Best Led Grow Lights 2018 : Reviews and Buying Guide

LED Grow lights have been the most popular grow lights in recent times. Not only do they occupy less space, but they emit less heat, provide a full spectrum of light with a high penetration value and consume less electricity while delivering maximum illumination. But hundreds of manufacturers and thousands of LED models which have flooded the market makes it extremely difficult to choose the LED grow light that would perfectly fit your bill.

There are only a handful of manufacturers who can be relied upon. Though there are a host of other factors that should be considered before investing on any LED light, we would have a look into them much later in the article.

Let’s start off with the list of the best LED grow lights that have been appreciated by growers all over

Best Led Grow Lights Reviews 2018

GalaxyHydro is a reputed brand, known for it’s cheap inexpensive solutions to your growing needs. Roleadro is the new brand behind GalaxyHydro and together they have developed some amazing grow solutions with updated designs and incorporating the latest changes in LED grow light technologies that you would like to own with pride. The Roleadro GalaxyHydro is a full spectrum LED grow light that can easily replace a 250W HPS system and has a coverage area of 3’x3’ i.e it is best suited for a 3’x3’ tent size. This 300W LED system has an actual power consumption of 132W +/- 5%, measures 12.1”x8.2”x2.4” and weighs around 6lbs. It has a sturdy aluminum shell built.

The main illuminating part of the device is equipped with durable and well tested Epileds 45 mil LED chips. These LEDs have the ability to deliver significantly larger amounts of light and provide more nutrient to your plants. The 3W LEDs are fixed on a circuit board with an aluminum substrate which adds protection to the LED. In addition there is an acrylic cover that keeps away harmful elements like dust, rust and micro particles from the LED panel. A Zener protector is connected to each LED, so that each LED works individually and even if one fails that will not affect the rest of the LEDs and they will continue to emit light the same way. Zener’s exit function keeps the circuit in working condition and enhances the durability of the product.

The unit has a well balanced full spectrum illumination. There are 86 Red LEDs, 10 Blue LEDs, 2 White LEDs and 2 in the UV and IR range. The Red and Blue lights and their ratio plays an important part in photosynthesis. The Red and Blue spectrum is well balanced and is in the most recommended ratio of 9:1. As mentioned it has its share of UV and IR LEDs and provides the necessary amount of UV and IR rays necessary for the plants. The UV rays help in germination and prevents the growth of harmful bacteria as well, while the IR rays play an important role in photosynthesis and aids in leaf building . The IR rays are more useful in the budding stage while the UV rays facilitate growth in the vegetative state. This Optimal light balance is sure to increase your yield by 30-50%.

Roleadro Galaxy Hydro LED grow lights has a higher PAR value compared to the LED grow lights available in the market in the same price range. Their value definitely varies with the height but for this 300W model the PAR value from a height of 18” is around 453umol. The strategically placed LEDs at an angle of 120 degrees emulate sunlight and are also responsible for the high PAR value.

The GalaxyHydro Grow lights have 20% higher heat dissipation than the standard ones available in the market. This is due to two UL certified cooling fans that have high speed and are efficient enough to dissipate or throw away the heat. Additionally the aluminum heat sink also aids in heat dissipation and successfully keeps the temperature inside the tent cool.

Lastly, this model is itself inexpensive and also saves a lot of money in the long run. It consumes less energy in terms of electricity and is known to reduce your electricity consumption by 50% as compared to old LED grow lights.

The Roleadro GalaxyHydro LED lights are backed by a 2 year manufacturer warranty and a 30 days money back policy in case you are not satisfied with its performance and want to return it. The Roleadro GalaxyHydro LED grow light is also available in a 600W option.

PROS:
  • Full Light spectrum with best RED:Blue ratio and UV, IR rays
  • High PAR value
  • Low consumption of electricity
  • Sturdy built, and light weight
  • Zener protection
  • Great heat dissipation

CONS:
  • Not Dimmable
  • No auto timer
  • Not Waterproof
  • Cannot manually control the spectrum
  • Daisy chain not possible in the 300W model

Developed from years of research and rigorous toil, the Maxisun Dimmable 300W or MDR300 has been most popular among the best growers in the world. Though we would be discussing the model with 300W, the Maxsisun Dimmable Grow Lights are also available in 450W,600W and 1000W models. It is a highly affordable 12 band full spectrum, programmable grow light and is also available in an optional timer control variant. The MDR300 can easily replace a 250W HPS while consuming only 142W of power. The timer control variant consumes even less @126W. This LED unit is capable covering an area of 40”x40” during the vegetative state and an area of 30”x30” during the blooming state.

