View Full Version : Name brand bulbs worth it?

Indicanna Jones
09-19-2009, 06:47 PM
It seems like you could save some cash with "generic bulbs".
Any thoughts or experiences?

09-19-2009, 07:23 PM
I use a Phillips MasterColor Ceramic Metal Halide bulb in my 400w HPS light.

I found it to have the best color spectrum of all the light out there. They don't sell it as a glowlight bulb so the price is a bit cheaper, about $100.

David G.
09-20-2009, 08:41 PM
Lighting is the single most important consideration for growing indoors, so I would be very leery about using the standard HID lamps that you find at the hardware store. Almost all of the HPS lamps we carry have enhanced spectrums specifically for growing plants, as do most of the MH lamps. And the standard lamps we carry offer the highest lumen output available.

I'm not saying that you should spend four times the money for the most expensive grow lamp (unless your budget allows for it), but do realize that lighting is extremely important, and using the wrong bulb, or even worse using a second-had lamp when you don't know for certain how many hours the lamp has been run for, can have a dramatic effect on growth rates and yields. My advice is that if you're going to invest a lot of money and time in a setup, then choose the best lamp you can afford.

Indicanna Jones
09-21-2009, 05:40 PM
Thanks guys

To be more specific:

600 HPS Super Bulb - 91,000 lumens

Compared with

600 HPS Hortilux Bulb - 88,000 lumens

Both sold by BGH

Both have a 1 year warranty

The Hortilux is 50 bucks more with less lumens.

Is it just a "name brand thing"?

David G.
09-21-2009, 10:04 PM
The Hortilux is one of our biggest selling lamps, if not the biggest. I'm not the biggest fan of the 600W version, as the lumen rating takes a bit of a dive, but then again lumens aren't everything (lumens are what people see, PAR is what plants see).

I've never personally done a side-by-side comparison between a standard 600W HPS and a Hortilux so I can't give you a definitive answer, but I can tell you that we sell a ton of Hortilux lamps - far more than the standard lamps. I would assume that if customers keep coming back for the Hortilux then they must be happy with it.

I guess what it boils down to is the value of the crop. Let's say that the Hortilux produced a whopping 10-15% higher yield (I'm just pulling that number out of my rear end; I doubt the improvement would really be that high). Would a 10% increase in yield be worth the extra $50? What if it was closer to only 5%? If the answer is no, then it's not worth spending the extra money based on the crop it's being used on.

Indicanna Jones
09-22-2009, 04:59 AM
Very informative, thanks.

09-28-2009, 02:13 PM
How about the Agro bulb that is 430W? They say it will run in a 400W digital lumatek ballist? I notice the lumens is a bit less on this bulb? Is this also because of a adjusted spectrum?


David G.
09-28-2009, 10:45 PM
The 430W Son Agro was one of the first enhanced HPS lamps in our industry; it's been out for many years. The Hortilux came later, and is definitely an improvement over the Son Agro in almost every way. Also, you won't necessarily get all those extra lumens on the Son Agro unless you run it with a true 430W ballast.