What is HPS, High Pressure Sodium, Lighting
When it comes to lighting indoor cannabis grows, HPS lighting has been one of the most-used types of lighting since it began.
However, over the last few years LED and LEC lighting have been producing much better results per watt and higher quality cannabis. HPS lighting, due to its low price, is the basic light if you’re a beginner planning on starting out.
HPS Indoor Grow Light Benefits
- When it comes to HPS lighting systems, they can produce 0.8 – 0.8 gram per watt.
- Lower cost, initially. However, keep in mind that LED and LEC lights can help you to save quite a bit on electric bills, making up for it. HPS systems are more affordable initially.
- These types of lights used to be the only type of light available for growing cannabis, so there is an incredible amount of information online regarding how to use them.
- They’re great for growing cannabis although they tend to produce a lot of heat compared to other types. However, this can actually be handy in areas where the winters are incredibly cold, helping you to keep your grow room warm.
How to Choose a Good HPS Lighting System
In order to choose the right HPS system, you’ll need to keep in mind a couple of factors:
- Your available space
- The amount of flowers you want to harvest.
Once you have this information, you’ll need to see how much each type of HPS light can produce and the amount of space it can cover – once you do that, you’ll see that:
- 80 x 80 cm with a 250w HPS: approx. yield of up to 220-225 grams.
- 100 x 100 cm with a 400w HPS: approx. yield of up to 320-360 grams.
- 120 x 120 cm with a 600w HPS: approx. yield of up to 480-540 grams.
- 150 x 150 cm with a 1000w HPS: approx. yield of up to 800-900 grams.
- 200 x 200 cm with a 1000w HPS – DE – 400v: approx. yield of up to 1000-1100 grams.
If you have a look through our catalogue, you’ll find everything needed for setting up your own high quality HPS lighting system at amazing prices.
What HPS Grow Light Should you Pick?
HPS lights are used when it comes to flowering (or blooming) cannabis plants.
Some growers prefer to use a MH, metal halide, grow light during the veg period and then changing to a HPS for the bloom period, however others prefer to save money and use one mixed bulb.
We recommend using a less powerful grow light during the growth period such as a 250w MH, and then a more potent bulb such as a 400w HPS, or a 400w MH growth light and a 600w HPS bloom light.
- This allows you to save electricity during the growth period and increase your yield.
- You’ll need two ballasts and two grow lights, although they’ll both last for much longer.
HPS Grow Lights for the Flowering Period
Our catalogue contains the following HPS Flowering models:
- Pure Light HPS Bloom Grow Light: in 400w and 600w. This is their cheapest option with a decent price/quality ratio.
- Sylvania SHP-TS Grow Light: in 400w and 600w with a special Sylvania Wound antenna; secure start-up and longer lifespan.
- Philips Master SON T-Pia Plus 600w Grow Light: high end HPS light, efficient and lead-free. Has PIA technology (Philips Integrated Antenna), which increases the bulb’s lifespan.
Mixed HPS Grow Lights
If you’re looking for a mixed grow light to use during the growth and bloom stages, check out these options:
- Pure Light Grow Bloom Max HPS Grow Light: this is one of the most affordable models and is available in 250w, 400w and 600w.
- Sylvania Grolux Grow Light: available in 400w and 600w, this professional grow light is great in as far as price/quality.
- Master SON-T Pia Green Power Philips Grow Light: available in 400w and 600w. This light has Philips Integrated Antenna PIA technology which improves light flow and increases lifespan.
- Philips SON – T 1000w E40 Grow Light: this high end Philips bulb can be used with 1000w HPS ballasts.
We also have double ended 750w and 1000w HPS grow lights. These bulbs provide higher quality results because:
- Their design ensures no shadowing over plants.
- Optimized spectrum.
- They emit up to 35% more energy than standard HPS grow lights.
If you’re still curious, these are a couple of options that indoor growers tend to favour:
Why do I need a Ballast for my HPS Grow Light?
Ballasts allow you to turn your lights on, giving them a stable flow of electricity. You can’t turn your HPS light on without using a ballast.
HPS light bulbs need to be used with a ballast that’s compatible with HPS/MH technology and it needs to be the same wattage.
Ballasts for HPS grow lights are also compatible with metal halide grow lights.
There are two types of ballast; magnetic/analogue or electronic/digital models.
- Magnetic or analogue ballasts were the first to ever be used in indoor growing.
- They’re more noisy, they produce more heat and they’re less safe than electronic ballasts.
- They’re quiet
- They use less electricity
- They’re safer and have heat protection against short-circuits and other issues.
- They have a lamp overheating detection system which extends the lifespan of your lights.
- It has a dimmer that allows you to reduce the strength of your bulbs during the growth period, increasing strength up to 10% extra during the flowering peiord.
- They let off less heat than magnetic ballasts and they run on an electric circuit and a microprocessor.
- They produce less blinking in your lights, which means your plants receive more PAR constantly (photosynthetic active radiation).
Why Should You Get an Electronic Ballast?
Cannabis plants have varying needs when it comes to light during the growth and flowering stages. During the growth stage, cannabis plants need around 15 000 to 30 000 lumens, whereas during the flowering stage they need double that amount.
An electronic ballast allows growers to reduce the power coming from their lights during the growth stage when they don’t need much light, saving electricity in the process.
With a magnetic ballast all you can do is increase the power and waste electricity or end up buying a weaker system specifically for the growth period.