The MDR300 consists of 60 Epiled/Bridgelux LEDs of 5W each summing up to a maximum of 300W. These LEDs are said to be the best in business and provide you a higher PAR value compared to the regular ones. The LED design layout along with the presence of reflectors and secondary reflectors boost plant growth and magnify the PAR output, thereby increasing the light penetration by almost 150%.The full Spectrum along with the right IR balance aids in a perfect PAR output and is specifically designed to optimize the metabolic processes.

The two operating knobs let you programme the light intensity and you can be in full control of your plants whether they are in the vegetative state or in the budding state. The controls allow you to adjust the lights, their spectrum and intensity for different grow stages from germination to harvest.

The LED unit has two in-built cooling fans that take care of the heat and there hasn’t been any complain as such from any consumer regarding the heat dissipation of this unit though the company itself doesn’t provide any clear information regarding heat sinks.

This best led grow light is backed by a 6 year warranty and has a lifespan of 1,00,000 hours which will generally exceed the warranty period. It also comes with a 60day money back policy.

PROS:
  • Affordable with Epiled/Bridgelux LEDs
  • Full Light spectrum with IR rays
  • High PAR value with reflectors and excellent canopy penetration
  • Low consumption of electricity
  • 2year warranty period with 1,00,000 hours lifespan
  • Two cooling fans

CONS:
  • No timer control in this unit
  • No information regarding heat sinks

Viparspectra is one of the most trusted brands if not the most in the LED grow light business. It has a wide range of LED grow lights available in different categories of power, intensity and features and you will definitely come across one that will suit your need or requirement. For the sake of the article we will discuss the 450W reflector series and the 1200W variant much later in the list. To start off with let’s see what’s in store for us in the 450W model, the V450. The most stunning fact about this company is that the Viparspectra has been developed, researched and manufactured by indoor growers and hence they have been designed keeping in mind the optimal conditions for the best yields. The Reflector series is scientifically engineered to strike a balance between the PAR/Lumen output and the coverage area. The unit measures 15.8”x8.4”x2.4” and weighs 6lbs.

The V450 has a strong sturdy and durable built. It features 90 pcs of high intensity 5W Epiled/Bridgelux LEDs producing the same yield compared to a 400W HID light while consuming around 200W power. The V450 covers a full spectrum band of light with a well balanced mixture of red blue and white lights. It is perfect for a 2.5’x2.5’ area when hung from a height of 24” during the vegetative state while from 18” the coverage area comes to 2’x2’ during the flowering state.

The V450 boasts of a 70% more heat dissipation compared to its competitors in the industry. This is facilitated by advanced high speed fans and premium aluminum heat sinks. The high speed fans are less noisy and provide a quieter environment.

Two switches allow you to shift from the vegetative stage to the bloom stage.

This highly affordable yet effective LED unit is backed by a three year warranty and a 30 day money back policy.

PROS:
  • Inexpensive lightweight and durable
  • Optimal balance between PAR/Lumen value and coverage area
  • 70% more heat dissipation
  • 90pcs of Bridgelux/Epiled LEDs
  • Vegetative and Bloom Switch
  • High speed quiet fans
  • 3 year warranty and 30 day money back policy

CONS:
  • More blue light than red
  • Not suitable for big gardens
  • Not dimmable
  • No timer control

The R450 has been designed to replace or as an alternative to 600W HID lights. The Meizhi Reflector Series R450 is an affordable full spectrum compact LED grow light with a low electrical consumption of 195W. The unit measures 15.8” x 8.3” x 2.8” and weighs around 6lbs. It can successfully cover an area of 2’x3.5’ to give optimum yields.

