My tenure in growing cannabis with LED grow lights started about 4 years ago and LED technology has matured over that time and changed almost completely. Early LED grow lights were not very powerful which meant they weren’t exactly great at growing cannabis. Sure, they could veg a cannabis plant but when it came time to grow big fat buds the lights just couldn’t provide the light energy and light bands required to produce those extreme flowers.
That’s all changed though, many manufacturers are now building HIP replacement LED grow lights which perform amazingly well and are available at a low entry price. LEDs are still a bit pricier then standard HID (high intensity discharge) lights but with the massive energy savings, and incredibly long operation times quickly eat up any up front extra costs. Indoor gardeners if you plan to treat cannabis as an indoor plant you’ll need full spectrum led technology to get the best results.
Viparspectra Reflectorseries Cannabis Grow Review
ViparSpectra is a very popular grow light that most of my readers seem to invest in. I completed a grow with a Viparspectra Reflector Series 450 Watt grow light that was very successful. The grow took place in a 3’X3’ tent with the grow light hung 24 inches above my cannabis plants which were a mixture of White Widow and Grape God feminized.
I placed 4 young plants under the grow light and 6 weeks later I had grown some fat bushy plants. To ensure good bud growth, I trained the plants and tied them down to ensure that all the future bud areas will receive full access to the grow light. At the end of week 6 I flipped the “Veg” switch to “Bloom mode” and changed the light cycle from 18 on to 12 on 12 off.
As my plants started to flower they were still increasing significantly in height so I dropped the light to 12’ above the canopy to reduce the stretching and increase the light intensity to the newly developing buds. The Reflector Series grow light does a fantastic job moving the light it produces around your grow area. Where other grow lights have a hot spot directly under the center of the grow light unit that can cause plants in that area to burn or stress the Viparspectra light panel is able to move the light evenly down to your plant without a hot area causing damage to the plants directly below it.
One issue with the light is that the light it produces is heavily in the red and blue spectrum which causes this grow light to cast a very purplish hue; this makes it impossible to see issues with your plants without switching the grow light off and a normal light on. Not a huge issue but some other grow light manufactures are now producing wide-band lights which provide a more neutral colored light which makes viewing your plants while under the grow light much easier.
By week 4 the buds at the center of the cannabis plant had joined and created a nice fat cola, the buds weren’t showing signs of heavy crystallization yet at this point. By the end of week 5 the buds started to show their stick crystals and I added some bud buster formula that I mix up special for my own grows. By week 6 the buds were mature with foggy THC glands, but I decided to keep the plant under the light for one more week until the glands become mostly amber in color. I flushed the plants for that last week to remove nutrients from the plants.
Cannabis Grow Conclusion
The 4 plants in this grow produced a total of 460 grams of finished cannabis which was short of my normal grows which produce 1.2 grams per watt. Based on that average I was expecting this grow light to produce 540 grams. These are just estimates as feeding and strain can affect the yield as well. The two strains of cannabis that were grown did equally well under the Viparspectra reflector series grow light, both smoked very well and produced the expected highs. I believe both the strains had THC levels above 14% but that’s only based on feel and not scientific measurement.
Checking over my power bill from before the grow and after the power consumption of the Viparspectra Reflectorseries 450w led on average $20.00 a month cheaper than when I run a 450 Watt HID light.
Overall this budget priced led panel did a better job than I expected. Other budget priced lights don’t bring enough intensity to the game which will really hurt yield and THC content. The Reflector Series grow light provides just enough intensity and light wavelengths to successfully grow some decent weed. You won’t break any yield records using one of these lights but for the budget minded this light is well worth consideration.
The overall grow length took two weeks longer then my average grow would take with a similar powered HID light.
This light was very easy to grow with, no hot spots to deal with was amazingly helpful. My center plant grew the same as all the surrounding plants which goes to prove that their Reflector Series technology does work as advertised.
Quality Grow Light for Under $200
There are loads of LED grow lights available in the under $200 market place currently but many of these brands are poor quality and provide at best marginal quality light which will get you by on a small grow but won’t blow your socks off with fat sticky buds.
A company that has strived to provide quality grow lights at a cheap price is Viparspectra which is a brand created in China by a top grow light manufacturer. Viparspectra LED grow lights are available at low prices because the company sells their product directly cutting out middle men. This savings is past directly on to the consumer who benefits from low prices on a power high quality LED grow lights. These grow lights are geared toward the beginner and intermediate grower and provide some of the same features more expensive grow lights include.
Benefits of Viparspectra Brand 450 Par LED Grow Light
Viparspectra’s product build is very good. Metal cases, high speed cooling fans and superior quality 5-watt LED Chips by Bridgelux and Epileds which are top builders of LED chips.
Viparspectra grow lights provide the following light wavelengths for your grow:
730nm -Infrared 660nm 630nm 615nm 595nm 580nm 475nm 460nm 445nm 440nm 3000K 7500K.
These products are full spectrum and provide comparable light to natural sunlight. Your cannabis plants will veg extremely well under the Viparspectra’s “veg” mode but when it’s time to flower your plants just flip the “bloom” switch and your light profile changes to provide extra energy and light spectrums to support your bud’s growth.
As you probably know already, LED grow lights produce much less height due to their efficacy in converting energy directly into light. LED’s still can generate a lot of heat, and to prevent long term damage to the LED components of your grow light many manufacturers including cooling systems to help alleviate heat issues. ViparSpectra is a superior choice because it is equipped with heat sinks and multiple 4.72-inch high speed fans which draw hot air across the heat sinks and exhaust the heat through a fancy dissipation unit. Heat can be a major issue in small grow tents so it’s critical to use an LED grow light that won’t produce enough heat to increase the overall heat of the grow space.
Viparspectra has the Top Guarantee and Warranty
Each Viparspectra grow light products including the Reflector Series brand includes a full 3-year warranty which is unheard of in the marketspace. There is also a 30 day return for refund guarantee of you aren’t satisfied with your purchase. You can have total confidence that your investment in this grow light will be paying dividends to you for a long time.
Viparspectra make two models of LED grow lights the V, R and the Timer series. These led panels come in the same case so they look very similar but there is one large difference. The difference between the two units is the light spectrum only. The R series provides an 80% increase of red LEDs for enhanced flowering. The Viparspectra Timer Control Series comes with built in timers and dimmable light, so you can dial in exactly how much light you want your plants to get without having to raise or lower the light.
All of the series are based on the same technology so I’m comfortable saying that all of their products are quality made and use quality LED drivers. For a budget sensitive priced line up Viparspectra is a solid choice for any beginner or intermediate grower of cannabis.