We are living at a time when urban life is the trend. People are moving from the less populated rural areas to the densely populated towns and cities. To the plant-loving individuals, living in an urban setting does not help.
Despite all these challenges, many people have discovered new methods to grow their favorite plants. Even if it means turning the interior of the houses into a garden. From the basic biology we learned in childhood, we know that a plant requires three components to grow. These components are oxygen, nutrients, and light.
Plants use light to synthesize their food in a process referred to as photosynthesis. In the open, the sun provides this light. Grow lights are used as an alternative to the sun. They are also used to supplement natural light. Before getting into the different kinds of grow lights, there is a need to grasp the basic principles of lighting.
The visible white light is composed of different wavelengths which can be measured. Not every wavelength is suitable for plants. Plants capture and utilize light band with a spectrum ranging between 400 and 700 nanometers.
This band is known as the photosynthetically active radiation (PAR). Even within the photosynthetically active radiation spectrum, different wavelengths are needed at various stages of plant growth.
The blue light spectrum (440-490 nm) supports vegetative growth while light in the red/orange range (580-700 nm) is ideal for flowering and fruit development.
The various kinds of grow lights generate light of different strengths. However, the intensity must be sufficient enough to support plant growth.
The grow lights should be positioned well. Positioning the lights further away from the plants will result in less light energy reaching the plants.
Photoperiod refers to the amount of light in 24 hours. It determines when the plants will flower or fruit. Grow lights used for indoor gardening ought to be synchronized with the natural seasons. To achieve such a photoperiod, the grow lights are connected and controlled by timers and alarms.
Sun System Grow Lights: Overview
The Sun System Company produces an array of the latest state of the art grow light technologies. The company is considered one of the best and a powerhouse when it comes to the production of grow lights.
Sun System grow lights are manufactured using top quality components. The grow lights are designed in such a way that ensure maximum efficiency and high yields.
Most importantly, Sun System provides grow lights to growers of all scales. Whether one owns a miniature indoor garden or a huge grow rooms, there is always a grow light designed for them. As already mentioned, Sun System manufactures different kinds of grow lights. These lights include:
- LEC grow lights
- Fluorescent grow lights
- Metal halide and high-pressure sodium lamps
LEC Grow Lights
Sun Systems has developed the light-emitting ceramics (LEC) or ceramic metal halides to replace the traditional metal halides and high-pressure sodium lamps. The LEC grow light is next-generation technology. These lights not only have a wide spectral range but also emits very little heat.
As a result, unlike the traditional high-intensity discharge lighting systems, LEC grow lights can be used safely in the smallest spaces. There is no need to install ventilation systems in such confined spaces. The lights can be placed in close proximity to the plant’s canopy without subjecting the plant to desiccation.
The extremely low heat energy generation by LEC grow lights guarantee less power consumption and increased longevity. Their full spectral range ensures optimal plant growth.
Only one lamp is required to achieve a full-cycle growth. The LEC grow lights can also be used to supplement traditional high-intensity lights. They broaden the spectral range, ensuring that the light requirements for the later stages of plant growth and flowering are met.
Fluorescent Grow Lights
Sun System fluorescent grow lights, like all other Sun System grow lights, are of exceptionally high and impressive quality. These lights are suitable for those growers with tight spaces. Fluorescent lights are the best for seed propagation. The fluorescent light emits light of lower intensity.
Germinating seeds or rooting clones require light of slightly lesser intensity compared to plants at the vegetative or flowering stages. For this reason, fluorescent grow lights are routinely used as supplemental side lighting. This does not imply that they cannot be used as stand-alone lighting.
Like their LEC counterparts, fluorescent grow lights emits minimal amounts of heat energy. As a result, they can be placed close to the plant without any harmful effects to the plants’ foliage. The less heat generation guarantees longevity, power saving, and cost-effectiveness in the long run.
Metal Halide and High-Pressure Sodium Lamps
The Sun System metal halide and high-pressure sodium lamps represent a category of tried and tested grow lights. These high-intensity discharge grow lights are a darling to many growers.
Their immense power and low-cost guarantee optimum yields. As a result, metal halide and high-pressure sodium lamps are the recommended choices for large scale grow room. They are the best option for those growers with lots of plants and seeking maximum yields.