The R450 is equipped with 90 high intensity 5W Epistar LEDs which includes a right balance of blue, red and white lights along with 3 infra red lights to improve yields. The Epistar LEDs are intense and will give you the full value for your money. Thus it provides you with a full optimal range that would favour growth from germination to harvest. The LED has an ETL certification of 50,000 to 1,00,000 hours which will give you a certification of the durability of the product. The 120 degree reflectors that surround each LED diode enhances the light penetration by directing the entire light downward and thereby cutting off the loss. The dual switches aid in optimising the intensity for the vegetative and the bloom stage. The PAR value of the unit is 779umols which exceeds the standard PAR value of 600umols by a considerable margin and is impressive considering the price that you shell out for this model.

The R450 has high quality aluminum heat sinks and cooling fans so that the unit never gets heated up. The heat generated is successfully dissipated and the durability of the LEDs enhanced.

The model is suitable for daisy chain arrangement and is backed by a 1 year warranty wherein the repair fee is not charged. It also has a 3 months warranty which includes free components, repair fee and service and a 30 day money back policy.

PROS:
  • Affordable lightweight and durable
  • Epistar LEDs
  • Good balance of blue red white and IR light
  • Dual switches for veg and bloom stage
  • High PAR value of 779umols
  • 120degree reflector ensures greater penetration
  • Daisy chain functionability

CONS:
  • 1 year warranty only and that too on repair fee
  • All components are chargeable after three months
  • Comparatively new brand

Established in 2011 by the Shenzhen King Lighting co. Ltd which is based in Guandong China, Bestva has already gained immense popularity with its series of high quality LED grow lights. It has been successful in establishing its identity and brand value with distinct and different fixtures in its Double Chip, Elite and Smart Series grow lights. The Bestva reflector full spectrum LED grow light is a member of the Elite Grow light series. The Elite 600W boasts of a yield similar to a 400W HID light while consuming only 132W of power. This highly effective and low energy consuming LED unit is perfect for an area of 2’x2.2’ when hung at a height of 24”. The Unit measures 11.5”x7.9”x2.8” and weighs approximately 5.7lbs.

The Elite 600W is equipped with 60 double chip Bridgelux LEDs of 10W each. The LEDs are placed at an angle of 90 degrees and has a frequency of 50-60HZ along with a life span of 1,00,000 hours. The ELite 600W is upgraded from the generic spectrum of their DC series and the latest model uses 10 different wavelength LEDs to cover the full spectrum. The ratio of the Red to Blue LEDs have also been modified from 8:3 to 1:1 wherein equal number of blue and red LEDs are scattered in the panel along with IR LEDs. This LED unit is more suited for the growth of medicinal plants. The VEG and BLOOM modes support growing stage and germination or seeding stage respectively. A 15-18 hours of lighting regularly is recommended in these cases for optimal yield while the Full Spectrum mode aids in flowering or fruiting and a 12-14 hour of lighting is recommended in this case.

The Bestva Elite 600W has an upgraded cooling system which does not use any fans but a 5mm thick integral aluminum structure radiator which is better and more effective than multiple  dispersed radiators and cooling fans.

The Bestva Elite 600W is made of high temperature resistant materials and is backed by a 3 year warranty with round the clock service along with a 30 day money back guarantee.

PROS:
  • Low energy consumption of 132W
  • Double chip Bridgelux LEDs
  • Red to blue ratio 1:1
  • VEG BLOOM and FULL SPECTRUM modes
  • Upgraded cooling system
  • 3 year warranty and a 30 day money back guarantee

CONS:
  • Not waterproof
  • No timer
  • More suited for medicinal plants
  • Not dimmable

Another full spectrum grow light that will perfectly fit in even a small budget is the MarsHydro Mars600. This unit is backed by 8 years of rigorous and intense research and innovation. The Mars600 uses a LED technology that is low on power consumption and heat generation, thereby keeping the running costs to a bare minimum. This highly cost effective and efficient LED grow light measures 17”x11”x3” and weighs around 9.8lbs. The LED unit can cover an area of 2’x3.5’ in the vegetative stage and 2.5’x2’ in the flowering stage.

The Mars600 is equipped with 120 pcs of 5W Epistar LEDs that emit a decent full spectrum required for optimal growth in any growing stage. Epistar LEDs are well known for their performance and durability and do not fail to impress us here too. The Mars 600 has a chip density of 1.53 but lacks the inclusion of UV or IR rays in the spectrum. The Mars 600 can easily replace a 300W HPS light while consuming only 132W of electricity.