What HPS Ballast Should you Choose?
We have various options available:
Magnetic or analogue ballasts
Our cheapest magnetic ballast is the ETI Ballast which is available in 400w and 600w.
If you’re looking for a little extra security, we also have the Pure Light V2 Ballast, which comes with an installed fuse to avoid any issues and increase the lifespan if your bulbs; available in 400w and 600w.
Electronic or digital ballasts
Within our electronic ballast section, the cheapest is the Pure Light Lazerlight 600w Ballast, a top-gen device that allows you to adjust the wattage from 250 – 400 – 600w and has a Super Lumen function.
We also have the Bolt Ballast which comes with a dimmer and 50, 65%, 600w and Super Lumen settings.
If you’re looking for a higher end model, we recommend the Lumatek ballast which is available in:
- 250w plus Super Lumen, adjustable to 175 and 150w.
- 400w plus Super Lumen, adjustable to 300 and 250w.
- 600w plus Super Lumen, adjustable to 450 and 400w.
- 1000w plus Super Lumen, adjustable to 600w and 750w.
In order to run a HPS Double Ended grow light, you can use one of the following options;
- Hellion UHF 600 750w v400 Ballast by Adjust A Wing for using with 750w DE grow lights. This device comes with a dimmer that can adjust it to 450 – 600 – 750w. With the Hellion Support Reflector you can set up the Hellion UHF 600 – 750w (400v) with an Adjust-a-Wing reflector which can minimize electromagnetic interference.
What HPS Reflector to Choose
Keeping in mind that HPS lights produce light in all directions, you’re going to need a reflector to direct the light back towards your plants.
Here you can find a wide range of reflectors that fit the needs of all types of growers.
- If you’re having temperature issues, we recommend using a closed reflector such as a Cooltube, with which you can reduce the temperature in your grow tent.
- If you’re looking to harvest larger yields from your HPS lights we recommend using an open reflector.
- If you’re looking for a more affordable reflector, we recommend using the Open Hammertone reflector, which is the cheapest option when it comes to HPS grow lights and also comes in a double ended version called the ECO Double Ended Reflector, which can also be used with LEC lighting.
Double-parabolic reflectors allow you to make adjustments so that you can light your grow area in the most efficient way possible.
The base model is the Pear Pro XL, which is the cheapest option for 250w, 400w and 600w grow lights.
The German manufacturer Prima Klima has a range called the Azerwing. They have affordable models such as the Anodized Medium Azerwing reflector which reflects up to 86% light. Their highest end model is the Azerwing Vega for one grow light and the Azerwing Grande for two grow lights, both of which reflect up to 95%.
Plus, Adjust a Wing also created the double-parabolic reflector. You can choose between their basic, more affordable model, the Adjust a Wing Enforcer which reflects up to 85% or their high end model called the Medium Professional, which can reflect up to 97% of light. Adjust a Wing reflectors alongside a Hellion socket allow you to use them with double ended 750w and 1000w grow lights.
How to Handle Lots of HPS Grow Lights
600w HPS Lighting Systems can be administered using a timing box, which come in 4, 6, 8, 12, 24, 48, 80 and 100 – system set-ups.
HPS Lighting system 750w and 1000w ballasts with v400 double ended technology allow you to use external controllers that are capable of handling between 80 and 100 ballasts for large grows.
Available HPS Grow Light Kits
These kits come with the reflector and ballast included so that you can be guaranteed decent results, minimizing electromagnetic interference.
All of these systems come with high frequency electronic ballasts that can be connected to an external controller.
- Gravita Pro 6/750w DE – Flex – E Series: this Dutch manufacturer isa leader in making indoor grow lights. They offer professional quality bulbs for using in tents from 120 x 120 to 150 x 150 cm. They can also be adjusted from 400, 500, 600, 750 and 825w. This is the only 750w Super Lumen kit that allows you to increase power by 10% during the flowering period.
- Gavita Pro DE 1000w kit: this is a high end kit that’s ideal for covering up to 200x200cm. It also has a dimmer that can be adjusted to 600, 750, 825, 1000 and 1150w.
- Hellion 750w DE Kit: This hellion kit contains a medium professional Adjust a Wings kit that produce sup to 97% reflection and comes with a spreader. It can be adjusted to 450, 600, 750w.
- 1000w DE Proton Kit: this kit has a reflector made out of High Grade 95% reflective Vega aluminium with adjustable wings so that you can make the most of your light, and a ballast tat can be adjusted to 600, 750, 1000w and Super Lumen (10% more).
- Apolo 1000w Lighting Kit: this kit comes with a Green Power Plus 100w HPS DE bulb and an adjustable ballast that can go to 660, 750, 825, 1000 and 1150w (super lumen).
What Distance Should my HPS grow Light Be at?
The temperature at the tips of your plants during the flowering period should never go over 26°C, and temperatures over 28°C in buds make trichomes lose out on certain terpenes and cannabinoids.
Your priority should always be to maintain a nice, balanced temperature in your grow room. Here’s a guide for the recommended grow light heights when using different HPS systems:
- 250w HPS – recommended distance: 25 – 30 cm
- 400w HPS – recommended distance: 30 – 40 cm
- 600w HPS – recommended distance: 40 – 50 cm
- 750w HPS – recommended distance: 100 cm
- 1000w HPS – recommended distance: 80 – 100 cm
- 1000w HPS DE – recommended distance: 130 cm