July 12, 2019
LED Vs HPS – Which Grow Lights Are Better?
The question of LED vs HPS and which is “better” has been around since the LED grow light hit the market.
High-Pressure Sodium lights have often been seen as the best grow light available. HPS grow lights produce a massive amount of light, which is especially good for flowering. However, they also produce a great deal of heat.
Pros Of HPS
- HPS lights are more standardized among manufacturers, making it a bit easier to comparison shop.
- HPS bulbs provide an immense amount of raw light intensity so they can produce great yields, particularly when working with very large plants.
Cons Of HPS
- HPS lights use much more electricity to generate light, meaning they are much less efficient.
- They also generate a lot of heat. Which often requires additional ventilation equipment. If not dealt with accordingly, the added heat can make growing very difficult.
- HPS grow bulbs diminish in intensity significantly over time and must be replaced regularly every 12-18 months. Resulting in additional operating costs.
LED Grow Lights
LED grow lights are a truly remarkable feat of technology. They are by far the most efficient lighting type available. LED lights combine precise spectral outputs, advanced optics, and thermal management engineering to convert nearly 100% of consumed power into growth-targeted light energy. This is how LED grow lights are able to produce great yields while consuming far less energy. LED light fixtures also require very little maintenance aside from occasional cleaning. Typically, growers use just one LED grow light system from start to finish. As most LED’s have spectrums optimized for the full growth cycle. There are also LED grow lights available that can be adjusted for the different phases of growth.
Pros Of LED Grow Lights
- Today’s best LED grow lights can rival the production of HPS lights that use nearly twice the wattage, which adds up to great savings on the power bill.
- LED grow lights run much cooler than HPS resulting in an obvious set of benefits for the indoor grower.
- LED grow light units typically come as all-in-one fixtures, which are easier to work within tight spaces. They can also be placed closer to plants in confined areas with very little risk of heat damage.
Cons Of LED Grow Lights
- LED Grow lights do have a higher upfront cost but have been shown to save in the long run thanks to a lower cost of operation.
- Lights are not as standardized across manufacturers quite yet, making comparison-shopping more difficult. Still, the LED grow light industry has come a long way and design practices are becoming more consistent.
- LED Grow lights produce very little heat, which for many is an advantage. However, those growing with LED’s in colder indoor areas may need to supplement the extra heat an HID light such as an HPS or MH would produce.
Both LED grow lights and HPS grow lights are equally capable of producing great yields, and both have advantages over the other. If initial cost is not an issue, the answer to which one is better really comes down to other main factors contributing to your grow such as the growing method you plan to practice as well as the ambient conditions and size of the growing area.