It has a PAR value of 980umols from a height of 18” which is pretty high considering the other LED units in this price range and hence can boast off higher penetration an in turn better yields. The LEDs are placed at an angle of 90 degrees and 120 degrees across four wavelength bands and provides you optimal conditions throughout the bloom cycle. You need to just vary the time of operation reducing it from 18-20 hours in the germination stage to 14-18hours in the vegetative stage and finally up to 12 hours in the flowering stage.

The heat generated is successfully dissipated by two high speed cooling fans that makes a maximum noise of 56dB which is on the lower side and massive pin cushion heat sinks.

The failsafe diode design of the unit adds to its life. The Zener protector attached to each LED ensures that if one chip fails the rest of them still work and you have an overall active LED grow light unit.

The unit comes with a three year effective warranty and a 30 day money back policy

PROS:
  • Covers an area of 2’x3.5’
  • Epistar LEDs used
  • Energy consumption is just 132W
  • High PAR value
  • Two low noise cooling fans and massive pin cushion heat sinks
  • 3year warranty and 30 day money back policy

CONS:
  • No UV and IR rays
  • Not waterproof
  • Not dimmable
  • No timer

The P900 is a part of the new generation of Platinum LED lights that have surpassed every other LED unit in terms of performance and durability. Designed by the US based company Platinum LED Lights, LLC. they feature the highest PAR per watt value along with the most effective advanced 12 band spectrum that produces the maximum yields while consuming less power and generating less heat. The P900 is capable of replacing a 1000W HID light easily and consumes only 512W of electricity. The light is 100% usable and is perfectly balanced to optimise the photosynthetic processes. The P900 is suited for massive applications and can cover an area of 6’x4.5’ at 18” height. The P900 panel measures 36”x12”x3” and weighs approximately 35lbs.

The P900 was designed to replace the 1000W HID lights and features 300 pcs of high performance 3W Bridgelux LEDs. The 90 degree secondary focusing lenses ensure that light reaches every single corner and no plant is neglected. Above all the Zener protectors attached to each LED is responsible for uninterrupted usage even when one LED is not working. The actual power consumed by this unit is much less and ranges between 279W for the VEG switch and 515W for the BLOOM switch. You have the ability to switch the light intensity and spectrum in accordance with the state your plants are in.With an advanced 12 band spectrum it emits light from the UV to the IR range along 12 different bands to ensure optimal plant growth and development. The light spectrum supports photosynthesis as well as photomorphogenesis thus enabling not only full plant development but also enhancing the range of biochemical diversity within the plants and improving their biomass. This all is achieved while consuming less power and hence the heat generated is also minimised. Furthermore to dissipate the heat there are four high speed fans with very low noise levels and a highly effective high grade aluminum heat sink that does not let the heat affect the internal circuit and maintains a cool environment in the vicinity as well.

The P900 is commonly used by people in horticulture, hydroponics, indoor gardening and aquaculture and can be arranged in rows to facilitate large scale indoor horticulture and aero-farms. It is estimated to have a life span of 50,000-1,00,000 hours and is backed by a five year warranty and a 90 day money back guarantee which is quite high compared to the industry standards.

PROS:
  • High coverage area with great penetration
  • Bridgelux LEDs with Zener protectors
  • Energy consumption is as low as 515W
  • Highest PAR/ Watt value LED
  • Four whisper quiet cooling fans and high grade aluminum heat sink
  • 12 band spectrum includes UV and IR

CONS:
  • Can be fitted on powerful beams or roofs only
  • Can’t be fitted at a height lower than 12”
  • Not dimmable

The KING PLUS 1000 is a new and yet a very powerful product. The unit is equivalent to a HID light of 400W and the first thing that will attract you about this unit is the extremely low power consumption to the yield that this unit will earn for you. The power consumption of the unit is 210W and the unit has a coverage area of 3.4’x3.8’. The unit measures 12.2 x 8.26x 2.36”and weighs 6.4lbs. Many consumers feel that the name KING PLUS 1000W refers to the power equivalence as compared to HID lights and may feel cheated when they find out that it’s not the case. You have to understand as with all LED units this numerical value refers to the total wattage of the LEDs i.e the wattage of each LED multiplied by the number of LEDs in use.