Sun System’s high-intensity discharge grow lights have a unique feature that sets it apart from the rest. They have an integrated Galaxy electronic ballast. This amazing feature enables the synchronous operation of both the metal halide and high-pressure sodium lamps.
The two lights are suited for different stages of plant growth. The metal halide lights emit light within the blue spectral range. Such light is suitable for the vegetative stage. The high-pressure sodium light emits red/orange light which supports flowering.
Top-Rated Sun System Grow Lights
Sun System HPS 150W Fixture with Ultra Sun Lamp
The HPS 150W Fixture is a compact grow light that is easy to use. It is ideal for any grower irrespective of the garden scale. Its high-intensity discharge lamps emit an incredible 16,000 lumens.
It generates colors within the spectral range that are ideal for flowering and fruiting. The color and power output from these lamps are sufficient to support the growth of plants such as flowers, herbs, and vegetables all year round.
The Sun System HPS 150W Fixture with Ultra Sun Lamp possesses a design unrivaled by any other type of high-intensity discharge lights. It is explicitly designed to meets the requirements of most horticultural farms and gardens. The lamps utilize and advance version of the high-pressure sodium technologies.
Each Ultra Sun High-Pressure Sodium Bulb is well insulated with a ceramic plate. It also possesses an armature made of stainless steel and a next-generation proprietary starter. These excellent features make the lamp resistant to damage from any harmonic distortion or acoustic resonance emanating from the high-frequency ballasts.
The Ultra Sun HPS lamps boast of a temperature rating of 2000⁰K. Such intensity is required by plants at either the fruiting or flowering stages. Furthermore, mature crops thrive well at such a temperature rating. The lamp’s robust built guarantees durability. Its high quality and stability make it reliable and cost-effective in the long run.
Other components and details that come together with Sun System HPS 150W Fixture with Ultra Sun Lamp include a 7-feet grounded 120V power, backlit on/off, durable white powder-coated, a vented housing that helps to dissipate heat, and a 150-watt HPS bulb.
This grow light has a 1-year warranty for the bulb and two years for the HPS 150W Fixture.
- Highly efficient. HPS grow lights generate sufficiently high amounts of suitable light energy for a certain amount of electricity.
- Very powerful. These grow lights have an impressive output of 16,000 lumens. Such high power output guarantees maximum yields.
- Deeper light penetration. This a feature that confers a great advantage to high-intensity discharge grow light. Its light can penetrate even the thickest canopies.
- Adaptability to garden size. These grow lights can be used in gardens of any size. It can be scaled up and down to match the number of plants in the garden
- Highly reliable and durable. These grow lights have been tried and tested. They have consistently performed well over many years.
- Available and affordable. The HPS grow lights can easily be acquired at pocket-friendly costs.
- Generate a lot of heat. The high amount of heat energy emitted by HPS lights is a significant disadvantage. It may be a hindrance when one needs to utilize them in extremely small confinement.
- Requires a ventilation system. The HPS grow lights emit lots of heat. As a result, they need cooling or an exhaust system to remove the excessive heat, which may damage the crops.
- Need a ballast. Each HPS bulb demands a well-regulated energy input. The electricity is regulated using a ballast that tends to consume extra amounts of energy.
- High energy requirement. HPS bulbs require a power of between 100 to 150 Watts which is enough to alter one’s electricity bills significantly.
Sun System 250/400W Digital Grow System
The Sun System 250/400W digital grow system uses a metal halide/high-pressure sodium technology. It is an advanced model of the previous version of high-intensity discharge lights.
It runs on both 250 and 400 Watt lamps. Its inbuilt state of the art Galaxy electronic ballast operates at 120 0r 240 volts. The ballast makes the operation of both the high-pressure sodium lamp and metal halide lamp possible.
The digital grow system is easy to assemble and operate. It is made up of very light material. It weighs only 15 lbs and therefore is unrivaled by any other type of grow light. The inner surfaces are coated with a highly reflective aluminum insert.
