420 Magazine Background

Lighting Purchase

OlderStoner

Well-Known Member
I'm getting to the flowering stage and want to make the right decision on this purchase. First off, the hydroponics supply store which is nearby has a very friendly staff who sells this stuff...at a very high markup as compared to on-line. As much as I'd love to give them an order, I can't see paying $$$ more for the same item I can get on-line at a discount.

I'm wanting to buy at least two (2) reflector units very similar to this one. Is this a good unit, and is the price comparable to other on-line retailers?

I want to get reflectors that will work with both MH and HPS. Is swapping out the type of light a simple task with a unit like this one?

Can anyone make some more recommendations. This is going to end up being a major purchase and I want to make the best choice for my grow room. Which BTW I will most likely purchase a tent or build some partitions to keep the space around 72" x 72" x 108".
 

TanR

New Member
Hi OlderStoner (hereafter known as OS).

I'm still a bit of a newb so take my thoughts with a grain of salt. I'm sure others will add additional thoughts. Other than not making the mistake of buying an open air reflector like I did, I think one reflector is going to be very similar to another. I did a quick Amaz*n search for "Air cooled reflector hood" and found a bunch ranging from $75.00 to over $200.00. I just cannot believe there is $125.00+ dollars difference in the performance of one to another.

It seems to me that there might be a few features that are probably handy to have like a hinged glass as opposed to sliding the glass in an out, but as long as the interior has a hammered aluminum finish (as opposed to a smooth finish) I just can't imagine for growers like you it would make enough difference to warrant the additional cost. And yes, changing the type of light is truly as simple as unscrewing one bulb (only when it's cool) and screwing in the other. They use the same socket so nothing tricky about it.

Things to notice when comparing different reflector offers might include: Make sure it's prewired with the cord and socket; Does the reflector come with any ratchet pullies or other type device to hang it (or is that extra); Make sure the cord is at least 12' and preferably 15' so you can locate your ballast outside your grow room if you want to (heat issues); and perhaps any shipping costs if applicable.

Happy shopping and happy growing.
 

JJ Bones

Nug of the Month: Feb 2013
I always encourage people to support their local stores because it's the right thing to do. It really helps your community.

However if you just want to order online, you can contact us. We have what you need and a coupon code you can use. Email me if you have questions joey@perfectgardens.com

That reflector is good, all reflectors can handle both MH/HPS the ballast is what dictates that however even then most modern ballasts run both.
 

TanR

New Member
OS,

Ed Rosenthal, the author of that article/response, is widely regarded as a foremost expert in cannabis growing having authored one of the first books specifically and unabashedly about growing cannabis almost 40 years ago (Marijuana Growers Handbook). He has also been a leading activist in pushing for legalization of cannabis, and was a columnist for "High Times" as far back as the 80's.

Now, with that said, I'll add the caveat that I am not an expert in lighting and in particular the lighting needs of cannabis at various stages of growth. I'm guilty of following the tried and true methods used by other growers for years, instead of rocking the boat. Using a MH bulb only adds $25 or so for the extra bulb to the cost of equipment purchased so I kind of take the easy path instead of trying to reinvent the wheel on that topic.

If you think about the nature of the sun in fall, as winter approaches (the time when outdoor plants would be finishing their bloom cycle) it is lower in the sky and provides light more in the red spectrum than it did during the summer when more directly overhead and providing light more in the blue spectrum. Attempting to mimic this indoors is the reason growers have gravitated toward use of HPS bulbs during the budding cycle and MH during the vegetative stage.

Ed is correct that most HPS bulbs have a higher lumen output, than the same wattage MH bulb. I fully believe he is also correct that one can use only one bulb (probably either MH or HPS) for an entire grow. However, it's also pretty widely understood that using a HPS bulb during the vegetative period will cause plants to grow in an elongated manner (taller plants) with greater distance between the nodes and ultimately the bud sites. This "stretch" provides a challenge to indoor growers as most have difficulty getting enough light to the bud sites lower on the plant to allow their full development. Most growers choose shorter, bushier plants encouraged by the use of MH during veg. so that lights can reach, and encourage full bud development, a greater percentage of the plant.

Oh, and your absolutely right that everything on the internet is correct. :11::laugh::19:
 

Hosebomber

New Member
Ed is a great guy and has done a lot for the movement. However, his knowledge on lighting and plant grow is and has been lacking for decades. TanR is right, the HPS will cause stretching and elongation and MH will promote tighter inter node length. The overall amount of growth in total biomass will go to the MH every time. If you are looking simply at flower production HPS will win in mass. However, an HPS does not have 10-20% more output. They generally have less radiant flux or total power output than an MH bulb of equal power. They do have a higher lumen output due to the fact that lumen is measurement of brightness to the human eye which sees things best at a frequency of 502-532nm (525nm is considered the median). HPS bulbs produce a very large portion of their light in this range.
 

