What’s the Difference Between THCP and Delta-8?

Using Cannabis to Create a Preroll for Smoking

Key Takeaways 

  • THCP and Delta-8 are naturally occurring cannabinoids found in hemp and cannabis plants. 
  • While they have similar effects, THCP is known to be up to 33 times stronger than traditional THC, while Delta-8 yields a more mellow effect. 
  • Choosing a specific cannabinoid product can be difficult with the saturation of options out there, trust us to help you make the best decision possible.

Difference Between Delta-8 and THCP

Delta-8 is a naturally occurring cannabinoid found in hemp and cannabis plants. However, it occurs in trace amounts in these plants and is usually synthesized from other natural compounds for mass production. Though Delta-8 delivers psychoactive properties, it will give you a smoother, more mellow high compared to traditional THC products (delta-9 THC). For more information about Delta-8 check out MUNCHIES! complete guide.

Discovered in 2019, Tetrahydrocannabiphorol (THCP) is a rare gem among cannabinoids, making it an extremely sought-after product within the cannabis community. It makes up about 1% of the cannabis plant’s composition, and that’s only if it is found at all, as it isn’t present in every cannabis strain. Although THCP shares similarities with delta-9 THC, it has the potential to offer a more intense and longer-lasting experience, with effects known to be up to 30 times stronger than regular THC. For more information about THCP check Imperial’s complete guide.

THCP vs. Delta-8: Extraction Process

Both Delta-8 and THCP can be extracted using similar processes – typically involving a series of steps including harvesting, drying, curing, and extraction, which may include solvents, winterization, decarboxylation, and isolation and purification techniques.

However, it’s worth noting that Delta-8 and THCP are found in only trace or limited amounts in cannabis and hemp plants. Because of this scarcity, they are often synthesized from more abundant compounds found in hemp.

For example, Delta-8 is often produced by converting CBD through a process called isomerization, as CBD is more readily available. Similarly, THCP is synthesized by modifying CBD using chromatography.

Model of a Chemical Structure

Photo by Ayush Kumar on Unsplash

Delta-8 and THCP vs Delta-9 (THC)

Although the extraction and production methods of Delta-8 and THCP are similar, they have very different compound structures. 

On the one hand, Delta-8 is an isomer of Delta-9, meaning it has an identical chemical formula to Delta-9, but in a different arrangement. The difference between them is the position of a double bond on the chain of carbon atoms. So, for Delta-8 this double bond is on the eighth carbon atom, while for Delta-9, the double bond is on the ninth carbon atom.

On the other hand, the molecular structure of THCP is markedly different. THCP has a more extended alkyl side chain (the “tail” of atoms that extends out from the bottom of the largest part of the molecule). 

This means that THCP has an extensive side chain with seven carbon atoms instead of Delta-9’s five carbon atoms. However, you should note that its oversized side chain allows THCP to more readily bind with human CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors. As a result, its effects are often more potent in the brain and body than Delta-9 and Delta-8.

Delta-8 vs. THCP: Effects & Potency

While research is still being conducted on both of these cannabinoids, it’s important to note that they are both psychoactive and that THCP is much more potent. According to some experts, THCP can bind with the CB1 receptors in the body 33 times more than THC. Therefore, it is expected to be far stronger than Delta-8 THC.

What are the Effects of Delta-8?

The potential effects delivered by Delta-8 are very similar to Delta-9 but often much lighter – when using Delta-8 you can expect:

  • Heightened creativity
  • Improved mood
  • Feelings of euphoria

What are the Effects of THCP?

Although known to be much stronger, the reported effects of THCP are very similar to those of traditional THC including: 

  • Euphoria 
  • Appetite Stimulation 
  • Relaxation
  • Sleep Aid
  • Mood Boost

Joint that is Lit and Resting on an Ashtray

Photo by Dad Grass on Unsplash

How to Use Delta-8 & THCP

Either of these cannabinoids can be developed into a variety of products, including:

  • Edibles – This essentially means ingesting cannabinoids in food form. You can easily find gummies and other edibles if smoking isn’t your thing. Exercise caution and wait for effects to kick in before taking more. 
  • Vaping – This is the fastest-acting of all the ways to use THC. When you vape THC it enters your system through your lungs and swiftly moves to your bloodstream.
  • Tinctures – You take tinctures by placing them under your tongue. They also take about an hour before their effects kick in.
  • Smoking – Smoking is also a quick way to feel the effects of cannabinoids.

*The best way to enjoy will differ for each person based on what they need or prefer.*

Delta-8 vs. THCP: Which is Right for You?

While there’s no one-size-fits-all solution for which cannabinoid is best, the most foolproof method is testing out different products and seeing which works best for you. Some people prefer a more mellow high, which can be obtained from using Delta-8 products, while others prefer the more intense experience yielded from THCP. Each enjoyer is unique and there are a variety of products for each cannabinoid, so you can use what suits you best. 

As always, we recommend the “low and slow” method – it’s always best to try a smaller amount and wait for the effects to kick in before upping your dose. 

Due to its mild psychoactive effects, new users and users seeking something “light” would typically opt for Delta-8 over THCP. 

If you’re looking for a more intense high experience, then you can consider THCP. However, like every other cannabinoid, it is important to exercise caution when trying THCP for the first time. Take it slow and start with smaller doses to ensure that your tolerance level is up to speed.

Where to Purchase Delta-8 & THCP

If you’re in search of safe and enjoyable THCP products, look no further than our Imperial Extraction online shop. Check out our selection of flavorful and universal vape pen cartridges, or if you’re seeking something more high-end, explore our proprietary Vape Pod Battery system for the smoothest smoking experience out there.

In the market for Delta-8 products? MUNCHIES! has you covered. From gummies to vapes, our partners over at MUNCHIES! can satisfy all of your Delta-8 needs. Click here to view their entire line of exceptional products.

Final Thoughts

THCP and Delta-8 are both naturally occurring cannabinoids with much in common. However, they also have several distinctive differences, especially in their potency and chemical makeup. Whether you’re looking for something mellow to chill you out, or seeking a stronger experience than what you’re used to, it’s always important to get to know your cannabinoids before enjoying. 

**(Disclaimer reminder: This article is not medical advice. It is based on anecdotal user experience alone. If you are thinking about incorporating cannabis (delta-8 THC, delta-9 THC, CBD, etc) into your medicinal routine, please consult a healthcare professional. Do not stop taking any prescribed medications without first consulting your doctor.)** 

Disclaimer: This article was written in March 2024 and reflects the United States’ laws that were current at that time. Because cannabis laws in the United States laws are subject to change at any time, please make sure that you are always staying up to date on your federal, state, and local county’s cannabis laws. Additionally, we are NOT encouraging anyone to break the law––we are simply showing people ways to legally and discreetly bring their cannabis products along with them on their travels so that they may have access to those products when they reach their intended destination.

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