Its housing has a glamorous design coated with stainless steel which not only makes it attractive but also durable. As these types of lights tend to generate a significant amount of heat, they can be
This grow light has a coverage area of 4’x4′ for plants at the vegetative stage and 3’x3′ for flowering crops. The lights are power efficient and cost-effective. The digital grow light comes with a warranty of 2 years.
Being a metal halide/high-pressure sodium lamp, the digital grow system shares the same pros and cons as the Sun System HPS 150W Fixture with Ultra Sun Lamp.
- Generates light at a higher intensity
- Highly efficient
- Relatively cheap
- It’s robust and highly durable
- Generates lots of heat that may damage the plants
- Requires a cooling/ventilation system
Sun System / Sunlight Supply Trifecta
The Sun System Trifecta is a collection of all the necessary tools to kick start one’s indoor gardening. These components include a Sun System magnetic ballast, an Ultra Sun 1000 HPS lamp, and an Econo Wing Reflector.
Sun System Trifecta utilizes a Hard Core 1000 Watt magnetic ballast uniquely designed by Sun System. The Hard Core ballast has enhanced cooling features when compared to other ballasts. The low heat generation, coupled with a compact design prolongs Trifecta’s lifespan.
The Hard Core ballast offers an option to select either a metal halide or HPS lamps. Its dual power input allows one to utilize either 120 or 240 volts. Unlike other ballasts, the Hard Core resting pads are made of rubber which significantly reduces vibration and noise, which might damage it.
The Trifecta’s Econo Wing Reflector is built using lightweight material; a feature that makes its handling and transportation easy. It has rounded corners for optimum power output and even distribution. Setting up the reflector is simple has it is fully assembled before it hits the shops’ shelves.
The Econo Wing Reflector is relatively small. Its dimension of 21’ long x 15’ wide x 4.5’ height makes it suitable in tents and small rooms.
The Trifecta grow light uses an Ultra Sun 1000 HPS lamp. The bulb is highly efficient and durable. Its high power output makes it ideal for most horticultural ventures.
The lamp’s Kelvin temperature rating of 2,000K and about 140,000 lumens of mainly red/orange light ensures the healthy growth of flowering plants.
With these features, every grower is assured of excellent yields.
- High power output
- Suitable for both the vegetative stage and the flowering/fruiting stage
- Convenient-everything needed to set up the grow light comes pre-packed in a single box
- Suitable for both small spaces and larger ones
- Its ballast generates less noise/vibration
- Relatively expensive compared to other grow lights
- Generates heat energy which may damage crops
Sun System Pro Sun 630 Watt LEC Grow Light Fixture with Dual Lamps
The Sun System Pro Sun 630W LEC Grow Light utilizes the light-emitting ceramic technology. It represents one of Sun System’s most significant breakthroughs. The Pro Sun 630W grow light is an assembly of several next-generation technologies.
The Pro Sun 630W functions with two extra-long lasting Philips lamps. Each of the 315-watt lamps offers different functionality. The bulbs produce light of different spectral ranges targeting different stages of a plant cycle. The 3100K color temperature lamp generates light within the red/orange wavelength, which is ideal for flowering.
The 4200⁰K lamp produces blue light which is suitable for vegetative growth. As a result, the Pro Sun 630 Watt grow light is ideal for full-cycle plant growth.
Apart from an increased spectral range, the Pro Sun 630W grow light has a glamorous and efficient design. Its 98% reflective aluminum insert guarantees optimum light output and uniform distribution. The other Pro Sun 630W grow light specs include:
- Very high photosynthetic photon flux of 1.95 per second light source.
- Durable lamps estimated to be a 20,000-hour lamp.
- Very high lumen maintenance estimated to be 90% at 8000 hr.
- Unique design to reduce radiant heat from the arc tube.
- True full light spectrum. The Pro Sun 630W grow light produces blue and red light. The light within this spectral range is required for a plant to grow from scratch to the fruiting stage. Besides, the high photosynthetic photon flux encourages vigorous plant growth which is necessary for high yields.
- Highly durable Philips lamps. The Pro Sun 630W lamps are intrinsically resilient. These lights have a lifespan twice that of most metal halide or high-pressure sodium lamps. Furthermore, the bulbs have a unique design that increases their spectral range and lumens.
