Also feel free to check out my main page about cannabis grow lights! This page talks just about HPS grow lights while the other page covers all grow lights.
A full grow light system contains a ballast, a reflector/hood, a bulb, cords and plug, and some systems even include the hanging equipment. I personally recommend starting with a full light system that is made to go together as opposed to trying to buy all the pieces separately and put them together. Whenever you are buying from any grow light seller, make sure that they are a reputable seller and not some guy selling lights out of his garage. There’s nothing worse than spending hundreds of dollars for equipment that is broken or doesn’t work properly. When buying from unrespectable sellers, you may run into customer services issues if you need to return something. I personally like Amazon.com because they have a great return policy and will stand behind you, the customer, if there’s a problem with one of their sellers.
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HPS grow lights are not as well suited for grow areas that have…
Another consideration when using HPS lights for a grow area that has a natural temperature that is higher than 65 degrees(F) or 18.3 degrees(C), is that you will need to set up some sort of exhaust system to control heat. A simple exhaust system that consists of some tubing/ducting and an exhaust fan will do the trick most of the time. As long as you have a way to get air in and out of the grow area, you’re golden.
While magnetic ballasts are cheaper, a digital ballast will start up more quickly, run silently, produce less heat, last longer, and even produce more lumens (light) than a magnetic ballast. More light means more yield and digital ballasts can somtimes produce 20-30% more light than a similar bulb on a magnetic ballast. What’s more, a digital ballast may extend the life of your bulbs so you have to buy new bulbs less often. There really is no comparison in quality between a digital and magnetic ballast, the digital ballast is just better. A magnetic ballast can take up to 20 minutes to start up, and tends to run noisy and inefficiently while producing less light and burning through more bulbs. If at all possible, spend the couple of extra bucks and get the digital ballast!
Does this article answer our very first question? Let’s break it down and see. Upon further investigation, the crops in question were grown entirely under each light source. Not in a veg room under one type of light and then moved to flower. For this reason, the HPS plants stretched in veg and were not off to a healthy start!
Do this math with your LEDs as well. The PL Light TopLED is 320 watts so the BTUs will be 1092 BTUs. While that looks like a big savings it will take at least two times the amount of our LEDs to get to the same light level as a 1000w HPS. On the other side of this argument is that the LED fixtures do not provide the radiant heat as HPS and your crop roots will perform better with warmth. It is proven that there is a direct correlation between heat and crop production. Plants grow slower, producing less fruit the colder they are. In northern climates many growers rely on the heat from HPS to warm their crops.
Cannabis Research in Canada
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These claims are not totally bogus however. We are now seeing real results that a bit more blue light in flower or at the very end of the flowering stage does increase terpenes/THC levels. Depending on where you search you will find these amounts vary from minimal 3-5% to unreal amounts of 26-38% as in this article from HortiDaily supplied by an LED manufacturer.