Starting from Scratch and Hoping to Learn!

So after months of research and saving, I’ve decided to dive into this new hobby. I’m putting together a list and will be submitting orders very soon. I’d like to have anyone’s opinions on my selections before I spend money on something wasteful - so many good people here willing to share knowledge here and I appreciate you all.

Tent: Topogrow 2 in1 Indoor Grow Tent 60 x 48 x 80 (this is basically a 4 x 4 tent with an extra foot with a divided room for seedlings - for some reason I like having things all in one spot)

Lights: Either two HLG XL QB Rspec LEDS or one HLG 550 v2. I like the idea of having two separate lights so I can hang at different levels for height differences of plants or if I only have one or two plants versus filling the entire 4 x 4 space. Although the 550 may be nice just to hang and not worry about coverage, etc.

I’m not sure what lights would be best for the propagation room. I’m assuming some 4 foot long T5 lights - but I’m not sure what will fit since I only have a foot wide of space.

Filter/Filtration: Either an AC Infinity T6 or S6. I don’t mind spending the extra $40 to have humidity and temperature controlled, but I’m wondering how effective the controllers/sensors are. Would I be best to go with a S6 and try a separate monitoring system? With the filter I’ll probably just go with the AC Infinity brand - Ive heard great things about Phresh but they cost $100 more and I’m not sure I want to spend the extra out of the gate. I’ll also be buying 8 feet of ducting

A couple clip on fans for ventilation/air movement

5 - five gallon grow bags - I plan on doing everything really simple for my first grow - autoflowers, no LST - just want to keep things simple

Fox farm Ocean Forest/Happy Frog soils (I’ll get nutes down the road - I figure with hot soil I’m good for at least a month as is)

Acurite o00613 Digital hydrometer/Indoor thermometer Humidty guage (maybe a camera linked to my phone so I can keep track of things from my phone) ($14)

Apera Instruments A1209 Value series ph Meter with Ph Control Kit and soaking solution ($80)

so how off the mark am I? I think my biggest decision is going with either two 260XL Rspecs or the 550 V2. I’ll be ordering seeds from IGLM asap - I’d like to start with autoflowers, even though I’ve heard they are a little bit tricky initially - I just want to start the easiest and quickest route first as I learn. My tent will be in my basement - I’m not sure if venting out in the same room I’m intaking air from is feasible? It’s possible I could run the ductwork to an adjoining larger room in my basement as well.


@MesialDrift Looks like you are off to great start i don’t see a TDS pen for measuring your PPM’s. Happy Growing

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HLG 100


If I had a 4x4 area I’d get the 260 XLs. Better coverage than the 550… don’t forget the promo code “dude” for 10% off

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Oh your right - I completely forgot about that! I added the Lxuemlu Professional 3-1 to my cart! Thank you!

Thanks @NeoGroR. I’ve read your advice a lot on other threads and I’m leaning that way anyway - yes that code still works. I think I’m going to order now while they are still in stock!

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It’s an addictive and very rewarding hobby, if done correctly. Seeing your diligence so far, I think you will be successful.

You will need pH up and down.

pH meter

TDS meter.

I highly suggest you follow one person guide. I follow Hellraiser, and being happily rewarded for it.

I can post his guide if you like.

Happy growing!


Are you in Michigan? I just ordered seeds from a seed bank in Jackson. Great selection. I will buy from them again. Seed Cellar

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Id like to keep every LED but the extra propagation room is two tiered so I’d have to keep the lights really close to the seedlings - the HLG 100 is a foot by a foot so I’d need two to get the 4 feet in length. Or would I even need to bother?

Good to know! I could easily drive to Jackson to get seeds. Maybe I’ll take a trip to get started sooner while I wait for my ILGM seeds to arrive.

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Yep, I think the $80 package from amazon includes PH control kit along with the Apera PH meter. Linking someone’s starting package would be a huge help. I know I’ll forget something and regret it later. Thank you!

ILGM will be there fast. I ordered last Saturday, they’re being delivered tomorrow.

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Wow, What method did you do? I was going to send cash.

Zell+e, if your bank has it. Super easy

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For your clone area, I would build a dimmable LED bar.

I just went on rapid led dot com and real quickly priced out what it would cost to build one.
64 dollars for LEDs
28 for the heat sink
And 56 for the driver

Or you could just build one using a single Samsung strip.

I know @dbrn32 could put a parts list together for you.


I’m working my courage up just to put together the 260 XLs. If I can do that then can I do the DIY method with the other light?

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Oh yeah, for sure. There’s nothing to it. A single strip, a heat sink and a driver, easy.

The 260 kits are more complicated… and they’re NOT complicated.


This smaller spaces are 1’x4’ then, divided with a shelf?

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Welcome from Mi, in the Southwest corner. :grin:


Yes @dbrn32. The space is further divided with a horizontal shelf making two separate smaller compartments.

Thank you for expert opinion :slight_smile:

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