- Less heating. LEC grow lights generate and emit less heat energy compared to their HSP counterparts. Its insulations further lower its energy output. The plant can be grown as close to the lamps with the risk of burning the twigs.
- More efficient. The Pro Sun 630W grow light generates little heat energy. It consumes less power compared to other grow lights. The light also covers a larger grow space, and there is no need for extra expenditures on cooling systems and ventilation.
- Specific ballasts. LEC grow lights utilize a distinct magnetic ballast. The ballast can only be fitted in three orientations: down, horizontal, or straight up.
- Relatively expensive. The light-emitting ceramic technology is relatively new. As a result, its products are still pricey.
- Harmful ultraviolet radiation. It is thought that the UV lights generated by LEC grow lights could pose harm to people. As a result, growers should ideally wear protective clothing such as sunglasses and long-sleeved shirts when working for long under LEC lighting.
Sun System Flower Power 315 Watt LEC Fixture, 120/240 Volt
The Flower Power 315W is a compact grow light fixture built by Sun System. It is designed using the latest light-emitting ceramic technology. Its compact design makes an ideal grow light for confined spaces. It also works perfectly in large horticultural tents, halls, and greenhouses.
Sun System Flower Power 315 Watt LEC Fixture possesses a dual power input. The grower has the option to utilize either 120 volts or 240 volts. The 120-volt power cord comes with the fixture while the 240 volts one is bought separately.
The light’s insert is built using textured aluminum which gives it an impressive 95% reflective power. The high reflective capacity is one of the features responsible for the excellent out and uniform light distribution.
Like the Pro Sun 630W, the Flower Power 315W has two different lamp sets. A 3,100⁰K color temperature which has a very high photosynthetic photon flux density (PPFD) of 1.82 per second light source. The other is a 4,200⁰K color temperature with a 1.70 PPFD per second light source. The two lamps increase the grow light’s spectral range. As a result, the Flower Power 315W can support full cycle plant growth.
The lamps generate relatively less amount of heat energy. This feature makes it suitable for small spaces as the light can be placed close to the plants. It also increases the lamp’s lifespan. The Flower Power 315W grow light can go for several years without the need for replacement. It has similar advantages and disadvantages to Pro Sun 630W.
- Lasts longer
- Dissipates less heat
- Supports plants of all stages
- May generate harmful UV radiation
- More pricey compared to other types of grow lights
- Requires a magnetic ballast
Sun System SunLight 125 Watt Fluorescent Grow Light
The Sun System SunLight 125 watt fluorescent grow lamp is a relatively cheap yet highly efficient grow light. The low-intensity light it generates perfectly suits plants at the early stages.
It serves well as s supplemental light source. The fluorescent bulbs generate little heat. Hence, this grow light is ideal for those growers with limited space.
The SunLight 125W is designed well. It utilizes a top quality Feliz fluorescent lamp with an impressive 6,500⁰K color temperature and a rating of 125 watts. Its wing reflector is coated with a bright white powder, thereby increasing its reflective power and durability.
Its body is made of sturdy steel. The lamp comes with an 8 ft. 120-volt power cord with a mogul base power socket.
- The SunLight 125W emits light that covers a large area. It has a coverage area of 2’x2’ both for the vegetative stage and flowering stages.
- Relatively cheaper compared to other types of grow lights such as LEC based lamps.
- Longer lifespan than other grow lamps.
- SunLight 125W generates the least amount of heat. Thus, it can be placed as near to the plants as possible.
- Highly efficient and cost-effective
- It is not suitable for plants at the vegetative or flowering stages. The SunLight 125W produces mainly white light of low intensity which is suitable only for plants in their early stages.
The technologies utilized by Sun System to create these state of the art grow lights include light-emitting ceramics, metal halide, and high-pressure sodium-based lamps. Sun Systems‘ grow lights are designed in such a way that they meet the needs of every farmer.
Grow lights suit not only those practice large scale horticulture but also those small scale farmers with limited spaces.
Furthermore, most of these grow lights are long-lasting, efficient, consumes less energy. Sun System grow lights guarantee high yields. In the long run, these lights provide value for capital spent in acquiring them.