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OfflineSugabearcrisp
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Registered: 10/01/21
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suggest a grow light
    #857083 - 05/30/22 07:58 AM (2 months, 7 days ago)

Been over a decade since I was actively growing. When I was growing I use CFLs for veg and HPS HID for flower and I realise everything is LED now but not sure what makes a good LED grow lamp.

So I am looking for suggestions for something for seedling and veg stage. Would like to spend less than $75 and light a 2'x2' area. Heat production is not an issue as the veg area is in a cool basement


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Offlineyoosername
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Re: suggest a grow light [Re: Sugabearcrisp]
    #857084 - 05/30/22 10:06 AM (2 months, 7 days ago)

That budget makes it tough.  With modern LED, you want at least 30 watts per square foot, so for a 4 sqft area that'd be 120 watts.  Expect to pay around $1 per watt for a prebuilt fixture.

On the cheaper end you could go with a used blurple, which can sometimes be found for free on craigslist.  Another option would be DIY if you are so inclined.  A bunch of 2' strips on a frame with a driver is the majority of what you'd need.


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Offlineyoosername
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Re: suggest a grow light [Re: yoosername]
    #857085 - 05/30/22 10:22 AM (2 months, 7 days ago)

Actually if you're only going to use it for veg, you could probably get away with around 15-20 watts per square foot.  An HLG 65 from Horticultural Lighting Group would work well enough, they are $100 on amazon.

My sister is using cheap LED shop lights for her seedlings, not the most efficient or the best color temperature but they still work.  There are also tons of cheap knock off LED grow lights on the market, they are usually less efficient and break sooner than name brand lights which is why I'd avoid them.


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OfflineSugabearcrisp
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Re: suggest a grow light [Re: yoosername]
    #857091 - 05/31/22 08:52 PM (2 months, 5 days ago)

Thanks, I will check the HLG 65 out


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OfflineSugabearcrisp
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Re: suggest a grow light [Re: yoosername]
    #857118 - 06/04/22 09:07 AM (2 months, 2 days ago)



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Offlineyoosername
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Re: suggest a grow light [Re: Sugabearcrisp]
    #857121 - 06/04/22 11:25 AM (2 months, 2 days ago)

As long as you don't mind having slightly less efficient diodes, that one should work.  It seems to use the lm281b+ diodes, whereas most of the better lights use lm301b or h's.  Also claims to have 730nm, which is far red.  You'd have to read up on the effects of far red to determine if that's something you'd want, I believe increased internode spacing is one of them.  Bruce Bugbee has some good videos on it.

That said it is a knock off light, so who knows how long it will last.  It does at least come with a 2 year warranty.

One of the reviews mentioned it didn't turn all the way off when hooked up to a timer, which is something I've heard about on other Chinese lights, though that might have more to do with the timers than the lights.


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OfflineSugabearcrisp
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Registered: 10/01/21
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Re: suggest a grow light [Re: yoosername]
    #857126 - 06/04/22 05:24 PM (2 months, 2 days ago)

Yeah my physics degree says a timer shouldn't allow any flow of current in the off mode, but I can also imagine that a low voltage cut off in a better quality light could prevent that (as would a better quality timer probably).

This will be used for seedlings and veg once year before going outdoors so I think the budget option might suffice.


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Offlineyoosername
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Re: suggest a grow light [Re: Sugabearcrisp]
    #857145 - 06/04/22 09:43 PM (2 months, 1 day ago)

In that case yeah, no need to spend big bucks if you're never going to flower under it. 

Several years ago I bought a bunch of LEDs but never got around to setting up my new grow area, so the only one I'm using is currently lighting a bunch of veggie seedlings and tomato clones.  It's powered down to 30 watts, but it can handle 120 or more than twice that with active cooling.. I bought 18 of them :facepalm:.


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OfflineGr8ful frodo
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Registered: 03/09/19
Posts: 25
Last seen: 1 month, 5 days
Re: suggest a grow light [Re: yoosername]
    #857351 - 06/19/22 11:18 PM (1 month, 17 days ago)

Save up money. Mars hydro ts1000 does 2x2 well and it's cheap


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