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silver surfer

50W ! high tech DIY LED lamp test

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hi BlueB,

 

i'm sorry, i can't make more update actually I have no led grow running.

 

You said you will use Ledengin 10W chips, this is a bad idea, those leds have a very low efficiency.

 

About white leds, not related to a particular brand, coolwhites have the better efficiencies, warmwhites have the lower efficiencies.

The warmwhites are nice for our plants but they use a lot of electricity for a low photons emission.

 

Don't care too much about the spectrum (you know the basis about spectrums very well), photon emission is always better than spectrum. Use efficient leds, this is the most important thing.

 

Actually I don't know exactly the best spectrum for flowering. This is very complicated because this is related to leds efficiency, and strains. At a low intensity, a green or yellow to orange wavelengths can't be usefull for the MJ plant, but a very high intensity the green/yellow/orange is used, that's why an hps is so efficient.

 

Veg needs less intensity than bloom, so Blue and Red are enough for a good veg. 630 or 660nm, this is not important, 450 or 460nm is not important, give blue and red to a plant for veg, she will be happy, use 2 blue/3reds, or 3 coolwhites very efficient leds/3reds.

For bloom, use white and red. This is better to use coolwhites, because they give more lm/W than neutrals or warmwhites. But Cree or Lumiled have very efficient neutrals, so this is possible to use them. For bloom, some strains prefers 630nm, some prefers 660nm, so this is a good idea to use the same amount of 630 and 660. White leds will give blue, gree, yellow, amber, red and far red. But I don't know the best ratio white/red, i'm still searching for it.

 

Greetz

Silav

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The 10w Leds I'm using are 2.5w x 4 per led. They run at 700mA and are much more efficient than a 5w single chip Led. They put out 20% more lumens/W than the 5w Leds of the same manufacturer. In other words they are 220% brighter than the 5w leds that are single chip.

 

The nice thing about them is less wiring for me.

 

The issue I want to try and resolve is if it's possible to flower nicely with red/blue only (with a touch of green). So far I have seen promising results as long as there is enough red in the mixture.

 

My Led configuration will consist of 4 x blue 460nm, 5 x warm white, 12 deep red 660nm.

 

If the result is poor flowering, I will add 4 more pure 630nm Leds in the corners of the panel I build. Overall, it is a 5 x 5 matrix with 21 Leds or 180w as of now, and 4 more later if needed making 25 total, or 220w. The 10w leds are running at 73.5% of full power capacity.

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But I don't know the best ratio white/red, i'm still searching for it.

 

Greetz

Silav

 

Based on how nice your Critical's buds are from your 3 neutral, 1 red, 3 deep red mixture per engine, I would say you found the perfect mixture bro. Those buds are the nicest I've ever seen. So colorful and happy looking. The leaves on your buds reached towards the light during your whole grow.

 

I would say it doesn't get much better than that. Why change anything?

 

B

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Why change anything?

 

because the g/W ratio was only 0,7g/W :). If any I had no issues with my Scrog. With a good Scrog, I'm pretty sure that I could make as well as 0,8g/W with my first 50W lamp

 

with a 250HPS and this cannalope haze, this is easy to reach 0,75-0,8g/W. I will never be happy with a LED pannel if i don't harvest with a better yield than with an HPS250. My challenge is 1g/W at least, I will never stop building new lamps until I harvest more than 1g/W :).

 

i would like to try a coolwhites/reds engine, without lenses (I loose 10-20% of light because of the lenses), with 80° emitters (no need of lenses).

 

I made two lamps with neutral whites Rebels, the first ones are more warm, the second ones are more coolwhites. When you order a led, you don't really know the temperature she will have. You order a 4000K neutral, you get a 3500K or a maybe 5000K (this is related to the bin, which is difficult to know when you buy small quantities).

 

Only side by side tests could tell which is the best spectrum, so actually I'm building several different engines. .

 

Coolwhites are more efficient than other white leds.

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Maybe you would have an increase in yield with a bump in LED power. 50w may just not have enough penetration to really get the density you are looking for.

