Dec 022012
 December 2, 2012

There are several LED companies selling various LED grow lights. Although there are similarities between the various brands of LED grow lights, there are notable differences in their design, function and price. In this review we will cover three reputable companies to help LED newbies and seasoned LED growers compare various lights and choose what works best for their given setup and budget. We compare Advanced LED, Dorm Grow LED and Hydrogrow LED. We grade each of these companies based on the following three variables: | Design | Price | Customer Service

400 Watt Diamond Series by Advanced LED

400 Watt Diamond Series by Advanced LED

Advanced LED – Diamond Series (3W)

| Design : B + | Price : B | Customer Service: A

Advanced LED is one of the best known and most advertised LED companies. They market very heavily on the Google Ad network. Their line of Diamond Series grow lights have plastic covers called optical lenses on each diode which focus the light to have a narrower range for added penetration. These lights come with a switch which turns some diodes on and off for growth/flower. Although it is a nice feature to have the growth/flower switch, the big downside is that half of the diodes are always off while operating the light so less intensity to the grow area. The DS 400 has 200x3Watt diodes and a hefty price tag of $995. They have great customer service and someone will either answer your call or return a message fairly quickly.

G8 600 LED Grow Light by Dorm Grow

G8 600 LED Grow Light by Dorm Grow

Dorm Grow LED – G8LED (3W)

| Design : A | Price : A + | Customer Service: A

Dorm Grow LED is known for their partnership with G8LED and their line of well priced grow lights with the Optimal 8-band color ratio. G8LED is one of the few designs that have both ultraviolet and infrared diodes added in their color ratio. These added wavelengths give growers the edge to grow their best crop. Their LED grow lights have solid construction and are built to last. Dorm Grow LED has very competitive pricing compared to the rest of the market. The G8-600 has 200x3Watt diodes and a discounted price of $899. Their website offers further discounts when you purchase in quantity. They have great customer service and will answer all customer questions.

Penetrator 189X LED Grow Light by Hydrogrow

Penetrator 189X LED Grow Light by Hydrogrow

Hydrogrow LED – Penetrator X-Pro Series (3W)

|Design : A | Price : B – | Customer Service: B +

The Penetrator X Series by Hydrogrow LED is one of the original mass market LED grow lights that has built a strong brand name through time. Hydrogrow is continuously developing and improving the design of their line of LED grow lights. They also have good video tutorials on the internet which showcase their light and give general information about growing with LEDs. The design has circle clusters, each with 21 diodes in them. The Pentrator 189X-Pro has 189x3Watt diodes and the highest price tag of $1299. They have good customer service although sometimes it takes a bit of time to get a response back.

SuperGrowLED.com have well over a decades experience producing LED grow lights. Their newest model is the Spectrum King™ (SK450) which is truly full spectrum, no bands of light with gaps, just pure growing light right through the visible spectrum from 420 nm to 750nm. The lights use 3W LEDs x 150 = 450 Watt full capacity driven at 55.5% = 250W true power or draw per unit. They have 6th generation Spectrum II™ LEDs using 100 X ‘white LEDs’ which are a mix of the primary colors red, green and blue (RGB) which supply you with high end color rendering and that full spectrum which covers the supplemental chlorophyll A+B absorption peaks. led light cannabis marijuanaThese 100 X ‘white’ LEDs are expensive to produce and the absolute best on the market. The remaining 50 X LEDs are a mixture of ‘reds’ which effectively turbo charge the flowering so your yields are as big as possible with the far-red output helping strict photoperiod control. The guys at Super Grow LED built their lights with perfect fan-less thermal management and rugged industrial construction including an anodized aluminium chassis. Two of these bad boys at a total draw of 500W produce 25% more yield than a 1000W HID, at half the electricity cost and near zero heat production. Super Grow LED also stand behind their product with an amazing 5 year warranty. The serious growers know the extra quality produces a yield beyond 1 gram per Watt and they are a fixture in some of the largest medicinal grow rooms on the planet.