TanR

New Member
Thanks Hosebomber.

OS, Hosebomber IS an expert in lighting and in particular the lighting needs of cannabis at various stages of growth.
 

Fuzzy Duck

Well-Known Member
Alternatively you could use a dual spectrum HID/HPS... theirs more than a few brands which which offer these bulbs for all stages of growth :thumb:
 

norman

New Member
some folks round these parts run ceramic metal halide lights- they are MH bulbs that run off of HPS (old fashioned, buzzing magnetic, not cheap new fangled dimmable digital) ballasts. They were designed as replacements for warehouses and workshops running the older HPS ballasts but desiring whiter light.

They just happen to provide the closest thing to the sun's spectra (if one discounts plasma lights, etc.) while retaining good efficiency overall.

They are available from any good electrical/lighting supplier (not grow shops, mostly) and they aren't especially expensive.... much cheaper than e.g., horticultural branded HPS bulbs.

Search the forums for more info.
 

OlderStoner

Well-Known Member
Okay, back again for some more expert opinion here. I found this and they claim they have found the secret. The video is convincing. Does anyone have an opinion on the claims made in this video?
 

norman

New Member
Okay, back again for some more expert opinion here. I found this and they claim they have found the secret. The video is convincing. Does anyone have an opinion on the claims made in this video?

I briefly reviewed the pdf files, and my short answer is that it looks like a nice, but reeeeaaalllyyy pricey, reflector.

I do not doubt that their product sends light in a more even fashion than horizontal reflectors; it looks very much like a scaled up version of reflectors in nice LED flashlights. I do strongly doubt that there is 30% more light overall compared to any other system, esp. horizontal.

Why?

Because essentially 100% of the light output of the bulb must bounce off of the reflector at least once. And very few materials approach even 90 or 95% reflectivity. So right away, 5-10% of light is lost by reflectance. Plus another few percent lost due to the glass that acts to keep the heat in. Front glass can reflect or absorb something like 10% more light, unless it's antireflective... and it's still several percent worse than no glass. It's true for flashlights, micro/telescopes, or anything else that relies on transmission of light through glass.

So.... in the area right under the lamp, yeah, it's got a nice beam shape and relatively little light going astray. But the asserted magic 30% more light? Bullshit.

Besides... that's why the inside of your grow room is white or foil or mylar anyhow. (architectural flat white paint, IIRC, is the most reflective thing one can use...)

Honestly, for my buck, if perfect illumination was my goal I'd spend the time and money to hang a vertical bulb naked (with a top reflector only) in the middle of a circular grow room with plants essentially covering the walls. No loss to reflectors, glass, or anything else- just bulb-air-leaf. I remember seeing a great homemade setup here but can't recall exactly who had it. I wanna say Gator, but I dunno. It was neato... used coir in 2L soda bottles hooked up to drainage, and simply watered to waste. Really really efficient, smart design, and easy to run- my kind of tech.
 

JJ Bones

Nug of the Month: Feb 2013
The OG Lite is legit, I've seen them in person and we have a video about them.

They are the reflector you buy if you are the guy wants to get cutting edge technology and you enjoy being somewhat of a pioneer in what you do.

Otherwise it's too expensive.
 

OlderStoner

Well-Known Member
The OG Lite is legit, I've seen them in person and we have a video about them.

They are the reflector you buy if you are the guy wants to get cutting edge technology and you enjoy being somewhat of a pioneer in what you do.

Otherwise it's too expensive.

Thanks for the info guys. I am just like you referred to here...on a tighter budget than normal. I took the plunge yesterday and purchased this kit from Access Hydroponics. They are listed as a sponsor here at 420 but what got to me was the price. It's not often I have +$400 to drop into a hobby, but this light kit looks like it will do the trick, and considering the local shops wanted more than $600 for similar setups I took the chance here. I have not read any reviews on that ballast other than the ones on their site and it comes with a warranty. My goal is to move these crops under 12/12 lighting in less than 2 weeks. I just got notified that the package is already with the shipper so it won't be long now before I can test this out and give a full review. So far, Access gets high points from me for having an easy to use website and very competitive pricing.
 

TanR

New Member
Congrats on the purchase OS! I'm excited for you to receive your new light and get it working for you.
 
Top Bottom