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Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 04/20/08
Posts: 17,919
Last seen: 2 years, 4 months
About Lights
    #29445 - 05/14/08 02:39 PM (8 years, 5 months ago)

Originally posted by sublimstri on the Shroomery, great resource for lighting information


Domestic Lights:
Figure 5.6 - A domestic bulb. Also called an
incandescent light source.
These are the lights you find in use around
your house. These lights come in all sizes and
wattage - 30 watts to 150 watt. These lights
are not suitable for growing because of their
low light intensity and bad colour spectrum.

Fluorescent Tube Lights:
Figure 5.7 and 5.8 - These are examples of some fluro
fixtures and bulbs that can be bought in most
hardware stores.
These lights are the long industrial lights
that are found in many a school and work place.
These lights come in nearly all lengths and
sizes. 2 to 10 feet are the main sizes that are
out there. They also run between 10 watts and
300 watts. These lights are okay for growing
but they provide little light and are hard to
set up properly. They also are not in best
light spectrum for Cannabis plants to grow in.

Halogen Lights:
Figure 5.9 - A Halogen light.
Halogen lights are the small lights that
can be seen on the outside of factories for
flood lighting the grounds during the night.
They are usually small and black. These lights
can range anywhere between 75watts and
Halogens get extremely hot and can provide
an unsuitable condition for growing Cannabis
under. They are not recommended because they
are dangerous to use indoors for growing. They
are also not in the best light spectrum for
growing Cannabis.