About Jay Smoker

I have been smoking marijuana for almost twenty years and I have no plans to stop anytime soon. My life was turned upside down in 2009 after getting arrested and tossed in jail for being in the wrong state with legal medical marijuana. I got fed up, and I now devote all my time to ending this insanity.I am responsible for the technical side of this project, but try to chip in when I can, either with syndicated articles or original content.Follow me on Facebook and Twitter.Feel free to email. any questions or concerns. Peace!
  • alex

    Well , you could not ingore LED Grow Lights Manufacturer,LED Grow Lights Wholesale: http://growlightwholesale.com

  • Silverado

    Till they get to a competitive price point that allows them to compete directly with the current technology, they’ll continue to have difficulty competing & selling many of these lights. I just happened to be looking through the Hydroponic section of Ebay the other night and noticed all these LED grow lights listed and their “uptown” prices. One in particular was around $1600 and I don’t know but whoever wrote these item descriptions….well, it’s no wonder they don’t sell many of them.

    Personally, for $1600 I can go buy 3, maybe 4 of the 1000 watt light setups that probably includes the latest digital ballasts and with what I could (theoretically 1 pound per light is relatively easy) harvest with 3 lights, who cares what the power bill might be?? They just don’t pencil out for the average grower.

    Of course, maybe I’m wrong. Maybe you can harvest 3+ pounds from just one of these expensive lights hanging overhead. Knowing lumens, footprints, reflectivity and a bunch more stuff, tells me that’s probably not possible using a single LED light and I don’t care what it costs. Whereas in real life and with a space lit by 3 digital ballasted 1000 watt grow lights with AgroSun Gold bulbs (or something comparable) in a properly setup room, there’s no doubt in my mind that 3+ pounds is not only probable, it can be repeated time after time. The only thing that LED light is going to do guaranteed is that it’s going to cost a small fortune. Until then I’ll stick with what’s working and with technology I can afford. Sorry….

    • DarkerMatter

      We need to know how much a Kilowatt hour of electricity costs in your area. Then we need to compare yield per kilowatt hour. Cooling consumption needs to be factored in, and the longevity of the light source. (Use clones)

      I have yet to see a peer reviewed study that shows the relative yield of both systems. I’m not passing judgment, but it seems to me if the LED system was the better, that study would be all over the place.

      The cheapest and best light is the sun.

      Grown free, as free as the wind blows, as free as the grass grows, born free to follow your heart…

      • observer1959

        I just saw a side by side comparison HID vs LED review on another site. There were 18 pictures of the clones and each step of the was the LED plant kept up with the HID.
        Try living in WA state and see how much sun there is. Indoor growing all the way if you want year around product

    • feroledeurope

      SIlverado, there are plus points for LEDs & energy saving is just one of them. Most people buy them because they’re safer .. no heat signature, no increase in power consumption (beyond normal household use) means there’s less means of the boys in blue to suspect somethings going on.

      And quite frankly its just easier to grow with LEDs, not having to deal with heat extraction is a big bonus .. and I say this after 14 yrs growing HPS in all kinds of set ups. No of course you cant get 3 pounds off 1 LED (at least not one I’ve seen), but you can get 1lb easy from a 1500$ light that’s guarranteed to keeping going for 6 years. Do that simple piece of math and you’ll see that the light pays for itself ,, while you enjoy a safer,easier grow :)

      But who says you have to use LEDs anyway? Its not an either/or you know ,.,

      • http://twitter.com/FarmersNotFelon Farmers Not Felons

        ” LEDs & energy saving is just one of them.” Watts are watts friend. You cant get better yield with less lumens/watts.

  • SYSTECH

    Thanks for posting such a nice one, It is informative and very useful for me

    • http://twitter.com/FarmersNotFelon Farmers Not Felons

      Really? How? They didnt talk about the performance of the product at all, which is the most important part.

  • Grayhane

    Design price and customer service are not nearly as important to me as how the thing grows plants. Yeild would be more interesting to me.

  • Andy Scott

    Yes proper wavelength gives the plants enough room for growth. Plant bloom at a particular wavelength and color. So best of luck growing!

    http://www.advancednutrients.com/hydroponics/articles/hydroponics-gardening/how-to-get-the-most-benefit-from-your-led-grow-lights.php

  • medicaluser420

    these are outdated tests why would you not test 5 watt led lights thats the newest tech 5w and 3w combinations?

