With cooler temperatures upon us and outdoor gardening slowing down, we thought this would be a good time to introduce you to a recent addition to our LED offerings that we are excited to bring to you for your indoor growing space. We love these Photontek lights for many reasons, but their clever design, diode quality, pricing, and sizing options were a plus when making our decision to offer these in our stores.
LED lighting has finally earned a place in the indoor horticulture market, and we feel good about where the technology is heading. There have been many old industry standards that have been challenged over the years, such as the need to use blue bulbs for “growth” and red bulbs/HPS for flowering plants. That approach still works, but newer LED’s are well-rounded enough to do both cycles with a constant mixed or full spectrum, especially with the dimming technology. All of the Photontek units will contain white, red, and far red diodes for a nice full spectrum, and the diodes are reputable brands such as Osram for the red and Lumileds for white.
Photontek currently offers five lighting models with an optional controller that allows the grower to dial in the proper lighting environment needed to grow robust and healthy plants. Photontek uses light bars rather than large panels, which allows for the most effective passive cooling and cooler plant canopy temperatures. Each unit comes with a plug-in dimmer that will start with off, but has 25, 50, 75, and 100% power options. The optional controller offers many benefits such as temperature-based dimming, sunrise and sunset simulation, custom timing options, and dimming by 1% increments. These are great features but not essential unless you want that extra level of control.
For smaller spaces: New Product Alert!
Photontek just released two new units for smaller growing areas: their 200 watt unit (SQ200W Pro) will cover up to 2.6’x2.6’ and comes in with a PPF output of 508 µmol/s and a Photon Efficacy (fixture efficiency) of 2.5 µmol/J. The 300 watt fixture (SQ300W Pro) is suitable for up to 3.3’x3.3’ and comes in with an impressive PPF output of 816 µmol/s and a Photon Efficacy of 2.7 µmol/J. These units would be perfect for the smaller grow tents such as this Gorilla Grow Tent or similarly small closets. These compact units will produce high quality plants with excellent yields within the suggested footprint area.
Photontek’s larger lights are a take on what seems to be a current standard for LED designs that have six to eight 100-watt bars aligned in rows. We like Photontek’s approach to mounting the bars to the frame by utilizing magnets that guide the electrical connections together, which makes the assembly pretty seamless. It also makes these units a breeze to ship compared to the earlier models that arrive in boxes looking like a 42” plasma TV.
Here’s the specifications for their larger lights:
- Efficacy: 2.7 µmol/J
- PPF:1256 µmol/s
- Coverage: 3’3×3’3 to 4’x4’
- Efficacy: 2.7 μmol/J
- PPF: 1620 μmol/s
- Coverage: 4’x4’ to 5’x5’
- Efficacy: 2.9 µmol/J
- PPF: 2925 µmol/s’
- Coverage: 5’x5’ (if using co2) or 6’x6’
If you want to check these units out in action, all Fifth Season locations are currently growing plants with these on display. We’re always happy to share what our experiences have been and help determine what can be a good fit for you.