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LED grow lights strong enough?

I use leds, not something like this small. But 1515 lux's dont seem bright enough, Id say no. Mine uses about 300 watts, (true watts) if that puts in in prospective of how powerful mine is. Its just so hard to say unless you give it a try, because leds technology still needs so much research on plant its hard to really tell unless you actually try it.
A measurement of lux for a blue/red LED fixture is completely useless. Lux/lumens are a measurement of light perceived by the human eye and not the actual useful light to the plant.

Wattage is also not a good indicator of how good/bad lighting is just how much power the fixture is using. I have a heli under 4 LEDs running about 5W in a 7" W X 13" H X 12" D space that is nice and red.

Since I have never used any LED light panels and ALL the premade ones I've seen in person are just bad, I can not comment on them. If you have any DIY skills I'd look into making your own. There are a good amount of threads in the last year on DIY LEDs.

Something to keep in mind...if you are growing plants under red/blue lighting it is VERY hard to tell the condition of your plant without a flashlight :)
a good LED driver by itself is 30 dollars... so 30 dollars for 225 leds, plus driver, plus fixture... I doubt that those lights are going to be anything like theyre saying
That is great advice RSS, I agree. DIY systems also have room for adjustments which can come in handy.
Is 11,050lumens a good enough strenght for neps?
wolfram, don't waste your money (and energy) on these. I have one which uses similar technology (mine is in a linear form). They use old style DIP LEDs, whose efficiency is very low. Here is a bit of easy-to-read info:

This page says 35-80lumen/W for DIP (I assume for white LEDs). That is lower than T8 florescent bulbs. Lumen is not a good measure for red/blue type LEDs as RSS pointed out. But white LEDs are basically blue LED + phosphors. So if the white LEDs are inefficient, it's likely the monochromatic LEDs of similar technology is inefficient. DIP LEDs can't manage the heat issues easily, so this is a part of the reason for the inefficiency.

You can squeeze out 140-150lm/W from modern white LEDs (driven soft) in comparison.

Hyperikon hybrid T8 LED seems to have a promising spec (2200 lumen per 18W, which is 122 lm/W). If you can't do DIY and If you can't initially afford the efficient fixtures, this might be a good fit. It can be used with T8 ballast, but it is better to modify the wiring to remove the ballast (for better efficiency).

If you can make a group buy (direct from China), I recently found a highly efficient T8 LEDs (Sunritek, which can be found in Alibaba). They were tested to have 140-150lm/W and near the top efficiency. I was skeptical at first (most of the Chinese ones I tested were pretty disappointing), but after they told me about their design, it is possible. They are driving Epistar 2830 at very soft driving current (35mA). I should be receiving these next week (and I'll see how it works agains my other DIY LEDs). Their older model was tested here and it has the top efficiency:


The reason I said "group buy" is that you need to order 20 or more to make the shipping cost reasonable. For example, I got 20 x $10, and shipping is about $100, so it became about $15 per bulb. Not a bad price for 150lm/W.

House-hold LED bulbs can be used, but their efficiency isn't so high yet. Nanoleaf has one of the highest efficiency among A-type bulbs, but it is quite costly at first.
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I'd like to know what results you get with the Sunritek, naoki. I'd really like to switch over to LEDs, but I've been waiting for them to come down in price and go up in efficiency.
  • #10
Here are two Heli's growing under 4 of the CREE LEDs running around 5-6W total power (1.25-1.5W each) lighting an area of 7" X 12". 2 Cool White and 2 Warm white LEDs. The kit is a http://www.rapidled.com/4-led-solderless-moonlight-kit/ with a $10 heatsink (they no longer sell :-(), add with that 4 lenses and the entire lighting was around $37 + shipping. I generally order over $200 for free shipping so I can avoid that added cost. Oh and you would need some sort of thermal adhesive if your don't have any to "glue" the lenses to the leds (http://www.rapidled.com/arctic-alumina-thermal-adhesive/ or just hit up a DIY type local computer store and buy some for much less $$$).

These Heli's are under a "test" environment so don't hold the health of the plants as a factor. The coloration is why I'm posting photo's. If your interested in the "test" it is located here http://www.terraforums.com/forums/s...ng-It!-Thermoelectric-Cooling-Fun!?highlight=

Keep in mind this is from 4 LEDs using at a maximum of 6W of power lighting a 7" X 12" area.
DSC_0702 by randallsimpson, on Flickr
DSC_0704 by randallsimpson, on Flickr
  • #11
This is what mine look like under the setup Ive got. As you can tell, with the new growth its def greener after turning down the lights haha.