    • Rancid-P

      3watts gives me more than enough canopy penetration. the 5watt lights can penetrate more but it becomes unnecessary with my growing style – im not growing 8 foot plants indoors. the drawback to the 5 watt chips are that they give off more heat, require bigger heat sinks which makes the led very heavy and the 5w lights are way more expensive. it doesn’t make sense to me to pay the premium to get something that i dont need and ends up giving off more heat.

  • Sen D’ cruz

    Nice post.

  • Mason

    I personally use the G8LED’s from dorm grow. Got one the 600 Watt like the one in this review with two 90 watt all red LEDs to boost flowering. This is in a 4×4 tent. I’ve used a 1000 watt HPS before and I am yielding about the same amount. Way less power usage as well, about a 3rd of what the 1000 Watt was using. I also got a 240 watt and 2 other 450 watts. You need to keep in mind that pretty much no LED company actually runs their LED’s at max power so for example the 600 Watt uses about 420 watts. The 450 watt uses about 320 watts and the 240 watt uses about 180 watts. You don’t need to have very good cooling either. During flowering you should keep your grow space between 80 and 90 degrees with 85 being ideal so you don’t need a high powered duct fan to keep your tents cool. After switching to LED I don’t think I’ll be switching back any time soon. These LED lights also last a long time. They’re good for 50,000 hours that is over 5 years.

    • Johnny Ray

      I’m interested in starting an LED grow soon, but as an experienced HID grower I know what I’m talking about as far as growing goes. Your claimed optimum temp is about 10-20 degrees too high. For optimum plant growth, as well as pest and fungi/mold prevention, the optimum day cycle grow room temp is around 72 degrees. Night time temp is about 10 degrees lower. If the humidity is 50% or lower as well, no fungus or mold can grow fast enough in that temp to damage crops in the time it takes to harvest. Also, the main cause of indoor grow destruction- spider mites- cannot reproduce fast enough in a 72 degree space to cause damage during the time it takes to harvest. I would hate to see your garden if a spider mite got in at an 85 degree temp! It would be a webby mess in a matter of days. I’m looking forward to trying the LED’s so I don’t have to heat my garden with HID’s then use AC to cool it off, wasting tons of power in the process.

      • Jerry Price

        Johnny Ray -

        What you say is truth – I have grown for years and also found that the much advertised 87 degrees is not optimal unless you also provide CO2 supplementation and exchange the air regularly every 2 hours to prevent humidity build-up. Don’t fall for the hype about temperature of the lights – both LED and HID lights develop more heat than advertised. You will have to have an active heat venting system either way. There is also some controversy over high wattage vs low-wattage leds – I have found that there is more light supplied to the plant using multiple lights with 1 – 3 watt leds vs fewer lights with 6 – 9 watt leds. I also keep my growing solution oxygenated and at 10 degrees cooler than the room temperature – roots like that.
        Jeremiah

    • dudegrow

      if you ran the 1000 watt hid at 220 it draws the same as a regular 600 watt ballast which is what that LED is rated at so in the end they use the same amount of power if wired right..less amp draw with 220 as 110 and it makes HID light more efficient but most people run them at 110 on 30 amp breaker..

      • Facebook User

        That’s incorrect . Electricity is billed by wattage.
        1000 watt bulb uses 1000 watts no matter what voltage you run it at. Amperage has nothing to do with your electric consumption. Wats is watts no matter what voltage . I’m a seasoned electrical technician for 20 yrs.

  • Harsha Murthy

    Nice blog, Thanks for sharing useful information about LED lights

  • LED Grow Lights

    Modern LEDs produce light tailored to the
    intensity and color spectra plants need for healthy growth

  • Richard

    If you read carefully, the explanation of design gives an insight into how well the panel will perform for cannabis growing

  • systech

    Right,Good to see these useful info here..Thanks a lot for sharing them with us….