The LED circuit board in this unit is a little different from the standard models that we have listed so far. Each Epistar LED unit consists of not a single diode but two 5W diodes or a double chip technology that enhances the brightness or the luminosity by almost two folds. This technology also aids in maintaining the uniformity in light distribution. Further more Zener protectors are added to enhance the durability of the product. By now you must have known that Zener protectors enable the working of the remaining diodes even if one has gone for a toss or has stopped working. There are a total of 100 such small units that together bring about a full band spectrum with a proper balanced ratio of red, blue, yellow and white lights along with UV and IR rays. The KING PLUS 1000W has a 71 units in red, 14 in blue, 8 in yellow, 5 in white and 1 each in the UV and IR zone. The full spectrum enables plant growth through the full circle from germination to flowering. The unit has a high PAR value of 958umols at a height of 12”.

Cooling of such an unit is an extremely important task and will not only eliminate the risk of the circuit burning but will also prevent the burning of plants in the near vicinity or heating up of the environment in the grow tent or area. This is brought about by multiple heat sinks with ball bearing fans that constantly aid in maintaining the running temperature of the unit.

The unit has a lifespan of 50000 working hours and is backed by a 3 year warranty

PROS:
  • Double Chip Epistar LEDs with Zener protectors
  • 50% consumption of electricity
  • Balanced full band spectrum with UV and IR rays
  • Unique efficient cooling system
  • Small unit , lightweight and affordable
  • 3 year warranty

CONS:
  • Not waterproof
  • Not dimmable
  • No VEG or Bloom switch
  • Not the most long lasting option available

We have already mentioned that Viparspectra excels in LED grow lights and the V1200 is no exception to this rule. It may not be the cheapest option available in the market but definitely one of the most effective ones and the perfect value for your money. Designed by growers it is scientifically designed to get the best possible ratio of PAR/Lumen output to coverage area. It provides an yield equivalent to a 1000W HID system and consumes only 524W which is extremely low compared to the other grow lights that yield similar values. The unit has a coverage of 4.5”x4.5” at 32” for the vegetative state and a coverage of 3.5’x3.5’ at 24” for the flowering stage. The unit measures 19.4”x19.4”x3” and weighs 20lbs which is also low if you consider the output of this unit.

The V1200 is powered by 240pcs of 5W Bridgelux/Epiled LED units. These LEDs are well balanced and will give you a full spectrum along with IR rays to facilitate growth and development through all the growing stages. The VEG and Bloom Switches allow you to effectively control the spectrum during different growing stages. Its predetermined and you do not have to have a knowledge of the same to manipulate it.

With this power being belted out the unit must be in the need of efficient cooling. To bring about effective cooling the unit is equipped with 6 separate cooling fans and aluminum heat sinks. They reduce the heat generated by a whooping 70% when compared to similar HID units.

The unit is backed by a three year warranty and has a lifespan of 1,00,000 hours and has a 30 day return policy if you are still in doubt

PROS:
  • 5W Bridgelux/Epiled LEDs
  • Equivalent to 1000W HPS
  • Low electrical consumption of 524W
  • High coverage area
  • Balanced Full spectrum
  • Advanced cooling system

CONS:
  • Indoor use only
  • Not dimmable
  • Not waterproof

Here is the last entry to our list and many have reviewed it to be the best in business. With its cutting edge technology that enables greater penetration and a higher coverage area while you are not shelling out a lot from your pocket for such a product definitely makes it worth having a glance. The BESTVA LED 2000W uses a dual chip LED technology with an efficient full spectrum luminance to enable greater yields in all phases of growth. The unit compares to a 1400W HPS system and consumes only 390W which is very low when compared to other LED units. It has twice the effective coverage area of the reflector series and is perfect for a growing area of 7.8’x7.5’ at 24” height.

The unit consists of 200 pcs of double chip 10W Bridgelux/Epileds LEDs that provide 50% more brightness than single chip ones. They have the highest PAR/Lumen output per LED.The LEDs are placed at an angle of 120 degrees so that there is maximum coverage and equal distribution of light. The efficient full spectrum that ranges between 380-780nm are best suited for indoor plants at all the growth stages. It has a balance of UV and IR rays in the spectra. The full band spectrum is well balanced to optimise plant growth.