Fluorescent White Tube Lights:
These are not in use much and are very
similar to the Fluorescent lights except they
are in the correct growing spectrum. These
lights are not very strong and do not range
much above 200watts. They are only recommend
for growers who do not want to grow full
flowering cannabis plants.
Figure 5.10 - White Tube Light.
Horticultural Lights:
These lights are professional horticultural
lights. They are developed by horticultural
lighting companies and are tested to suit
growing plants indoors. These lights are
commonly called HID (High Intensity Discharge).
Like the former lights these also come in kits
with bulb, reflector, ballast and timer. They
also come in different wattage and different
shapes and sizes. If you want to grow good bud
then you need a HID. A HID is the second most
important purchase you will make next to
choosing your strain.
Metal Halide (MH) and Mercury Vapour (MV):
The lights are HID lights and are used for
the seedling and vegetative growth stages of
your plant. They can also be used for flowering
and are quite good too. They come in all shapes
and sizes and range from 75W - 4000watts. These
lights are very common and are a good kit for
the indoor Cannabis grower.
Mercury Vapour is not as common as it used
to be. It has almost been replaced by Metal
Halide now. If you have a choice between the
two it is best to stay with the new MH kits. MV
also has a tendency to be slightly out of the
optimal spectrum range.
High Pressure Sodium (HPS):
This is the lighting choice of many a
Cannabis Cultivator. These lights come in all
shapes and sizes and have a range of 75watts -
4000watts. These lights are in the perfect
spectrum for growing cannabis and come highly
Figure 5.11 - This is an example of a HPS and also a
MH Light system. There is nothing at face value to
indicate that the light is a HPS or a MH. To check
this out we need to look at the ballast and the bulb
and read what is says about the type of light system
that it is. MH lights tend to give off a blue tone,
while HPS tend to give off an orange tone.
The first thing to say is that some growers
have a MH set-up for seedlings and vegetative
growth and a HPS for flowering. The HPS is a
better flowering lamp, while the MH is a better
veg lamp. If we can only afford one we should
get a HPS. Both MH and HPS can be used for
vegetative growth and flowering. However since
we are growing for bud, we should try to get
the best HPS we can.
The next thing they look for is the light
kit itself. Check to see that the light is
certified and is in good shape. Then check to
see if the light is air-cooled. Some of these
lights have a fan built in which keeps the
light cool. If you see this then you know that
you are going to need somewhere to vent your
air. This may mean that you need to adjust a
wall in your grow area so that the air is
extracted from the light.
Figure 5.12 - This picture shows two air-cooled hoods
attached to their respective air ducts. This
photograph is by Chimera.
Lights that are air-cooled (Figure 5.12)
tend to last longer and do not heat up your
grow area that much. Most expert growers like
to keep a room at a stable controllable
temperature and use these air-cooled lights to
achieve that. If your light is not air-cooled
then you will have to build an air vent and fan
in your grow room wall to keep the temperatures
under control. Cannabis leaves will burn if
placed too close to a HID light.
Figure 5.13 - This is a water-cooled light system.
These inventions have been around for awhile but have
not caught on that much because they require a good
bit of work. A constant pump of cool water must be
circulated into and out of the light system.
The next thing to check is how the light is
supported. Does it require a light stand or
does it require to be hung from the ceiling. In
most cases you will be able to make your own
stand if you feel that you are not willing to
fasten a few hooks and chains to your ceiling.
Also check to see if the electrical fittings
suit your needs. Will they plug straight into
your system at home or do you need an adapter?
Maybe you might require an extension cord with
your purchase. Most HID kits can only take a
specific wattage of bulb and a certain type of
bulb. If you have a 600W HPS system, then you
should only use 600W HPS bulbs. Some lighting
kits have something called a 'switchable
ballast' (Figure 5.14). This means that you use
both MH and HPS lights with the system. Check
your kit for further details.
Figure 5.14 - This is a picture of what the switch
looks like on a ballast that can take 2 HID types.
The next thing to look for is the
guarantee. Check to see what the manufacturer
has said about this light and how long the
guarantee is for. Last but not least is the
most important part of your light. The wattage
and lumens.
HID Lights can range anywhere between 75W
and 4000W. In general the stronger the wattage
the more light that bulb will produce. However
we must also consider another factor and that
factor is called Lumens. Lumens are the correct
way of measuring how much light per square foot
a bulb emits. Lumens and wattage do go hand in
hand but can vary a large amount between
systems. The better the lighting kit, the
better the lumens it will cast. Lumens have
more to do with the design of the light than
the wattage of the light itself. Some 600W
lights may give the same lumens as a 400W
light. Have a look at this chart:
This is interesting because we have two
types of HPS lights using the same bulb wattage
and one of the types is casting more Lumens
than the other. The reason for this is that the
higher lumens kit is better quality than the
other. So we now know that some lighting kits
produce better Lumens than others. Check
through HID lighting kits and look at how many
lumens they cast. This is a good indicator of
how professional that light is. Also a 4000W
HID is too much for one single plant. A 1K bulb
is the maximum limit per light you should use.
Use several 1K bulbs if you need more light. A
4K bulb will bleach Cannabis and is very hot.
M.V 175 8000
M.H 400 36000
H.P.S 600 45000
H.P.S 600 36000
Now for the big question. How many Lumens
do I need? Well this depends on three things.
(1) How much do you want to spend? (2) How many
plants do you have? (3) How big is your grow
You do not want to go less than 2500
Lumens, even for one plant. You want to get the
best so you need to hit the 45000 mark or more.
In general one light that casts 45000 lumens is
enough to cover a workspace of about 3 feet by
3 feet. This is quite an average space and you
will probably get anything between 6 - 9 plants
in that area. Again we must keep in mind the
strain that we are growing. One large sativa
plant can cover a 9 square foot grow area in no
time. Short indica plants are different. You
can get maybe 12 plants into a 9 square foot
grow area. If you really want to pump up your
plants then you may consider a lamp that casts
100,000 Lumens or more. If you want a bigger
grow area then you may consider 2 lamps that
cast 100,000 Lumens each. All is relative to
how much you want to grow and the size of your
grow room.
Let’s say for the record that we would like
to grow 4 plants. Then what we should aim for
is a light that casts 45000 Lumens. This means
we should buy a 600-Watt HID system. Let’s say
we want to pump up our available light to
around 60,000 Lumens. This means we should buy
a 1000-Watt HID system. If our area is bigger
we might need 2 or more 1000-watt HID lights to
achieve this. It all very respective to the 3
elements we mentioned above.
There is nothing wrong if you want to use a
1000-watt HID light on 2 plants. They will grow
bigger and better. The only thing is, do we
really want to spend all that money on the
light and the electricity bill? HID lights
range anywhere between $220/£200 and $700/£670
for a full kit. You may be able to buy the
parts and build your own, but this is only
recommended if you have some experience with
lights first. A 600W HPS kit should cost about
$250/£230. This is money well spent if you want
great plants with big buds.
Over time you will understand more about
grow rooms and how to light them properly. With
experience you should be able to tell what
light suits your needs. As a general rule, when
in doubt buy a 400W HPS or better.

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Registered: 06/16/09
Posts: 5
Last seen: 6 years, 9 months
Re: About Lights [Re: Picklez]
    #245837 - 07/04/09 02:30 AM (7 years, 3 months ago)

I'm not quite sure how I stumbled upon this thread but I think it's worth mentioning that this was taken directly out of the Cannabis Grow Bible by Greg Green. It's a worthwhile read if you're new to growing and looking to learn something.

There can be only none!

"Prohibition...goes beyond the bounds of reason in that it attempts to control a man's appetite by legislation and makes a crime out of things that are not crimes. A prohibition law strikes a blow at the very principles upon which our government was founded."
-- Abraham Lincoln, December, 1840

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