  • systech

    Right,Good to see these useful info here..Thanks a lot for sharing them with us

  • John

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    http://www.empowernetwork.com/almostasecret.php?id=tryonce
    You won’t regret it:)

  • Cheeky Monkey

    Searching for LED grow lights that are solar powered on the web throws up zero results. I couldn’t find anything other that one company in Florida called Solar Illuminations who seems to offer several different LED grow light systems. Their kits seem to be complete with everything you need, are plug & play and easy to install. Because they use solar power they do not require any connection to the grid. They even offer an optional time clock so you can set your on/off times as needed. These systems are perfect for places where there is no electricity such as a remote outbuilding, garage, cabin or shed. They are also great for this not wishing to generate higher utility bills with lighting connected to the grid. Then there are those who wish to be “green” all the way!

    http://www.solarilluminations.com/acatalog/Solar_Grow_Lights_and_LED_Aquaponic_Lamps.html

  • dark watch

    hi.i want to design and make led panel,but i have a question from u guys,what kind of exactly led i need? which model,brand of led i have to use ? sry 4 my bad writing :(

    • Daniel

      You can go to http://www.bsled.com to ask the Customer Service, then they will give you
      atisfactory answer.

  • leviajack

    LED lighting is the most popular popular this time. It consumes less power energy. ights4living ceiling lighting

  • JJ420

    Mason after reading your post about the G8LED grow light review I took the plunge and purchased the 450W grow light from Dorm Grow LED. Really, it was because you said your 600W lights yielded the same as your 1000W hps system from before. I was a bit more ambitious and tried to match my 1000w hps yield with just the G8-450 and two (instead of one as recommended) 90W Red UFO lights. Guess what? I don’t know if its because of the season or if I just have more growing experience now, but I matched my 1000w HPS yield with my G8-450 LED setup! Actually got slightly more. Thanks for the input bud – it was what I needed to see to get over the tipping point!

    • Buggsy

      I used Matrix SC900 from mvphydroponics.com and got amazing quality and yield.

  • Toby gone mad

    Advanced LED, Diamond Series, 400 Watt is $995 has 200 x 3
    Watt LEDs, so 600 Watts of gross potential but it will be run at less than
    that, they claim 368 Watts true power draw (running at 61% which is sensible) so
    at $995 it costs $2.70 per Watt. However it is not full spectrum
    having lots of gaps in the nanometres: 760nm,
    740nm, 720nm, 660nm, 630nm, 615nm-480nm, 460nm, 440nm, 415nm, 380nm –
    flowering will be tough. It also uses a fan, something to breakdown. The best
    don’t have fans as they use higher parts and better thermal engineering. Only 3
    year warranty.

    The G8-600 has 200 x 3 Watt LEDs
    and they claim 600 Watts. None of these lights are driven at full capacity and
    if they are they will burn LEDs like nobodies business. So what is the actual Watts
    output/draw? To work that out we need to know what the Volts (assuming 110
    Volts) and Amps are to find the Watts like in this Volts/Watts/Amps converter http://www.supercircuits.com/resources/tools/volts-watts-amps-converter
    – You could guess around 50% to 60%, so
    even at 60% that would also make this a true 360 Watt model which works out to
    be $1.94 per Watt. But once again so many holes in the spectrum “8 bands of the
    color spectrum” you are not going to get flowering out of this one. They
    claim it equates to a 1000 Watt HPS, nah, by my math at 360 Watt draw it is
    around 720 Watt HPS. Pretty weak 2 year Warranty and again includes fans which
    means thermal construction is not top rate.

    Pentrator 189X-Pro has 189x3Watt so
    a gross of 567 Watts but what is the true draw on this puppy? Well HydroGrow do
    actually show the full specs of the lights, 2.8Amps @ 110v diodes so if
    we use the cool Watts convertor http://www.supercircuits.com/resources/tools/volts-watts-amps-converter
    that equates to 308 Watts true draw which at $1,199 that is $3.89. Crucially
    this is only a 6 band light with BIG gaps in spectrum throughout 440nm, 470nm,
    525nm, 640nm, 660nm, 740nm and it has FOUR fans! Fail. Warranty is three years.