 

Not that I am in a position to give advice yet, what about trying these LEDs. They also make them in 3w and 5w. Apparently they use the same chip for all of their LEDs. Just mounted to a different board etc. Check these guys out:

 

http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/LedEngin/LZ4-40R200/?qs=vmkU9SbkviTsSw07ej8hAOwXrUYDIHnYqQAQ2iT2ydY%3d

 

http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/LedEngin/LZ4-40WW00/?qs=vmkU9SbkviRNJVxOINHpdzf7N%252bjcU0k0c1sDe%252b02wOU%3d

 

http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/LedEngin/LZ4-40B200/?qs=vmkU9SbkviRo0SP3h6K5KveFDrQdOW97%252b2qmbRnrnnY%3d

 

The lowest power I've been able to get away with so far and still keep nice tight buds is about 300w of light power using MH and LEDs mix. I get 1g/W with that mixture over a 1m x 1m area. My goal is to convert to all LEDs and keep the power under 200w. My emitters are on the way. Should be interesting!

 

Also, without adding your lenses maybe you can get your plants closer to your lights to increase intensity. Without the lenses the light spectrum may have a chance to blend earlier up by the fixture. The LedEngine LEDs already have a lense degree of 90 and 95 degrees so you can get fairly good penetration without adding special additional lenses.

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Maybe you would have an increase in yield with a bump in LED power. 50w may just not have enough penetration to really get the density you are looking for.

 

yes I understand, but my challenge is to do the g/W at least, with a microgrow. I'm searching for the right led engine. For a 0,16m² tent i'm using 4 engines, for a 1m² tent i would use 16 or 25 engines, penetration will be the same.

 

Actually, the efficient led chips are small, 1W or 3W, they will never do better than an HPS400 or 600 whith penetration.

I'm working with efficient chips, so 1W or 3W chips. I have to adapt my way of growing to the leds. SCROG or little SOG is the best.

 

The better the efficiency of the chip, the better the lm/W, so you save electricity.

My red 660nm chips have 42% of efficiency at 700mA. The Ledengin 10W 660nm has only 30% efficiency at 700mA.

The ledengin 3100K gives 50lm/W at 700mA. The luxeon rebel neutral I'm using, the PWN2, gives 110lm/W at 700mA.

 

If I could use 10W chips with the same efficiencies than the luxeon rebels I would use them, this is sure that penetration could be better.

 

 

I didn't say i will do the same light without lenses, i will use other leds with a narrower angle, 80° probably, 80-90° is very nice. Your ledengin has the perfect angle, but poor efficiency.

 

Now it is possible to find 3000K warmwhites which give 130lm/W@350mA,i will probably try them soon, but I think that the way to go is 4000-4500K neutrals+reds. 4000K Neutrals have always a better efficiency than warmwhites.

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^^^^^^^^^^^

The efficiency part is very nice about LEDs in general. The reason I'm using the higher wattage, less efficient ones for now is just ease of wiring since fewer LEDs, also they are so much more efficient overall than a HPS or MH and create much less heat.

 

I'm sure some day I will convert to the more efficient ones as they come out. Maybe sooner than later.

 

Mainly, I am focusing on light spectrum right now and what it does to different strains and varieties of plants.

 

I think that your Neutral/Red/Deepred mix is pretty dang close to perfect after seeing page 2 on here. Unless your arms are just really tiny and that's what makes the buds look huge. LOL

 

I'm going to run with the extra Deep Reds and the pure blues that you suggested before with the warm whites for now. I may even add some pure red to the mix after reading about Quantum Yield energy being higher there. I was thinking the Warm Whites have some much yellow in them that they would have a high Quantum Yield as well, so not sure if the extra Red will be needed or not.

 

What was your reasoning behind using the 630nm red?

 

B

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from the pure photosynthesis point of view, 660nm is more efficient than 630. For veg, 660 will be better than 630, but the differency wont be huge.

 

For bloom, some strains prefers 630, others prefers 660, so i'm trying to give the same amount of 630 and 660.

One 660nm led is a bit more pricey than a 630, and 630 leds are a bit more efficient.

 

The efficiency part is very nice about LEDs in general. The reason I'm using the higher wattage, less efficient ones for now is just ease of wiring since fewer LEDs, also they are so much more efficient overall than a HPS or MH and create much less heat.

