffuser
Lastly the Starbuzz Carbine also comes with a removable threaded stainless steel diffuser. This diffuser works well in diffusing the larger bubbles into smaller bubbles and giving you a quieter and smoother smoke. The smoke with the diffuser is creamy, and dense, and full of flavor, something we definitely liked. Without the diffuser, you hear the bubbles more and the smoking experience is less smooth compared to when the diffuser is on, but not by a lot. Still a very good draw without the diffuser.
The stainless steel diffuser is also adjustable, meaning you can drop it down a little further. What this does is allows you to fill less water in the glass base of the carbine, further adjusting your smoking experience.
What Are Some Of The Downsides of The Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 Hookah Pipe?
There are some negatives that we have experienced or our customers have mentioned to us. These are pretty minor and nitpicky items, which most people will not find as problems were they to buy the sb carbine hookah pipe, but we thought in an effort to be thorough we should mention them.
We shipped one Starbuzz Carbine hookah that had a defective rotator bearing. The bearing casing came apart while the customer was setting up their hookah pipe. Thankfully this part is removable from the glass base, and is not needed for the hookah to function properly. It’s just a bearing that adds the additional functionality of allowing the hookah pipe to rotate 360 degrees.
Starbuzz After Sales Support is Very Lacking
The real problem was dealing with Starbuzz Support, which was also not easy. It took us several emails and a few calls to a few different numbers to get a hold of the right department and people responsible for warranty claims. This was not fun. Now we buy this from the master distributor for Starbuzz, but even they weren’t inclined to help us when an item has been used, which speaks more to how Starbuzz doesn’t hold their B2B partners accountable for after sales service.
We instead contacted the Starbuzz warehouse in Southern California, which did end up being the right place to handle this issue. The process afterwards was unnecessarily complicated, the warehouse contacted the master distributor, who ultimately ended up receiving a new bearing for us that was sent out by Starbuzz. We finally got it and sent it out to our customer who was happy. However, all the back and forth, and all the denying of responsibility from various Starbuzz distributors, ended up taking us a few weeks to get this matter resolved.
The Hookah Industry Seems to Appreciate Chaos
Obviously in any other industry, this level of disorganization and irresponsibility would end up creating a big problem for a leading brand like Starbuzz, because customer service still makes or breaks a company, but being that this is the hookah industry, run by large brands that are operating like a street bazaar vendor in the Middle East, I guess this is good customer service. At least the problem was resolved as opposed to not being resolved.
Sorry, but that rant was necessary. As a business owner, there are just no good enough excuses to have B2B channels, ones that compete with each other, and none of them be responsible for after sales warranty service. And we’ve seen enough of this in the hookah industry, where it shouldn’t be commonplace. A manufacturer selling to a distributor has to have a system in place for after sales / warranty issues, and they have to hold the distributor responsible for making sure those issues are resolved by them. Otherwise they shouldn’t sell to them.
The Glass Base Housing Gasket
Other customers have complained about the gasket on the top lid of the glass base / and the lid that screws on top of it. If this seal is dirty or not properly seated or installed, then you can get some water leak from the top lid of the glass base as you are smoking and possibly notice some leaking smoke on a purge. This is a relatively easy fix, any seal has to be sealed properly and clean from debris for it to work, so just something you want to make sure you check whenever you clean the hookah or refill the base and you will be good.
Cleaning the Carbine 2.0 Can Be Time Consuming
Lastly, cleaning can be difficult in some areas. While every part is extremely easy to access because everything disassembles, exterior areas like the cover for the glass base can get some dirt stuck in the groves that would be harder to clean and require more meticulous effort. Some customers have mentioned this as well.
Final Thoughts and Long-Term Customer Enthusiasm
As you can see, we did our best to highlight all of the negatives of this hookah. It is important to keep in mind that everything has negatives, just as every hookah will have its shortcomings. The real question is did these minor inconveniences turn any owners off. And the answer is pretty emphatically no. Every owner we’ve talked to, loves their SB Carbine, and some of them have even purchased another Carbine 2.0 for use at a different location.
We believe that most owners of the SB Carbine 2.0 would probably buy a Carbine 3.0 if one comes out. And that always tells the story – when a customer is willing to buy another carbine hookah pipe or the newest model that comes out to replace it – as a brand you are doing something right!
Does Coals N Bowls Recommend Buying The Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 Modern Hookah Pipe?
So there it is. If you are looking for a conversation piece, that has some neat features a lot of hookahs don’t have, and something that actually smokes better than most hookahs out there, buy the Starbuzz Carbine 2.0. Here at Coals N Bowls, due to customer enthusiasm, uniqueness, features, and smoking performance, we highly recommend buying the Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 hookah. It even made our Best Hookahs: The Ultimate Hookah Pipe Buying Guide for 2022. Be sure to read this guide!
Are Starbuzz Carbines Replacement Parts Easy To Find?The Starbuzz Carbine 2.0, being the second generation of the Carbine hookahs, has a good reliability track record of reliability. All the replacement parts you would need are available online. The most common replacement part is the Starbuzz Carbine replacement base which isn’t easy to break, but as with any glass part, it can break. We have a handful of customers that have ordered two or three carbine replacement glass bases from us, but most owners haven’t had any issues with their glass bases. Another thing that can go wrong is the 4 antenna legs of the Starbuzz Carbine can require replacement if mishandled enough, but this is something we don’t really notice as much with the Carbine. The glass base replacement is by far the most required replacement part of the Carbine 2.0 to date. The replacement glass base is the same glass as the original glass shipped with the sb carbine, and it fits just like the original one does, so if you do need a replacement we have you covered.
Other than that the SB Carbine might need some odd replacement parts for individual problems, like the rotator bearing for example, and for those customers we end up ordering what is required from Starbuzz and shipping it out.
Where Is The Best Place To Buy The Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 Hookah Online?
So where do you buy your Carbine 2.0 Hookah from? There are a lot of hookah shops offline, but the chances they carry the carbine is very slim. We are in Southern California so the hookah scene is a little more prominent here, and even at hookah smoke shops which are more rare nowadays, it would be very hard to find a Carbine 2.0 modern hookah pipe for sale.
So naturally the best place to buy a Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 hookah is online. You will find a better supply of Starbuzz hookahs online, and be able to easily and securely make a purchase. Shipping is quick, and you will notice that customer service can be reached 24 /7. When looking for hookahs for sale online, Coals N Bowls understands that what matters most to you more than just the price is that you get a brand new hookah, not one that is used. You also want the hookah to be shipped quickly, and free shipping would be nice. And you want the hookah packaged well so nothing is broken.
Coals N Bowls has been able to deliver on all of the concerns of its online customers, which is why we are one of the fastest growing hookah companies in the USA. Buy your Starbuzz Carbine 2.0 from Coals N Bowls today, you will qualify for free shipping, we ship every order quickly usually within 48 hours at the latest, and we make sure it arrives there in one piece, not many :).
We want to thank you for taking the time to read this article. If you enjoyed it, please feel free to share it with your friends and on social media. If you have any questions about the hookah discussed here or want help in purchasing it, or if you just want to continue the discussion, feel free to reach out to us. Thank you!