HLG 260XL QB Rspec vs 260 QB648

The QB is listed @ $314, the QB648 is $499.
Question is, is the performance noticeably different enough to justify the large price difference?
Has anyone upgraded from one to the other or have used both with any insight?

1 Like

@dbrn32 can give you the best advice on which to choose bro. He is the light guru on here.

The 648 uses diablo boards. There is more than twice as many leds per board, that’s why you see such large jump in price. As far as needing to spend more on upgrade is more of personal choice. The 648 package is more efficient, but that isn’t most important factor to a lot of people. I think ppf per watt increases about 14%.

1 Like

@dbrn32 ,Thanks for that. So for an initial purchase for 2x in a 4x4 area, it sounds like the 648’s would be the way to go.
Pricey, yes. But I don’t want to cheap out on lights.
HLG seems to be the top dog, but interestingly enough the options for 4x4 all point to the different versions of paired 260’s. The larger lights are more geared for 5x5’s.
That’s fine though. I’d rather have multiple smaller lights for more versatility.
But it’d be cool if they had a rock solid designated 4x4 light to offer.
Not complaining, just saying.

3 Likes

That would be HLG Blackbird. It uses the new QB200 board and designed for a 4x4.
Two of 320W XL QB648 LED Kits would fill up a 4x4 nicely.

5 Likes

I’ll throw this option at you. I run 2 in a 4x8 and 1 in a 4x4. It’s really hard to beat for the price. This is the price for a refurb Scorpion Diablo shipped to your door using the discount code “grow” at checkout. This is end game here bro.

1 Like

If you have the grip I would spend it on the 648’s. I have dual 260 Rspec’s with UVA in my 3x3. I upgraded my old gen1 260 to Rspec boards and then bought a second 260 Rspec kit and bolted them together for my 3x3. They work very well with the ability to pull 257 watts each from the wall. But IMHO they just don’t have the power for a 4x4 and keep a nice spread. My 3x3 is at a ave. of 940 PPFD across the canopy with each fixture pulling 230w each. I would be no where near that with one fixture and wide open. And there is a fare amount of heat generated from the new drivers and the boards. To contrast that I have two 350R’s bolted together with UVA in a 2x4. There on the second click on the dimmer and pulling almost nothing power wise and at 500 PPFD this morning in early veg kicking butt with no heat. I will be upgrading my 260 rspec’s to the 648 boards down the road in the 3x3. For a 4x4 it would hands down be a Scorpion Diablo or possibly 3ea. 350R’s for the max in flexibility. Once you have the 648 boards and especially if you have something to compare it two visually and meters to measure PPFD and power draw, one tends to have a slack jaw moment. Good Luck

3 Likes

I would encourage any diablo board as well for efficiency and bc i love how much blue is in the spectrum. Good luck on your choice you will be happy either way

2 Likes

When you see them say something like 5x5 flower footprint thet are simply using light output from fixture in comparison to recommended dli. Not necessarily that they have done extensive testing on said fixture in said space. For all intents and purposes, two 260 kits is same as hlg-550, 4 boards at roughly same output current. The hlg-600 uses driver that runs at little higher board current, so pulls slightly more. But they are all close enough to say they are about the same. Using the two fixtures gives you flexibility to only run 1 if need be, or change spacing on the fixtures a little. Plus if you ever had a failure you would still have one working fixture. But the ability for either to grow is pretty much the same.

1 Like

@dbrn32 That makes total sense. I was fixated on the published flowering footprint. And as @The_Chef mentioned, the Blackbird is the only one advertised as such for a 4x4.
The 260’s versatility is hard to get outa my head as compared to one bigger light. As you mentioned, a failure or short/tall plants and the ability to have lights at multiple heights if need. So in reality a guy couple have a room and or tents with nothing but 260’s.
I’ve just recently (mostly) got the OK from the better half to pursue setting up a basement room for plants.
So the reality has set in & I’m going down rabbit holes lol. Your info is invaluable. I’ve lurked here for a couple years & have watched you guide countless people about lighting & it’s much appreciated by all.
I’ve been on HLG’s website looking hard at everything. It leads me to a question:
For a 4x4-5x5 area the price range for lighting ranges from (roughly) $600 to well over a grand.
I’m not trying to pinch pennies, but the price range is obvious.
I understand bigger/better/newer has its merits but at what point does a guy just push the buy button lol.
I mean is it advantageous to run an extremely more powerful light at lower settings vs a weaker light wide open?
My other hobby is high-end hotrods. 400 horsepower will get you down the road but 750 is a lot more fun. Is purchasing lights like that where at some point f/u money takes over?
Sorry for the novel, just trying to wrap my head around it. And not fully understanding the intricate details of each light offered & actual results to the plants doesn’t help either.
I just about deleted this post entirely, but heck no. Theses are my thoughts. And I’m not even high. Lol.
Overthinking it, probably. But hey, I’m on the right track & fully understand that blurples won’t get me to where I want to be. Lol.

2 Likes

Any route you go with HLG , you’re in great hands with them. Their customer service is second to none.
Most of the growers here will go a little bigger on lighting than indicated. They say a Scorpion Diablo is for a 5x5. All the growers on here I know have them in a 4x4 including myself. Always better to have a little extra and dial it down if need be. :call_me_hand:

3 Likes

(post deleted by author)

I’m the guy that will almost always want more power and use the throttle as I see fit. Same with the lights. It’s really nice to have the dual 350R’s in the 2x4 with them on the second click making no heat at all at 500 PPFD in early veg and even PPFD spread across the tent. While a single 350R will more than get the job done. It’s nice to idle.

1 Like

I appreciate you keeping post. I’m not really into hotrods, but i have a whole bunch of little girls and a boat. So i’m plenty accustomed to watching money burn. Imo two 260 xl kits is all anyone needs in a 4x4. It’s not going to pull every last gram out of the space, but is reasonable or better in every category you should consider. Spending more can get you more, and that’s worth a lot to some. But they don’t sell a light that’s going to produce twice as much in your space, and that’s worth a lot too.

2 Likes