    After all my research I went and
    bought two of the Spectrum King (SK450)’s from these guys http://www.supergrowled.com They are
    150x3Watt LEDs, so a gross Wattage of 450 Watts but a true draw of 250 Watts at
    55% run (2.27 Amps on 110 Volts). The lights are actually full spectrum from
    720 to 750nm, with zero gaps in the wavelength, NO FAN because it looks like
    those guys got the thermal engineering right (the website says they have a
    thermal engineer in –house – cool) and you get a 5 year warranty. Cost per Watt
    is $3.54 when you buy two of them and that has produced a really dense set of
    buds for me over a 6 x 5 foot area. I am stoked as my electric bill is way
    down, heat problems have all but gone and I’m hoping they will live the 60,000
    (!!) hours they claim.

  • Rancid-P

    I have two G8-450 led grow lights in my 4×8 grow room and am on my third grow. I built my room with metal framing and drywall. When I started I knew I would do well vegging with the LEDs but wanted to see how well these guys would flower. Went ahead and got two 90w red ufo lights are recommended by G8 just to make sure I had my room set up to the max. Anyway, on my first grow I yielded almost as much as I used to with my HID system i had before. On my second grow i actually yielded slightly more than I used to with HID – I vegged a bit longer and was more patient during flowering. I am on my third grow and am more experienced with these leds soI am expecting to get even more buds this time around. I am really happy with my lights – got a great deal on them – thanks to the WeedBlog review!

  • John V.

    I bought the Advanced Platinum Series LED grow Lights at AdvancedLEDgrow.com. They sell LEDs directly from the manufacturer that designed the original Diamond Series Leds and supplied advancedledlights. Prices include shipping FedEx Priority with Tracking and I received the shipment in a week. I picked up their 600W LED for $689 compared to the $995 at advancedledlight. Just my $0.02. I will never go back to MH/HPS.

  • DankSwag

    I am so glad I found this site. Thanks Jay and all involved in vetting out what LEDs are worth having. Besides the confusion about LEDs with all the marketing (light bands chipsets ect) one significant aspect I missed initially was relationship of wattage to yield ratio. I got lucky and went with Dorm Grow G8, problem is I started with a 120 UFO bumped up to a 240 Full Spectrum. I was starting to wonder if LED would give me what I wanted. Now I know I just need to step up to more wattage to which is still relatively half of what a 1k HID and yet produce as well. If anyone wants to see what the DormGrow G8 has done for me so far see my grow journal at RIU dot org under DankSwag

  • Diydan

    There is bad hype on LED Grow Lights because when they came out with 1watt or less LED diodes which was not enough light intensity. But now that is 3watt, 5watt and higher integrated leds. But the cost can be outrageous. The same is true for hydroponic systems (outrageous prices). So I am starting a business that offers LED Grow Lights that I’ve used personally at a much more affordable price. I’m telling you these lights really work. I save about 50% on my power bill! I’m going to add all indoor grow equipment at more affordable prices. Check out the website, which is currently under construction. DIYINDOORGROW.com

  • Rob Saxe

    So what’s the rating on the super grow?

  • ContraCosta

    G8LED 900W grow light and two G8LED 90W Red UFOs – that is all you need. Hands down best growing system for the money (actually saves me money!)

    http://www.dormgrow.com/900-watt-led-grow-light.html

    These lights lit up half my garage and outperformed my flourescent/HPS setup I had going for over a year. Electrical bill lower by $214.

  • ContraCosta

    here is what i found in terms of reviews and real life grow journal videos – http://www.dormgrow.com/grow-journals

  • Neil Carpenter

    I picked up a 600w. HPS on Craigslist for 85 bucks, and got some freebies with it. Another 65 for a bulb, and….um, I’m not buying a thousand dollar light. Another 50 for the cool tube, and heat was no longer a concern.

    • Alex

      And how much was the ballast? That and the electricity costs from that is where the real difference is, while you’re burning 850w worth of electricity from your light the LED’s are putting out the same amount of energy for 300w, that really adds up.