 

I don't agree. Yes this is possible to tune the spectrum with leds, and the narrow peaks of wavelengths give more quantum energy. But a 600W HPS gives more than 150lm/W. The HPS spectrum is not wasted. This is very difficult to beat a 600HPS with leds, even with top bin emitters. The HPS spectrum is just lacking of a bit of red and blue.

 

You could have better results with an HPS+kessil blue/red engines than with MH+ red kessil. The lm/W ratio from an HPS is much better than any MH bulb.

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from the pure photosynthesis point of view, 660nm is more efficient than 630. For veg, 660 will be better than 630,.

 

This is very difficult to beat a 600HPS with leds, even with top bin emitters. The HPS spectrum is just lacking of a bit of red and blue.

 

If cost of the LEDs was not of imporance, and you could fine tune a DIY LED light to have 660nm + all the spectrum which is highly absorbed for photosynthesis at 600w, it does seem like a HPS would be beat. One nice thing LEDs have over a HPS lamp is they will last up to 10 years. HPS lamps only last 1 year of use.

 

10 years x average cost of HPS($75) = $750

 

Finely tuned $750, 600w LED light will have more useful light energy for the plants, so "in theory" should beat a HPS despite the lumenosity difference.

 

If plants absorb 660nm better than 590nm then really lumenosity is of less importance to wavelength?

 

HPS peaks around 590nm and even though the plants can adapt to using that wavelength for both Chloro A and Chloro B, 660nm is still much more efficiently absorbed?

 

This seems to hold true in theory anyway.

 

Your buds under the white/red LEDs look way better than any HPS grown buds that I've seen anyway. I would say that lumens do not matter as much as wavelength.

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One nice thing LEDs have over a HPS lamp is they will last up to 10 years.

 

yes, if they are properly cooled, and that's not always the case.

 

Your buds under the white/red LEDs look way better than any HPS grown buds that I've seen anyway.

 

really? i'm growing cannalope actually, under HPS, I will post pics of dry buds, you will see that the differency is not huge. Under HPS, the cannalope buds are dense and resinous.

 

Finely tuned $750, 600w LED light will have more useful light energy for the plants, so "in theory" should beat a HPS despite the lumenosity difference.

 

a $750 600W led light won't beat a 600 HPS, we have to wait at least a couple of years

 

In theory, 660nm is good for plants, yes, according to photosynthesis, but photosynthesis is not all for MJ flowering, they are many others unknown mechanisms.

 

If plants absorb 660nm better than 590nm then really lumenosity is of less importance to wavelength?

 

the absorbtion of a wavelength is related to luminosity, blue and red are the most efficient wavelengths at low luminosity.

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SS,

I just wanted to give you a link to a site where Weezard has been using blue and red leds and getting amazing results with a bi-spectrum light fixture. He did say that a couple of strains he tried did not do well in flower under the red/blue only spectrum, but the strain he grows mostly loves the light spectrum for veg AND flower. Here is the link to the forum, it's only a page long. I also included a link to his photos of a finished plant and veg plant.

 

forum:

http://boards.cannabis.com/indoor-lighting/198437-need-help-wavelength-spectrum-led.html

 

veg plant:

http://boards.cannabis.com/attachments/indoor-lighting/277335d1311109794-need-help-wavelength-spectrum-led-ledlit.jpg

 

finished plant:

http://boards.cannabis.com/attachments/indoor-lighting/277338d1311109818-need-help-wavelength-spectrum-led-pin-up.jpg

 

so as you can see, some strains do very well under red/blue only spectrums.

 

it's just not a good option for creating a "universal light spectrum" that would work for all plants.

 

After seeing this guy's grows, I got inspired to make my own red/blue only light spectrum, but I will be adding some warm whites as you suggested to get the other wavelengths in there to balance out the spectrum a bit more and try to emulate that "universal spectrum" I am going for in order to grow whatever strain or plant I want to.

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you are right BlueB, searching the universal spectrum. Personnally i can't design a lamp that would work only for a some strains.

 

Red+blue is perfect for veg, but because the CRI is very low this is very difficult to see the green of the plants and to know if they are healthy or well fed, so this is a good idea to add some coolwhite to a veg lamp.

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Nice post silver surfer.