Though the unit already boasts of a cooler environment, but the holes on the aluminum panel, and the glass make heat convection system adds to the cooling effect.

The unit is backed by a three year warranty and a 30 day money back policy.

PROS:
  • Double chip 10W Bridgelux/Epileds LEDs
  • Low electrical consumption of 390W
  • Extremely High coverage area
  • Balanced Full spectrum with UV and IR rays
  • 120 degrees angle
  • Advanced cooling system

CONS:
  • Indoor use only
  • Not dimmable
  • Not waterproof
  • No VEG/Bloom switch

best Led Grow light 2018 : Buying Guide

have already provided you with a list of the best LED grow lights available in the market. But just choosing one of the above may not be appropriate for your indoor gardening requirements and hence you need to consider a few factors and know a bit more about a few integral details before you actually go on and get the Grow light of your choice. Let’s have a look at the factors that may affect your decision.

COVERAGE AREA:

Getting the basic things right. This is the first thing that you need to consider even before you start searching for the grow light of your choice. You need to identify and enlist the area that you wish to cover. The Grow light coverage area changes with the height at which it is hung and also the state at which the plants are. For a particular LED grow light the coverage area is more during the vegetative state than the blooming stage. So basically you can narrow down your search with this basic filter. For large areas you may need more than one LED grow light unit and hence it’s recommendable to choose one that is daisy chainable so that a single kind of LED grow light can lit up your entire grow area and there is uniformity in the light received by the various plants in that area.

PHASE OF PLANT GROWTH and SPECTRUM:

The phase of plant growth is very important when choosing the LED grow lights. If you are not looking for a specific phase and want a light to suffice through all the growing stages then you need to choose a full spectrum LED grow light. Now full spectrum grow lights are available in a wide range of band options. The best ones or the ones that will promote development and growth from germination to flowering are the ones that have a balanced ratio of red, blue and white lights along with a share of UV and IR rays. The best ratio of red to blue is 9:1. Some LED units have dimmable knobs to control the intensity of the lights while others are equipped with switches to alternate from VEG and Bloom stages. Switching both of them together will give a full spectrum light. The PAR/Lumen value is also essential in determining the penetration value of the light. The PAR value is determined in accordance with the height. The higher the PAR value the better it is.

HID EQUIVALENCE:

The power of the HID light which can be replaced by the LED unit is extremely important. This helps you choose as to what strength of LED you need to buy. The numerical value expressed at the end of an LED model is not the HID equivalence and consumers are often mistaken by it. For eg. V1200 refers to the total LED wattage or the wattage of an individual LED multiplied by the number of LEDs though the HID equivalence of V1200 is 1000W.

LED:

The quality and the make of the LED chip along with the individual power and the technology makes an important mark in the LED grow light unit. Most high end LED grow lights use Bidgelux/Epileds LEDs or Epistar LEDs. Some LED grow lights use a double or dual chip technology wherein a single diode is replaced by two diodes together. They are almost twice as brighter and better. Some LED chips have a Zener protector attached to them to enhance the durability of the product. The protector eliminates the risk of breaking the circuit when a single LED is not working and hence the remaining unit still runs when attached to one.

ELECTRICAL CONSUMPTION:

The electrical consumption of the LED grow lights are generally much lower than any HID unit, but you get LED units which have the same power and give the same yield but consume much less electricity. Going for such a model will help in lowering the running cost.

HEAT DISSIPATION:

Though the heat generated by LEDs are much less compared to any other kind of grow lights, even then the heat generated has to be successfully dissipated or else it may burn and disrupt the LED circuit and also increase the temperature of the growing environment and affect plant growth. Too much heat can even burn the plants. Most LED grow units have high grade aluminum heat sinks and cooling fans to take care of this factor.

BUDGET:

Lastly and may be one of the most important factors is the budget you can shell out for the unit of your choice. Though our list includes mostly inexpensive affordable variants, some very durable and premium quality one are a little expensive but will prove to be cost effective in the long run.

CONCLUSION:

With this we come to the end of our article. We have provided you with a proper buying guide as well as a list of the best LED grow lights in the business. Our list is a comprehensive one and varies through the entire power range so that you do not have difficulty in finding one that would suit your needs.