 

The company from which I buy my LED's now uses 6500k whites in place of blues as they were having issues with the blue causing issues like bleaching, and the 6500k's evidently had better fill in other areas and still allowed the certain blue bands to be hit quite well.

 

They also have experimented with 4200k whites too. I'm not sure how they will mix it up in the future, but I do have a prototype he threw in when I made last purchase and it's a UFO light composed of entirely 4200k led's and I use this in my Veg tent and the plants seem to love it.

 

Hopefully in the future LED's are more "figured out" than they are now. I see many companies relying on the older spectrums of blue/red/far red and while they work ok, I believe like yourself that there are much better spectrum to attain, and I commend you for experimenting to find them yourself :).

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Hi 2001vettez06,

 

thanks for the kind words bro

 

Spectrum is not all, efficiency of the emitters is important too.

 

When you design a led lamp, you have to choose between the parts available at the market. There are a lot of parameters to take in account such as price, wavelength, thermal impedance, max current, bins, power, Vf, angle, quantity/reel, availability, brand, quantity of leds in one engine... The choice of one led is related to the other leds you will use for a led engine. This is really not simple, spectrum is a small part of the problem.

 

The led engine is a combination of different parts, there are thousands of combinations to explore, and they are changing very quick because LEDs are following the Haitz law, there are new parts on the market every day, more and more effective.

 

I believe that for veg, a red/blue spectrum is perfect, you need only to match photosynthesis curve. Adding a little coolwhite is good for the color rendering (CRI), it allows you to see the right color of your plants, and it is a good deep blue source.

A 100% 4200K white will work for veg, but a blue/red combination will be more effective and you will save more energy using only blue/red. Blue chips are very efficient, reds too (50% actually), white chips are made with blue chips and a layer of phosphor, so a white led is actually less efficient than a blue one. The only advantage is that with a 100% 4200K white engine the light will be very homogeneous. Bleach issues with blue leds comes because there is too much blue, or a too narrow angle. But blue wavelength is blue wavelenght, no matter if it comes from a blue or a white led.

 

For flowering i believe that blue+red is not enough, it is better to have a wider spectrum, especially in the yellow/amber/red/far red and neutral white is perfect to fill this part of the spectrum and to give some blue, now we have efficient neutral whites. But it is always better to use a cooler white led because it is more efficient and it will give more photons.

 

I'm waiting for very efficient neutral or warmwhites, they wiil work very well for flowering, the HPS spectrum but with more blue and red, and less FR and IR.

 

This thread began with a lamp using 4500Kwhites/630nm/660nm, the 4 spots one, the second lamp was with cooler whites (the 5 spots one), maybe 5500K (more efficient than the 4500K) and the same reds, result: the second lamp is more efficient than the first one, I experimented it.

 

My last engines are with 5700K/625nm/645nm with OSLON SSL 80° and they are working better, for half the price of the first Luxeon Rebel engines I made last year.

 

Greetz

Silva

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How do you know your last engines are working better? What is working better about them exactly? Are you growing the same strain with the new engines? Which leds did you use for your last engines, brand, wattage, wavelength etc.

 

I've now built a few led lights myself and have been experimenting. I've tried the LedEngin leds and so far your configuration has proven to be the best. I haven't tried exactly what you have only because I'm curious about trying other wavelength combinations that haven't been done yet.

 

Where do you get your 7 led engine pcb boards and lenses at? I found a place but they are a little on the pricey side.

 

The 10w emitters I've been using are not as efficient, but ease of setup is great.

 

So far my flowering led light isn't working. It consists of 1 blue 460nm in the middle, 4 warm white(contains 630nm, and 4 deep red 660nm. The plants are not reacting to the light at all even after 2 weeks. Any guesses as to why? I figured there wasn't enough blue in the mix, but I do not know for sure.

 

The veg light I have is working quite well. It is just red and blue leds, but I also have a 50w cfl off to the side and it helps. I'm starting to think that my strains are just not adapted to led spectra. Is this possible? Where are you at in your experiments?

 

My next light I will be using the same white/red/deep red ratio as you did with the Luxeon Rebel leds. I want to see if I get similar plant reactions or see if it's possible the strains I have are not adapted well. How did you know the Critical's you grew would do so nicely under leds?

 

Peace

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